OP: 「LIVE for LIFE ～狼たちの夜～」 (LIVE for LIFE ~Ookamitachi no Yoru~) by 愛美 (Aimi)
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「ネバれ、納豆オクラ丼ぶっかけチーズトッピング弁当 440kcal」 (Nebare, Nattō Okura Don Bukkake Chīzu Toppingu Bentō 440 kcal)
“Sticky, Natto Okra Rice Bowl with Cheese Topping Bento 440kcal”
So think Dragon Ball Tournaments, but held in a supermarket, where the prize is a half-off bento. Now you’ve got the gist of this aptly named anime, “Ben-To.“
The first time I’ve heard of Ben-To was during a marathon of Patrik’s light novel reviews, which you can read in particular for Ben-To right here. I like stories where the setting is rather normal except for a couple twists, so I’m not exactly unfamiliar with the territory. While the synopsis might sound weird to newcomers of anything Japanese, I can only say, bring on the crazy.
Given that you’re not already tired of high school settings with the typical archetypes floating around, Ben-To’s not really that different in this aspect. Sure, the heroine is a white-haired kuudere goddess whose design fits my tastes almost perfectly, but a kuudere is a kuudere, and a loser protag is a loser, and a clingy wacko girl with a protective bodyguard is a clingy wacko girl with a protective bodyguard. Buuuut, they’re mixed in a combination that’s just fresh enough, and the voice actors along with their written personalities so happens to hit all the right notes. I wasn’t annoyed one bit in my entire viewing, and I even liked the opening and ending songs (I usually don’t, no real reason).
If you like to be informed, david production handles the, well, production, and they have a track record of Level-E and Book of Bantorra to name a few from the top of my head. My general gathering of data over the years informs me that they’re a mediocre animation company that does an ambitious job at adaptations, but fall slightly short most of the time when they’re not jointing with another company. Regardless of that description, I’m quite pleased to say the fight animation is admirable work (especially in the opening), but the show as a whole isn’t polished like a P.A. Works. Just saying. The extra style injection is much appreciated though, such as chopsticks snapping for scene changes. Those clever dogs.
For a first episode, color me intrigued. They’ve hardly answered much, but that’s also the reason why I want to know more, if only just because. Had some good laughs too. I’d say the most enticing reason to keep watching would be because of how much effort they put into the fight scenes. The choreography is dynamic and kick ass, and they have the animation to support it. Characters aren’t annoying, therefore the inevitable harem won’t be annoying, and face it, fighting’s way better animated. Oh, and a jazz soundtrack. Last I heard one was in Cowboy Bebop. Classy.
Oh, and to avoid redundant questions, I will be covering Ben-To and only Ben-To as it airs every Saturday. Posts will vary from Saturday night to Sunday, and no, I don’t personally see this as me returning to the site. It just so happens there was an interesting show on a weekend when I’m less busy from schoolwork that no one could/wanted to/etc. cover, and the stars aligned. Surprise?
ED: 「笑顔の法則」 (Egao no Housoku) by 伊瀬 茉莉也 (Ise Mariya)
Watch the ED!: Streaming ▼