OP Sequence

OP: 「Youthful Dreamer」 by TrySail

「高校教師始めました」 (Kōkō kyōshi hajimemashita)
“I’m a High School Teacher Now”

Disney-esque cartoons and sanitised fairytales have been telling kids to follow their dreams and do whatever they want for generations now, but when I was a toddler I dreamed of growing up to become a dinosaur, and here I am still a warm-blooded sack of soft human flesh. Bah. Don’t blame me for being cynical. Denpa Kyoushi hides those messages behind a thin wall of absurdity, but it’s still more or less Japan’s take on similar themes. How does it do?

I read the original manga for Denpa Kyoushi before watching its pilot, which I consider a disadvantage for enjoying a show. This is especially true when we’re dealing with a comedy, because jokes just as funny the second time around. There’s also the initial impression that the manga leaves on you, which is hard to shake. It’s funny how Denpa Kyoushi did a big rant about seiyuu in this episode, because I found that some voices just didn’t work for me, which is not a thing that happens often; I thought myself a fairly flexible person in that regard. Perhaps Kamiya Hiroshi has too distinctive a voice, so his performance of Kagami Junichirou sounded like someone else despite the good rants. But Matsui Rena is a newcomer, and her rendition of Suzune just seemed stilted; perhaps she tried to play the jock a bit too hard. Who was the sound director again? Nagasaki Yukio? No amateur, that one. Well, at least Amamiya Sora can sing, so Face Punch was fine for me.

The fact that I actually had an image of and predispositions about these characters and their voices in my head to begin with is probably a compliment; it means that the cast was endearing. That’s going to have to carry Denpa Kyoushi, because it’s a character comedy first and foremost, and a lot of the laughs—and occasionally the tears, if they play up the drama—is going to rely on the audience actually liking Denpa Kyoushi‘s band of misfits. It’s unfortunate that better visuals couldn’t be mustered to back them up, though. A-1 Pictures are as anime mercenaries; they can assemble a team to do anything, but their performance hinges greatly on how much money the producers can funnel into them, and this time it seems like the amount is ‘not as much’. There’s some visual flair now and then, but for the most part the aesthetics are mediocre at best. To put a positive spin to it, Denpa Kyoushi looks somewhat old-school; consider the OP, which is a rather retro character parade on abstract backgrounds. This could well be the influence of director Satou Masato, who’s old, and/or it could have been a deliberate choice. Great Teacher Onizuka didn’t look at all good, but it was still ultimately one of the great anime of its time.

Indeed, if we consider Denpa Kyoushi to be something of a new age GTO, that would be about right. Adolescent problems exist as much today as it did back then; they’ve just been upgraded a bit. For example, bullying has gotten slightly more sophisticated. Therefore, while in 1999 Onizuka-sensei needed to be unorthodox and strong, in 2015 Kagami-sensei needs to be unorthodox and smart. The core principles are still the same, though; in every age, in every societies, there are teens who have temporarily lost their way, and that one understanding teacher who catches them early can very well shape the rest of their life. In particular, Kagami Junichirou needs to reinvigorate an entire young generation of a Japan that has been in recession for decades. You may have noticed that he only sets out to avenge Face Punch when the bullies try to crush her dreams. And because this is an ultimately idealistic series, the good guys win! The bad guys reform! Yay! And where in real life Face Punch’s teachers would have foamed from the mouth to hear that she’s taking voice lessons instead of studying, Kagami-sensei, despite his warnings about the seiyuu industry, is ultimately supportive. Sure, a message like ‘only do what you want to do’ may sound a bit rich coming from a Nobel-winning young genius with both the ability and the resources to franchise whatever he wants to do, but his heart is in the right place. And as the Great Teacher Onizuka showed us, a little heart goes a long way.


ED Sequence

ED: 「DREAMIN’」 by 東京パフォーマンスドール (Tokyo Performance Doll)



  1. I completely agree that some of the voices in this episode were mediocre to say the least. The ‘delinquent’ girls even lacked any emotion; their reactions felt unrealistic.

  2. I do not have anything against this kind of shows. But as long you follow your Dream, and can make a live with it, then go. Chase your Dream. Just remember, someday you will lose your Parents that support you, and perhaps you also will became one Parent that must support a Family. Yes, someday you must fill the Spot of your father or Mother. Like it or not

    So Dreams is fine, but losing the Way to live on your own Feet. No please

  3. What a bomb. The poor drawing that distorted the characters’ faces and limbs pretty often just looked awful for my tired eyes. Aside from that, this episode was nearly unwatchable for me. The pacing was awful, the dialogues had no bite at all, and sensei’s “method” to solve his pupil’s trouble just seem too good to be true. I don’t even want to know how sensei’s bizarre way of teaching (utilizing smartphone game, really?) would yield any meaningful result to his students due to how much this premiere bored me.

  4. Is reading the manga beforehand this was really a bad idea in my end? Serious this episode disappointed on so many levels, the bad voice acting, bad animation and the rush in story telling department with one my favourite lesson from Kagami down the drain. My favourite student, Kanou, also gets nerve when her background and motivation get slipped by real quick with such some small lines together with the lack of impact. Seriously, what the hell is this????

    Guilty Slumber
  5. Was it really that bad? I never heard of this story before and never read the manga and I really enjoyed this episode. The only bad voice acting I heard was Suzune. Other than that, I really enjoyed the story. I couldn’t stop smiling. I even watched the first episode twice.

  6. I loved the moment when he recited to the delinquent gang criminal offenses they have committed towards their former friend… complete with (I presume) actual criminal code article numbers!

  7. I am a fans of Denpa Kyoushi to be honest. I have the manga from volume 1. And i can say Denpa Kyoushi TV is a big disappointment. Even though the first episode is exactly similar to chapter one from the manga. But it lack something, the charm of the series lose its light.

    It’s kinda sad that one of my favourite manga ended up like this. i hope they can make next episode more improved and entertaining.

  8. Hmm… I love the manga, but man, they went cheap on this production. The production values are too cheap for my taste. Like they found the cheapest inbetweening house in Vietnam to do the work. The overall look of the show is really not where it should be.

    Fingers crossed, but not getting my hopes up because of my Manga Adaptation Rule. (Which states that a large percentage of really good manga gets inexplicably made into really awful anime.)


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