OP: 「輪! Moon! dass! cry!」 (Wa! Moon! dass! cry!) by Akasaki Chinatsu, Tomatsu Haruka, Toyosaki Aki
The first episode of Joshikousei no Mudazukai introduces us to Tanaka Nozomu (Akasaki Chinatsu) and her adventures in high school as she encounters the trials and tribulations of finding the perfect man while being stuck at an all-girls academy. While the opening creates the perfect atmosphere for a madcap comedy where Nozomi goes face-to-face with girls as crazy as she can be, do the jokes live up to how hype the music is? Well, that’s a complicated one…
Nozomu being our eyes and ears in the world of Joshikousei no Mudazukai is a double-edged sword. She has enough energy to draw attention her way and create hilarious situations based on her perception of those around her and the lack of self-awareness she has in how she looks to others. But in the process of giving her peers funny names and coming up with humorous dream scenarios where she finds the perfect boyfriend through shojo tropes (ending at the most hilarious part of the episode where she imagines a guy swooning when she eats bread meant for pigeons), there isn’t much support to help the punchlines land. When she tries to do something humorous with her friends both old and new, they find a way to diffuse any of her attempts to be truly funny and vice versa. When the chuuni tries to get overindulgent with her fantasies, Nozomu has a numb reaction. The jokes about the teacher’s desperation to diffuse any of the girls hitting on him by outright stating his love for college girls and the lack of realism in teacher/student romances are also quickly diffused as the anime quickly moves from one scene to the next.
Even the jokes about her friends Akane (Tomatsu Haruka) and Shiori (Toyosaki Aki) mocking her don’t have the playful fun that makes it seem like they are joking. Where it feels like they genuinely hate her. The last scene where Akane calls her “amazingly stupid” and Shiori being bluntly astounded that Nozomu overestimates herself is shot and framed as if it’s a drama where Nozomu looks hurt and insulted when she realizes just what Shiori meant by her words. It’s a shame because I was hoping that Joshikousei no Mudazukai would embrace more of the wackiness and creativity behind its opening and ending sequences. I can see Joshikousei no Mudazukai coming into its own in later episodes, especially once they give it’s jokes more breathing room to work with and give the cast the opportunity to be themselves. With its first episode, however, there are some growing pains that the anime is dealing with to match the quality of its peers as premier school comedies.
ED: 「青春のリバーブ」 (Seishun no Reverb) by Akasaki Chinatsu, Tomatsu Haruka, Toyosaki Aki