Sket Dance 26

The three-person main cast of Gintama crosses over to Sket Dance, using a strange interdimensional device that then shorts out. As Switch works to repair it, the two casts trade barbs, pointing out the similarities in their characters and their voices. When they activate the device again, it takes the two casts back in time to the first episode of Sket Dance. Eventually, the Gintama club returns to whence it came.

Sket Dance is apparently going on another 13 episodes, if not more, but I believe I’ve had my fill; it’s time to say goodbye. Update: due to the poor debut of C³, we’ll be dropping that and continuing to watch this for the time being. I must admit, I have never watched a single episode of Gintama and know nothing about it or its characters, nor the understanding that Sket Dance is, at its core, Gintama in a school setting, what with all the gags and parody. Ah well, you learn something new everyday! And the fact the core trio was essentially doubled gave this episode an immense amount of energy.

Despite not knowing anything about Gintama, I could still appreciate virtually an entire episode of breaking the fourth wall, though I’ll admit it seemed a bit overdone at times – fourth wallbreaking is best when used sparingly, lest it get tired. I did recognize Rie Kugimiya as the voice of the red Chun Li, and the fact that Switch and Gin had the same voice, and the harking back to Teppei – the red herring for the main character in the first episode – was a nice touch. If nothing else, pointing out its blatant similarities to the obviously very popular Gintama franchise – obviously done to cash in on its success – is a nice bit of self-depricating humor.


Rating: 3

Shinryaku!? Ika Musume 2 – 01

After watching an action movie, Squid Girl starts believeing mortal threats and bombs are everywhere, and it starts to feel to her like she’s an invader again. Chizuru quickly puts her in her place. When Kiyomi and her friends pay a visit, Sanae gets jealous and spies on her. Squid Girl is picking jellyfish off the beach, leading to a beachwide competition that the scientists win by cheating.

Let’s get this out of the way: RABUJOI won’t be reviewing this series, it’s just here because it’s a slow week. Last fall, Ika was a charming, often witty diversion with a colorful cast and an extremely odd angle: a squid with human form plans to invade – but only ends up assimilating into human society. It ranked 9th of 15 Fall Series, with a respectable 3.375 mean rating. But part of what made the series so enjoyable was its freshness and novelty. From this initial episode, I fear the proverbial squid’s been out of the sea a little too long, and it’s starting to smell.

Nothing we saw this week was new. Ika still has an inflated sense of superiority over all humans that isn’t really deserved. She still resents Eiko’s scolds, is scared of Chizuru, and is annoyed by Senou, et cetera. It’s clear this series is going to run with the same formula as its first season, and while there’s nothing wrong with that, I think I’ve had my fill. It might have been interesting if a sequel took place years later, say when Squid Girl has grown older and more (or less) mature. Living with humans so long would surely change her personality. Alas, that’s not what this series is about.


Rating: 2.5