When Kodaka Hasegawa finds out that he will be transferring to a new school, he is determined to make a positive impression, and maybe even some friends. However, Kodaka discovers he is out of luck when he immediately gets labeled as a violent delinquent due to his blond hair and intimidating expression. Although a month has passed, Kodaka is still alone thanks to his notorious reputation. However, his life begins to change when he finds fellow loner Yozora Mikazuki talking to her imaginary friend in an empty classroom.
After sharing stories of their lonely high school life, Kodaka and Yozora decide to overcome the difficulties of making friends together by starting the Neighbor's Club. Created for people who don't have friends, daily activities involve learning social skills and how to fit in, which will hopefully allow them to make friends. Joined by the eroge-loving Sena Kashiwazaki, and other eccentric outcasts, Kodaka may finally have managed to find people he can call friends, in this club filled with hilarious oddballs.
In 2012, Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai Portable, a visual novel by Namco Bandai Games for the Sony PlayStation Portable, was released.
A live-action film based strictly on the novels and not the anime was released on February 1, 2014 and directed by Takurō Oikawa.
If you have strong feelings about this anime, please don't read any further. I just noticed there was an abnormally large amount of overly positive reviews for this show and thought it would be best if there was a second opinion readily available.
Haganai was not an enjoyable anime for me. I did not find it funny past a certain point. For the first three episodes the show revolves around the mistaken delinquent and the two "heroines" of the series - Yozora and Sena. These episodes for the most part were quite sharp, and as Sena and Yozora's antics grew and grew, Kodaka's role as the
straight man would be stressed further and further.
So it makes sense when dolloping even more characters into the show would have scary consequences. Kodaka's cosplaying sister, a perverse scientist, a ten year old sister of the church who says poop IN EVERY EPISODE THEREAFTER, a cross-dressing maid (whose original gender I can't even remember) - and you know what? There's a line that is drawn eventually where you're just sitting there watching your Mazui subs on your home computer and go "why do I give a shit about any of these characters?"
Your rhetorical question is not easy to answer. It's a bitter reality, but Haganai is just another generic ecchi harem. Kodaka can do nothing to save the show any more. The craziness gets too out of hand for a single straight man, and amidst the chaos you lose the ability to sympathize with any character. Do I root for Sena? She was just so mean in that last scene! But now Yozora's being illogical! Who am I supposed to side with? Thank goodness the nun got naked! That sure helped alleviate tension!
The characters feel too unbelievable for an anime that tries to deal with an actual issue. It's about a group of freaks trying to become friends, except said group is so eccentric that such personalities could never exist. There is no characterization to any cast member as each is treated as a joke. All other reviewers call Rika the "perverted scientist" because that's what she is; nothing more. She has no feelings, she has no emotions, she just has her gags. There is no insight into any of the characters of the show save Yozora and Sena, and the little that is given into them is so cliche and sparse that it's hard to separate Haganai from the thousands of other ecchi comedies.
Haganai just felt like a jumble of too many ideas, too many characters, and not enough depth anywhere. It is a shallow production laden with offensive language and poop jokes. And not the good kind of poop jokes, just repetition of the word "poop." The show struggles with trying to be realistic whilst adding so many unrealistic elements it just became frustrating.
I do not recommend this anime to anyone. It earns 5/10 (average) and has nothing interesting to offer beyond one or two jokes throughout it's 288 minute run-time.
With Christmas fast approaching, I can safely say one thing: All I want for Christmas is Meat. Delicious, delicious, Meat.
What do you get when an ambitious and rather oddball girl drags an unwilling male into forming a club for whatever reason? You get the "Save the World by Overloading it with Fun (SOS) Haruhi Suzumiya Brigade!" Oh wait, wrong show. You alternatively could get the "Neighbors Club." Yes, that seems about right. This fabulous club is composed of Kodaka and Kobato Hasegawa, Yozora Mikazuki, Sena Kashiwazaki, Rika Shiguma, Maria Takayama and Yukimura Kusunoki. Watch as this rebellious group takes on one of the
world's most challenging of tasks: making friends!
"Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai" follows the misadventures of our assembled group of social misfits as they chase after the ever elusive rose-colored campus life of "popular" people. And what a daunting task this seems to be. After all, when your club is made up of such interesting people as a misunderstood "Yankee", two girls who assert themselves as goddesses (though only one of them is truly worthy of the title), a gender-confused-full-of-fighting-spirit-samurai and many others, the task of making true friends would seem quite difficult. Unknown to them, however, perhaps they will make friends with the very misfits they set out on this journey with.
Let us quickly get this out of the way. The artwork in "Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai" is flat out awesome. Those familiar with "Denpa Onna to Seishun Otoko" will immediately recognize the similarities, since they were done by the same artist. And how fortunate that is, because depictions of Meat are as glorious as they can be. Backgrounds and characters are very colorful and animations are fluid enough, giving the viewer delicious eye candy. Look at those sultry lips on the females for instance...Check out official arts if you are having doubts.
"Haganai" (which is what I will be calling this show now) gives us the rather touching message that it is not necessarily the number of friends one has, but its about the one friend that is worth a hundred. The de facto leader of the Neighbors Club, Yozora, once wisely proclaimed this as a child, but now has trouble even maintaining normal conversations with other people. She above all wants to make friends, along with the rest of the club. However, most of the show is focused on comedy that usually arises with clashes between Yozora and Sena, and not actually making friends. I mean they try, and by that I mean Kodaka tries, but they usually end up having their share of laughs without establishing that close connection they desire. The club is already in trouble in the beginning, seeing as we have two tsunderes with a liking to the main character, Inde--Maria and Kobato fighting for Kodaka's brotherly affections, and Yukimura and Rika, who are both plain weird. Rika more so.
The sound of "Haganai" is quite enjoyable in its own charming kind of way. The opening theme is "Zannenkei Rinjinbu" by all the female members of the cast, and is an extremely cheesy J-Pop song detailing aspects of friendship. It is upbeat and disgustingly catchy, with a good indication of what the show is about. The ending theme is "My Feelings "by Marina Inoue (voice of Yozora) and fits well enough. It is yet another disgustingly catchy theme accompanied by a very enjoyable sequence of Yozora and Sena interacting in a rock band...The voice acting is excellent, and Marina Inoue's deeper voice for Yozora is quite enjoyable, in particular when she is on one of her many rants and shenanigans concerning Sena and general social values.
"Haganai"s comedy is generally pretty funny. Most of the comedic scenes are the club's fruitless attempts at making friends, such as establishing connections through multiplayer gaming, karaoke, and keeping in touch via cell phones. Of course, these attempts go horribly wrong, such as griefing each other and keeping things too literal....It is a fun and rather cheerful series, but Yozora is usually there to give the brutally sarcastic remarks she characteristically has, giving glimpses of her underlying attitude. I did not dislike her, but I certainly wished that she had tried a bit harder in making friends with the others, rather that step all over Sena and try to get closer to Kodaka. She may even have become much closer friends with Sena if she did not act that way, giving her just one more friend. The last episode just might change your opinion of her however...
There was a slight plot interwoven throughout the episodes, but it does not really leave much of an impact, at least not on me. You will have to be the judge on that. I however, simply watched "Haganai" for my weekly servings of Meat and shenanigans of the "Neighbors Club."
"Haganai" is an entertaining show depicting the doomed attempts of the "Neighbors Club" in making friends and ultimately becoming popular. Even though most of their attempts fail, it gives a rather nice message that friendship can come from the most unexpected of places. It covers basic methods of interacting with others and the hilarity that follows. The comedy is good, and the delicious eye candy may be enough to draw you into the series. Check it out if you ever need an anime guide on how NOT to make friends!
Oh, and to those who have bothered to read this far, I am a Sena fanboy. Sorry, Yozora, move over for the REAL goddess. She, along with a certain brigade leader, will be the only Gods I'll ever worship!
Disclaimer: My normal scoring preconditions go flying out the window. This is my first non-critical review. This show is mainly for humor so I review it as such. So my scores are based more on how much laughter I got out of it and less on critical appeal. See the rest of my body of work for something more critical. If you don't agree with my score, please don't downgrade it just because you think the show is stupid or what not.
Summary: Haganai is another average slice of life anime. It's humorous, kinda realistic, and in a club school setting. I didn't expect much
and I pretty much got what was predicted. I'll just get right down to the specifics. I don't include the sequel although a lot of what I say in this review applies to the sequel.
Story (5/10): For a slice of life anime, I would say this anime had little story compared to some others i've seen. Basically just play out the strange club scenario with every awkward student in school in one club. They have fun, do weird things, and have a "school" life. Sort of. In any event, it lacked any real substance. The only noteworthy piece of storyline was the revelation between Kodoka and Yozura (I didn't name it to avoid a spoiler). Even that was relatively downplayed seeing as romance in this story takes a back seat to comedy. There isn't anything special about this story and there isn't anything to hate. I wrote a shorter story review because story isn't the main draw for Haganai.
Art (10/10): Girls are very curvy, cute, and Kodoka has weird hair. Alright being serious this art style isn't special but it sure is great to look at. No complaints. The color schemes are vibrant and bright. So everything is right in the world.
Sound (8/10): The opening theme is one of those multi-little girl songs that are really hit or miss. Think Toradora opening theme. I personally find those amusing, but after about 6 episodes the opening wears on my nerves. Other songs generally mirror this style. Dubbed version had little fault in voice quality.
Character (10/10): Before i get down to the nitty gritty, i just want to say one thing... MEAT! Yes if there is one thing I got from this anime, it is Yozora picking on Sena MEAT with lots of MEATy insults. But lets start off with Kodoka. He is the supposed boy delinquent who in reality is a good kid. He takes good care of his sister, he cooks well, and he is courteous. His only poor qualities are his a-hole looks and dirty blonde/brown hair. i really liked Kodoka for really simple reasons: he plays his part really well. He is the only guy in the Neighbors Club and he takes a lot of flak and dishes out a lot of humor without meaning to.He also has that little history with Yozora while his dad has history with the school prez. He had some development, but you have to love him more for his comical antics. Yozura is... an a-hole and a darn good one at that. I'm sorry but she is just on a whole nother level from Kodoka. She is so witty with Sena it's not even fair. I don't remember any of the humor from her being too forced. Sena literally walks in to so many of Yozora's pitfalls. She probably made me laugh the most and she was a great character. Oh and her romance/past with Kodoka is probably her only weak spot. Enjoy the mean Yozora because she is the bomb. Now on to Sena MEAT! Ok I'll stop with the meat but Sena really does have meat for brains. She is perhaps the antithesis of everything a talented girl is supposed to be. Sena is smart, athletic, hot, and... unpopular. Yes she is is the daughter of the most powerful figure in the school and she goes herself to the Neighbors Club to find friends. Now this might just be me, but I find this hilarious. More so is her fighting with Yozora. As I said with Yozora except in complete opposition, Sena is an absolute moron if it isn't school related. Oh, and what isn't hilarious about sex jokes with Sena. I literally died over Sena's embarassment when it came to those dating games. Sena is in my opinion the funniest character here because she is so stupid. Moving on to Kobato. Not much to say. She is an anime freak (haha like us all). She can be funny but mostly is just another character. She plays the little sister role perfectly. Next. Yukimura. Ok I found Yuki to be really frickin weird and before you ask, it has everything to do with his gender identity crisis. Thank god he is anime boy and so his looks don't look as awkward in a maid costume. Again sometimes funny, plays the confidence lacking cross-dresser to the letter. Next. Maria. Ok Maria is a nun... and a brat.I've loved many of these opposite social roles but Maria is second best behind Sena. LOL the 10 year old nun who is advisor of the club and gets smacked around by Yozora. I didn't get many laughs but looking back now this role Maria plays is hilarious. Finally Rika. OMG those comics were hilarious. I never would have thought porn and mecha could be so funny. And Rika makes it so much more funny. She is definitely the least realistic character of all (who heard of albert einstein living in a school lab unbeknownst to the public?). But her sex jokes make her one of the funniest characters here. Also the fact that Rika talks third person actually adds to the amusement (whereas the sisters in Railgun made me want to shoot myself after 2 episodes). There we go, all the main characters. The other side characters added to the amusement, especially the school prez.
Enjoyment (10/10): Meat, sex jokes, awkward characters. A diabolical mixture that made this show hilarious. Personally I found this show way better than Baka and Test (which in my opinion was stupid and not funny at all but thats just me). I think my first line kinda sums up how I felt about the enjoyment. It was a hilarious show. I'll leave it at that.
Overall (8/10): Yes you may be wondering why it stands at an 8. First off, the story was a little too mediocre in my view and while I did say I would grade off humor, story still factors in. Frankly I can't think of how to make the story any better because there was little solid premise besides the Neighbors Club. Second, I did factor sound more because I felt a review like this take into account more of art and sound. And the opening theme wore me down towards the end. But besides that, it was well worth watching these awkward characters get together and do hilarious things. As usual I am always up for debate but I have to leave one parting gift for this review. MEAT FOR ALL!!!
PS: If you enjoyed this version of critique please message me. I like to choose what anime I review and if my audience prefers this form a review, I will base my pieces as such.
To be honest, I came here looking for just a plain comedy, what I found was a much more. The opening few episodes were genuinely funny. At first the characters don't look particularly fascinating however, as the series progresses they become more and more interesting. Towards the end the anime is set up brilliantly for its next season which would be hard to miss if you completed the first one. An anime to get easily hooked to and one which becomes more interesting as it progresses.
I liked it a lot and overall it is quite nice.
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