The Neighbors' Club never ceases to amuse me at times and in this OVA, what can I say? They did that once again:
Bringing entertainment in that Haganai way.
It's been about a year since we've seen the cruel dark haired Yozora, the blonde meat Sena, Necromancer's biggest fan Kobato, the tough looking yet gentle hearted Kodaka, and...the others. Yes, the gang is back in this special episode to bring forth some entertainment just before the big Season 2 hits the horizon.
Series like Haganai in the anime industry getting an OVA should be no surprise. The original series is quite popular with a later
manga adaptation that landed 7th place on the top 30 of Japanese Comic Rankings with its debut of the second volume. Furthermore, the series' anime adaptation has spawned the development of a visual novel that sold over 50,000 units. As such, this little bonus here should be a refreshment of what the Neighbor's Club was, is, and will be in the future.
Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai/Haganai: Add-on Disc (also known as I Don't Have Many Friends: Add-on Disc) is a special unaired episode produced by AIC Build. Of course, special episode in today's anime industries are usually filled with fan-service and other eye candy scenes. Although this episode doesn't have the theme of the generic beach, sleepovers, or onsen themes, it does have something else we might not expect in the form that is more defined as literal comedy.
The episode is like this:
You take a novel, put thoughts and imaginations into it, add the characters/settings in, and the gags as well as the comedy and fan-service. Then, after all that, present it to the audience visually. What do you get? This special Haganai episode.
Indeed, this special episode has a lot of comedy and gags that is presented in the way of novel relay telling. With their imaginations, the Neighbor Club is at it again. They write this novel out of their imaginations or maybe more based on their personal ideologies. It's hard to explain it but let's just say that the club has some generic yet fun ideas.
Yozora and Sena retains their rivalry like the tiger and the dragon in this special episode as well. They bring the heat of their rivalry in the novels they write this time around in the form of medieval warfare involving tentacle rape, obese beast, angels, and foot licking. It's hard to take this serious at all considering that it's so generic and commonly seen in most OVAs. Not just that though, the other characters' stories are based on their own imaginations in the most bizarre ways ranging from a girl in the lake to mecha absurdity from outer space. Still though, it was pretty damn funny.
The artwork of the special episode retains the same edges and style. There's nothing different really, not even in the novels themselves. One can expect though that Haganai isn't a top contender in the artwork department so don't expect spectacular visuals.
On the other hand, the soundtrack features more of a ensemble especially at the end. The OP song still retains its originality though and it's a billboard of saying “the Neighbor Club is still here and we're not going anywhere till we make some friends”. The soundtrack is pretty fun to listen to and an amusing refreshment of the series.
Overall, this special episode is like a warmup for the big marathon. By that, I mean a little preview of the comedy and entertainment of what's to come for Season 2. You want some cruelty? Yozora is there. You want some meat? Sena says hi. You want some cosplay? Kobato greets you. Ultimately, special episode like this isn't special but has a lot of humor to it. There's nothing wrong with having a good laugh and Haganai can bring forth a lot of that. So, expect 20+ minutes of Neighbor Club fun thrown at your face.
To those who are planning to watch this you should have already watched the original series and at least sort of liked it. If you haven't watched it yet, watch the original series ( btw you should nearly always watch originals before sequels)
Simply Amazing. Hilarious. Funny. Enjoyable.
Add ons rarely have a story but usually just show your favorite characters in a fun fashion you have not yet seen in.
That is what this OVA does. The characters are able to do insane things, in the form of a story. If you liked the original series you will probably like this too.
Conclusion: You should definitely watch this
for comedy, mindless fun and easy to get jokes. Also it is just fun to watch how the characters interact and overreact and their way of teamwork.
Some OVAs seek to give a series a greater sense of conclusion. Other OVAs are an excuse to turn a series into Hentai. This OVA doesn't seem to quite do either of those. Haganai's OVA is simply another episode, and one which neither advances the story line nor brings any character development to the table; it's purely fan service and I emphasize- for fans only. If you aren't unhealthily attached to any of the main characters in the main series, then this may not be worth your time.
The animation quality is on par with the main series, though you're going to get some really wacky
outfits and (very ecchi) mechs? There's a serious effort to parody other series, which I'll let the viewed discover for him/herself, sometimes embedded in the visuals. The series' only absolution is the liberal airtime given to Sena. As in the main series, expect significant ecchi - though this one goes pretty close to full H.
You have the same OP as the parent series and the VA cast is identical as well. They add a new ED sung by the cast, which has an annoyingly-repetitive main melody.
We find our loners club on a typical day where they decide to take turns writing a single short story. This soon turns into everyone's individual fantasy involving Kodaka as they churn out the most in-cohesive story ever written. While certain parts are amusing, the overall plot is quite lame and contributes absolutely nothing to the overall series. I'll admit I'm a bit biased as I was hoping for a bit more relevance given the less-than-stellar ending to the parent series.
While each character does get air time, their interactions are as you would expect from the main series. Their interactions are still fun to watch, but I think the series missed a great opportunity to give some more background on Rika/Yukimura.
Other than for base entertainment and/or fan service, this doesn't add much to the parent franchise, for dedicated fans of the main show only.