During a Literature Club meeting, the four club members—along with their faculty adviser's niece—suddenly find themselves with supernatural powers. Now capable of fabricating black flames, resident chuunibyou Jurai Andou is the most ecstatic about their new abilities; unfortunately, his own is only for show and unable to accomplish anything of substance. Moreover, he is completely outclassed by those around him: fellow club member Tomoyo Kanzaki manipulates time, Jurai's childhood friend Hatoko Kushikawa wields control over the five elements, club president Sayumi Takanashi can repair both inanimate objects and living things, and their adviser's niece Chifuyu Himeki is able to create objects out of thin air.
However, while the mystery of why they received these powers looms overhead, very little has changed for the Literature Club. The everyday lives of these five superpowered students continue on, albeit now tinged with the supernatural.
Moderator Edit: This review may contain spoilers.
Ever go into a burger restaurant, only to realize that it sells some of the most kickass tacos? That's what watching Inou-Battle wa Nichijou-kei no Naka de feels like.
Came in expecting superpower battles, came out having experienced one of the best anime dealing with friendship. Right off the bat, this anime tells a story of a group of normal high schoolers (and one primary schooler) gaining superpowers. For some inexplicable reason, they are now held with the burden of functioning as normal students with these destructive weapons at their disposal. Not surprisingly, this presents quite a problem for them;
and I think that's the purpose these superpowers serve. They were implemented as a device to see how the main male character, Andou, would resist his chuunibyou desires to use his cool-yet-dangerous powers. They were implemented to see how Sayumi, the most level-headed member of the group, would manage this newfound burden as the leader (and so on and so forth). At the end of the day, we didn't get many battles; rather, we received a story of a series of struggles that these high schoolers faced while possessing these powers.
There were many hints of romance throughout the series, but again, they were used as devices to highlight the friendship between the main characters. Tomoyo had to come to terms with her own self, accepting her chuunibyou and not being afraid to be who she was. In order to achieve that, she also had to come to terms with her feelings for Andou, as he was the one who truly allowed her to express herself. In a Sakurasou-like fashion, there was a side-story in which Tomoyo strove to be a light novel publisher. Initially hesitant, with the support of Andou, she boldly put her name out there (and got pretty damn far!). It's amazing how much an anime (that's technically a romance-comedy) can teach me about hard work and dedication. At the end of the day, it's not about how far you get; it's about how far you extended your efforts. Because of that, Tomoyo didn't have anything to regret, and Andou acknowledged her regardless.
Another "romance" of Inou-Battle came in the form of Hatoko's relationship with Andou. Admittedly, while watching her interactions with Andou, I could greatly relate to a lot of the frustrations she had. Unable to relate to Andou (due to not having the same interests--see: chuunibyou), she was hopelessly trying to grab his attention, and yet, unable to do so. So frustrating a effort finally culminated in one of the most emotional seiyuu performances I have ever seen in an anime. So much emotion was put into every word; I truly understood the magnitude of Hatoko's frustration. I would dare say this scene alone makes Inou-Battle worth the watch (for those curious, it is in episode 7). At the end of the series, Hatoko didn't fully understand the person whom she affectionately calls "Ju-Kun"; despite that, she certainly had matured as a character and became infinitely better at understanding those different from herself.
With the final episode, I think most who had been following Inou-Battle weekly would agree that there was a huge surprise; there was an actual battle with strategy! Indeed, a lot of confusion was cleared up with the explanations in the final battle, and it showed that there was a maturation process all the characters had to go through (especially Andou) in order to learn how to manage their powers. At the end of Inou-Battle, I think there are two main takeaways: with power comes the need for great responsibility, and friendships only strengthen when friends take the time to talk things out. Rather than harboring a silence anger, voicing frustrations is often the best thing that could happen for a friendship. It was a definite pleasure to watch such characters as Hatoko learn how to better relate to others, Tomoyo learn how to be honest with herself, and Andou learn how to balance chuunibyou with maturity.
With Inou-Battle, don't look forward to supernatural battles. Instead, look forward to deep themes of hard work, responsibility, self-honesty, and friendship. Inou-Battle will deliver.
When Supernatural battles become commonplace.
That's the title of this anime but it is highly misleading, I repeat, it's HIGHLY MISLEADING.
There are no supernatural battles in this anime. This anime is your average romcom harem anime situated in school and the characters all belong to the literature club.
One day, the members of a literature club get superpowers. There superpowers are such, that if it were an action, shounen anime, it would be epicly amazing. But as it turns out, you only get to see the powers being used for fun and in a few episodes. Most of the series is spent in the romcom lives
of the characters as they pass through everyday troubles.
The characters are quite nice. They've got there own stories and all of them have affection for the protagonist and there's quite a bit of comedy. Each character is unique in his/her own way.
This series is meant to be seen as a romcom series. I picked it up thinking there would be good action with some romcom because who doesn't like superpowered action harem romcom anime. But there is barely any action in it. But the romcom is good enough to enjoy.
Overall, it's not a loss. Nor it's as awesome as other fall anime. But it's a good watch. But still, it could've been a lot better.
Okay, for starters just going to get this out of the way. Caps for emphasis. THIS IS NOT A SHOW ABOUT BIG BATTLES USING SUPER POWERS. This is a slice of life and a harem/romantic comedy. This is a show about a club of friends and them developing powers is more of a background setting thing. Apparently a lot of people missed this completely when they decided to watch it. Taking that into account, I found the show to be quite enjoyable and cute. Some pretty funny bits but not too much that made me laugh out loud.
Regarding the harem aspect, there's next to no fan-service so it manages to avoid many of the same harem tropes seen in countless other shows (for example, the "Oh no you tripped and grabbed my boobs/walked in on me while bathing" = scream + slap routine). The slice of life aspect is mostly just their club activities or episodes mostly centered around a few of the girls at a time. Things move pretty slow.
Moving on, the MC isn't a spineless self insert or a pervert either, you can actually understand why these girls are all falling for him. When he decides to drop the chunni bit and act serious, he is insanely good at saying the right things and just happens to keep raising their affection levels. It's entirely possible that he could talk himself into a harem ending without realizing it and getting hogtied by the girls.
For the girls, I found them each to have their own personality and problems and were pretty decently done. Childhood friend gets a special mention just because she has the usual jealousy issue that gets old, but it's flavored by more reasons than just him getting along with another girl.
All that said, this show is by no means perfect. There's really no plot, just something shoehorned into the setting (that probably fit better in the source material) that gets needlessly distracting. Also the show really is all about the girls falling for the MC. Best just to view it as a romcom. Not surprisingly there isn't much of an ending either. Not a cliffhanger, but not any resolutions to the main plot. Personally I wasn't bothered by it since the plot didn't really feel like it fit in this show anyways.
What do you get when you put a group of girls with extraordinary powers and a guy with nothing but an ordinary flame that he likes to brag about? The answer is Inou Battle Wa Nichijoukei No Naka De. Literally meaning ‘When Supernatural Battles Became Commonplace’, this show based on the light novel of the same name adapted by Trigger pulls off this strangely yet addictive gimmick to grip your eyes to the screen. And how does it do that? It’s those supernatural battles and the characters that gets involved in them as part of a common place ritual.
The series’ title speak for itself as
the very first episode quickly demonstrates the female characters in this show are ladies you don’t want to mess with. In essence, they have supernatural powers ranging from time manipulation, elemental abilities, healing/repairing objects, or even creating object themselves. Simply put, these girls are part of this group known as the Senko High School's Literature Club but there’s one oddball in the mix: Jurai Ando. Unlike the others, he is an ordinary kid who pretends that he has powers. If you ever remember watching ‘Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai!’ before, then you’ll get the general idea. Just replace the words of ‘Dark Flame Master’ with Dark Flame Dark; a seemingly useless flame that is spawned from his imaginations. Despite the wacky way the show handles itself, there’s also surprisingly a strong degree of fun that viewers can get out of this series.
It all starts with our characters. While Ando isn’t anything extraordinary, he does have an innate ability to influence people whether he knows it or not. His interactions with the members of the Literature Club often provides a genuine amount of comedy. In fact, every episode generates some sort of new gimmick that involves most of the characters. No one is left behind in the dark as Ando is able to create ways for him to get involved despite being different from them. This even applies to supporting characters such as the student council president Mirei Kudo when she misunderstands a situation that ends up being much complicated than it should be. But surprisingly enough, the show doesn’t kill off this sub-plot but actually provide some genuine moments of honesty. In retrospect, the show is self-aware of itself and is able to balance between the comedy and dramatic moments; a feat that is quite something for a show such as this.
When it comes to the girls, this show qualifies for cliché to the max. We have the tsundere Tomoyo, the polite airhead Hatoko, the book nerd Sayumi, and the playful Chifuyu. All of their personalities contrast from one another but are somehow all able to co-exist as a group together. And unlike most series with similarities, Inou Battle appeals more to lighthearted comedy by employing the characters’ gimmicks. Examples are evidence with clever jokes involving Ando and any of these girls or as a whole. Although he ends up being a butt monkey on occasions, the girls are appreciate for his presence and are interested in him as a person. At times, the show gets a bit crazy for its own good but that really never drowns what it’s trying to accomplish: to create genuine comedy for appealing entertainment. Thanks to our characters, we get most of that.
Individually, the main characters also get their backgrounds fleshed out and spotlights throughout the series. Various episodes explores their personalities and brings out challenges like common place. The thrill of the show doesn’t rely on what might come next from guessing. Instead, it lies at where the viewers may feel being part of such a story with its expositions. It’s also noticeable that Ando once again plays key roles as part being of each episode. Rather than standing in the sidelines or becoming a victim, he plays the role of a guardian angel to help the helpless. It’s also ironic since he is the one without the powers and is able to help the girls who are blessed with these supernatural gifts, no?
Despite crafting a bucket load of fun and laughter, the show can be hard to get used to after a while for some. Characters are still one-dimensional and doesn’t escape its harem-esque tropes. It should be obvious but all the main girls seems to have an implied crush on Ando. These also are mixed with various reactions ranging from jealousy, to loneliness, to even aggression (See Hatoko’s ragefest episode). However, the show is lighthearted so it doesn’t steer its wheel too far onto the drama road. The back stab is that it can hardly be taken seriously in this manner. Sure, there are moments where we feel compelled to realize these emotions but most of it is still covered by the immense amount of comedy. At later stages of the show, even the comedy seems to be a bit diehard and loses its momentum. The superpowers gimmicks also dies down considerably to a point where the show almost seems like a slice of life. Ando himself doesn’t improve much either as he still tries to go die-hard with his chuunibyou behavior. Despite standing out more than a dull average boy, he is also oblivious to the girls’ feelings which leads to generic moments of misunderstandings and saturated nonsense. Speaking of which, the romance aspect of this show should be treated as a bad joke. While it shouldn’t be taken account as a shoujo fest of love angles, the series still makes the romance look like a silly slab of bland cliché collection.
You’ve heard about them before and seen what they can do. Studio Trigger takes a crack at this light novel adaptation as one of their first non-original series. The end result is satisfactory when it comes to artwork although nothing astonishingly remarkable. Let’s face it, the backgrounds looks goofy and hardly noticeable with its generic school setting. However, the character designs offer a fun degree of diversity. Tossing Ando aside (since he is the most dull looking character), the girls are illustrated well in suit of their personalities and roles. During ‘action’ and ‘fighting scenes’, the series tries its best to make it look real with various degrees of success. Fan service is also limited although there are a few occasions of suggestive camera angles; usually aimed at cosplay gimmicks in particular one episode and swimsuit shenanigans.
Background music doesn’t play a huge role in the show but the character voices do when it comes to their roles. While Ando is a dull-looking boy, he brings in an immense amount of energy with his personality. Similarly, the girls create an atmosphere of recreational fun with their casual way of speech mannerisms. They say what’s on their mind and often does it without repetitiveness. I give praise to the ensemble cast of our characters (including Ando) for their ability to draw in viewers at what they try to achieve. On the other hand, the OP and ED songs aren’t very appealing. While it is cute and has a decent amount of colorful attractiveness, there’s nothing special about it with its generic themes.
To say the least, this show isn’t for everyone. If you’re used to some of Trigger’s previous work, then you will find Inou Battle to be somewhat different. I don’t mean it different at its premise but rather the gimmicks the show holds when it comes to connecting its characters. Still, the characters makes up a bulk of what you can enjoy from this show. Now, fuse that with comedy and with every day common stories and you’ll get entertainment at its most definite form. Just be aware though that the show isn’t trying to drive a story with an ultimatum. Instead, it celebrates supernatural culture in way that doesn’t involve high level battles to save the world.
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