Otaku siblings Tamotsu and Niwaka Denkigai are shopping in Akihabara when it is overrun by vampiric cosplaying monsters! These creatures, known as "Bugged Ones," can possess anyone they bite and soon they begin causing mayhem across the city. As Tamotsu finds himself at the mercy of one of these creatures, he is rescued by the mysterious baseball bat-wielding Matome Mayonaka. Together, they fight through several more encounters with the Bugged Ones, but before long, Tamotsu is fatally wounded protecting Matome. With no other choice, she revives him as a high level Bugged One—just like her!
Tamotsu and Matome, along with excitable otaku cosplayer Arisa Ahokainen, make up the group "The Electric Mayonnaise" and they begin dispatching the Bugged Ones in the only way they know how: by ripping off their clothes and exposing them to sunlight!
Ah, Akihabara. Otaku center of the world. Filled to the brim with anime, manga, video games, computer goods, maid cafés, and vampires.
Akiba's Trip The Animation feels like a love letter to Akiba and every nerdy interest you can think of. Is it a masterful work of writing? No. Is it thought provoking? No. Is it enjoyable? I'd like to think so. Isn't that why we watch anime? To enjoy ourselves?
The premise is quite simple. Akiba has been overrun by vampires known as "Bugged Ones" and the only way to defeat them is to strip them of their clothes and expose them to sunlight. Depending
on your tolerance for fan service there's your indication as to whether or not you should bother starting the show. However, for those coming in because they're thinking the show will have the same amount of fan service as Prison School for example, you'll be disappointed as the fan service is quite minimal considering the premise of the show.
The show's strongest asset in my eyes is how much heart it feels went into the show. As previously mentioned the show is a love letter to Akiba and every nerdy interest you can think of. Computers, card games, audiophiles, Street Fighter, wrestling, and more. Every episode is an affectionate parody of these subcultures and is both the show's biggest strength and weakness. If you're familiar with what they happen to be parodying that episode you will enjoy yourself immensely, but if not, you might feel like you're being left out of the joke. This results in each episode being quite hit or miss. Not every episode will be a hit, but when they are, my God do they hit.
This love and passion for these interests leads to a payoff when it comes to the show's comedy. The accuracy of the wrestling tropes. A person's descent into becoming an audiophile. How a card game looks for people who know what's going on vs people who don't know a thing about the game. They know what will make people who enjoy these interests laugh and they make good use of that knowledge. The show knows how stupid it is and revels in by going completely over the top whenever possible. It's not afraid to poke fun at itself either by occasionally referencing various characteristics of the show itself. It's all comedic gold.
The characters aren't particularly complex and developed, but would you expect anything different? That's not to say they’re walking tropes however. Tamotsu escapes being a bland nerd MC and Arisa shows off her loyalty when faced with an important decision. It's not much, but it's something. But frankly in a show like this the development and complexity of the characters isn't important. What is important however is how likable they are. The group is full of energy and enthusiasm when the times are good, and when push comes to shove they'll go out of their way to show how much they care about each other.
Could I talk about the art or the sound? Sure, probably. But frankly they're not remarkably good or bad enough to justifying writing about and I don't see a point in telling you something is completely average just for the sake of padding out the amount of words in this review.
For me Akiba's Trip has been the surprise of the season and was a complete joy to watch. The show knew what it wanted to achieve and passed with flying colours. It's goofy, it's fun, it's energetic, it's hilarious, it's Akiba's Trip.
Sometimes an anime comes along that changes your perspective of the media. It questions your core values, your beliefs and makes you wonder will we ever see another anime like this. For some it can leave an empty void making you wonder what will you watch next.
But enough about incredible shows like Steins;Gate and Legend of the Galactic Heroes, Im sadly here to review Akiba's Trip.
I would like for everyone to remember at this point that a Review involves expressing ones opinion. If you don't like it? Well good for you, I'll give you a chocolate digestive if I see you around (and a cup
of tea, gotta keep up the British Stereotype) .
Story ?/10 -
This anime involves ripping off someone's clothes to win. Now when you read that your first thought is most likely "I am sure I didn't tick R18?" or "Have I ended up on the weird part of the internet again?". Sadly no, otherwise I would of closed the browser and wouldn't have lost a piece of my soul...... I am fairly certain a 4 year old could create a better basis than this show has.
Before the keyboard defenders type "But you rated this higher than Akibas Trip!" or "If you don't like ecchi why are you watching?", I don't know a sad curiousity at how ludicrously awful something can get? And clearly I also have no life.
The comedy throughout the entirety of this show feels so forced it's so awkward to watch.......I can't really give the story rating because is ripping off clothes really an anime story? It's just failed soft core pornography.
Did the studio think they struck gold with this concept? "Oh yay stripping clothes off people to win. Sure to give us lots of money!" . Oh wait anime is either just for kids or hentai right? Course they thought that. Imagine going 25 years as studio and this is how you celebrate.
Characters Non-Existent/10 -
Oh yay! Characters......I honestly reckon placing cones or cardboard cutouts of characters in place of the ones in this show would provide as much to the story. It would get rid of the fan service too. Infact lets just put cute puppies in place instead? Least then i can go awww cute....
Art 1/10 -
Oh boy the art! This is where the show....."shines" . I think the studio had the same thoughts as me when it came to the art. They made a few characters correctly then got bored, realised they were wasting away with an awful show and just randomly drew characters like a spoiled child who had enough of his expensive toy. It reached the stage where I honestly felt like they were attempting to troll people watching it got that bad.
Sound 2/10 -
It's got more than a 1 out of 10! Thank you so much EARPHONES.....You were the hero we needed, but maybe the one we didn't deserve for doing an opening that for 1 minute 30 seconds, I embraced the wonder of thinking I was watching something interesting. Sadly after the opening I came crashing down to reality faster than , realising the music for this is very poor.
Enjoyment ?/10 -
The enjoyment on this show depends on one thing....Whether you watch alone or in a group. If you want in a group, suffering together with someone will make the pain more bearable. Watching alone is something I do not recommend.......
Fun fact the studio that did Akiba's Trip also did Welcome to the N.H.K and Afro Samurai. Oh the mighty have fallen to quote the Dark Knight himself "You either die a hero, or live long enough to become the villian." If you plan on watching Akiba's Trip, I recommend instead you go find yourself a great wall (not Trumps.....But a wall) , and watch that instead. I can tell you for certain, its more enteraining.
The beautiful thing about comedy is that it's subjective. It's an extremely wide topic where there're a multitude of ways to go about it, with the main goal being getting those watching or listening to laugh at the end. So, how does one go about making the ridiculous plot of stripping off peoples' clothes entertaining? Well, by shoving in references of course.
Story: Akihabara, the place of hopes and dreams is threatened by an unseen threat. Bugged ones, creatures who lurk in the dark, seek to take over the otaku capital and rule over it by their own laws and values.
In order to beat them, one must expose the people they inhabit to light. Which means, strip the person to their undergarments. But never fear, the team consisting of three teenagers and a middle schooler known as Electric Mayonnaise is here! Oh god, we're still screwed aren't we?
Based on a game series with the same name, Akiba's Trip The Animation takes the gameplay elements of fighting the enemies by stripping them in the Akihabara setting and nothing else. The entire series is made with completely new characters and features a storyline entirely of one-off episodic adventures that each feature a theme pertaining to either one part of Otaku culture with varying degrees of comedic success. Each episode acts like its own zany and wacky adventure where the characters always end up fighting a Bugged One as the episode's "Final Boss" before returning back to their normal lives and back to the status quo of the series.
Comedy comes in the form of exaggeration and quickly timed jokes that snap in and out as fast as they come. Due to the show's fast-paced nature, the show never sits on one joke for too long, and keeps going along with the series's momentum to make sure keep the audience engaged to the end. Though the jokes can be hit or miss both depending on what you're a fan of (since they cover quite a wide variety of topics), and due to how blunt and not subtle everything is, the show is very consistent on how it wants to do things and doesn't falter on what it wants to deliver.
And that's...all there is. Packed full of references (both real world and from other series'), Akiba's Trip The Animation is quite simply a sporadic episodic story that uses the exact same storyline for each episode with the only variation being how the story is set up, what each episode's theme is, and what kind of boss they're fighting in the end. There honestly isn't much to say.
+/- Episodic storyline (depends on your taste)
+/- Blunt, fast-paced comedy (depends on your taste)
Characters: Development is very slim for the characters in Akiba's Strip, as the fast-paced comedic nature of the series makes it very difficult for any meaningful development to happen to any of its characters.
Electric Mayonnaise, the titular group of the series, consists of 3 (technically 5?) members. Mayonaka Matome is a Bugged One who fights to save Akihabara from those that want to take the district for themselves, Tamotsu Denkigai is an otaku turned Bugged One who's more than happy to defend Akihabara and save it from potential doom, and Ahokainen Arisa is a blonde foreigner who's basically a Mary Sue, capable of doing...almost everything (somehow) while cosplaying at every chance she has. In short, what you see is what you get, as their characters barely change throughout the entire series. If anything, you get to learn more about their personalities and what they've done, but beyond that, there's nothing much to say. The other two characters that are technically part of Electric Mayonnaise are Denkigai Niwaka, Tamotsu's little sister, and the professor, who's this tiny girl with a large labcoat on a segeway. Likewise, what you see is what you get, and like the main trio, are characters that barely change in the series.
The Bugged Ones that act as villains in the series are quite simple. They all want to take over Akihabara in some strange yet convoluted manner. They act more like the episode's final boss that our main characters must fight at the episode's climax more than anything, and have very little beyond their characters beyond their motivation to rule Akiba.
There're quite a number of side characters in this show, spanning shokeepers in Akiba, to random characters that get featured in the series once or twice that all add one or two things to the series, culminating to the spastic feel that is this show. They're not really all that important, but they help spice what's already there.
+ Defined, entertaining characters
- Entire cast is one note
Art: Produced by Gonzo, Akiba's Trip boasts a colorful, erratic, and wild artsyle that further compliments the comedy of the series. Everything from the characters' movements to the the backgrounds and settings is done in a distracting yet entertaining way that compliments the fast paced nature of the series. Though the show isn't always consistent in this manner. The background audience for a large majority of the scenes are white figures with smiley faces rather than handdrawn characters, so in this regard, while it fits to the outlandish nature that this show boasts, has hit or miss qualities.
Fanservice is actually quite common in this show, which isn't very surprising when the show is about stripping people naked to save a district in Japan. Though they're blatant with it, fanservice doesn't actually come all that often, and when it's done, it's not so overglorified that it detracts from the show, though that does happen on occasion.
What I think where the art really exceeds expectations is in some of the real life references that they were able to execute in this show. First off, they got real life sponsors to make cameos. Not only that, but in one episode, they were able to get real footage from Street Fighter V of all things in their show. Now these might not be too difficult to obtain, but the fact that the show was able to get some stuff from real life into the show was in my eyes, pretty cool, especially since most anime that do something like this make their own parody versions to avoid copyright and other legal problems.
+ Colorful and crazy art to fit the show
+ They legit got Capcom to let them use Street Fighter footage in an episode
- Laziness in some aspects of the art
Sound: As far as sound goes, Akiba's Trip's OP has a high energy beat reflective of that to the series it comes from. Complete with idol singing and a clear fast beat, the OP is, while isn't all that memorable when not put on repeat, is a nice, fast song to listen to. EDs in Akiba's Trip vary, as roughly each episode has its own ED with the main draw of all of them being the fact that they're all idol songs. Similarly, not as memorable as they could be, but still nice listens.
Personal Enjoyment: If you ask me, I'll tell you that Akiba's Trip is a stupid, pointless show that has no value aside from being brainless entertainment. And that's precisely why I love it. The show to an extent is self-aware of its own merits and it owns up to them, enhancing its dumb and energetic self to create a fun to watch show that despite not being serious in the slightest, can still be enjoyable. I liked it, and more important than anything, I enjoyed and had fun with it.
Did I like this anime?
Oh far too much. The fact that the show was self-aware of its own stupidity made it that much easier to enjoy its random episodes. In particular, the episode where they talk about card games (I think it was episode 8) was the episode that resonated with me the most. Not only that, but I like Mayonaka as a character.
What didn't I like about this anime?
Honestly, there wasn't really much to hate for me. I wouldn't call this one of my favorite series, but I had so much fun watching this show that I really had no reason to dislike it at all for any reason.
Would I recommend this anime?
If you're into stupid, brainless, and sporadic comedy shows like me, then Akiba Strip is a pretty good pick. Its episodic nature and completely non-serious demeanor makes this show a fun venture to watch. Though same with all comedy, it is subjective to a specific audience, so if you're not a fan of in your face humor, then this is probably not the show for you.
If you know the game that this anime is based on you'd expect it to be fanservice city.Well let me warn you, it's not. There is some fanservice here and there and it can be quite nice but this show does not live and die off of fanservice. It actually lives and breathes off of comedy. And it is really good at it.
The comedy of Akiba's Trip is specialized and really out there. They don't settle with just making a job plain they really go all the way out there and really proclaim it. The fiendish plans range from silly but plausible to WTF HOW
DO YOU THINK THIS WOULD WORK!? And it works because each plan is more stupid than the last until it gets to the point of just HOWWW. Everything is exaggerated in this show. The farther into each episode the more exaggerated it gets. It's great to see all the twists and turns that they throw in. Not only do they throw in great exaggerations but they also model it to fit into the realm of okatuness that they are covering for the episode. This acts as a celebration of okatu culture which is a novel idea. Furthermore, it does so in unique and fun ways only adding to the joy of each episode.
Aiding the comedy is a great cast of characters. Each one of them feels refreshing and interesting in their own rights. Tomatsu is not the typical self-insert bland MC. He's super dedicated to one thing at a time, and with push himself to do the best at that one task, showing an unusual amount of drive. He's also a complete hipster. His cell phone looks dated. He's always looking up alternative methods to do the okatu habits that he enjoys rather than sticking to the tried and true. This makes him that much more interesting as a character.
His little sister Niwaka is also great. It's clear that she loves Tomatsu as a sibling but it never goes beyond that. She wants him but she doesn't cling to him, nor is what she does defined by him. She also hangs out more with the other girls that surround Tomatsu as well. Even if she has some of the imouto traits, she's refreshing as she's honest and doesn't define herself only by her onii-chan, rather she feels like a real sister who does care for her brother. (She's also not annoying and she doesn't try to push him into things, she's a pretty cool person.)
Mayo and Arisa are also both great characters. They all have likeable charm to them even though Mayo does stay in the tsundere character. (Although she does grow warmer over the span of the show.) Overall the characters all have their own likeable charms while still sticking to a general role. While they aren't the most developed they are refreshing and fun and thusly enjoyable.
I'd argue the plot is pretty cool too. The general plot leaves open a hype ending as well as provides the context for the fun of the episodic nature of the show. The comedy is enhanced by the episodic nature because they can keep on making things more extreme which each episode, using the same formula and providing twists to keep it fun. All it all it creates a nice structure for the show to work with, which helps its success.
It also happens to have some nice sorta unexpected development which I quite enjoyed.
The animation I feel like it pretty strong and the art can be quite humorous. Some of the character designs are really well done while others are quite funny in their simplicity. It's enjoyable to see the wide range of character designs they have from cool to cute, to silly simple. The music is also pretty good too. I wouldn't call the OST great but there are some nice memorable tracks which help the show out.
All and all it's a great show with the ability to provide refreshing characters, a nice plot and development and most importantly a lot of good comedy. And it provides all of this while also giving a supporting message to Okatu culture. A message that we shouldn't judge others for what we do because we're all working off our passion and that's great. I'd recommend it if you'd like a fun and silly show. It's quite a good one.