From standing in the sun for hours to traveling miles away from home, gorgeous high school student Koizumi stops at nothing to fulfill her desire for ramen. But these previously solo trips soon change when Koizumi's classmate Yuu Oosawa develops an infatuation with her, and begins to join Koizumi uninvitedly on her adventures. As Yuu continues to be shocked by Koizumi's enormous appetite, she learns about the endless variety of ramen from, arguably, its greatest connoisseur ever!
I love CGDCT. It's one of my favorite genres and provides a fun, happy viewing experience. Whether it be one that does a lot to make the characters stand out and relate their personal struggles while also keeping it fun, or whether it be one that diverts away from more developmental aspects just to have fun I find the genre to be rewarding to watch. There are even some CGDCT that do very little outside of the bare minimum that are still fun to watch due to the joy that I get from watching cute friends being friendly with each other.
I state this for a
reason. Sometimes in reviews you get people who don't like the genre coming in and trashing a show that was never made to appeal to their interests. That isn't the case here. I really enjoy CGDCT, and even a bad one can have moments worth watching.
Or so I thought. Because Ramen Daisuki is completely lacking in anything that makes it worth watching.
It's terrible from top to bottom. To the point that now whenever I watch a lackluster CGDCT I think to myself: "Well at least it's not as bad as Ramen Daisuki."
In my eyes the life blood of a CGDCT show is the characters and their interactions. And here we run into the first major problem of Ramen Daisuki. The chararacters are all extremely one-note. The main girl likes ramen, and that's all there is to her character. Yuu loves the main girl who likes ramen, and that's all there is to her character. Then there's the tsundere, and the bookworm, and.. that's it. There's nothing more to any of these characters. They never act outside of their formula. They never get development. They never even get notable moments with each other.
Ramen Daisuki isn't the only CGDCT to have one-note characters. And while I Don't like those one-note characters usually most CGDCT are able to recover with the execution of the character interactions. Sure the genki girl and reserved quiet girl pair may be cliche at this point but it works. It's always nice to see someone will a friend out of their shell with pure love and support. Usually there's an element of fun and folly that are present in their interactions, which makes them fun to watch even if there isn't anything that breaks the mold, or develops the characters.
But Ramen Daisuki can't even manage to do that right. The characters go together like ramen and chocolate: they don't. While most CGDCT focus on fun or heartwarming interactions Ramen Daisuki doesn't do either of those. Rather it decides to let ramen be the fore focus. The only thing that they talk about is ramen. And sure I get the show is about ramen but that doens't mean it should be the only thing that the characters talk about, or experience. Life is not made up of just ramen no matter how much one of the characters may like it. Even their ramen based interactions are lackluster. The stalker girl basically tries to case after the main character over and over again and is constantly rebuked only to be "let in" when the main character has to correct her about some stupid thing she said about ramen. While it's not the only show that has a push and pull between its main characters, usually there are large signs that the more reserved character is either a tsundere, or shy. They want that love, whether they know it or not and slowly warm up to the other party. This isn't true in Ramen Daisuki. The only time Ramen lover shows any sort of like towards the stalker is when she makes her ramen. The only characters also have just as lackluster and uninteresting interactions. It's hard to imagine any of them being friends due to the deficent of friendship bonding that appears in the show.
While character interactions are a huge thing in CGDCT, there is the other option which is winning via worldbuilding and atmosphere. Of which there is none. The only world that exists here is the next ramen shop that they need to get to.
Even on a foodie level this show fails. Sure the ramen looks good but when you spend 12 episodes doing nothing but showing uninteresting flat characters eating ramen it's bound to fall flat. There's no variation, it's only ramen. Most food shows are able to cover an array of food and really bring out the food porn fo the yummy food they're eating, but ramen daisuki is only focusing on ramen ever. And while they try to spice it up with all sorts of different types when these different types necessitate long spheals explaining what they are, it quickly devolves into uninteresting territory. I'm not sure who thought lectures would be funner to watch than characters interacting with each other but whoever did needs to be questioned.
The OST is also awful. They repeat the same songs over and over again when they already weren't that good to begin with. On their own they're already lackluster ut when they appear for the thousandth time it's noticeably annoying, which is obviously not what a show should be going for. The songs are very simple and are lacking in flavor. So it makes it worse to hear it every single time.
There's nothing to this show. The characters are flat and uninteresting. It's as if ramen is the only thing that exists in this world, and on top of that the interactions are straight up bad. With bad characters, interactions, and world this show has nothing to offer unless you really want to see ramen. And then you have to put up with the rest just to get that. I'd say save it and go to a nearby store and by some ramen. It'll be much tastier and you won't have to deal with this failure of a show.
Story is Fair (6). There's nothing fancy about the story. It's about a girl obsessed with ramen being stalked by her classmate who is obsessed with her. And a ton of useful? facts about ramen, its history and how to enjoy them best.
Art is Very Good (8). I say very good not in the character department but on how they animate ramen in the story. Each ramen dish is distinct from one another from the color and texture of the soup and noodles, to the side dishes that goes along with them.
Sound is Very Good (8). It
is due to how it induces the feeling that you are in whatever restaurant Koizumi and here classmates dine for a bowl or two of ramen. Additionally, the sound they make while and after finishing a bowl of ramen is hunger inducing. Moreover, the parts wherein things get a bit emotional, has a very nice melody in it that I love to listen to.
Characters are Good (7). I like the cold and nonchalant character of Koizumi, she was made to really standout in the story as she is the main character who devours those bowls after bowls of ramen. The other characters are just fairly there to decorate and make Koizumi stand out in the show. They are very straightforward.
I enjoyed watching all 12 episodes of Ramen Daisuki Koizumi san, and I always look for anything ramen like to eat while or after watching each episode. So please take this as a warning if you decide to binge watch this anime.
In connection to the statement above, I believe that it has done its purpose well which is to make us crave, learn and love one of the dishes Japan is popular for; Ramen!
Once upon a time, there was a girl named Koizumi-san. She loves ramen so much that it became a necessity in her life. The beautiful yet mysterious girl is a master of ramen and has a keen eye to always look for them. Whether it’s from near her home or miles away from civilization, Koizumi is the ramen master of her show.
Do you enjoy comedy gags with little plot but focuses on the elements of its genre? Want to watch a show that features over the top humor related to ramen? You’ve come to the right place! Ramen Daisuki Koizumi-san is as straightforward as it
gets. The show is about a girl named Koizumi-san who is in love with ramen. She’s a ramen hunter and never ceases to explore the world to develop her interests. I have to admit, watching this show feels almost like a journey of discovery.
The first few episodes establishes the principle cast. Koizumi san is the main superstar and has a reserved personality. However, that all changes when she eats ramen and indulges on the thrill of its taste. There’s all types of ramen in this show and her reaction always sells its value thanks to its larger than life humor. It shouldn’t take long at all for the audience to realize that Koizumi is an expert at ramen. Not only does she enjoy ramen but she also knows a wealth of knowledge about them. After being discovered by her classmate Yuu at a ramen shop, we learn more about her and the length she goes to obtain ramen. Watching her climb mountains and sail the high seas to get ramen in her stomach is popcorn entertainment at its finest. Furthermore, Koizumi-san is a brave girl and never shows fear when going into a ramen shop, something that other girls may feel intimidated at first glance. As a student, Koizumi-san is known for her beauty and politeness. She rarely speaks and hardly interacts with others. However, when it’s about ramen, Koizumi-san can talk day and night about it.
Of course, there are also other characters that Koizumi-san happens to bump into throughout her journey. The three prominent ones are Yuu, Jun, and Misa. The character chemistry between them ranges quite differently from each other. For instance, Yuu can be seen as borderline obsessed with Koizumi-san whenever they are together. On the other hand, Jun often questions whether Koizumi-san is normal because of her behavior. Throughout the show, Koizumi-san’s influence changes her in ways that she probably didn’t even realize herself. Finally, there’s Misa, a girl that strives to be popular at school. In her eyes, Koizumi-san is a rival and she seems to have a one-sided rivalry with her. While I can’t say none of these relationships are generic, they are entertaining enough to always turn an eye towards Koizumi-san when she gets involved with them.
I’m not an expert on ramen but the show almost feels like it’s selling itself as a product. Every episode features different ramen with different flavors whether it’s chicken, beef, shrimp, spicy, sour, and among others. There are even some ramen you’ve never heard of like the blue ramen from one of the later episodes. The majority of the show also features info dump with explanations from the ramen master, Koizumi-san herself. That being said, the story itself is lazily written and seems to never been the intention. Every episode will feel the same and there’s no complicated plot about the show from start to finish. Unfortunately, Koizumi-san is more of a one dimensional character that never seems to develop more than what she is on paper. There’s also hardly any background story about her. Instead, the show fully dedicates on getting her over with the audience through her ramen expertise. The other cast members are no better either as they lack depth or mostly exists to bring out the best from Koizumi-san. Finally, the comedy at times can be questionable. It can get old pretty fast after you’ve seen it a few times and it really never tries anything different. It’s hard to stay focused on this show if you fancy for something more than ramen.
Adapted by Studio Gokumi, the show doesn’t lie when it comes to expressing the tastes of ramen. Every time Koizumi-san puts ramen in her stomach, she reacts in a state of ecstasy. To put it simply, it’s foodgasm. The show sells her reactions to make the ramen themselves look good. Character designs for the main cast are very feminine especially the case with Koizumi-san. It’s hard to ignore her with that dazzling blonde hair and gentle face. Surprisingly, the ramen in the show is animated with great detail. From the texture of the toppings to the shape of the ramen, everything about it feels right.
This version of foodgasm needed a diverse voice cast and thankfully, the VA in the show pulls it off. The main voice to pay attention to is Koizumi-san especially when she narrates the info details about ramen. Then, there’s the way other characters react to her that amplifies their personalities in particular Yuu and Misa. The theme songs for the show is colorful and focuses a lot on the ramen theme more than you should expect.
Honestly, I don’t even like ramen that much. They’re not good for health and serves more as a guilty pleasure meal than anything else. However, this show opened my eyes ramen in a way that I didn’t realize before. It’s not the plot that impressed me nor is it the popcorn comedy. Rather, the show was able to sell what it had intended to and I’m a satisfied customer.
It's hard with comedies nowadays. Be it their lack of original characters or overusing the same jokes over and over again, you can certainly find a lot of reasons to critisise them. And while that critisism takes it too far at certain times when people forget about what comedies are mainly supposed to be about, it is a required thing to do in goal of making non-moe comedies rise to the top again. Because outside of Gintama, they haven't been on the top for a while.
Which brigns us to a very important question. Does Ramen Daisuki Koizumi-san improve my opinion on the modern non-moe comedies?
No, it doesn't. In fact, RDK most likely contains most of the flaws that have rissen recently on this historicaly popular genre. And even though that doesn't necesarilly mean that Koizumi-san is a bad anime, the fact that it's just another 'cheap' comedy without any ambition is the thing that hurts it the most.
The anime is, as the name suggest, about a girl Koizumi-san, who really likes ramen. She likes it so much infact, that you really question yourself if she eats anything besides the traditional Japanese food. But that's not really the point. Koizumi is cold towards people, doesn't give a damn about things not related to her hobby (ramen eating) and I don't think I've ever seen her smile. She's also very beautiful, which is why the second main character of this show Yuu takes interest in her.
Well, interest. It's more like obssesion honestly. Yuu falls in love right after seeing her and starts following her everywhere she goes. Stalking is on her daily basis. She does that in order to get closer to Koizumi. Who herself doesn't want that, because as she says, she enjoys ramen more when she's alone. And considering she's doing that 24/7, it gets a bit awkward. Which all sets up the comedy that is about to last for the whole show. Comedy that is suprisingly not bad at all at the start, as the show has some nice gags during interactions between Yuu and Koizumi and can build around those two quite well. As it happens however, it sadly isn't able to keep producing good and original jokes for the whole thing and so it gets less and less funny as it goes on.
One of the things that were supposed to avoid that are some of the side characters. Especially Misa and Jun, that appear quite alot. While I don't thing their existence hurt the purpose of the show directly, they only add to one of the main problems of Koizumi-san. And that is the genericity of characters. We have an emotionless beauty, a lousy and high-pitched chick with twintails and a cheerfull but dumb second main lead to even out what Koizumi brings. All of these wouldn't be that big of a problem, it they weren't so over-used in all shows nowadays. Especially the loud twin-tail girl, I feel somebody like that appears in 90% of comedies lately. Like the whole show, the characters themselves are not necessarily bad. But they are just so one-way and forgettable that you don't really care about them in any way.
In which we can get to be whole premise of the show, which is of course ramen. The way show approaches the whole ramen thing is a bit interesting, because it itself knows that 12 episodes about eating ramen can't really produce much in terms of quality content, so it atleast tries to give you something from the history of the food itself and inform you about it's different variations. Which there a tons. Honestly I didn't even know you could have so many flavors of ramen and there are some which just don't make any sence at all. But since the show said they're good, I ain't gonna doubt it. Because if anything, ramen is the one thing in which the creators know what they're doing. And even though I don't really feel enlighted about knowing a thing or two about ramen, as there is a pretty low chance I would even get to eat one any time soon, the fact that the show was able to inform me about something, and did that in a funny way through the nerdism of Koizumi-san, it gives you atleast something else besides the comedy. Oh, and the ramen made me really hungry at times, though I don't really know if I should count that as a positive or negative.
The art is what you really could expect from not the highest funded show out there. It doesn't look bad, but little is actually animated. The character desings atleast were appealing to my eyes this time around. The sound is something more interesting I would say. And i'm not talking about the OST or the voice-acting, which are both very average. The interesting thing is, believe or not, when the characters eat the ramen. That happens a LOT in almost every episode and so if you are a fan of sound effects with somebody eating, I guess you're gonna have a good time with Koizumi-san. I personally didn't really care all that much.
Do you remember when I said this anime contains most of the flaws of todays comedies? Although I didn't really express myself earlier, the answer it pretty clear. They're easily forgettable, they don't have high production values and most importantly, they just don't have any real ambitions. Which is the biggest problem of Ramen Daisuki Koizumi-san. It doesn't try to be different, it doesn't try to be more extreme. It feels like it's okay with being just average and forgotten after a little while. And no matter from which angle you look at it, that's just an approach calling for a failure. And anime forgotten in a month can be considered a failure.