Randou Rino is a young girl with a head full of air and a talking puppet on her hand. She is accepted into the illustrious Gokujou all-girl's school, and is summarily, almost curiously, accepted as part of the even more illustrious Gokujou Student Council, who has more power and business ventures than most large businesses. Now a part of the student council, she befriends the talented members of the Gokujou Student Council, leaving one to wonder how a girl with seemingly no talents or redeeming qualities would get chosen for such a group.
Gokujou Seitokai is a lovely, rather under-appreciated series. Certainly if it were defined by its genre (a school comedy), it would not stand out from the million other school comedies, all with more cute, young characters filled to the brim with moeness (and who induce purely visceral "kyaaa!", squeals, or nosebleed reactions).
Gokujou Seitokai follows the formulaic school comedy idea fairly closely, and boasts a rather, if you will, cliché student council centric cast. But this is also where this series shines. I left something out when I said this series fell into the school comedy genre because technically speaking, this is a
satirical school comedy.
We need not go far to find evidence of this; just the title of this series alone has satirical elements to it. "Seitokai", as you might already know, means "student council". "Gokujou", then, is actually an abbreviation-- the full title of this series should actually be Miyagami Gakuen Gokudai Kengen Hoyuu Saijoukyuu Seitokai (Miyagami Academy Maximum Authority Holders Ultimate Level Student Council). I hardly need to point out it pokes fun at ridiculously long titles and names for things to make them sound impressive (think "ultimate attacks" in fighting anime series). Because of this satirical take, the series is not hindered but actually made better by its simple and rather predictable storyline.
Art-wise, it's fair enough to not really bother you either way. The animation is less than stellar, and sometimes you're left wondering where the heck the characters are looking at since they usually seem to have far-off gazes to their eyes. It shouldn't bug the average anime viewer very much, though. I didn't even notice it when I watched it the first time around. Colour-wise, this series goes with softer pastel colours, and it really goes well with the vibrant cheeriness that Gokujou Seitokai exudes.
The OP and ED are very good, in my opinion. Before I really get into the songs, I must say, it's particularly surprising that Gokujou Seitokai isn't more popular. It has an astounding seiyuu cast, with most (I'm talking 75% and above) being veterans and solidly A-list seiyuu. I won't elaborate too much on this since not everyone is into seiyuu (or even original Japanese audio), but if you are interested in seiyuu, I urge you to take a look at the cast. And although it has an impressive seiyuu cast, I can't give higher than 8/10 because there weren't any gut-wrenchingly mind-blowing scenes for the seiyuu to perform at their full capacity.
Now, the songs. Tamura Yukari sings the upbeat, cheery OP. It works, to say the least, since Tamura has one of the most moe voices I know. Oh, and this might be a concern for less serious anime goers. You may find the protagonist (voiced by Tamura) to be a little too high-pitched. I remember it getting on my nerves before I got my bearings and got used to the relatively high-pitched voices for girls in anime. The ED is very good too, and it's sung by several veteran seiyuu.
So... to put it shortly, I think this is a series I'd recommend to anyone who likes school comedies. It's suitable for all levels of viewers. Less serious anime viewers will like it for the hilarity, and people who've watched a gazillion school comedies will probably like it for the satirical elements. It also has vague (but very there) f/f vibes. It's played up for comedic value, but yuri fans will probably like it as well. (Anti-yuri people probably won't mind it, since as I said, it's played for comedy.) One thing to note, however, is that this does not have seinen-esque fanservice in the manner of cleavage shots or I-see-your-panties-and-get-massive-nosebleed gags despite the entirely female cast. Comedy and satire carry this series through.
I find it rather curious that this isn't more popular. The following three paragraphs will talk about my experience before watching this anime, so you can skip that if you want.
I discovered it reading a post by an anime veteran (1200+ watched) in a gaming forum. There was some discussion going on about the current state of anime and he used Gokujou Seitokai as an example of an school comedy without any trace of fan service. I thought I should give it a try and tried to download it.
I said I tried to download it because I didn't know this was so rare when I
tried to find it. I tried to get it via Torrent but none of them had seeders. I got a few torrents from the most popular anime sharing sites, and after over two months, someone appeared in the seeder list and I started to download it.
At this point I forgot about the non-fanservice thing and just wanted to watch it because it was so rare. Even you search about it in Google, you won't find much. The IRC channel of the only fansub you can find that subbed Gokujou Seitokai, 3WA Subs, is empty. I was really curious to watch this. I didn't expect it to be good, I just wanted to satisfy my curiosity.
I started this review saying that I didn't know why this wasn't popular. After watching just a few episodes, I was surprised that this unknown show I've heard about in a discussion forum was so good. The best word to describe Gokujou Seitokai is "enjoyable". The episodes are really enjoyable to watch. They have an air of innocence and comedy that doesn't exactly feel unique, but the combination of everything creates a really good experience.
The main character is Randou Rino, a young student that has nowhere to go after her mother died of an illness. At this point, her only 'friend' is a puppet she calls Pucchan. Following a letter written by someone who identifies himself as "Mr.Poppit", she heads to the Miyagami School, and meets the Gokujou Seitokai.
The Gokujou Seitokai is a student council that has more power than the school staff. They are considered fantastic by the school students and everyone loves them. They have all sort of unique members that resolves all kind of problems that may happen in Miyagami School. Being invited by the Student Council president and founder Miyagami School, Jinguji Kanade, Randou Rino joins the Student Council. The episodes usually follow her and the other Gokujou Seitokai members as they resolve all kind of situations.
That anime veteran was right when he said it had no fanservice. We are so used to it that it feels strange. There is no fanservice at all. This is a school comedy without a single panty shot in the whole 26 episodes. The characters aren't unbelievable cute, they look normal instead. I know fanservice is not just sexualizing characters, but I don't believe you can find fanservice in any other form as well in Gokujou Seitokai. I don't take this as an necessarily good point - fanservice can be either good or bad depending on the situation and if its needed or not - but finding an anime of this genre with none at all was very interesting. Even if you don't like the genre, I'd recommend watching it just for the reference.
What makes Gokujou Seitokai so good is the experience from the viewer's point of view. While there isn't that much positive to talk in the sound department and even less in the visual (actually, there are some really ugly scenes), the episodes are so well made it makes up for everything. The stories are fun and innocent, simple jokes and funny, unrealistic situations will make sure you'll have fun watching this.
You should watch Gokujou Seitokai. Its an unknown, underrated, wonderful experience created by simple yet wonderful characters and a charming atmosphere.
First Words :
- Initially I dropped this series some years ago ( don't remember why ) and decided to pick it back up.
- I find that this Anime is underrated and probably overlooked quite a bit.
- It may seem generic, initially the puppet was what caught my attention. But the more I watched the more I found this series to be unique.
- There doesn't seem to be a plot at the beginning but as the series goes on hints are thrown and it's slowly revealed.
- While it seems completely like a comedy there is a nice amount of drama in it
What It's About :
it's a slice of life which revolves around the problems and situations that the student government council has to deal with. But unlike typical student governments they have more power than the staff themselves ( they also have quite of bit of money ), they even have their own Covert and Assault divisions. The fact that they are rich allows for quite a bit of creative and amusing situations.
- While most of it is slice of life, there is a main plot hiding beneath everything. Rino is brought to the school by a mysterious penpal and as the series goes on the motivations and mystery is revealed.
What I liked :
+ A variety of interesting characters while each character gets an interesting background, personality, and story. The series doesn't just throw characters and expect you to like them, they actually make you care about them.
+ Plenty of laughs to go around given the large cast of colorful characters and situations.
+ Each episode is accompanied with a different story ( while slowing revealing the plot ) which keeps it from being repetitive.
+ While it seems to be mainly a comedy it does take itself seriously at times. I found it emotional.
+ The fact it centers around a powerful student council keeps it fresh and interesting. It allows interesting situations not typical in a slice of life series.
+ Instead of slice of life from a student, it's from the perspective of the students that "control" the school.
+ There's actually some nice action going on
+ Cheery feel good Anime like others have mentioned
+ It ended up nicely, though there are still questions that haven't been answered.
What I didn't like :
- The ending somewhat brought up more questions for me. I'd explain but this is a spoiler free review.
- Some questions left unanswered ( like the puppet ).
- The twists aren't that big of a twist.
I don't have much to complain since I found it to be a heart warming series. It has a more interesting take on the slice of life genre since the student council itself isn't your typical run of the mill student government. Overall I felt this series was definitely worth picking back up and finishing. I recommend this Anime for those who're into a slice of life with a student government twist and a comedy with some light drama.
This is my first review for an anime. However, my overwhelming enjoyment for this series compelled me to write a review. I feel like it is one of the most underrated animes. The inclusion of a puppet, Punchan, was a bit strange, but as I watched on I understood why he had to be one of the central characters to the story. The puppet is in fact alive and speaks and acts on his own accord when handled with a pair of hands.
This is one of the few animes I've seen that constantly kept me laughing. Gokujou Seitokai is a surprisingly charming feel-good anime. The
very beginning had a striking similarity to Stawberry Panic, but there is no yuri at all.
The Gokujou Student Council members protect the school and in doing so forge a tight-bound friendship with one another. They each have their own special abilities and in coming to Hiyami High School find their strengths. It's definitely one of my favorites.