Chihiro Enomoto is a freshman that just got to a new school called Rikkyoin High School. He lost his parents in a traffic accident when he was 10. Since then, he has been living only with his elder sister Shinobu. He is good at cooking and cleaning, and does all the housekeeping jobs. He fell in love with Tokino at first sight when he met her in the school library on the first day of school. Another girl named Ritsuko, a childhood friend of Chihiro and the chair of student council, falls in the love with the boy instantly after this long-awaited reunion. But she is not the only one who is in love with him. This is the story about a one-year campaign among the candidates for the next students government leaders, who are also chosen by the lot (kujibiki), in order to gain the position.
These are 3 episodes of Kujibiki Unbalance which were the 1st, 21st and 25th episodes. This is the fictitious anime that the Genshiken guys were always watching, and after watching these 3 episodes, I think I liked it as much as the Genshiken guys did. These OVAs are definitely a MUST WATCH for people who liked Genshiken.
The 3 episodes I watched were just like previews of the show so I'm not so sure about the story. As from what I've understood in these 3 episodes, the story is about a boy named Chihiro that got into Rikkyouin High School, his encounters with people there, a
reunion with his childhood friend he promised to marry, and the Kujibiki, a school tournament, festival or tradition thing in which all the students face all kinds of battles for a whole year, be it sports, cooking, and silly competitions like enduring extreme temperature (synopsis says it's a battle for student government positions). It's a pretty fun and interesting story.
The art is really good. Everything looks great and the original character designs are nice. Problem is, only the designs were nice, most of the drawings seen are unattractively non-proportional and makes the characters look bad. Still, the animation is great, the characters move well and the action scenes are impressive.
The sounds are great. All the characters' voices are perfect. The soundtracks are nice and well fitted, and so are the effects. It has an attractive OP song and the ED song is good as is.
All the characters are great and likable. They have all kinds of fun personalities which makes the show comedy-funny and action-cool at the same time.
People would enjoy Kujibiki Unbalance as much as the Genshiken characters did. It's an anime of almost everything just like Seto no Hanayome. These 3 episodes are so good that viewers would want to check out the Kujibiki Unbalance 2006 alternate.
Watching Genshiken naturally incites an interest in the Anime-in-anime the guys from the club are all about; Kujibiki Unbalance, or as it is referred to most of the time; Kujiun.
And much more interesting that its story in itself naturally is what this show says about anime during the time of Genshiken's creation.
There always was generic Anime, no matter how you look at it, as well as people celebrating it who should know better.
And now that that's out of the way, what makes this OVA special?
It hits all the natural stages of 2000s generic highschool anime; A cast of wacky, but pretty one-note characters -
complete with big, candy-colored hair and matching, big eyes, gimmicky accessories, big hands and feet and more thick, slightly disproportionate bodies making them look younger than they are, as was typical for contemporaries like Negima, Uuchuu no Stellvia or Key-Adaptations, inviting for a lot of doujinshi.
The story beats are very structurally telling as well; The first episode introduces our colorful cast, very reminiscent of the classical structure of visuals novels of the time;
A character/ love interest whom he mysteriously shares a past with acting distant now, possibly terminally ill, a club he is more or less forced to join comprised of nothing but the cutest girls of his entire year. A central theme very woven into narrative and even dialogue of the characters, so much so that it becomes really annoying really fast.
You can pretty much write the rest of it in your head; We'll get character-centric episodes as well as romantic moments with our oblivious, innocent main character for each of these girls - even though we all know who he'll ultimately end up with - as well as small, dramatic moments and a lot of samey humor and obvious messages.
(Although I personally never got tired of blue forehead girls' antics and don't think I would've ever gotten there, even with 26 episodes of this, she's the best)
Introducing aliens into the mix as well as putting a lot of stakes into random competitions add to the wackyness and keep things as fresh as the stale character archetypes will allow it to be.
Episode 21 shows some of these ridiculous competitions, as well as hinting at what will result in the club briefly falling apart in episode 25, only to reunite by the end and getting right into the tearjerking finale, though not resolving everything and leaving some threads hanging since the Manga is still ongoing.
Lottery forever indeed.
And, honestly, the more I think about it, it's the kind of show everyone would've watched back at the time.
The OVA doesn't exactly have anything to comment on what it presents; it's just what was popular and common at the time, re-packaged into an amalgamation of as much of it as possible. It's a must-watch for every fan of Genshiken, as well as anyone who can appreciate this aesthetic and these storybeats, but it doesn't really stand on its own outside of those demographics.
But as someone both enjoying Genshiken and always interested in Anime trends of a time I personally wasn't around to experience, I thoroughly enjoyed this OVA and recommend it to anyone matching my description - although probably not more than once.
What anime do your favorite anime characters watch? What, you thought you were the only one that got to have all the fun? Fictional characters need their anime too! Here's 10 of the most memorable 'fictional' anime that featured in 'real' anime.