A few ammendments to what I said previously – unfortuntely Skins won’t be able to help out with First Impressions this time, but Junko still will. There might be a few shows that end up not-reviewed but eh, that always happens here. I’m sure you’ll all live.

Let us begin.

‘Denkigai no Honya-san’: ‘A book store in Electric Town’. It’s not explicitly named in the episode but it’s incredibly obvious, Denkigai is Akihabara, and the ‘book store’ the cast works at, ‘Uma no Hone'(‘Horse’s Bones’) is quite obviously a bizarro version of the famous Tora no Ana (‘Tigers Den’).  The cast in question is three young men and four girls who look far, far too young to be working in an environment that specializes in the sale of porn comics.
The episode mostly shows their daily lives working in such a store, although it’s cut into two distinct ‘story’ segments. The first is about the aforementioned porn comics and a Tokyo Youth Development worker who comes in to check that they are meeting regulations. One of the staff,  nicknamed Sommelier, possesses the incredible talent to be able to flawlessly recommend fetish manga to anyone who asks, simply by looking at them. The second story focusses on the girl nicknamed ‘Sensei’, who is a doujin-author herself, and her efforts to finish her manuscript in time for the convention deadline.

I actually laughed at loud at this.

Denkigai seems to be the latest show that heavily lampoons its own genre, and, like others before it, it’s very hit and miss. It’s definitely got a lot of energy behind it that is occasionally infectious, but it suffers from a lot of the flaws that plague the kind of cast dynamic it has. Parts of it reminded me a lot of Working! (the glasses boy even looks almost the same) but I feel like that show had more likeable characters in its first episode – so far, Denkigai’s are a lot more generic and flat. I also feel like I’ve seen most of them before several times in other anime.

Being obviously aimed at otaku it makes sense that the female cast would be a bunch of moeblobs who look no older than 10, but it becomes incredibly confusing as to how old they are actually meant to be. I would imagine one would need to be at least 18 to work in a shop like this but it would be easier to accept the girl’s appearance as the show’s art style if the men all looked like little boys as well. Something about the juxtaposition it is slightly unnerving to me. Also, I find it hard to believe that the blond girl had no idea what BL was despite working in an otaku store. What, was she new? Who knows, because this episode doesn’t really tell us much about any of the characters besides a few quirks, although I imagine we’ll find out more about hat-girl and shy-uguu girl in the next episode.

I think that a lot of the humour in the episode was quite forced, but I did find the ‘manga recommendation’ segment in which customers are awakened to fetishes they never knew they had genuinely funny. It made me think that despite my overall lukewarm feelings on the rest of the episode, future episodes may well be worth checking out. Unfortunately the next episode preview had the lolitacular cast dressed up in tight bloomers and having some kind of wet t-shirt contest so any interest I had pretty much got snuffed out, but hey.

The ‘behind the scenes’ look at anime stores is vaguely interesting in parts and it has demonstrated that it’s capable of being funny, but the only way to know if it’s truly going to be any good would be to watch more of it. If you like anime that lampoon otaku culture while not minding the fact that it’s the exact same thing its lampooning, it’s at least worth a look. But if I was going to watch a show about cute too-young looking girls working in an Akihabara store, I’d rather just rewatch Di Gi Charat.


Out of 5,