Yo I finally got my internet back so I can start watching the first impressions I was assigned! Boy I’m so happy, I was getting sad not being able to watch any of the new shows and couldn’t wait to begin. Besides, Ariana and Junko have reviewed so many crappers I’m sure they’ve got the worst out of the way already, so my chances of starting with something not-awful are pretty high. So what’s my first show then? I hope its something really OH GODDAMN IT

spoiler: this was bad

spoiler: it was bad

Generic HighSchool Boy (lets call him GHB for short) is a shy guy who can fix gadgets, and he’s so good at it that people are always getting him to fix things. He never refuses, because he’s such a nice guy. He fixes an mp3 player for the class president whose comically oversized boobs bounce in gratitude (no, really) and he also fixes a car for…some other guy. Somehow or other, he ends up at a lab, presumably to fix something, but nobody is there except a sleeping and sickly Generic Moe Blob (GMB). She wakes up and grabs his hand, a bunch of trippy nonsense happens and a disembodied voice tells him he has received the ‘revelation of babel’,  and then a painfully unfunny scientist barges in and congratulates him. Apparently he is now GMB’s partner, and this is a very exciting thing, but not exciting enough that he will tell GHB wtf is going on. Except for the fact that if he ever let’s go of GMB’s hand, she will die, because they are now HANDSHAKERS!

Then a bunch of chains start attacking them both and they have to get out as they are attacked by some douchebag and his partner (slave?), an uncomfortably submissive girl who screams orgasmically whenever the chains she controls do anything, which is every three seconds. This ridiculous battle is actually where the episode starts, and the rest is a flashback, because apparently this nonsense is exciting enough that we were all dying to know how they got into this mess. Eventually they defeat the incredibly uncomfortable duo with a sword made entirely of gears. also the magical weapons are called ‘nimrods’.

wooOOOOOOOAH TRIPPY that's how we make things deep right

wooOOOOOOOAH TRIPPY that’s how we make things deep right

Were this any other anime, Hand Shakers would be some forgettable generic garbage that people only remember for the stupid name, and that would be the end of it. However, it manages to be a whole lot worse than that because this is, without a doubt, one of the absolute most hideous shows I have ever reviewed on this blog.

And yet it tries, so so hard, to look cool. It’s like it’s straining at the seams at how hard it’s trying to impress you with its animation and yet failing so badly it’s actually funny. First of all, it’s another of those 2.5D CGI anime that there are usually at least one of every season. Those usually look pretty unappealing, but this one was something else. The characters and their movements are not only cringe-inducingly bad, but every goddamn square centimeter of every goddamn shot is packed with as much superfluous, unnecessary shiny bullshit that it’s a complete retinal assault.

The characters simply cannot be still. You cannot show off your cool animation with static characters, so they’ve gotta be slightly moving at all times. If they’re not, their hair is, and if they’re female, their boobs bounce hilariously everywhere for no reason, even if they’re standing still. And this isn’t just the main characters. Have you ever seen a crowd scene in an anime and though ‘hey, those people are just standing still or aren’t animated enough.’ Well, in Hand Shakers, every single character that exists in the background at all times will be moving as much as possible. At first I thought this wasn’t too bad, because it’s a novel change from static background characters but holy shit, there’s a reason people don’t animate background characters much. All this superfluous movement in a shot doesn’t enhance it or make it look more lifelike, it just looks like an absolute chaotic mess of awkward moving parts. And if the characters aren’t moving enough, the camera sure is, it dips and flies and spins all over the goddamn place like the director thinks this is the most impressive thing ever. Maybe, maybe, you can do this in a battle scene for some kind of effect but this happens in generic classroom talking scenes. Even worse, all this crap going on seems to have slowed down the rendering of a 3D engine clearly not equipped to deal with so many components at once so the movement is really juttery and not very smooth at all.

And that’s still not all of it. Every single vaguely reflective object, whether it be a car or some jewellery or the metal on some medical equipment or a steel railing, will sparkly ridiculous and get multiple lense flares, like someone just built some 3D engine specifically for rendering metal and just WENT TO TOWN like they really wanted you to notice. But wait, there’s more! Dust particles floating around in the air! That’s not cool enough for you? How about REALLY FAST MOVING CLOUDS WHENEVER YOU CAN SEE THE SKY? Even if it’s just through a classroom window? Also, give those clouds shadows, just because. This is how you do Good Animation, right?

So yeah, if my synopsis sounded vague, it’s because there is a conversation that takes place where all of this bullshit is happening in a classroom at once, and as you may have guessed it is kind of hard to take in literally any information from that conversation when every goddamn thing on-screen is doing its best to distract you. Just…holy shit. I have never seen a show that needed so badly to calm down. It’s like every single component needs a Ritalin.

But the terrible animation isn’t even everything that sucks about this show. The enemy characters of this episode, who I assume are also ‘Hand Shakers’, are a guy who carries his partner around on a leash, and she seems to have the power to make killer chains manifest. However, they also keep snaking around her body for some reason which makes her moan and squeal orgasmically. I had to lower the volume on my computer three times because of this and I’m pretty sure my neighbours thought I was watching porn if they were home. It just keeps happening?! The douchebag guy also throws her violently to the ground a lot and in one thoroughly perplexing scene, starts treading on her crotch (she reacts as you’d expect). Normally I’d be pretty disgusted at the blatant misogyny on display (and also the creepy way literally every other female character in this is treated, as they’re either a bouncing boobmonster or a generic infantile moeblob that literally communicates entirely in cutesy noises) but it was all just so over the top and comically terrible that it made me laugh instead. That and the fact that with her black and white striped socks and tartan skirt, she looks like the kind of generic anime ‘goth girl’ people used to have in forum signatures in 2003.

In short, Hand Shakers was not only bad, it was bad in a way that was actually breath-taking and kind of amazing. It didn’t make me angry at least because I was so in awe of how many ways it could find to be The Worst, but it was still genuinely awful. The rest of 2017’s anime is gonna have to suck pretty bad for it to not win the worst show of the year award, just saying.

this screenshot here of this guy with the girl on a leash is, believe it or not, one of the least fetishy of the potential screenshots of this pair I could have included.

this screenshot here of this guy with the girl on a leash is, believe it or not, one of the least fetishy of the potential screenshots of this pair I could have included.

Out of 5,
melonsolely just for being hideous in a way I haven’t seen yet, which was kinda novel I suppose.


BONUS: check out some of the gifs Jake from ANN posted on twitter to see some of this idiocy for yourself if you’re so inclined.