Another episode of Hyakko introduces us to yet another "new" (new, as in we've seen her before but didn't really know anything about her) character, but yet again it appears to have left its sense of humour at the dry cleaners or something.
This time around, the emphasis of the episode is upon Touma Kazamatsuri - A quiet girl who wants to keep herself to herself, not wanting anyone to intrude on her languid life of visiting the library and sitting up on the school roof to read and eat her lunch. That sounds pretty good to me actually, but of course not to Torako, who promised to be Touma's friend before they both joined the school and still seems determined to have that friendship blossom.
Cue an episode of Torako straight up irritating Touma, a scenario which could have been amusing but somehow managed to be entirely unfunny apart from a brief aside involving Torako breaking her teacher's phone, which gave me a brief chuckle. I'm really not sure what's wrong with the writers of this series, they have a decent if typical setup to the series, they have a pretty strong cast of characters and character types to play with, and yet they seem almost wholly incapable of making them do anything even vaguely interesting, let alone funny. It's like they're trying to copy Hidamari Sketch in concentrating on mundane everyday life as much as possible, only they forgot to watch episodes of that aforementioned series through to the point where there are actual jokes. It's either that or I'm suffering from a complete sense of humour failure every time I watch this series.
Throughout its run so far I've really wanted to like Hyakko, as I genuinely believe that it could and should work as an anime for the reasons I've already laid out. Yet, despite some promising moments for a little while, it seems to have been anaesthetised, and recent episodes have felt like I've just been watching to say my goodbyes as its last signs of life slip away into the ether. With just three episodes left to go, I'm not particularly hopeful for a sudden upturn in its fortunes either.