Episode two of Seitokai no Ichizon sees Sakurano suggesting that everyone on the student council undergoes a study session on account of some upcoming exams. But with all but one of the council members already amongst the top-ranking students, is there any point? In fact, hang on a second, who is that solitary council member who isn't a top-ranking student? None other than Kurimu Sakurano, of course.
Naturally, this whole question of studying (or not studying) is really little more than a ruse to throw Seitokai no Ichizon straight back into its world of parodies, sly references and the like, and thus we get everything from Death Note through to NyanType. Of course, the trouble with such references is that a. They rely on someone "getting" the reference in the first place and b. Simply name-dropping can be a hit and miss affair at best. Thus, some of the references on show in this episode felt rather forced while others fitted in quite respectably, and to be honest I'm sure some passed me by entirely. What this series seriously lacks is material that ventures outside of otaku culture to bring a bit more balance to it - Instead, it tries to shoe-horn in too many "in" jokes while forgetting that sometimes a bit of slapstick comedy or a play on words can be equally, if not more effective. Just look at a show like Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei or Lucky Star - Two series that are packed chock-full of nods to and jokes about pop culture, yet they still know when to drop jokes that pretty much anyone will understand and enjoy.
That, coupled with a lack of any real plot or progression, can make Seitokai no Ichizon a frustrating viewing experience - There just aren't enough funny moments to make it feel particularly worthwhile. Of course, I'll continue watcing if only for the sake of this 'blog and the fact that I do get a kick out of some of the references, but it's hardly the poster girl of its genre judging by the first two episodes, a few little gems (mostly contained in the first couple of minutes of the first episode) aside.