Sunday, 19 June 2011

Nichijou - Episode 12

What's this?  Stop the presses!  Yuuko has actually remember to do her homework!  Except, of course, she's forgotten to actually bring it with her.  Cue more over-reactions to kick off Nichijou's twelfth episode post-credits, although at least it also brought one laugh-worthy moment with it.

From this point forth, we're treated to the usual blitz of quick skits and sketches - it takes a while before we reach anything broadly amusing however, and perhaps the most bizarre and blatantly rigged shooting game you'll ever find at a fair, complete with eggplants and caramel as its only prizes.  This well-paced and controlled sketch is followed by the nightmare not of losing your own wallet, but dropping somebody else's - a nightmare experienced by Mio, and duly hammered into the ground by (who else?) Yuuko's reaction face.

After a brief but uncomfortably reminiscent sketch showing what happens when ditzy customer meets ditzy assistant, the best visual gag of the episode comes via the Professor deciding to spend a day as Nano - an idea that quickly goes out of the window in the first instance when the difficulties of everyday life with a screw attached to your back quickly materialise.  A few sketches barely worth of mention later, we're done with another episode.

Now that we're almost touching the half-way point of Nichijou, it has to be said that the series finally, finally feels more comfortable in its own skin - that doesn't make it wall-to-wall funny by any degree (it remains very much a case of picking out diamonds from the rough), but it does feel better paced as a while so even jokes that fly over your head or leave you stony-faced like Yuuko with a missing wallet tend to fly by relatively quickly to try and amuse you with something else.  That better pacing also tends to make the funnier moments more genuinely funny, as they aren't over-used... with the exception of all those reaction shots and exclamations of course, which remains the bête noire of this show's comedy for me at this juncture.

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