Sunday, 28 August 2011

Nichijou - Episode 22

This week's instalment of Nichijou could probably be subtitled "Tsuyoshi's bad day", given that he fatures quite heavily throughout while generally having a rather rough time of things.

This instalment begins with our Mohawk-sporting friend trying to prove that ghosts don't exist in discussion with a priest by trying to open up a conversation that he can debunk with science - when this doesn't go well at all, things take a turn for the bizarre, ending up with a couple of great bits of slapstick comedy that bely the insipid stupid of their setup.  That aside, Tsuyoshi is also getting a rough time from his dad as he's forced into following in said father's footsteps and dressing as a Daifuku - indeed, so eager is his dad to ensure that he complies that said outfit is even booby-trapped...

Away from he of the instantly recognisable haircut, this week's episode serves up a real mixed bag, with other highlights including the Professor deciding to take Sakamoto for a walk only for them to find themselves surrounded by dogs - terrifying prospect assuaged only by the appearance of Mio and Yuuko who assure her that these dogs won't bite - at least, that's their assumption.... Probably my favourite sketch of this particular episode however involves Fe and Weboshi, with the former trying her best to show off a positive outlook on life in light of her friend dropping her meat bun, only for any such positivity to collapse against the over-whelming odds of misfortune.  I think it's pretty safe to say we've all had days like this.

The longer this series goes on, the more convinced I am that Nichijou is funniest when it's playing with simple slapstick gags - Kyoto Animation seem to get such jokes spot on visually and most of the funniest portions of recent instalments have revolved around just such moments right the way through to this week's episode, where only Yuuko and Mio's slickly animated over-reactions to being beaten even come close to besting such gags.  It still isn't enough to really life this series even close to the upper echelons of comedy, but I've learned by now that you have to take what you can get from this series.

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