Monday, 2 July 2012

YuruYuri ♪♪ - Episode 1

One of the summer season's big sequels is Yuru Yuri, now with added musical notation as it allows us to follow the daily life of the hugely popular Akaza Akari as she is admired and loved by all of her peers as they seek to lavish attention upon her at every turn.

Hang on a second, this doesn't actually sound like Yuru Yuri at all, does it?  After spending a third of the episode watching Akari enjoying her status as the centre of the universe like some kind of unspectacular Haruhi Suzumiya all of this is revealed, of course, to be a dream; a dream enjoyed on the train to a hot springs with her friends to kick off this series properly.

Once at the hot springs resort, it's time to engage in some good old-fashioned activities beloved of such a location such as playing table tennis (beware Chinatsu's ball-eating hair however) and having a good soak.  When there's nothing else to do, there's always the TV to fall back on, and with a Mirakurun movie showing both Kyoko actually find ourselves with something entertaining to watch for a little while.

If you think I'm kidding - I'm not.  Although this first episode of YuruYuri carries itself reasonably well on account of its energy and enthusiasm, it's only its brief magical girl "spoof" (if you can even call it that) that actually steps over the line into the realm of the downright funny, containing more great lines and moments than the rest of the instalment put together.  Beyond this, it would be harsh to call the remainder of the episode a barren comedy wasteland, but it wasn't a million miles from it - the punchlines for the rest of its gags were too clearly set out and predictable, although I suppose it managed to wait five minutes before foisting its first nosebleed joke upon us.

Having not hugely enjoyed the first season of YuruYuri, I can already hear the howls of anger and irritation that I've even deigned to visit this second season but hey, what can I say?  I'm a completist.  Plus a glutton for punishment.  Most frustrating of all, and aside from my broader desperation for good animated comedy, it's those occasional great moments that the series manages to produce that keeps me coming back in the hope that it might feed my desire for a giggle or two of a Monday night.  In fairness, this opener did deliver just that - a couple of laughs.  Which is better than nothing, or as we call it around here, Nichijou.

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