Medaka Box – 02

Sad Medaka doggy is sad…

Well, our round of First Impression posts for Spring 2012 are starting to come to a close, and we’re starting to get our first batch of 2nd episodes. Medaka Box didn’t exactly start well, but I’m all about second chances, so let’s see how this one turns out.

Clearly enough information to deduce the culprit’s handedness, relative location of home, shoe preference…

An episode of 2 halves, each with Medaka and Zenkichi tackling a new request from the Medaka Box. 1st half has a direct one from a girl in the track team. Her being selected for an upcoming race despite being just a 2nd year got her bullied: her track cleats were cut up in her locker and accompanied with a newspaper clipped message, and she needs Medaka to find the culprit. Medaka immediately makes some deductions about the culprit based on the situation, the state of the cleats, even the back of the cut out letters of the newspaper, and Zenkichi gets help from Shiranui identifying one person on the track team who fits the profile.

Without any strategy, Medaka asks her point blank if she is the culprit, leading to a brief chase scene. Naturally she denies, and Medaka openly believes her. But this moves the girl so much (Zenkichi being there invoking her conscience probably had something to do with it too), that she replaces the bullied girl’s sneakers she was using as substitute with a new pair of the same track cleats. This is solution enough for Zenkichi and the girl. Unfortunately, Medaka is bothered that she couldn’t solve the case and now the girl also has her sneakers stolen…

With Zenkichi’s face like that, we didn’t really even need to see the dog.

2nd half features Zenkichi trying to solve a request on behalf of Medaka due to its involvement of an animal, a missing dog that looks pretty harmless based on the owner’s drawing. Unfortunately, when Shiranui again somehow manages to locate it, it turns out to have grown quite a bit since the owner saw it last, and Zenkichi ends up being chased and bitten. Medaka decides to go for it in his stead, mainly because she’s blatanatly jealous that Zenkichi is hanging out with another girl, but to do that, she needs to get into the proper attire…

Don’t question Medaka’s dedication to her student body.

And Medaka’s big weakness is that animals fear her. Zenkichi explains with accompanying flashbacks that animals would always hide in fear whenever she approached. This is the case here as well, and the dog ironically hides behind Zenkichi for help, and thus the request is fulfilled. Even if it leaves Medaka depressed that yet another animal ran away from her. Or was it that she couldn’t be a convincing dog?

That bowl with her name printed on it really sells it.

Godlike? Doglike?

Yes, this better be here to stay!

Difference between fantasy and reality can sometimes be so crucial.

This time, Medaka gets the tables turned on her.

I can tell you, my reaction certainly wouldn’t be to run away

I liked the ED gimmick. Very relaxing song, too.

That was a marginally better episode than the first, if only for Medaka’s insane deductive skills in the 1st half and her indulgent dog suit in the 2nd. I admit, those got me to laugh. Still, the production values did not impress, taking all the standard shortcuts. The 1st half had a great opportunity to show off Medaka’s godlike remarkable physical abilities and just have a good well-animated chase scene. But no, just lots of repeated frames and some action stills.

Come on, a still like this would’ve been great to see fully animated.

I’m guessing we’re going to see more of this type of episode in the near future, setting up a cycle of Zenkichi and Medaka solving problems for the student body as they arrive in the Medaka Box, with Shiranui in support. Speaking of whom, she was crucial to the discovery phase of and quite a lot of fun in both parts of the episode. I had mentioned that there was something unnerving about her, and it seems there was truth to that feeling. Is she a would-be information broker a la Izaya or Souma? Or maybe her special ability is “to find things,” like Mikiya? I wonder if she’ll become a full fledged student council member eventually.

The student council still needs to start filling out in general. I hope it happens soon, because the cast feels pretty bare right now, with Shiranui carrying the bulk of the load. Okay, Medaka’s dog girl gag in this one was pretty funny, but I want to see more of Medaka lecturing. Her jealousy bit was cute, but I’m pretty sure this show’s not gonna be developing much on the romance element anytime soon. I don’t mind the idea of this show being mainly a physical comedy that settles into a standard episodic rhythm, but it needs strong characters for that to work. Ones that aren’t so insecure about wearing their PE clothes under their uniforms (though I did enjoy that running bit).


Sparkles for everyone!


A math/science geek and a self-dubbed cynical optimist. I don't care if it's deep, if it can make me feel something or laugh, it's fine in my book. @lvlln
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8 Responses to “Medaka Box – 02”

  1. Hawthorne says:

    Shiranui being compared to Izaya sounds pretty accurate! xD At first I thought she was going to be purely a comic relief character that appears now and then … sort of like a mascot, but I’m glad she a bigger part in Zenkichi’s daily troubles

    • Hawthorne says:

      Oh, and I’m looking forward to some more student council members as well. Medaka still seems a bit boringly perfect, which I’m sure will eventually change, but I do like watching a diverse cast of characters rather then just two or three in this type of setting!

    • lvlln says:

      Emiri Kato seems to have a talent for playing such characters. Playful and funny at times, but also seeming to be hiding something. Really, she’s a delight to hear and has made her character actually overshadow the title character.

  2. tatsuya says:

    wait ..~~I’m suppose to be happy to see this ,what the hec …,LOVE this anime !!!..\(^∀^)メ(^∀^)ノ

  3. Bob from Accounting says:

    This seems like the kind of Jump series that’ll take too long to get to the point and will therefore be a pain to watch as an anime. I’ll probs just read the manga.

    • Andmeuths says:

      Just read the manga. I really have a serious suspicion that this adaptation is going to crash and burn in the same manner the Negima adaptation died.

      The problem is, if they were really serious about selling Medaka Box, I’d imagine that they would have been better of hitting the genre shift by Episode 5, latest. They are not going to make it at this rate.

  4. Alynn says:

    Oh Shiranui. My sister spoiled me about her deal, so I can’t see her the same. D;

    I definitely enjoyed the second episode better than the first, though I do agree that those chase scenes should have been animated D;

  5. HannoX says:

    A bigger budget to animate the chase sequence was definitely needed. Medaka did look cute in that dog suit.

    I thought the best part of this episode was the bit about her aura being so overwhelming that animals are terrified of her, even tigers, lions and bears at the zoo hiding when her first grade class came. I wonder if that’s going to be a running gag.

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