First Impressions – Kitakubu Katsudou Kiroku

summer13-out-kitakubu

Let’s show some Go Home Spirit!

spring13-highwSlice of Life shows are pretty huge this season, and one of the first out of the gate is Kitakubu Katsudou Kirouku, or Chronicles of the Going Home Club. How well does this 4-koma adaptation work in its first outing? Let’s find out!

 Quick Skits and Quick Hits 

The Kitakubu

The Kitakubu in, er, action?

As I said, Kitakubu is an adaptation from a 4-koma, but unlike the last 4-koma adaptation I watched, Kotoura-san, this one really doesn’t try for continuity or narrative. Instead, it goes with a series of short skits, similar to Azumangah Daioh. The main character is Andou Natsuki, who’s uninterested in joining a club, so she says she’s going to join the “Going Home Club” (kitaku bu), the somewhat derogatory name that those who don’t join high school clubs get, since they just go home after school, but it turns out that there’s an official club named the Going Home Club, and now Natsuki’s being pressed to join by her classmate Karin.

Get used to this

Gotta get used to this kind of view, Natsuki is always intruding on the scene.

With that basic setup, the show presents the setups quick and gets through each scenario in a relative hurry. We do get some introductions to the characters through this first episode, and these characters are right out of animanga central casting: Botan is the martial arts expert, Claire is the Oujo-sama daughter of the head of a multinational corporation, and Sakura is the twin-tailed blonde positive club president. Of the first years, Karin, is the somewhat meek dtizy girl who wants to get along with people, and Natsuki is the disbelieving retorting tsukkomi. The only character that gives a retort to Natsuki is the seals that pop up throughout the show (don’t ask me why).

How does the show play out?

Forestalling the early ending

Natsuki won’t let them end the show early 

It’s definitely a short skit kind of show. On top of that, the ‘activities’ of the club aren’t really the main driver of the comedy, more just reactions to what they’re talking about otherwise, like feeding pigeons in the park, getting ice cream from a convenience store, or buying crepes. The comedy comes from the interactions of the characters but I tended to find Natsuki’s retorts a little over-amped up for my tastes, escalated to yelling way too fast, which made the show seem like it was shouting at me a bit too much. Otherwise, it also likes to play with the 4th wall a lot, with a repeated gag of running the ending credits early, only to have Natsuki push them back, or commenting on Claire getting a lot of animation frames (10 seconds worth) just to raise her hand, resulting in the budget being blown and everyone else being reduced to story boards.

Storyboards+Seal

Storyboard time, plus random seal

Production

The ahoge becomes a standin

It doesn’t take long for the ahoge to become a total stand in for Natsuki

The production by Nomad is pretty typical for this type of show, nothing to write home about, but nothing to complain about. The seiyuu cast is almost all complete newcomers, with the exception of Natsuki, who is played by Ibuki Kido, the now-15-year-old who impressed everyone with her portrayal of Akiko in OniAi last fall. OP and ED themes are plenty serviceable for this style show, but probably aren’t going to make anyone’s playlist of awesome anisongs. Sound and visual effects are very comic-esque, and fit in well with the show.

header-spr13-highway

I think Kitakubu Katsudou Kiroku is going to be a fun show to watch this season, even if I’m hoping (against hope) that Natsuki’s volume level comes down a bit. The characters aren’t anything amazingly original, but they work in this type of show, and the overall formula should be good for laughs. I said in the Summer Preview that I hoped it would be a little like GJ-bu, but I don’t see anything like that coming out of this show, it’s just completely different.

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Proving that you don't have to be young to love anime, I enjoy all genres and styles of shows. If it's not hurting anyone else, you should never be ashamed of what you like!
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19 Responses to “First Impressions – Kitakubu Katsudou Kiroku”

  1. skylion says:

    Along with Kiniro Mosaic, and Love Lab, I was looking forward to this show. With it being the first out of the gate, I wanted it to have punch.

    Too many punches. Loud punches. Random punches. With an ahoge that might as well have it’s own zip code.

    I think it suffers from some pacing issues as the lamer jokes came along at the beginning, making some of the 4th wall breaking seemed tacked on.

    This one is a pencil sketch compared to the masterpiece portrait that is Love Lab, and a hasty stick figure to the meis en scene deadpan delivery of Kinrio.

    But it does have hope, the jokes in the third act has some sharpness to it.

    • Highway says:

      I think pacing issues are going to be a constant problem with the kind of show this is, which makes no secret of the fact that it’s, essentially, adapted from comic strips. Some skits are going to be longer, some are going to be quick hitters. Like it or not, Azumanga Daioh and Acchi Kocchi had the same issues. But while Acchi Kocchi made up for it with pure cuteness, and Azumanga Daioh tried to make up for it with too much Osaka and Chi-chan, I don’t know what this show’s going to do, because I don’t see the characteristics of any of these characters able to carry the show across the bumpy parts.

      But I really did find Natsuki’s volume to get too loud too fast.

      • skylion says:

        AD wasn’t that quick out of the gate, either. But it did grow, so much is became parts of cultural shorthand….

        • Highway says:

          I watched AD by marathon, so it may have presented slower as a weekly (I know a lot of the complaints during airing of Mouretsu Pirates were “it’s too slow” while marathoning it was about the perfect pace). But in comparison, it just seems like Kitakubu is trying to make up for inconsistency with sheer volume.

          • AllenAndArth says:

            HW is so mean for making fun of the show being loud…i did it too! :P

  2. Liza says:

    Dang Natsuki’s ahoge is huge. 0_0 It’s so distracting!

    Some of the gags I felt were a little underdeveloped and it did seem to drag a bit but there were funny parts, like when Botan was telling everyone about how she fought all of those bears.

  3. HannoX says:

    This first episode was amusing enough that I’ll stick with it for now, but it’s far from the funniest show this season. We’ll see if it gets better, but I doubt it’ll ever be the top comedy this season.

    I didn’t find Natsuki’s yelling nearly as annoying as her ahoge. I kept wanting someone in the show to grab some scissors and cut it off. As for her yelling, she’s clearly what passes for the straight man in this show and the decision was made for her to overreact to everyone else’s antics. The yelling and her ahoge are her comedy points.

  4. BlackBriar says:

    This first episode was meh. The jokes were forced and they tried to make a joke and an astonishment out of every little semi important thing which later felt cliché and ruined the mood.

    Natsuki’s needlessly loud and her yelling annoyed me at certain point. It’s funny at first but there’s a limit to everything and she has long crossed it. While Nyaruko wins the award for longest ahoge, Natsuki wins the one for the biggest. I’m going to save myself some time and end it right here unless there’s some positive word of mouth later on.

    • Jrow says:

      I feel the same as you BB, even about the ridiculous ahoge Natsuki had.

      • BlackBriar says:

        I had to ask how it can even get that big. Genetics or some weird hair care product? Someone shuld cut it off.

        • Jrow says:

          It’s kind of like they saw how a series like Monogatari or some other manga use it to comedic effect and just exaggerated the size of it to where it ends up being more distracting than supplemental to the comedy.

          • BlackBriar says:

            The comedy would have been good if everything wasn’t so obviously forced. It felt as if nothing was thought through.

  5. AllenAndArth says:

    i…think that this show is very strange…and not in a good way, it’s too random, loud and…too many puches for nothing, by the way what’s with the omnipotent intruder?(Natsuki)…some jokes passed the limit…of volume
    ok…that was a loud joke…fine, ill stop with the lame jokes on the too-loud episode, though AD wasn’t that good in the beginning too, let’s see if it get’s better…

  6. Foshizzel says:

    The damn bear fight story was so hilarious! I could not stop laughing!

    • BlackBriar says:

      That girl fought more bears than Mayo Chiki’s Kureha!!

  7. JPNIgor says:

    I had to drop it .-. Really, I didn’t like it. And I didn’t even notice that it was made in short skits. The characters weren’t likeable, specially the main one. She seems to want to be the normal one among everyone even though she has a giant Koyomi/Hachiman-like lock of hair. Isn’t the story of a girl fighting bears from China to North Pole awesome? Treat it as awesome, damn it ¬¬ I wish Natsuki would let her show end earlier as they intended to.

    • skylion says:

      I want to like it, and it does have things to enjoy. But there is so much imbalance in it. I’m giving it the three to try, and then I’ll see…

      • AllenAndArth says:

        best of three!if it still sucks on the third episode i give up…but it’s passable for now

  8. Moni Chan says:

    This has been my favorite so far. I can’t wait to see more

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