Let’s show some Go Home Spirit!
Slice 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 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.
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?
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.
Storyboard time, plus random seal
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.
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.