Published on January 8th, 2013 | by clazy
Joshiraku – Review
Joshiraku is about 5 girls who work at a rakugo parlor. Although there is some clips of their performances, most of the episodes are spent just talking in their break room or going around popular tourist attractions in Japan, often with cynical criticism. Each episode has 2-3 short stories or scenes and really is just about their everyday dialogue showcasing their “cute” attributes. The five main girls are:
Burateii Mari – Tomboyish and flat-chested, often called a boy by her peers
Harokitei Kigurumi (Kigu) – Her childlike appearance is a facade for her dark inside
Bouhatei Tetora – Upbeat and blessed by God, she is lucky in all aspects of life
Kuurubiyuutei Gankyou – Down-to-earth, メガネ character
Anrakutei Kukuru – Emo and into the occult
Thoughts and Reflections:
At first I was expecting really great things out of this anime. It seemed to work well in manga form, since it was written by Kumeta Kouji, author of the infamous Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei. However, expecting too much was my one regrettable mistake when watching this show week-by-week. I feel like if I marathoned it, it might have been a little more enjoyable, but certainly at times, the pacing is way too sluggish. Kumeta Kouji’s comedy emerges in a similar fashion to the jokes in SZS, but since it’s no where near the same pacing and quickness commonly seen in SHAFT’s works, half the time you will be sleeping. And I honestly think that this show would have been the sleeper hit of the season if only Akiyuki Shinbo had overseen the production.
Although the jokes are really genuinely funny, be warned that a great deal of the show is a snooze-fest. The character tropes ended up being the sole factor for keeping my interest: for example, Tetora’s godlike luckiness makes for some pretty silly scenes, although at the dismay of the other four girls. For whatever reason though, the show turned into a travel guide for Japan’s tourist attractions and more popular sections of cities by having the five girls go on a day trip to said tourist attractions and commenting on the history of the area in a quirky way.
The best part of this show? My vote would be its OP and ED. Sure these songs get obnoxious after a while, but the animations sure do work well with the song and the fact that the anime is a travel brochure. I can’t say I would recommend this show to anyone without a deep knowledge of Japanese culture, but it wasn’t the worst waste of time out there. Overall I give this show a depressing 5/10; I will probably never watch it again but I do acknowledge its funny parts and hilariousness.