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Kyuujitsu no Warumono-san (Mr. Villain’s Day Off) – 08

Kyuujitsu no Warumono-san has so much going for it, truly.  For the record, we haven’t talked about it much but the best episode previews of the season – and those are something of a lost art in anime, with many shows abandoning them altogether.  One of the things I noticed about the top ten “niche” list I just published is that the series on it were in a very narrow band as regards MAL score – most of them right around the low 7’s.  And Mr. Villain’s Day Off is at 7.15, like clockwork.  I think it reflects that these sorts of shows are easy to take for granted.  And maybe that they’re not trying to reach a broad audience (which may be the secret to their appeal).

I quite like the way this show dispenses with conventional narrative structure and just goes with it.  The dream sequences are fascinating – sometimes just comically absurd (like a panda wiping off its pattern with a towel) but also revealing the true nature of the General.  After that short towel vignette came what I assume is some seeding of future plot, with an announcement that the Uenono Zoo is going to return their pandas to China.  That may or may not have led to the dream Warumono-san had in the final segment, but we’ll get to that shortly.

Next up is a charming segment featuring Rooney, the longest one so far.  Mikan are the order of business here – lots of mikan.  Rooney and the general sitting under a kotatsu, engaging in a  mikan sculpture-making contest – hard to imagine anything more Kyuujitsu than that.  Mad skills are on display here, culminating in a mini-kotatsu and a mini-human (who appears to be either embracing or humping a mikan).  Sometimes the RL sequences here are just as surreal as the dream sequences.

This week was definitely a throwback to Episode 3, as that too featured Rooney’s infatuation with kotatsu and a visit from Santa-san.  I don’t think we can officially call that a Christmas episode though, as there’s no evidence that it was actually Xmas time outside the dream (though certainly winter).  Santa is back in Warumono-san’s dreams, but this time the reason is clear – the General has been obsessing over the human concept of Christmas presents, and what to get Rooney as part of the latter’s suggested gift exchange.  Again we hit on something deeper here with Warumono’s question about whether one gives gifts to make themselves happy, and Santa-san not denying it, but we’re never hit over the head with such things with this series.

It definitely is Christmas for reals this time, as we pay a visit to the Ranger household (I guess none of them live with actual families.  We get our first extended look at Black (Umehara Yuichirou), and he appears to be the de facto patriarch of the group.  He buys presents for everyone, not just the little ones.  Back at HQ Rooney and the General prove great minds think alike, each going the obvious route (mikan).  This winds up pissing Trigger off, but it’s clearly established that it doesn’t take a lot to do that.

Finally, the dream that really gives us some insight into the workings of Warumono-san’s mind.  The meat bun pitching its own deliciousness (“Oishii, yo”) was my favorite moment, but this was all gold.  This was like a survey course of all of the General’s obsessions – animals, snack foods – with bears for the most part taking center stage (though of course red pandas aren’t bears).  It’s all building towards the reveal of the final boss, there to pitch the appeal of the cat.  And I think this is one of those examples of where Kyuujitsu no Warumono-san – and most of the series which share its sensibility and niche – either work for you or they don’t.  I can’t explain why that climactic moment was so brilliant – if you know, you know.

The post Kyuujitsu no Warumono-san (Mr. Villain’s Day Off) – 08 appeared first on Lost in Anime.

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