Otakus are gonna love this. Abenobashi Mahou Shoutengai
spoofed, ripped off, and ridiculed many anime genres and even popular movies,
TV shows and pop cultures from all over and fused it into a 13-episode series.
We follow the pursuits of two characters Sasshi and Arumi as they unlock a mystery
of the shopping district they live in, which would transport them into different
kinds of worlds but it is actually the same shopping district with the same people
in it. The energy of the series is quite similar to their other work FLCL, and
all the cross-border themes seemed quite like Excel Saga. Sadly, this also
the type of anime that distances itself with other people especially when their
humor and jokes are very specific. For example, if you don't know anything about
Sailor Moon, you won't get some jokes. If you don't know about bishoujo
games, you won't understand all the spoofing they had done with it. It seems to
tell you 'If you don't get the joke, tough luck', but the more you know, the more
you enjoy. So show off how much you know by watching this anime, and laugh it
all off. I watched it and enjoyed it, but I don't think I'll be watching it again
I wasn't expecting much off Abenobashi Mahou Shoutengai
when I first watched it. However, my expectations were answered. Yes, it wasn't
my type. However, being on a patient mood, I continued viewing. Midway through
the series starting on the time when Masa-ji was reflecting back to his younger
days, the series became surprisingly good. Fortunately, my interest has continued
until the final episode.
As for the characters, both
leads are highly annoying. Sasshi is a stupid pervert and Arumi is an abusive
nudie. Both talk fast and are the type to get bitch-slapped for speeding. There
are lots of fanservice from Mune-Mune and Sasshi's Rei-on-crack-like sister.
can't really recommend this to anyone because it's on the cartoony side of things.
However, the 2nd half of the series was good enough to save it from a steer-clear
rating. I actually like this series and glad that I viewed it to the end.
Abenobashi Magical Shopping District is a wonderful
animation starting two memorable characters Sasshi and Arumi. Arumi is a very
strong and funny female character who shows quite a bit of skin in Abenobashi
Magical Shopping District. She accompanies Sasshi to different worlds after
the seal of Abenobashi Magical Shopping District is broken. Sasshi meanwhile,
is a perverse, errr
what should I say, normal teenager. This anime is hard
to score because of its complex background. People who do not watch show such
as Gundam, Neon Genesis Evangelion, Sailormoon, western cowboy
movies, Jurassic Park and who do not show little interest in RPG and bishoujo
game[pretty girl; hentai game] WILL NOT appreciate this anime. Fortunately, I
have watched and played all the things mentioned above. You really have to watch
a lot of anime to truly get and appreciate the humor and parody Gainax
put in Abenobashi Magical Shopping District. For example, I did not really
get the episode where Sassi and Arumi ended up in Hong Kong, but I laughed my
head off and had to tape my head back to my neck in the hentai bishoujo episode.
This is a funny anime not to be missed, please watch the anime titles mentioned
above before you start watching Abenobashi Magical Shopping District, otherwise
you will lost.
I'll refrain from writing a synopsis as there are already enough
complete descriptions in the reviews below. The reason I got into this title was
primarily because Hayashibara Megumi provided the vocals for both the opening
and ending songs. Sadly she's nowhere to be found in the cast, although Hayashibara
Megumi does give her usual note-worthy performance. Abenobashi Mahou Shoutengai
attempts to be a character study with regard to its two leads Sassi and Arumi.
Although they are for the most part well acted and cleverly written and do play
off each other quite well, this title fails to break any new ground. If parodies
fit your sense of humour this one's worth a look.
Here we have an immense waste of time, no plausible plot, a
terribly annoying serious subplot introduced later on, two of the more forgettable
characters in anime, and some of the lamer parodies in anime, see The Simpsons
has reached a stage where they no longer need to bother with a storyline, they
can make entire episodes out of simply poking fun at itself and its characters,
they are brilliant at this but thankfully they haven't become lax and decided
to do so, Gainax have, and as perhaps they may realized from this series,
they aren't very good at it. Gainax disappoint me, Eva, Kare
Kano, FLCL, with a run of such high quality anime it was hard to consider
them anything but favoured by the gods, far out doing the new found 'quality'
run of Gonzo, who are the new spirit children, there are numerous other
production groups who are sitting quietly by never attracting any particular hype
these days but putting out masterpieces, Bones and Studio Pierrot,
and of course Sunrise, Bandai and Production I.G., Fuji
TV along with relative new comers WOWOW who aren't hyped but are constant
names in credible anime series, Gainax will always be remembered, but not
necessarily for good reasons, and with their current run of that hamster porn
show also know as Ebichu, Mahoromatic, Abenobashi Mahou Shoutengai
and some pathetic looking new addition to this rather lack lustre line it can
really cause an avid follower of Gainax to falter and consider other options
and lose any excitement when hearing that Gainax are releasing something
new. This series is some pathetic attempt at the manic and the sentimental and
the realization of their stature, the creation of arrogant lazy fools, send it
back to the abyss.
One of the strangest parody shows yet, follows a pair of kids,
Sasshi and Arumi, as they jump to different warped versions of their familiar
shopping district home in search of the one they came from. Of course, each new
shopping district matches a different genre of entertainment, like Hong Kong action
or high school romance, which makes the proceedings perfect for wild parody and
general mayhem. The duo is fun to watch, though it's the hapless but well-meaning
Sashi who often steals the show. The few constant plot threads are well developed
and interesting, and the parody elements are spot on. The only detracting element
is the dizzying level of fanservice and truly perverse humor that crosses the
line a few times too many.
GAINAX keeps up
its reputation for gorgeous animation, bizarre storytelling, and appealing characters.
With a frantic pace and direction to match, the series leans more towards slapstick
comedy than straight dramatics, though the serious bits that provide the real
grounding and substance of the show are handled quite brilliantly. The strain
of the neccessity of creating the universe from scratch for every episode starts
to show by the end, but the quality level is still consistently high throughout.
The mystic omnyouji subplot is a little hard for the unfamiliar to grasp, but
it's used to good effect and the main point comes through. Not a particularly
deep or accomplished acheivement, but it's a unique, impressive, and definitely
different outing for the studio. And it's funny. Very, very funny.
Gainax strikes again. Apparently seeking to outdo Excel
Saga, they make a show which parodies various Anime genres. Sounds familiar?
Well being Gainax, their parodies are far more madcap, contain far more
crude humor, and have far wilder antics? Sounds good, doesnt it. HOWEVER,
in the middle of the show, they attempt to introduce a "serious" element
to it. While it was done fairly well in Excel Saga, the serious element
in Abenobashi Mahou Shoutengai clashes with the overall zaniness of the
rest of the show. Its also around that time when the zaniness becomes a
bit TOO over the top. As opposed to Excel Saga, this show has no plot,
and its only a short hop from "no plot" to "no point."
Those fellas at Gainax sure come up with strange stuff
at times. Arumi and Sasshi are two youngsters lamenting life in Abenobashi's shopping
district, which has seen its best days a long time ago. A critical event transports
them into a weird world, and that's when the insanity begins.
of the episodes are wacky parodies of all the stuff Sasshi likes - from mecha,
dinosaurs, RPGs, dating sims, war, movies and more. These episodes are all over
the place, taking place in a perverted twist on Abenobashi itself, complete with
the various inhabitants in different roles. The references are plentiful, with
pokes at Akira, Cardcaptor Sakura, Love Hina, Kanon,
and even Gainax' own Evangelion (except this time it's Sasshi who
has to get into the damn robot). Then there are the more serious episodes which
provide backstory and goes more into character development, as Sasshi has to face
reality in order to return to the real Abenobashi.
exhibits tons of different visual styles. The more serious episodes are drawn
more realistically, showcasing Gainax' excellent design and animation skills,
while the parody episodes exhibits more simplistic art styles.The various styles
and the expressiveness of the characters made it quite a joy to watch.
not all jokes were succesful, I'm quite impressed with Abenobashi Mahou Shoutengai.
Like FLCL before it, it's another original twist on the growing up tale,
though more focused on providing absurd situations and silly humor.
Following the destruction of a pelican statue, related to one
of the Four Gods, Arumi and Sasshi find themselves transported to a fantasy world
and from there on its up to them to move from one world to the next in an attempt
to make it back to their own. That's the basic plot of Abenobashi Mahou
Shoutengai but coming out of Gainax this 13 episode series is
something of a disappointment given the kind of quality shows that the studio
The main problem with the series
is that it's not entirely sure what it wants to be. The series sets itself up
based heavily upon Excel Saga where most episodes revolve around
a parody of a particular genre; hence the first world Arumi and Sasshi visit is
an RPG world parody. Yet within this comedy setting Abenobashi
simply doesn't match up to Excel Saga. For the most part it doesn't
use parody to the same humorous extent that Excel Saga did and
nor is it willing to be as extreme as that same series was, which was precisely
what made Excel Saga so fun to watch. This problem is confounded
by the fact that for certain episodes the series tries to be very serious, the
final result being that the series is neither an amusing comedy nor a touching
This might not matter so much
if other key elements to the anime were decent but unfortunately they're not either.
The plot is for the best part of the series little more than an excuse to have
Arumi and Sasshi going around these different worlds and baring one or two episodes
it doesn't really hook you in. Excel Saga got away with this
because its entire plot almost effectively was just a different parody each episode
and it was funny enough to make you want more. The characters in Abenobashi
also suffer from the constant world swapping. Aside from Arumi, Sasshi and Utas
all the other individuals change within the different worlds and thus they don't
really build up a consistent character and that's not particularly satisfying
to watch either.
One really would expect better from
Gainax especially considering how well they pulled off a comic series
with serious undertones in Furi Kuri. But matching up to that
or Excel Saga is a very hard task. Abenobashi
has its great comic moments but unfortunately they're a bit too scarce to make
this a consistently entertaining series.