In a season with the likes of Ro-Kyu-Bu and Sacred Seven, it’s hard to be labeled the most derivative offering currently airing. But Yuru Yuri, being the overachiever that it is, takes the award for most unoriginal first episode, as well as the award for most boring imitation of Lucky Star. Congratulations K-ON, you’ve been dethroned. I would also give it my First Impressions Award for most annoying OP, but Kaitou Tenshi Twin Angel somehow managed to beat it with such a screechy piece of work that it makes the god awful Yuru Yuri opening shine like the North Star.
What’s even worse is it isn’t even the token loli show of the season, so it has no identity to call its own. Strangely enough though, Yuru Yuri actually had a few sparks of brilliance in this first episode amidst the usual school life tropes and Shoujo-Ai overtones. That already puts it ahead of Ro-Kyu-Bu. With what I assume to be nods to other, much better anime series and a self aware nature that isn’t just pointing stuff out that it’s doing wrong, it has just enough for me to watch one more episode to see if this remains a trend or dies out as everything settles into its predictable, forgettable place.
As usual in Slice of Life series with this premise, there isn’t much of a plot to speak of. A group of friends enter a school, shenanigans ensue, and a girl that at least looks younger than all of them is brought into the fold to bear all the misfortune of being around a group of horny sociopathic teenage girls. Except instead of high school, they’re all going into middle school, which makes the affair even creepier than similar shows. It also has the older sister of the lead infatuated with said lead, if you weren’t creeped out already.
With a nonexistent plot, characters who have yet to remain distinguishable from the many other archetypes that populate the genre, and adequate animation, Yuru Yuri isn’t anything to get excited over. It’s downright boring in some parts, or at the very least inconsequential. I left the show running while an old friend was messaging me, checked in after ten minutes, and didn’t miss a thing.
The bit pointing out a silly magical girl scenario and a few shots stolen from other anime series do not make make up for the persistent air of tired mediocrity, leaving this as something that you can miss unless you absolutely must watch every single loli related show this season. In which case, I’ll have to ask you to keep such a fact to yourself.
Kaitou Tenshi Twin Angel: Kyun Kyun Tokimeki Paradise
As few and far between as they were, Yuru Yuri did have its moments of legitimate decency. Kaitou Tenshi Twin Angel lacks any of that though, only succeeding in simultaneously sapping away my will to live and destroying my ear drums with extremely high pitched frequencies that are passed off as singing and dialogue.
So two schoolgirls fight crime as twin magical girls, one red and one blue. That’s your original premise for this one. The villainous team, in this case portrayed by an incompetent and slightly diabolical Victorique, her loyal and obsessive sidekick, and a multitude of robots easily defeated by the two main girls, are out to steal a tiara from the girls’ school, and the two must stop them before they can get away with their plan.
To stop them, the villain decides to turn them into cats and almost succeeds, until the Deus Ex Mac- I mean a mysterious hero shows up, who’s totally not the student council president from earlier in the episode. He saves the day, the two girls return the tiara, and the villains plan their next move.
What makes Kaitou Tenshi baffling instead of simply bad is the seemingly tongue in cheek approach to the plot. Everything about it is horrible, but it seems in the know about this revelation and rolls with it. It comes off as something very similar to Scream, which runs a generic plot while occasionally pointing out just how generic it is. Also, the girls laugh way too fucking much. After the first couple times, it really becomes noticeable.
Kaitou Tenshi isn’t bad because it has outlandish scenarios, intentionally cookie cutter characters, horrendous dialogue, or gratuitous fanservice. It’s bad because it somehow takes all these elements and makes them as boring as physically possible, seemingly on purpose. It’s a giant “Fuck you” to the audience for watching it, and no matter what, nothing should be praised for that.
In short, even if you have nothing to do and are looking for anything to keep yourself entertained, you’ll hate yourself for watching this.