What’s the show? Asobi Asobase, Episode 10.
And what’s this episode about? Don’t you hate it when a show does something that’s so good but you can’t adequately put it into words, or screencaps or even gifs because the humour is completely in the line delivery?
I wouldn’t know, I don’t watch anything, but I’ll take your word for it. So I take it there’s something like that in this episode? Yes! As a perfect contrast to Olivia—the blonde-haired Western looking girl who pretends to be foreign but actually can’t speak a word of English—we have Fujiwara a ~very~ Japanese looking girl, who everyone presumes is great at classical Japanese literature but who in-fact speaks in the most broken Japanese I’ve ever heard. And it’s absolutely amazing. I was laughing so hard the whole time she was on-screen. Also, I don’t often look into the background of voice actresses, but it turns out Fujiwara’s Seiyuu was born in Australia and lived there for 17 years before moving to Japan.
So pretty authentic then? Indeed! And this is only the first segment and I was already in hysterics, thankfully the other 3 segments contain their fair share of laughs too—though with a brief detour to the potentially problematic if you really want to be pedantic about it.
Okay, explain. Right, so Fujiwara overhears that Olivia can’t speak English and tries to blackmail Kasumi into going on a date with her(!) but before she can give an answer she’s ‘rescued’ by Tsugumi (the one who was rumoured to be a “boy in drag” from Episode 5) and by “rescued” I mean Tsugumi kisses Kasumi square on the lips! There’s a brief inquisition (didn’t expect that—but then again, nobody does!), Kasumi has a dream about Tsugumi’s penis and can’t get it out of her head. So the three girls rally together to find out whether or not she does have one in a bunch of roundabout and completely unsuccessful ways.
Are we invoking that this segment is “transphobic” again? Nah, I mean it’s borderline—if anything it’s just mildly creepy that Kasumi is so intent on looking up Tsugumi’s dress to see “what’s there” but they don’t actually say anything that I’d say qualifies as transphobic this episode, they’re just being silly girls. And by the way, all this happens over three of the four segments and I’m really glad for the continuity here. It really helps the show feel more connected rather than disparate randomness.
And the last segment? Probably the weakest of the four—it’s basically about Kasumi directing a short film for the ‘Pastimers Club’ to be presented at the school’s cultural festival. And there’s a few laughs here and there—especially when they break the forth-wall about “announcing a second season”—only to dash all our hopes by saying “that’ll never happen”. We can still dream, can’t we?
So opinion on the episode? Overwhelmingly positive… maybe my favourite episode of the season but to be honest that’s ~mostly~ to do with Fujiyama—I don’t know what it is, but hearing such a distinctive broken Japanese/Australian accent in an anime and coming from a girl like her was pure comedy gold plus the mere hint of this series going even a bit ‘yuri’ is quite promising!
Previous Asobi Asobase Reviews:
Laid Back Insanity – Episode 1 Review
Scarier Faces Than Any Horror Anime – Episode 2 Review
It’s All Fun and Games Until Somone Gets Compound Fractures Over Their Entire Body – Episode 3 Review
So Much Butt Stuff – Episode 4 Review
Youthful Transgressions – Episode 5 Review
A Boyfriend Built By Grandfather – Episode 6 Review
Getting It Off Your Chest – Episode 7 Review
Like A Batsu Outta Hell – Episode 8 Review
Brother’s Creeper – Episode 9 Review
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