What’s the important information? Chio’s School Road is a Summer 2018 comedy anime that aired 12 episodes from July to September. It is a partial adaptation of a 9 volume Seinen manga series by Tadataka Kawasaki.
What’s it about? Very simply, it’s about Chio Miyamo a below average high-school girl and avid video gamer and the various antics she gets up to on her daily commute from her house to her school. The shenanigans range from strange conversations with her friend Manana to things absurd as encounters with biker gangs, risky parkour and run-ins with a butt-poking elementary schooler.
Why did you watch it? The series sold itself as an ‘absurd comedy’ and I’m all about that!
Did you enjoy the show? Absolutely, it delivered on the absurdity and also solidified it with a truly great cast of characters and a seemingly expanding world of quirky characters that inhabited the series. Even the weakest of episodes had laugh-out-loud moments and imagery worthy of surreal screen caps.
What was your favourite episode? While every episode had a worthwhile and hilarious segment (each episode of the show is divided into either 2 or 3 ‘segments’), Episode 7 which concerned Chio discovering the “joys” of BL (Boys Love) games and trying to buy a magazine about it and then following that up with the first appearance of the butt-poking elementary schooler had me in tears of laughter from beginning to end! Not to mention all the references to the differences between Western and Japanese video games.
What were your most favourite things about the show? Aside from the comedy—which ran the gamut from slapstick, to wordplay, to non-sequiturs, to cringe, to character driven. Chio herself was an absolute joy to behold, the way her mind works was not only frequently hilarious but also surprisingly relatable—especially as a gamer myself.
Wbat were your least favourite things about the show? There were a couple of repeat characters that Chio encountered that weren’t perhaps as funny as the show thought they were, the pervert homeless man especially was a character whose appearance only cheapened the overall quality of the show.
Who was your favourite character? I want Chio to be my girlfriend. Is that weird? That’s probably weird… But seriously, I really love Chio’s general outlook on life—even if it is striving for mediocrity for the sake of living life unnoticed. Plus she’s just cute in that nerdy kind of way!
What’s something unique about this show? Episode 2 just straight up dropped the c-word and I still can’t get over that fact! Yes it was just in text and yes the c-word doesn’t really have the same vulgar/taboo connotations in Japan as it does in the west but I was still flabbergasted to see it on-screen! Amazing and hilarious.
What other anime are most like it for the sake of comparison? For some reason I’m reminded of Yuruyuri, though moreso the later half of the season where the comedy gets more character driven as opposed to absurd ‘sketch’ style. Also, if you want a Western sitcom comparison, it definitely at times reminded me of Seinfeld, in that these people are all kind of dysfunctional jerks, but they’re absolutely relatable.
Who would you recommend it to? Anybody who likes their comedy on the more ~absurd~ end of the spectrum, obviously not Pop Team Epic levels of absurdity but still grounded in reality. Also, there’s a lot of references to Western video games which even if you’re not a fan of them there’s a lot of fun to be gained to just see the Japanese perspective on something that’s apparently very unusual to them that a lot of us probably take for granted as being ‘normal’.
Sum up the season in one sentence: ‘The road ahead is twisted and filled with obstacles but they’re all a part of silly and strange journey that I’m glad to have taken!’
Final score? 88 out of 100.
Previous Chio’s School Road Reviews:
Otaku’s Creed – Episode 1 Review
The Actual C-Word – Episode 2 Review
Full Contact Perineum – Episode 3 Review
Stupid Sexy Smoking – Episode 4 Review
Urine Trouble – Episode 5 Review
The Art of Butt Groping – Episode 6 Review
Public Enema Number One – Episode 7 Review
Sprinter Belle – Episode 8 Review
Pipe Dreams – Episode 9 Review
The Sweeter Life – Episode 10 Review
Sleeping On The Bank Job – Episode 11 Review
No Panties, No Problems! – Episode 12 Review
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