Winter 2019 Anime

The Space Between A Girls Legs – ‘How Clumsy You Are, Miss Ueno’ Episode 1 Review

howclumsymissueno1

What’s the show? How Clumsy You Are, Miss Ueno. Episode 1.

So how’s this episode? “Charmingly relatable”.

What’s with the “quotation marks”? I’m quoting the irlwaifu’s response to the episode when I asked her after we watched it.

And why is that specifically important to this review, you don’t normally afford us with her opinions on all the other shows you watch? It’s not important who said it, it’s just important that someone other than me said it.

Presenting this image before providing the context is fun. Read on for the delicious context.

Why? Because this show has some potentially “questionable” subject matter and I didn’t want the readers to think I was pardoning the show just because I’m seen as something of a pervert around these parts. And that the show does have merit beyond its sexual humour.

Some of her past attempts weren’t subtle but apparently unsuccessful too. 

Right. So what’s it about first? Ueno is a genius middle-schooler who invents all manner of weird and wonderful devices, but the one thing she can’t invent is a way for the boy she likes, Tanaka, to notice her feelings for him. Although she tries, coming up with all manner of weird experiments/inventions that she hopes will bring them closer together.

Okay, sounds pretty wholesome so far, what’s the first thing she tries? She invents a device that can purify any liquid, no matter how filthy into drinking water and so she tries to get him to drink a beaker of her purified urine.

Clean comedy.

What possible justification does she have to make him do that, and what’s that got to do with her trying to confess her feelings?! She’s a middle schooler, she doesn’t know how to articulate her feelings, and she’s an awkward science-inclined girl too, the way I see it this and (other experiments/inventions) are the only ways she can think of for how to get closer to him. Don’t you remember being a kid and trying all sorts of stupid things to get your crush to notice you, like pulling off risky stunts or making a fool of yourself or being weird? It’s basically a right of passage in growing up that you find someone you like and you absolutely fail at articulating your feelings for them.

Please, for the love of god just someone drink her piss!

Okay and what else does she try? In the second half of the episode she invents a device that uses dark matter to project an area of literal space underneath her skirt so she can flash him without actually flashing him, all the while he gets her to observe and record the results for their science club. And as needlessly complicated at it is, it’s a pretty inventive way of flashing without flashing–especially when she ups the ante by saying she’s not wearing any underwear!

Uh-huh… and I’m guessing that doesn’t work either? No, Tanaka is clueless as to what’s going on–much to Ueno’s eternal frustration.

I feel like they missed an opportunity for a ‘Uranus’ joke but I’m guessing that pun doesn’t work in Japanese.

I see, so what are your overall thoughts on the first episode and who do you recommend it too? I think it’s a kind of endearing little show, I mean it’s far from perfect, it’s already a bit repetitive and Tanaka being as clueless as he is proves to be annoying rather than amusing. But Ueno herself is charming in her own ~unique~ way as is her white-haired friend Yamashita. They have a good double-act and I think it’ll be fun to see what other weird and wonderful ways Ueno tries to get closer to Tanaka. Also, while the comedy is sexual in nature I don’t think its sexualised because these are just her attempts to get him to notice her, her end goal isn’t being intentionally raunchy (at least that’s how I see it). The series seems to benefit from being a 12 minute anime as any longer would stretch each joke too thin. If you’re fond of single-minded comedies and are wistful for the simpler times of youth this could be an entertaining watch for you.

Well this is an anime, guys are kind of like that in anime. You’ll get used to it, Miss Ueno!


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4 replies »

  1. I thought the show did pretty well with a 8th-9th grade mindset, in that Ueno thinks that pushing adult boundaries are going to engage Tanaka, and that because they haven’t yet she has to keep upping the ante. The show gave a nice feel of this not being a new situation, which gave us a justification for her going all the way to no-pan and pee in this first episode (not knowing much about the show, I initially expected her to be lying about the pee in the first skit, but fairly quickly realized she’s not). I do think that Ueno has a good point about Tanaka being a rather odd middle school boy, given that he’s more annoyed by her than interested in the situations she sets up. And maybe that unseen history is what has pushed him to ignore the actual situations, kind of like the proverbial frog boiling in the water that heated up around it. He’s just gotten used to it because she’s slowly ramped it up. And in the end, we get this situation where she’s going waaaaay too far in the wrong direction for the result she wants.

    I liked the tone this had, and it gives me a feel that it’s not going to get ridiculously absurd. Like they went for some of the most absurd right off the bat. But we’ll see about that. All the characters feel like good people, tho.

    Liked by 1 person

    • True, and the fact that the wikipedia page promises a lot of supporting characters speaks well to its overall longevity. Its a shame there seems to be a lot of people against this show (at least amongst the anibloggers I follow) because this series has a promise that’s overlooked by people who seek to shoot-down ‘unconventional’ rather than understand and celebrate it.

      Like

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