31 December 2016

Random Reviews Chapter-16: Mojo Life (Watamote)



This blog went on a bit of a hiatus due to a combination of writer's block and getting a connection timed out error every time I tried to access this site. All that's solved now and I'm back with another Random Review.

I should probably warn you; Watamote is the anime that replaced Mirai Nikki as my favorite anime. So don't expect a 100% unbiased review. I will however, try to remain as unbiased as I can while reviewing this. Now let's begin.

"Watashi ga Motenai no wa dou Kangaete mo Omaera ga Warui", which translates to "No Matter How I Look at it, It's You Guys' Fault I'm Not Popular" or Watamote for short, is a slice of life anime. I think the best way to describe it would be a super depressing version of Lucky Star.

This anime follows the life of Kuroki Tomoko, a girl who just got into high school and expects to be instantly popular. Why? 'Cause, she's already lived 50 years as a high-schooler and dated over 100 boys! In otome games. It goes as well as you'd expect and she's a loner in school. To make matters worse, her already poor social skills have degraded to unnatural levels. Now she tries to be popular with various schemes and plans. All of which end horribly.

I have to give the anime credit. It managed to create a truly relatable character without resorting to blank slates. Tomoko has a distinct personality which separates her from other characters and situations in the anime are fully relatable. Tomoko is an introvert. But unlike other introverts, she's trying to NOT be an introvert. This is what lands her into extremely embarrassing situations. Now, this anime can be really funny if it's humor is something that appeals to you. If not, then it's a complete and utter cringe-fest. You feel bad for Tomoko but at the same time you feel that she deserves whatever she's suffering at that time. And if you're like me, laughter is another thing that's added into the mix.

It's opening isn't something I care for. It's probably 'cause it isn't my kind of music. In my opinion however the opening suffers from another bigger problem; it doesn't give you much of a clue as to what the show is about. If anything, it looks like the opening to some horror or gritty and violent anime. Neither of which is the case for Watamote. It's music however is played creatively. By that, I mean it adds a lot of "stress?" to mundane situations. I don't really know how to express it. But whenever it's used, I can't help but smile and feel bad for Tomoko at the same time.

Its visuals are also used the same way the music is. Many situations and emotions are expressed with the help of visuals. It works well to establish a connection between the protagonist and the viewers.

One complaint I always hear is that it's got no progression. But I disagree. Though at a glance it seems that nothing changes except the passage of time, that's not the case. I believe that in real life, it's really hard to notice the constant changes. The same can be said about this anime. In the entire anime, the single most noticeable change comes at the very end. Tomoko is seen looking at the same definition of Mojo (Creepy Lady) at the end. She then says, "I don't care anymore." In my opinion, the plot did progress. Tomoko is still as unpopular as she was before but now she doesn't care about being popular anymore. And to an extent, she also doesn't care about what others think of her.

On a side note, this change is more evident in the manga. She doesn't outright say it but she stops trying at some point. This is clear if you go back to the first few chapters after you've gone through a lot of the story. So in my opinion, things do change. Just not the things we were expecting to change. I personally really liked the ending. It was quite satisfying and complete.

One more problem is that Tomoko is pretty much ignored by all her classmates. As highschooler myself, I can tell you that this almost never happens in real life. Even if you try to stay alone, it's still quite difficult. Though I'm not from Japan so I don't know if this is easier to pull off there or not.

Another thing I should mention that this is jam-packed with references. If you have watched any kind of anime, chances are you'll understand at least one of these references.

Over all, I'd say this anime is depressing and funny at the same time. It's really enjoyable if you don't mind super embarrassing situations and the humor is your kind of humor. if neither of these is something you like, then I say you should avoid it 'cause chances are you'll hate it.

Finally, tell me what you thought of this anime. Did you like it or hate it? Or are you somewhere in the middle (which is somewhat rare).

I rate this: 90/100

Thanks for reading!

No comments:

Post a Comment