If everyone had a student council (and schoolmates) akin to Seitokai Yakuindomo school life would be anything but dull. For the rest of us, observing from a far is the best option possible. Nonetheless, still enjoyable.
Title: Seitokai Yakuindomo (Literal Translates to: Student Council Yakuindomo)
Episodes: 13 (+ 3 OVA’s and counting)
Producer: GoHands (Licensed by StarChild Records)
Genre: Comedy, Shouenen, School, Ecchi
Recommended/Similar Titles: Seitokai no Ichizon, MM!, B Gata H Kei, Yuru Yuri,
Synopsis (MAL edited)
Tsuda Takatoshi is about to begin his first year in Ousai Academy. His decision to enter Ousai was based upon it being close to his home and he paid no heed to the fact he’d be among the first boys to enter the recently gender-integrated school. However, Tsuda is in for a rude awaken when he meets Ousai’s Student Council and now appointed to be in their ranks. Unbeanounced to him, these girls are anything, but normal. And so begins Tsuda’s daily school life which might be more than he bargain for.
Classic slapstick comedy is still alive and well in Japan. Now, keep that formula the same and add in some sexual humor, eye popping statements, and jokes are bound to make a Western go “Lol. Wut?.” then you end up the anime equivalent Seitokai Yakuindomo. Adapted from its 4-korma roots, the story is basically a free stroll of things as we follow Tsuda and his fellow student council members: second-year president Shino Amakusa, second year Aria Shichijou, and first year Suzu Hagimura as well as their fellow body student body as they go about daily life and do what they do best. I am not sure if making you laugh with their mannerism is apart of the goal, but get a passing score if it is. That said, it is just something satisfying with young, teenager girls using obscene humor that is just so much more refreshing than guys. Not sure what why that is, but all the same, Seitokai Yakuindomo will have you grinning ear to ear from each episodic segments you watch.
Other than the student council, the secondary characters are just as interesting and help with keeping the comedic gold coming. With cast members like: Judo club captain Mutsumi Mitsuba, newspaper club shutterbug Ranko Hata, Naruko Yokoshima, the lecherous teacher (and public enemy #1 for guys) Tsuda’s kid sister, Kotomi, and many others; dull is not a word in this series vocabulary. The voice actors (or actress) are well-received names familiar with most anime viewers such as: Youko Hikasa (Shino Amakusa), Sayuri Yaghagi (Suzu Hagimura), Chiaki Omigawa (Mutsumi Mitsuba), and Kato Emiri (Kaede Igarashi) to name a few. If you familiar with series like: K-on, Hidamari Sketch, Baka Test, Lucky Star and so on, you heard them before.
GoHands is primary animation studio for Seitokai Yakuindomo (aided by smaller subsidiary Dream Force) that is responsible and successful for transforming the manga into its anime counterpart. GoHands does not have much of record for itself (other than Princess Lover and Mardock Scramble), but its animation prowess is remarkably astounding for such an unknown. Crisp details of their style are seen more than just in the characters themselves, but also the backgrounds; which is strong plus for series of Seitokai’s nature. It might deserve it, but all the better it was not budgeted. The music also stands out somewhat, but only in the means of the Opening, ending, and insert themes rather than the actually soundtrack for the show. An example of this includes the formation of the three leading voice actors: Hikasa, Satou, and Yahagi becoming the group Triple Booking to do the Opening and the infamous duo Angela performing out of their norm for the ending theme. Along with Princess Lover. this series, and new one OVA (Asa Made Jugyou Chu!) waiting in the wings, the director, Hiromitsu Kanazawa is quite new to the game just as the studio is itself and his script writer, Makoto Nakamura. How experienced will this director and his staff members will become turns into an interesting question.
Seitokai Yakuindomo was a great joy to watch as well as shock for me. When it first debuted I was sort of in disbelief, since I had not been introduced to a show of its classification with regards to jokes and mannerism. This was also before the time I had knowledge of the shows source material, so coming into the series fresh was a advantage and after awhile, it began to grow on me, and I eventually came to enjoy it. That said, the slapstick is definitely a hodgepodge of things and sometimes might be over most westerns head with referring to wordplay, historical subtext, and other Japanese centric mainstream, if not sub stream happenings. However for the most part, their are jokes that anyone can get and juvenile as they are, you can not help, but laugh. Repetitive in nature, but still funny. One the biggest surprises was Youko Hikasa’s voice over, which some known her best for the role of Mio in K-ON, but besides that role for me, she often would be cast in soft spoken or enigmatic roles rather than someone of Shino’s personality. A great break role for her in my opinion. My bluray review copy had nice playback value and the quality itself was free from inconsistencies, banding, or another studio mishaps. However, their seems not to be much improvement between the TV aired version and Blurays; expect for a few graphical scale changes.
Seitokai Yakuindomo definitely is not for everyone, but for the adventurous and bold, it might be far enjoyable than imaginable. It does have some minor nuisances, but they are far outweighed by the positive and in most cases disregarded. With the OVA’s in progress, I can only hope that they hint toward a second season, but really is fine without one. If you like brash humor, amusing antics, and all other manner of random silliness, this series might be up your alley. If everyone had a student council akin the members of Ousai, school life would be more picturesque and enjoyable, yet for the most of us, looking from far is good enough.
Pros: Humorous characters, beautiful animation, excellent voicing cast.
Cons: Repetitive jokes, some humor might not be received by western audience without explanation.