Stereo Otaku Special 50th Update: 10 Notably Bad Anime Series

STEREO OTAKU SPECIAL 50TH UPDATE

10 Notably Bad Anime Series

DISCLAIMER: These are our own opinions about these anime, based on our own tastes and morals. Please don’t get offended if we rag on something you like—we don’t mean offense to fans of these anime, we just want to complain about stuff we didn’t like. These anime were mostly dropped after one episode, so the opinions presented here are all spot judgments that don’t reflect the later developments of any series. Normally we wouldn’t review anime we’ve dropped like this, but we’re doing it here for fun. Also, there are MAJOR spoilers ahead for Blood-C, so skip that review if you don’t want to be spoiled.

Kuroshitsuji

BLACK BUTLER

Watched via fansubs

Characters will make or break a series, and Black Butler has one of the worst casts. The secondary characters are all abysmal. Young master Ciel Phantomhive sells his soul to a demon in exchange for revenge on those who’ve wronged him in the past. So of course the demon, Sebastian, in the meantime works as his butler. Not the most original protagonists, but the two are decent enough to keep the series going. What really kills the series is watching Sebastian have to pick up after everyone else. Ciel has four other servants, all more useless than the last. Watching them whine and mess things up is either supposed to be funny, or to emphasize how competent Sebastian is in contrast, either way I’m not impressed.

The animation is gorgeous for the most part. The characters slip into wacky comical styles when they’re being “funny”, but other than that the series really stands out for being well drawn and designed. No matter how well drawn the characters are, I just can’t bring myself to care what happens to them. The young master and butler are just too stoic for me to form any sort of emotional connection with. It doesn’t help I’m totally over the whole “Victorian” aesthetic and supernatural drama that’s raging rampant in all shoujo.

This show is too pretty to have such an obnoxious cast. Maybe it’s because I don’t slash men very often, but I felt no connection to Ciel, while Sebastian just seems ridiculous for no reason while the rest of the waitstaff are completely incompetent. If I’m going to watch a series about an indentured, demonic servant, I’d rather go for Hellsing, where Alucard’s legitimately scary.

FINAL SCORE: (3/10)

rosario-vampire_15414_1

ROSARIO + VAMPIRE

Watched via fansubs

Somehow, ordinary boy Tsukune Aono ends up enrolled in Yokai Academy, a school built for monsters and other supernatural creatures. He quickly befriends the pink-haired Moka, who is an incredibly nice and ridiculously attractive vampire with a fetishized cross on her neck. When Tsukune removes her rosary (the fetishized cross), Moka’s inner badass gets released and she becomes a ruthless killing machine. A heap of other supernatural creatures, all female, seem to congregate around Tsukune, making this one giant harem anime.

I can’t stand harem anime, and I don’t do very well with excessive fanservice, so this series just doesn’t click with me. It opens with a panty shot, for Pete’s sake! From the first episode, the girls just seem crammed in to appeal to Tsukune (and the viewer), and the plot is random and tacked on so it appeals to horror fans. As someone who’s not into horror, this made the series even worse for me, as I’m pretty tired of vampires and everything else that runs around in this show. Give me a break.

What really irked me about this series was that it had a strong “monster of the week” vibe to it. I don’t mind tasteful harem series, or shows with supernatural elements. Rosario + Vampire just felt too gimmicky. I never felt as if the characters were purposefully introduced. It always felt like they were there as a monster checkoff list.

FINAL SCORE: (2/10)

Eat-Man

EAT-MAN

Watched via VHS

Wait a minute, he didn’t just eat that bolt with a straight face did he? Protagonist “Bolt Crank” has the wondrous ability to eat anything (get it, Eat-Man?) and later expel it from any part of his body to use as he will. With a great budget, special effects, and elegantly orchestrated sound effects, you’d think Eat-Man would be a ‘90s show stopper. That is until you get to the bizarrely over-the-top stoic characters with inane abilities like our our main character, Bolt Crank, and many others who all seem to be immortal, and a bit crazy to say the least.

Eat-Man is an episodic mess. There is no clearly identifiable plot, at least in the first two episodes, and characters are so idiotic that I just couldn’t force myself to care. Why should I care if Bolt Crank is mysterious? Who cares about his past? Nothing gets answered in this series, which would be a problem, if anyone actually felt compelled to keep watching it. Not even the bizarre premise was enough to keep me watching past two episodes.

Of all the things our old anime club purchased once upon a time on VHS, this is the strangest. With such a bizarre premise, how did this even get licensed in the US? I can’t imagine anyone going out of their way to watch this (though apparently someone in our anime club did).

FINAL SCORE: (3/10)

Kyoukai Senjou no Horizon - 01 - Large 05

HORIZON IN THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE

Watched via The Anime Network

I’m not really sure what the plot of this series is. The summaries that came up before this aired made it sound vaguely interesting, with mentions of an apocalypse and war, but the first episode is a mess. A hot teacher tells her class of warrior students to land a hit on her, so they all go running off across the city, showing off their physiques and techniques in a display of fanservice that panders so hard to the light novel readers that it excludes everyone else.

Furthermore, the characters are all boring or obnoxious. All of the women are heavily sexualized and distinguished only by their breast size (flat or ginormous) and their hair. The main character is arrogant and misogynistic in the worst of ways, and there’s a horrible racial stereotype of Indians floating around with a platter of curry. So, not only is this series confusing, but it’s also offensive in every possible way. Perhaps other people can get beyond these elements to enjoy the actual plot (?) of the series, but I’m left scratching my head about how it possibly led to a second season.

I had to re-watch the first episode of this series for the review because it literally left no impression on me and I couldn’t remember what it was about, not even after reading summaries. Re-watched the first episode to realize, oh wait, it has no plot, that’s why I couldn’t remember it. The series begins with a capture-the-flag type set up, with no real glimpse at the possible plot to come. Maybe it does go further than that, but I had no way of knowing or caring.

FINAL SCORE: (2/10)

Mosquiton

MASTER OF MOSQUITON OVA

Watched via VHS

Right so, Master of Mosquiton isn’t near as funny as it thinks it is. Spoiled teenaged brat Inaho revives wimpy partial human vampire “Alucard Von Mosquiton” with a drop of her blood, and manipulates him into helping her find the O-part. This magical item is supposed to grant the power of everlasting youth. Inaho seems to think everything mysterious or sparkly is the O-part, so there is a lot of time spent running around idiotically after stupid stuff. Then there is the love triangle aspect, which includes both Inaho and her ancestor, Alucard’s vampire wife, both fighting over Alucard in the nude more often than I’d like to see.

The animation may be good for an OVA of the time, but no amount of pretty can forgive how stupid the characters and plot are. As far as vampires go, Alucard is lame. Sure he goes into super badass mode when it comes down to it, but most of this OVA is spent in gag mode with him continually being killed and brought back to life or fawned over by half naked women.

Another relic of our anime club’s VHS days. At least shows like this prove that anime has always had a lot of crappy output with excessive fanservice.

FINAL SCORE: (3/10)

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AKAGI

Watched via fansubs

I wasn’t ready for this anime. This story is dark and dirty, about a kid named Akagi who stumbles into a game of mahjong and has to win to save his life, though he knows nothing about the game. The series is extremely anxiety-inducing, covering the many tricks Akagi uses to keep from losing, including putting his life on the line. I was interested by the series’s use of mahjong, but it goes for the game’s serious gambling roots, heading into territory where I’m not comfortable.

Everything about this series makes me uncomfortable. Heck, just looking at the artwork gives me the heebie-jeebies. Not only is it thematically dark and ugly, but the character designs are atrocious. They’re probably so ugly on purpose, but they still freak me out. Everyone is made of angular noses and thick lines that look like extremely disturbing caricatures of cartoons. Frankly, this series makes my skin crawl. I could see someone who loves manly men and dark intrigue liking it, but it’s pretty much the opposite of anything I want to watch, ever.

The artwork was ugly. Seriously, I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything less aesthetically pleasing. What is up with those noses? I really couldn’t get past the character designs on this one. I think it would have been easier to digest as a manga, but even so, the plot was just too male-centric for me to even care. Gambling, violence, crime, I just don’t care for any of it. It doesn’t interest me one iota.

FINAL SCORE: (1/10)

Mitsudomoe

MITSUDOMOE

Watched via Crunchyroll

I know, I know, it’s supposed to be comedy, but this show is freaking sick. The sexualization of elementary schoolers is just outright wrong. Mitsudomoe follows the lives of 6th grade Marui triplets as the girls sexually harass everyone and everything around them. Just watching this series makes me feel like washing in bleach. The character designs for the little girls goes above and beyond to emphasize what little secondary sexual traits the girls may already have.

Based off of a gag comic, the plot is episodic, having each episode feature several different subplots, each more depraved than the last. This series is running on Crunchyroll, and you have to be 18 or older to watch it. That right there just tells you how inappropriate the whole thing is. The characters are stereotyped and the only thing keeping this series going is the sick humor and shock value.

Yuck. I don’t like gross-out humor in the first place, but having a bunch of sexualized kids deliver it just makes it worse for me. This show can claim to be a parody all it wants, but you just know that someone’s getting off on it regardless. I think I need some brain-bleach after remembering this series’s awfulness.

FINAL SCORE: (2/10)

Blood-C - 05

BLOOD-C

Watched via fansubs

We watched this on a weekly basis in anime club, and I purposefully didn’t watch all of it so I could maintain that I’d dropped it because it’s so awful. I really wanted to like it, though. I’ve seen some of Blood+ and liked it, and I’m a fan of Clamp and their character designs. This show just seems dead-set on making you hate it, though, with a gigantic troll ending and either too little or way too much action for my tastes.

The series begins with Saya, who’s supposed to be an awesome vampire killer, if you know anything about the other Blood anime. However, this Saya’s a boring shrine maiden who sings the same awful song on her way to school. She spends six episodes going to school, eating sweets, and being with her friends. Then, the show turns everything around and reveals that it’s all been fake—Saya’s friends and family, even the town are all set up. The rest of the series involves lots of monsters ripping people apart and Saya being betrayed and attacked by everyone around her, only to set up a movie continuation. It’s horrible all around and just seems like an excuse for the series’s creators to have gratuitous horror violence while laughing in the audience’s faces about their stupid plot twists.

I’m so glad I didn’t see the middle of this series, however it’s totally worth seeing the last 3-5 episodes. I hated the characters and plot, and so it was quite refreshing to see it all torn apart, literally.

FINAL SCORE: (1/10)

Midori Days

MIDORI DAYS

Watched via fansubs

I have to admit, I find it hilarious that someone not only came up with the premise for Midori Days, but managed to convince enough people to make it into an anime. Delinquent Seiji Sawamura is the toughest guy in high school, but his badass reputation is making it hard for him to get a girlfriend. After being turned down twenty times in a row, he begins to lament that he’ll be stuck going through life with only his right hand to keep him company. Within seconds of his whining he comes to the realization that his right hand has transformed into a beautiful woman who has been in love with Seiji for the last three years.

Midori Days tries to spin itself into a heartfelt love story between two young adults, but really it’s all an excuse to make a new kind of sexy anime to pander to male audiences. Really I can only imagine this is used to fuel the fire of doujinshi. The hilarity of the premise was enough to get me to watch the first episode, but the plot, characters, and setting were all so mundane, that I had no reason to keep watching. The only thing unique about this series is the gimmick that was used to get people watching it. Once that fades, there’s nothing else. I gotta say though, I really like the ending song.

This is another instance of excessive fanservice boggling my mind. Who really wants to watch an anime about a girl replacing a guy’s hand? The character designs aren’t appealing, the characters are bland, and the comedy falls flat. So why does this exist?! And why did it get licensed?! I just don’t know.

FINAL SCORE: (2/10)

Kiss-x-Sis-TV-01-450x253

KISS X SIS TV

Watched via fansubs

What’s worse than the trolling of Blood-C? Incest. Kiss x Sis’s incest isn’t by blood, which seems to make it okay for everyone who enjoys the show, since the main guy is constantly being jumped by his two step-sisters. The guy, Keita, has grown up with his twin step-sisters, Ako and Riko, since he was five. This seems to me like it would be early enough for the Westermarck effect to take hold, but it is not so in this series.

Basically, the plot of this show is that Ako and Riko want to bone Keita, so they find various ways to seduce him and then get upset when they’re thwarted. Keita does not want to bone his sisters, so essentially the series is about attempted rape, which is somehow hilarious because some hot twins are the ones perpetrating that action. Even worse, Keita’s parents support their kids having sex and actively encourage it, again despite Keita’s feelings on the matter. To top it all off, the rest of Keita’s harem are other stereotypes and fetishes—the childhood friend with enuresis, or the teacher who’s a virgin. The entire series is created as fanservice to a select group of otaku, but it’s appallingly done and conflicts with every fiber of my being. Ew.

I hate this series with every fiber of my being. Why you might ask, because I am a twin sister with a younger brother. I know just how perfectly unrealistic and disgusting this whole set up is from every angle possible. I don’t care what they say, there is no way the Westermarck effect wouldn’t have taken place. No way. Also, rape is never funny, not even if it’s a guy.

FINAL SCORE: (1/10)

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6 thoughts on “Stereo Otaku Special 50th Update: 10 Notably Bad Anime Series

  1. Black Butler: Never was compelled to check out the series, and probably still won’t
    Rosario + Vampire: The anime is awful. They really butchered the manga series. And yet, this still got a S2. I can’t explain this either.
    Eatman: Never heard of it
    Horizon: I watched one ep, thought it had potential, but it was a mess of an episode. I have it on-hold, and not sure when I’m picking this up
    Master of Mosquiton: Never heard of it
    Akagi: I’m reminded of Kaiji. I hear that’s fairly good. Seems like it’ll be better than this lol
    Blood-C: WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEE (I dropped it after 3 eps in 2011. Let’s just say Funi sent me a disc of it for review. I reviewed it. There wasn’t a spare table to flip :|)
    Midori Days: Huh. I actually read a sample chapter of the manga many years ago and enjoyed it. Seems the anime may not be up to snuff
    Kiss X Sis: Why. Just why did you watch this lol

    • Our anime club voted on shows, and previewed 10-15 peer recommendations to vote on every semester. I’m pretty sure Kiss X Sis somehow ended up on that ballot. Luckily Crystal and I were so loud and made everyone feel so uncomfortable at our raging during the preview, that it got shot down. :3

      If you hated Blood-C, you should really check out the last couple episodes. It kind of made it all worth it. Then again, I can’t honestly recommend it since I know that it doesn’t really make up for having to watch it. :/ -W

      • I said I reviewed it. Generally when I review things I watch everything. That’s why I said there wasn’t a spare table for me to flip lol (And no, the last few episodes did not kind of made it all worth it. Not even the “best” episode, episode 11)

      • Whoops, I thought you meant reviewed one disk. ^^’ You’re right, ultimately not worth it. Maybe I’ll tackle Cross Game during my NEET time to appease Crystal. – W

  2. Gonna post some thoughts here.

    Regarding Mistudomoe when I was watching this series I did not once get the impression that 6th graders were being sexualized, I don’t get where these people think children are being sexualized. It is a work a fiction, not real life.

    Blood -C: I feel like one of the few people who actually liked the series. I hated the original movie, but I though this wasn’t all that bad. It’s no masterpiece of anime but I found it enjoyable.

    Midori Days – The manga had more fanservice than the anime did. I though the show was light on fanservice but I found it a charming little series.

    KissxSis – eh, I liked it, but to each their own.

  3. I thought Blood-C had potential when it started, however there was this uneasy feeling that it just had the most terrible execution in the starting episodes, nothing was good about it.

    I love CLAMP since CCS, TRS, XXXHolic, etc. I’m a sucker when it comes to their character and background designs they are completely amazing.

    I’ve only read Midori Days manga, well, most of the time I just read mangas because it’s just so hard to find good anime series. Since I read this like… 4-5 years ago I liked it, if I read it now I’ll probably say otherwise.

    As for KissXSis… let me begin by saying it’s the most retarded manga/show in existent (subjective as there are other retarded stuff out there). I can stomach incest subjects quite well, like Yosuga no Sora (there was another one really old, can’t find the name, ugh, it didn’t had any strong scenes, just drama). Be warned with Yosuga no sora though… let’s say it has… explicit material and as far as I know it turns out to be seriously creepy.

    Finally, I don’t even know how series like Black Butler make it to animation… I never found the manga anywhere interesting. Nothing about the characters is interesting :| it just fell flat.

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