Posted by psgels on 23 June 2011 with categories: Spring 2011 Kaleidoscope



One sub-genre of shounen that I’ve been missing for quite a while: the ones based around playing games. And I don’t mean those stupid kiddie shows that are meant to sell toys or cards, I mean the ones that are based around the characters involved playing various games and try to be creative with that. Of course these kinds of arcs can be terrible if the creators don’t make them fun to watch, as it’s impossible to get a good plot out of that, but I can enjoy a good tournament arc once in a while. Sket Dance is a very nice example of this.

It’s not just the characters playing games that was fun about these past two episodes. In fact, the way the games are won is about the only predictable part. What also makes these episodes so great is characters like Bossun fidgeting from the sidelines, or the energy that this series has, setting every of the games up. I especially loved the stress in trying to find the fifth member for the tournament and how Bossun just randomly switched the names around in his panic.

What’s more: this also shows perfectly that the characters in this series aren’t stereotypes: by making everything fit so well at the beginning, this episode shuffles around the characters competences, and shows that everyone doesn’t just have one thing that they’re good at, but are in fact well fleshed out characters. At least, this goes for the main characters. This episode ended with the single biggest stereotype in the entire series’s turn about to start, so I have no idea why the writers chose her of all people to fill in aside from shock factor. She’s bound to lose (predictability yo!), but then again, I wonder more about she plans to do to make that match entertaining.

Overall, I am not really fond of Shounen jump adaptations, especially the ones that go on for ages, due to how incredibly long they take to get somewhere. The good parts tend to be overshadowed by the really long and draggy ones. Sket Dance though managed to be entertaining throughout its entire run so far. Its lack of plot doesn’t really matter so far: it’s really good at giving colour to its character, and it also keeps bringing back old characters, not just as cameos, but to flesh them out even more. And it’s really creative and funny in the process.

But yeah: the big question is whether this series will end up dragging, and when this will happen. There have been tons of once excellent shounen jump adaptations whose huge length became a huge turn-off: Gintama, Bleach, Naruto; even Dragonball Z would have been a pretty nice series if it ended right after the saiyan arc. Will Sket Dance avoid this and know when to quit like Level E, or will it pull a Bleach, jump the shark and refuse to end for the next couple of years?
Rating: ** (Excellent)

4 Responses

  1. gandalf8 says:

    Is this the Gachinko Vivage battle arc? It was one of the most hilarious arcs in the manga, I even read it a few times more just to enjoy it again. If I guess right, the next episode will probably show Saotome Roman vs Unyuu Mimori. If they adapt this one right, I guarantee you’ll be rolling on the floor laughing next episode psgels.

  2. psgels psgels says:

    gandalf: yup, next episode will show Roman in her match.

  3. Aegd says:

    I dont think shounen series need to suck just becauase the manga is long. Naruto and Bleach started to suck the minute they began throwing in fillers. They were fine until then. Naruto also got worse once they started dragging it out just because they started to catch up with the manga. If they would just stay true to the source material things would be so much better. This isnt only true for anime… just look how many movie adaptations hollywood has ruined…

  4. kaza says:

    one of the most hillarious GAME-arcs I’ve ever seen was on GINTAMA [4th year] … the arc [around 160th ep. I guess] is a game to see who’s the official fans of that pop-idol… it’s like 5 episodes of pure LAUGHING the entire time… [TAKATIN!!! LoL]

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  • Emma
    (Thursday, Jan 29. 2015 02:11 AM)
    Allegedly those saving owl statues are not in the original release of the game.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Jan 29. 2015 01:54 AM)
    Hyrule Warriors is getting horrendous feedback, and yeah the Dynasty Warrior schtick got old pretty fast; we just need someone to tell Koei to stop making them before they release the 22nd installment (fact, not exaggeration). I never really liked Majora’s Mask mainly due to the time limit. The only game I enjoyed that had playtime constrain was Breath of Fire V: Dragon Quarter.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Jan 29. 2015 01:47 AM)
    Depending on the quality of the mask, and considering the hefty Nintendo licensing and loyalty fees, it might be just around the right value. Be careful with screenshots tho- as they are generally doctored and might not represent the actual product. Trusty seller and good reviews are reassuring tho.
  • AidanAK47
    (Thursday, Jan 29. 2015 01:31 AM)
    On hyrule warriors, I haven’t played it but I played Dynasty warriors and found it so boring that never bothered to finish it.
  • AidanAK47
    (Thursday, Jan 29. 2015 01:26 AM)
    Truth be told I am not that gone on the game Majora’s mask. But I always loved the design of the mask itself. It’s damn beautiful. Screw it. I am going for it. It pretty much only means I need to wait for one extra paycheck more to get that laptop I want and considering how hard this thing is to get this is likely my best chance.
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Jan 29. 2015 01:26 AM)
    Out of curiosity have you played Hyrule warriors yet?
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Jan 29. 2015 01:22 AM)
    *awakening
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Jan 29. 2015 01:22 AM)
    After links awaking Majora’s mask is my favorite zelda game.
  • AidanAK47
    (Thursday, Jan 29. 2015 01:19 AM)
    …and you don’t know Majora’s mask?
  • AidanAK47
    (Thursday, Jan 29. 2015 01:19 AM)
    I have checked. This is pretty much the best I can get it. Damn Good quality, trust worthy seller. And my current laptops isn’t really bad off. It could last me for quite a while.

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