Mob Psycho 100 – Episodes 1-12 Review

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“Listen. Just because you have psychic powers doesn’t make you any less human. It’s the same as people who are fast, people who are book smart, and people with strong body odor. Psychic powers are just another characteristic. You must embrace that as part of yourself and continue to live positively. The truth behind one’s charm is kindness. Become a good person. That is all.”

–Arakata Reigen to Shigeo (Mob) Kageyama

 

mobpsycho

Summary:

Shigeo Kageyama is an average middle school boy, ironically nicknamed Mob (モブ Mobu) (meaning “background character”) for lacking a sense of presence. Although he looks like an inconspicuous person, he is in fact a powerful esper. As he grows older, Mob realizes that his psychic powers are strengthening and becoming more dangerous. To avoid his power getting out of control, he constantly lives a life under an emotional shackle. Mob wants to live a normal life just like the others, but a barrage of trouble keeps coming after him. With the suppressed emotions growing inside Mob incrementally, his power threatens to break through its limits when he reaches 100%.

 

Review: 12733-200 12733-200 12733-200 12733-200 12733-200 / 5

Holy Moly. Where do I even start with this masterpiece? Mob Psycho 100 is on par with all of the great shonen animes out there: One Punch ManAttack on Titan, and Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood. That is honestly the highest compliment I can give it and it is deserved in every aspect.  It is authentic to the genre: chopped full with action, battle-scenes, drama and humor.

The plot is interesting and easy to follow. It forces us to question the nature of human beings, how we navigate moral actions, and the binary opposition perspective and the discrimination which, like a loyal dog, obediently follows it. It is no hyperbole for me to say this series was perfectly paced. There is no filler here; no wasted moments. The show’s intensity is balanced by staccato bursts of humor making it palatable while still retaining its edge.

The characters are realistic and true to their dispositions, many feature adequate growth for the time covered in the arc. Hanazawa’s development was particularly pleasing to watch, and many times he reminded me of Takumi Aldini from Food Wars. The relationship he shares with Mob is a balanced view of both rival and friend, and it was heartwarming to see it portrayed in an accurate manner.

 

As a Yuri on Ice!!! fan, I was happy to see it won every award it was nominated for in the 2016 Crunchyroll awards. However, after now watching Mob Psycho 100, I completely agree with the argument many MP100 fans had, and that this series is far better deserving of the title. I mean just look:

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It’s like this for the whole show. I paused multiple times, and I can say with absolute certainty that the animators didn’t cut corners.  The style itself refuses to bend to the hot-guy-only-protagonist trope that befalls much of the genre, and for that it earns respect from me.

I can only mention two criticisms in this anime. The first, is that it was difficult to binge, especially in the beginning. Its intensity from episodes 1 to 12 was astounding–I would say on par to Attack on Titan–and often times I would finish an episode and think: that’s it. I’m done for the night.  There was so much to chew on with the characters, the plot, the setting and themes; there was so much to digest that I couldn’t binge… if I did, I’d probably suffer from the vomiting equivalent for anime.

The second and far larger fault is episode 12, the final episode in the season, wherein Mob subconsciously transfers all of his power to Reigen, his Master. I understand we’re operating in a psychic realm with magical realism, but that’s a bit of a stretch. The show has, up until this point, done an excellent job with believability. Its realism isn’t short-changed anywhere except for in this instance. This resolution is at best a cop-out.  As a watcher, I would have been more satisfied if Reigen had died, and Mob was forced to develop as a character. His lack of growth was concerning, but I believe it will be rectified next season.

Ultimately, this show is a much watch. I don’t give fives very often, but this series definitely makes the cut and is worth the hype.

What did you guys think? Did you love it as much as I did, or do you have more criticism? Let me know in the comments below!

 

Watch on, Annieme-niacs!

~Annie

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