Why have a slice when you can have the whole pie?
My lovelies, I’ve had a couple requests (FYI, I love requests. Please make them.): the first being some top picks per genre lists, and the second being some more opinion pieces, since the one on sports anime went over well.
Today, we’re tackling Slice of Life shows! This is one of my favorite genres for relaxing and having a good laugh. It’s the closest thing I watch to reality TV. Slice of Life refers to seemingly mundane or average experiences: working in a book shop, going to school or playing a sport. It basically serves as “a day in the life” snapshot. Within any genre, there are many subgenres and overlapping. SoL is no exception–it includes drama and comedy, romance and tragedy, factoids and fun. Personally, my favorite ones are the comedies, ones without sports because I’ll probably do a whole separate post about those. I should probably mention all of the shows below received 4/5 marks on the Anniemeter. They’re pretty equal, so this ranking list is pretty fluid.
1. Kiss Him, Not Me!
Kiss Him, Not Me (Watashi ga Motete Dōsunda) follows Kae Serinuma is a fujoshi, a female manga and anime geek who loves reading yaoi (boys love) material and imagining men together in romantic relationships, both fictional and real. When one of her favorite anime characters is killed off, Kae is so shocked that she locks herself in her room for a whole week. When she eventually comes out, she discovers that she has lost a lot of weight. She becomes a beautiful girl that catches the eye of four boys at her school: Yūsuke Igarashi, Nozomu Nanashima, Hayato Shinomiya, and Asuma Mutsumi. Despite learning about Kae’s bizarre tendencies, the four boys, along with another fujoshi girl named Shima Nishina, all fall for Kae and begin competing with each other for her affection, much to Kae’s frustration as she wants them to fall in love with each other.
My current top pic for the genre. I can’t remember the last time I laughed so hard at an anime.
Categories: Shojo, Romance, Comedy, Harem
2. Poco’s Udon World
Poco’s Udon World (Udon no Kuni no Kin’iro Kemari) revolves around the complicated but normal life of Souta Tawara, a young web designer from Tokyo who decides to return to his hometown in Kagawa following the death of his father and to take a break from the city. Upon his return, he sadly learns that the family restaurant had gone out of business during his absence; while reminiscing about his childhood, Souta walks inside the closed down restaurant and discovers a blonde haired little boy wearing rags sleeping inside a cooking pot. Then, Souta realizes that this child is a shape shifting tanuki that has been inhabiting Kagawa for many years. Thinking that the boy has been living a lonely life, he decides to adopt him and name him “Poco”. Each episode follows the heartwarming relationship between Souta and Poco, and through the time they spend together, Souta recalls his own past, the place he left behind for the city, and the relationship he had with his father.
Kawaii-factor incoming! This series is adorable, and I think I have a thing for “lost man becomes father-figure for adorable cutie”, seeing as 3/7 on this list follow this trope.
Categories: Comedy, Seinen
3. Recovery of an MMO Junkie
Recovery of an MMO Junkie (Netojū no Susume) follows Moriko Morioka is a 30-year-old successful career woman who decides to quit her taxing corporate job and become an elite NEET and find a more fulfilling life. She joins an online MMORPG Fruits de Mer and creates a male character named Hayashi as her avatar. In the game, Hayashi meets another character Lily, a high-level player who helps him learn the game. Hayashi and Lily becomes close friends and he joins her guild, @HomeParty. Meanwhile, in the real world, Moriko has a chance encounter with a handsome elite company employee, Yuta Sakurai, who may have ties with her online life.
I love video games. I love anime. I love romance. This one has all three. I’d totally quit my job and just game all day if I could. Let me live vicariously through you, Moriko!
Categories: Shojo, Romance, Comedy
4. Sweetness and Lightning
Sweetness and Lightning (Amaama to Inazuma) follows Kōhei Inuzuka, a teacher who has been raising his daughter, Tsumugi, by himself following the death of his wife. Having mostly bought ready-made meals for his daughter since, Kōhei’s encounter with one of his students, Kotori Iida, leads him to take up cooking in order to provide proper meals for Tsumugi.
#LetTsumugiEat2018. This show is so good. Too pure for this world.
Categories: Sienen, Comedy
5. Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid
Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid (Kobayashi-san Chi no Meidoragon) follows Kobayashi, a typical office worker. One day, she is greeted by a large dragon right outside her front door. The dragon immediately transforms into a human girl in a maid outfit, and introduces herself as Tohru. It turns out that during a drunken excursion into the mountains the night before, Kobayashi had encountered the dragon, who claims to have come from another world. Subsequently, Kobayashi had removed a holy sword from Tohru’s back, earning her gratitude. With Tohru having no place to stay, Kobayashi offers to let the dragon stay at her home and become her personal maid, to which she agrees. As Kobayashi has forgotten her drunken offering, she is initially reluctant to allow the dragon into her home despite her previous promise, but a mix of guilt and the usefulness of Tohru’s dragon abilities convinces Kobayashi to accept her. Despite being efficient at housework, Tohru’s unorthodox methods of housekeeping often end up scaring Kobayashi and bringing more trouble than help. Additionally, Tohru’s presence attracts other dragons, gods, and mythical beings to her new home.
A slice of life about dragons. Mic Drop.
Categories: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Comedy, Romance (?: a little bit of romance. a smidgen.)
Barakamon follows Seishū Handa, a young professional calligrapher. When the elderly curator of an exhibition criticizes his calligraphy for being too unoriginal (“like a textbook”), Seishū gets angry and punches him. Because of this, his father sends him off for a retreat on Gotō Island, near Kyūshū. There, he meets the colorful villagers, interacts with them, and begins to find his own style. The title of the series means “energetic/cheeful one” in the local provincial Gotō Islands’ dialect. The first episode is also called “Barakakodon/ばらかこどん” which means “energetic/cheeful kid”, which refers to Naru Kotoishi, a very hyperactive kid that comes into Handa’s life.
And the Holy Trinity is complete. Salty calligraphy dad basically adopts small bug-loving girl. My heart. Send help.
7. Blend S
Blend S (ブレンド・S Burendo Esu) follows Maika Sakuranomiya, a high school girl who has trouble finding a part-time job because of how scary she looks when smiling. However, she is scouted one day by an Italian man who is also the manager of Stile, a café where its waitresses are given unique traits such as tsundere and younger sister. Maika is given a sadist trait because of her looks and has to adopt a dominant and cruel persona when servicing customers, particularly masochist ones.
Move over, maid cafes; give me personality cafes! Also give me the little blossoming romances of the work place.
Categories: Shojo, Romance, Comedy
That’s all for this post! Maybe I’ll do more slice of life picks, branching out to some different subgenres. What are your picks? Let me know in the comments below!
Watch on, Annieme-niac!