Early Impressions: Houkago Teibou Nisshi

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However I may feel about this anime currently, there won’t be much continuation anytime soon. The big, bad COVID has prevented this series from continuing to air, and those enamored with fish, girls, and a combination of two will have to wait an undisclosed amount of time for episode four.

There’s a certain stigma about shows that fit into the “Cute Girls Doing Cute Things” (CGDCT) subgenre. Generally don’t have a continuing narrative, the characters fit into specific archetypes, and while not always the case, it involves them participating in an oddball club type. Of course, they may not take the club’s topic all that seriously, and instead goof off for one or two cours, but nevertheless. I’ve seen my fair share of these series, some being good (K-ON!), some being bad (Urara Meirochou). And despite my cynical inclinations begging me to watch something with more impact, I tend to like relaxing, semi-boring titles with nice visuals every so often. I blame my residual tolerance built via indulging in ASMR.

And Houkago Teibou Nisshi fits the bill exactly: a relaxing, semi-boring anime with nice visuals.

houkago teibou nisshi 2
Her very own rod.

To get a little meta for a bit, I actually struggled to think of a series that fit both the CGDCT subgenre and the “some being bad” adjective above. After scrolling through fan-made lists online of CGDCT compilations, I’ve come to realize that, despite not being particularly fond of them, I don’t generally hate them. Things like K-ON!Lucky StarNon Non BiyoriLove Lab, etc., have varying degrees of fondness from me, but very few get scores lower than a 5/10. Almost as if they exist in their own plane of existence and it’s hard to discredit them for doing something that is inherent to their intentions. It’s cute girls doing cute things. Does it succeed at being cute? Hard not to. It’s just not always good at anything else.

And again, Houkago Teibou Nisshi fits the formula perfectly: cute, indeed, just not particularly great in any other capacity.

One thing I will both chastise and commend is the only-occasional and subtle use of sexual fan service. Some CGDCT anime have a tendency to hint at subjects pertaining to characters’ sexuality, pervertedness, and things within that vein. This show, through three episodes, teeters that line between PG and PG-13, whereas some sexually-stimulating events occur, though aren’t explicitly showcased. The first episode has an octopus almost find its way up the female lead’s skirt (because of course), yet no panty is shot. The second episode has said female lead mess up her casting (this series is about fishing) and pulling up another character’s skirt—again, the panty is not shot. Almost a form of imaginative sexual fan service that I don’t generally see. It appears the staff is trying to keep this both family friendly and titillating.

houkago teibou nisshi 1
Tsurugi has an octopus on her leg.

Otherwise, it’s about fishing. Does fishing sound fun? I can tell you from experience that fishing games can be fun and impactful, though watching girls go over extensive tutorials is another beast altogether. In terms of general atmosphere, it feels more peaceful and serene, akin to Non Non Biyori, while the character interactions remind me of Comic Girls, which has its merits. Should it continue this course, I’d give it a slim chance of being dropped, though I also watched this with Animal Crossing playing in front of me, and it managed to distract me more than a couple times.

For me, it’s passable entertainment. Comedy’s pretty stiff, the over-elaborative efforts can be snooze-worthy, and it’s as aimless as slice-of-life normally are. Yet it has that proven effectiveness that CGDCT has with silly charm, and the environments/characters designs are pleasant. Maybe that shouldn’t be enough, but it is for me. I’m not too picky about it.

Thank you for your time. Have a great day.

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