Spice and Wolf’s lack of a third season has been hurting many anime fans for some time. Everyone wants it to happen, but with every passing day it gets less and less likely. So it was only a matter of time before someone else stepped in to try and fill that gap, or at least as best they could. Maoyuu Maou Yuusha is the product of that, a story written by an impatient 2ch user and Spice and Wolf fan, designed to satiate the cravings of others like him as much as possible. In it we have a fairly reserved male with his enigmatic supernatural female companion (who’s body is a point of note in some regard), as they go around doing economics and stuff in a medieval European-esque fantasy setting. This adaptation even sees the two franchises sharing their two leading voice talents! It is influenced by Spice and Wolf to say the least.
It says something that even something as obviously derivative as this is still very much a breath of fresh air in the current anime landscape, but that’s a discussion for another time. Maoyuu Maou Yuusha is about economics and politics and magic and demons and shit. It’s pretty alright.
I know we shouldn’t be demonizing economists, buuut…
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Nonsensical and non-sequitur based humour is incredibly difficult to pull off. Even Monty Python, the gold standard for this kind of comedy, could be incredibly hit-and-miss. But when something succeeds at it, the results can be hilarious in a surreal, subversive way; when they fail, it can end up resembling the worst kind of lolrandumb output of an internet-addled teenager.
Ai Mai Mi is, by and large, the latter.
Ostensibly, Ai Mai Mi is a series of 3 minute shorts about four girls in an after-school manga club – Ai, Mai, Mi and Ponoka – as they deal with all manner of weirdness in their day-to-day life. What we actually get is a string of incoherent and entirely disconnected skits that rely on their absurdity to get laughs instead of any actual, y’know, jokes. There’s no build up, no payoff, no characterization, no intelligence, nothing that could really be construed as comedy.
Not to say it’s entirely without merit or unwatchable – there’s a certain amount of amusement to be gleamed from its inherent strangeness, and there’s definitely a couple of genuinely hilarious moments – it’s just that Ai Mai Mi is more mildly confusing than actually funny.
Nice ED though.
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