Kyoukai no Rinne – 41

One person’s disasters are an anime viewer’s good fortune.

Kyoukai no Rinne - 41 -1The seven people watching this series know how lucky we are, because for sheer, straight-up hilarity there isn’t much out there that can do with Kyoukai no Rinne has done for 41 episodes.  No question, seeing an old-timer like Rumiko – somebody for whom the anime/manga industry is now deeply ingrained in their DNA – so ruthlessly satirize it is a treat.  But there can be no question that the material in Rinne just packs more punch in anime form, plain and simple, and the cast here is beyond reproach.  It’s a joy to watch.

Kyoukai no Rinne - 41 -2This was definitely one of my favorite episodes of the series, loaded front-to-back with inspired lunacy.  Rinne has very deep pockets when it comes to comic characters, and this time around it pulls out Ageha for the first time in a while.  Ageha is the consummate aho in every sense – she truly is a gloriously idiotic person, a God-tier baka.  So it was no surprise when Renge’s flashback to their elementary-school days revealed that Ageha was a series of disasters even then.

Kyoukai no Rinne - 41 -3As it happens, Ageha and Renge make a very good comedy team, as they’re so opposite in every respect.  This ep finds Ageha buying a “break-up kit” from a street soothsayer (hey, she can afford it), which she intends to use to break up Rinne and Mamiya Sakura.  But Renge sees this as an opportunity for payback, knowing that disaster befalls the user if they curse the wrong couple.  Things start out “innocently” enough, with Ageha setting Rinne-kun on fire in the classroom.  But as soon as Ageha gets involved the real fireworks start.

Where do I begin to list the comic gems that billow forth from this setup?

Kyoukai no Rinne - 41 -4One of the things I love about Kyoukai no Rinne is that it doesn’t sugarcoat its antagonists – even the ones who aren’t truly evil can be utter assholes.  Renge is just a really, really awful person – there’s no soft and cuddly side to her.  And Ageha is unrepentantly stupid and incredibly shallow.  These two absolutely deserve each other, and it’s glorious to watch them go at it.

Kyoukai no Rinne - 41 -5Despite all that, though, maybe my favorite part of the episode didn’t even involve the main plot.  That would be the intermission cut-in “Tama-net”, which featured Obaa-san Tama and her black cat hawking a series of romance aids.  First off, Tama naturally casts herself as a high school girl in these vignettes, which is perfect.  But all the crap she’s selling is taken directly from manga and anime romance cliches – a piece of toast with a bite out of it, a cute puppy for guys to parade in front of girls, and best of all the “Guuguu Cushion” – which simulates the noise of a boy’s growly stomach so he can get his crush to give him her home ec cookies.

Kyoukai no Rinne - 41 -6This little interlude is comedy perfection – so smart, so viciously on-point, so flawlessly executed.  And that fact that it happens to be sandwiched inside a truly great episode is the icing on the cake.  It truly is a shame that Kyoukai no Rinne languishes in the least-trafficked corners of the anime schedule, but that doesn’t diminish its accomplishments one little bit.

 

 

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7 comments

  1. D

    The ‘Tama-Net’ part was hilarious with its clinical dissecting of anime cliches. There’s really nothing else out there like this show, more’s the pity.

  2. b

    I think my favorite part of the episode was when Ageha swung that cursed sword at Renge’s head, and Renge yelled at her for not using it properly. (Ageha’s approach is more effective than any flimsy curse, anyway.)

    Also, I’ve noticed that all of the grudges everyone has toward each other in this show come from only two source: some petty crap that happened in elementary school, or Rinne’s dad.

  3. B

    I love that Renge is just purely out for revenge. She’s not interested in any of the guys. In fact, the only thing she has been show to want is Mamiya Sakura’s friendship. That allows her comedy to work on a whole different level and makes the fact that she’s going after Rinne purely to attack Ageha all the juicier. lol

  4. K

    I don’t understand your first sentence: “The seven people watching this series know how lucky we are.”

    Do you mean that this serie isn’t popular?

  5. N

    Saying that it isn’t popular is an understatement unfortunately 🙁 Very few people in the west watch it and it doesn’t look to be making much profit in Japan either. Be good and thank the producers for not only giving us a sequel, but a nicely made 2-cour sequel!

  6. I hope that some kind of miracle happens and they announce a 3rd season for 2017. Yes, I know I’m setting myself for disappointment, but a man can dream.

  7. G

    I find this show perfect when I’m home with a packed lunch – just light enough but not something you need to pay attention too seriously. I will need a s3 as well, this show is too consistent not to like.

    I also agree that Tama-net segment the most hilarious and ingenious. I would never imaginr that this show would take an inspired home shopping gimmick to market anime cliches so brazenly; in fact, isn’t that the same with anime viewers and many current anime, when put in perspective.

    I also like how the anime leads us to our OTP – notice when the Break Up Scissors kami threaten to cut off their romantic ties, Tsubasa only cared about his relationship with Sakura, while Rokudou cared about Mamiya’s safety. Goes to show that Tsubasa is more caught up with the potential relationship itself, rather than really being in love with Sakura.

    Renge is indeed a welcome addition to the cast full of bakas. And her sassy “You win.” catches me every time. A smart person does not engage in a losing fight, not against bimbou-ness. Anyway, I can’t wait for you guys to watch episode 42, it’s pretty hilarious as well.

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