Kono Bijutsubu ni wa Mondai ga Aru! – 10

kono-bijutsubu-10-1There have certainly been some ebbs and flows to this anime season, as there always are – but Kono Bijutsubu ni wa Mondai ga Aru! has been rock steady from beginning to (almost) end.  I liked this show immensely when I saw the premiere (I actually liked it just from the previews, though that was a stab in the dark), I liked it when I had time to think about it and come back to it, and I like it now.  This is my sort of comedy – a perfect melange of cute, edgy, smart and silly.  And it’s gone ten episodes without really having an off week.

kono-bijutsubu-10-2Kono Bijutsubu is quite clever in the way it uses continuity without losing it’s episodic rhythm.  There are a lot of callbacks with this show (almost as if it’s testing whether you’ve been paying attention) and the characters grow and change in very believable ways.  We hearken back to the 4th episode here (prompted by the return of Moeka in the 9th episode) and find out that Subaru and Mizuki have been “outed” (his words) for helping Moeka when she was lost.  Neither of them found it especially comfortable to be paraded in front of their entire school (as most middle schoolers wouldn’t) for something so goody-goody, and Subaru especially is disinterested in the attention that comes their way after the fact.

kono-bijutsubu-10-3It’s Mizuki this poses the biggest problem for, however, as her homeroom teacher decides that she should cash in on her celebrity and run for student council – because it will reflect well on him.  He (barely) couches it in terms of a choice, but eventually abandons even the pretense and just submits her name without her permission (yeah, I’ve seen teachers do that kind of thing).  This chapter isn’t all that comedic, but I really like it as a character piece.  Mizuki is very believable here – she’s a good girl and for a middle schooler in Japan to stand up to a teacher…  But Subaru comes to her rescue after seeing that she ceded most of the credit for the Moeka rescue to him (which was the truth, admittedly) in the school newspaper.  Subaru shows some real balls here in storming into the teacher’s lounge and forcefully insisting Mizuki do her duty to the Bijutsubu, Seitoukai be damned.

kono-bijutsubu-10-4The middle chapter is definitely the meatiest here if you’re a fan of the romance plot (as Colette is).  Subaru and Col-chan (“Col-chan I understand”) have punted their midterms (he because he was following 30 anime series – are you listening, Samu?), and since he’ll be forced to quit the club and go to cram school if he flunks, Mizuki volunteers herself and the Kaichou to tutor the two of them.  Conveniently, her parents are out of town – though as you’d expect, that comes off sounding rather differently than Mizuki initially intended.

kono-bijutsubu-10-5Mizuki says she’s dragged Kaichou along because she “couldn’t handle” it on her own, but while she was referring to the tutoring we all know that’s not what she couldn’t handle.  Kaichou proves predictably useless as a tutor (he promptly falls asleep) but he is useful in moving the plot, because his monopolizing the couch forces Mizuki to let Subaru take a nap in her bed when he’s about to keel over.  This is great stuff, especially when it seems very much as if Mizuki won’t be able to control herself.  This girl is very much in love, plain and simple. and Colette is fully aware of the vibe in the air – but that doesn’t stop her from crawling under the covers and falling asleep in Subaru’s arms while Mizuki is sitting downstairs in the living room.

kono-bijutsubu-10-6Finally, baka Kaori is back for a brief turn in the spotlight.  She’s convinced that Imari is stealing Subaru from Mizuki and sets about finding evidence that Imari is a lowlife so as to drive a wedge between the two of them.  This sets off some fairly typical Kaori nonsense, this time involving a yo-yo camera with her name and class on it, but the upshot of the piece is that Imari is anything but the man-stealer Kaori is convinced she is.  She (over)bandages Kaori’s leg when she falls while tailing her.  She tells Kaori that she loves Mizuki.  She gives Kaori Baby Star when her tummy growls.  And she even giver Kaori her umbrella when it starts to rain (despite the sunshine).  I admit the list would be a short one, but Imari might just be my favorite anime chuunibyou of the past couple years – for a chuuni, she’s surprisingly well-adjusted.



  1. Imari is great!

    That is all!


    Okay … not quite all … I liked this episode, though while it wasn’t quite as “comedic” as other ones I liked the “warm fuzzies” it gave off – through all three parts too.

  2. s

    yea; now i have found two characters that make this show watchable for me (mizuki and imari). It also helps that they are voiced by two talented voice actresses. If ari ozawa and nao touyama have anything in common, it’s how good they are at reflecting who their characters are by the way they deliver their lines (this is also why i like seiyuus like haruka tomatsu and itou kanae because they too are really good at this). Like i could seriously listen to a few of mizuki’s line this episode and i could write you a paper explaining who she is as a character because of how well ozawa sells mizuki’s apprehensiveness, her doubts, her joys, etc. through just casual dialogue. You dont need to be on the level of an academy award voice actress or whatnot to be able to execute or understand how to voice act in a way that conveys personality and humanizes the character for the audience. Sadly, this is a trait i dont see in quite a bit of seiyuu so it’s always a treat when i hear voice actors (japanese or english) who can do this.

  3. Funny, my favorite characters are probably Colette and Subaru, but there are no swings and misses in this cast for me.

  4. s

    colette is shy from being third on my list; Uesaka gets her cute just right but it’s something about how human mizuki feels to me that trumps the rest…..as for subaru…booooooo XD

  5. Yeah, I don’t get that at all TBH. He’s a good egg. To me Subaru is to otaku boys what Imari is to Chuuni girls.

  6. s

    You know why im not a fan of subaru? it’s cuz my last one broke down on me……all corny jokes aside, it’s not that i dislike him more than it is that his character doesnt do anything for me. He’s a blank canvas (pun unintended) who, like you said is representative of otaku boys…that’s it. There’s nothing inventive in the execution of his character, he certainly isnt what i would consider one of the funny members of the cast, and kinda like darkness was in konosuba, most of his shtick is centered around one thing aka the fact that he looooooovesss his waifu’s…yaaaaaayyyy so exciting. Every now and then he gives off slight hints that he is more aware of the situations around him than he lets on but it never strengthens his character in any kind of significant or minute way because he just goes back to being uninteresting to watch on screen. He is the most stagnant of the cast without the exuberant personality of colette or imari or the humanizing and lovable qualities of mizuki to excuse the fact that he’s so stagnant. Heck, this is also kind of the reason why i dont care much for the president either.

    You know why imari works better than subaru, because the writing does a better job of portraying the different facets of imari’s character in a way that she doesn come off as a blank canvas who only embodies her trope. Yea she’s a chuuni girl being played relatively straight, but the narrative never overplays her chuunibyou antics; instead the narrative uses it to tell us bits and pieces of who imari is. Imari is kind of lonely but has the strength of character to always wear a smile on her face, treat others kindly, and most importantly, to not be shameful of who she is. Imari is shown to be insightful, a bit playful but never malicious, athletic, understanding of people, . She overdoes things a bit but it’s always full of heart; and although she is a bit of an airheaded, she is socially aware enough to understand when something looks embarrassing so as to not make her a completely unbelievable character. However, we see Imari alone a lot, which adds an extra element to her character. Basically, Imari is executed with more gusto, passion, and the narrative presents her in a way that makes her a joy to watch on screen. Subaru is the opposite for me. Yea he’s a good egg, but if i had to think of people who could carry the show if the other cast members were absent, it sure as hell wouldnt be him. and that’s a testament to how lacking of a character he is as well lack of onscreen presence….but that’s just my take on it. I like watching engaging characters (i dont mean 3 dimensional characters; 1 dimensional well fleshed out characters can be just as engaging) and subaru barely ticks any of those things on my list that i look for in that regard

  7. Yup, agree to disagree time on this one.

  8. s

    hahaha, fair enough.

  9. “…there are no swings and misses in this cast for me.”

    To be honest this is my experience too. The adaptation is very nicely, solidly and consistently well done. Even the characters who do not “jump out and grab you” (whoever that may be for each person) do seem to gradually grow on one and slowly become endearing as you get to know them – at least that was my experience.

    Heck even the OP is beginning to grow on me, which was originally not the case – originally the OP felt pretty generic and “oh well” to me. The ED, though, still has not quite clicked with me, for whatever reason.

  10. I’ve loved the OP from the first – I think it’s a perfect fit for the mood of the show. I’m not as crazy about the ED song, though it’s interesting – and the ED animation is quite inventive.

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