Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu 1 – Edutainment

From watching the PV (below), I was not impressed for some reason. I see a lot of girls, one magical girl, hear Batou (Akio Ohtsuka) and something that seem fairly stereotypical. I guess I was watch all these PVs at the same time without any subtitle (I didn’t use the one below). The addition of Pokemon/Yugioh style battles seemed childish and dumb at the time.

Then I watched the anime (MV-style highlights below)

I was not only pleasantly surprised but intrigued to a large degree!

For some reason, I missed the fun and the interest thoughts, not to mention the possible educational aids behind everything (I taught English in Japan and I learned to teach Mandarin Chinese) when I watched the PV. Personally, I have a prejudice against kids-oriented shows for some odd reason. Maybe because I just can’t stand the break every so often for a card battle or the similar sort. But here, with great voice acting, well-timed and used irony, and a monster summon that actually serves a purpose, it got me interested. Not to mention the social commentary about classism (Japan has one – it just isn’t outright rigid like India), which the show used sparingly and laced it with enough humor by not taking everything seriously. And it’s not a kids-oriented show.

The seemingly lazy and strategically incompetent not to mention self-appointed class rep serves a purpose as many probably know from classic shows – he’s the laissez faire leader in the governmental sense where he doesn’t impose anything. But he’s also a great motivator. What also sets him apart is that he apparently knows what’s going on behind the scenes and by using one bold strategy – it is not the best strategy but it works out – leads our hero and the superpowerful heroine to victory.

You know, the classic great leader leads misfits thing? This isn’t a standard harem comedy because we have more male leads and the girls are pretty strong with unique personalities. There isn’t any fan service in episode one, we see no panties (boo) and instead, we see an interesting twist on these card battle anime.

The edutainment application of this would be to implement similar system in a classroom, not to have absurd luxuries between people with better grades and people with less, but to design a challenge so that teams would have to come up with different strategies defeating their opponents to get better grades. They would have to research on their own and defeat each other in battles. Of course, having cute virtual characters definitely would help.

My bottomline? Fresh and ingenious, a good watch with enough baits and other little things to entice me to go on.

I wish we had this in high school!

Digital Boy’s Thoughts

Rabbit Poets’ Impression

Oishii Anime’s Thoughts

2 thoughts on “Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu 1 – Edutainment”

  1. “I wish we had this in high school!”

    me too haha i might have stuck around then XD

    this show holds promise to be a very good comedy anime :D

    1. @chii – well, schools can be helpful…if it were more innovative and didn’t treat everyone like sardines in a can.
      The battles in the show was OK but the concept is intriguing.

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