“Simply put, we need to go lewder. Miniskirts! Swimsuits! Low-Angle Shots! You need to put in as many of those as you can without breaking the law.”
-Amagi Brilliant Park, Episode 13
Another season, another project by KyoAni is unfolded to the masses. Though it seems as though KyoAni’s latest attempt at trying to appeal to the anime demographic that loves cute and sexy girls is now back in full fashion. I’d think of Amagi Brilliant Park as their apology to all the people who were whining about the “gayness” that KyoAni was ostracizing with their recent hit, “Free!”. Hey, they can make whatever they please and we can judge whether it’s worthy of being timeless in their long successful history. In which case Amagi Brilliant Park will only be seen as just another Kyoukai no Kanata; a filler show.
Whereas Kyoukai no Kanata fell vastly short to even be called a memorable show, a filler show at that, Amagi Brilliant Park is at least commendable to be called a filler show. In the strictest sense, what made me make this distinction while watching this show was how appropriately tame it is with how it portrays the story and setting. Everything is lighthearted, for the most part, and easy for the mind to sit back and relax in pure escapism. As with every anime comedy, there are cute girls in it. KyoAni certainly hasn’t failed on giving us quality girls as opposed to other aspects to an anime.
All of the main characters are fueled by their appearances and personalities that spark up a great deal of charm to their archetypes. Latifa is typically the girly girl part of the cast that is always optimistic and smiling so we can view her innocence and glamour. Not necessarily the best character considering her backstory is quite melodramatic in the most apathetic way possible, but nothing bad either. However, there is Isuzu. Quite possibly the one saving grace to the show in her hilarious stoic demeanor. Hilarious in the sense that when she breaks character and starts showing emotion, you have no choice but to squeal with ultimate delight. Plus, you can’t be a true man if you refuse her offer to paizuri you.
Besides our two main girls, our male protagonist, Seiya Kanie, isn’t really anything special. He doesn’t offer any nuanced grandeur to make him stand out like any other memorable KyoAni protagonists before him. But the real crux of the cast are the supporting cast, and there are a lot of them. The problem with this is how so little of the supporting cast barely have anything to make them seem unique other than just being weird mascot characters that are barely significant in any way. Sure, some of them, particularly Moffle and Tiramie, have some moments that are funny, but its a quick little comedic pick me up before it’s later tossed away by another funny moment.
What does make Amagi Brilliant Park special amongst other of KyoAni’s projects is just how vibrant and colorful they’ve made their art and animation. Earlier in KyoAni’s career, they’ve tried to make their characters seem more realistic despite just relying on the moe-blob formula. They’re still present in here, but what makes this refreshing is how they implement the cartoonish aesthetic to the different characters. Besides our human characters, it’s nice to see KyoAni make these adorable animal mascots and give some spark of creativity to how they interact with their bodies and to each other.
In closing….oh wait, I forgot about story. Wait, honestly, what story is there to critique? It’s almost 2nd nature to Amagi Brilliant Park. All there is to service a plot is the characters trying to keep their amusement park from closing down. But the only problem is that they fail to even make that an issue that I should care about since all the fanservice and cute characters drown it out like white noise. Its one of those situations where the show falls flat on story but, then again, that really isn’t the whole point and even the show itself makes this clear as day. When you first show a girl dressed up as a pirate girl in a bikini, you’re only response is to clap slowly in amusement and go, “Yeah okay, I’ll let this be passable in any measure.”
That’s how Amagi Brilliant Park can be described into one word: passable. Just a bit above passable to where it can be labeled decent in the critical spectrum. As far as KyoAni shows, to which I’ve become not fond of even when they were in their “golden age”, it will nonetheless entertain with enjoyable comedy to splendor about. Sure it’s another show centered around cute girls, but when you see the sight of Isuzu in a cheerleader bikini outfit, it’s a sight that is more than just moe; it’s life.