What They Say:
Yabasawa-san really wants a certain part for her avatar, and asks the Sket-dan to join a game tournament put on by a cellphone game site. The Sket-dan isn’t particularly enthused about the prospect, but when they find out that the Student Council will also be participating…
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Sometimes just competition with certain people is enough to inspire others to join in and that’s certainly the case when it comes to the Sket Club. They’re approached by Yabasawa about helping her win a virtual game that’s played on cellphones where the prize is now a particular mouth for her avatar that she desperately wants. The club can’t exactly get enthused about this, in fact they’re practically mocking her, but the discovery that the student council will be participating is what gets Bossun and Himeko supremely enthused for getting involved themselves. Not that some of them want to participate, but knowing that the Sket Club will be involved is the added incentive on their part to play for all they’re worth.
Of course, nothing here is done small as the tournament takes place in a large scale stadium with thousands upon thousands of spectators watching what will happen. Amusingly, they skimp out on all the preliminary rounds by having them dealt with off camera so we can just race to the finals themselves. The games that they have to deal with all showcased as cell phone game screens which is cute, but the Sket Club has a real challenge ahead of them as the person who initiated all of this, Yabasawa, has fled due to problems at home she has to deal with. That puts the team in disarray as they have to deal with things like dating sim game rounds, cooking rounds and so forth. Each member has their own set of skills so they can manage it, though the student council themselves certainly has an array of skills of their own.
The competitions do get raced through before the finals, and once they get going in the finals the show has a good bit of fun with it in how they’re analyzed by the judges and the shock of others, such as Bossun when Himeko does the cooking challenge and aces it in such a way that he never expected. The cooking challenge has a lot of fun to it as it unfolds but it goes on longer than you’d expect. With both sides getting to show their results and the reactions of the crowd and others, it loses some of its fast paced atmosphere and you realize that it’s going to spill into another episode as well. With only two of the competitions for the finals faced here out of the five, and with the instigator of it all having fled, it’s an awkward situation for only a moment though since Bossun and the others aren’t really playing for Yabasawa but rather to take down the student council.
With Sket Dance, I continue to find that the show works best with the half length stories rather than the full episode length ones. With this one going for a two part storyline, it’s not exactly winning me over here, but it does have its moments. It’s poking certain things in the eye when it comes to the tournaments and shows that revolve around it, but those have been poked at repeatedly for so long that there’s little sting to it. What we do get here has its cute moments to be sure and there’s something to be said for watching Himeko go all intense for a cooking competition while the others look for a replacement to bring in so they can finish out the finals. I’m not sure this story can support a whole episode, never mind two, so the jury is still out on it. There’s a number of things to like here but it’s strangely spread out in a way that feels like too much too quick as it skips ahead and then slows down.
Simulcast By: Crunchyroll
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70″ LCoS 1080P HDTV, Dell 10.1 Netbook via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.