A man is miserable. Despite all his dreams of a “Rose-Colored Campus Life” filled with raven-haired maidens who dote on him, his social life is going nowhere. He has no girlfriend, his only good friend keeps getting him into trouble, and the circle he joined brings him no joy. So he tries again, and again, reliving his first two years of college life ad nauseum, making different decisions each time, having no recollection that he’s already done this all before. Will the man ever be satisfied with how his life turns out?
Nishi has been in love with Myon since he was 9 years old. They both had feelings for each other, but due to Nishi's cowardice their relationship never became more than friendship. Now, in the present, Nishi is 20 years old and aims to be a great manga artist; but he still loves Myon. After years of being apart they meet again, but she tells him that she's thinking of marrying her boyfriend. Nishi is still a coward so he accepts it and wishes her luck. While they're talking at her older sister's restaurant a pair of yakuza walk in looking for their father. One of the yakuza starts harassing Myon and out of anger Nishi chooses to finally take a stand -- but he is shot and dies. Now, in limbo, he chooses to live again; but will he really live any differently than before?
Each of these shows focus around the main character getting a second (or more) chance at life, trying to show them what they could have been. Also, each of the series are extremely weird, with unique story telling and artstyles throughout.
Mind Game is rather more ridiculous than Tatami Galaxy, and doesn't have as good a message, but they both are about sort of cowardly guys that haven't lived their lives up to their expectations, and get another chance (or thousand) to fix things up until they're satisfied.
Both come complete with Masaaki Yuasa's unique directing, art style, and general whimsy.
It sucks to be twenty and being unable to consummate a relationship with a girl, doesn't it? And how about getting a second chance after you've screwed up horribly, and maybe a lot of weirdness along the way, a loopy anime from Masaaki Yuasa all round? I can't recommend these two any more strongly for one another - if you liked one, put the other in your must-watch pile.
Masaaki Yuasa's Mind Game and Tatami Galaxy target the twenty-something male going through a premature mid-life crisis in which life and, above all, love seem to have left him out in the cold. As they struggle to overcome their insecurities, they enjoy wild adventures captured in weirdly wonderful animation. Trust me, if you liked one of these funky, off-beat, and powerfully life-affirming shows, you'll adore the other.
These two are really great recs for each other. Both from the genius of Maasaki Yuasa the similarities in the themes and characters feel obvious from the start. Two main characters struggling on a journey of self-discovery - I'm sure I'll just make it sound tacky, but they are both wonderfully constructed and the end message is delivered in a satisfying way. If you don't watch one and feel the desire for improvement resound in your own life then something is wrong with you or, on the contrary, unlike our protagonists you're doing everything right :p Both are hard to look away from as they are visually mesmerising and have a good mix of comedy and drama.
Both Tatami Galaxy and Mind Game are about 20 something year old guys that have squandered their youth through inaction. In both anime the protagonists get a second shot. Tatami Galaxy is easier to follow and has a clear ending. Mind Game is a bit fragmented. Nevertheless I recommend them both.
Tatsuhiro Sato is a university dropout and a "hikikomori" – a person suffering from social withdrawal. To Sato’s dismay, his self-imposed exile from the world is rudely interrupted when a mysterious girl knocks on his door. She has charged herself with the task of curing Sato of his hikikimori ways! Now, as new problems ranging from hentai games to internet suicide spring up, can Sato manage to overcome his hermit-like ways, or will the imaginary N.H.K conspiracy force him to remain a hikikomori forever?
Tatami Galaxy and Welcome to the NHK! are dark comedies about college-aged men that have wasted their lives and are now trying, largely unsuccessfully, to get their lives back in order and restore their happiness. They do this with the assistance of an equally socially-unfit best friend and a girl who is also a bit odd. Tatami Galaxy is much more arthouse, but both feature wacky-but-still-in-the-realm-of-believable (well... sort of)scenarios and characters.
Each of these series involve college age guys that are trying to find themselves and go through a large amount of groups, friends, clubs, etc. in order to do so. NHK! is less paranormaly/strange, for the most part, though.
I identify far too much with the protagonists of these series - far more, I'm sure, then is healthy. These self-absorbed lonely college screw-ups trapped in their own private hells; with plenty of laughs and drama and weirdness (far more so in Tatami Galaxy's case) along the way. If you're willing to watch a NHK that's far, far stranger and 'arty', give Tatami a whirl... and if you want a similar angst to Tatami that has more of a dramatic arc, then NHK may just be the thing for you.
Tragically funny and affecting, both Welcome to the NHK and Tatami Galaxy manage to capture the self-destructively gauche young male who struggles to fit in with society for one reason or another. More importantly, both manage to represent the humour in their misadventures while not completely sidelining the human tragedy that underlies it all. One show reminded me powerfully of the other and I think fans of one will find a lot of enjoyment in the other.
Koyomi Araragi is an aloof boy who holds a strange, supernatural secret which inadvertently leads him to others with similar stories. Gods, spirits and afflictions can be pesky things, taking important memories or causing unusual tendencies – a fact that Koyomi and others are unfortunately aware of. Using the help of an eccentric homeless man, Koyomi is able to help new friends he meets along the way with their own paranormal conundrums…
Bakemonogatari and Tatami Galaxy are two series that both rely on clever characters, unique animation, and a heavy amount of witty dialog. If you enjoyed one, there is a good chance you'll have fun watching the other.
Bakemonogatari features as Yojouhan Shinwa Taikei a theme of love, involved in the comic choices of the principal character. As Bakemonogatari goes on, the character will stumble upon choices he has to make in order to secure the relationship with his love. The inner thoughts of the characters really push forward the ridiculous of the situations in both anime. Yojouhan Shinwa Taikei strives to be more on the common daily life, Bakemonogatari, however, has more to do with the supernatural and the fantastic.
Meet the bizarre and twisted psychiatric doctor Ichirou Irabu. Occasionally taking the form of a lime green bear, a young man or even a small child, this freaky physician and his seductively sadistic nurse Mayumi deal with all manner of patients. Though in order to satiate his rampant injection fetish, everyone receives the same treatment: a large vaccination, whether they need it or not! From a trapeze artist suffering from insomnia, to an office worker tormented by a permanent erection, to a romance novelist with OCD and stress-induced vomiting, no one is safe from Dr. Ichirou's unique and psychedelic medical practice.
Kuuchuu Buranko and Tatami Galaxy are oddly-animated noitaminA-timeslot series in which all the episodes take place over the same time period.
KB's episodes each have a different main character and all take place over the same week (it's neat seeing ex-mains and scenes you've already seen pop up in the background of later episodes), and TG's episodes all take place over the same two years (instead of each other, if that makes sense), but in each series it's really interesting to find parallels between episodes, etc.
Both shows deal with time similarly. In both shows, each episode's event sequence is structured (more or less) the same. The repetition draws our attention to what changes in each episode, revealing details of the overarching plot and showing how different pieces are connected. Ultimately, they both feel like that "Aha!" moment which comes from putting a puzzle together and finding a conclusion, and they both contain unusual characters and a fairly bizarre outlook on the world.
Life is simply not worth living for down and out school teacher Itoshiki Nozomu. He has no hope of progress, no prospect of promotion, no chance at happiness… he is in despair! Even his name spells 'zetsubou' – 'despair', when compressed. But when the time comes to end it all, Itoshiki's attempted suicide on the first day of the new school year is foiled by relentlessly positive Fuura Kafuka. This saves Itoshiki long enough to meet his new class, and the quirky range of students under his care. Will Itoshiki Nozomu depress his students with his anguish? Or will Fuura show Zetsubou-sensei the joys of life and hope?
Watashi and Nozomu Itoshiki (from Tatami Galaxy and Sayonara Zetsubo Sensei respectively) are two oddly dark narrators. "Darkly odd" may be an equally appropriate description for guys with tendencies that are often simultaneously self-destructive and hilarious. Regardless, these pessimistic men each live in their own hyperactive, weirdly-animated, colorful worlds in which the fourth wall is made to be broken. Following a largely episodic format, Tatami Galaxy and SZS love to poke fun at modern culture. You'll always be laughing whether it's at Watashi's futile search for a raven-haired maiden, Nozomu fending off love-sick students, or even yourself. Wacky and intelligent fun.
Very similar visuals - formalist and surreal. Subject matter is not dissimlar as well - both deal with the ennui of a young man in or just out of college. The gags are wilder in SZS, but the storytelling is actually more nonlinear in 4-1/2.