Continuing to exist in a perpetual state of despair, Nozomu Itoshiki is still trying to teach his students that the world is never as good as it seems. From discussing the ridiculous hold that superstitions have on mankind and people’s hidden switches, to society’s refusal to accept more than one outstanding talent in any given individual, no topic is safe from the Itoshiki treatment! Forever becoming caught up in his students’ momentum, this time Itoshiki-sensei finds himself joining a group travelling to Hokkaido on a journey of self-discovery, acquiring his very own body double and getting lost in a city of dicey third choices.
Holding strictly to his family's creed, Kou Ichinomiya has never once, in his life of privilege, owed anything to anyone – that is, until a self-proclaimed Venusian named Nino saves him from drowning in the wake of a dire accident involving Kou's pants. Eternally indebted to the supposed extraterrestrial, Kou moves into her little community under the bridge along the Arakawa river. Ripped from his life of luxury and success, the young Tokyo U graduate now must adjust to his well-appointed hovel, strange new neighbors, and peculiar lover, Nino.
As a huge fan of Zetsubou Sensei series, it was easy for me to get to the correct mindset for Arakawa. Both share such a similar humor and character design that they are almost the same. only the animation style differentiate them from one another. The main character in both even have the same voice actor.
Both animes are driven by the character caricatures that take one aspect of their persona and twist it into a running gag, but unlike Zetsubou Sensei, the characters in Arakawa are deeper than they would seem in the surface.
Punie is a princess of Magical Land who is in line with the throne; but before she can inherit it and become the queen, she must travel to Earth to prove to her mother, Esmeralda, that she has what it takes. In this new strange land, Punie is a cute girl who is very easy to get along with; but when she is upset, she uses her magical staff to take care of business! And when magic isn’t an option, Punie uses wrestling moves known as “Submission” to take down her enemy like a true queen. Together with her mascot Paya-tan, Punie will make new friends and take down new foes with style!
This recommendation might seem more than a little bit of a stretch, but did you enjoy how, in this season of Zetsubou Sensei, Chiri's murderous tendencies were emphasized even more than usual? Are you someone whose funny bone is simply tickled pink at the idea of a cute girl who savagely slays her foes?
If so, then you may, just may, enjoy the brutal carnage of Dai Mahou Touge, which is all about one cute girl and her vicious cruelties (fun!). The latter series lacks the sharp satire and endless visual inventiveness of Zetsubou Sensei, though, so keep those differences in mind - it's strictly for the black humour elements I think these could be compared.
Kanako Miyamae hates boys so much that she breaks out into hives after any physical contact with them. So when she is able to transfer to the Ame no Kisaki Girl’s school, Kanako is overjoyed that she can now search for her fated yuri partner. When she arrives, Kanako meets Shidou Mariya, a beautiful young girl who is exactly her type... except that Mariya is really a sarcastic and sadistic young boy who is masquerading as a girl! With no intention of being expelled from school, Mariya threatens Kanako into keeping his secret, and decides to guard her twenty-four hours a day to ensure that she does. Now Kanako must share a room with Mariya who is gleefully making her life a misery while using his ‘feminine’ charms to stop her protesting. Throw into the mix Ryuuken, the most popular girl in school who has vowed to protect her; and Kiri - who claims they are dating to prevent her from being bullied - and it seems as if Kanako’s dream of all-girl school life will be nothing like she imagined!
If you liked Shaft's style of animation in Zan Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei, then you're guaranteed to like the visual style of Maria Holic. Aside from the visuals, while the topic of each series is vastly different, both take place in a school environment and share a similar style of humour.
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?
If you liked the negativity of Zan Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei, then you may want to consider Welcome to the NHK. Both series take a darker look at life and society in general, and while it's dealt with in a different way, there's just as much despair, if not more, in NHK.