This anime (which I will simply call Mondaiji) is basically a filler series. Meaning, something you will watch between better titles or when there is nothing good on tv. It is one of those light shows people watch as relaxation or when they are very bored. Sure, I make it sound like it is a bad thing when it isn’t but then again I am not watching anime because I am bored.
The story is about three teenagers from our world being transferred to a magical land where they need to help it help it be freed from the tyranny of demon lords. Sounds a bit typical so far, yet it plays a twist on this by making the whole thing to feel like it’s a parody. The teenagers are really messed up in their heads and possess superpowers that surpass even those of the demon lords. And the way to save the world is by winning in games. And their guide in this world is a sexy bunny rabbit. Sounds funny? Yes! Do they do much with any of all that besides one joke after another? No!
If you try to see this show for any other reason than comedy, then chances are you will be greatly disappointed with how effortless everything is. The heroes have simply no trouble beating all the challenges, which are nothing but silly games in a fantasy-themed amusement part. They are also supposed to have their personal issues but those mean nothing if they can waltz through the challenges within minutes and be constantly the heroes of the day. It sort of takes away any reason to keep watching. But then again the whole show is about wishful thinking than drama or tension so I guess it is what the creators intended for it to be all along. You have these arrogant overpowered kids who are bored out of their minds in our world and wish to show off how cool they are in a fictional land that looks like a fairy tale, where everything is a joke and no real worries exist. What kind of insecured kid wouldn’t like that?
As far as the humour goes, it is ok to the most part but just like everything else it is light and silly. It mostly has to do with the heroes being badass and manipulating, and that bunny girl keep being sexually humiliated despite all her good intensions. It sort of becomes repetitive from a point on but the show is only 10 episodes so it doesn’t last long enough to become boring in a redundant way. I know many who think it is too short for its content but I don’t agree; if it doesn’t have much of a plot or any significant tension then it might as well stop while it is still good, instead of keep getting more of it until nobody cares anymore. They did that with the very similar Dog Days and look how bad it turned out to be for not ending in half a season. They could have made a continuation where the heroes are starting to lose or the drama becomes more prominent than the humour but that would move too far away from the initial goal of the show and it would displease most. So it was fine to end where it did.
As far as artwork goes, there is nothing noteworthy. I mean, ok, the fantasy land looks colourful and eye-catchy, and the bunny girl is hot. That is all there is to it; nothing exceptional in terms or details, cinematics, fluent animation or special effects during the battles. The characters are as stereotypical as they get, both in design as well as personality.
The music themes are forgettable fluff, and the voice acting is lost under the very light presentation of the story. There are no bigshot names in the production team either; studio, directors, and writer are nobodies who only did silly stuff in the past and don’t intend to create something memorable EVER!
Many loved the lead boy for being an arrogant bastard than the usually pussy protagonist of harems that is in almost every show there is today. That doesn’t make him any special or memorable since we get a badass like him once in every season and they are all as forgettable as the wimps they try not to resemble. The other two girls that are in the same team as him are from a point on completely worthless too, since he alone can defeat EVERYTHING with no support from friends or allies. What was the point of having three heroes when one was more than enough while the other two barely matter or are noticed?
Let’s be frank of what this show is, ok? A light watch to chuckle for a couple of times before you find a better show and forget it within a week. It is not bad yet nothing special to bother recommending to others. I came, I saw, I left, I remember nothing about it. There is no value in it exactly because it never tried to be anything more than an anecdote.
This review may contain my own opinion and possible minor spoilers, read at your own risk!
If you still want to read this review, here we go then.
Story: The story is about 3 people, You KASUKABE, Asuka KUDOU and Izayoi SAKAMAKI, whom are suddenly invited and teleported to the unknown land known as "Little Garden". The reason is, the Black Rabbit summoned them since each of them own an unique ability. I'll explain why Black Rabbit summoned them later. First, let's see... what exactly is Little Garden? Little Garden is world where anyone can host Gift Games, in which any possible prizes (from gift cards, which can be used in gift games to help you out, to one's lifes...) may be won or lost by gods, spirits, monsters or people with extraordinary abilities like You, Asuka and Izayoi. Furthermore, clans exist in this world. Each clan contains few or a lot of people that participate in games (depending on rules, which are made by hosts, or you could call them challengers) in order to help each other win. Most clans posses their own flags and territories like an actual country.
Why did Black Rabbit summon You, Asuka and Izayoi? Basically, Black Rabbit is part of the clan that used to be like any other clan, until they lost its name and members in the Game, which led to losing its status as an actual clan.
Now the No-Name clan seeks a new talent to make comeback and to regain its flag and name. Thus, Black Rabbit summoned our children in order to get help from them in regaining clan's pride. Will they help Black Rabbit or just ditch her, or perhaps make some kind of trade? And if they join the clan, will they be able to succeed with the redemption of the clan? Watch the anime to find out!
Animation: The animation in this anime is good. I don't know what more to say about that, but again, some people may have different tastes.
Sound: Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sou Desu yo has decent soundtrack. The main thing that caught my eye (or more like ear) though, would be the opening, which is very catchy. 1-2-3! Black or White~?
Black Rabbit - Funny airhead character with oppais, bunny ears and tail. Always targeted by everyone's teasing. She will do anything in order for the clan to succeed. You'll love this character right away, as she is always interesting to watch. ALWAYS.
Izayoi Sakamaki - A not-so-typical teenager with unknown ability that overpowers anything and anyone in his way. Izayoi's main reason for participating in clan's redemption is that it could be fun, unlike his original world. He is the one who always keeps his cool.
Asuka Kudou - Bossy and friendly Ojou-sama with big ego. Asuka, who didn't like her original world much enjoys Little Garden a lot with her psychic powers.
You Kasukabe - Your typical mischievous animal lover with cat pet. Kasukabe also has an unique power like Asuka and Izayoi.
Overall: Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sou Desu yo? also known as just "Problem Children" is an anime that is worthwhile of your time. It's main course is strange comedy, with few fan service here and there (mainly in OVA). If you're looking to have fun by watching a laid-back anime, yet sometimes serious, this anime is just for you!
Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sou Desu yo? is a mediocre show that doesn't take itself seriously. The story is utter rubbish, the characters are annoying, the animation is purposefully simplistic to downright crude at times, and the sound is cartoonish to the extreme. Luckily, the complete self-awareness of this show makes it a passable view.
This isn't a show for everyone, obviously. Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sou Desu yo? is in essence one of those shows you watch, enjoy, and forget as soon as you see them. The plot is not captivating, the characters aren't memorable, the animation and sound aren't works of art, and the overall experience isn't particularly impressive. What the anime is though, is fun. There are moments of humor that range between banal to brilliant, boring to breathtaking, but basically better than average overall.
Yes, there is fan service, yes there is shameless use of standard scenes, yes, there is a pervert demon thing which is quite friendly, and yes, you have seen every single detail here in other shows before. This is formulaic to an extreme level. Luckily, following a recipe leads to a tasty dish... if one that gets boring after the millionth time or so. Still, while watching it you have your fun, after it you understand it was a complete waste of time. Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sou Desu yo? is the potato chips of the anime world. Yes, I'm a bit salty about watching it.
Still, for something so lacking in anything unique, it has plenty of personality. It is absolutely average in the grand scale of things, but if you aren't numb to the tropes that make the series (strange world, high stakes games, self-aware parody, standard superpowered fight scenes, etc), it is enjoyable. Myself, I found it full of potential but ultimately dissapointingly average.
Writing (Story and Characters):
In essence, the story is "the standard superpowered teens get sucked into world and like fighting". Having been done to death, the writing is to give some stylistic differentiation. Humor supplies the greatest moments of Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sou Desu yo? with moments of either clever or self-aware writing (including the famous speech that pokes fun at fan service for trying to be more sexual than straight-up pornography). There is some rather heavy handed reliance on one hero being super-strong, which takes away a lot of the drama in the combat scenes. The character-driven side is also rather raw and simplistic. Still, that choice is more about style than anything else.
Plot is maybe too strong a word in the context of a show like Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sou Desu yo?, since it is more than ordinary. It relies heavily on well known tropes, and doesn't stray from them. It is the standard mix of fluff, challenges, and exposition about the world and characters. For such a short series, there isn't really time for any of these to be particularly developed, and the story ends before there is any resolution to any element. Still, there is a charm that made these cliches so popular which manages to salvage the story from being a complete disaster, along with the fact that it remains with narrow enough a focus to not become incoherent and avoids becoming convoluted for the sake of fake complexity.
A well rounded cast basically sets the tone of the series, but unfortunately this is the weakest point of Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sou Desu yo? - the cast is not particularly well suited to either humor nor drama. They are just aren't an interesting bunch, and their moments where they actually are problem children end rather early in the series. The character-driven side of the show falls with the complete lack of development of any of them other than perhaps one side character. It ends up with a cast aimed at a lower age group than the cleverest bits of humor, and as such ends up removing a lot of the strength of the series.
Particularly bad moments exist, but still, the humor helps elevate this show from being completely mundane. The plentiful problems with the writing (a weak story, boring characters, and both overly simplistic) are quite obvious, but Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sou Desu yo? manages to make up for it with plenty of form in lieu of substance. A little bit of actual substance could have made the writing a lot more memorable, but being memorable isn't what anyone went for, rather than supplying some moments that the viewers can enjoy, and in that there is a success.
Art (Animation and Sound):
When the plot and characters are weak, the added value has to be in the art. Fortunately, the artwork of Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sou Desu yo? is clever enough to know just how much creativity and a reliance on gimmicks is necessary. The artwork is particularly crude at the right times, going over the top at many times, and relying on gimmicky aninmation and sound. The choices of artwork are all about form, keeping things light hearted and on the border between crude and extremely expressive. In no way is the artwork groundbreaking, but in no way is it broken.
From an animation perspective, there are plenty of choices that work for Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sou Desu yo?'s longevity. There is no heavy reliance on realism, and things get proudly cartoonish. The character designs are unoriginal, and there is a heavy relliance on animation tricks and tropes in order to give personality to everything. Luckily, that works surprisingly well and ends up fitting with the self-aware narrative of the show. While something that looks like this feels more like it belongs in the pre-2006 days of artwork, it is still rather good execution of that style even if it makes it feel particularly low budget at times. And hey, it is not often when using the playboy rabbit bunny girl for fan service in this way - people avoid it becuase of the cliche, so it was actually a welcome surprise.
Voice acting is about finding a balance between subtlety and emotion. At the start, we get a nice blanace in Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sou Desu yo?, but it is quickly lost as it seems that planning just went out the window and most of the show was the creators winging it. Still, while childish, the voice acting is very effective at what it does. Keeping things light hearted and fun is no small feat, and doing that without becoming annoying is hard. Fortunately, the style of the sound (in voice acting, effects, and soundtrack) is a perfect fit for the show. The ending song is also particularly inspired in the context of the show itself, something that rarely happens.
While the animation and sound are good, they combine into artwork which gives the writing just the right context. It is incredibly gratifying to see that above average artwork, if used correctly, can change a show from having a boring premise, mediocre story, and lame characters into something truly fun. Without solid writing, the technical aspects of the show aren't good enough to make it memorable. Still, this works out nicely overall, giving the moments of humor in the writing their time to shine. The artwork is fantastic in what it does, even if in itself it is just somewhat above average.
Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sou Desu yo? is an utter waste of time. It is a fun way to waste time, but you won't remember anything other than a couple of jokes by the time you finished watching it. It isn't bad. It isn't good. It has bad moments and good moments, and while fun, I'm not quite sure if I like it or not. I can see why some people love the show while others will find it utterly moronic. It is a surprisingly difficult call to make.
A perfect example of what happens when Dues Ex Machina runs rampant.
I guess there was a story here, but it's disjointed and unfinished nature left more than a little something to be desired. What makes it worse is the fact that it had real potential to be a great anime but fell so short of the mark because it never went anywhere that you're just left with a bitter taste.
Actually a decent looking show with it's stylized characters, well done scenes, and everything else having a solid flow to it. I can't say it's the best artwork I've ever seen since there are older titles which looked tons better but this wasn't horrible by any stretch of the imagination.
Music, voice acting, and various sounds were all fluid and non-grating. I can't really complain about it at all other than to say it didn't stand out in a good or bad way.
Another point of the show which was actually interesting to me but couldn't, on it's own, hold up the show. Most of the characters were interesting with a hidden depth that they never really went into. It left me wanting to know more about each of the 3 protagonists but being that the show was so short they never delved into them leaving a bit of a black mark in the end.
There's something to be said for believable plot devices beyond what my opening statement points out. More over the show just has this massive unfinished feel to it, and just ruins the story they were seemingly trying to tell. What with the unfinished feel and the blatant over use of an unfavorable plot device this show just really isn't worth sitting through unless you have nothing better to watch. It's not horrible, I was very interested in it through out but it just leaves off with nothing explained and nothing resolved.
Problem Children Are Coming From Another World, Aren't They? (or Problem Children as we'll call it for this review), is somewhat of a frustrating series. It isn't that it's a bad show, it's that, the show hasn't been given enough episodes to really prove itself and by the time you properly warm to it, it's all over and done with.
That said, before we tackle the above issue, lets talk about the plot. Three, somewhat bored, children are transported from their worlds to a place known as "The Little Garden". In this place there are many communities which make their names by having people take part in a number of Gift Games, games where both sides put something down as a bet. It goes without saying that the communities that win the most games are the most well known in this world. Now you may be thinking "Just what are the rules of these gift games?", well, one of the amusing thing is that the rules are completely made up by the player who challenges the other side to one of these games, leaving the field open for some very interesting games indeed. Of course, you couldn't have a decent story without some bad guys, and as such the plot also reveals that certain communities and 'demon lords' tend to pick on the lesser communities unfairly. Our characters become part of a community which isn't very well known and doesn't even have a flag or name to call its own, but they set about trying to build it up regardless and take down some of these unfair demon lords, but can they really manage it?
Of our group of Problem Children we have Asuka who has the power to make people obey her every command, Izayoi who is stupidly powerful when it comes to physical moves and it quickly becomes apparent that you'd struggle to find anything that can take him on and win, and lastly we have You, who has the ability to talk to animals. It's an interesting bunch of characters, and after a few episodes you find yourself warming to them quite well and willing them to do well in these gift games. Of our three characters Asuka and You are the most likeable, but that's partly because the show goes to the effort of explaining their pasts and their feelings, by the end of the series we're left knowing very little about Izayoi apart from the fact he's very powerful and very smart, which is hard to accept in the first place, never mind when the series neglects to explain just why he's smart and such. Izayoi aside, characters are actually handled quite well with all of our main cast getting their chance in the spotlight, and enemies being interesting, but never sticking around long enough for them to become boring. The series seems to pride itself more on action than explaining things, which is certainly not a bad thing with characters like Izayoi around.
The shows pacing isn't bad either once it gets going. The first episode throws us into utter madness, the second plays catch up trying to actually explain the madness of the first, and the third tries to settle us into the pacing we'll have for the rest of the series. After that we're treated to a couple of story arcs which are interesting, but never focused on long enough to become boring. The show is about action, adventure, and comedy, all of which is does quite well for the most part, but never outstandingly well, which is amusing because for some odd reason Problem Children really feels like a charming show which pulls the viewer into this insane world, even though to look from afar the show is nothing special, there are other anime in that genre which are longer and arguably better, but there is still something about Problem Children which draws you in. Being able to pinpoint just what it is that draws you in, however, is by no means an easy task.
All of that said, the problem with Problem Children is the length of it. You don't really settle into the show until the fifth episode, and at that point you're halfway through. Frankly, when it ends you're left wanting much more, especially when the ending feels much more like an ending to an arc than it does the ending to the story, 25 episodes would have suited this show MUCH more. It's such a shame to be left feeling so disappointed, because it really is a nice show, but I struggle to recommend it when I know there won't be many anime fans out there that will want to watch a ten episode series, get really into it halfway through, and then be left disappointed when it ends too soon. Again, there are better shows in the genre and Problem Children will lose out because of its length.
To quickly go over the animation; nothing is outstanding, but it still all very nice. As you'd expect from a series like this, the world is all very colourful and vivid, with character designs also being very colourful and pleasing to the eye. It isn't amazing, but it certainly isn't bad and the animation is certainly one of the things which will draw you in and keep you there.
Where the soundtrack is concerned, it actually isn't that special. I don't remember much of it, mostly because the characters and setting are much more interesting and the music just really blends in until you rarely notice it expect for maybe one, somewhat calmer, episode. That said, the opening for the series is actually very catchy and it was nice to have something as upbeat and crazy as the show quickly proved to be. The voice acting was also strong, with each voice fitting to the characters, Izayoi actually has the most interesting performance out of all of them, despite being the character we learn least about.
In closing: Problem Children isn't a bad show, but it ends too soon and will leave the viewer disappointed in its ending. Given more episodes it would have been perfectly fine, but there are better shows in the genre that deserve your attention more.