ThatAnimeSnob's avatar

ThatAnimeSnob

  • Thessaloniki, Greece
  • Joined Dec 22, 2011
  • 42 / M

Notice: This review covers both seasons.

The premise of the series has to do with a class of losers being forced to kill their tentacle hentai teacher within a year. If they succeed, they will be rich. If they fail, the whole world will be destroyed. It’s silly, it makes no sense, and it’s just an excuse for fantasy empowerment. “Hey low-esteem student watching Assclass. Are you constantly being victimized by your society? Is everybody treating you like you are the scum of the earth, who will never succeed in anything in his life? Well, here’s a show to escape the harsh reality. You get to be an assassin who gets back on his bullies, kills his own teachers, gets lots of money for it, saves the world, and has lots of fun doing repetitive school activities! Thug life!”

And yes, I know it’s a comedy and it doesn’t need to make sense or be pragmatic, but it tries so much to be dramatic with high stakes that you simply can’t see it as a silly past-timer. Everybody has a tragic past but they are constantly doing silly things such as cross-dressing or spying on girls. One moment it’s supposed to be telling you important life lessons, and the immediate next it’s presenting assassination as a cool profession teenagers can go after. Remember kids, be good to your parents, wash your teeth every night, and kill people for a living because this yellow octopus trained you.

I can excuse the nonsense plot or the weak theme exploration, but not its lack of variety. I am not talking about different quirks for each character, it does that, I am referring to motivations. There is only one thing everybody wants to do: Kill the teacher. And there is only one thing the teacher is doing with everyone: Makes them work hard for a better future. It gets so formulaic and repetitive that you feel like you watching the exact same episode again and again.

I mean, yeah, the details change all the time, such as who is trying to kill the teacher, with what method, or in which location, but the end result is the same no matter what. There is always a battle of some sorts, Koro-sensei wins, and he lashes out a message about training hard to be better next time. I can give Assclass the credit of having a focused theme instead of being all over the place. And I like how there is variety in methods and locations. I also like how sometimes the stakes are as low as studying to score high in exams and sometimes they are high where lots of lives are at stake.

The problem is, the resolution is the same, no matter how grave the situation is. Despite the constant tactics and planning everybody seems to be using, the result is whatever the author wants it to be, since superpowers are abused and the laws of physics mean nothing. Koro-sensei has very broken powers, and thus has epic levels of plot armor. Yeah, that changes towards the end but it’s only because the show needs to end and not because someone overpowered him. As for the students using superpowers, it becomes meaningless when there are stuff such as mind control and instant healing. Free will and death lose their meaning, there is never actual tension because no matter what happens it can be easily undone. Thus the characterization is laughably meaningless.

I didn’t feel that in other anime about a teacher, such as Great Teacher Onizuka and Sayonara Zetsubo Sensei. Over there, everybody was doing something outside of a main objective. The students and assassins in Assclass on the other hand are moving like a mob and thus it becomes very hard to see them as individuals. You see them as plot devices rather than people trying to do things differently and thus developing into unique personalities. My point is, having the same goal for everybody is damaging for characterization. I understand that if they fail, the world will be destroyed, but it’s still damaging.

In fact, it goes against the core theme. If the show was promoting teamwork above everything else, I would understand the persistence of a common goal. But the formula of most episodes doesn’t play out as if it’s about working as a team. It’s mostly about a single student or assassin going after the teacher, and along the way showing something tragic in his past that made him the way he is today. What’s the point of individual backdrop stories when the end goal is the same for everyone? They are all moving towards the exact same destination no matter what they do.

What’s the point of the theme being about success when the objective is to kill the teacher? You know everybody will be constantly failing before the last episode. For a premise that is built around making the characters succeed in life, 99% of the duration is about them constantly failing. Also, it is a terrible objective. Nobody wants the planet to blow up, and nobody wants the teacher to die. The ending is either going to be a cop-out or it’s going to not feel like a success.

Beyond all that, it comes down to Assclass having dozens of unnecessary characters. The theme of the series is very specific and simple to need more than a handful for exploring it. In fact, it doesn’t need more than 2, Nagisa and the teacher. All the others are slight alterations of the exact same archetype, and the plot is basically the same in every episode: Work hard for a better future. The problem is, there is not much screen time allocated for each one of them before the focus switches to someone else, thus nobody manages to be memorable, outside the ridiculous design of the yellow octopus. And that is what leaves Assclass as nothing more that yet another forgettable school comedy.

3/10 story
7/10 animation
7/10 sound
5/10 characters
4.5/10 overall

You must be logged in to leave comments. or

Sharkfinmai23 Jun 15, 2023

Fuck you, just a bitch like Mami Nanami! Awful Review!

Astose May 21, 2021

wholeheartedly agree

candydr0ps Dec 29, 2016

Below average review- 0/10 would not recommend to read

Did you even bother watching this with an open-minded wtf, Ansatsu Kyoushitsu is anything but forgettable smh