Asami ImaiYui HorieWooserTia
Wooser's Hand-to-Mouth Life: Awakening Arc
Episode 1 also reviewed here: Anime 1st episodes 2014: U-W
Also known as: Wooser no Sono Higurashi Kakusei-hen
Medium: TV, series
Year: 2014
Director: Kenji Seto
Original creator: Yoshiki Usa
Actor: Haruka Nagamune, Mamoru Miyano, Minori Ozawa, Tia, Yuri Sato, Hiroshi Kamiya, Asami Imai, Yui Horie
Keywords: Wooser, anime
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: Twelve episodes, each running 3 minutes 57 seconds
Url: http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=15750
Website category: Anime 2014
Review date: 25 November 2015
Wooser no Sono Higurashi Kakusei Hen
It's more Wooser! He's still perverted and super-lazy! He's still a faintly cute-looking yellow rabbitoid who lives with some schoolgirls, although surprisingly in some episodes it's implied that he (improbably) has a job. This is probably just so that he can skive from it and pretend to be ill, though.
It's still the same show as it had been in 2012, which is to say that it's on the borderline of there being any point in watching it. No real difference. It's still a bundle of non-sequiteurs that's not even noticeably funny, but for some people might have enough oddness to make it watchable in four-minute bursts. Everyone's mileage will vary. Wooser's not really evil this time, instead being just very, very lazy and a pervert. (Episode one shows him leering over underage girls and setting a distressingly low cut-off point after which a woman is too old to be of interest. This is significantly edgier than anything in the 2012 season, but not in an appealing way.)
However there's also a running motif of Wooser the Unlikely Hero. He dreams of saving the world, which he later deconstructs and points out that this would be quite expensive in train and bus fares. He analyses the tactical errors and possible psychological issues of a supervillain's sidekicks. (If your boss wants to destroy the world, might this explain why you keep attacking five-man sentai hero teams on your own and being defeated? Perhaps you're lonely?) Ep.12 then plays this heroism straight, with Wooser actually flying off to save the world and sacrificing his life, etc. It's done quite well, although of course in this series all continuity is throwaway and nothing is permanent, so this surprise is merely an oddity rather than a revelation that Wooser Was Really A Good Guy After All.
There's also a bit in ep.6 where he dreams of being a hero who saves the girls, only to start wondering about what might happen to us if our other dreams came true. Cue Wooser turning into a chicken and being shipped off to become drumsticks.
There are gags about Wooser vs. the world of gainful employment. He imagines a girl saying, "Which is more important: me or work?" I think the show's making comparisons with society, in particular Japanese society, so for instance Wooser sees beavers as natural resource monopolists (they dam the river) and deep sea creatures as lazy bastards who don't do anything (his heart goes out to them).
There's deconstruction of TV, movies and adventure serial tropes. Obviously the most important part of this is that thing about Hero Wooser, but there's also some silly musing about the Statue of Liberty in ep.5 and lots of references to other anime shows, e.g. Kill la Kill, Persona 4, Miss Monochrome, Girls und Panzer and IDOLM@STER. In some cases, characters of those shows even show up, complete with their original voice actor.
Then there's the perversion. Sometimes the show will switch from kiddified Hello Kitty art to a more regular anime style, because Wooser's leering at the girls. Ep.1 is almost all like that, which might fool you into thinking this is a normal show, while ep.7 has onsen fanservice. However Wooser only seems interested in looking. He doesn't do anything to the girls. They sleep in the same bed, much as you might with a pet cat, and I don't think he's trying to have his wicked way with them. He still wants their school uniforms, though.
This show is weird, but in a low-key, unimpressive way. Quite a lot of it is just Wooser having strange thoughts, e.g. if Santa flew through American airspace, would the U.S. government be capable of shooting him down? A particularly odd one is in ep.9, in which he wonders about the chances of the afterlife being rubbish, then the after-afterlife after you die again. "Let me die!" he decides. Bingo. He's in a coffin. Oh, and there's still a fair amount of darkness in the show's musings, e.g. ep.10 explaining why cherry blossom groves would be a good place to bury your victims. It's all a bit random. Lots of targets, not always that much character comedy. Wooser's characterisation is less evil, lazy and perverted than you might expect, for instance, so for instance his favourite food is meat and at one point he sings a song in praise of Otawara beef.
It's an odd show. I don't think it's particularly good at all, but I've just watched two seasons of it. Mind you, the 2015 series apparently has double-length episodes (i.e. eight minutes), so we'll see how I hold up there. Imagine a misanthropic but witty drunk being weird at you for four minutes, then singing a song and going to sleep. That's this show.