Yoshimasa HosoyaHiroshi KamiyaTsuyoshi KoyamaMinami Tsuda
Sakugan
Medium: TV, series
Year: 2021
Writer/director: Jun'ichi Wada
Actor: Hikaru Midorikawa, Hiroki Touchi, Hiroshi Kamiya, Kana Hanazawa, Kanon Amane, Minami Tsuda, Misaki Watada, Toshiyuki Toyonaga, Tsuyoshi Koyama, Yoshimasa Hosoya
Keywords: anime, SF
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: 12 episodes
Url: https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=22383
Website category: Anime 2021
Review date: 22 November 2022
saku gan
It's not quite as good as you might expect it to be, but it's full of energy and fun. I'm reminded of Gurren Lagann (and I'd say the same about that too). It's set in the distant future, in an underworld Labyrinth that nonetheless has weather, rain, etc. How? Don't ask me. The human race lives there. Just like Made in Abyss, explorers go off into this Labyrinth, with the survivors finding treasure and making themselves rich. (They're called Markers.)
This is no Made in Abyss, though. Instead, it's basically a laugh. Its cast includes:
1. MEMEMPU = a 9-year-old university graduate, full of optimism and forceful belief in herself. She believes in following your dreams and good luck trying to stop her. She'll just rewire your giant robot or something. She's fun. Mind you, for someone so fond of claiming to be superintelligent, she's also an idiot who nearly gets herself killed.
2. GAGUMBER = her deadbeat dad. He used to be a Marker, but now he's given up and mostly just gets drunk. He'll also gamble money away and chase girls. If a child accuses him of being a scumbag, he'll call that an adult's job. He's got the intellectual curiosity of a garden slug. Even Gagumber himself will cheerfully admit that he's an idiot and his antics can be a bit hard to take sometimes, but he's also dedicated to being Memempu's dad (in his questionable way) and he's got a much better (if sometimes overdone) appreciation of danger than his daughter.
They love each other. But they're usually being rude to each other.
If you watch this show, you'll lose patience with both of these idiots at some point. In ep.5, for instance, Gagumber tries to stop Memempu from fixing a machine that would rescue a forest. "The world is full of things you're better off not seeing, knowing or fixing." Piss off, Gagumber. They're also, though, both passionate about the things they love and capable of being cool.
There are some surprising characters and unusual moral lessons. "Not everyone's dreams can come true." Ep.11 feels like a complete side-step plotwise, but it's indispensable in the chart of the show's evolving messages and arguments. Irresponsible parenting is a thing, obviously. SPOILER trying to kill Gagumber in ep.8 is a huge episode. Pretty much the whole cast is deeply questionable and shouldn't be trusted an inch. At its best, this show is a lot of fun. When Gagumber's being an even bigger twat than usual, I was fast-forwarding. It's also portraying a tougher, nastier world than you might think from the general tone.
I don't know if I'd recommend this slightly random show, but I can't fault its verve. And I like Memempu. Maybe try an episode or two and see what you think.