Muteki Kanban Musume is a comedic anime based on a manga written by Sadogawa Jun. The anime was released shortly after the last manga volume. The adaptation was handled by TMS, a studio which is probably best known for Lupin III or Detective Conan, but they’ve done much more than those. None of which I can recall reviewing. Let’s take a look.
This is one of those comedic works without an over-arcing story. The basic setup is that our titular invincible delivery girl, Miki, is working as the poster girl of her family’s ramen restaurant. Miki has to juggle her work with combat challenges and various hijinks. The humour in this is a mix of parody, targets include super sentai shows, romantic comedies and action anime tropes, physical humour and zany craziness. The comedy is very effectively handled. Virtually every joke in the series is genuinely funny. The series likes to divide each episode in half, generally starting both with the same basic setup or having them be somehow related. You would think that this would lead to the second half of each episode being predictable and less entertaining, but the execution is very clever and the directions that these episodes go aren’t what you would anticipate. Which leads to a lot of uproariously funny moments. The series even manages to keep its running jokes fresh throughout the series. Partially because it doesn’t over-use any of them and partially because it constantly finds new and unexpected ways to deliver them.
The characters in this are goofy. They aren’t particularly fleshed out or three dimensional, but they do interact very well for comedic purposes and they all have their share of comedic moments. For an absurd comedy, the characters are just about perfect.
The art is highly stylised. Some scenes will look pretty ordinary but most of the time they do something bizarre with the facial expressions or there’ll be something odd thrown in. There are quite a few jokes that rely on the visuals and they’re executed very well. The art can be outright bizarre, but it’s honestly a perfect match for the series.
This series has a really good cast. Miki is voiced by Nabatame Hitomi, who also voiced Cyndi in Ika Musume and Kanade in Gokujou Seitokai, so she’s no stranger to comedic works. You’ve also got Koshimizu Ami (Claes from the first series of Gunslinger Girl), Hiyama Nobuyuki (Hiei from Yu Yu Hakusho) and Nakamura Yuuichi (FMA Brotherhood’s Greed) to name a few. The entire cast does a really good job of putting a lot of boisterous energy into their performances, which is what the series calls for most of the time. They also do well in scenes that require them to pull things back and sound more serious. The music is fairly effective.
The ho-yay factor in this one is a 2/10. There is a scene in which two women encourage a third to remove her clothes. And even a scene as ordinary as that is executed in a weird way in this anime.
So, how is Muteki Kanban Musume overall? It’s a bizarre series. The situations don’t make a lot of sense and it’s glorious. In terms of zany comedies, this one comes pretty close to perfection. It’s thoroughly enjoyable from beginning to end with a lot of really memorable, really funny moments. If you enjoy high energy zany comedies, give it a watch. My final rating is going to be a 9/10. Next week, Shin Sekai Yori.