Joshi Kausei

Joshi Kausei

Joshi Kausei anime series cover art
Joshi Kausei

Overview

Joshi Kausei (Joshikausei / 女子かう生) is an anime short comprised of three-minute episodes. Usually when reviewing anime shorts I mention whether the fact that the series was a short was a benefit or detriment to the series as a whole, but this time that doesn’t matter.

But how does it not matter? Does that mean that the series could have succeeded regardless of whether it was a short or not? No. On the contrary, this anime was going to be a failure in my eyes regardless of it was a short or not.

In fact, I’d say that being a short was actually a benefit, if only because it meant I had to suffer through less content. However, the short length of the episodes doesn’t mean I rated it any higher than I would have if the episodes was longer. Rather, it means I actually finished the series instead of dropping it.

Momoko Futo and Mayumi Furui playing with a skateboard from the anime series Joshi Kausei
Momoko and Mayumi playing with a skateboard

So what’s this series that I find to be so bad all about? It’s a slice of life, comedy series which follows three high school girls. Nothing out of the ordinary there. But there’s a catch, this series has no dialogue whatsoever. There are still voice actresses to make sighs, grunts, and other noises, but there are no lines.

The lack of dialogue alone doesn’t make this a terrible series. In fact, if done well it could be something that makes the anime stand out in a good way. But before I explain what the core issue with this series is, I need to first go over our three main characters.

Characters

Pictured below, from left to right, we have Shibumi Shibusawa, Mayumi Furui, and Momoko Futo. As the anime has no dialogue, I didn’t know what their names were before I began writing this review. Luckily MyAnimeList has the names of these characters.

Shibumi Shibusawa, Mayumi Furui, and Momoko Futo riding the train from the anime series Joshi Kausei
Shibumi, Mayumi, and Momoko riding the train

So let’s go through them each in the order mentioned above. Shibumi is the smart girl who plays everything by the book. How do we know this? Because she has glasses and we see her getting annoyed by the antics of her two friends. Obviously she’s the worst of the three.

Next we have Mayumi, the short girl who’s almost babied by the other two. Despite all being in the same grade, the other two girls seem to view her as their younger sister, or even a pet in some cases. This could be due to Mayumi being the youngest, or it could simply be due to her height and child-like personality.

The final of our trio is Momoko, who appears to be the protagonist. Not only do I say she’s the protagonist because she gets the most screen time, but also because she acts like a stereotypical, female protagonist. She’s a fun-loving airhead who prioritizes her friends above all else.

The Root of the Problem

Now that we’ve met the characters, what’s so bad about this series? It’s not just one thing, it’s the combination of multiple factors. The characters are all one-dimensional, there’s no dialogue to help build them up, there’s no plot to help move the episodes or story along, and the episodes are only three minutes so there’s no time for anything meaningful.

Let’s break down each of these issues starting with the one-dimensionality of the characters. My descriptions of the three characters are nothing more than tropes associated with each of them. They never get any sort of development, and that’s because of the next three points.

Without dialogue, it’s extremely difficult to write compelling characters. I’m not saying that it’s impossible, but it’s a lot more work. You need to be able to express everything that would normally be expressed through conversation with only action. It’s the extreme end of “show, don’t tell.”

On top of there being no dialogue, this is also a slice of life series with no actual plot. Instead, each episode is treated as an independent skit. And to make matters worse, each one of these skits is painfully mundane. For example, one is about the girls breathing on windows and drawing on the fogged up glass with their fingers.

Nothing that happens in these episodes really serves to build up the girls as characters. They simply exist within the moment of the skit.

Finally, the fact that the episodes are only three minutes long means that even if there was any sort of plot or dialogue, there’s not enough time for it to matter. I know earlier I said that it was a good thing that this series only had three-minute episodes, but really it’s a double edged sword.

Three-minute episodes means there isn’t enough time to do anything, but because of the other points I’ve mentioned, nothing is being done anyway. Therefore 22 minutes of nothing would be far less bearable, which is why I would have dropped it.

Conclusion

In the end I have to give Joshi Kausei a 1/10. There really aren’t any redeeming qualities to this anime. It’s not like it has an outstanding soundtrack, the art is pretty standard, and the animation is sub-par. I know you could watch the entire series in about 30 minutes, but it’s just not worth it.

Also, if you’re wondering which animation studio crafted this low-tier series, it’s studio Seven. For reference, more than half of the anime they’ve created are hentai, including their top three rated series. I’m not sure what made a studio like that attempt to make an anime like this.

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