Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt Review

Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt Review

Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt anime series cover art
Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt

The Anarchy Sisters

Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt (パンティ&ストッキングwithガーターベルト) is a parody series stylized after Western cartoons. It follows Panty & Stocking Anarchy, two angels kicked out of Heaven for their bad behavior. Now, they live in Daten City, where they fight ghosts to collect Heavens (a type of currency).

I don’t remember how many Heavens they need. Let’s just say 1,000. But, if they obtain that many from defeating ghosts, they’ll earn their way back into Heaven. That’s the ultimate goal of these sisters. However, despite wanting to return to Heaven, they don’t take their job very seriously.

Both of the Anarchy sisters are wild. How could they not be with a surname like Anarchy? But, Panty is definitely the wilder of the two. She’s obsessed with sex and sleeps around as much as possible. She even has a personal goal of sleeping with 1,000 guys before returning to Heaven.

Panty & Stocking Anarchy in "angel mode" from the anime series Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt
Panty & Stocking Anarchy in “angel mode”

By comparison, Stocking seems relatively normal and well-behaved. Rather than sex, she’s obsessed with sweets. Though, that doesn’t mean she doesn’t partake in Panty’s hobby of choice, too. But, Stocking is as crazy about sweets as Panty is about sex. So, she’s not exactly much better in that regard.

There are some other big differences between the sisters. Panty dresses more like a party girl while Stocking dresses in gothic lolita fashion. Panty is also more nonchalant and doesn’t care about most things. Meanwhile, Stocking is the more hateful and aggressive of the two.

But what about their names? Why are they named Panty & Stocking? Well, it has to do with their ghost-slaying weapons. Panty can turn her panties into a ghost-slaying gun. And Stocking can turn her stockings into ghost-slaying swords. The best parts of the series are the scenes of them removing these garments.

Fast-Paced Filth

I wasn’t the biggest fan of the first half of Panty & Stocking. I get that this is a cult classic and there are people out there who love this series. But, I was unimpressed by the start. And, a good start is pretty important for anime.

Of course, today, I’ll finish basically any anime I start because, even if I don’t like it, it’s something I can review. But, if I picked this series up and I didn’t have an anime review blog, I would have dropped it. I wouldn’t have made it passed the first few episodes.

Why do I think these first episodes are bad, though? The best way I can describe them is: Fast-paced filth. There’s a lot going on in these episodes visually. But, the content isn’t very interesting. It’s a lot of gross-out humor.

Panty & Stocking in their underwear from the anime series Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt
Panty & Stocking in their underwear

Let’s consider some of the ghosts featured in these opening episodes. There’s a poop ghost, a vomit ghost, a booger ghost, etc. I don’t find these things funny. I’m not the target audience for the series. And, that’s not a bad thing. But, the target audience for this series feels pretty small.

Now, I can’t talk about filth without talking about the language used in this series. Panty, Stocking, and Garterbelt are all foul-mouthed. That’s part of the appeal of the series. It’s not something you’d expect from an anime. And, it works. Considering who these characters are, it would be weird if they didn’t use language like that.

But, here’s the controversy. Should you watch Panty & Stocking in Japanese or English? A lot of people will say the dub is better. I watched the series in Japanese because that’s how I prefer to consume anime. The characters curse in both, so choose whichever you want.

Better in the Second Half

While I wasn’t a fan of the first half of the series, the second half was good. So, what’s the difference? What changed between the first six episodes and the latter seven? The episodes became less hectic and there was more of a plot.

I believe the Demon sisters, Scanty & Kneesocks Demon, were introduced in Episode 5. But, they play a larger role in the second half of the season. These two are the opposites of Panty & Stocking. They’re just demon versions of the Anarchy sisters, even using the same weapons.

The main reason the Demon sisters are good for the series is that they provide continuity. Most of the series even after their introduction follows a “monster of the week” formula. But, with the Demon sisters, there are antagonists who transcend that formula. They connect each episode to the next.

Panty & Stocking "listening" to Garterbelt from the anime series Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt
Panty & Stocking “listening” to Garterbelt

Episodic anime used to be a lot more common than they are now. And, you can really see why they fell out of favor when watching Panty & Stocking. As soon as there’s some continuity added to the series, it’s better. It’s more enjoyable to watch and easier to follow.

Now, you may have also heard that a sequel to Panty & Stocking is in the works. It’s called New Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt — how original. Trigger is going to be the studio animating it, which means it should be faithful to this season. After all, Trigger is pretty much the continuation of Gainax.

But, the reason I’m bringing up this sequel is to say that I have high hopes for it. Considering the direction the second half of this season went, it should be a fun watch. And, this is a series that can benefit from the advancements of the past 14 years.

Final Thoughts

I had to give Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt a 6/10. The first half was a 5, and the second half was a 7. So, I think 6/10 is a fair rating. That rating also lines up with how I’d recommend this to someone. If you’re not already interested in it, it’s probably not for you.

One thing that should be for you, though, is the ending song. The song used in the ED is great. I skipped the OP every time after the first. But, I always made sure to let the ED play because the song’s so good.

If you enjoyed this review, remember to share it with everyone you know. Also, follow me on your social media of choice so you don’t miss out on any future articles — links are in the footer.

Finally, I’d like to thank Roman and JasonHK for supporting DoubleSama.com at the Heika tier this month. To learn more about supporting this blog, check out DoubleSama.com/support.

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