Laugh-out-loud anime

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Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby bakamatt » Wed Oct 08, 2014 9:13 am

Rather than potentially hijack the heck out of Molly's introductory thread, I though I'd respond to something she said here.

She said that Nichijou was one of the few anime she'd ever seen that made her laugh out loud.

I can't argue with the scarcity of really funny anime, which is somewhat ironic considering that animation is supposed to be primarily a humorous medium here. I expect part of it is that humor is extremely linked to culture, and stuff that has the audience in Japan cracking up goes right past us. And that some things they don't intend to be funny are here, too.

I know I mentioned some title recently of which I said that almost every episode got a chuckle out of me, but I can't remember what it was. Indeed, if someone asked me to suggest a comedy anime, I'd almost have to default to Azumanga Daioh because I can't think of another one. Okay, that's not true. But the comedies that make it here tend to run to the manic (Excel Saga, Hare + Guu, Love Hina, Pani Poni Dash) and manic doesn't really work for me. Nor did Squid Girl, though I know it's a favorite of some here and elsewhere.

Slayers walks the line between fantasy adventure and comedy, but most of the humor is low-hanging fruit: parody, slapstick, or broadly-drawn characters doing silly things - except for the last shot of the "dragon cuisine" episode, which I think is the funniest joke in all of anime. Some episodes of my beloved Patlabor, particularly at the end of the second OVA, are laugh-out-loud funny, but that's not the show's primary emphasis. And the "Hot Springs Tenrei" episode of Outlaw Star is very funny - it plays like they suddenly realized, "Holy crap, we haven't done a hot springs episode yet! What are we going to do?"

I just finished Kill la Kill on Crunchyroll, and had a ball watching it. Including many smiles and some out-loud laughs. But I'd be hard pressed to defend describing it as a "comedy". The laughs were mostly laughs of pleasure at the many ways it was clever.

So I don't know. Humor isn't something I particularly go to anime for, I guess.
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby MollyMiri » Wed Oct 08, 2014 3:31 pm

Personally, I don't really look to anime for comedy, as I know much of isn't really suited to my taste. The first few episodes of Lucky Star and the first season of Haruhi Suzumiya didn't do much for me. I've heard loads about Azumanga Daioh, particularly that it's rather similar to Nichijou, but I haven't really sat down to watch it yet. For what I've heard, anime tends to do romantic comdies fairly well, like Toradora or Midori Days, but romantic comedies don't really appeal to me as a concept overall. Harem or reverse harem comedies like Love Hina and Ouran Host Club also seem to be something of a staple, but again, this may be a personal taste issue on my part rather than a failure of execution on the part of the anime.

Something I think could have potential in anime that isn't seen very often is dark comedy; something like the "Happy Family Planning" episode from Paranoia Agent comes to mind. However, while both Welcome to the NHK and Watamote were interesting, I didn't find them funny necessarily, though I can imagine there are people who would, and do.

I will say I enjoyed Squid Girl, though I wouldn't call it one of my favorites. I have recently discovered and have really enjoyed is Sayonara, Zetsubou Sensei, though I will say it relies heavily on making fun of Japanese culture and history, so I could see it may not be as accessible to an American audience. I mostly find humor in anime that aren't straight comedies, whether they're doing it intentionally, like Baccano, or unintentionally, like Code Geass or Death Note.

One thing I've heard is that a manga tends to be much funnier than its anime adaptation (I've heard this about Azumanga Daioh semi-frequently) and that manga is just funnier overall. The creator has stated he doesn't want Yotsuba&! to become an anime because he didn't think it would adapt well, so maybe there is some truth to that? Yotsuba&! is the only comedy manga I've read , and while it didn't make me laugh out loud, it was amusing in an all-ages, slice-of-lifey kind of way. So should people be looking for at manga for comedy, instead of anime?
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby ZeroRyoko1974 » Wed Oct 08, 2014 6:50 pm

Nichijou had some great moments like the principal vs deer, and Mio vs everyone (including a goat) when she loses custody of her doujinshi. First season of Mitsudomoe had some real gut splitting moments for me but the show is not for all. Tomo and Osaka made for some funny months in Azumanga. Especially the cure hiccups episode. Sue provided some funny moments from Genshiken Nadaime, especially her vicious combo on Kuchiki Titan

Also the Deer scene from Lucky Star
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby Tsunami3k » Wed Oct 08, 2014 11:56 pm

I've never maintained any sort of categorical list in my head but just off the top of my grey-matter I can think of Full Metal Panic: Fumoffu and Sexy Commando. The former simply has impeccable timing and a subversive wit that charms in a near instant while having a whole host of references to anime and [mostly Western] movies that make it a blast to catch all the references to. The latter isn't available by legitimate means but is one of the few illegitimate titles I've partaken in since I first saw it in a screening room at Anime Iowa and just had to see the rest. It's quite old and fairly obscure so the odds aren't great of it getting any sort of release here. If you've seen any of Cromartie High (one I suspect KokonTozai would bring up as a favorite), it's a bit like that with its intermittent blend of shock/absurdist humor and delinquent antics only Sexy Commando takes it much further. To describe the plot would be futile; you've simply either seen it or you haven't.

Azu is probably more straight-laced and slice-of-life-like than Nichijou strikes me as. It was adapated from a 4koma comic and the simplistic structure of the anime faithfully conveys that. It's a classic for a reason but at the same time I'm hesitant to perpetuate the idea that it's anything like the vibe I get from Nichijou.
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby Kokon Tozai » Thu Oct 09, 2014 7:29 am

Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt had me laughing aloud just about every line all the way through. And then of course there's City Hunter guarantees a few explosive gut level laughs every show.

I am usually at odds with myself here.... when I am reading reviews or promos I am always drawn towards the paranoid sci-fi political thinkers. But on a Friday after a long week I always end up watching something goofy & light hearted to unwind.
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby bakamatt » Thu Oct 09, 2014 9:20 am

Midori Days does have a couple of instances of really funny physical humor, but as a Westerner it take me a deliberate effort to get into the humor of the "person who just wants to be normal but can't" trope.

I also suspect that some comedies are better watched with a group of congenial people - based on what little I've seen, Panty & Stockings seems well-suited for that, assuming the raunchiness isn't an issue.

I can't say I've ever seen that manga versions are either funnier or not than anime versions; for me it's more a question of whether both versions work for me at all. I've loyally followed Hayate the Combat Butler and Nisekoi in manga form but haven't gotten much good out of the anime versions, and there have also been many cases where I liked the anime but not the manga. I like both incarnations of Azumanga Daioh.
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby ca_jas » Sun Oct 12, 2014 7:47 am

Good topic! I was puzzled at how I struggled to name any anime in my head that was laugh-out-loud yet I clearly remember busting a gut at so many different series.

Adding to the current list, the first viewing of FLCL has a ton of WFT laughs. The more recent Princess Jellyfish had me rolling a bit. It's been a while but I'm pretty sure I get some good laughs everytime I watch an episode of either Urusei Yatsura or Ranma.

Oh and that mushroom episode of Cowboy Bebop... :lol:
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby bakamatt » Sun Oct 12, 2014 10:47 am

Ranma is a good call; it's usually good for at least a smile and there are some very funny episodes.
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby bakamatt » Sat Oct 25, 2014 7:28 am

I've watched two of the four episodes of Denki-Gai on Crunchyroll. This is a slightly bawdy comedy about people working at a Mandarake-style fan store; the humor is based on physical comedy, quirky characters, and parodies. I'm getting smiles, chuckles, and the occasional out-loud laugh from it.
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby bakamatt » Thu Mar 05, 2015 9:10 pm

Okay, episode 4 of Outbreak Company was pretty darn funny.
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby Tsunami3k » Thu Mar 05, 2015 9:31 pm

bakamatt wrote:Okay, episode 4 of Outbreak Company was pretty darn funny.


Hmm...per Wiki:

"With Myucel absent to recover from her injuries, Shin'ichi meets Erbia Hanaiman, a werewolf woman from a nearby kingdom and becomes astonished with her drawings, but when Erbia is imprisoned under suspicions of being a spy, it's up to him to save her from being executed."
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby bakamatt » Fri Mar 06, 2015 9:10 am

Yeah, you word it right you can probably make an episode of CardCaptor Sakura sound like one from Madoka Magica...

Actually, it's not even difficult.

Spoiler: show
Sakura continues in her campaign of atonement to recapture the malefic magical forces she herself unleashed. Tomoyo wrestles with her unrequited and forbidden love for Sakura, her negligent absent mother (who appears to care more about Sakura than her), and her costume fetish. Kero binge eats again. Yukito remains unaware of his possession by the entity Yue. And Yukito and Tohya still can't keep so much as a lousy part-time job.


[irony]Besides, Erbia's execution scene was really funny...[/irony]
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby bakamatt » Sat Mar 07, 2015 7:29 pm

I apologize. It was episode five that I found particularly funny, not four. Six was pretty good, too.
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby Kitschensyngk » Wed Mar 18, 2015 10:00 pm

Although it could probably fit in more than one genre, I found Baccano! has some laugh-out-loud moments, particularly the clueless costumed petty thief duo of Isaac and Miria.
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Re: Laugh-out-loud anime

Postby Tsunami3k » Wed Mar 18, 2015 10:16 pm

Ah jeez, I had nearly forgotten Isaac and Miria. Those two were priceless.

I blew through the first 8 episodes of Kill la Kill last night and I lost count of however many times I laughed out loud. I can already chuck it on the growing pile of anime Aniplex titles I'd love to own outright but probably never will. (The Garden of Sinners, Fate/Zero [ok, pretty much all of their Type Moon lineup], Bakemonogatari [ok, pretty much all of the franchise's spinoffs], Kill la Kill, etc. Yeah, I'm still bitter!!!)
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