Here we go, fans! This week, I’m taking on one of this season’s most, well, interesting anime that has had fans either love it for its innovative approach towards its animation or hate it for its sheer crassness and depravity. It’s the latest creation of the (in)famous anime studio Gainax, so, whichever way it goes, it will rock your face off in the process.
The pitch? Two dirty angels are stuck in a city in limbo plagued with ghosts and ghouls, and they have to destroy these monsters in order to collects Heaven coins. And in order to destroy them, one uses her stockings as a katana and the other her panties as a gun. So far, it’s a new monster-a-week show, each filled with more bright primary colours and toilet humor. Care to dive into the world of Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt?
An episode of Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt starts with a title card that references a Hollywood movie of some sort, then goes on the craziest 10-15 minutes any animator has ever put on celluloid. Panty is the crazy, sexy blonde in her signature red cocktail dress, while Stocking is the Gothic Lolita constantly accentuated with striped stockings. They go on adventures with their trusty Humvee, See-Through, with a large African-American priest named Garterbelt to guide them through their way.
As mentioned before, the show’s main premise is to send the girls out MacGuffin-hunting by defeating ghosts. And they do so relatively quickly, and in a uniquely silly way. The first half-episode alone contains enough poop jokes to make an eighth-grader feel disgusting, and just as many (almost) explicit references to sex and innuendos to make that same eighth-grader turn beet red, then run to his parents with awkward questions. The animation is about as fast paced as the innuendos and swear words (both in English and Japanese) that launch themselves out of the perfect mouths of the two main characters, changing into its signature Powerpuff Girls-esque style, then switching into an overly sexualized “anime” style, then suddenly busting out into live-action explosions. And the music. THE MUSIC. It’s catchy as all hell, and the opening theme is the first one I’ve heard that has elements of auto-tuning (done well of course). It’s fantastic!
However, like any cartoon that fits a formulaic, double 15-minute segment in the West, it does get a little repetitive. The jokes about Panty’s loose morals and constant (and I mean CONSTANT) casual encounters of the sexy kind got kind of old just in the second part of the first episode, and swearing can only get you so far! And that little dog, Chuck, has very little personality compared to the original character even the creators of the anime admitted they borrowed from. There is such thing as going too far in terms of such crass humor, with very little story to go on, if I may add.
But, honestly, when I watched it, I was too busy rollicking at the horrible jokes (in every sense of the word) and savoring such a unique animation style. Western shows that have elements of anime in them, be it character design, animation, or even source material for parody, are easily identifiable and continue to grow in number as anime continues to grow in popularity. However, I have yet to seen an anime that took elements of Western shows and parody them to this extent, which is what this show does. It’s ground-breaking, in my opinion, and it’s funny as hell, in an over-sexualized Ren and Stimpy or Itchy and Sctachy way — a guilty pleasure and a catharsis that also happens to be very well done. However, I must say that I don’t recommend it to anyone who doesn’t have a loose sense of humor and who can’t happily enjoy such silly things. That being said, it’s EXACTLY what I expected from Gainax when they said they were coming up with a show named Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt. The show is available on Crunchyroll.
Rating: 4.5 / 5 Stars
Haters who are gonna hate better get hatin’ in the comments section!