There’s a reason I delayed this one for so long, it’s because I had no initial interest in picking it up. However, because it had milimoe/moetary elements (More on those terms in the next post) I figured I’d give it a chance. Was it a good show overall? Let’s find out as I review “Upotte!!”, a show about anthropomorphized female guns.
Warning: This review contains spoilers.
Genres: Action, Slice of Life.
Themes: ecchi, fanservice, fighting, girls with guns, school, weapons, yuri
Number of episodes: 10 ONAs + 1 bonus OVA.
There is a difference between making no sense on purpose and unintentionally being confusing. Upotte felt like the latter to me. Out of all the milimoe/moetary I’ve seen in my life so far, this one was the least enjoyable. I had no idea what it wanted to be for the longest time. Eventually I figured out it was a “Daily Lives of High School Girls, who happened to be anthropomorphized guns that occasionally got into multiplayer Call of Duty matches” (Yes, I didn’t read the ANN summary until after I’d finished the show.).
The 2nd paragraph of the summary is all you need to know about what this show’s about. There’s literally nothing else to the plot than that. I initially asked myself, “why guns?”, and later I answered my own question with:
Writer 1: Hey, the Japanese media has already anthropomorphized animals, mechas, soda cans, plants, fruits and vegetables, meat, furniture and other items Overlord-G isn’t aware of, into girls. What haven’t we anthropomorphized yet?
Writer 2: I know, GUNS!
Writer 1: What about a plot as to why?
Writer 2: So they can be used by soldiers in the future.
Writer 3: Let’s add tons of obvious sex jokes while we’re at it.
Writer 1: BRILLIANT! We’ll make millions!
Writer 4: Also, let’s not give the show a solid conclusion. Let’s have the hive mind crave more by buying the manga.
Writer 5: Also, the events that take place in the anime must absolutely make no sense whatsoever.
Writer 1: They’ll give me money, money, yeah yeah, HEY, money, money, yeah yeah!
It took me 10 seconds to simulate this animation studio discussion.
To be blunt, I spent the majority of the show asking questions on why these events took place and why was there any need for the unexpected jerk turn or why did they not disqualify Sako, or why did they let her go after a near fatal rape? I didn’t even bother asking questions during the season finale battle because I had given up by then. In short, plot is something you shouldn’t worry too much about.
I’ll give the writers points for basing the characters’ personality on the guns they’re based on, at least, even though I could care less about the difference between this and that rifle. Also, if you’re a gun aficionado, this show will give you a crash course on both the types of guns used on the show and their history. Yes, this is an ecchicational anime similar to Seikon no Quaser, minus the breastfeeding.
How about the action scenes, you may ask? Well, if you like military shooting games and movies, you’ll kinda enjoy the few battles here and the pretty cool strategies used. They were intense enough without the need for blood. This isn’t serious stuff like Gunslinger Girl or Noir so blood is unnecessary.
Expect plenty of fanservice in this one.
Characters: I didn’t care for Funko, Sixteen or Elle. Sig was the only one of the main four who remotely amused me. She was the most competent and least pitiful of the 4. It felt so, “Hey, feel sorry for me, PLEASE?”
Too bad I didn’t get to see M14 strut her stuff in a bikini along with her buddies. Honestly, the seniors were more entertaining than most of the main cast. As for the nameless male teacher, he’s okay.
Believe it or not, this is the only yuri moment that made sense to me.
Allow me to explain. The yuri in this show felt incredibly superficial to me. I mean, here are the questions I asked.
1: Why does Sig suddenly like Funko as more than just a friend ONLY after seeing Sako steal Funko’s first kiss?
2: Why does Aug have a crush on Funko?
3: Is Galil’s attachment to 18 that of a girl liking another girl or a dog attached to a girl she wants to hang out with?
4: Was Funko’s clever aqua shot against Galil REALLY impressive enough to make Sako horny and sadistically rape Funko? I was reminded of Kirie and Kosame in this scene, only I liked those girls while I didn’t care for neither Funko or Sako.
In short, the yuri was pointless.
In conclusion: I know all the questions I asked are answered in the manga but I honestly wasn’t impressed by the anime to go and read the manga. In short, this show is yet another failure as a manga lure…unless you’re part of the otaku hive mind. In any case, I have no doubt there will be a 2nd season of this show. If there won’t be, I’ll be shocked.