Sanity’s Other Side: Quick Thoughts on Daily Lives of High School Boys

It’s like every high school boy’s childhood, er, sorta…

A slice of life anime about high school boys? Ok, when I first heard the title, my thoughts were, “Uh, how do we do this? Do we resort to cheap tricks and lots of BL to appease fangirls? No, really, how do you make a slice of life anime about boys?” It’s actually quite funny, very funny in fact. Daily Lives of High School Boys gets its draw from how much its relevancy to the audience. Any guy watching the series could easily go, “Hey, I so used to do that as a kid”.

The central characters are Tadakuni, serving as the reasonable straightman of the group, Hidenori, as the outlandish schemer of the group, and Yoshitake, as the backup for said schemes. Together the three do all the things typical boys do, like plan out summer vacations or wonder what girls’ skirts are like. There are no light music clubs, uber moe factors, or other gimmicky fanservice grabs, just slice of life comedian material.

Many of the situations can be related to, such as goofing off on the walk back home from school or the almost painful concerns of what happens when the girl you see on the train every day has a mole with a hair sticking out of it.

The art direction and design is very expressive. Expressions of shock, horror, hot-bloodedness, and mania are all over the place. All the characters, even the other classmates, have a wide array of emotions and reaction shots waiting to happen. All of the male characters are quirky and rich, but like in every slice of life, there are unimportant characters or minor characters that are represented by silhouettes or anything else. In this case, none of the sisters to the male cast have their faces shown; a neat stylistic choice as Tadakuni’s sister beats the ever loving crap out of him and his friends as a faceless horror.

But what really sells it for me is the voice acting, with solid writing, you need solid delivery. And the very solid cast has a ball with it, especially Tomokazu Sugita, voice of Hidenori, seems to take his shenanigans to the nth degree. When Hidenori and Yoshitake “host” a radio show in Tadakuni’s room, both put on their best faux talk show acts.

And it’s not just the actors that are having a field day with adapting this manga, even the writers are too. At the second episode’s end, we see the “~Daily Life of a Lady~” where a rich girl and her three butlers confront first world problems. Episode three introduces “High School Girls are Funky”, a different minor segment about three oddly very similar high school girls and their rather genre self-aware shenanigans.

Daily Lives of High School Boys has a very all around boyish charm, the guitar based bgm, the catchy OP, the ridiculous ED (the class puts on a terrible play about a swordsman, a giant teddy bear, and dude in an afro fighting the forces of evil as the audience of mostly girls watch in shock), and the atmosphere isn’t “oh look at how cute I am”, it’s different from the usual standard. Because really, with all the slice of life saturation within the past five or so years, it’s really time to shake it up. It should also be noted that the series doesn’t wave around flags trumpeting about its predominately male cast, it’s not a point to milk, just the topic of the material; a bunch of bros hanging out. The series cuts the crap and the pandering in a dark world where folks will attempt to see every showing of K-On! : the Movie.

Personally, I will be watching through this series; it looks like a nice sleeper hit while in the hustle and bustle hype of other shows currently out and about. I’d say it’s worth a shot for a good chuckle on a lazy day and I look forward to continuing on with it. Join me next time when I will disclose the identity of Pantsu Man, defender of justice.

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Inverseman

The Inverseman is an evil overlord from an alternate dimension representing humanity's anti-existence who wound up becoming a modest civil servant.

Inverseman

The Inverseman is an evil overlord from an alternate dimension representing humanity's anti-existence who wound up becoming a modest civil servant.

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