So you have this LN adaptation that decides to just inexplicably have its main characters have super powers for no real reason, toss them in a strange foreign world out of nowhere, and suddenly give them the responsibility of saving the world through playing games and stuff. I’ll give you this much: it’s better than generic garbage like Oreshura, which is basically the same old high school romance crap. Or at least it would be if it didn’t fuck up its premise like all other light novel adaptations tend to do.
Problem Children basically comes across like another Rio Rainbow Gate in that it seems like it’s trying to be a tribute to games whilst consorting to some standard anime trends. That’s cool and all, but there’s one big problem that Problem Children has that prevents it from attaining the heights of Rio Rainbow Gate: the lead characters are terrible. In fact, their level of wish-fulfillment perfection surpasses even that of Sword Art Online.
Each character has a unique super power in addition to being really good at fighting and having awesome smarts to the point that they’re ridiculously perfect, so there’s no tension whenever they’re in trouble because you know they’re just going to get out of it. That might work if they had charisma, but aside from their overpowered nature, they’re basically generic high school stereotypes. Let’s look at Rio for a minute. Yes, she’s supposedly perfect in every way and brings good luck to all, but in addition to being a really sexy (if badly drawn) woman, she always had a tough time when it came to matching wits with her opponents in various games. Whether you like her or not, at least the show gave us a chance to care about her. Am I really supposed to care about that cocky male who thinks he can fight a god and then succeeds in punching one out like it’s nobody’s business? Kirito, I still hate you, but this guy (whose name I’m not even going to bother remembering) makes you look good. In fact, I think he rivals Kazuma from Kaze No Stigma in terms of godly douchebaggery.
The girls aren’t much better either, and the fact that the anime tried to give one of them a sad backstory during an admittedly awesome eagle flying scene was just painful. You can’t make these characters relatable and sympathetic if their core is this rotten you know. It just makes them even worse because now we can’t attempt to pass them off as simple fun vehicles. The only one who comes out of this anime with some dignity is the bunny girl. And she’s just a generic moeblob that very occasionally the anime passes off for fan service. I appreciate the fact that you aren’t trying to fully sexualize her, but when you’re going to be this blatantly wish-fulfillment with your characters, you might as well go all the way. What do you have left to lose?
So yeah, Problem Children is officially a failure before it even got a chance to grow on me. I guess the occasional crazy scene and game mechanics are interesting, but the vehicles that we see all this through just plain suck. It’s basically like Last Exile: Fam or Kaze No Stigma in that regard. The fact that it’s only ten episodes and its inexplicable popularity on MAL means that I’ll stick with it till the end, but seriously…who the fuck is this anime for?
- I’ve heard a lot of people comparing this anime to Dog Days. Never saw that anime, but if this is what Dog Days is like, I’m not watching it.
- Another reason this anime sucks is because it’s not funny. Just throwing that out there.
- Edit: Apparently, this thing is a cult anime and insulting it is worse than insulting KyoAni. Yeah, didn’t see that coming.