Assassination Classroom (Anime) Review
The Assassination Classroom anime is based upon the manga of the same name. Rather than attempting to re-invent the wheel, the quick rundown on the series is as follows: One day, the moon exploded, leaving it in a perpetual crescent-moon shape. The creature who claims responsibility for the destruction also claims it will destroy the world in March of next year. With powers beyond human comprehension, no military can stand against it. Yet, for some reason, it chooses to take up occupancy as a teacher in the worst class of Kunugigaoka Middle School. The fate of the world rests in the hands of its students, as they have until graduation to figure out how to murder their teacher and collect ten billion yen for saving the world.
Okay, there are a ton of characters involved in this particular series. I mean, it takes place in a Junior High classroom, so each and every one of the students in the class, as well as the rest of the students in the school have some role to play, but, in all honesty, it is actually limited to a few core characters that play major roles in each and every episode. The core characters, Nagisa Shiota, Koro-Sensei, Karma Akabane, and Karasuma Sensei each have storylines that grow and develop over the course of the series. The viewer gets a bit more insight on each of them as episodes progress and gets to watch the subtle changes that occur with each of them as they encounter and overcome obstacle after obstacle. The remainder of the characters, the other twenty plus students in E Class, the random other students of Kunugigaoka Middle School that make appearances, the other instructors that hold brief roles in E Class, and the school administrators, each play their part in the somewhat episodic nature of the series. Each of them contributes to the core of the story, but they do not grow and evolve like the core characters. Nonetheless, they make contributions.
The story is…. far-fetched. Ludicrous. Disjointed. Considering all of that, the story is easy enough to follow and the individual pieces that make it up are entertaining. There is a nice mix of light-hearted humor and drama that takes place in the majority of the episodes. Assassination Classroom is a highly episodic series. If you miss an episode here or there, you aren’t going to be missing out on much other than the gags contained therein with only minor exceptions. You can pick up the series from just about anywhere, figure out who the players are and what the course of the story is, and not feel like you have missed anything vital. It does on a couple of occasions attempt to break from this, however it does not do it all that well. The series would have been better served by sticking to the episodic format rather than attempting to string together certain groups of episodes with the forced feeling that they had.
Overall, Assassination Classroom was a fun ride. It was not heavy. It was not overly juvenile. It was not too heavily laden with pointless running gags. I am comfortable recommending it to anyone looking for some mindless fun. If you aren’t after something that you’re going to have to think about and you are not averse to a few childish gags or a core character that is an interesting mix of goofy and terrifying, you will have a good time with this one. If, on the other hand, you are frustrated by pointless episodic content, junior high behaviors, or a seemingly random assortment of weaponry, then I can’t encourage you to waste any of your time on this one. The entirety of the first season is available on Crunchyroll for your viewing pleasure.
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