|What I would do for chicken nuggets…Yup.|
I’d probably lose consciousness right away, but I’d go for it.
So I haven’t blogged in forever, due to my new found busyness. I have never been so busy in my life. A bit of volunteer work here and there. School just started, so there’s that. Been taking care of my health, so exercise is now a big part of my regimen. Oh and I just happened across a new job. But I really like where I am right now. Suddenly, there are so many things that I want to do. Luckily, blogging is still one of them. It’s just become a little harder to do. Madoka-sama, is this a test? She’s testing me guys.
Anyways, I hope you enjoy this next anime I’m about to review for you. I really liked it, and I hope you do to. Just remember, everything in moderation. And that goes for food too. You don’t want an early heart attack. Or, in this case, a broken bone – like a lot of these crazies in this anime. The half-priced bento just isn’t worth it guys(unless they’re chicken nuggets). Now that that’s settled…
Anime isn’t a stranger to the weird, and that’s very much where the plot of this anime lies. On the weird side of the spectrum. However, anime has a knack for making the most of whatever eccentricities it has and changing it into something really awesome. I have no idea why these characters fight so adamantly over half-priced lunch boxes. Is it because they enjoy the brawl? Are these lunches that much of a delicacy, or are they just that poor they can’t afford anything else? It’s ridiculous…but, weirdly, awesome. Just, I wouldn’t go in it with my brain turned on, if you know what I mean.
A parody is probably the best way to define and justify the anime’s absurd premise. In addition, it is a deliciously addicting sit through that seems to make the best of its fighting trope – making it one of the funnest action shows among other action anime I’ve seen in a while.
The story revolves around a high school boy named Satou, You, your typical teenage boy with a love for video games. He lives life pretty normally, until, one day, he enters a grocery store to buy food for dinner – completely oblivious to the hungry “wolves” hiding in every aisle of the grocery store. That’s when he painfully realizes there is a war game going on at grocery stores and players called “wolves” compete for half-priced bento. He is later forced to join the ‘half-priced food lovers club’ by Yarizui, Sen, a.k.a. “The Ice Witch,” leading to his participation in the war. Along the way, he comes across various wolves. Some, more notable, such as “The Beauty by the Lake” and “The Wizard” – but through a series of unfortunate events, ends up with the title of “Pervert” cause lol.
When I first went in, I had no expectations whatsoever for this anime. I wasn’t initially engaged when it first aired on TV – three years ago! – but Ben-To managed to appeal to my tastes(no pun intended) the second time around. Probably because the second time, I went in with a more open mind.
The anime isn’t meant to be taken seriously – with the viewer’s overall fun in mind, ultimately leading to a very wacky but enjoyable experience.
Having said that, I find that most of my favorite anime series share a certain trait and aspect that leads to my overall enjoyment of a show. And that attribute is, heart. And I could definitely see that in Ben-To throughout its various usage of themes having to do with ‘chivalry’ and ‘honor’, and ‘fairness.’ Though, I’ll admit, it’s pretty weird seeing those themes being portrayed through fights over bento. Especially when most of these themes didn’t appear until the second half of the show. And I’ve gotta say, compared to the first half of its extreme fun and silliness, it kind of falls short. Especially in terms of pacing. At some point, the anime focuses a little too much on the dramatic aspects of the show that it completely forgets the visually entertaining fights over bento you come to love so much. Even though I wish I got to see more of them brawls, the finale more than makes up for that.
In terms of “fairness,” the final episode really resonated with me. In terms of “heart,” I thought episode 12 portrayed it best – leaving me with the impression of a strong finale. For those of you who’ve seen the anime, you would know how fairness plays a big role within the final episode and the mistreatment of the twins in the story…so, hopefully you can see where I’m coming from. To me, the final episode spoke more than just ‘fairness.’ It spoke…standing your ground against your fears and not running away. To not run away from your insecurities and look towards becoming stronger. To not turn to hate because you simply can’t overcome your shortcomings, or even see them as shortcomings. To not discriminate. Then again, that could just be me forgetting to turn off my brain. Though I can see why some of you would disagree with me due to its sudden change of pace in the second half, I don’t know. For those of you who haven’t seen Ben-To, you’ll just have to see for yourself and come up with your own opinions.
Just have fun with it. I sure did.
Final Verdict: [7.8/10] C+ (Visually entertaining, thumbs up for silliness, kind of wish for a sequel).