The Pros and Cons of Shows in Separate Parts (TBR/W Post)

One of the unique things about Acchi Kocchi is that it has animations for the A and B parts.

Here’s where I’m at with TBR/W posts, using the updated list from this post.

  • Makai Ouji: Devils and Realist
  • Amagi Brilliant Park
  • Garo – Vanishing Line
  • Inari Kon Kon, Koi Iroha.
  • Chihayafuru
  • Clockwork Planet
  • Outbreak Company
  • No Game, No Life
  • Acchi Kocchi<<<< Here!
  • New Game! 

Reminders:

  • I’m only sticking to the anime lineup, so no manga here.
  • As for what I’m intending to do with each post…I’m thinking of doing my typical editorial-style posts, although the exact topic will change depending on the content.
  • For shows which are 2 seasons or more, I’m probably just going to do a post on the 1st season’s info.

Acchi Kocchi and Hinamatsuri are just two of a group of shows that have their storyline structured into “parts”. This structuring is clearest in the former, since it has animations to define those parts, but otherwise it’s harder to figure out which anime fall into that format (I only knew Hinamatsuri was one of these shows from reading interviews on Seiyuu+).

Nonetheless, there’s benefits to be gained should a story be structured like this…and of course, equivalent losses:

Pros:

  • It’s easier to tell where one storyline starts and stops, meaning it’s easier to figure out where you last were in a show like this – just remember what the previous storyline was about, if not the episode number, and then find that storyline.
  • Normally, shows with separate parts tend to be comedy shows, which allow jokes to be flung at the viewer in rapid-fire fashion so that the viewer’s interest isn’t lost.
  • Things that have shown up in one part can become relevant in later parts. The separation of parts makes these eventual appearances harder to guess and thus more unexpected. In my opinion, Hinamatsuri uses this structure to its advantage by using a beginning part to introduce something and then eventually build up to a climax which is in line with the previous parts but completely unexpected, such as how Hina is saved in episode 12 was foreshadowed way back in episode 1.
  • Parts don’t all have to be the same length and they don’t have to focus on the same group of people all the time – notably, Hinamatsuri‘s strength is that it focuses on different groups of people, revolving not just around Hina, but after 12 episodes it also has focussed on Anzu, Hitomi, Mayu (briefly) and Mao.

Cons:

  • There tends to be not enough character development between parts, so characters never become more than shallow tropes. This is especially true for those supposedly “perfect” characters like Io of Acchi Kocchi.
  • Depending on how much continuity there is between parts, the end result of a show could end up being just an awkwardly-stretched out version of a short-episode series and could probably be converted to that format without too much trouble. In fact, Saiki Kusuo no Psinan (if you were to take each short episode as a “part”) takes advantage of this by having some continuity and character development to make 120 short episodes into 24 standard-length episodes. Conversely, this could have the opposite effect by using the same jokes over and over again, such as the girls’ collective nosebleeds when Io says something cool in Acchi Kocchi.
  • Memorising by storyline does become confusing if you remember something insignificant instead of what the storyline actually is…for instance, if you were to remember the fact Io and Tsumiki meet up at a train station in Acchi Kocchi, that appears in episode 1 to introduce the characters and in episode 2 for a quick gag.
  • If it’s a comedy and the jokes are too mild, it becomes all the more obvious when it’s bingewatched – in fact, this made the show completely unbingeable for me and so I had to watch Cardcaptor Sakura episodes in between Acchi Kocchi ones. A series of boring jokes just makes the show one for the drop pile (which is, as you might have been able to figure out, what happened to Acchi Kocchi for me. Sorry, Acchi Kocchi fans!).

Acchi Kocchi did succeed in making me laugh about once an episode, so it wasn’t a complete loss. The only problem was that its low capability of making me laugh made me feel like I couldn’t finish the show after episode 1…and a few episodes later, it had been so consistent with its low laugh rate, it became disappointing. Besides, I didn’t sign a contract saying I had to finish every show on the TBR/W tag – my only obligation was the initial post – so there you have it.

So, for those who’ve seen Acchi Kocchi, what do you think it does best out of this list? For those who haven’t, which of the shows do you enjoy the most (out of the ones that employ this structure)?

Next up is more summer shows (currently I’ve only seen Angolmois, Hanebado! and Island, so it’ll be a while until my impressions are complete) and then it’s back to Golden Kamuy.

 

4 thoughts on “The Pros and Cons of Shows in Separate Parts (TBR/W Post)

Add yours

  1. I had the same feeling for Nichijou which doesn’t even put up part A and B labels, instead separating them by titles to differentiate one joke type from another (and the cast of characters involved).
    It was a little too ‘repetitive’ to digest and watching a more concrete series between those episodes helped me get through it.

    Liked by 1 person

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