Classroom of the Elite anime review

Classroom of the elite animefangirl

Hmm, this is bizarre. I enjoyed it when I was watching it, but Classroom of the Elite (Youkoso Jitsuryoku Shijou Shugi no Kyoushitsu e) is rapidly fading from my memory now. That’s bad, isn’t it? Or rather it’s a testament to how badly the show dropped the ball in its second half.

Blurb: In the not too distant future, the Japanese government has established the Tokyo Metropolitan Advanced Nurturing School, dedicated to instructing and fostering the generation of people that will support the country in the future. The story follows the perspective of Kiyotaka Ayanokōji, a quiet and unassuming boy who is not good at making friends and would rather keep his distance. He is a student of D-class, which is where the school dumps its inferior students in order to ridicule them. After meeting Suzune Horikita and Kikyō Kushida, two other students in his class, Kiyotaka’s situation begins to change.(wikipedia as usual)

Or, to summarize even further, “Emotionless, overpowered main character solves trivial problems on school campus.” Your enjoyment of the show will depend a lot on how much you like stoic, clever characters and how cute you think the girls are.

Where Classroom of the Elite first goes wrong is in not showing what’s so bad about being in Class D. When you’re in Yale, you’re in Yale. It shouldn’t matter whether you’re in class A or B or C. The whole premise of the show is about Kiyotaka teaming up with Horikita to make it to class A, but apart from a matter of personal pride it just seems like a hollow, pointless achievement.

Fan speculation has it that the entire Class D will be kicked out before graduation, but there is nothing in the show to support it – unless it’s one of those “Read the light novel” deals. So that being the case, the obsession of certain students with getting to Class A and the lengths their teacher will go through to get them there all seem pretty weird. You have all the privileges and facilities available to you whether you’re in class A or class D so why struggle so hard to rise higher?

If you can’t get behind or understand the motivations of the key characters then from the start the anime is in trouble And yet I still enjoyed Classroom of the Elite for what it was worth. Which wasn’t too much, but it wasn’t bad. The characters were interesting. I like pseudo-harems where the girls aren’t actively competing and have lives and objectives outside being the main character’s girlfriend. The inventive methods used to get around obstacles were interesting as well. I hope to see more uses of points to get around problems in the future.

But still, the element of “What am I fighting for!” runs strong in this one. It feels very pointless at times. And what’s worse, sometimes the show itself loses sight of that supposed goal. Episode 6 was a horrendously boring farce dedicated to stopping a peeping plot. Couldn’t they have cut that out? Halfway through the final arc there’s a panty-stealing crime as well, like, is that really necessary? Does anyone care? The studio must be really confident of getting a season two if they’re willing to waste two episodes out of twelves on breasts and panties.

Classroom of the Elite makes for a fun binge watch, but it’s a little too unfocused to make a lasting impression. As I said, they need to explain what’s so good about class A and what’s so bad about class D. The rest of the show is fine, but without that fundamental basis established it’s hard to care. Failing that, they could explain more about Kiyotaka’s history and motivations. Anything to make us invested in the story.

As it is, it’s not that good a show. Great premise, nice character designs, cute characters, no lasting impact. Watch or watch not, you’re not missing anything either way.

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