Medaka Box — First Impression

I read and enjoy the manga for this. It’s unique and has great meta-humor. But this adaptation is awful.

Great Expectations

Having manga you read animated can be problematic, because you already have a clear mental image of exactly what the characters sound like. This also threw me off at the beginning of Mirai Nikki, for example. That I could get used to after a couple weeks. But Medaka Box is different. The ways the characters sound and act is fundamentally wrong.

First, take Medaka. Medaka CANNOT be soft-spoken. She’s a human tornado, uprooting everything in her path. Every line she says ought to be screamed. If not screamed, it ought to at least have enough force of will and confidence to be obeyed. She is supposed to be the most formidable person on the face of the earth. Yet here she sounds like an ordinary girl (albeit with extraordinarily large breasts). This is NOT how Medaka sounds.

Zenkichi is also horribly wrong. I couldn’t quite put my finger on why, but ReisengRath helped out: Zenkichi is not stoic and cool enough. Here he’s chasing after Medaka all the time. In the manga he at least pretended to be indifferent to what she was doing. But here he just does whatever she wants. Also, his voice is about an octave too high.

Shiranui also has a much girlier voice than I imagined. Her I can probably get used to with time, however.

The Animation

Wow, this was terrible. It’s the first episode and the animation still isn’t any good. Take a look at this:

Wow, just wow.

The episode was filled with still shots as well. And with what little budget they had, the creators seemed to spend 95% of it on making Medaka’s oversized breasts jiggle.

Now in the manga, Medaka had ridiculously huge breasts as well. But they didn’t jiggle. They couldn’t, since it was a manga! Medaka’s breasts were more along the lines of, she’s the best at everything, so of course she has the best breasts too. Not that I agree with that, of course, but the breasts were, all in all, a relatively minor aspect of Medaka’s character, far behind her strength of will and powerful presence. Yet in this version they’ve chosen to make her quiet and demure and focus on the jiggling breasts.

I’ll stick with this for another episode or two at least, but I may have to drop it before my enjoyment of the manga is forever tarnished by a subpar reimagining of the characters.

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