Intent on showing up humanity, Squid Girl has arrived from under the sea to subdue us all for our sins. Well, after she shows she can handle working tables at a restaurant first.
What They Say
The Aizawa sisters run the business at the sea "Lemon" where they serve beach goers. During their busiest hour, a strange girl appears before the younger sister Eiko. A hat with three points, wavy, water-colored hair, and a white one-piece suit. She calls herself Squid Girl and claims to be a messenger from the sea who's come to subdue humanity. When Eiko tries to dismiss her ludicruous speech, she unleashes the wrath of Squid Girl.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Based on the seven volume manga series currently running in Japan by Masahiro Anbe, Squid Girl is one of the new fall premieres in 2010 produced and animated by Diomedea. It's an interesting studio who has had some intriguing variety in the works they've landed, from Skull Man to Kodomo no Jikan. Squid Girl fits into the supernatural comedy category which offers them a lot of room to maneuver with things since they can play it straight, go for the highly unusual and tie it all together with a dose of comedy.
The show focuses on a young girl named Squid Girl who arrives at a seaside restaurant and declares that she's there to subdue the world in a squidly fashion. Because of the way humanity has ruined the seas, she's intent on taking it all back with a vengeance. Not that anyone believes her since she looks like a kid who is simply cosplaying more than anything else. Introducing herself as Squid Girl certainly doesn't bolster her position either. Amusingly, because of the way she's fairly polite, the manager there corrals her into working as a waitress. It's fairly cute how she goes from trying to subdue humanity to working the tables without realizing it for a few minutes. It actually works in a way once she gets into it as she's told that she can't subdue humanity if she can't handle a thirty table restaurant.
Anime logic at its finest, I must say.
Because of its comedy manga origins, the episode has a breakdown of three stories across it of different lengths. This is reminiscent of some of the classic comedies of old in that you'd get half episode stories so that it wouldn't run a gag into the ground. With Squid Girl established at working at the seaside restaurant, and doing her best to learn things so she can achieve her world domination goal, she ends up meeting people along the way while using her powers at hand. The most interesting one at this state is that she has ten tentacles mixed into her hair that allows it all to blend. She's able to control them individually to great skill and she uses them to abuse people at times as well. Though some of them, such as a kid she befriends in the middle story, ends up finding her to be pretty cool and offers to help her along as her first underling.
Squid Girl works well with its multiple stories since it keeps things moving pretty nicely. The show has a rather interesting atmosphere to it where it has its wacky moments, but they're not brash and loud. In fact, the music for the show is often pretty subtle and we get a lot of quiet scenes to allow the animation to sing for itself. Squid Girl herself is the loud one and causes most of the problems while everyone else is sort of patronizing and nice to her. She's really intent on being cruel but gets caught up in the mundane aspects of life. But she's most definitely a squid girl, something that's very apparent when she blows chunks of squid ink on her boss. Where the show succeeds at this point is that it doesn't overstay the gags, has a really nice visual design that's appropriate for a comedy and has a sense of quiet comedy about that separates it from the mile a minute gags and in-jokes that populates so many other shows. Squid Girl is light, fun and charming.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70" LCoS 1080P HDTV, Dell 10.1 Netbook via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.