Kakushigoto – 1st Episode Review
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Synopsis: Single father Kakushi Goto has a secret. He’s a top-selling artist of popular erotic manga, but his impressionable young daughter, Hime, can never find out! Now he’s having to bend over backwards just to keep her inquisitive little mind from discovering what he does for a living. A father-daughter tale of love and laughter. (Official Funimation Synopsis)
1st Episode Review (Warning: Minor Spoilers to Follow):
Linny: So Kakushigoto’s synopsis is actually a bit misleading. While it is true that Kakushi is a manga artist, his work is not erotic smut but rather lewd/inappropriate gag manga. This makes his overpowering fear of having Hime find out his true profession feel like a bit of an overkill as while still inappropriate, it feels a lot less scandalous than being an all out erotic artist. But that overreaction makes for perfect comedy, taking Kakushi’s over the top reaction, his manic energy and applying that throughout to craft perfectly executed comedy. Watching Goto freak out anytime he comes even remotely close to being exposed produces some of the best reactions and situations. The show also manages to keep things feeling unique and hilarious by making the situations themselves as ridiculous as possible. It takes this seemingly one note gag and manages to employ it for all kinds of comedy.
Tom: Despite such a one-note, central idea, Kakushigoto knows how to build off that premise into a wide variety of additional humor. It’s about taking Goto’s obsession with keeping his true job a secret from his daughter, Hime, and seeing how other characters react to that reaction, hinder Goto’s efforts, or offer advice that only sends things more sideways. Examples include Goto’s new editor who’s well meaning, but inept, and nearly gives the whole game up on his very first day! Or there’s Hime’s pre-school teacher who’s a major manga nerd and fan of Goto’s work, but doesn’t understand that other people don’t put him on such a high pedestal. There’s also Hime’s classmates, who put ideas into her head about how best to make her dad happy, ideas that send him spiraling on how to appease his daughter’s whims without revealing his secret. This series really knows how to use its cast to full effect in the first episode alone and gives me high expectations for what’s to come.
Linny: The comedy works because its not simply fixated on Kakushi himself. Hime too becomes an ample source of gags. And while Kakushi produces over the top reaction based jokes, Hime offers straight man comedy by having the most toned down but none the less nonsensical reactions. For example, when Kakushi is forcing an editor to try and hide the manga print on his t-shirt from Hime, Hime draws all sorts of conclusions about the editor simply based on where he places his hands in an attempt to hide Kakushi’s art. From asking if he’s a CEO to a nursing mother, Hime’s innocent, sincere and totally off the mark guesses are a joy to watch. And the jokes aren’t just about Kakushi hiding his profession for Hime’s sake. We even get treated to the other hilarious reason why Kakushi likes to hide his job from other people in general. This wide range of jokes presented in its first episode make Kakushigoto so appealing despite its synopsis making it sound misleadingly narrow.
Tom: I think Kakushi makes or breaks the show. Either you love his outlandish, lively overreactions or you’re in trouble. I fall on the side of adoring this kind of character, especially as Kakushi’s voice actor, Kamiya Hiroshi, (Yato from Noragami, and Saiki from Saiki k.) does an incredible job of bringing that frantic, manic energy to life, as does the animation, which makes any scene where Goto loses his shit immediately memorable.
Linny: Going back to Hime, not only is she a good source of comedy herself but the show balances her precocious childish innocence and wiser than her age behaviour perfectly. The audience is treated to a child character who is not only cute because of her age but because of her unexpected wisdom. Though I will admit I am personally extremely partial to characters like that so I may be biased right now. All in all, Kakushigoto seems like a very promising new show for comedy fans and anyone who enjoys over the top reactions in their anime. And despite the summary making the series sound potentially lewd, there’s actually very little outright offensive content. The worst might be when the show features a very manly looking crossdresser. While the rest of the cast do not crack jokes or pass snide remarks at this character’s appearance, the character is used to scare Hime and her friends and ends up being knocked unconscious by Kakushi in an attempt to ‘save’ the kids. As someone who’s always concerned about the depiction of non-binary characters in anime, this isn’t the worst I have seen in the medium but it will likely do the show no favours in the eyes of anyone seeking more positive and wholesome depictions. Hopefully the show will refrain from such jokes in the future, and instead focus on the stellar comedy it otherwise offers through its other characters and end up as one of the stand out shows of its season.
Tom: Outside of potentially troublesome comedy centered on a cross-dressing character, Kakushigoto seems poised to be one of the Spring’s top comedy offerings. It’s got a solid premise, a wide variety of goofs, and fun characters that need only be expanded upon as the series’ continues. If you’re looking to laugh this Spring, and lord knows we all need it, Kakushigoto looks ready to get the job done, secret or no secret.
Kakushigoto is available for streaming via Funimation.com