Tonari no Seki-kun: The Master of Killing Time – Anime Review
Synopsis: During class, a schoolboy named Seki-kun is always creating things to entertain himself. All he cares for is creating things with an artist’s level of perfectionism and a craftsman’s attention to detail. Real dominos, shogi with original rules, a flip book with sounds… Even Yokoi-san, who sits next to Seki-kun, always gets sucked into watching his games! (Official The Anime Network Synopsis)
Review (Warning: Minor Spoilers to Follow):
Tom: Tonari no Seki-kun is an anime that relies entirely upon execution. The idea of a show focused on a teen who can’t help but goof off with ‘toys’ in class doesn’t immediately scream of brilliance, but the way in which the series depicts Seki-kun’s exploits and Yokoi-san’s frustration and inability not to be pulled adds a lot to the concept. It helps that the series makes excellent use of its format, keeping its humor and gags paired down to a ten-minute short-form anime run time. This ensures that the premise, a weak one at that, never outstays its welcome and keeps the comedy coming every second.
Linny: Tonari no Seki-kun does a great job of showing how charming and engaging a short form show can be. What really sells each episode and its premise is how creative it gets with its plot, causing viewers to marvel at all the ridiculous ways Seki-kun manages to goof off. Tonari no Seki-kun sticks mainly to interactions between Yokoi and Seki, who present nice little contradictions to each other, giving the show an ‘odd couple’ theme as well.
Tom: Another thing keeping this series from falling flat on its face is how creative it can be. Take Seki-kun polishing his desk in one episode. It sounds and reads like a lame duck of a plot line. But the show creatively spins this into one of the series most memorable. It’s this creative ingenuity that keeps the series feeling fun and fresh through it’s twenty plus episode run, even when it’s lacking in character development. Don’t expect to see Seki-kun or even Yokoi evolve much. But what Seki-kun without a doubt gets right is the humor and charming nature of its bizarre sense of fun and charm.
Linny: The truth is there isn’t much one can really discuss or dissect about this show thanks to its simple premise. Every episode Seki-kun manages to goof off in spectacular ways while Yokoi bears witness to it all and ends up sucked into his antics either begrudgingly or gleefully, but always without fail, earning a lot of laughs along the way.
Tom: Seki-kun is such a charming little comedy, so much so it feels a shame it ended it’s run with just twenty-one episodes and two short OVA that, unfortunately, still lack a western release. It’s a perfect little anime if you’re tight on time but you’re still looking for something to unwind with.