My Neighbour Seki: The Master of Killing Time ( となりの関くん ) is a seinen, comedy, anime short series adaptation of the manga written by Takuma Morishige and it revolves around a girl named Rumi Yokoi and the boy who sits beside her, Toshinari Seki, who kills time in some theatric ways during their class period.
My Neighbour Seki had not been really on my radar before. In fact, I never heard of it until it was chosen for a community-based watching event known as #AniTwitWatches over on Twitter. (You can check out my announcement for that gig here; basically we watch three episodes every Monday and share our thoughts over on Twitter via tweets, blog posts, etc. using the appropriate hashtag. You are more than welcome to join in, if you’re interested!) When I read the premise for it, I wasn’t sure that it was going to be my cup of chai, however, it’s been rather pleasant so far and I’m thankful to this event for introducing me to it!
As a way to keep track of my thoughts for reviewing purposes, I decided to do super brief episodic musings on it every Monday evening. This week it’s the first six episodes as I’ll be covering the first two weeks’ worth of watching. Also, it’s coming out on a Tuesday this time around because I’ve been under the weather the past couple days.
This wasn’t a bad first episode! The animation reminds me a bit of caricatures, which was neat and different than what I’m used to. The dominoes were outrageous, yet funny. My only question after watching it is: how the hell does he fit all of that crap into his wee book bag?
The teacher in this episode is giving a lecture on Tales of Heike and the Japanese literature nerd within me is so happy!! Also, given what Tales of Heike is about, seeing Seki play shōgi was really hilarious! Aaaaand, given the story that Rumi came up with while watching him shows that she’s pretty good at wasting time too.
With as much time as this kid wastes, I’m wondering how great his grades are. I mean, I could see him being a genius (most of them are rather eccentric) who is extremely bored out of his mind with the classes he’s in, or he could also have a bit of ADHD. Or maybe he’s just a weirdo, which also isn’t a bad a thing at all since I’m kind of one too.
Okay, my favourite part about this series is how whatever Seki-kun is doing (most of the time) loosely relates to whatever the teacher is talking about that day. For example, in this episode the teacher is chatting about the shogunate while Seki-kun plays Go. Go is all about surrounding the enemies territory (in a nutshell) and if you know anything about Japanese history, particularly during the Edo period, that was how to gain influence and wealth (again in a nutshell). I loved it.
Here we are introduced to a different kind of person looking to kill time. This guy was such an asshole! Oh man, if he messed with my stuff and annoyed me like that, I probably would have shoved him. Not going to lie. It was an interesting dynamic to see that even though Seki-kun doesn’t focus on his studies, he’s not a disruptive brat.
Seki decided to bust out with his robot figurines who joined him and Yokoi for the school’s disaster drill. I actually loved the idea of a little mecha family, and I think an anime based on that would be absolutely fabulous. Someone needs to make an original anime about a mecha family that lives a normal familiar life as soon as possible!
We’re almost one-third of the way through My Neighbour Seki and I have some rather positive feelings about it. Not all of the episode was super fantastic, but most of them have been, especially with subtle expressions and that is what I’ve been delighting in the most! If you’re interested in checking out this series, you can find it on CrunchyRoll.