it might just be the penguin idols
March 21, 2017 3:21 PM   Subscribe

I wasn't even paying enough attention to the announcements or the upcoming anime charts to know that what would become the Japanese anime fandom's biggest anime of Winter 2017—a moe animal girls show based off of a defunct mobile game rendered in exceedingly poor CG—even existed. But here we are.
Trying to explain the weird charm of Kemono Friends.

There's a weird undertone to the show that leads to fan engagement and speculation:
it’s easy to think of the show as a Dora the Explorer thing — except it aired as a late night anime. The more you watch the show too, the more you realize the Japanese fanbase might be onto something. There seems to be a cynical, dark past to Japari Park amidst all this cute girls doing cute things crap.
As one Japanese viral tweet put it, the first episode is nothing special, but you're hooked by the third.

There is of course a fan wiki.
posted by MartinWisse (9 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Is this gonna be a spoiler-free thread? I haven't seen today's episode yet but apparently it's a doozy.
posted by teraflop at 3:36 PM on March 21, 2017

I'm watching it to find out what kind of apocalypse they survived… and for the penguin idols.
posted by robcorr at 6:02 PM on March 21, 2017

Oh god, just finished watching episode 11. I WAS NOT PREPARED FOR THIS.
posted by teraflop at 8:55 PM on March 21, 2017

The reddit discussion for episode 11 is probably the most detailed discussion of the current episode at the moment (in English.) Lots of spoilers in there for the series so dont jump in there until you've seen through 11.

The Japanese keywords for 'Kaban-chan' and' Kemono Friends' were trending in the top 5 on Twitter last night and this morning- so they've clearly got a rapt audience.
posted by gen at 10:27 PM on March 21, 2017

Shades of Adventure Time, Madoka, and other cartoons with dark twists, it sounds like?
posted by Going To Maine at 11:18 PM on March 21, 2017


A miracle of indie gaming, [Five Nights at Freddy’s] first began its life not as the creepy game with automatons in a diner but as a kid’s game. Its visuals freaked players out and that made the developer sad until he realized that could make a good horror game.

I did not know this, and would be really interested in reading a detailed history if someone wants to make that post.
posted by Going To Maine at 11:23 PM on March 21, 2017

And I enjoy my ongoing of Nassim Taleb as someone who hates pleasure reading.
posted by Going To Maine at 11:25 PM on March 21, 2017

Sounds a bit like an even more expositionally pared down version of Haibane Renmei, which is one of my favorite animes, so I'll definitely have to check it out.
posted by gusottertrout at 5:37 AM on March 22, 2017

I watched the first couple of episodes of Kemono Friends with a friend tonight. It's quite charming, with an occluded layer of weirdness that keeps things off kilter. I'm not sure how much I'll end up watching, but I enjoyed it.
posted by Kattullus at 3:56 PM on March 22, 2017

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