Anime Review: Akiba’s Trip – The Animation


Akiba’s Trip: Undead and Undressed was an interesting RPG & brawler with something of a novel concept –  that it was set in a re-creation of Akihabara with a level of detail that was just short of being on par with the level of detail that the Yakuza series puts into not-Kabuki-cho – by which I mean that there were some loading screens dividing up areas of the game, not much in terms of real-world alcohol to drink (because your protagonist is underage), and sadly no playable arcade games.

However, it did have a really well-done combat system, with the different weapons you could choose from having different animations and, learning the ins and outs of each weapon would be what made the difference between literally beating the pants off of a villainous otaku and equally literally losing your shirt. I bring up the “Literally” there because the game was based around the concept of defeating up pseudo-vampires (of both genders) that were menacing Akiba by beating them up and stripping them to their skivvies in order to turn them back (as with lower-tier vampires) or outright destroy them (boss vampires)

The Akiba’s Trip anime, by Gonzo, uses that concept, and rather than just stringing together a series of ecchi fight scenes (though those certainly are present), has instead decided to put together a satirical comedy series that shoots for something in the general vicinity of the work of Nabeshin. The fundamental premise is the same, but the boss Bugged One of the Week basically serving to lampoon something in relation to otaku culture. For example, the antagonist of the second episode is a Military Otaku who is a massive gatekeeper. Another episode has the abusive proprietor of a maid/butler cafe who under-schedules the hours of his employees to keep wages low and even protests that he’s “A Job Creator” before he gets stripped. An episode after that even gets into how the Japanese government views Otaku as a commodity to be exploited through Cool Japan, while also holding them as a whole as a contemptible nuisance through scapegoating them for Japan’s declining birthrate.

The satire isn’t as hard-hitting as, for example, Shimoneta is. However, it shoots to be something more than yet another ecchi series, and that’s something that I think is laudable.

Akiba’s Trip: The Animation is streaming on Funimation and Crunchyroll (and thus, also, on VRV). It also has a DVD/Blu-Ray release available on Amazon.com and RightStuf.

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