Tag Archives: Aggretsuko

Final Thoughts: Aggretsuko

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

The first season of Aggretsuko was a show that I enjoyed thoroughly. Now that season two is out on Netflix, I got a chance to watch it while it was laying in my bed with literally nothing else to do. I was definitely hoping season two would live up to the first, and on that front I can say with confidence that it did. However, aside from Aggretsuko as a show being generally good, here are some more of my final thoughts.

#Relatable

As much as I think relatability, like the word “dark” has become an overused buzzword in reviews and commentary, for which I myself am also guilty, I do still think it a lot of contexts that it is important, especially in a Slice-of-life context. Retsuko, despite being a much different person, and living in a much different scenario, is someone that I relate to a lot, especially in the realm of self-confidence and goals. She has friends, but doesn’t have a whole lot of interests or goals, and that is definitely something I have experienced. However, its not only Retsuko. Haida, Retsuko’s office friend, is also relatable in a lot of ways. For example, when he asks Retsuko to go out with him, only to get rejected. Haida, for a lot of season two is left in the support role, still having feelings for her, but also still wanting to be a good friend. Even Anai, the newest character in the series, is somewhat relatable. His fear about not being able to make it in an oppressive corporate environment makes him paranoid, and I can definitely say cheers to that, brother!

Retsuko as a Metalhead

If you know anything about the show, its probably that a lot of Aggretsuko’s, more so in its first season, revolving around Retsuko’s secret love of Metal music and karaoke. Whenever she is sad, angry, or otherwise feeling negative, she generally defaults to hitting up a karaoke bar after work and screaming her lungs out. Eventually, Retsuko finds friends in the form of Washimi and Gori who help her work out her problems. Despite not being that big a fan of metal, I actually quite enjoyed a lot of the musically bits, especially when used as a comedic punchline. One of my favorite parts was probably near the end of season one where Retsuko goes to an office party which just so happens to have Karaoke. Retsuko makes a very drunk decision, screams her brains out, and insults her boss Ton while doing so. She later realizes that no one remembers because they were also drunk, and so she lets out a huge sigh of relief. It is one of the funnier scenes in the entire series.

Conflict, Resolution, and Marriage

One of the more interesting internal discussions that Aggretsuko has in its second season is about the concept of marriage. Near the end of the second season, Retsuko’s super rich visionary CEO boyfriend Tadano tells her that she does not want to get married, but that he still wants to spend the rest of his life with her. At first, Retsuko is conflicted, not sure if she is willing to accept just being together. Later, Retsuko confronts Ton and tries to hand him her letter of resignation after being gone from work for almost a week. However, Ton can tell something is wrong, and advises Retsuko that she should stand up for what she believes in and not let others make decisions for her. Retsuko, with the assitance of Haida, Washimi, and Gori, confronts Tadano, letting him no that its marriage or nothing.

It is definitely a timely discussion. The reality is that many in both the millennial generation as well as Gen Z are much less inclined, for a wide variety of reasons, to get married. It is a symbol of permanence, a commitment to another that is supposed to last a lifetime, but as much as some might like to, many in these generations are not in a position to get married. Economic conditions, both in Japan and the U.S. are getting worse by the day, and it is becoming harder for regular people to afford basic things, and as such most people are not focused on marriage. However, another reason marriage is less appealing is that many more people, especially women and certain minorities, also feel empowered to be free and independent due to many more people having access to higher education, and as such marriage is less appealing from that perspective as well, because it ties you to someone.

Retsuko, on the other hand, views marriage as an institution of stability. Being that she does not know what she wants to do with her life, Retsuko sees marriage as a way to not only to be stable, but also as way to become invested in another person, and even more people if she were to have kids. Its a strange, yet understandably pure feeling. It is also very #relatable.

Conclusion

Retsuko is one of the best new Slice-of-life comedies to come out in a while. Its first season was captivatingly funny, while hinting at a lot more to come, and the second season felt like the perfect delivery on that more to come. Overall, it is absolutely 100 percent worth your time.


What parts of Aggretsuko did you all enjoy? Did you enjoy it at all? Let me know in the comments below. If you would like to support Animated Observations, consider buying me a coffee on kofi:

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If you can’t, or just don’t feel like it, no worries. Thank you all for reading, and goodbye, for now, friends!

OWLS March “Feminine” Post: Aggretusko and Dealing with Harassment

Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations

Well, its women’s history month, and in honor of that OWLS is celebrating by making our theme this month “Feminine”

In honor of Women’s History Month, the OWLS bloggers will explore the concepts of femininity and feminism. We each have our own definition of these two terms and we will explore our definitions using “feminine” characters from various pop culture fandoms. We will discuss how these characters are “feminine” or show signs of a feminist agenda. We will also share our personal stories about the amazing women that supported us in our lives as well as sharing experiences involving women’s rights, oppression within the patriarchy, and/or issues of growing up as a woman or having a feminine persona.

If you haven’t already, be sure to check out Megan from Nerdy Rambles‘ post for this month, and make sure you look out for Irina’s post on the 25th.

Now, without further ado, here is the post.


This may or may not come as a surprise but in many places around the world, women deal with a lot of unequal treatment. For many places, like Saudi Arabia, this inequality is quite famous, as the country just recently lifted its ban on female drivers. Even the U.S. has largely lagged behind other developed nations in this category, with the makeup of Congress still largely under representing women. However, one country that also deals with a lot of inequality is Japan. According to the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Report, Japan remains in the bottom third, at 110 of 149 countries. For reference, Saudi Arabia sits at 141 and the U.S. actually sits at a 51.

Source: Polygon.com

Aggretsuko can be seen as somewhat of a microcosm of the problem with Japan’s inequality. The show follows Retsuko, as she deals with the problems of being both a woman and a salaried worker in Japan. Her boss is probably the worst person to ever live and constantly makes her life miserable by giving her more and more work. Each day is a new problem, but at the end of it she goes out for Karaoke and sings her favorite genre: Heavy Metal. However, despite her temporary relief, she still has to go back to her job each day. and deal with more work and more harassment.

This is also the experience of a lot of Japanese working women. According to a Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare study that was conducted in 2016, a little over 32 percent of women have experienced Sexual Harassment. That includes 30 percent of part-time workers and 35 percent of full-time workers. There is, however, no law that specifically criminalizes Sexual Harassment, only laws that help identify companies that fail to prevent it, and no such company has been identified since 2015, according to the U.S. Human Rights Report.

There is also another layer to this problem. In Aggretsuko, one of Retsuko’s coworkers, Fenneko, provides the perfect example of how females must act in order to get by. Fenneko is always agreeable, always has a welcoming smile on her face, is always giggling at her male coworkers jokes even when they are not funny. Fenneko always takes the path of least resistance, and for most Japanese women, this is what is encouraged.

In his article for the Daily Beast, Writer Jake Adelstein goes into a large amount of detail about a few distinct cases that highlight the massive amount of misogyny that exists and is directed at female workers. In one instance, a weekly news magazine called Shukan Shincho reported on a story about Vice Finance Minister Junichi Fukada verbal harassing a female reporting while attempting to ask him questions. Adelstein also quoted an anonymous female reporter as saying that “In Japanese society, any woman working outside the office is expected to be like a mama-san [manager] at a bar in Ginza—to laugh off lewd comments and unwanted touches, while using their female wiles and cuteness to squeeze as much money out of the customer as possible.”

However, the lack of attention on these problems also speaks to another problem: The unconditional veneration of Japanese culture. Its seems as though, for the many fans of anime and other forms of Japanese culture that recognize and understand the problems with said culture, there are just as many who would just rather be in love with the idea of Japan rather than the sociocultural reality.

Aggretsuko is a show that highlights many of the problems not only with harassment but also with Japanese work life in general, and the increasingly large amount of stress that comes with it. However, for working women, that stress is then multiplied by the justified fear that someone may at their workplace try and use the power they have over them to get whatever it is they want, with little in the way for recourse.


Thank you all for reading. If you would like to support The Aniwriter or are just feeling generous, consider donating on Ko-fi, or using one of my affiliate links down below.

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Check out my writing blog, Solidly Liquid!

If you can’t, or just don’t feel like it, no worries. Thank you all for reading, and goodbye, for now, friends!

This Week in Anime: Aggretsuko, Princess Mononoke, and More…

Hello again, friends!

Sorry I missed last week. I was planning on releasing it a day late after I had settled in from my trip to Anime Midwest. Btw, I went to Anime Midwest. I never actually made an update about that, so I apologize about that as well. Anyway, without further ado, your weekly dose of anime-related news.

New Anime

Here are the new announcements for this week.

Aggretsuko Receives Second Season

At a panel during Anime Expo 2018, Netflix announced that one of their more popular shows, Aggretsuko, will be receiving a second season. The announcement was made during their NETFLIX ANIME panel, where they also talked about the release date of Castlevania season 2. The show will be released sometime in 2019

Aggretsuko’s story follows an Anthropomorphic Red Panda named Retsuko, who works at a terrible desk job that she hates more than anything else. In order to get rid of her anger, she goes to Karaoke and sings Death Metal.

Netflix’s Ultraman Adaptation to be Released in 2019

Along Aggretsuko and others, the newest incarnation of a much older series Ultraman will be coming to Netflix next year. The show is based on the Manga by Eiichi Shimizu and Tomohiro Shimiguchi in 1967. A specific release date has not yet been confirmed, but it will be a worldwide release so there will be no delays.

Ultraman follows Shinjiro, a normal teen living his normal teen life when all of sudden he gets blessed with incredible powers. The “Ultraman Factor” as its called, awakens within him, and he must now use his powers to protect the earth.

Studio Trigger Becomes the First Studio to Use Patreon

Studio Trigger Patreon.png

This Week, Studio Trigger, creators of shows such as Kill La Kill and Little Witch Academia, has launched their very own Patreon. The Page already has over 2,500 supporters and the studio is now receiving over 8000 dollars a month. On the studio’s page, they say that Trigger “strives for a global audience and values communications with our fans.”

It is no secret that animation studios often have very little money to finance new projects so it would make sense to set up a Patreon page. As their page further describes, “With your support, we would like to forward funds into various aspect of the studio. Possibly a new line of merchandise, attending/conducting more events, or simply providing a little more to our staff.”

Many in the anime community, including prominent Anime YouTuber Digibro, argued that studios should move to a more people focused business model and rely more on services like Patreon.

Princess Mononoke to Return to Theatres for Select Screenings

Princess Mononoke

As part of the 2018 Studio Ghibli Fest, one of the groups most famous works, Princess Mononoke, will be airing in theatres once again for a small period of time. Both GKIDS and Fathom Events will be sponsoring three dates on which the film will premiere: Sunday, July 22, 12:55 Local time, Monday, July 23, 7:00 Local time, and Wednesday, July 25, 7:00 Local Time.

Article Shoutouts

Here are so Articles you should definitely read.

A Better Anime Awards?!

Ayano of KawaiiPaperPandas is collaborating with Raistlin on a new project that has been tenuously named the WordPress Anime Awards. After much anger at the Crunchyroll Anime Awards last year, she and Raistlin decided that it was time to start their own.

Anime That Ruin Childhood Dreams

Scott of Mechanical Anime Reviews put out a list of series that on the surface look innocent, but are actually quite terrifying. Many series like this look like this because of the aesthetic quality of anime production, but that doesn’t mean they won’t be truly horrifying. A great list and an article you should definitely give a read.


What do you guys think of this week’s anime-related news? Let me know in the comments below. Also, if you want to support the Aniwriter through donations or are just feeling generous, consider buying me a coffee on Ko-Fi. Otherwise, thanks for reading and bye for now, Friendos!