An Anime as good as Mob Psycho is something that no one should ever pass up on. The Anime itself was one of the highlights of the year of 2016. Today as always, it’s time for me to give you my own review and let you be the judge. (I do, however, think you should watch the Anime regardless!).
Mob’s story is nothing too special, and luckily it doesn’t need to be. Mob is an awkward, dull, incredibly overpowered esper struggling his way through the social nightmare that is middle school. In the meantime, he works for fraud exorcist-for-hire Reigen (a phenomenal character, but I’ll get to that). The story ends up boiling down to Mob demolishing tougher and tougher opponents by becoming uncontrollably powerful any time he gets worked up. It works on a quickly paced arc-based structure that succeeds most of the time and feels a bit rushed at others like the arc that follows Mob’s brother Ritsu. The final few episodes hit a great stride and are impeccably paced.
This show looks absolutely stunning most of the time. Adapting from a material as crudely drawn as ONE’s works would take a massive amount of talent. BONES has just that talent. The art style hits a perfect sweet spot by utilizing rough looking character designs with rugged lines and a GOD-TIER level of polish in action sequences that makes for some of the most kinetic fights I’ve witnessed in animation. Seriously, some of the scenes in this show are jaw-droppingly awesome. The crew at BONES also is not afraid to use mixed animation styles to convey a visual message. Some segments utilize a paint-on-glass style that looks amazing and unique. The entire ending animation is done in this style and is one of the most impressive ED’s I’ve ever seen for that very reason.
Speaking of the ED, the music associated with this show is just too badass. The opening theme credited to a band simply named “MOB CHOIR” is a catchy driving techno rock track that hooked me instantly. The ED by “ALL OFF” is similarly great and sends off every episode perfectly. I have a feeling it will be a very nostalgic ED for me very soon.
Now the soundtrack. It’s by Kenji Kawai. Kenji Kawai is an absolute boss. I needn’t say anything else, but the man is a fantastic OST composer. His use of a variety of traditional instruments, electronics, a multitude of percussion instruments, and electronic instruments is always effective. The battle music is intense and kicks ass. The sullen moments are beautiful and emotionally written. Tracks can be used repetitively, but that is a common occurrence in anime. He’s awesome. Quick plug for the Seirei no Moribito OST, another great score he wrote for another great show. Alright. Enough rambling.
Man, the characters in this show are so fun. I think the biggest takeaway I had from these characters was just how good-spirited they all were. Any character you thought could be written off as “just some jerk” ended up being really pleasant and likable. The members of the Body Improvement Club could have been rude and unaccepting of someone as out of shape and traditionally “uncool” as Mob, but instead, they openly welcome him and treat him with care and respect. Teru could have remained an uncompromisingly pompous prick, but instead turns into an honestly good guy who is willing to help Mob. Dimple, though seemingly bent on world domination, helps Mob and offers him advice after Mob defeats him.
And then there’s Reigen. A fraud, con-artist, and outright liar who tricks people into paying for his services is virtually the coolest most genuinely good-hearted character in the whole show. He takes Mob, an insecure middle schooler struggling with his powers, under his wing and provides him with advice that inadvertently affects his entire world-view for the better. Reigen alone makes this show worth watching, and if you’ve read what I’ve written above, then you know there are MANY things that make this show worth watching.