Mob Psycho 100, 01 – First Impressions

One-Punch Man with evil spirits and psychic powers? You will not be disappointed.

“Self-Proclaimed Psychic: Reigen Arataka, ~and Mob~”

When any non-believer (in anime, that is) thinks about the rather niche Japanese art that we appreciate so much, this is what comes to mind – and am I ever thankful that it actually exists. Absurdity, ridiculousness, over-the-top fanfare and insane tonal shifts aren’t exactly rare in anime these days, think Kill-la-Kill and even Attack on Titan, yet it is always a treat when a show can blow past even those descriptions. It only seems natural that this distinction comes from the producers and studio of One-Punch Man.

The story and dynamic are simple so far. There was enough sensory overload in this episode that a convoluted plot would have melted our brains. Exposition is the name of the game, and it gave us exactly what we needed. Reigen Arataka is, as far as we can tell, a straight up phony making a living off the existence of evil spirits. Think Peter Venkman in Ghostbusters, if our protagonist Kageyama Shigeo (Mob) is the Egon of the duo.

There has been a bit of criticism on Mob’s susceptibility to deception by means of his ‘master’. Reigen is clearly faking everything, and Mob seems to know it – pretty clearly given that we see a rise in his emotional state, or time until explosion every time his master doesn’t do something himself or falls flat on an explanation. Now, there is the chance that Mob is just super oblivious (anime-only discussion please), which would definitely still work.

The production value on this show is insane, to the point that even the original manga’s creator was surprised at how well his comically blunt drawings come to life. It’s as if the animators mashed together cells of Kill-la-Kill and One-Punch Man together and then added twice the amount of colors. The facial expressions shift wildly to the best of dead-pan all the way to extreme horror. Even if animation were lacking in areas, it would be so hard to tell with the stylistic approach taken. Hopefully, like One-Punch, this show will continue to bring more over-the-top action in each installment.

In terms of first impressions and heading forward, this was a great pilot. I want to know more about Mob, watch Reigen get his dues, and see what challenges wait in store for our odd-couple business partners. Other shows in this style aren’t exactly known for their riveting dramatic stories, so as long as there’s something to pull us in to the fantasy each week, we’ll be there to experience the insanity.

Episode Score
9.1/10 (Great)

Mob Psycho 100 - 01 - Mob Works.gif

Extra thoughts:
– It’s hard to put an episode number of after a title with a number in it.
– I want all of my businesses to have “and such” in the name.
– Oh, that was actually her face.
Butt-chin has grown up.
– At least he went out in style.
– Couldn’t even get purified salt.
– Hey evil spirit, just chill here for a minute or two, k?
– Those are the eyes of power.
– That OP was visually off-the-charts.
– I can’t even begin to describe how amazing this picture is.
The Legendary Hero makes is appearance.
Commodus would approve.

Next time: “Doubts About Youth ~the Telepathy Club Appears~”

 

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