Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi

Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi is a criminally underrated series that I have no idea why it’s not better known

it has a pretty big pedigree, it’s made by studio Gainax and seems like a spiritual successor to FLCL, it contains similar themes of growing up and a similar zany sense of humor and style, it was even referenced in Gurren Lagaan (which I have not seen yet mind you), the evil robot in episode 3 for example looks exactly like some of the robots in Gurren Lagann

yet it seems pretty forgotten, which is a shame because this is one of the funniest animes I’ve ever seen, I first watched over 5 years ago when they played it on G4-Tech TV (as it was known then)

the show is set in Osaka and follows two kids named Sasshi and Arumi, Sasshi is a nerd who wears a cowboy hat strapped to his back and Arumi is a girl with tanned skin, pig tails and a simple white dress

they’re families run stores in a “shopping arcade” that unfortunately is about to be tore down, Sasshi’s family place has already been torn down, but Arumi’s grandpa is resisting it and wants to keep his French restaurant open

one day though a fatass cat gets on top of a small pelican statue that used to be one of four animal statures placed at different parts of the arcade, but is now the only one

grandpa tries to knock the cat off, but in the process falls and hurts himself and smash the pelican stature, next thing they know our heroes Sasshi and Arumi find themselves transported to strange worlds, what’s going on?

the series is mostly episodic but has episodes that continue the main story

the worlds Sasshi and Arumi all seem to based on things that Sasshi likes (everything from sci fi, to kung fu movies, to dating games) and parody the genres pretty hilariously, the sci fi episode in particular is a masterpiece, it’s amazing how crazy and fast paced it is, but also how funny it is, I love the 2001 parody

by far though my favorite episode would be the Hollywood episode, it contains about a million American movie references and is funny as hell, it’s hilarious to see these western movies parodied by an anime

by the way, did I mention that almost al of the characters speak with southern accents? yes in the English dub to adapt the Osaka accents they give them the American equivalents which are southern accents, it seems quite weird at first but you quickly realize that voices fit them perfectly

so why is not better known? it’s hilarious, has great characters designs and comes from studio Gainax , I really don’t know, but if you haven’t seen it it’s not too hard to find and is worth buying


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