Schools in Japan must be scary, with all those gangs of girls harassing boys, especially milquetoasty boys like Kyoka Shinomiya, who says he was basically shanghaied into joining the otherwise all-female GJ Club (may stand for "Good Job", but no one seems sure.) The club's President, one Mao Amatsuka, plans various forms of annoyance against Kyoka, and either coordinates her attacks with the other club girls, or just sets the example and lets the others individually torment him.
The club girls here, along with everyone's siblings and (of course) a maid, represent various tried-and-true anime female stereotypes. And yet, for all the similarity of this setup to, say, Haganai and its ilk, this one plays out as if you sanded all the harsh edges off the characters, and severely watered down all the interactions. Typical "harassment" of Kyoka here just consists of things like his having to recite each girl's name 100 times. The VERY worst they actually do to him is the same thing that Motoharu's sister and her roughneck gal-pals did to Motoharu in Daily Lives Of High School Boys, and while the results in THAT show were NOT pretty, in THIS one they actually ARE. This show is so subdued compared to other shows about lone males in otherwise female clubs that you could say it's Haganai if that show had been on a massive dose of Prozac.
Mao herself is the diminutive tsundere type (Taiga, anyone?) While she's constantly looking for ways to annoy Kyoka, she herself has a very low tolerance for annoyance- oh, and she bites, too. HARD. She's pretty consistently unlikable, but not so easy to actually HATE- remember, this show always seems determined to dampen strong emotions- and I have to admit that she actually uses her tiny size in a clever way to get something she wants, though it might be a boon that few high school students besides her WOULD want.
Mao's sister Megumi, who is considerably taller than Mao despite being younger, is a relentlessly sweet-tempered hostess type who worries a lot about her weight; if they'd also given her frizz-prone hair, Hidamari Sketch could sue. Then there's Shion Sumeragi, the genius girl who speaks in a monotone (as all genius girls in anime do) and spends most of her club time playing online chess with grandmasters. (By the way, it sure looked to me like White had TWO kings on one of the boards; if that piece at the bottom of the screen was supposed to be a bishop, it didn't look like it.)
There's also Kirara Berstein (really?), a cat-girl type who typically speaks in sentences no longer than two words, and is always chewing on some kind of meat. While I hated most of the self-referential humor in, say, Chronicles of the Going Home Club, there's a self-referential line here that was kind of fun, because it was so unexpected. I suppose I liked Kirara the best of anyone else in this show simply because she's the closest thing here to the "off-the-wall bizarre comic relief character", though given the show's somnolent manner she's inevitably under-utilized. I'm not sure that she actually has cat ears or not; the show implies it's just her hair that does that. She's an ingénue and, apparently, also super-strong.
And then there are the siblings. Kyoka's own is his kid sister Kasumi, a bro-con type. At one point all the club girls decide that Kyoka has a natural talent for brushing hair (apparently to the point of the brushee being mildly aroused by it; this is the closest the show comes to eroticism.) When sis Kasumi experiences this for herself, she insists on his brushing HER hair too, EVERY NIGHT. At the other end of the spectrum of regard for Kyoka is Mao's youngest sister Seira, a Goth-Loli who is civil enough in the voice most people hear, but the mask she wears on the side of her head seems to view poor Kyoka in a much less favorable light.
Oh, I kind of forgot Tamaki Kannaduki, but that's completely understandable. She joins the club several episodes in- she just APPEARS, really, with almost no backstory- and while she's about Mao's size, she doesn't even have as much personality as Mao; she, along with Kirara's cherubic younger sister Geraldine (who Kirara calls "Jill") seem completely dispensable in a show that's ALREADY pretty low-effort. The character design and music also seem mostly slacker non-efforts. Well, OK, during the period when they're giving each girl her own closing animation, the one with Kirara was kind of cute, but still, overall, the show isn't really a "good job" at all.
Not really offensive, and I usually reserve one-star ratings for shows that actually ARE; but this is DREADFULLY boring. There's so little here to either engage the mind or the emotions. — Allen Moody
Recommended Audience: It is pretty tame for the most part but a lot of the humour is based around Kyouya not understanding his club mates’ barely concealed lust for him. I suspect younger audiences won’t appreciate that part of the show as much.
Version(s) Viewed: crunchyroll.com stream, Japanese with English subtitles
Review Status: Full (12/12)
GJ CLUB © 2013 Dogakobo, NTV, GJ-Bu Committee
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