Anime Taste Testing: Spy Classroom and The Ice Guy and His Cool Female Colleague

You know what they say – prepare for the worst, hope for the best. In that sense, I was not at all disappointed by one of these, while the other was a mildly pleasant surprise.

The Ice Guy and His Cool Female Colleague / Koori Zokusei Danshi to Cool na Douryou Joshi

I’ll get the negatives out of the way first. If you’re looking for something original or innovative, you probably won’t find it in Ice Guy. In fact, supernatural setting aside, this is about as conventional as it gets, at least in some respects. Sweet and entirely inoffensive but also predictable and fairly one-note, I suspect Ice Guy will end up being way too slow for many people’s liking, especially since at its core, there’s really only a single main joke to carry the comedy part of this show, and that was already getting a bit stale by the end of the first episode.

Even so, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t considerably charmed by this premiere. For one thing, not high school, so yay – adult/office stories in anime for the win! For another, I actually found it pretty refreshing that the usual male/female roles were swapped around here – romance anime tends to make the girl the overly emotional/flustered one and the guy the cool stoic one, but Ice Guy has the opposite dynamic, at least when it comes to the characters’ outward personalities. Last but certainly not least, there’s the aforementioned supernatural element, with the best part of this by far being how completely unfazed people are about at least two of their coworkers being descendants of youkai. This is precisely not the kind of series that goes for pointlessly loud and dramatic, so reactions are more along the lines of a delightfully understated, “Oh, wait, so your mom was a Yuki-onna? Yeah, makes sense, that’s cool.”

I’m not necessarily saying that Ice Guy has a lot of staying power given its lack of creativity or impact, especially in the comedy department (which is kindof important for something that’s meant to be a rom-com), but if you’re up for a pleasant slice-of-life where everybody’s genuinely nice – kind of like Horimiya but with an office fantasy setting – and zero fanservice to ruin the cuteness, then Ice Guy will likely be right up your alley.

Score: 7/10

Spy Classroom / Spy Kyoushitsu

I’ll be frank, I hated this. Everything from the underbust schoolgirl/Lolita maid-inspired uniforms to the way every character has about One Defining Quality, be it an eyepatch or a thigh-high split skirt or big breasts, practically screams “I don’t know how to write so I’m hoping these cute girls will be enough to appeal to my main of audience of horny older men.” You know what I’m talking about – half the girls are purposefully drawn so that even if they’re supposed to be 18 or whatever, they look young enough to potentially pass as elementary school students, while the other half are drawn with super obvious “adult” sex appeal for backup. All of them are shown in the bath in this first episode. Twice.

And yes, unfortunately, the writing really does suck. All the spy stuff is dumb and illogical, to the point where the mystery aspect of the series feels more like an almost completely random series of events that the characters then explain to each other (and by extension, the audience) in excruciating detail, desperately hoping to sound smart and “one step ahead” at all times. I wasn’t offended, just hella bored. If you’re here for the harem dynamics, don’t let me stop you – just know what you’ll be getting before going in.

Score: 3/10

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5 thoughts on “Anime Taste Testing: Spy Classroom and The Ice Guy and His Cool Female Colleague

  1. Spy Classroom… It’s got the sort of fanservice I dislike, but that’s also easy for me to ignore. The problem is, once you ignore the fanservice there’s precious little left. I doubt I’ll watch this, though I still might if it airs on a slow day. In this, as a fanservice show it beats the ones where the main characters turn into a girl or a dog respectively. I can enjoy fanservice on occosion, but the current trend doesn’t seem to go my way.

    Ice Guy… I saw the PV before that (one of the few I checked out) and wasn’t convinced. Luckily, the episode itself was just perfectly calm and fun to watch. I have to say, it may be a gimmick, but I love the way he emotes with little snowmen. In shows like this, I find the humour less of a draw and more of a re-assuring baseline. It’s not particularly funny, but it’s also not… “presented on a stage”. It’s more the way the show presents itself. It’s a good show to relax to, so far, and I expect it to remain that way.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, that’s the thing. I could ignore the fanservice, sure, but after that, the anime doesn’t have a lot left to it.

      Ice Guy is sweet and relaxing, for sure. It won’t be the strongest of the season but hopefully a nice weekly breather to just… er, chill out to.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, Spy Classroom strikes me as very one-note even in the fanservice regard. I won’t judge people if it’s the kind of thing they happen to like, but the anime’s lack of imagination is pretty egregious.

      Liked by 1 person

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