Heaven's Memo Pad
Narumi is a strait laced guy disinterest in school life, but after a strange chain of events, ends up with an after school life which is a little bizzare. A classmate introduces him to an odd bunch who hang out around her neighborhood - a group who's job is to have no job, something they take fairly seriously. Most interesting among them is Alice, a shut-in who spends her days on the computer and fancies herself a detective solving social problems.
Narumi becomes more involved with Alice, acting as her assistant and custodian. What kind of cases could this childish girl solve?
As the kind of show I was confident I'd love to death, my indiference suggests I'm dissapointed with Heaven's Memo Pad, even if it's not bad. It's a comfortable watch to pass the time, which is a downgrade from my expectations, but might be worth picking up anyway.
Taking a bullet point list of "what's popular in anime", is one way you'd assemble Heaven's Memo Pad, however features are implemented with a lack of zeal, like someone uninterested in anime, made an anime. That's how it felt at times. Mysteries thrive on intelligence, but Heaven's Memo Pad is nowhere near as clever as it presumes to be.
The show has another problem with its very bland protagonist Narumi. He's intended to be the grounded point of view, but I never found a reason to like him. Alice is the brains behind the operation, and essentially a pandering machine, but a fairly likable one. I didn't quite buy into her taking the "neet detective" thing so seriously. (NEET = Not in Education, Employment, or Training). But I don't want to sound too negative on this anime, because it has good features too.
Stories fair well, and aren't so linear that I figured them out right away. There are occasional brilliant spots, and generally it did well enough to hold my attention. However stories are held back by spanning an one or two episodes too long. Padding time might be more excusable if Heaven's Memo Pad was any good at building suspense, but it's not; which makes much of the anime feel like meandering filler.
What's more interesting about the show are interactions with a local gang. It gives the anime an odd juxtaposition between light heartedness, colored with dark undertones of gang life. It doesn't go hardcore criminal, but resolutions don't always play "by the rules". This anime has all the right tools to go much farther than it does, but is perfectly watchable.
Hitoshi: Everyone is jobless when they're born. They're only later tainted by society.
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