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Nerima Daikon Brothers
Reviewer: Aaron Murphy 01/26/2010

When I first heard about Nerima Daikon Brothers I didn’t know what to think. An anime musical was quite the strange idea and I really had no idea how it would play out, especially when it came to the English dub. Not that I have anything against musicals, I probably enjoy them more than the next guy, but this was certainly out there for an anime series. So it was with a fair bit of trepidation that I started Nerima Daikon Brothers, hoping I wouldn’t have to tear my ears off, and boy was I pleasantly surprised. Especially with regards to the English dub.   
Hideki is a man on a mission, a mission to transform his daikon field into a concert hall for the ages, a place where his band, the Nerima Daikon Brothers, can fully flourish in all their musical glory. His only problem is that he is flat broke and living on nothing but daikons while he, his cousin Mako and brother Ichiro plan for how they can make it rich. Their schemes always seem to revolve around stealing from those who’re evil and have done them wrong, but it never quite works out as well as they would hope. At the end of the day they always end up as broke as they were before, seemingly with more problems than they started out with. But that doesn’t stop them from pursuing their dreams. No matter what they have to do they will build their Nerima Daikon Dome if it’s the last thing they do!
And to that end they are eternally practicing their singing, or so it seems, as just about anything that happens in Nerima Daikon Brothers gets transformed into song. Battles against evil doers? A perfect time to sing about your epic battle. Feeling sad about how poor you are? Sing those blues away! Trying to woo your cousin into sleeping with you? (As Hideki often does in his attempts to court Mako). Then it’s about time for a good ole serenade. This is both a blessing and a curse, as their songs are really well done, catchy, and quite humorous to begin with. It’s after those first 5 or 6 episodes that you start to notice their repertoire of songs is about as shallow as a reflection pool and their changing of a couple words here and there just doesn’t cut it anymore.
This is the exact same problem that befalls the stories in Nerima Daikon Brothers. At the start they are sort of whacky and fun, with our main characters having to do a little ditty in each episode to get the “rental guy” to help them out with a special item before the musical destruction begins. Unfortunately every single episode is almost exactly the same in structure, so as you continue through the series not only are you inundated with the same basic songs but the same basic plot lines as well. Even a zombie Michael Jackson couldn’t save it from getting old.
As with most comedy anime series, the animation isn’t anything to write home about. Which isn’t to say they don’t get creative with what they have to work with, but it’s quite obvious that the budget wasn’t really there, especially since half the scenes in an episode are the same old dance routines repeated with slightly different lyrics. However, the style does fit quite well with the feel of the series, which is almost more important in a comedy series than the quality of the animation itself. What really transformed this series into something special was the expertly done English dub though. Maybe it was because three of my favorite voice actors assumed the leading roles (Chris Patton, Luci Christian and Greg Ayers) or maybe it was due to the hilarious rewrites that often accompanied the songs, but it really was a joy to listen to. Certainly the Japanese voice actors are better at actually singing, but for a comedy series it’s all about the laughs, and the English dub just adds an exponential flair to the hilarity that just wasn’t there otherwise.
I really enjoyed the first half of Nerima Daikon Brothers. It was fun, original, crass (especially in English), and all around a good time. But there was just so much repetition with the same types of songs and plot developments constantly being used that it started to get old. If they could have either made the series shorter or given us more variation between episodes we would have had a real winner on our hands, but unfortunately what we end up with is a great concept squandered by overuse. Still in all, Nerima Daikon Brothers is a very enjoyable series and, if nothing else, you should just watch it till it starts to wear on you and then call it a day.


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Review Title:
Nerima Daikon Brothers
Alternative Titles:
Oroshitate Musical Nerima Daikon Brothers
300 Minutes
General Rating:
3.5 out of 5 stars
Suitable For:
Young Adults
Action, Comedy, Music
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