I have been wondering for a while why people tend to enjoy shows that are either have a ridiculous premise or ones that it can be considered as “so bad it’s good.” While I have shared my thoughts about bad anime, I wonder what qualities make a show so bad it’s good.
So what makes a show so bad it’s good? This is a strange classification since shows that are considered bad are mostly because it has too many flaws in several areas such as story telling, music, production values, character development, etc. which usually negatively affects the show’s enjoyment. Sure, a show can have a number of flaws regardless of how bad or good a show is, but it is mostly subjective since people will have different tastes that will determine how he or she perceives the show and the flaws after watching all the episodes.
While it is understandable that “so bad It’s horrible” usually entails that a show is fundamentally flawed that it becomes painful to watch, the “so bad it’s good” is the opposite. It basically means that the show is so bad and flawed that it magically becomes an enjoyable experience for how bad or ludicrous it is. This makes you wonder, is this reason people enjoy watching bad anime despite having terrible production values and/or ridiculous plot that makes little sense? Definitely since it has an appeal for being unconventional that you cannot keep your eyes off it and stop liking it, thus possibly becoming a guilty pleasure.
For me, I have watched some of these shows that can be considered so bad it’s good, so I may as well share some thoughts on a few of them since there are different qualities that make a show “so bad it’s good.”
Milky Holmes – When I initially watched this, I thought it would be a detective show with cute girls using their powers called “toys” to solve mysteries and defeat the gentlemen thieves, namely Arsene. Instead, it became a strange comedy series as the girls in Milky Holmes manages to lose all their powers, thus becoming completely useless to the point where they almost got expelled.
While I had mixed feelings at first, the second episode simply pulled me in. Sure, the show in general had mediocre production values with a story does not made little sense, but the hilariousness from Milky Holmes’s (and even the Gentlemen thieves’) incompetence and idiocy along with Kokoro bragging about her education credentials at Harvard University made the show very enjoyable to watch in the end.
While the second season maintain the same qualities of the prequel, the third tried to make the show less bad, but of course it caused backlash since it is apparently not as enjoyable as the first two seasons. In short, they went back to the status quo with the fourth season.
Shining Hearts ~ Happiness of Bread~ – Sometimes, there are anime adaptations not being faithful to the source material, especially when it comes to ones based on video games. This show takes the cake since it is funny in an odd way. Sure, the only redeeming aspect of the show is the production values and Tony Tanka’s character designs, but the story is all kinds of bad since nothing happens.
The show focuses mostly on Rick and his three female companions, Amil, Neris and Airy making bread and delivering to various people around the island. This makes you wonder if the bread is filled with drugs since you cannot stop thinking about bread. Sure, the story has absolutely no substance whatsoever while having quite a rushed ending in the final two episodes, I cannot take my eyes of it because of the girls, especially Xiao-Mei, who is a cute cat girl. It seems like the bread already pulled me in already.
Ore Twintail ni Narimasu – Sure, the premise is probably the most ridiculous thing that has seen so far even if the production values are somewhat poor in some instances, which is what makes it very entertaining. This show is basically a parody of Akibaranger, a live action parody of Super Sentai, except involves a male character who is a twin tail enthusiast that becomes a hero by using a trinket to transform into an armor clad little girl with twin tails who fights alongside of two other girls that also sport twintails. Their mission, fight against space creatures who want to take away twin tails because that affinity is so powerful.
Sure, it had some questionable moments in regards to quality along with some instances of poorly done animation (probably the worst I have seen thus far), but the fights and the fact that Souji transforms into a girl when he uses the Tail Gear is what makes the show very enjoyable to watch. Then again, who does not like twin tails? They are ten times better than ponytails most of the time.
Ore no Imouto Finale – It is sad that the second season did not live up to the first season for obvious reasons, but the three episode finale simply took the cake of being so bad that it becomes entertaining. Sure, I did not like how Kirino won instead of Kuroneko or even Ayase, but Kyousuke’s decent of going down the taboo path of incest is funny to watch. However the scene before he “unofficially” marries his little sister was the defining moment of the three-episode finale. Yes, it is the catfight between Kirino and Manami where they duke it out to see who wins his heart. It is just satisfying to see Manami try to beat the living crap out of Kirino, who is apparently disliked by many. Too bad she ultimately loses, which is such a shame, but it is one of the catfights that most people will remember the show by.
Although it is hard to describe what makes a show so bad it’s good since it will differ for every show and it is mostly subjective, it is apparent with the flaws that make it that way. Does the flaw or something (such as a scene or premise) that supposed to make a show bad or mediocre make it surprisingly enjoyable to watch? If so, it is one of these shows. Sure, the show may have a great number of flaws or have a degree of ridiculousness, but these are they very things that draw people to watch it regardless of the quality.
With that, what are your favorite shows that you can consider “so bad it’s good?” Feel free to share them and your thoughts about them. ¶