My bias for weird things — be it books or shows — led me to this one: Arakawa Under the Bridge. As the title suggests, it’s set under a bridge — a really large and self-efficient one at that. If living under a bridge is as fun as this show portrays, I wouldn’t mind living under one at all.
Ichinomiya Kou — a filthy rich bastard — grew up with only one mantra in mind: never be indebted to anyone. If it is unavoidable, be sure to repay that debt. The instant he doesn’t do so, he starts to have an asthma attack. Quite pathetic, yes. Life would’ve been easy for him if not for some youngsters who took his pants (yes, his pants) and hung them up the bridge. In an attempt to rescue his pants, he meets Nino, a strange yellow-haired girl with blue eyes who claims that she is a Venusian, fishing by the bridge. After a long-ish conversation, Kou falls into the water. Nino rescues him and, voila, the first debt of his life. Eager to repay his debt, he asks what Nino wants. Surprise, surprise. Nino asks him to be his lover.
This series is just weird. It’s funny and weird. I love Nino and her awkward relationship with Kou (who is later renamed ‘Ric’ by their kappa village chief). And I love it how Ric has no idea on how to handle a relationship. It’s funny how Nino expresses her ‘sweetness’ by shoving a live fish into Ric’s mouth. Don’t you think that’s just the epitome of Venusian love? I also love how the bridge is like a totally different universe — they have a farm, a barn, a church, Ric’s school, and the river, which never seems to run out of fish. They hold festivals, marathons and talent contest just for the heck of it. The residents are just loony and complex, it’s unpredictable. I swear, if living under a bridge was this fun, I’d stay there forever.
It’s more episodic than plot-driven so I guess the confusing ending for both seasons (it has two, if I failed to mention) is excusable. And besides, its weirdness makes up for everything — it makes you feel weird yourself. Well, at least I did. Take Arakawa Under the Bridge for your daily dose of weird fun.
(Banzai to http://www.seaslugteam.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/2010-04-bridge.jpg?27082 for the photo.)