First Impression: 30-sai no Hoken Taiiku

10:00 PM on 04.13.2011 // Jeff Chuang
  @omonomono

If Japanese otaku were to crack a joke on old virgins, this may very well be it. Remember B Gata H Kei? You're about to see the next level of "oh Japan" on the same train of thought, in 30-sai no Hoken Taiiku.

The literal translation for 30-sai no Hoken Taiiku is along the lines of "Health Education for 30-year olds." Originally a guide book with a sense of humor, this anime adaptation takes the same route as you would expect from a "manga's guide to sex for people who's missed out"; probably a good idea if you ever plan to be sexually active. 

But who are we kidding! This is otaku fodder. So it begs the question then: why make an anime out of it? If it is going to make fun of inexperienced, tensed nerds toiling away their hard-earned salary in various sex goods, who's going to be left to watch (or even buy) this anime? Click on and find out!

ED

The story beings minutes before midnight. Our socially and generally inept salaryman protagonist Imagawa is about to turn 30 years old. In front of him is some kind of censored animal, but really, it's just a dutch wife in doggy style. What was he trying to do?

Live demo!

As much as he tries, suddenly a naked man appears next to him, and from there the story goes to hell. More relevantly, the suddenly-appearing man is some kind of god, sent to help Imagawa to end his virginity crisis. Unsurprisingly, this god character is unrelentingly annoying, and eventually offers his own butt as a way to accomplish his mission. Naturally Imagawa rejects. It's hard to blame him when god's butt has the suction of an depressurized jetliner cabin cruising at 30,000 feet.

That's a butt!

At this point you should know that 30-sai is a series of skits, and each episode lasts about 12 minutes, or half of the length of a normal TV episode of anime. The jokes and punchlines fly pretty quickly as a result, and we get a ton of on-screen text and, uh, symbolic representation of certain sexual-related things. The gags are both audio and visual.

Wikipedia doesn't look like this, must've not donated enough

That leads into the biggest problem anyone watching the TV broadcast of the show--the censoring is beyond excessive. It's so bad, even text and certain words in the dialog got beeped out (albeit with some creativity). And then we have some borderline-unnecessary censoring that is almost comical, if not for the fact that almost everything funny got censored. They went as far as censoring the title of one of the segment!

I want magical floating Es!

Well, I guess as long as those nipples are covered, breasts are okay?

We did get a glimpse of the show's female lead character this week, but mostly just a cameo. We do learn that Imagawa lives in dorms provided by the company, aptly named "Cherry System." It's at least an honest piece of social criticism for the lifestyle of post-bubble Japanese salaryman.

Kaori Nazuka!

It's a duck

However, if you're just on board 30-sai for giggles, I'm afraid you will have to wait for a home video release, since I can hardly recommend a show where about two thirds of the gags are censored. If you want to take 30-sai seriously, well, you may have bigger problems to deal with than TV censorship of naughty jokes.

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Jeff Chuang, Associate Editor
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Yet to be the oldest kid on the block, this East Coast implant writes cryptic things about JP folklore, the industry or dirty moe. Attend cons and lives the "I can buy Aniplex releases" life. ... more   |   staff directory

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