Junichiro. The man. The myth. Once a genius student, he’s moved on to bigger, brighter things… like writing top-ranked anime blogs and collecting figures.
Having committed to a dubious claim of “YD” – a supposed disorder in which one can only do the things that they honestly yearn to do – Junichiro has decided to live life as an unemployed otaku. Eventually, his sister/roommate tells him that she’s having none of it. It’s time for Junichiro to get a job. Expecting him to push back, she’s gone ahead and gotten him accepted as a teacher at his old highschool.
Surprisingly, it turns out to be not so bad. The students love his offbeat way of connecting with them. He even quickly makes friends with a student aiming to be a voice actress.
When Junichiro is noticed by the chairwoman of a local highschool for gifted students, she sets up a trap to get him fired from his current school and uses the chance to scout him for her own. He takes the challenge and heads off into a whole new world of students to help.
Ultimate Otaku Teacher is actually a pretty charming series.
There’s a lot of eccentricity, especially as Junichiro’s otaku-ism is constantly front and center. Some episodes were just a little weird (such as the great chase through Akihabara). But overall, the focus actually isn’t on quirky humour and anime references. Don’t get me wrong – they’re certainly there. They’re also pretty important to the series.
But there’s also a heavy focus on the ultimate feel-good message of the series – be yourself, and be yourself unapologetically. Junichiro is ridiculous, but he genuinely cares about people and their dreams. Throughout this first part of the series he helps stop bullying, give confidence, and inspire people who are feeling lost and lonely. Sure, sometimes it’s a bit of an “after-school special” tone, but it’s also thoroughly enjoyable. It also tackles some surprisingly mature issues, and I was really impressed with the episodes about Kotarou.
Viewers who are fairly familiar with popular anime and manga (and even games) should be able to recognize several references, which is always a fun little easter egg in any series. Overall, I had a lot of fun, and this is one I might rewatch with someone. It’s always a little refreshing to be reminded, even in entertainment, of how our passions and hobbies should inspire us and inform our choices. It’s nice to see a show about a character who’s out there, and actually owns it.
The voice acting was pretty spot-on, and the upbeat pop openings and endings were cute. I did get a little tired of the intro being played every. Single. Episode. But that’s just a minor detail.
Art & Animation
Ultimate Otaku Teacher is not the most beautifully drawn or animated. There were several times when characters looked like fanart or something. Movements weren’t always super-fluid.
In another series this might have bothered me more, but Ultimate Otaku Teacher makes up for it at least somewhat. The show uses a lot of colour and bright character designs. Even with an occasionally wonky face or simplistic drawing, it’s a lot of fun to watch. It’s also definitely fitting for the series’ pop culture-focus.
I’m a little less thrilled with the boxset than I am with the series itself. The extras are just the usual (trailers, opening, ending). That’s about all there is to be found. I’ve come to appreciate small things such as inserts doubling as posters, but there’s nothing like that here.
I also don’t really find this boxset to be too aesthetically pleasing, but I suppose that’s a matter of taste. For people who really like the series, I think they’ll be happy with the colourful and energetic design. It’s just not quite my cup of tea, especially considering how pretty a lot of the colour combinations in the series were.
Overall, I recommend giving this one a watch!