The Infinite Zenith

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Do You Love Your Mom on the Shore?: Okaa-san Online OVA Review and Reflection

“Mothers hold their children’s hands for a short while, but their hearts forever.” –Unknown

Shirase invites Masato and his party to a private resort on the beach to relax. Here, Mamako attempts to spend more time with Masato, but he declines, feeling it to be embarrassing. Shirase suggests the classic sport of watermelon spitting with a wooden sword, but when Mamako inadvertently causes him to walk into her, he chucks the sword into the ocean in frustration. An unknown entity throws the sword back, knocking him out. The impact induces retrograde amnesia: Masato fails to recognise his party and Mamako, but he vaguely recalls Mamako as being important to him. Mamako decides to spend this time with Masato, who seems more receptive to her. As the evening sets in, Masato wonders if the unusual feeling he has towards Mamako might be love and attempts a kokuhaku, but before they can kiss, a kraken appears and hauls Masato into the sea. This spontaneously causes Masato’s memories to return, and Mamako defeats it. In the aftermath, Masato and the party decide to grill the remains of the kraken for dinner, only for one of the tentacles to combust, hit each of Wise, Medhi, Porta and Mamako on the head and leave them with retrograde amnesia. This is the OVA to Okaa-san Online, an unaired episode that accompanied the BD release back in March.

If memory serves, Okaa-san Online was a series that I found to be rather enjoyable despite its unusual premise. Okaa-san Online is technically an isekai anime, built around the premise of a VR game designed to help parents and their children bond. During its run, Okaa-san Online explored different facets of the parent-child dynamic, concluding in a titanic battle against a powerful but incompetent foe that helps Masato to appreciate everything that Mamako does for him, even if it does border on the embarrassing at times. In the OVA, however, it’s an off-the-books side adventure that provides an opportunity for the characters to bounce off one another. As Shirase is kind enough to inform Masato of, this day at the beach seemingly serves no purpose than to showcase the entire cast in swimsuits, doing the sorts of things most commonly associated with a Japanese style summer break. However, when Masato takes a knock to his cranium and develops amnesia, his dynamic with Mamako shows that even when his memories are lost (temporarily), the strength of the mother-child bond is sufficient so that he vaguely remembers Mamako, giving Mamako a rare chance to dote on Masato in ways that he normally would flat out refuse. In short, the OVA is a fun addition to Okaa-san Online, featuring a space to let the characters interact more freely without the constraints of a longer-term goal that the regular episodes have.

Screenshots and Commentary

  • It feels a little strange to be back, writing shorter posts again; the last five posts I wrote total some thirty-four thousand words, and admittedly, were quite exhausting. I figured that, to ease myself back into things, it would be appropriate to do a shorter post on Okaa-san Online, whose OVA was released back in March along with the BDs. It’s been around nine months since I last wrote for Okaa-san Online, and I figured that since there was an uptick of searches for this series, people might’ve been looking for the OVA.

  • Within its runtime, Okaa-san Online‘s OVA brings back all of the small details that made the TV series so enjoyable to watch, but without a primary objective to work towards, the entire OVA ends up being a chance to have everyone play off one another for comedy’s sake. Last I wrote about Okaa-san Online, one of the points that came up was Porta’s origins: her mother’s never shown on screen, and of everyone, she seems the most untroubled. As it turns out, she’s a special kind of beta tester, although her background remains quite unknown.

  • After Masato offers to help Porta inflate her inner tube, Wise grows jealous and uses a spell that blows Misato’s swimsuit away. To spare him the indigity of wandering around without clothes, Mamako covers him, but creates additional embarrassment. This leads to the question of how this particular VRMMORPG even works, if it’s able to infer one’s physical characteristics: most games simply don’t bother rendering more than they have to in order to reduce the amount of resources loaded into memory.

  • Mamako’s character is very similar to that of Ah! My Goddess‘ Belldandy, and in retrospect, Ai Kayano (Utaha Kasumigaoka of Saekano, Saori Takebe from Girls und Panzer and GochiUsa‘s Mocha Hotо̄) does have similar talents as Kikuko Inoue for voicing matronly characters, alongside a very varied and impressive range of characters. Here, after Masato brushes her off and returns to shore, Mamako wonders about Masato’s sense of embarrassment.

  • Her thoughts are interrupted when Wise, Medhi and Porta splash her, leading them to frolic in the warm waters. Such waters remind me of those of Cancún, whose waters are similarly pleasant to wade into, and possess a beautiful shade of turquoise. Deep blue skies, such as those seen here, are among my chiefest reasons for watching anime: they evoke a sense of contentment that I cannot readily describe, and I have been swayed into picking what anime I check out for a season based on blue skies alone.

  • Suikawari is a longstanding tradition in Japan, resembling the Western version of piñata smashing. The game is, coincidentally, similar to the VR game Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes in that it requires someone to talk to the individual smashing the watermelon in the right direction (in the game, someone looking at a separate screen walks the player using the VR headset through defusing the explosives). Masato gets talked into accepting the suikawari challenge with Mamako as the giver of instructions, and ultimately, he walks into her, failing the challenge.

  • Where Masato is unsuccessful, Shirase uses a knife to cut the watermelon into cleaner slices. One of the things about suikawari is that it tends to leave a bit of a mess, and a cloth is usually laid out so the remains of the watermelon can be eaten. Curiously enough, suika (kanji 西瓜) is rendered as sai1 gwaa1 in jyutping, but broken up into its components, 西’s Hepburn is nishi, and 瓜 is uri. Different contexts change the use of kana and pronunciation of certain kanji, and here is an interesting example of how Cantonese and Japanese share some similarities.

  • When the wooden sword Masato chucks into the sea is returned to him, striking him in the head, Masato is knocked out and awakens with no memory of himself. This is a common enough storytelling element in comedy; having a character forget their sense of self is no joke in reality, but in fiction, can be used to create unusual moments. Okaa-san Online, however, is a VRMMORPG, and as such, such a mechanic doesn’t seem to make much sense, since the characters can sustain harm in-game without physical injury to their bodies in the real world.

  • While the game world of Okaa-san Online is one that leaves many questions, some of the phenomenon can be rationalised as a consequence of the game being in beta form. Here, it is conceivable that taking a hit to the head can shock the brain in the real world into an amnesia-like state. Having said this, I’m typically not a stickler for things like plot holes and the like, and I enjoy filling plot-holes when watching a given work that may feature unexplored events.

  • In the absence of his old memories, Masato consents to participate in several games that Mamako proposes, including Twister. The original game was intended as a game of physical skill and conceived as a party game in 1966 by Reyn Guyer and Charles Foley. The game became a smash hit, but also drew controversy for potentially putting the players in compromising positions; this criticism has been used as a comedic device in anime. Okaa-san Online presents a milder version of this, and nothing particularly questionable happens beyond providing the viewer with a rather scenic view of Mamako.

  • A draw game results from Masato and Mamako playing Twister, after which Mamako decides to go crab hunting next. What happens next is worthy of Nande Koko ni Sensei ga!?, and here, I remark that while the series ran last year during the spring season, I didn’t get around to actually watching it until this March. Having gone through Nande Koko ni Sensei ga!? in full now, I can say that the series provides some laughs, although it offers nothing substantial by way of themes and isn’t exactly a series that one could recommend.

  • Consequently, I don’t think I’ll be writing about Nande Koko ni Sensei ga!? unless there is a particularly strong wish to see what I could do for that series: ordinarily, I am able to include the odd screenshot or two in a post for those moments because it offers a nice change of pacing, but in a series that is built entirely around improbable moments, writing for that could get tiresome very quickly. The equivalent moment in Okaa-san Online occurs when a crab destroys Mamako’s swimsuit, prompting Masato to cover her.

  • Fearing that Masato’s improving relationship with Mamako may threaten their adventures, Wise and Medhi devise a plan to swiftly restore Masato’s memories. However, Masato appears to see right through their ploy, and delivers two devastating blows that leaves Medhi kicking a palm tree in anger, while Wise is left commiserating after his remarks. Having now seen KonoSuba, it’s not lost on me that Okaa-san Online and KonoSuba share similarities in that for both series, male lead winds up with an all-female party.

  • The OVA actually opened here, dropping viewers right into things without creating the proper context and therefore, captures their interest. Masato’s kokuhaku comes as a bit of a surprise, and given his usual personality, invites viewers to delve into the OVA to see what precisely led to such a moment. In the absence of any context, the moment alone seems suited as being a proper kokuhaku, being set under a beautiful sunset on the beach.

  • While Okaa-san Online is no Makoto Shinkai film, its visuals are of a generally high quality, and there are moments, like this sunset, which look stunning. This isn’t too surprising: Okaa-san Online is helmed by J.C. Staff, a studio which has the likes of KonoSuba, Ano Natsu de Matteru, Amanchu!, Flying Witch, Machikado Mazoku and DanMachi in their repertoire, all of which are impressive-looking series.

  • Once the kraken appears and hauls Masato into the water, Shirase reveals that it was her doing: a tentacled monster for a beach episode is apparently an essential. Kraken originate from Nordic folklore, speaking of squid of gargantuan proportion: the legend likely came from sightings of the giant squid (Architeuthis dux), whose preference for deep ocean waters meant that they were rarely sighted. Medhi and Wise are unimpressed with Shirase’s blunt attempt at introducing fanservice in a context where it’s already quite unnecessary to push things further. It becomes apparent here that it was likely the kraken that returned Masato’s wooden sword, irate that Masato had hit it.

  • Initially, the kraken goes after Mamako, but takes Masato instead. In a panic, he calls out to Mamako, and his memories are restored. Mamako subsequently retrieves her swords and defeats the kraken: with the help of Mamako’s top-tier swordsmanship, the kraken is defeated. The kraken of Okaa-san Online is not as tough as J.R.R. Tolkien’s Watcher in the Water; this monster, of unknown origin, was able to keep attacking even when several of its tentacles were severed and ultimately forced the Fellowship of the Ring to take the Mines of Moria.

  • While the OVA might be fun and games, it also sheds a bit more light into Masato’s past: as a child, Masato had been knocked over by a wave, and Mamako had pulled him from the water. In the present, Mamako uses a spell to part the waters and reach Masato in a moment that will immediately bring to mind the Biblical story Exodus, where Moses parts the Red Sea in order to lead the Israelites to safety from pursuing forces.

  • Masato and the others enjoy a grilled squid dinner with the Kraken’s remains. Grilled squid is a common dish in both Taiwan and Japan. In Taiwan, grilled squid is found at night markets, where vendors grill it with light soy sauce and chilies. The Japanese version of the dish, ikayaki, follows a similar recipe with slightly different ingredients, and both are delicious. Admittedly, it is a little surprising the Kraken is edible: if we assume that the Kraken is physiologically similar to a giant squid, the high levels of ammonia in its flesh would render it quite unsafe to eat.

  • To provide some final laughs before the OVA ends, the Kraken tentacle Masato and the others are happily grilling begins to heat up unevenly, and ruptures, propelling it into the air. It outright kills Shirase and knocks out Mamako, Wise, Medhi and Porta. When they come to, each has amnesia, leaving Masato in a bit of a bind. Writing for the Okaa-san Online OVA was fun, being a return to the shorter format, and I will be doing the same for Kandagawa Jet Girls‘ OVA in the near future.

The OVA thus represents a short but enjoyable return to Okaa-san Online, whose story stood out for making an honest effort to use a VRMMORPG in order to convey a specific story about the mother-child dynamics amongst people. As an isekai series, Okaa-san Online is typically light-hearted and easygoing, preferring to use comedy, made possible by being set in a game world, to drive most moments forward. This is something I’ve noticed a trend: my enjoyment of isekai series stems largely from how well the series is able to utilise its setting to communicate a particular message and furthermore, where there is a good reason to have a characters enter an alternate world, in a setting where the real world definitively exists (as opposed to being set in a completely different world outright with no connection to the real world as we know it). In the case of Okaa-san Online, the VRMMORPG world is used to eliminate the space separating Masato and Mamako. While this is typically done for comedy, it also has the tangible effect of helping Masato to appreciate Mamako more, as the two spend time on adventures together with Porta, Wise and Medhi. When I last wrote about Okaa-san Online, the light novels had been ongoing: since then, two more volumes were released, and the series concluded in April. Given that the entire light novel series is done, one wonders if there will be a second season to Okaa-san Online: at the time of writing, I’ve not heard anything that indicates that Masato and Mamako’s adventures will continue in the anime format, but it would be interesting to see where this series would go in a second season if one were to be made.

Okaa-san Online: Whole-Series Review and Reflection

“A mother is she who can take the place of all others but whose place no one else can take.” –Cardinal Meymillod

Masato Ōsuki is a high school student who is not particularly receptive towards Mamako, his mother, and her doting ways. When he is assigned to beta test a new full-immersion game, he grows keen on testing it until learning that not only was Mamako also invited, but starts her journey with stats that render him quite unnecessary in most of the fantasy-themed combat. After recruiting the reliable Porta to manage the party’s inventory and crafting, Mamako and Masato also reluctantly take the sage Wise into their group before being tasked with neutralising Wise’s mother, who decided to use her powers to manifest as a minor god and live in the way she could not in reality. When Masato’s group confronts her, Mamako manages to make her stand down, and helps Wise reconcile with her mother somewhat. Later, Masato, Wise and Porta decide to enroll in a school to earn skill points and a chance at better equipment. They encounter the combat priest Medhi and her overbearing mother – Medhi reveals her dissatisfaction at being made to do everything her mother asks of her: it turns out that Medhi’s mother simply wanted Medhi to be happy and was negatively influenced by one of the in-game items. The two depart on good terms when Medhi’s mother allows her to stay with Masato and the others. The group turns their attention towards dealing with Amante, an abberation in the game whose origins are unknown, but whose intents are to eliminate mothers from the game world. After helping a group of players and their mothers out, Masato and Mamako square off against Amante with Wise, Medhi and Porta, coming on top when Masato reaches the top of the tower that Amante had sought to finish and beat her to making a wish, bringing the threat that Amante posed to an end. This is Okaa-san Online (more formally known as Tsūjou Kōgeki ga Zentai Kōgeki de ni Kai Kōgeki no Okā-san wa Suki Desuka?, or Do You Love Your Mom and Her Two-Hit Multi-Target Attacks?, both of which are titles too long to type), a curiosity of a series whose initial gimmick turned out to hold a much more meaningful and interesting story about the dynamics between children and their mothers.

Okaa-san Online‘s central theme is a very straightforwards – while Masato might be embarrassed to the point of frustration by Mamako’s actions, his experiences in seeing Wise and Medhi’s mothers and their corresponding action also forces him to realise that things could also be a lot worse. Over time, he comes to help mediate these differences, which leads Wise and Medhi to accept their mothers to a greater extent than they had previously, and also helps Masato resist Amante’s intents to wipe his party and bring ruin into their world. For Masato, his journey is accepting what Mamako does for him, and sharing his experiences to help others reach this point. The interactions between children and parents is a topic not often directly covered in anime, usually being a more subtle, secondary aspect. However, Okaa-san Online takes a more open approach to this: by deliberately making Mamako overpowered, Okaa-san Online suggests that parents can trivially solve problems that children struggle to address and show, in particular, that a mother’s skillset is incredibly diverse and varied. Over time, Masato does appreciate Mamako looking after him and his newfound friends, even if he is still dissatisfied with her ability to effortlessly remove all enemies in the game. The parallels to real life can be found quite easily; for instance, I’m not quite so adept at cooking and occasionally butcher something simple like curry by not adding enough water, but my mom’s able to salvage even this without giving it much thought. Of course, experience and persistence allow children to learn, and in time, we become consciously aware of what good parents can do, similarly to what Mamako does for Masato.

Screenshots and Commentary

  • My initial inclination to watch Okaa-san Online was motivated primarily by the fact that Ai Kayano was playing Mamako: I know her best as GochiUsa‘s Mocha Hoto, Girls und Panzer‘s Saori Takebe and Nagi no Asukara‘s Chisaki Hiradaira. In mannerisms, Mamako is most similar to Mocha and Ah! My Goddess‘ Belldandy: kind, attentive and skillful with a wide range of tasks, her only fault is that she still comes across as being air-headed and unaware of the situation Masato finds himself in.

  • The game that Masato and Mamako wind up in is a beta test of a MMORPG designed to help parents and children get closer to one another. The story skates over the technical aspects of how this game works – Masato is simply sucked into his computer at the story’s onset and is quite aware that he is in a game world. I imagine that, were such a game to exist in reality, much market research would need to be done to ensure role balance.

  • For the duration of Okaa-san Online, Masato’s combat is only particularly effective against airborne opponents, while Mamako’s combat prowess have been enhanced to the point where she can do what seems impossible in-game. Her ability to use area-of-effect attacks that instantly eliminate enemy monsters is what lends itself to the series’ title: in Japanese, the series’ full name (通常攻撃が全体攻撃で二回攻撃のお母さんは好きですか?) is twenty-six characters long. The romanised version of this is seventy-three characters in length using Hepburn romanisation and seventy-eight characters if the long vowel sounds are spelt out rather than using macrons. In English, Do You Love Your Mom and Her Two-Hit Multi-Target Attacks? has fifty-nine characters including the question mark.

  • Such a lengthy title would be a nightmare to type out and spell, so for convenience’s sake, I’ve opted to refer to the series by its short name, Okaa-san Online. Once Masato is consigned to his fate as being underpowered compared to Mamako, they begin finding a party. Porta is the first to join: a petite, pink-haired girl with a knack for inventory management and crafting, Mamako immediately takes a liking to her. The team then looks at Wise’s profile. While competent, Wise’s temper leads Masato to turn down her application. It turns out Wise had transformed herself into the application, and proceeds to lay down a physical beating on Masato.

  • Okaa-san Online was initially marked as a promising series after it started, but the second episode had more than one viewer wondering if the series would go down a more degenerate path. It is the case that Masato and Mamako get into some strange situations: they encounter one monster whose attack is a slime that destroys armour, and after a chaotic few moments, Mamako manages to eliminate it. While drawing some ire from viewers, I’ve felt that Masato’s reactions make it very clear that Okaa-san Online will not go in those directions.

  • Masato finds himself embarrassed beyond words when Mamako experiments with different loadouts, including one gear-set that leaves very little to the imagination. I never did get how games justify giving such sets the same defensive properties as full plate armour: in the titles I play, armour looks identical for male and female characters. On the matter of games, this weekend, I took the Ghost Recon: Breakpoint open beta for a whirl after learning about it, but found myself unimpressed overall: there will be no dedicated talk for Breakpoint. A snowfall had also slammed into the area, dropping upwards of 15 cm of snow over the past two days, and while this weekend’s been relaxing (I warmed up with fried chicken yesterday evening and spent much of the day taking it easy), one hopes that there will still be a milder autumn for October.

  • The first major challenge Masato’s party deals with is Wise’s mother, who went rogue after learning of her superior specs in the game world. Masami Shirase, one of the staff members who frequently appears to provide information and support, informs them that Wise’s mother is beginning to disrupt the beta testing itself, and so, the team sets out to stop her. Mamako manages to very nearly single-handedly rectify the situation, creating an opening that Masato uses to finish things off. In the aftermath, Masato and Mamako share a moment of joy at having helped Wise to reconcile somewhat.

  • Medhi’s arc is introduced next: after Masato, Wise and Porta decide to enroll at an academy to gain skill points, they encounter the combat healer Medhi, who is soft-spoken, friendly and also excels at most everything that she does. With a warm smile and shapely figure, Masato develops a minor crush on her and wonders if she’s the heroine of his story, although he quickly realises that Medhi’s got her own set of problems to deal with.

  • Both Medhi’s mother and Mamako mess with their respective offspring’s school life in strange ways: Medhi’s mother stacks the deck so Medhi can demonstrate her superior understanding of the game world to further her power, while Mamako is happy to don the outfits that students wear and blend in with them, to Masato’s embarrassment. Things reach a breaking point during the simulated culture festival: when Masato and the others try to befriend Medhi and encourage her to take her own path, her mother intervenes, leading Medhi to manifest as a dragon rivalling Smaug in destructive capabilities.

  • Mamako and Masato wind up resolving things, and it turns out that the equipment Medhi’s mother was given slowly corrupted her personality, amplifying that which was. Once this staff is destroyed, Medhi’s mother realises that her Tiger Parent approach was ineffectual and decides to immediately deactivate her blog on parenting. While she’d only wanted the best for Medhi, it came at the expense of her well-being. This approach of parenting is supposed to be common in Asian families, known as Kyōiku mama in Japan, and while a high pressure approach increases technical success in life, this has a mental toll on children.

  • Being Asian myself, I consider myself most lucky in that my parents took a more effective approach: they expected me to approach everything I did with a genuine effort, and then the results would be secondary to the effort taken. The end result was that I would find success in most places where I did my best, and where I was met with failure, I would learn to find another way. I therefore argue that the Tiger Parent approach is ineffectual, since it creates the illusion that failure is something that cannot be recovered from. Back in Okaa-san Online, the end result of Masato, Wise and Porta’s time in school is that Porta gets what she came for, while Wise and Masato get screwed by the RNG gods.

  • When it comes to luck in finding cool stuff for games, mine is strictly average, but application of effort, I’ve managed to turn things around in my favour on some occasions to reasonable success. In The Division, for instance, I did manage to acquire a complete Classified Striker’s Battlegear along with The House and Bullfrog thanks to a combination of spending time in the legendary missions and Dark Zone, plus luck with the RNG gods.

  • When informed that there’s a strange situation afoot, Mamako decides to form a guild after learning of what it would take to take a tower and reach the top, where a prize awaits successful players. They learn of one Amante’s plans to eliminate mothers from their world, a rather brazen desire that seems only one step removed from Thanos’ plan to wipe out half the life in the universe. Their initial efforts are met with resistance, as players have allied with Amante. Mamako’s approach towards defusing and understanding the situation results in a group of players who no longer wish to serve Amante.

  • Despite being a formidable villain in terms of raw power, Amante is very quickly reduced to a puddle of tears whenever Medhi comments on how her clumsiness will leave lasting damage on her figure. There is some truth in this: idiosyncrasies in Amante’s character leave her vulnerable to her own shortcomings despite her power, and because of this, audiences are never too sure as to how seriously they should take her.

  • Having helped the male players break free of Amante’s influence, their mothers decide to show up as well to help out. Because their approach is rather unique, the end up casually moving through the dungeons and even stop for a casual lunch break that throws off Amante’s game. The fun and games continue when Amante decides to compete, one-to-one with Mamako, in a range of household tasks like dishwashing and laundry. Mamako handily wipes floor with Amante’s ass owing to her superior experience with common tasks.

  • When a series of traps deprives the characters of their armour and forces them to fight in naught but their undergarmets, only Amante reacts with any degree of embarrassment. Medhi and Wise have both become accustomed to Masato seeing them sans clothes thanks to Mamako’s preference for discussing things in the onsen, and so, exhibit no reaction. Thanks to Masami’s intervention, the others are spared of this fate: ever fond of finessing shirase (知らせる, literally “to inform”) into her sentences as a bad pun on her surname, Masami appears at various points in Okaa-san Online to provide updates. She’s a rather amusing character for this reason, and I’ve become rather fond of how she speaks.

  • If I had to guess, Amante is probably an aberrant boss whose parameters were not finely tuned, allowing her to run wild and create chaos in the game world. Incomplete programming would then account for her contradictory personalities and clumsy nature. Stopping her thus becomes motivated by the need to prevent her from disconnecting or disabling the accounts that the mothers have, which would in turn defeat the purpose of the beta test’s goal of collecting data.

  • When Masato and company reach the top of the tower, they find that Amante’s already neutralised the boss monster here. They begin to engage Amante in combat but find her power overwhelming. In the end, it takes not force of arms, Masato’s recollections to distract Amante, and Mamako’s use of one of her own abilities to fry Amante. Deciding it is pointless to fight on, she runs off to the final section of the tower, where the special wish-granting podium is held. In order to beat Amante to the punch, Masato wishes for fresh eggs, recalling a prediction of Wise’s that ultimately turns it into a self-fulfilling prophecy.

  • I found that all of Okaa-san Online‘s characters were quite likable, and while the stakes were never too high, watching everyone learn and grow with one another made this series fun to watch. Between Wise’s tsundere personality, the adorable air that Porta has and the curious combination that is Medhi, it was entertaining to see how the characters bounce off one another. Okaa-san Online seems to escape the harem genre, as Masato’s mind is only ever really on not being embarrassed, and while he did join the game world with the aim of meeting someone, these thoughts are shelved once he begins learning more about the game.

  • Okaa-san Online was a very pleasant surprise, and earns a B+ grade (8.0 of 10, or 3.0 of 4). Despite being rough or protracted in some areas, as well as having modest visuals, the series does a remarkable job of bringing the characters and their adventures to life. With Okaa-san Online in the books, we now enter October and the fall season. I intend to watch Azure LaneRifle is Beautiful and Kandagawa Jet Girls, as well as write about them in some capacity. As well, I do have plans on watching and writing about Hensuki at some point in the future, and finally, I will be looking to wrap up Blend S soon for the next Terrible Anime Challenge.

Ultimately, despite Okaa-san Online‘s premise being ripe for presenting a certain brand of visual humour (and the first few episodes do in fact do this), Okaa-san Online turned out to be surprisingly enjoyable for its presentation of family dynamics using the isekai setup, a genre which has stagnated somewhat thanks to increasingly derivative stories being told and for a refreshing, honest perspective on parenthood’s challenges. While Okaa-san online may not go into the same level of detail as a parenthood guide or deal with every aspect of parenthood that parents go through, it manages to cover a few details, from parental irresponsibility to the Tiger Parent mindset and present plausible solutions towards these issues. The thematic elements in Okaa-san Online are respectable and solid overall, with the more dramatic moments being well-balanced with the comedy and situational irony. Even though the anime itself is not particularly noteworthy with its animation or art, the story and voice acting does give incentive for one to pick up the series. I would recommend this series to fans of the isekai genre, as well as those who are looking for something unexpected. Finally, while Okaa-san Online‘s anime adaptation may have ended for the present, the source light novel is still ongoing, and the possibility of a continuation will likely be contingent on how well the anime does with respect to sales. This is a fun series to watch, and I could see myself picking up a second season if one were to be made.