Anime is frequently lauded for it’s overarching stories and quality 2D animation. gdgd fairies has none of these things, but I think that it’s still worth a look. gdgd fairies is a strange little series of comedy shorts (14 min episodes) created using the MMD (Miku Miku Dance) software. It features the life and adventures of three fairies, pkpk (Piku), shrshr (Shiru), and krkr (Koro). My review does mention some of the events of the show, but as it’s a sketch comedy, I don’t think these qualify as plot spoilers. Use your own discretion! This review discusses both seasons of the show, as they’re fairly similar in content.
There’s three distinct sections in the episodes. One where the fairies sit around and discuss everyday life with an absurd twist, one where they go into the room of spirit and time and play games, and another called the dubbing lake where the fairies come up with interpretations or dialogue for a scene. The second season introduces a few extra characters, but the format stays very similar, and these characters are mainly incidental.
Have you ever wanted to see fairies create a time paradox, hold a bungee jumping scavenger hunt, or build a candy house out of Japanese sweets? Maybe not before, but you would have a chance to see them in gdgd fairies.
The dubbing lake is interesting as the voice actresses totally ad-lib in this section, they have a short animation played for them which is previously unseen and try to come up with what could be happening. At times they break character or break the fourth wall, but they always seem to be having fun.
Also worth mentioning are the episode previews, which actually have nothing to do with future episodes, but instead are parodies of other well known anime series.
The humour is a mixture of puns, references, slapstick, and some downright absurd situations. The characters work well together to create the funny moments. Piku is very earnest and at times gullible, Shiru is a tease and can be over the top, and Koro has a very dry sense of humour and can say totally absurd things with a straight face.
The CG is very basic, but I think that it’s effective for this show, and the slightly absurd designs of some of the incidental characters can add to the humour. Polished animation this is not, but the fairies’ faces are suitably expressive and I think that stunning visuals aren’t necessary for this kind of show. Some of the ED animations in the second season were winning contest submissions and created by fans of the show, and these were quite skillful. It turns out you can do quite a bit with MMD.
I thought that this was a very quirky and funny series and found myself laughing uncontrollably in places. While I don’t know if it’s for everyone, I’d definitely recommend fans of comedy checking out an episode to see if it’s to their taste.