D-Frag! is about a boy named Kenji Kazama, a delinquent at Fujou Academy. During the first episode, he and his friends Yokoshima and Nagayama encounter the school’s Game Creation Club when they see smoke coming out of their clubroom. After putting out the fire, the three club members (Roka, Chitose, and Sakura) start using their “battle types” to fight against them. By the end of episode one, Roka and the rest of the club get Kenji to agree to become a member of their club; the club needs one more member in order to keep from being closed down.
This episode is basically broken up into two smaller stories. The first story sees Roka, Chitose, Sakura, Kenji, and Takao in the Game Creation Club (Provisional) clubroom. Roka, Chitose, and Sakura are explaining how to play The Scramble for Porn Mags in Space Game to Kenji, because they claim he said he would play it with them to repay them for saving him from the Band of 14 Devils. Chitose gets upset when Kenji acts uninterested.
Roka, meanwhile, invites Takao to play as well. After she refuses, Roka tells Kenji he needs to convince her. Kenji thinks that since the game is a four player game, he’ll get out of it if he gets Takao to agree. At first she refuses, but he says if she agrees, he’ll do anything she says. After striking a deal, Roka informs them the game has evolved and now five players can play; however, Takao tells Kenji she still expects him to fulfill their bargain. When they’re given a choice between two characters to play, they fight over the same one. Roka throws her character Joe into the mix, and begins doing Rock, Paper, and Scissors with them.
This whole scene runs for almost 10 minutes, and by the end of it, I felt two words described it perfectly: lame and stupid. What comedy appeared in it wasn’t terribly funny, and the story just goes nowhere. As I watched, it felt as if the scene was just going on and on and on and on. I was rather bored of the scene by the time it finished, and I was glad to move on to something else. The only other thing I have to say about this is in regards to Roka’s imagining of the characters in the game. Is it just me, or does Joe seem to have been inspired by Cobra from the Space Adventure Cobra franchise?
The second half of the episode sees Kenji starting to get some notoriety in his class due to being part of the group to go up against the Band of 14 Devils. However, his classmates view him as being one of Chitose’s lackeys, which ticks him off. All of a sudden, Roka and Chitose come to his classroom at lunch and insists to have lunch with Kenji. During this scene, it comes out that Kenji’s little sister makes his lunches, and he’s chastised for not acting like a regular delinquent.
During this scene, he tells a story of how he met Mr. Konekone, the Japanese Classics teacher, when he was in elementary school. Kenji, along with Ataru and the other members of the Kazama Party, were saved by Mr. Konekone when they were trapped on the roof of a building that was on fire. Later in the episode, we see how Mr. Konekone looks out for Kenji at school.
The second half of the episode was definitely stronger than the first, although the lead up to the backstory weakens it somewhat. The flashback we see is a nice way to get to know a little more about Kenji, as well as to introduce the audience to another faculty member of the school besides the advisor for the Game Creation Club (Provisional). I suspect Mr. Konekone may end up playing a bigger role in the series as it continues, because I can’t see the writers going to all this effort to build him up and then not use him again.
Is it just me, or has Roka become more annoying with this episode? While I can’t truly say I liked her before this point, I at least found her to be somewhat tolerable. During this episode, though, she was being rather manipulative and acting rather selfishly throughout the episode. Chitose has always rubbed me the wrong way, but now Roka is starting to as well.
This episode also seems to make it pretty clear that Takao has a crush on Kenji. While it can still be a bit debatable when it comes to Roka since she’s not as obvious about it, I can pretty much say without a doubt at this point that I’m right about Takao. At this point, if I had to be a shipper and choose between these two potential couples, I would have to go with Kenji and Takao. If Roka hadn’t acted the way she did in this episode, then I might have been willing to consider the Kenji and Roka pairing a bit more.
Last week, I said that D-Frag! was my least favorite show of the 12 I’m watching this season. Unfortunately, this episode only managed to cement it in this position in my rankings. According to what I’ve seen, it appears that there’s only 12 episodes of D-Frag!; since I’m almost halfway through the series already if this information is accurate, I may as well stick out to the end to see if maybe it might get better before the end.
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