And yet, despite the hundreds of trails by fire that I've endured, never in my life had an anime been so bad that it caused me to physically vomit. That was until that fateful day I saw Sora no Otoshimono.
Tomoki Sakurai is a normal, boring, ordinary high school student. And if anime has taught me anything about Japan, it's that boring, unimpressive, male high school students who barely have a discernible personality, are the most sexually attractive men in the entire known universe.
Of course, none of the girls even seem to care about the resident bishounen. They like their men plain and boring.
So anyway, Tomoki, in all his boringness, has a super hot neighbour who is obviously wet for him. However, like all Japanese high school girls, she doesn't have the balls to just tell him so, and instead expresses her feelings in the form of physical violence.
Later on, as Tomoki is walking around, all boring and main character-like, a totally titilicious girl falls from the sky. Like a meteor. With tits. A titieor.
To cut a short story even shorter, the girl then introduces herself as Icarus, and claims to be a, "pet class angelroid," which seems to entail having her wear a leash, grant Tomoki's every wish and act in a manner so subservient it would probably cause an entire room of feminist to spontaneously combust should they ever have the misfortune to see this.
So with his newly acquired wish granting angel, Tomoki proceeds to...commit a wide range of crimes, including sexual assault, public nudity and genocide. And this is all in the first episode...
The main character. The typical boring high school student who just wants a quiet life. Slightly differentiated from every other harem lead by the fact that instead of being a celibate virgin, he's actually perverted. The only problem being that he's not perverted as in lovable leech pervert, he's perverted as in registered sex offender pervert.
The main female character, and a 'pet class angelroid', whatever the shit that means. Like Tomoki, she too has no real personality, and simply exists in order to shower the viewer with moe and boobs. May possibly be an alien weapon.
Tomoki's childhood friend and neighbour who inexplicably breaks into his house every morning in order to wake him up. Even more mysteriously, she finds Tomoki irresistibly attractive despite his blandness. However, in Japan, one expresses one's love for someone by violently assaulting them.
An upperclassman to Tomoki and Mitsuki and the president of a stupid little club called, 'The New World'. Generally does bizarre things like paragliding off buildings. Is probably a closet otaku...well, not that closet actually.
Another upperclassman, and Sugata's hilariously morally ambiguous friend. Seems to own a private army or something. Has the potential to be the best character in the show, but sadly, doesn't get much screentime compared to the rest.
This is what really surprised me about Sora no Otoshimono; the show is absolutely gorgeous it is. The animation is fluid, and the art is beautiful. Special mention must also be made to the many night scenes, as well as many of the closeups of Icarus; the art reaches eroge level quality.
Sadly, I can't really elaborate about the art, as I have no formal training in animation and can't critically analyse it. I can however say, that it's beautiful, and is easily the strongest feature of Sora no Otoshimono.
Despite how beautiful this show looks, this doesn't change the fact that it's absolutely horrible. The characters are derivative to a level approaching satire, the plot looks like it was conceived by a 5-th grader, and the directing is laughably subpar.
As I had mentioned above, this show is the first and only anime that was so bad, it caused me to physically gag and vomit. If you're curious, this particular travesty occurred in the first episode, which displayed one of the most inept instances of drama in the history of fiction;
Shortly after discovering Icarus, Tomoki learns that she has the ability to grant him his every wish. Naturally, he starts small, by first asking for money. However, this soon spirals out of control, culminating in him turning invisible and stopping time in order to molest and rape women.
After his joy filled romp of sexual deviancy, Tomoki jokingly tells Icarus that he wants to conquer the world. He then wakes the next day to discover that Icarus has destroyed every single human being on the planet, so that he may rule it. This is then played completely seriously as a tragic turn of events. Uh...what? Tomoki you dumb shit! You already knew Icarus was powerful enough to MANIPULATE SPACE AND TIME! WHAT THE SHIT DID YOU THINK WAS GOING TO HAPPEN!?
So anyway, the earth is now a dead planet, and Tomoki in his grief commands Icarus to kill herself. He then changes his mind 3 seconds later, and lunges at Icarus to try prevent her from blowing her brains out, and cries like a little bitch.
Oh, the angst!
Will she do it!? WILL SHE DO IT!?
Nooes! I didn't think you'd try to kill yourself after I ordered you to kill yourself!
Eventually, Tomoki manages to convince Icarus not to kill the shit out of herself, and wishes that this had all been a dream. Lo and behold, the next day, Tomoki wakes up to find out that Icarus had reversed it all and the world is back to normal. And again, he is utterly amazed at her power. Wow, how dumb is this kid?
It reads "Icarus + Master = Fun" I think it was meant to be heartwarming, but I just found it creepy as hell.
Now in writing, I realize that whole sequence doesn't sound quite as horrible as it was. But I must remind, the stupidity that unfolds in those 5 or so minutes are played completely seriously, with naught a hint of acknowledgement at the idiocy or predictability inherent in it. And if anyone is curious, the bit where Tomoki told Icarus to kill herself and then cried like a little bitch when he found out she was actually going to do it was the bit that made me puke out my lunch.
That little bit of drama aside however, Sora no Otoshimono doesn't really offer much except predictable ecchi humour. You know, the type that has been coming out of Japan for the past 20 years. About the only instance of actual creativity in Sora came in episode 2, which featured a flock of flying...panties. No, it wasn't a high point in the history of anime, but at least I didn't see it coming...
It is my dream to show this to Hayao Miyazaki. Mainly because I want to see a grown man cry.
Another thing that drives me crazy is how intensely dislikeble the main character is. At first, I was happy to see he wasn't another hopelessly shy celibate, but seeing a man commit hundreds of sexual offenses with not a care in the world isn't endearing either. Goddammit Japan! Do you have any other male personality types besides 'eternal virgin' and 'serial sex offender'!?
And yet, despite how utterly horrible Sora no Otoshimono is, I can't quite get myself to completely hate it. As mentioned before, this is a beautiful anime to look at. And perhaps more importantly, there have been brief hints that the series may grow into something far more watchable.
The scene where Icarus first falls down from the sky in episode 1 is breathtaking. It is beautifully animated, from the initial explosion, to the falling sky pillars, to Icarus soaring through the night sky. For that brief moment I had forgotten how bad the rest of the show was, and was genuinely enjoying what was unfolding on screen. Similarly, several scenes in the opening suggest that a far more inspired sci-fi epic might be waiting in later episodes.