Netflix’s new animated series is cute, funny, and incredibly relatable considering it’s about a death metal loving red panda.
Aggretsuko concerns the struggles of rule-abiding, down-trodden Retsuko, working in a huge corporate office among other animal friends and foes. Retusko is a single, 25-year-old panda figuring out her life in Tokyo. She takes daily blows from her sexist, bullying boss and dreams of an escape from her terrible work life. The only thing keeping Retsuko going is taking out all her anger at the local karaoke bar, where she screams for her sanity. As well as work Retusko navigates money, friendship and romance at the cost of being a total pushover.
I was so excited to watch Aggretsuko, not only because of the look or story of the show but to see how on earth these would all work together. But they absolutely do. The characters are real modern folks who just happen to be animals. It needs this more surreal element however. Because of the dreary storyline if they weren’t animals, the show might fall flat.
The death metal isn’t quite as prominent in the series as I thought it would be and the intense scenes where Retusko lets loose on the mic don’t have a chance to get too gimmicky. The animation is, above all, Hello Kitty cute, but what makes this show is how relatable the story really is. Watching Retsuko having to drag herself out of bed and slope into work in a fit of depression had me smiling from the get-go.
Though there is plenty of satire in the show, it’s not in your face about it and Retsuko has such a great spirit that it’s hard not to love her, despite the whinging. Each episode is only a quick fifteen minutes, but the pacing is fast and no-nonsense. If you want a show to remind you that it’s a tough world out there, then give Aggretsuko a watch to remind you of the fact you are certainly not alone in your modern-life daily battles.
20 April 2018
2 hrs 33 mins