Unrestrained Power Fantasy Involving 1 Guy, 12 Girls, and 1 Tanuki
Every season there is that one anime that I know I’m not going to like, that it isn’t my genre or there’s an annoying character or idea, and yet there’s something about it that manages to catch my attention and I’m unable to just walk away. After watching 12 episodes of this, I’m convinced that I need to learn to drop shows early on even if there is that small carrot of potential. Conception was that title in the Autumn 2018 season
I’ll admit, I watched this through to the end when other shows were dropped along the way. So it isn’t unwatchable. But that is more because of the sheer weirdness of some of what happens. And I’m not just talking about the premise of Itsuki having to make children with 12 maidens and that changing to 13 before the end in order to save a fantasy world.
Conception does a couple of things right. Things that make viewing a poorly scripted, comedy that relies heavily on innuendo and smut jokes to carry episode, something that still seems to hint at being better than it actually is.
One thing it manages is pacing. Just when the comedy elements or the dating the star maiden parts became a little too much, this anime would dangle the story about the labyrinth and fighting the impurities in front of the viewer. By cycling through the different aspects of the show and making sure they never stayed absent too long, no matter what drew a viewer to the anime, just when they got to a point where they might drop it that part of the story would come back.
The other thing that saved this anime from a complete drop is that despite the premise and the incredibly borderline visuals, Itsuki technically doesn’t actually have sex (on screen) with the maidens (maybe Mana, not sure). It is probably just as well given the age of some of these characters and just how weird that would be for all the maidens to happily get along, but the anime does everything but actual sex and it sure implies intimacy so for some people there will still be more than enough reason to walk away.
However, these minor positives can’t overcome the overwhelming negatives that this series is carrying with it.
Because there are 12/13 girls to be seduced and only 12 episodes, we barely get to meet some of these girls that Itsuki seems to woo some of them in an instant. The few that get a whole episode devoted to them are interesting enough but they essentially get seduced, go through the ‘ritual’, produce a child and then they more or less get forgotten outside of group shots.
There’s a lot of fourth wall breaking ‘comedy’. Some of it is kind of amusing but most of it is the eye-roll worthy kind of humour where the writing seems to think it is more clever than it is. The episode that more or less spoofed ‘The Bachelor’ really was the low point for me though if the humour hits than it might work better for you.
Itsuki himself is about as bland a protagonist as any isekai power fantasy protagonist. Though, he seems even more dense at times. His acceptance of his role, or Mana’s advice, and the way he just plays whatever role is currently assigned means his own personality is pretty much absent for the vast majority of the series. He’s very clearly a blank-slate waiting for self-insert.
But, the worst part of this anime goes straight to Mana as a character. Wow, I don’t know how many times I wished death on her during my episode reviews. She most definitely gets the title for the single worst character and most annoying creature of the entirety of 2018.
All and all, I really regret not dropping this. It wasn’t really a genre I am fond of and the small elements that could have been interesting just didn’t get enough time or development to really deliver. While I won’t say this is the worst anime ever, and it isn’t even my worst anime of 2018, it is an anime that you would have to be a very specific audience to enjoy and for everyone else you’d be better off steering clear.
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CONCEPTION ORE NO KODOMO WO UNDEKURE ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK
- Episode 1 – We Can’t Accuse Them Of Being Subtle Here
- Episode 2 – Star Children and Labyrinths
- Episode 3 – If We Got Rid of the Tanuki This Would Be Better
- Episode 4 – A Touching Story Told Between Lewd Jokes
- Episode 5 + 6 – Controversial Fortunes, Candid Fan Photos and Helping Bakers
- Episode 7 – Exploring Inuendo and Bread at the Festival
- Episode 8 – A Story of Fan Service, Parodies, and Star Children
- Episode 9 – It’s The Joke That Just Keeps On Missing
- Episode 10 – 100 Ways to Remove and Obnoxious Character
- Episode 11 – The Day Itsuki Had Sex With Mana?
- Episode 12 – Bye Bye Conception! And At Last It’s Done