A Review of Mob Psycho 100 (2016) Season 1

A Review of Mob Psycho 100 (2016) Season 1

Daniel Sokolski, Staff Writer

Mob Psycho 100 (2016) is an anime adaptation created by Bones Incorporated, a Japanese animation studio that helped adapt many manga series to television such as Full Metal Alchemist, Ouran Highschool Host Club, and My Hero Academia.

Mob Psycho follows Shigeo Kagayama, an inherently gifted elementary school student who is part of a family of powerful psychics. Shigeo works for a sleazy (and super comical) scam dealer who pretends to be his psychic master in order to run an exorcism business while paying him below minimum wage.

Shigeo must suppress his emotions in order to not lose control of his powerful psychic abilities, and as a result, he is a very quiet and introverted individual who hates his overreliance on his psychic abilities and wishes to become a more well rounded individual.

Shigeo also has an older brother, Ritsu, who is the exact opposite of Shigeo. He is extremely well liked, student council president, very confident, athletic, and top of his class. Although through his hard work and dedication he has become a very successful individual, he lacks the physic abilities which has always put him in the shadow of Shigeo.

The first season centers around this familial conflict between Shigeo and Ritsu as each person longs to have what the other excels at, and through an extremely dark turn halfway through the season, what otherwise would have been a lighthearted and hilarious sitcom, keeps the audience engaged by gradually raising the stakes between the two brothers, with an imminent battle between the two of them looming over it all.

This brings me to my main point that Mob Physco does an excellent job of not only fleshing out its characters in such a short amount of time (12 episodes, each only 20 minutes in length), but it also manages to create high stakes.

Shigeo’s emotional state is represented by an ominous blank screen which only displays a percentage from 0 – 100%. Until around the 4th episode the purpose of this counter isn’t known until we see the devastating consequences of what happens when Shigeo’s emotions get the better of him. Such a simple mechanic goes a long way in keeping the audience engaged.

The final thing I’d love to touch upon is the animation. It is absolutely gorgeous. Not only does it look amazing, but the artstyle changes and serves a specific function within the series itself. Without giving too much away, the way the different characters are drawn changes depending on the perspective of the character seeing them. And although sometimes jarring and unpleasant to the eye, it really works wonderfully with the humor of the series.

Overall, Mob Psycho 100 is an excellent mix of lighthearted comedy, heartracing drama, all wrapped into a wonderful art style that is free flowing and serves to push the story forward. I would recommend this series to anyone who is looking to get into anime, but doesn’t want to sit through the sometimes 40 episode long seasons of a classic of Death Note while not sacrificing the character development for how easily digestible a series can be.