Episode 11 – Miss Kuroitsu from the Monster Development Department

The last two weeks have been strong for Miss Kuroitsu, so I guess I was too optimistic to hope that I could maintain that energy. So here we are, with a week to go, the show features what is probably its most lackluster effort to date. I think the series will continue to be good in general; there’s nothing here that overtly curses the series enough to nullify the fun I’ve had with it (among the other ups and downs) during its run. It’s just an incredibly flat entry that, like some of the other minor episodes in the series, feels like it could have been a winner if they just put a little more effort into it.

Because as usual for Miss Kuroitsu, the potential with the concept is here. This is another one where the focus is more on the corporate culture side of things than tokusatsu riffs, which is fine since mixing things up beyond genre fan service is good (although this episode does it also add some cameos from Astro Fighter Sunred, in a cross-reference, I can’t believe it took them eleven weeks to do it). And as is usual with this show’s commentary on job practices, I can empathize with the goofy set-up: Kuroitsu coming to a retreat that otherwise exclusively includes Agastia’s high-ranking executives, and also bringing poor Wolf. There is nothing as potentially stressful as trying to take a vacation just to have everyone your bosses intimidating all the time, even more so when they’re all literal monsters with superpowers specified to take on spandex-clad soldiers.

So it comes off as kind of a wasted opportunity that Miss Kuroitsu I can’t seem to get much particular comedy out of such a situation. This should have been a perfect opportunity to see more outsized personality antics from several of these executives, many of whom we meet for the first time in this episode. But we barely see them on the loose, and what we get instead are stretches of the characters in relatively low-key reunion situations. Perhaps that in itself is supposed to be the ‘joke’: seeing these elemental incarnations and hulking animal people just chilling in hotel robes. But the series has already worked out the sight of tokusatsu monsters just vibrating into its overall frame, so there’s no fresh humor or entertainment value derived from seeing these weirdos sitting around and playing video games.

It doesn’t help that when the episode looks for more specific comedy setups, it’s from more awkward angles. Yeah, the real reason they’ve brought poor Wolf on this trip is to get bullied again. This time, the perpetrator is Skylla, apparently the predatory lesbian from Agastia’s corporate ladder (who, if a passing comment is to be believed, apparently hooked up with Arachne at some earlier point?). She, ha ha, mistakes Wolf’s gender and targets him for her affection, and also, ha ha, he can’t turn her down due to a combination of his power within the organization and her own pack instincts. subordinate So it happens that we go through several scenes where we anxiously watch Wolf feeling uncomfortable while Skylla harasses him in the bathroom and things like that.

Another problem with all of this is just how harsh this episode looks. Miss Kuroitsu has never exactly been a bystander, but arriving later in production hasn’t done this particular entry any favors. You definitely don’t want your hot springs fan service segments to look at this lower barrel, but with that we are only left with the ill-jointed gag of Wolf’s awkwardness to carry those segments. It spills over into a lot of the other scenes as well, affecting even those stretches of characters just sitting around talking. They are slideshows with almost no animation; the animal characters don’t even move their mouths when they speak, while the faces of the more humanoid members of the organization slowly disintegrate with each change of camera. An episode that wasn’t entertaining to watch might survive if it was at least decent to watch, but failing on both counts pretty well dooms the prospects of this one.

It is not a complete failure. Among all the low-key executive hangouts, there are a few decent jokes, mostly courtesy of Freezing Combat Executive Fleurety, who gets into hilarious bits like the reveal that she mostly just uses his powers to store food. And there’s a bit of a boost in entertainment midway through, courtesy of the appearance of Assassin Rangers Jyuyushi. These guys appear to be a completely fictional Sentai parody aside from any of the real world local heroes that Miss Kuroitsu has appeared, ostensibly so they can immerse themselves as much as the narrative wants. It results in some great digs at what pieces of work these guys are, like how impractical “assassination” is as an aesthetic for colorful kids’ superheroes, or how ineffective they are at it anyway. They even deliver one of the best gags of the episode, with the reveal that they’re piloting a vehicle bought secondhand. wick that doesn’t even match her aesthetic as a result. That’s great for a show like this! But unfortunately, it’s also about as smart as this episode gets, with the rest mostly coming off as an unappealing drag too close to the finish line.


Miss Kuroitsu From the Department of Monster Development is currently streaming on Crunchyroll.

Chris is a freelance writer who appreciates anime, action figures, and additional ancillary art. He can be found up too late posting screenshots on his Twitter.