An Excellent series
Archmage Ryokosha | 11/02/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Story wise the genre "Happy Lesson" is based in, is nothing new that is true. The story is of course similar with the idea of one lonely `loser guy' suddenly finding himself living with many beautiful women. As has been mentioned this can be found in many other anime, but "Happy Lesson" does have a different take in this genre.
In fact, "Happy Lesson" excels by having a different take in this genre. It successfully gives a nice twist of having most of the girls both older then the main character while being both his "mothers" and his teachers. So unlike many of the other anime in this genre most of the women are out of the main characters reach in reality and the story does not so much revolve around who he will end up with as the others in this genre do tend to focus upon.
Overall, the story is fast paced and funny, and does build to a nice ending, it is one not to be missed if you are a fan of the harem anime, or someone just looking for a very light and funny anime series."
The Anime Adict | St. Cloud Mn USA | 09/30/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Happy Lesson is a story about Chitose, an orphan who inherits his parents huge house and quickly finds himself with five completely insane mothers, who are also his high school teachers. In his own words, his life is over. You have the childish and playful art teacher mom, the does she even have a brain bear woman gym teacher mom, the overly traditional Japanese priestess school nurse mom, the mad scientist, did I mention mad, science teacher mom and the study till you drop home room mom. Add to that his rock star older sister and sweet little sister, and the class president with a big crush and you get the picture.
Before I actually start let me say you can wipe any and all perverted thoughts from your head. Each mom, though completely obsessed and insane, keep a firm mother son relationship with Chitose. There is your typical hot springs peep show episode but other then that it is mostly clean, not one hundred percent though. The plot is basically about the day to day life of Chitose and his insane mother and sisters. Most episodes gives one of the mothers or his sisters the center stage explaining why exactly she part is his life and/or her background as well as take them to different locals. From the mountains to a deserted island. The fact that all of them beside Chitose and the class pres. are insane means plenty of side splitting humor. Yes side splitting, one episode I literally had to pause the show to get myself to calm down. Outside the humor there are a few generally touching parts of the series.
The music is light and whimsical. The animation is top notch and zainy as only true Japanese anime can be. The story though thin is interesting. Make no mistake this is a comedy, there is naughty stuff, no philosophy, not thought prevoking stuff. You pop this show in sit back and enjoy, try not laugh to hard, that simple. I highly recommend this series to anyone that just wants a good time."
Gabbi White | Chicago, IL | 10/12/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Well I first came across this anime in my anime club and I had to watch the rest of it. Many people have told you what it was about. So I am just going to give you a reference Tenchi. This anine reminded me of Tenchi Muyo. Exccept Cheetose has a backbone. Make Tenchi a high school student, make his harem his teachers and the animes can be very similiar. In fact, I had a friend watch this animne who was a huge Tenchi fan and he loved it. If you like a really funny anime, add this one to your collection."
A decent series, a poor release
Jason C. Ditz | Saginaw, MI United States | 01/22/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"There are two different things I'd like to comment on, Happy Lesson the anime and Happy Lesson as it was released by ADV.
The anime is perfectly serviceable, but nothing more. The characters come in two flavors: one dimensional caricatures with a single personality trait, and vanilla characters with absolutely no personality. The idea of a shinto priestess school nurse trying to exorcise the bad luck from the hapless main character is great, and I quite enjoyed it the first time, when Urusei Yatsura did it. The second time around wasn't nearly so much fun, and its not hard to understand why: Yayoi-sensei is no Sakura, and Chitose is no Ataru Moroboshi. Most of the enjoyment derived from the story comes in spotting which more famous and more interesting character was reimagined for the show, and which generic misadventure Chitose is going to find himself in next. I'd like to think these were homages done for the sake of parody, but more often than not they come off as flagrant ripoffs done by writers trying to meet a deadline by replacing story with formula.
The only place the anime really shines is in the animation itself. The changes of animation style really work nicely to move the story along, and while its maybe not the most beautiful anime in the world, they certain managed to make the girls look interesting, if nothing else. In fact at times I wonder if they made this show on some sort of bet: to see if they could produce a passable character driven drama anime with no interesting characters to drive the story along. The answer is yes, but just barely.
As for the ADV release, the "Teachers' Pet Collection", that's not so good. The English Language voice acting, though surprisingly available in 5.1 surround sound, is positively atrocious. Seriously, guys... this isn't 1990, and anime isn't some rare thing you see on the Sci-Fi Channel at 4 AM on Saturday anymore. The voice actors/actresses are in many cases totally out of character, which is hard to imagine given the over-the-top one trait personalities most of the mamas have. I don't know how you could mess up generic female gym teacher, but by God, they found a way. Even worse than that though, is the way they butcher names.
I mean, its painfully obvious the voice talent, and whoever was in charge of managing them, didn't watch a single episode in the original Japanese (and perhaps had never been exposed to anything in the Japanese language in their entire life). When you can't even pronounce the name of the series' main character right, you might as well hang it up. Chitose is not even that hard a name to pronounce, how they decided to call him Cheetos I'll never know.
The English language version is totally unwatchable because of this, so I'd recommend reverting to the Japanese. The downside to this is, while the Japanese voice talent is much, much better, the audio track is in basic 2.0 only, no surround sound here. Moreover, the menu offers no way to select the Japanese audio track without also selecting the English subtitle track. You can, of course, turn off the subtitles after the show starts, but that barebones menu system is just emblematic to what is ultimately a very substandard release.
Even the subtitles feel tacked on, you get the gist of what is being said most of the time, but sometimes it felt like the story was being altered to more closely agree with the English language version. Moreover, sometimes, like the chanting by the priestess in the aforementioned purification episode, they decide not to even bother and try to subtitle it, and just leave you wondering. I guess the best thing you could say about the subtitles is that they're in coherent English, which is the only indication from the quality of the menus that this is an official release and not, in fact, a Hong Kong bootleg compiled from fansubs somebody grabbed off peer to peer."