Once upon a Wednesday evening I had planned to watch the second Mardock Scramble movie, which I had downloaded weeks ago. I was rather impatient and hurried through my anime movie folder to find it. Upon opening it and pressing play I was greeted with a rather shocking sight. Rather than the usual dark lighting and green colouring I had come to expect of Mardock Scramble’s visual style, I was instead assaulted with loud, boisterious, round, colourful, and somewhat penguin visuals.
I guess Minori Scramble is about penguins, or not judging things when you’ve spent your entire life with them, or… something.
The story really is something like that. I promise. The main character girl was raised by penguins and pushed off of a boat into an ocean by penguins, all because her dad likes penguins a lot. As a result of this rather confusing childhood, she somehow hates penguins so her dad makes a magical two-faced penguin in an attempt to convert her into a creeper of a penguin lover like he is. The second face is a little girl’s, to trick her into thinking it’s not really a penguin. She’s a troublesome little thing, and shenanigans ensue, as you would expect from a “troublesome little thing.”
It’s supposed to be cute, and it’s supposed to be funny. But its cuteness is the infantile variety, so unless you happen to like babies I don’t think you’ll be able to appreciate the cuteness a whole lot. And the humour is kind of the same issue. It’s all slapstick humour. You know, people bumping their heads, things getting blown up, conveniently placed props everywhere to make the next exaggerated event happen immediately after the last. That sort of thing. If you’re not into that type of cute or that type of humour, this OVA doesn’t really have a whole lot to offer you. And I’m not just saying that because I went into this expecting Mardock Scramble! I’m serious!
It does try to tear at your heartstrings a bit near the end (though of course that doesn’t work if you weren’t into it to begin with) and it has a silly twist at the end that I like. But you can probably tell from the tone I’ve taken with this review that I wasn’t really fond of it overall. But I know, I know, Minori Scramble has done nothing wrong; it is only because I’m not into that type of cute or that type of humour. Maybe you are. And chances are, if you have kids, this will be their favourite movie ever.
And on the other hand, it does have some pretty great animation. It’s by ufotable and it is not from their Dark Age of pre-Kara no Kyoukai, so great animation is to be expected. The music is also surprisingly good, although it’s somehow extremely forgettable. It works in the OVA, anyway, so that’s pretty cool.
tl;dr Minori Scramble is inappropriate for a physician to prescribe to a patient unless they have one (or more) of the following symptoms: great love of penguins, the liking of babies and/or things that act like babies, or enjoyment of slapstick humour.