I’ve been perplexed by the Jimoto ga Japan anime ever since it was announced. Despite not even having put out a single tankobon or collected volume at the time, somehow the series was able to get an anime adaptation and beat out all of the competition in the magazine in the process. I speculated at the time that there was some kind of force at work behind the scenes pushing for an early adaptation, and it turns out that it was the most terrifying force of all – kids’ TV.
The announcement came today that the Jimoto ga Japan anime would be airing in the Ohasuta (Morning Star) TV slot on TV Tokyo. The slot begins at 7:05 AM every weekday and airs many anime series aimed at children, such as Pokémon and Yu-Gi-Oh!, alongside live-action segments that feature various presenters.
As part of a new ‘corner’ within the slot called Kyarasuta (Character Star), Jimoto ga Japan will be airing alongside another manga adaptation, B Rapper’s Street. The new corner will show a different anime or drama every day, meaning that three other announcements are probably on the way.
B Rapper’s Street is a collaboration between publisher Shogakukan and Sony, who will be primarily producing the music for the show’s various rap songs. For Jimoto ga Japan’s anime adaptation, director Ueno Isamu – having just got off of another kids’ show in Good Morning Ninja Team Gatchaman – will be handling the project alongside animation studio ODDJOB, who also worked with him on Gatchaman.
So it seems like we’ve finally solved the mystery of the Jimoto ga Japan anime – TV Tokyo are looking for new shows targeting kids (mainly elementary school students) for their new ‘corner,’ and Jimoto ga Japan has ended up being one of their first choices.
Given that this a show meant for kids, it’s unfortunate that this probably means that anime adaptation won’t be all that spectacular. Director Ueno’s previous project lasted for nearly 500 episodes, sustaining itself on the normal type of light storytelling and heavy focus on gags that are typical of kids’ shows. Production will also probably be limited given the target audience and probable runtime.
That being said, the tale of Jimoto ga Japan is an interesting one. It shows that even an imprint as monolithic as Weekly Shonen Jump isn’t exempt from the maneuvers of TV broadcasting. Furthermore, it puts into stark question the future of the series itself, as it may now be untouchable within Jump itself because of it’s anime adaptation. Only time will tell if that is true, however.