I give this short but cute anime...a 56/100.
Sometimes, when reality is too much for us, we want to watch something that'll take us away from it for a while, whether its funny comedy or cute antics of cute characters. Cartoons have been an escape from reality since its first inception. But sometimes, this isn't always a good thing. I personally like serious stories, but even I like something short and sweet once in a while. One such short and sweet anime is the recent Miss Monochrome anime series that's recently taken Japan by storm. What's this? An idol anime that's not ridiculously stupid or melodramatic? Awesome! Buuuuut all of the episodes are four minutes long, and there's a lot in this anime that really doesn't make sense, so I'm not gonna lie, it is VERY flawed.
An android named Miss Monochrome has lived on Earth for years and years. When a stupid girl named Mana steals all of her money, Miss Monochrome is left penniless, living in a rundown apartment (how she's able to live there and pay any kind of rent or mortgage is never explained) with no means to support herself. She does have two things: her portable vacuum cleaner and a dream to become an idol like a woman named Kikuko. When she befriends a convenience store manager, who she's convinced is an idol manager simply because he has manager on his tag, she strives to stand out and be an idol like Kikuko. But the journey to become a singer is hard work.
Since the anime itself is extremely short in its duration and episode length, there isn't really much to talk about. The animation looks quite good and it does its job well, but for the most part, it isn't really noteworthy. All the girls are drawn in cute moe style, the movements are reasonably fluid but not enough to make hardcore animation fans gush over it, and oddly enough, the CGI in the ending is actually really good! Normally, CGI is really bad or doesn't blend well with the 2D animation. There's no CGI in the actual show, so it doesn't have that problem, but the CGI in the ending theme is reasonably fluid, it doesn't look stiff or creepy, and since Monochrome is an android, it does a good job in keeping her uncanny valley appearance without going into uncanny valley territory itself. The music is...not much to write about. Sweet piano pieces are in abundance, Kikuko's music is bland, and I don't even remember the rest of it.
For the most part, every single character is bland. Monochrome's a robotic android, Kikuko is the sweet cutesy idol whom everyone loves, Maneo is the hapless doormat who does everything he can for Miss Monochrome even when he's not obligated to, and Mana...she's easily the worst character, namely because she gets away with grand embezzlement, never gets arrested, and NOBODY calls her out on it! They even go as far as to say she's helpful and sweet even when her intentions are as obvious as a pink dress in an all-black wardrobe! But other than Mana, none of the characters are bad. The short run-time of four minutes doesn't give them time to really do much.
But bland characters and lack of a compelling storyline aren't the worst of the show's problems. There are some elements that it introduces out of bloody nowhere that don't really have an effect on the show whatsoever, such as a group of aliens destroying Earth, allowing it to repopulate, then making plans to destroy it again. Sorry, but these aliens add nothing to the story, nor do they have a reason to be there in the first place other than to show how inhuman Miss Monochrome is. There's also the fact that Ru-chan, Miss Monochrome's pet portable vacuum cleaner thingy, dies at one point in an early episode, in a way that can easily be fixed, but Monochrome acts as though its the worst thing ever...and then he's brought back in the next episode without a second thought! Consistency, people! It's not that hard!
All in all, it's nothing great, but if you want something sweet to tide you over, feel free to watch Miss Monochrome. It's a cute show with little substance, but at least it tries.