Shimoneta: A Boring World Where the Concept of Dirty Jokes Doesn’t Exist shows us a world where censorship goes too far. And it’s pretty damn hilarious.
In the world of Shimoneta, perverted humour — or anything else deemed sexually perverse — has been banned for years. Pornography has been summarily destroyed and now the entire population of Japan wears collars that report if anyone says anything “naughty.” For artists, it is one step worse: They are forced to wear bracelets that check their hand movements to make sure no lewd images are produced.
Thanks to this, the children of this world have grown up in an environment devoid of even the most minor of sexual content. All they know is that impure things are bad — not that they are even sure what an impure thing would look like.
Enter Okuma, a new student at the high school famous for having the highest “public morals” in all of Japan. As his father was a terrorist — i.e., a person who spoke out against censorship — he has had to work hard to overcome his father’s infamy. Now he hopes to become the pinnacle of moral behaviour.
Unfortunately for him, he soon runs into Kajo, the student council vice president and secretly the perverted terrorist “Blue Snow.” Blackmailed into helping her, Okuma finds himself and Kajo hunted at every turn by student council president Anna — Okuma’s crush and Kajo’s best friend — as they try to teach their fellow students the fun of dirty jokes. Of course, before that, they need to help the students understand what sex is.
The public morals lobbyists in Shimoneta have done their job too well. In an attempt to protect their children and society in general, they have created a world where the children are ignorant of the entire concept of perversion. Sex (or “docking” as they call it to avoid the dirty word) is practically a foreign concept. The high schoolers can’t even understand why someone would want to do it — much less exactly how to do it.
In fact, one student spends the entire run of the series pursuing what she believes to be a radical scientific breakthrough: that “docking” and childbirth are related in some way — though she isn’t sure exactly how. It is as funny as it sounds.
The most extreme example of sexual ignorance in the story is Anna — as her mother is the head lobbyist for public morals and has enlisted her daughter as a co-conspirator in her crusade against the perverse.
To Anna it is simple: Anything perverse is evil; love is pure. The problem is that she is unable to tell the difference between love and lust. So when she finds herself sexually excited by Okuma, she doesn’t know what to do with the feelings and decides that it must be love. And since love is the purest emotion of all, any and every action is permitted in the pursuit of love; stalking, breaking and entering, and sexual assault are perfectly ok (though it’s not likely that she’s capable of understanding the concept of sexual assault with her current upbringing). The hilarity comes from the fact that she has no idea she is doing anything wrong. After all, society has left her completely unprepared for the feelings — among other things — gushing out of her.
While Shimoneta is entirely built around mocking the concept of a world free from “the perverted,” it doesn’t advocate sexual anarchy. The back end of the story focuses on the emergence of another terrorist group. Okuma and Kajo’s group, SOX, seeks to educate and show the harmlessness and joy of sexual jokes specifically and porn in general. Their end goal is a return to the way things used to be.
The group they face is simply a group of panty thieves who get off on sniffing used undergarments. These terrorists are simply acting out according to their sexual kinks and undermining everything SOX is trying to accomplish. Thus SOX is forced to stand against them and show the world that they are different — that when it comes down to it, they are freedom fighters, not perverts.
If anything you have read up to this point sounds funny, then you will likely enjoy Shimoneta. It is brimming with crass humour, dirty puns, and comedic sexual situations that are so over-the-top, you’ll either be completely disgusted or rolling on the floor with laughter.
After all, what else would you expect from an anime that uses its closing credits to teach you how to make a sex toy (read: delicious edible snack) at Japan’s most famous pool.