On my go-to anime databases, I saw Are You Lost? labeled under “Ecchi” so I assume this show about four girls stranded on a tropical island was going to be filled with fan service. I’d elaborate on what kind of fan service I imagined…but then you’d judge me. Point is, I went into this show with a certain expectation.
There is indeed fan service to be found here, complete with your usual naughty close ups, stripping of clothes, and yuri bait kisses. However, that element surprisingly seems to be playing second fiddle. A key part of Are You Lost? is that one of the girls, Homare Onishima (M.A.O.) actually has experience in surviving in the wild. Therefore, it’s up to her to train the others and help them survive on the island. Her methods, however, are odd to say the least. Just within the first episode, you see her strangle a fish with her shirt so that she can drink its blood, offer to pee on her peers so that they stay hydrated, and gives one of them her saliva and a locust she just ate via mouth to mouth to combat a heat stroke. Needless to say, everyone else in the cast is wondering if the island really is their biggest hurdle to overcome.
I’m no survival expert so I won’t ascertain if any of Homare’s methods are what you’re supposed to do to survive. Instead, I’ll ask myself this question: is any of this stuff entertaining? With content like what I described above, it seems like Are You Lost? is going for gross out humor and the limitation with that is easy to see. Either you find this kind of stuff funny or you’re simply grossed out. I personally have little to no preference when it comes to comedy but I must admit that in this case, I was more perturbed than amused. That said, I must confess that I still laughed a bit if only because the show’s sense of humor is so at odds with its fan service that the synergy or lack therefore merits a laugh or two. That could very well be what the show is going for. I could also be giving it too much credit, however.
Humor aside, I question how long this show will be able to appeal to an an audience. You may have noticed that I didn’t really talk about the other three characters and that’s because I really don’t have much to say about them. Like, you have the athletic one, the shy one, and posh one and that’s about it. I’ll give Homare this: she at least made an impression from the get go. Even so, one character can’t necessarily keep a story afloat and I can easily see this show devolving into a cycle of Homare doing something and everyone else reacting in horror.
I still had some entertainment with Are You Lost? so I’ll at least try one more episode before I really call it quits. As for a recommendation, I’d say if you’re turned off by gross out humor, this anime probably isn’t for you. No matter how I look at it, it just seems like an acquired taste to me.
OP: “Koko wa Doko” by Ahomushi
ED: “Ikiru” by Kiyono Yasuno
Thanks for reading!
Watch Are You Lost? on Crunchyroll