While I am super happy to have Laid-Back Camp back in the seasonal lineup, I don’t know if I’ll be blogging this little spin-off, Room Camp, in Episode Reviews. On one hand, I’d get to blog about Laid-Back Camp again. On the other, we’re dealing with three minutes per episode so how much can one really discuss in a blog post? This and Shoujo Conte All Starlight are the first short-form spin-offs where I’ve run into this issue (the latter also had the misfortune of not being simulcasted in English). I don’t mind writing super short when that comes to be the case but it is usually something I stray away from. I guess it’ll depend on the next couple of episodes and also what you lot might think.
Regardless, we have more Laid-Back Camp and that’s great as far as I’m concerned. I love the first season so much (one of my Top 3 favorite anime of 2018) and it warmed my heart when it was announced that we’ll be getting this short series, a second season, and a movie. Obviously, Season 2 appeals to me the most but I do approve the idea of spinning the Room Camp segments off into its own show. They were appropriately brief, charming, and they capitalized on my favorite running gag in the show: the Outdoor Activities Club’s budget. I like that these capped off the full-length episodes but they are practically the right kind of material for a short-form series.
As far as content goes, not much has changed. The Outdoor Activities Club are all here, still short on members and still stuck in that storage room. Nadeshiko snoops around the club’s possessions, presumably waiting for the next camping trip (or her next paycheck). I don’t know where exactly this all falls in the Laid-Back Camp canon but it’s where things should be and it’s still very charming.
Funnily enough, Episode 1 of Room Camp actually leaves you hanging a bit. It ends with Chiaki and Aoi taking Nadeshiko on a Yamanashi stamp rally after they suspect that she’s not as familiar with where they all live. This almost suggests that we have an ongoing plot in store and that’s great if that’s true. However, I can just as easily see the show not dwelling any further here. To have the cast venture outside the room during Room Camp seems rather unlikely.
Honestly, my biggest concern with the show is whether or not Rin will get any screen time. I know Nao Touyama is credited for a role reprisal but because these segments are all about the club room antics, I can’t imagine her character will show up too often. Remember: Rin still hasn’t joined the club. If that is the case, it’ll take some getting used to. For me, Rin is a huge reason why I love Laid-Back Camp and she’s practically the main protagonist of the parent show alongside Nadeshiko. And no, I’m not saying all this because of any Best Girl bias or anything…I’m totally not.
Thanks for reading!