Length: 12 x 24 minute episodes
Genre: Sci-fi, comedy
Year of release: 2019
Buddy comedies are best served without buddies. The best stuff is in the bickering. Even beyond its massive pool of jokes, RobiHachi instantly shows that it gets that the leads’ chemistry is important. Robbi and Hachi instantly hit it off – precisely because they want to hit each other! And when shouting at each other isn’t enough, hit each other is just what they do.
But, it’s best getting to grips with RobiHachi’s style, first. It’s colourful! O, so colourful. The intergalactic-travel era Earth is filled with bright, popping colours across a huge range. While the art and animation are nothing to write home about, you can guarantee it’s always going to be catching your eyes with its oddball commercials, random references to sci-fi classics, and sudden jitters into the absurd, such as (my favourite) Robbi’s saxophone solo in a mood-lit bar. This premiere is all over the place, but every new venture is exciting because how far it will go is undetermined.
We learn a lot about Robbi’s hilariously convoluted backstory in this premiere. We learn how excited he is by the prospect of getting rich so he can do nothing. I’ve seen more serious shows try and tackle this subject, but Robbi’s gung-ho attitude with the endgame goal of apathy makes him one of the more exciting chaos protagonists I’ve seen in a while. He can dish out surprisingly inspiring speeches, yes, but in the back of your mind you know it’s all spiele.
Hachi, on the other side, is the straight-man. Well, as straight as one can be around Robbi’s confounded optimism and idiocies – which is to say not very. His entire life philosophy has already began to embrace Robbi’s carefreeisms, and he’s strapping in for a ride. Relatively against his will, of course, because where would the show be without Hachi using his martial arts to slam Robbi into the ground?
I would be lying if I said the show had a solid story. Essentially, Robbi has a big debt, and is taking his debt collector (HACHI!) on a ride to the final tourist destination, Isekander (is that a 2199 reference?), to get the money to pay it back. All the while, they’re being chased by the people he actually owes the debt to. I’m not entirely sure the story will stay like that, as it actually seems intent to be as out there as it can be.
There’s no real guarantee of quality going forward, but I’m absolutely strapped in and welcoming every new bold move it makes. The only thing RobiHachi guarantees is the wildest of rides, and, with this much chemistry, it’s a ride that’s absolutely worth giving a shot to.