REVIEW: ‘Komi Can’t Communicate,’ Episode 16

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Komi Can’t Communicate Episode 16 - But Why Tho

Komi Can’t Communicate Episode 16 is a Japanese Netflix Original anime directed by Ayumu Watanabe and animated by Studio OLM. This slice-of-life comedy anime is an adaptation of the popular manga series created by Tomohito Oda. The voice acting cast for the Komi Can’t Communicate consists of Aoi Koga (Love is War) as Shouko Komi, Gakuto Kajiwara (Fire Force) as Hitohito Tadano, and Rie Murakawa (Re: Zero) as Najimi Osana.

Komi Can’t Communicate Episode 16 is Christmas Eve, and Komi, unfortunately, has nothing planned. Luckily, a last-minute phone call from Najimi changes all of that when they inform her that they are going to have a Christmas party. Little does Komi know that the party will be at her house. Meanwhile, Komi and her friends do some last-minute gift shopping in hopes of finding the perfect gift for one another.

Komi Can’t Communicate Episode 16 brings more classic anime tropes into the Christmas and birthday episodes of the series. Granted, in my opinion, the Christmas or any special occasion episode is quite possibly two of the most done tropes in anime. These types of episodes typically tend to go the same way. Friends gather together, exchange gifts, and play party games. There is also some big romantic gesture such as a confession or first date. More or less, most anime series that use this trope seem to follow the same formula. Komi Can’t Communicate isn’t any different, minus the romantic gesture. It essentially follows the same procedure. However, it still manages to put its unique touch on the trope.

The lack of comedy is becoming more noticeable as the series goes on. That is not to say this episode does not have any comedy. But the laughs aren’t as big. However, the lack of humor makes sense as Komi Can’t Communicate focuses more on friendships, heartfelt moments, and developing romantic relationships this season. I also don’t think the lack of comedy is an issue. It just takes a little getting used to the show’s tone changing up a bit. For example, some moments in this episode come off a bit deadpan, and it is not clear if it is meant to be funny or not.

Komi Can’t Communicate Episode 16 changes up the storytelling format of this episode. Instead of packing the episode with multiple segments and skits, this episode keeps the main focus on the Christmas party and celebrating Komi’s Birthday. I appreciated the change of pace in the storytelling format, making the episode more special.

Episode 16 also offered a slightly deeper look into Shouko and Shosuke’s relationship as brother and sister. As well as take a little more mystery out of Shosuke’s character. The moments between Shouko and Shosuke shopping for a gift with one another showed how much Komi depends on her brother, even though he is the younger sibling. Although Shosuke puts up an annoyed or exasperated front, it is clear he cares about his sister and would help her with just about anything.

Lastly, this episode showed Komi’s brother in a slightly different light. For the most part, it has been assumed that the Komi family, except the mother, has communication disorders in various social settings. However, Episode 16 shows that Shosuke doesn’t have a communication disorder. He chooses not to communicate. Or instead, it is more appropriate to say that he prefers to speak as little as possible and only when completely necessary. He also doesn’t seem interested in engaging with others, let alone making friends. All of this makes Shosuke a fascinating and unique character in the show.

Overall, Komi Can’t Communicate Episode 16 is worth the watch. It puts its own spin on the tried and true Christmas and birthday episode trope. This episode’s pacing and storytelling pattern was a nice change compared to other episodes. Putting a majority of the focus on the main story made it feel more unique instead of doing a short segment. As the show focuses on developing relationships and romance, there are noticeably fewer comedic moments, but that’s not a bad thing. Switching up the tone and focus of the series allows for a deeper look at certain characters and the chemistry between them. 

Komi Can’t Communicate Episode 16 is streaming now on Netflix.


Komi Can't Communicate Episode 16
7.5/10

TL;DR

Overall, Komi Can’t Communicate Episode 16 is worth the watch. It puts its own spin on the tried and true Christmas and birthday episode trope. This episode’s pacing and storytelling pattern was a nice change compared to other episodes. Putting a majority of the focus on the main story made it feel more unique instead of doing a short segment. As the show focuses on developing relationships and romance, there are noticeably fewer comedic moments, but that’s not a bad thing. Switching up the tone and focus of the series allows for a deeper look at certain characters and the chemistry between them.