5 best episodes of “Ano Channel”

Remembering some great moments of Ano-chan's show

Ano Channel (あのちゃんねる) was a TV show featuring ex-You’ll Melt More! member Ano, who left the group in the autumn of 2019 and started her activities as an independent artist. The show aired from October 5, 2020 to September 27, 2021. It consists of 50 episodes, each one 15 minutes long. There’s also one extra 84-minute episode called “Ano Channel Fes” which includes live performance of 5 Ano-chan’s songs. And there are two extra episodes with behind the scenes.

This was a very unusual variety show highly affected by Ano-chan’s personality. It was in no way a conventional TV show, it was more a YouTube-like content which randomly ended up on the television. Sometimes it felt like a miracle that this show somehow continues. The staff of the show definitely put a lot of energy and ideas into it to keep the show going for a year. Ano herself admitted in the last episode with Ryota Yamasato that at the beginning she didn’t like the show and cried every night before shooting, but in the end she is happy that she had an opportunity to produce this show and she learned a lot of things that will be useful for her future.

We picked 5 episodes of “Ano Channel” which in our opinion represent the show in all it variety.

Episode 5. Ano-chan at the zoo

Ano-chan takes a picture with a tiger in the zoo. From the 5th episode of “Ano Channel”

The show was only 4 episodes in, when this extremely random episode aired. The premise is this: Ano-chan has 15 minutes to take 10 pictures with animals in the zoo, but not any animals, only those that are marked on the map provided by the staff. The whole episode is shot in one cut. Even commercials are counted in as at some point the director says “A commercial in 10 seconds”.

This episode was very random and spontaneous. Most likely the team didn’t have enough time to prepare something more complicated so they went with this simple plan. Very short shooting time, very little editing – perfect when deadlines are strict.

As a viewer, you are left with a mixed impression. “What was that?” It’s the main thought left after the episode. “But it was refreshing and interesting in its own way. After all, it was only 15 minutes.” It’s the second thought.

There’ll be a similar episode later. In the episode 26 Ano-chan once again rushes for animal pictures, but that time it was not a zoo, but an aquarium for a change.

Episode 11. Ano-chan and Cookie!

Ano-chan and Cookie sitting in dentist chairs (dental engines if you like) and discussing different things

The guest in this episode of “Ano Channel” is Kunihiro Kawashima (川島邦裕) aka Cookie! (くっきー!), a popular Japanese comic, artist and a member of the group Genie High. He was one of the best guests of the whole show.

Comedy of Cookie consists of strange looking characters and absurd situations. This style is a perfect fit for absurd and sometimes surreal atmosphere of “Ano Channel”. Ano-chan herself is very straightforward and spontaneous, which leaves many people perplexed and baffled. But it is no problem for Cookie.

This episode is very interesting to watch because you see how Cookie understands Ano-chan, you feel that she feels very relaxed and opened speakig with Cookie. He is ready to discuss everything without censure or disapproval. On the contrary, he readily jumps into any topic. And you as a viewer feel something good inside yourself watching this strange but calm and relaxing interaction, which by the way takes place in a big dentistry hall.

Episode 30. 2 hours in a karaoke room

Ano-chan in karaoke. Not singing.

At the first glance it looks like another filler episode. Ano-chan spent 2 hours in a karaoke room alone with cameras constantly shooting her from different points. An episode with very low production costs as one can guess.

This episode is interesting because Ano-chan acts like Ano-chan. She knows that the footage should be turned into a TV show somehow, but she doesn’t really get a damn about it. She feels bored and tired and has no desire to entertain someone. But she doesn’t try to boycott or protest. She orders food and drinks, she sings songs from time to time, she spends time on the smartphone checking social networks, she even sleeps.

“Ano Channel” as a whole is a show with a very free spirit, but this particular episode is filled with an essense of freedom like nothing else. Another small lesson from Ano-chan that she didn’t even intended to give.

Episode 35. “Ano’s Room” with Atsushi Tamura

“Ano’s Room”. The joke is about “Tetsuko’s Room”, an interview-centered TV show by a veteran TV personality Tetsuko Kuroyanagi

To this point Ano-chan welcomed many different guests, but it is the first time when she does a presentation about her guest’s biography. It was Atsushi Tamura (田村淳) in this episode, a member of the comedy duo London Boots.

The charm of this episode is how thoroughly Ano-chan goes through Tamura’s life. Even if she got help from the staff, it’s obvious that she put a good amount of effort by herself to prepare. Such approach reveals another side of Ano-chan. She really knows the topic, but what makes her presentation really interesting is how she puts emphasis on different things. She often just quickly notices her guest’s life events, which are commonly regarded as a big deal, because there’s nothing special in it for Ano-chan. But in other cases she spends comparatively a lot of time for some small and insignificant events.

And thanks to this you undetstand why you are still watching every episode of this show and follow Ano-chan in general. She opens for you a new unconventional perspective in almost everything she does. In other words, she is kind of genius.

Episode 44. Cats vs Dogs Dispute

Ano-chan and Zofy’s Kohei Ueda in the middle of the debate

This is very atypical episode of “Ano Channel” because it is a staged performance from start to finish. And it is very funny!

The episode starts as a talk show with a topic “What is better – cats or dogs?”. The host of this “show” is Naoki Saito from the comedy duo Zophy and his counterpart Kohei Ueda plays as the Ano’s opponent. Ano-chan’s point that dogs are better and Ueda’s point that cats are better. And this battle is very intense!

This episode is really good because you can see Ano-chan’s acting which is half acting, half Ano-chan being Ano-chan. She plays her role without any fallbacks. Where someone else would think if saying or doing something is too much, Ano-chan just says and does it – and this makes everything much more interesting.

This article is not a comprehensive review of “Ano Channel” at all, but we hope it gave you a good impression of this show. The show ended and there’re no plans for renewal, at least, for now. It was really good, and we are looking forward to something else by Ano-chan and her team.

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