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So, Jesus and Buddha walk into a bar...
Well, that was weird. Weird and hilarious. The basic premise behind this 20-minute OVA is Jesus and Buddha holidaying in Japan and trying to enjoy themselves without attracting too much attention, especially from their harsh landlady. The jokes mainly revolve around hiding Buddha’s halo of light and some of Jesus accidentally turning objects into bread, although I had a good laugh at Jesus amassing followers of his blog. (Ah, how nostalgic! Just like the good old days!)
The show thrives on silliness. There’s also a load of religious references (see Jesus’ shirts) that got a giggle from me. My mother is Christian and my grandmother was a Buddhist so seeing the two combine was a particularly treat for me, but I don’t think you need to know much about either religion to get the jokes in Saint Oniisan. If you’re a fan of somewhat bizarre humour, you’ll like this.
Jesus and Buddha are for most part extremely nice, well-meaning goof balls; a rather benign parody compared to many others out there. The comedy comes from their antics, although their personalities tend to contribute to the things they end up doing. I think you’d have to take religion very, very seriously to be offended by these mild-mannered parodies.
In short, Saint Oniisan is definitely something worth checking out, even just for the wtf-ness of the premise.
Final Note: Saint Oniisan still has a second OVA episode in the works (out this summer). Also the theatrical release of the movie is for this Spring.