Let’s see. I just finished bingeing Humanity Has Declined. I’d say it certainly has!
HHD is set in the distant future. Technological civilization is going away. Humans are on the way out eventually to become extinct. Our great cities have crumbled. Food production is low. Hunger is common, electricity in short supply. We don’t know what happened or why.
This is the most light-hearted post-apocalyptic show I’ve seen. The situation is hopeless but not serious.
It is not a story of heroic efforts to rejuvenate humanity or probing the mystery of why we are disappearing. Some technology still exists. The land looks green and productive, though meat is difficult to come by. Humans can still produce babies. The only explanation I see is that humans no longer want to reproduce. We have simply accepted our fate. Extinction does not cause anguish or even resistance. Ah well!
Let us go about our ordinary lives and simply be content because being unhappy isn’t going to change anything. The future is not the enemy of the present. That is an important lesson here.
If we are the outgoing race, the incoming race is the fairies. They stand a few inches tall and are adept at magic. They reproduce rapidly when they are happy and are capable of generating a hi-tech civilization over a matter of a few nights. The same civilization can collapse almost instantly should they become unhappy. Their lives center around having fun and consuming sweets. Sweets seem to be the one thing they cannot produce and are limited to natural sources.
They remind me very much of little children in their innocence, their short attention spans, and their almost instantaneous mood swings.
Fairies aren’t hostile to people, just indifferent and maybe a bit frightened. (Unless you give them sweets. Then you are Kami-sama) Human communities have the post of Mediator, the person designated to interact with the fairies.
There is still a government out there. The UN has managed to hang on, running the school and generating power and pursuing useless projects like the Human Monument Project, a way to let future life know we were here and what we accomplished in the past.
Our protagonist never really gets a name and just refers to herself as “I”, tho she is also called “Miss Sweets” (because she is one of the very few people who can still make sweets) and “Mediator” and “Granddaughter”. The fairies have also called her Queen and God (Kami-sama). She is also one of the last graduates of the school, it is to be closed and torn down sometime after her graduation. (If we are going extinct what is the point of a school?) She is given the job of mediator with the fairies in her village since she gets along so well with them
It is amazing how cooperative the fairies get for a little sugar.
Her Grandfather is some kind of bureau chief with the UN, tho we never know what he’s a chief of. When we see his office, he has a huge collection of all kinds of firearms which he is constantly cleaning. It also has a lot of objects riddled with bullet holes (mostly misses) tho we never see him shoot anything. He sends Granddaughter off on her various missions.
“Assistant” is a quiet boy who assists Grandfather and the Mediator. In the entire show he speaks only once briefly. He was found alone in the wild and had no idea of his own identity since he had nobody to relate to and tell him who he was. He wears a Hawaiian shirt with large yellow stars and often looks at the world thru a video camera.
“Y” is another girl who attended school with Miss Sweets, also known as “Silver” from
her hair. At first, she appears hostile to our protagonist. Things progress and interesting plot points happen. She is a massive fujoshi, stealing homoerotic books from the library. There are several other girls attending school who become significant characters but she is the only one who appears again later in the story.
There was an offhand remark about a girl who was careless and got pregnant. Miss Sweets seems completely uninterested in such things. There are boys in school but they never make it beyond background noise.
The anime is divided into arcs. The arcs are not in chronological order. If you’re just treating it as a slice-of-life and watching weekly, it wouldn’t make much difference. But I binged it. If you were to watch the last arc first (Fairy’s Secret Tea Party) and the first arc last, (The Fairy’s Secret Factory) the story makes much more sense. Each of these arcs explores a different theme, some using fairies to illustrate human foibles.
Personally, I’d watch them in this order:
The Fairy’s Earth shows us how a fashion can sweep thru a culture like wildfire and then disappear. Junkyard to futuristic megacity in a couple days.
The Fairies’ Time Management has our heroine in a time loop, trying to meet Assistant for the first time. Fairies have good control over the fabric of space-time.
The Fairies’ Homecoming concerns a pair of robots that have developed human feelings and as a side plot, the discovery that microwaves and strong radio waves are harmful to fairies.
And the six bonus episodes with the arc being “Mankind’s Survival of the Fittest“. Beware of magic spoons!
That’s another anime binge and another excellent recommendation!