*This is a translated article by QooApp under the permission of SPICE. Reproduction in any form without permission is prohibited.
Odd Taxi, while sporting an unassuming art style, quickly swerves into a fascinating mystery drama revolving around cutesy anthropomorphic characters. Aired on TV back in 2021, the series has now made its way to the silver screen, turned into a comic, and even adapted as a theater play.
The ODD EXHIBITION－Odd Taxi Exhibition, held at the Tokyo Anime Center in downtown Shibuya’s DNP Plaza from August 26 to October 10, proved to be an extravaganza that allows its fans to truly immerse themselves in the quirky world built by manga artist Kazuya Konomoto. In this overview of the exhibition, we’ll be taking a deep dive at what visitors had to see at the venue along with photo snaps of the place.
▍An Audio Guide that Sets the Pace
The exhibition’s highlight must be how in-depth the audio guide is. More than simply explaining away the different exhibits, the audio nav illuminates the intent of the showrunners as you the listener visually take in the different little messages the creators have to say on the different aspects of the show.
The audio experience, voiced by comedian duos Yusuke Nishizawa and Atsuhiro Tsuda who play the role of standup jokesters in the show as well, provides lovely tidbits and passionate banter almost akin to actual dialogue straight from Odd Taxi.
The actual audio guide provided works off visitors scanning the QR codes placed around the exhibit on their phones. App download and headphones are a must-bring so you don’t miss out on the original content to listen to.
▍Immersing Yourself in the Experience of Each Scene
The exhibition recreates a number of different scenes. Beginning off the tour at the “Yamabiko” Izakaya bar. The countertop was decorated with tokkuri flasks and ornate food models shaped like bowls of oden rounding out the mise-en-scène. Guests were welcome to take a seat if they wish for photoshoots as well.
Up next was a recreation of the room Odokawa makes his humble living. Though the gigantic plush of the man himself might just get a chuckle out of you for how oversized he is in comparison to everything around him. The walls and fusuma doors leave no details behind either, showing off the cat scratches and bullet holes accurate to the show.
Looking through the concept art and floor plans plastered on the wall opposite, one can see the painstaking detail that went into each separate background that decorates the show.
▍Strike a Pose in The Back Seat
The most popular photoshoot spot in the Odd Taxi exhibition had to be the titular taxi being driven by Hiroshi Odokawa himself. The environment even incorporates a city nightscape backdrop, the ambiance of passing cars and taxi lamp clicking rounding out the sonic experience of the photoshoot spot. Though we couldn’t get a photo of it here, the taxi meter also accurately showed the characters “割増” (Extra Fee) flashing above the dashboard. It’s pretty late in the night.
The back of the driver’s seat even has a little tray holding Odokawa’s business card that guests could take home. The photo spot even featured selfie stands, perfect for visitors to place themselves like their actual passengers on the protagonists’ ride.
▍An Eye for Detail
Moving deeper still, visitors to the Odd Taxi exhibition can see all the little props, scripts, and concept documents that decorate the various glass panels. Key items from the different episodes can be seen in prop form, as well as a whole lot of paraphernalia that one would question: “was making this necessary!?”
As part of the world-building, Odd Taxi goes so far as to make cute little screenshots of original SNS websites and video streaming sites for every single shot where a phone would be present. One particular panel in the room even goes so far as to meditate on the detail of what each character’s phone looked like in the show.
The audio guide by the two comedians utters the words: “No such thing as adlibs and mishaps in an Anime!”. The sheer amount of visuals on display truly shows off the creators’ intent on building a world as cohesive as they humanly could.
The idol group “Mystery Kiss” performs a little show in a corner of the Odd Taxi exhibit, being available for photographs. The live stage mockup also shows an elaborate music video in the back monitor evoking the ’90s aesthetics and soundscape, adding to the almost humorous adherence to a believable world.
The few exhibits afterward were completely off-limits for photos and go into spoiler territory. So, unfortunately, we had our hands tied to show anything around the venue’s specific part. These parts are only for those who got in for themselves!
A particular corner in the exhibit shows off a particularly unfamiliar set of character renders. These were, in fact, original illustrations gifted to the cast of Odd Taxi upon the airing of the TV anime! Depicting each and every voice cast that participated in the project as anthropomorphic animals, it was interesting to see what film director Baku Kinoshita saw in each of the casts of his movie.
The final photo spot of the exhibition saw the main cast of Odd Taxi in front of the building housing the very exhibition. Each character can be seen sporting casual attire and standing in front of the Shibuya MODI building. Tangentially, a message board signed by some of the voice roles of the anime could be seen on the wall near the exit, congratulating the opening of the venue.
▍Dive Head First into the Merch Store!
The museum shop at the tail end of the Odd Taxi exhibition also picks out a bunch of merchandise for the most avid fans. An elaborate spa gift set possibly inspired by how Odogawa frequents the sauna in the show was sold for JPY$3,000. Other standouts included the sticker set inspired by the in-universe gacha game “Zoo Logical Garden” or “Zooden”, one can redeem upon purchasing any trinket at the store.
The “ODD EXHIBITION－Odd Taxi Exhibition” in downtown Shibuya’s Tokyo Anime Center was open from August 26 to October 10 of this year. Offering the anime’s most die-hard of fans a chance to truly deep-dive into the makings of the show. Being audibly guided by two of the voice casts while ruminating was quite the treat as well.
▍ODD EXHIBITION－Odd Taxi Exhibition Details
■ Period: August 26 ~ October 10, 2022
■ Business Hours: 11:00 ~ 20:00 (admissions closed 30 minutes prior to closing)
↳ Open 7 days a week
■ Location: Tokyo Anime Center in DNP PLAZA SHIBUYA (Shibuya MODI 2F, 1-21-3 Jinnan, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo)
■ Admission Fees: Weekday Reserved Tickets JPY$1,500 (tax included)/ Weekend+Public Holiday Reserved Tickets JPY$1,800 (tax included)/ Walk-in Tickets JPY$1,800 (tax included)
■ Official Website: https://tokyoanimecenter.jp/event/odd_ex/
■ Official Twitter: https://twitter.com/oddtaxi_ex
Event Organized by Dai Nippon Printing (DNP), Dream Studio
Supported by: 小戸川交通パートナーズ (Odd Taxi Production Committee)
The original article was written by Mika Kosugi (小杉美香) and published by SPICE, which can be found here: https://spice.eplus.jp/articles/307289