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Mysteria Friends Anime Review

Title: Mysteria Friends

Director: Hideki Okamoto

Writer: Hiroshi Yamaguchi

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks

U. S. Release Date: 3-10-20

Format: Blu-ray / 10 Episodes / 150 Minutes

Genre: Fantasy

Age Rating: TV 14

Overall Personal Rating: C-

Synopsis:

The students come to Mysteria Academy to learn the art of magic. Anne is a princess as well as a top student, well gifted in magic. She has become friends with Grea, a princess from another realm, who is a half-human/half-dragon.

The regular things such as studying and test taking go on, and even the ever present beach episode. But it is a magic school and not everyone is human, so there are some unique things that go on.

The main focus of the series is the friendship of the two princesses. Grea lacks the confidence of Anne which causes dome difficulties. She really likes Anne and has quite a crush on her. Anne doesn’t seem to realize this, but still really likes Grea and wants to spend time with her. But as royals, duties can get in the way.

Commentary:

So, my big issue with Mysteria Friends is that I don’t even know who to recommend this for. The show doesn’t seem to have a clear audience in mind or what kind of anime it is. Episode one dives in with fan service and innuendos. I expected it since the back cover seems to boldly hint at that. Then it really drops off, so it is more like a magic high school drama show. Or yuri. But not really. There is a bit more fan service thorough out, but in the end, it gets pretty bland. So, the beginning seems like it is for adults but the end seems aimed at a younger audience. From fan service to blushful crushes. It would have been a fine show had they gone either way but it was muddled and usually seemed like a platform for random ideas the would be cool to do.

The characters of Anne and Grea are okay. Visually they are well designed and the personalities are fine. Nothing unique, even though Grea has a tail and wings, her personality is shy and self-conscious. True, as half dragon she has things to cope with that others don’t, but it really is important in one episode, and that doesn’t really need to be there for the story development. Anne is a high achiever, but as a princess who will one day lead her community, her royal duties are increasing. Unfortunately it is too much the same as the princess in tada never falls in Love which I recently watched. So, it seemed bland. Except for Anne’s sort of body guard, the other characters come and go randomly. Characters get thrown in and maybe are quirky or act in a certain way, but it goes nowhere as if they are no more than props.

The biggest part of the plot is the friendship of the two princesses. Grea really values her relationship with Anne and appears to have romantic feelings for her, sometimes. It’s not always consistent. Like when Anne seems to want a stronger relationship, Grea doesn’t seem to notice. Grea sure gets embarrassed a lot. Over and over. Over done.

The story really isn’t fleshed out. There is plenty of starts at things but they don’t develop are become part of the story, or things we might need to know just skipped over. Everything is rushed.The episodes are only 15 minutes long. Mostly it just moves onto to something else. One episodes introduces monsters of sort and then that’s it, nothing, no impact, no nothing.

We never get a sense of what their world is about. The setting is cool, especially as a Harry Potter fan, but that is’t utilized much. It’s as if it is only because it looks cool, but there is no reason for it. They go to the beach (of course) and swim among ruins, looks cool, but nothing else, no reason for it.

So, as a story, as a series, it lacks purpose and direction. Why? It’s based on a game! Mysteria Friends tries to tell a story with the elements and setting of a game. It stayed the bits and pieces.

Overall Grade: C-

Review: Di Gi Charat Ultimate Collection

Title: Di Gi Charat Ultimate Collection on Blu-ray

U. S. Publisher: Sentai Filmworks

U. S. Release Date: 9-17-19

Format: Blu-ray / 33 episodes / 320 Minutes

Audio Language: English or Japanese for the series, Japanese for the specials.

Genre: Comedy

Age Rating: TV PG

Overall Personal Rating: B

Synopsis:

Di Gi Charat is a collection of comedic episodes that mostly stand on their own. Basically, alien teen girls come to earth, landing in Akihabara, supposedly to be famous entertainers, but they actually end up working and living at a game store. New to the culture, they still understand most everything, but a few mistakes are made and their unique abilities cause a few odd problems. Still, they seem to know how to keep the customers in line (or at least baffled).

Commentary:

If you are looking for something light and happy to watch, and would be knowledgeable about gaming/anime references, then Di Gi Charat might be the show you are ready to binge. It is a fine diversion, silly and funny with extra helpings of cute. Don’t be expecting something out of the ordinary or epic. It’s just for fun.

Now, I know there is a back story of sorts, the female characters come from another planet. But there doesn’t seem to be a real need for it, but I do suppose it justifies their quaint or unusual behaviors and unique abilities.

The girls are made to be a store mascot, and they do so very well. Cute, bubbly and easily recognizable with their look: outfits and especially the oversized hair ornaments/hair ties. Top marks for character design. I also enjoyed the way the people in the crowd were depicted. Hey, there is an element of truth in its near faceless portrayal.

The episodes are short, which makes the aforementioned binge watching a touch annoying with the opening song seeming to take as much time as the episode. I never timed it, but it was still annoying. Cute, but annoying… like cute often is.

Now, it is an older series, so it looks that way. The animation is dated and there is a cartoony feel to things. But that suits Di Gi Charat fine.

The disc contains a big section of OVA specials not on the main menu page. Make sure to look for them.

Overal Grade: B

Cute, funny and silly. Hey, it’s a comedy. Better be in the mood for cute.

Waiting in the Summer (anime review)

Title: Waiting in the Summer Complete Collection on Blu-ray

Directed By: Tatsuyuki Nagai

Written By: Yōsuke Kuroda

Studio: J. C. Staff

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U. S. Release Date: March 15th, 2016

Format: Blu-ray / 12 Episodes + OVA / 325 Minutes

Genre: Harem, Slice of Life, Fan Service, Romance, Sci Fi

Age Rating: TV 14

Overall Personal Rating: A-

Synopsis: 

When a group of friends decide to make a movie over a long summer holiday, they end up learning a little about film-making and a lot more about each other and themselves. What begins as a simple way to avoid the summer doldrums quickly turns into something much more complex, intimate, and downright revealing.

As the summer heats up, so do the maturing relationships between the young cast members, taking some new, and sometimes unexpected, turns. Get ready for a whole new look at summer romance as hidden emotions get captured and secrets meant to be kept hidden inside young hearts instead spill off the screen for your viewing pleasure in Waiting in the Summer!

Commentary:

Thank you Sentai Filmworks for going back into the vault and bringing this wonderful anime back to life. The english dub should help bring a larger audience to it. As for the dub, because I an so familiar with the original release, I didn’t find it as attractive as the 2016 release.

Waiting in the Summer is one of the sleeper anime that few people have seen. It has a rather straight forward plot and a simplistic romance structure, yet it catches your attentions and makes you really like these high school students on summer break and wish you could hang out with them and make a move too.

With this being a re-release and adding the OVA I am curious why there wasn’t a English dub. I understand that there is a large cost to doing that. I just think that a English dub would have brought another layer of fans to the series and proved to be profitable.

Overall Grade: A-

I is nice to see Waiting in the Summer re-released with the OVA and forcing me to take another look at it. One one level there is a warn innocence that flows though it and on the other hand a sad reality to some things just can’t be. With all that is going on with the film mirroring the plot line and the hidden specter of the men in black makes it hard to stop watching.

The animation is a smooth easy touch that is very typical   for anime of this type and the attention to detail done with such a soft touch that things flow together with the plot perfectly. I can’t think of any other style that would have helped tell the story any better. The only detractor I have is that it does drag a bit in the middle and leave the viewer a tad frustrated with what is going on. I still find the series strong and with the added OVA it is just that much better.

If you haven’t had a chance to see Waiting in the Summer then I think that this is the time to discover a series that is warm and friendly with layers of strange goings on. If you are in the mood for a easy going anime that has plenty of fun and oddities in it then Waiting in the Summer is for you.

Sagrada Reset

Anime Review


Title: Sagrada Reset: Complete Collection on Blu-ray

Director: Shinya Kawatsura

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks

U. S. Release Date: May 21th, 2019

Format: Blu-ray /24 Episodes / 600 Minutes/ 3 Discs

Genre: “metaphysical” drama

Age Rating: TV 14

Overall Grade: A-

Synopsis:

In the small city of Sagrada reality is different. Many of its residents have special and unique abilities. No, not flying or spider like senses, but usually odd and rule specific “talents”. For instance, one man can take photographs that people can enter and talk with the subjects if they tear the paper, but only for 10 minutes. With all the possibilities, good and bad, does someone need to be in control? The Bureau is an organization which attempts to be aware of the abilities in use and step in when necessary. But on whose judgement is this organized, and you might guess there other influencers orchestrating in a different point of view.

Misora Haruki has the ability to reset time, everything begins again where she last saved, including her memories. She can’t even leave herself notes because that too would be reset.  So what can be done with that ability? Without a memory, there isn’t hope that things will be different a second time. Why bother to repeat a day if it would be the same? She doesn’t even know it is a reset. Only when an aquaintance introduces her to Kei Asai does the true importance of her ability becomes practical. Kei’s ability is to remember everything big or little and it is absolute, meaning this memory is intact through resets. He intends to pair up with Haruki as a way to help people and relieve suffering. But life and circumstances are a complicated weave of interdependence. To create a change or plan will undoubtably cause unintended turns in a chain of events.

Commentary:

Sagrada Reset is a layered story and develops increasing complexity. A viewer really needs to pay attention. On that note, during one watch session, a couple of people sat in on an episode a quarter way through the series and they were hooked right away and definitely put this on their list to watch.

Part of the strength of Sagrada Reset is the way it is structured with story blocks running 3-5 episodes long. This gives the back and forth timeline enough space to be better explored. They build upon each other as the series goes on. It also has the ability to evoke a sense of urgency or pressure without being so dramatic.

I found the characters to be interesting. They are easy to care about which could have been very difficult because self-centered/self-serving ability users are the norm. The main characters do have friendships, but they aren’t simple companionship. There is something they need in order to push time in their own chosen direction. New characters are introduced as their abilities are necessary to move the story forward.

Sagrada Reset has some thought provoking ideas and questions. Like how far would you push things if you knew you could reset and live it all over again? What is the importance of memories? How they are valued and do they account for who we are and who other people are to us. If we had the ability to create a copy of someone who is gone, even with the same memories, are they the same person?

Somewhere in the middle, I found things got a bit difficult (complex?), with lots of talking, repeating and explaining. The story, events and results were not just handed to us. Some tricky dialogue, in other words, pseudo-explainations. Like some prose and poetry, it doesn’t all make sense. But trying to figure it out does make it interesting and thought provoking.

Save. I enjoyed Sagrada Reset and plan to watch it again. I think there is even more for me to understand. I want to see what the characters do, to figure out when they are trying to manipulate events, or even if their manipulations are in fact someone else creating the reality. With precognitions, I’ll be able to catch the more subtle movement of the story and its characters the second time around. Reset…

Overall Grade: A-

Who has the right to decide the future, to manipulate the outcomes, the lives of others. Being indirect even when you know the answer.

Mitsusboshi Colors Anime Review

Title: Mitsuboshi Colors Complete Collection

Director: Tomoyuki Kawamura

Publisher: Sentai Filmworks

U. S. Release Date: 4-30-19

Format: Blu-ray / 12 Episodes /300 Minutes

Audio: Japanese and English

Genre: Comedy

Age Rating: TV 14

Overall Personal Rating: A-

Synopsis:

Yui, Sacchan, and Kotoha are three grade school friends. In their youthful energy and self assurance, they have formed a group called Colors making it a mission to protect the peace in their town. Yet their inherent mischief and childish logic bring distress to Saito, a local security officer.

Their peace keeping mission is a rather broad idea and (surprise) childish, but they do attempt to help by ridding the town of allergy causing pollen, find a mystical creature, solve mysteries and save the elephants.

The trio often hang out in their club house in the wooded park. Having freedom to head out on their own all over town, they stop in the small shops in the market to visit with the friends they’ve made. Notable is Pops a big friendly bear of a guy who gets a kick out of their antics and is often an enabler in the wacky schemes.

Commentary:

Mitsuboshi Colors is a silly anime that is endearing and fun to watch. It is all upbeat and appropriate for everyone. (Well, if you have a mischief maker who might get some new ideas, you might want to avoid it.) I’m glad anime like this is still being made and brought over. A plus is it has an English dub, opening it up to be enjoyed by younger viewers. This anime got its start as a manga series, so hopefully there is more to come.

The characters are developed enough to be fun in all their personality traits. This made it a lot of fun to watch the officer Saito have to deal with the brazen Sacchan. He didn’t really see the humor in the illogical Colors the way Pops did.

Sound support for Mitsuboshi Colors was well done with all the background noises and the often subtle but relevant music. My common complaint was that some of the voices become grating with excess squeakiness.

I found the setting to be wonderfully Japanese. The girls had a childhood freedom foreign to us here. The markets, the food, the shops, the human interactions add to the interest of it all, the newness and discovery. Even with the differences, we can all connect with the spark of life, excitement and community.

Overall Grade: A-….. funny, cute, squeaky, colorful, silly, adventure, annoying, energetic, dis-logical….The annoying qualities of childhood that are essentially so silly that it elicits warm humor.

Hakumei and Mikochi Anime Review


Title: Hakumei and Mikochi, Tiny little life in the woods ; Complete Collection

Director: Masaomi Ando

Hakumei and Mikochi Bluray

U.S. Publisher: Sentai Filmworks

Format: Blu-ray / 10 Episodes plus OVA/ 325 Minutes

Audio: English dub or Japanese with English sub

Genre: Slice of Life, Fantasy and Travel

Age Rating: TV 14

Overall Personal Rating: B-

Synopsis:

Hakumei and Mikochi share a house in the woods. They may be 3.5 inches tall, but their life is typical for living outside a village in a wooded rural area. The time period could be the 1800s (without electricity), but with an 2000s mindset.

We get to know the pair throughout the series. Hakumei is energetic, enthusiastic, a bit of an adventurer and has a talent for carpentry. She had been homeless and joined up with a traveling caravan for a while, before coming to the village, meeting Mikochi, whose talents range from sewing to cooking.

Their friendship is central to the series as they live out their daily lives, meet new people (or animals, or bugs), and go on some little adventures.

Commentary:

Hakumei and Mikochi is a quiet little fantasy with its miniature people, talking animals and some pseudo-science magic. In the American entertainment market, it is difficult to figure out who the target audience would be. It has an overall feel good kid’s cartoon vibe, but there is smoking and alcohol consumption, which doesn’t fit with that identity in here. True, I’m chronologically not a kid, and at first I wasn’t too interested in the anime. There didn’t seem to be a reason for them to be tiny people, which is annoying ( like in The Life of Budori Gusuko, there is no reason for them to be cats). I mean, if you look at the Borrowers or the anime take on that literary series, Ariettty, then you see how their size impacts their life and how they adapt to their surroundings and in turn adapt items into their little piece of the world. Here in Hakumei and Midochi, most of what they have and how they live is just like being a regular sized person. They have real houses and towns with regular doors, regular teapots, nearly every thing is regular. The big exception seems to be food in its natural state, berries are the size of their head, a fish is the size of a truck, and a daikon radish is the size of a mini cooper. Transportation seems to involve a rodent, whether they hop on the back of a raccoon or ride in the bus pulled by a guinea pig.

Size issues aside, I did get settled into the anime routine and this is what I liked about Hakumei and Midochi: I did choose this one by the cover for the pretty background art, which it continues throughout and didn’t disappoint there. All the animation was good, the colors bright and saturated. The dub was good, not annoying, and I thought it worked well. The characters were likable, positive and upbeat and their friendship was nice to be a part of. I think that is what we often appreciate in anime, the friendship connection.

I think if you like Aria or Tamako Markert, you would also enjoy the series Hakumei and Mikochi.

Overall Grade: B- With all the cuteness of a beetle with a bow on her antenna, Hakumei and Mikochi is also available in a manga series.

Just Because Anime Review

Just Because!


Title: Just Because; Complete Collection

U. S. Publisher: Sentai Filmworks

U. S. Release Date: 2-26-19

Format: Blu-ray / 12 Episodes / 300 Minutes

Director: Atsushi Kobayashi

Genre: Romance Drama

Age Rating: 14+

Overall Personal Rating: A-

Synopsis:

The end of high school is near. The third years are going to be moving on, whether to college or entering into the work force. Most of them are preoccupied with studying for their entrance exams.

If that isn’t enough to worry about, Eitu Izumi has just moved back in the area for the final semester. He moved away during middle school and time moved on. With a lack of energy or interest, he visits his new high school, finds out that some of his childhood classmates attend this school. His old friend Haruto Soma is surprised, but they connect quickly over baseball.

Eitu learns his middle school crush, Mio Natsume, also goes there. This is where things lie hidden and complicated. Eitu likes Mio, Mio likes Soma, Soma likes Morikawa, she doesn’t seem interested in anyone and finally, Ena Komiya likes Eitu.

The classmates and friends move cautiously as they are about to crash into their adult lives. It is time to savor their youth, and they know they will be losing the life they are comfortable with. They need to say what is in their hearts before the oppertunities are lost. However, with everything about to change, does it really matter.

Commentary:

I enjoyed watching Just Because!. And not just because I happened to watch the Valentine’s Day episode on February 14th. It is a high school drama, which most of us have probably seen many over the years, but it didn’t feel like an old story. We meet this new group of teens as Eitu moves back to his former town. As he is reacquainted with the people his friends became, we are introduced to the school and students along side him.

It was interesting how Eitu’s moving really highlighted the change they all had being going though over the years and that this is the finale of their childhood. It was really pivotal to the telling of their story, the changes of life and who you become as you deal with it all.

Just Because!  does take place in a high school, so there are plenty of common, comfortable elements. Besides the exams, there are the issues of liking someone. What do you do with that? I liked the way the characters could develop different views on love and not be stuck in a childish idealistic view. It was interesting how their personalities contributed to the way they dealt with things, it could be moving on, persistence, or changing the circumstances. Do you speak up, confess, or stay back?

I enjoyed the animation, it looks like rotoscoping was used. The animators paid attention to details, back grounds, keeping the camaera angles interesting an adding in visual interests through out. I think it makes it all more immersive and interesting than live action. You can see things differently. There were several instances where they really made a point to emphasizes the animation, like a tear rolling down Komiya’s face, when Eitu was throwing a ball or Soma was swinging a bat. An especially cool moment was when Soma was riding a bike and we see ahead of him from his point of view, the way the shadows change as he passes lights.

Just Because! is both subbed and dubbed. I mostly watch the dubbed, because I prefer it, but then I get used to the charters voices one way, so the Japanese voices seemed like they belong to someone else, but still it was good.

All in all, I liked the characters. The only issue I had there was Eitu’s seemingly indifference. His expressions and emotions were too subdued, but oddly enough, I still like his character. There was something deep within him, but his life circumstances seemed to weigh down on him.

The ending was satisfactory. I want to let you know to watch past when the credits start. They still include story content.

Overall Grade: A- If you like Say I Love You or Tamako’s Market, I think you will like Just Because!

Dive!! The Complete Collection (anime review)

Title: Dive!! The Complete Collection

Director: Kaoru Suzuki

Written By: Tōko Machida

Studio: Zero-G

U.S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U. S. Release Date: Dec. 11th, 2018

Format: Blu-ray / 12 Episodes / 300 Minutes

Genre: Sports, Drama, Comedy, Slice of Life

Age Rating: PG

Overall Personal Rating: B+

Synopsis:

Tomoko Sakai has loved the sport of diving since he was a child, and there’s no place he’d rather be than the high board at the Mizuki Diving Club. Unfortunately, the MDC’s having hard time staying afloat financially and there’s a sinking certainty that the club is about to drown in a sea of its own debt. Fiery female coach Kayoko Asaki has a bold plan to throw the club a lifeline, but it’s going to require achieving something that’s almost impossible: get one of the club’s members on the National team for the next Olympics! Can this struggling group of young athletes pool their talents in time to resuscitate their club, or will they make the ultimate belly flop? It’s time to sink or swim as the whole team leaps for the gold!

Commentary:

Dive!! jumps into the deep end of the many sports and swimming anime that have littered the screen over the last few years thanks to the popularity series like Free and Haikyu!!. Most of the series that come out tend to be heavy on sports and drama and light on character development and substance. Dive!! on the other hand play lightly with the sport and focuses on the character development. This helps the short series rise to a level most don’t manage to find.

Being a serious fan of Haikyu!! I expect a sports anime to give me more that just cheesecake I want to care about these young athletes and really want to see then succeed. Dive!! manages to provide me with 3 characters that each have their own reason to compete and also have good reason to become friends. The fact that we don’t have the revenge rivalry amounts these 3 is great. They have their reasons to compete and go for the top, but they also see the best in each other. Often you find a team spirit that is only at the surface with some other deep seeded envy or unhealthy competitive nature lurking in the dark areas of the characters existence. Dive!! makes these young athletes friends before they become true competitors which helps them root for each other in a very natural way. That in itself would make the series work watching, but add that to full character development and you have a solid series that makes you smile more often than not.

Overall Garde: B+

I know you are asking why is it that I praised the series so highly and only give it a B+. The answer is simple, there series is just way too short. Everything seems to flow naturally through the first 10 episodes then like a flurry the story is wrapped up. There is a rush to complete that both disappoints and also lets these wonderful characters down. I wanted to learn more about all three of these main characters and get a better feeling of the struggles they each have to go through. In other words the series let itself down by being so short.

The rest of the production was solid from the animation to the voice acting. There were a few moments that I felt a softer tough with cell shading would have worked better, but they are not paying me to be a technical advisor so I guess that is just a personal issue.

If you enjoy sports anime and are looking for a quick fix then all I can say if Dive!! into it, you will walk away with a smile.

 

 

UQ Holder! (anime review)

Title: UQ Holder! on Blu-ray

Director: Youhei Suzuki

Studio: J. C. Staff

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U. S. Release Date: Nov. 27th, 2018

Format: Blu-ray / 12 episodes + 3 OVA / 375 Minutes

Genre: Shonen, Harem, Super Natural, Romance, Fantasy

Are Rating: TV MA

Overall Personal Rating: B+

Synopsis:

When you’re the grandson of a famous hero, you’d think that your life would be interesting, but Tota Konoe is stuck in the dullest place he can imagine! He can’t even leave his tiny village until he can defeat his teacher and foster parent Yukihime, and she seems to be impossibly powerful. Then everything changes when Yukihime is attacked and Tota learns that both she and Tota himself aren’t who or what Tota thought they were! Now Tota has a new, impossibly long life ahead of him and an amazing destiny that ties in with the fate of his grandfather, the legendary Negi Springfield! Get ready for vampires, demons and magic users galore as Tota discovers the perils of being a member of the world’s most exclusive organization as a UQ Holder!

Commentary:

UQ Holder! is a continuation of the much beloved Negima series it might be hard to live up to all the hype surrounding the past. UQ Holder! manages to do a fine job of taking the past and melding it into the current series. I am a little disappointed that some of the answers that are provided are rather simplistic and maybe a little over contrived, but the simple fact is that UQ Holder! is fun. The plot is straight forward with few surprising twist and a rather solid underlying hopefulness that makes many Shonen anime so popular. The main character, Tota, is very much as simple as his forefather Negi, but he also has a naivety that Negi did not completely have. It is almost as if there was a mix of Goku from Dragon Ball Z and Negi to make this odd rather incomplete being. Of course his discovery of himself along the way is all part of the strength of the series.

Overall Grade: B

There is something wonderful about Tota and some of the other characters, but the insane mix of harem anime culture really detracts away from the true positive aspects of the series. The area that it shines is the real love story amount Tota and Yukihime along with his simplistic bonds with some of the other characters. I found myself liking Tota against my will and also feeling sorry for Yukihime when maybe she didn’t deserve it. Most of the others were more or less comic relief and sometimes got in the way.

My great sadness comes form the week reliance on fan service to provide silly events and even push some absurd moments forward. I would have really like to see this series put forward without the major loss of clothing if only ended up detracted from the content of the plot and making serious situation rather silly isn the end. I understand that the audience for the series is that 16 to 25 male group, but there is also a latent fanbase of young women who loved the manga series and who would have really like this series if the girls managed to keep their cloths on.

Bottom line is that UQ Holder! is a fine continuation of the Negima series and also opens the door for more to come.

Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! -Take On Me- (anime review)

Title: Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! -Take On Me-

Director: Tatsuya Ishihara

Studio: Kyoto Animation

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23

U. S. Release Date: November 20th, 2018

Format: Blu-ray, Feature Film, 94 Minutes

Genre: Comedy, Slice of Life, Romance

Age Rating: TV 14

Overall Personal Rating: A

Synopsis:

Yuta and Rikka may have finally started to come to terms with the various delusions that have run their lives, but as their relationship becomes progressively more real, their development as a couple seems to be increasingly in danger of stalling out! When your relationship is partially the result of a series of fantasies, what can reality serve up that’s equal to the make-believe?

Rikka’s sister decides that she’s going to move to Italy and take Rikka with her, and the solution that Rikka and Yuta decide on is both improbably logical and unrealistically practical: They’re going to elope! For real! Get ready for the ultimate fantasy road trip as our two young would-be lovers take off a whirlwind tour of the real Japan in Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! -Take On Me-

Commentary:

Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! -Take On Me- takes us further along in the saga of Rikka and Yuta which finally gives us some real closure on their relationship in ways that make total sense and feel very natural for such an absurdist type of romance anime. Honestly, the struggle for these characters to deal with their chunibyo is worth the watch and at the same time begin to understand that the real world has a great deal to offer.

This installment of the series points us to a bright future for everyone and allows us to continue to like everyone for who they are and not what others might want them to be. Yuta may just be the only one that understands this more than anyone but he also appears to be further along on his road to maturity than the other, especially Rikka.

The real fun to the film is the way they all interact to help Rikka and Yuta evade Toka. The beauty is that there is a symmetry to everything that goes on and a blast of humor that does not deny the original series.

Overall Grade: A

I am often worried when I come across short films that could be nothing more than toss of money grabs for a series. In the case of Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! -Take On Me- it is clear from the very beginning that the intent is to tell even more of the store and find a wonderful stopping point for the story. Now I can’t be sure that the series is done with this film, but I would not be disappointed if it is. I feel like I can believe that they will all be fine as they mature and that Rikka will grow into a beautiful person who maintains a rich fertile imagination that will blend perfectly with Yuta’s pragmatism.

For all the fans of the series I know you will not be let down by Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! -Take On Me-.