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Synonyms: Kimi ni Todoke: From Me to You, Reaching You
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Oct 7, 2009 to Mar 31, 2010
Duration: 22 min. per episode
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or olderL represents licensing company
Score: 8.311 (scored by 93660 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
2 based on the top anime page.
Popular TagsNo tags found
Apr 1, 2010
At first, Kimi ni Todake drew me in before I saw its first frame of film with its story concept. Our heroine is Sawako, a sweet and gentle girl with an awkward personality and an uncanny resemblance to Sadako from The Ring. Desperately wanting others to understand her she is instead shunned and feared by her classmates. This all changes when she meets a boy named Kazehaya who is the first to truly see her and slowly she begins to draw herself out of her shell. The remaining story is one of self discovery as Sawako experiences the first feelings of love and friendship she has ever felt. While her situation is a bit contrived and not overly realistic, the way it is presented is so wonderfully sweet and beautiful that it is impossible not to love.
I firmly believe that in order to really fully appreciate just how special Kimi ni Todake is, you have to already be a veteran of at least a dozen or more of its shoujo peers. There are none of the usual tired clichés. Sawako isn’t the plain and perky heroine determined to get a man to fall for her who ignores her or treats her horribly. She isn’t out for revenge nor is she being pursued by a harem of bishounens with a desperate struggle to choose between them. Kazehaya isn’t a dick, for lack of a better term. He’s a guy who will be loved by viewers not because he’s hot, but because he’s just a really nice guy any girl would want to fall in love with and guys would want as a friend.
The feelings and situations presented to us are real and powerful but not in an overly dramatic way. Nobody has torturous family lives or tragic pasts or other situations that always feel forced in a way to create drama that could be better achieved with fantastic characters and storytelling. The concepts are simple, the pacing slow, and full of the required blushes and aw shucks moments. Much like its soft artwork and color palette, Kimi ni Todake is the kind of show you will sit back and relax too, forgetting about all the problems of your day.
This is not to say that it doesn’t have its faults. While just about every aspect of the series was wonderful to behold, the series already slow pace comes to an even greater crawl over the last 8-10 episodes. While I still enjoyed them immensely, I suspect some viewers will likely begin to lose patience at the lack of progress or action in the story. And while perhaps we are also being setup for a continuation at some point, since the manga is still ongoing, the ending was also not particularly ideal.
Sawako herself goes down as one of my all-time favorite characters. She is so completely earnest and innocent that she is impossible not to love. While her character concept is initially not all that unique she becomes so much more than just a socially awkward, shy, and moe girl. Everyone can find something to relate with her over and from a character development standpoint, the person she becomes by the end of the series is so remarkably different from her beginning that it’s truly amazing. Yet despite this enormous change she never deep down changes from what she really is at her core. Her closing monologue at the end of the show is a prime example of just how much she has grown.
Kazehaya is a rare breed for a romance series. First he is the one and only love interest. No reverse harems of bishies here to waste story time or antagonize the heroine. He is also unique in that outside series such as Kanon or Clannad, he is one of the only leads that looks and feels like a real person. He is never made out to be a caricature of the fantasies and dreams of young girls. He is not super wealthy, nor is he a famous athlete, or come from a notorious family. Sure he is really good looking, popular with the girls and the guys, and good at baseball but you never feel like these are things that he didn’t earn with his own merits. Unlike most of his anime contemporaries who have abrasive or aloof personalities but are still enormously popular because well they are supposed to be. They’re perfect men after all! His personality is the kind that draws people to him and his popularity is not just because he’s handsome. People like him because he's nice to them. What a novel idea!
While on the surface, Kazehaya and Sawako seem to be completely different people, deep down they both share the same confusing emotions and fears about the feelings each has for the other. The interaction between the two is truly special and lovely. Amazingly I never really lost my patience with them either or yell at the screen, “Oh come on just kiss her already!”
Kimi’s supporting cast is also quite remarkable. This is nowhere more evident than with Sawako’s new best friends, Ayane and Chizu. From the start of the story you never would have though these girls would have become her friends. They had almost written on their faces “villainess” and it was such a pleasant surprise to see these two develop into perhaps the best shoujo best friends I have seen yet. They are so completely different from one another that it is a bit surprising they are friends. Ayane is the beautiful, fashionable temptress, while Chizu is the butch and athletic type. Their reactions to Sawako kind of mirror the way the audience will perceive her. There bonds grow stronger as they experience things together, and overcome some adversity. They were truly a joy to watch.
Other characters come and go but are no less impactful to the story. The only real rival, Kurumi, who appears in the middle portions of the story never, outstays her welcome and while she would technically serve as the series villainess, she never really feels to me like a villain. Shockingly Sawako’s family life is also quite normal, she neither has a tragic home situation or a perverted father, and they are both loving and normal parents (both to her and to each other).
Artistically Kimi really shines. Its soft colors and artwork just match the beauty and sweetness in the story perfectly. It does a good job of mixing in comedic art along with its beautiful scenery to make every episode visually appealing and smile inducing. This is even more brought out with the spectacular musical score and cast. Mamiko Noto seems to have been born to play this role. It’s a typical character type for her, one that we have heard from her many times, but this will be one that fans will remember for years and years to come. I can’t say enough about the OP theme, I was instantly in love with from the first chorus and its animation is tremendous. I also found the ED to be equally perfect, though I suspect Chara’s gravelly voice to be unappealing to some.
Overall, Kimi ni Todake is easily a top 5 series for me and one of the best shows of the decade. It was immediately appealing to me from the first episode and I am extremely sad to see it end. This is how more romance shows should be done and is not to be missed by anyone who likes the genre in even the slightest bit. It really doesn’t get much better than this one.
Jul 23, 2010
Kimi ni Todoke starts off as an anime that could make you wonder if you’re actually watching said series. The very first scene is practically a half-horror scene attempted by the animators to make you understand in a snap what kind of person the main character is. Kuronuma Sawako: a girl who looks a bit gloomy and scares away most of the people she’s nearby to. The reason because of that is a simple one: she’s very easily misunderstood. The tone of her voice sounds like a ghost that waited a thousand years in a closet and finally sees someone to scare away. Sawako may not have waited a thousand years but she does scare away people with her awkward attempt to greet someone, which earned her the nickname ''Sadako'' (the ghost from the movie ''The Ring'').
It’s natural that any person watching until now will get a feeling of sympathy. We see and hear things that play in Sawako’s mind, and in Sawako’s mind only. She doesn’t mean to scare anyone away. She doesn’t want to make anyone feel uncomfortable. Even her life motto (''A good deed a day'') sounds like it’s something made up by a loving person who likes to help. This is by far the biggest message the story is trying to convey: no matter how good your intentions are deep inside, if it’s not coming out in the proper way, nobody will see it on the outside. Sawako is struggling with this harsh truth that tackles her every single day. She has no real friends, feels very lonely at times and has a hard time understanding social situations not knowing how to react. It all feels very sad for Sawako and she is just trying to fit in and help people. But she can’t because of her way of conveying a message to another person; she hasn’t learned to do that properly.
If there is a second message this anime tries to portray, it has to be the message of hope. Because even for Sawako, light in the dark tunnel of social situations can be seen. You could say that Sawako actually is a clean slate of life that hasn’t been written on. The good things and the bad. Because that slate is almost empty, she’s never learned to interact, to recognize backstabbers and to clear up a misunderstanding. But also, she’s never learned to talk behind someone’s back, to steal anything or even to spread rumors.
Sawako is unique. An empty book that can be written in with all the things that life teaches us. That is one of the most brilliant ways to begin a story about an individual that grows up and steadily learns new things.
It’s actually unusual to write so much about a character in a show, even if it’s one of the most complex main characters. The story and the thought behind the story is what should be elaborately written about. But here, the character IS actually the story. Of course it’s possible to name all the events that happened in the show and write a bunch of thoughts about that. The truth is however that the story itself is very thin. And the best thing about that: it does not matter at all.
Which brings me to my next point. To understand why the story doesn’t matter, we have to look at the pacing of the show. Most stories tend to start off with a bang. Then there are some small events that explain all the things about that big happening and move the story forward. Then there is another peak in the story and the cycle repeats itself.
Kimi ni Todoke is nothing like that. You must realize that the pacing is extremely slow in this show. But the joke is that you must ask yourself the question if it matters to you. The story is about Sawako experiencing all the things in life that almost anyone can relate to. From your first classmate ever sitting next to you, to your first love in high school. It’s that emotional ride that makes this anime so darn special. And the pacing has a very, very important role in delivering those emotions. Basically, it actually makes it possible to notice all the small talk that the characters are having, the fun moments that they’re experiencing, the flowing rivers of sadness that are shown and even the growing love between characters. And most importantly: it’s possible to notice Sawako coming out of her shell. It’s because the pacing is that slow, you can notice and appreciate those things that come by in the anime.
In terms of art, it’s really crucial that you watch this show with an open mind without prejudices. Keep in mind that this is a ''shoujo''. This means that it’s a story with the point of view of a girl and most likely with some ''girly'' elements. But if you manage to overcome these things (or are a girl yourself), Kimi ni Todoke is a breath of fresh air to watch. While the animation may not be the greatest you will ever see, the art is amazing. It’s one of those anime which captures the feel of the manga almost perfectly. The scenery is beautiful and everything has this ''fresh'' feel, as if you’re diving in a nice cold bath after sweating.
Most of the time in animated shows, either the characters are well drawn or the backgrounds are. Kimi ni Todoke does both well with maybe the backgrounds being a tiny bit better drawn than the characters. Cute bubbles and sparkles pop up randomly in many scenes but actually fit very snuggly in the story strangely enough. And the people who composed the musical score deserve applause. The music captures those emotions portrayed beautifully and manages to play as a nice ear massage if listened to.
It’s too bad that Kimi ni Todoke has one of the most banal summaries you will ever see. Ever. Anyone who decides to watch an anime based on the summary he or she has read will most likely miss this gem of a show. If one day someone will invent a way to include snippets of emotions in a summary, Kimi ni Todoke will stand at the top of the charts and that inventor will hopefully be rich and famous. It’s also too bad that the anime is over. The manga is still going strong so there is hope for a second season; there are literally many who are begging for one. It’s not possible to fully share in words what this anime makes so special, it’s an experience you’ll have to call your own. And because you can relate to almost anyone in the show, it will give you that honest feeling. That feeling which makes you believe that life has more in store, that you CAN move forward and change things. Sawako manages to do it, and so does everyone. read more
Jul 21, 2014
***WARNING: I'm not going to spoil anything major, but some of the things I am going to say may be seen as MINOR spoilers
A score of 6/10, for me, means that I did not dislike the story at all, but it was not anything that made me jump out of my chair in excitement. Allow me to explain why. Don't get angry because my opinion differs from yours. I have read countless reviews and comments regarding how this anime tells a sweet story and is unlike the other cliche romances out there. I mean, yeah, I guess the story could be considered kind of sweet and kind of unique (?), but half the time something I thought would make for a sweet moment was about to happen, the characters just backed out and didn't do anything whatsoever. I mean, I get that the romance element of this anime was meant not to feel rushed, like many conventional romances are, but a lot of the time, I got frustrated at the characters for missing so many perfect opportunities to do something romantic. Yeah, it had some sweet moments, I can't deny that. Yes, I respect the writers for trying to make a love story that doesn't feel rushed and haphazardly written, but I couldn't help but feel as if the plot was just dragging along at some points. It just felt too slow for me a lot of the time. Did that mean I was in totality disappointed by the story? Definitely not, but I do stand by my opinion that it could've spared some awkward missed chances at some well-deserved plot development at times. I mean, there's something to be said when the ONE ROMANCE that the whole story is focused towards doesn't even happen in 25 episodes.
Another thing I hear being said quite often is that Kimi ni Todoke is great in that it avoids so many of the cliche elements that can be seen in a romance anime typical of the genre. Actually, I can't disagree with this. Yes, in my opinion, if you're looking for a romance anime that steers away from the norm expected from shoujo romance, Kimi ni Todoke will feel refreshing for you.
Really, the 6/10 I gave the story does not warrant my recommendation of this anime for the story alone; there are, though, other elements of the anime for which I can recommend the anime to fanatics of the genre. I'll get to those momentarily.
The art style used in Kimi ni Todoke is nothing short of uniqueness at its finest. Actually, I can't think of another anime that I've seen with an art style quite like that of Kimi ni Todoke. It seems like an animation style that belongs to Kimi ni Todoke only. What's so unique about it? The characters ACTUALLY HAVE NOSES! Actually, that's not the only thing, but weird facial proportions are something that I have a pet peeve for in other anime (lol). I can't really explain well what makes this art style unlike others, but if you have seen it or started watching it, you'll have an idea of what I mean.
The music in Kimi ni Todoke actually may have been my favorite aspect of the show. I mean, since you see this often in anime, it's not really amazing that the music they insert always fits the moment perfectly, but nonetheless, the anime is great in that regard. The opening, conveniently named Kimi ni Todoke, matches the anime very well and is a touching song. I'd say it's on my top 10 favorite openings list. The ending, though, I like even better. At the end of some episodes, they'll have a really sad or really tense moment, and then cut to the ending, and it just slapped me in the face every time. I guess it just really encompasses the romance element of the anime that you want to happen SO BADLY. To give you some perspective, this anime actually had some of my favorite music out of any anime I've heard so far.
No matter how much complaining I manage to do in this review, I can't really say much negative about the characters, other than the fact that they miss so many golden opportunities to make a romantic moment happen. Sawako, the main character, has become one of my favorite characters in romance anime. There is definitely something to be said about how infinite her will to put those she cares about before herself shows in this anime. And actually, contrary to what a lot of people say, I really like how oblivious she can be at times. It builds onto my respect for Sawako as a character, plus, seeing how her obliviousness affects the people she interacts with is really something to enjoy. Kazehaya is a likable character as well. It was good to see how much he cares for people no matter what anybody thinks about them, especially for Sawako. I like Ayane and Chizu as well. I mean, almost all of the main and supporting characters in this show show some promising development and are likable in their own ways. There really wasn't anyone that I didn't like, which is a great thing.
Overall, I wouldn't recommend this story to every anime viewer, but for the right person, this anime could definitely could be one of the most heartwarming romances out there. Yes, it can be considered something unique among romance anime, but I thought it was a bit too slow of a story. The characters, art, and sound, definitely made up for where the story seemed to be a bit lacking, though. This anime may not have been the perfect fit for me as a viewer, but don't let that discourage you, because it actually does feel like an anime all of its own, in that I can't really think of anything that's much like it. But, hey, all this is just my opinion, check it out yourself if you're curious. read more
Apr 13, 2014
I will say, several of the first episodes brought me to sappy weepy tears. The main character, Sawako, is a lonely girl whose attempts to make friends routinely fail due to her outwardly intimidating appearance. The tried and true "don't judge a book by its cover" will be shoved in your face for multiple episodes as you learn Sawako is actually very sweet, and she usually interprets the horrible treatment she receives from her peers as other people being cooler than her.
Those were the moments that really got to me in the beginning - I haven't seen a whole lot of slice of life anime that's dealt with bullying, and I felt like it was done very well here.
I will be honest, past that, this show became more of a guilty pleasure for me (as it is with most Shoujo. Why can't I just embrace my femininity??) and I felt embarrassed to be watching it the more I saw. Kimi ni Todoke suffers from the run-of-the-mill Shoujo traits that can be extremely jarring for someone who may have difficulty getting into it.
For example, people will have VERY bland conversations, but the characters involved will feel the need to gasp with widened eyes after every line the other speaks.
A: Hi B-chan
*animators zoom in dramatically on B-chan's mouth/eyes*
B: A-kun, I-I-I like your pickles. *blush*
A: *small gasp, animators draw hair-shadow in replacement of eyes*
In all seriousness, this show is good fun: it doesn't take itself too seriously, there's plenty of humour, and it's quite cute. I'll be following up with the manga to see where it goes after the second season, but I didn't feel like this one left a huge impact on my soul that will influence my cognitive functioning for the next 12 years.
If you like most of the Shoujos you've seen, I'd say check it out. If you don't, don't. read more
Feb 22, 2011
So, despite the fact that I am not suited for this anime, I continued to the 2nd and 3rd episode anyway out of curiosity on what this anime had to offer.
And before I realized it, I couldn't bring myself to stop watching this anime...!
Kimi ni Todoke really changed my view on shoujo romance.
The heroine, Kuronuma Sawako is the most kind-hearted, soft-mannered heroine you'll ever see in the entire anime universe. Not because she is stunningly beautiful, not because she is wealthy, not because she is very popular in school either. The fact is, she is an ordinary high school girl who lives in a very normal environment.
What makes her special is her personality. She is the type that would never wish for someone else's misery. Being a hard-working student, family-loving daughter, and caring friend, none of us would dislike her. Her true happiness is to be useful to her friends and family. Even her motto is "Do a good deed everyday". Despite that, she is not a typical weak kind of girl you usually see in another shoujo anime. At times she can stand for herself without depending on anyone. And she will never, ever tell a lie even if it's to save her own skin. She will cheer her friends at times of need, and will cry for someone else's sadness.
On the other hand, our male main character is Kazehaya Shouta, the most popular guy in school. He is very lively and willing to talk to anyone, though deep inside he is quite soft, shy, and hard to understand. From the outside, he may looks very cheerful and happy, but even himself has his own weaknesses and flaws which is very normal for a human to have.
There is no one in this anime which is too perfect or too evil by all means. They're all normal humans, each with their own flaws and emotions, which is interesting because it often allows us to reflect ourselves in them.
For the story, contrary to what most people say about this anime, It is NOT a typical shoujo romance story about popular guy who falls for the unpopular heroine at first sight. Yes, those elements do appear inside this anime, but in totally different pace. Unlike other fairy-tale like stories, Kimi ni Todoke is not in a rush. It seems rather slow, but it isn't. When you start to think that an episode seems too slow (some people states that the winter episodes seems rather mellow, just like what a winter should be), try to review what has happened in that episode. You will realize that there's already much information flowing through your head without you realizing it.
Yes, Kimi ni Todoke isn't as typical and slow as they say.
Its seems as it is saying to us, "Love is not a rush. Just take it slow and enjoy the bitter-sweet moments of love". read more
May 21, 2014
Do not judge a book by its cover. Do not judge an anime by its synopsis. By its looks, Kimi ni Todoke is a typical shoujo anime, regarding romance and school life. However, if you give it a chance, you will understand for sure that it has a very important meaning deep inside: that you should not leave your friends or your lover to leave or go away. It contains some heartbreaking romance and scenes, while some other shoujo anime do not. And that was the strongest point of KnT, making it attractive and meaningful, even to guys like me.
The storyline of this anime is pretty simple and a fact that does not change in many shoujo anime. It is about a 16-year-old girl, Sawako Kuronuma, who is misunderstood by her classmates and, actually, is not liked by anyone. Suddenly, a popular and refreshing boy, Kazehaya Shouta, appears and changes her life, making her meet people and eventually make some friends. Sawako admires Shouta and, because of her timid personality, she does not understand how Shouta really think of herself. Typical story regarding a typical shoujo anime, but well-executed and sweet.
Now for the characters. Imo, this section made this anime a great success. The main and supporting characters are so different from each other, yet they combine well and make a perfect combination.
Sawako is one of my favorite characters in anime. She is so innocent, shy and honest that I could not bring myself to not love her. Despite her being avoided by her classmates, she is still earnest and does not hate or despise them. In fact, she loves everyone and she wants to talk with everyone. The thing that I loved the most on Sawako is the characters development, from start to finish. I loved the thing that she had changed that much throughout the series. I was stunned by how much mature she had become by the end of the series. And I thought that this was the keypoint on making a character likeable and even lovable.
Kazehaya. on the other hand, is a refreshing and popular boy, but he is stating that he is an egoist and is not refreshing after all. However, he is admired by a lot of people and he helps everyone that is in need. The sweet way he behaves to Sawako makes him even greater, making him a likeable and different kind of character as well. He is the exact opposite of the other main character, but they combine perfectly together and make a very nice main character duo.
Another thing that I loved in Kimi ni Todoke is that even the supporting characters are taking a very active role in the entire anime series. Chizuru and Ayane, Sawako's best friends, were not thought to become Sawako's best friends, but they did, because they understood her character and personality and they helped her in many ways, making them very active throughout the series. Other supporting characters, like Kurumizawa Ume and Kento Miura, helped the anime flow as well, by being the "antagonists", the one loving Kazehaya and the other having a slight interest in Sawako. Even the supporting characters were developed superbly, making the characters' section surpass greatness.
The sound and the artline of Kimi ni Todoke were very well handled as well. The beautiful scenes and sceneries matched the sweetness and love of the anime perfectly. The characters were animated very well and Sawako's smiles were some of the best smiles I have ever watched. The soundtracks and OPs of KnT were extremely beautiful (Its first OP is one of my favorites) and the background music was charming. I could not ask more from the art and sound developers.
Now, I will jot down the score of each section:
Story: 10 (Masterpiece, handled perfectly)
Art: 9 (Great, fitting the anime very well)
Sound: 10 (Absolutely awesome, making the anime sweeter)
Characters: 10 (Heartbreaking characters in a heartbreaking story, great development, even on the supporting characters)
Enjoyment: 9 (Enjoyed very much, sometimes it was slow, but it still appealed to me)
Overall: 10! (Masterpiece, you can rarely find shoujo anime series like this one)
To conclude, I want to say that KnT is a highly-valued anime, it has a really important meaning deep inside and it can represent a real life. So, even if you do not like shoujo, or if you are a guy, take a look at it and give it a chance. Hopefully, you will not regret it.
Nov 27, 2009
One word, superb. I got hooked up since episode one because this Anime looks like it's real, and by real, I mean no swords, magics, etc. It portrays love and friendship as you can see these elements in every episodes. Also, I love where this Anime is going. It might get cheesy sometimes, but they did it so well, that you have no choice but to go with the flow and be affectionate.
The Art/Animation was outstanding. I loved everything. It was well drawn/animated. Every detail and objects stood up, even the surroundings, and the characters. Also, adding a chibi form of every characters made it more enjoyable. You can't help it but laugh after seeing their chibi forms.
The sound was perfect. I loved the OP/ ED songs. It fits perfectly with the Anime. Also, everytime something happens, the background music/sound always fits into it, and because of that, it emphasizes the event even more.
You can't help it but love our main girl, Sawako, and others. There's nothing to hate. Everyone has their own emotions, characteristics, which made everyone unique and be part of the Anime. They also give spotlight to Supporting Characters, which is good, in my opinion. They don't focus on 2 characters, but everyone, which is great.
I was really entertained while watching this. I didn't get bored at all. This Anime is one of the Anime that I've seen that made a good job combining the elements (Comedy, Drama, and Romance). They didn't fail in doing that. You can find those elements in each episode. Some episodes are really relaxing, which can make you smile or laugh the entire time, while some episodes are really touching that you can't help it but eith cry or be teary.
I recommend this Anime to everyone. Guys, don't be scared to watch this. I'm a guy and I find this Anime incredible. I'm 100% straight, don't worry. I've only seen 8 episodes but I can tell that it's going to be awesome from beginning to end. It's a masterpiece.
Also, this is my first review, so please bear with my mistakes. :3 read more
Oct 8, 2013
Sawako is the ideal pure girl, whose story of overcoming social barriers is truly uplifting and relatable. Kazehaya is an admirable, outgoing yet has an inner shell of insecurity like most teenagers. Seeing them freak out, laugh, smile, and cry gives the viewer an emotional connection with the characters.
The art diverges between comical and "normal", which I enjoyed though others may want more of the normal art style. However, they choose the right moments for each. The soundtrack for the show was very well done in the sense that it gave me goosebumps for each emotional scene. The plot develops phenomenally as far as romance animes are concern.
Personally: I could relate to Sawako's social development and I love how pure she is. I could also relate to being outgoing like Kazehaya, yet being nervous around the one you like. The only thing that could make it better is including more seasons. I prefer it over toradora and lovely complex because it is more believable and they develop the characters better in my opinion. It is the best romance anime I have ever seen.
Jun 23, 2014
I suppose it's also because I could relate to the main female character. I was really shy in school and I had rumors about me and people who harassed me. I never really had friends or a "prince charming" like boyfriend, but it felt nice to be able to relate to a character so much. I'm so happy the anime was so much like the manga, so even though the anime is over, I can continue on with the manga as if I'm still watching the anime. read more
May 30, 2014
Communication relies on a message from one human to another being interpreted correctly. Sawako Kuronama—a beautiful, selfless, misunderstood girl—enters high school with the same middle school social status she was given: a ghost. Not an invisible ghost, but a scary living, walking one. Her abnormal facial expressions and difficulty socializing landed her a spot as an outcast. She's exceptionally friendly and attempts to say hello to everyone she meets, but her initial—slightly funny—facial expressions cause them to flee away. That is, until the catalyst known as Shouta Kazehaya enters Sawako's life. He single handedly gives her the "ability" to destroy her comfort zone and widen her world. Don't be mistaken though, he is not the all-powerful male protagonist who manages to alone save her. Sawako's best friends Ayane Yano and Chizuru Yoshida are precious gems who stay by her side regardless of situation, helping her grow.
Love. Platonic, Romantic, Unrequited. Love. This is a romance anime, love is expected. What I did not expect was how well platonic love was portrayed. The protagonists and their supporting friends are genuinely good people. It is not easy to create such realistic relatable characters.
For starters, Sawako is truly selfless. Not in an annoying, pathetic way; she is not a burden. She always attempts to create a clear line of communication, probably because she knows how it misunderstandings can be so cruel. Aesthetically, she is relatively pretty with long, black hair and bangs that suite her face. She is still new to social interaction, so sometimes she takes messages too literally, but in the end if it's important, she will find out through her own will. Sawako doesn't attract attention by means of pity or sympathy, she draws in people one they take the opportunity to know her. As she begins to become closer to her newfound friends, her character rapidly develops.
Shouta Kazehaya, every girl's love interest, falls for Sawako. However, the romance is not immediate—in fact it's awfully slow paced to be frank—but it's not boring either. The success of a romance anime heavily relies on the male protagonist too, and Kazehaya exceeds expectations. As a handsome, outgoing boy with a killer smile; he has girls fawning over him. His cute, polite personality and kind heart earn him a popular position in school. As an active member of the community, he his generally liked by everyone and receives little-to-no hate. He's almost equally as flustered as Sawako during their encounters, a "refreshing" factor. Unlike many other stereotypical male protagonist, he blushes, and get's embarrassed too. Shockingly, as much as Sawako looks up to Kazehaya, he is equally as memorized by her as she is by him.
Not only does the male protagonist surpass my expectations, Sawako's new found friends Ayane and Chizuru are remarkably impressive.
Ayane, a beautiful adult-like classmate of Sawako's, is exceptionally mature and intelligent. She wears plenty of makeup, has full lips and a great figure, and could easily be dismissed as a "popular" pretty girl, but instead she opts for the "badass" look. Her perceptive abilities are impressive and she's an awfully considerate person. Being slightly more mature, Ayune dates plenty of older people and has the most "experience" out of the group. She has no issues socializing and more often than many others thinks before she speaks.
Chizuru—a tall, strong, and athletic girl—is probably the most friendly and second most emotional of the bunch. She's very expressive, not in a rude way but in a funny way. The best way to describe her thought process most of the time would be "simple". She isn't stupid or any of the sorts, but she's nowhere near as observant as Ayane.
Both Chizuru and Ayane were best friends in middle school, and Sawako managed to fit into the group perfectly. They value Sawako's friendship and help her expand her horizons. Initially, they were a little freaked out by Sawako, but once they were able to get to interact with her, they immediately accepted her. Realizing that Sawako was actually friendly and tremendously kind-hearted, the two considered her a good friend. They are extremely reliable friends and worthy of Sawako's admiration.The pair—especially Ayane—often assists Sawako with her relationship with Kazehaya. In fact, if it weren't for Ayane I doubt Sawako would have the courage to even reach out to Kazehaya.
Ryu Sanada is the fifth link to the group of five. He's a quiet, observant, baseball playing boy. If he's not likeable then he's certainly not dislikeable. He provides great advice and blunt answers. . Ryu also is willing to listen to any of friend's problems. He's considered a part of the group and is invited to all activities involving the friends. Not to mention the fact that his room is most-often the area most used to host the parties/get-togethers.
Her parents are really supportive and kind.
There are plenty comical moments that caused me to burst out laughing. Sawako's facial expressions, and sometimes simple misunderstandings are hilarious. The art is pretty, and switches at times to a more cartoonish style, especially when facial expressions are made. Characters are well designed, the main ones are all aesthetically pleasing.
The OP and ED are pleasant, good lyrics and an enjoyable voice. Character voices are great and fitting.
To me, the best most notable aspect of this anime would be not the romance, but the bonds between the characters. Sawakos' development is outstanding. Her two friends Ayane and Chizuru don't feel uncomfortable at all around the "awkward" Sawako, and Sawako isn't an introvert, she's just new to socializing.
The romance itself is quite slow, but certainly does develop over time. Kazehaya seems to be slightly more confident than Sawako, but not confident enough to bluntly confront her. Sawako misses a couple of hidden messages, being the slightly oblivious girl she is. The two are a great couple, if the pacing of the romance were a little quicker the anime would have soared.
If you have any interest in the Romance or Shoujo genre, then I highly suggest watching this anime. Though don't come in for the Romance, think of it as a nice sprinkle on a Slice of Life anime.
Thanks for reading!
Apr 17, 2013
Kimi ni Todoke is a Shoujo in the purest sense of the word. To call it anything else not only sells the show itself short, but whatever genre it gets lumped in with as well. Its foundation is so concrete, and unabashedly in love with its forefathers, that it's almost not even a point of discussion. It does everything a typical Shoujo should do. Timid, loner, socially awkward female protagonist? Check. Said protagonist falling in love with the most popular boy in her school/class? Check. A token bitch girl who is also in love with the protagonists boyfriend? Check. Said bitch hatching an elaborate scheme to win over the protagonists boyfriend? Check. Side characters that exist for comic relief, with only one real, major, subplot? Check. Christmas episode? Check. Cultural Festival? Well no, but there is a sports festival that's used in much the same way. Small, multi-episode, arcs that are only tangentially related to one another? Check. I could go on all day about this stuff, but I think the point is fairly self-evident: Todoke has no real aspirations to dramatically alter the formulas or structures of its genre. Instead, more often than not (which we will get to later), it seeks to validate these tropes and give them the credit they deserve. The protagonist Sawako herself is a great example of this. She fits the shy, introverted, Shoujo protagonist mold to a "t" (or rather a "d"). While she does have unique, defining, traits that do make her stand out from the horde of other shy, and introverted, Shoujo protagonists, these differences do not define her as a character. Everything from her appearance (save perhaps the excessive hair length) to her personality is still firmly rooted in that proverbial mold. The only difference is that she is fleshed out just enough, such that she could pass off as a truly authentic human being. Her actions are always, and I repeat ALWAYS, within her character. The subtle embellishments made to her character just allow her to never have to break character. The amount of flexibility added from the changes to her mold, as well as the characters around her, make it so the work can remain as true to its archetypes as possible, while maintaining a distinct presence and letting the plot flow as naturally as possible. In short it made a necessary sacrifice in order to improve upon its foundation. This goes for almost every trope in the show. From the rest of the cast, to the events that take place, everything (for the most part) is only slightly altered from the blueprints of the genre. Beyond giving the work a slightly more distinct style, these alterations also draw attention to the tropes in the first place. I can't even begin to count the number of times I saw something happen, made a prediction, was either right or wrong (it usually didn't really matter), and then reflected on what I had just watched. The scene where Chizuru went on a walk with Ryuu's brother is a prime example of this. I was waiting for the moment where he would do something bad, or at least morally ambiguous, because, you know, that's just the thing that happens in Shoujos. It gives a reason for the protagonist in question to give up on their idol. However, throughout the scene, as well as the show, he doesn't really do anything but good for Chizuru, instead acknowledging Chizuru as somewhat of a spiritual sister. I actually had to take a minute, pause the episode, and digest exactly what had happened. After a few, quiet, minutes of thought I came to the conclusion that the scene actually still had the same desired effect, and outcome, as the run of the mill, predatorial meetings that are so commonplace in the genre. It both created, and resolved, drama, and gave the protagonist a legitimate call to action. Throughout the scene I was fully aware of the trope being used in the moment, as made obvious by my premonitions, however the work managed to somewhat trick me into thinking that something else had actually happened after the fact. It wasn't until I actually sat down (or rather stayed sitting) are really thought about what was taking place, that I saw the scene for what it was. It was exactly what I thought it was, just turned on its head. It was a clever little trick that really got me to think about that that scene was meant to do not only in Todoke itself, but in Shoujos in general. By repurposing the plot point to fit the story, it offered a valid case for its possible effectiveness when executed correctly. A trope that I had initially thought was played out, now seems to have just a little more life thanks to this show.
With that portion of the gushing out of the way, I would be remiss if I didn't mention the other side of the coin. Just because Todoke is so in love with the Shoujo archetype, does not mean that it doesn't see the general shortcomings of some of its most popular tropes. The show will disown a trope just as quickly as it embraces one. One of the most notable examples of this, as well as the first time I noticed it myself, was with the conflict that many Shoujos spend a loin's share of their runtime resolving: rumors. Yes Todoke does in fact have a typical "Shoijo Bitch", and yes one of the early conflicts in the show does revolve around lies she is spreading about the Sawako's friends in order to break up their friendship because it's getting in between her and her future boyfriend. The blame for starting these rumors obviously falls on Sawako, because obviously nobody has the mental capacity to remember who actually told them the story, and her friends catch wind of it. Through a few misunderstandings, and awkward conversations, the trust of Sawako's friends start to wane as the suspect that she might have possibly been involved in this. At this point most shows would devote the next three to five episodes playing this drama out before the protagonist was eventually exonerated. It's generally a tedious process that is what turns most anime fans I know away from Shoujo in the first place. However the way Todoke handles this conflict is remarkable to say the least. Instead of having the friends wildly jump to conclusions in order to force some drama out of the show, they instead simply have them do what any logical sane person would do from the start: they simply ask Sawako, who has been nothing but 100% honest with them up until that point, if she started the rumors. Sawako says no, and that's good enough for them, and the viewer. While the trope itself isn't dumb, they did include it in the show after all, its execution does bring up an obvious point. Most of the time this trope is simply misused, and just thrown in to cover up whatever deep seeded issue a show has. Most of the time it only adds superficial drama when used, and is constantly dragged out for far to long. Just as I reflected of the scene with Ryuu's brother, this moment made me give another long hard mental deconstruction of this trope. The small amount of payoff, solving the superficial problem of the group being split up, for the amount of time it takes makes a fairly obvious statement about the writers disposition about the trope. It's elegant, while still being obvious. While Todoke only does this kind of thing from time to time, it helps reinforce the structural aspects of its genre does embrace. It lets the viewer know that while Todoke does love being a Shoujo, it is still cautious in its decisions of what to accept whole-heartedly.
The only real, serious, issue I had with this show was pacing. If I am being completely honest with myself the show does sag a little bit around the Sports Festival arc. When I actually watched this show, I put it on the back-burner around episode 12 or so because I felt that the show was just kind of treading water. In this arc, the token bitch character is given her chance to grow and evolve, but despite that she stays fairly stagnant over the five or so episode arc. It's the same arc we've all seen a million times, and Todoke really didn't really do much different. Stop me if you heard this one before, but, one of the most popular girls in the school has really been masking her abusive personality all along. To make matters worse Todoke pops the true personality card early in the arc, and all that's really left to see is her plan fall apart. It wouldn't be so awkward if it wasn't so obvious she was going to fail. Much like the fools gold arc in the second season of Spice and Wolf, there is really no reason to think that the cannon pairing will be split apart for any reason. The buildup is bland, and the payoff is also lacking. They even go as far as to make a big deal out of establishing the bitch as a token rival, but then never do anything with her again (within the season, calm down). This coupled with the awkwardly placed recap episode make the second quarter of this show a little bit of a drag compared to the rest of the content.
I could mention the art by Production I.G. or the fantastic voice work, but I don't really think those points need to be discussed, so I'll just close out. The simple fact is that Kimi ni Todoke does far to many things extremely well to really level any just criticism at it. The sag I mentioned was really only a sag in comparison to the rest of the show, and by general Shoujo standards it was by no means bad. On the flipside the show redefined what it really means to be a Shoujo. It deconstructs the very structure of the genre, offering its own criticism, while offering an enjoyable ride on the surface. To top it all off it executes everything with such sincerity it's hard not to fall in love. Even though this show takes a bit of prior knowledge to truly appreciate, it is still one of the ideal entry points to the genre as well. It is truly a must watch in every aspect of the word, and has set a standard for the shows that came after it. If for some reason you haven't seen it, and are digging deep enough for this review, just watch it, it's probably not worse than anything else you're gonna watch this season. read more
Aug 28, 2013
I would say that this whole anime from both a plot and aesthetic perspective drove home this coming-of-age period, where everything is so new and exciting and scary at the same time.
Saweko is such a great character, you can't help but root for her! I normally like take charge type A-personalities but there is just something so endearing about her earnestness and her desire to be understood that you find yourself cheering every triumph no matter how small. You have to admire her for never being afraid of trying, despite the past rejections, and hurtful experience she still is optimistic and believes that if she does her best, things will work out. Beyond the romance, this is the story of a girl who is just discovering who she is, and is just beginning to understand the bonds of friendship and love that ties us to those around us.
I felt the story's emphasis on these small gestures - whether a word or deed to be a powerful reminder in never underestimating the difference you can make on another person's life with such a seemingly simple act. From Kazehaya's kindness in giving Saweko a shot, to hurtful rumors and misunderstandings the ripple effects are felt during the entire series.
I really loved the friendships formed by Saweko, the way she slowly realized what it means to make friends, and become part of a group who accepted her for her she was. Not only that but they truly cared about her happiness and did everything they could to help, while pushing her to take chances while always letting her take things at her own pace. I found Ayane to be especially wonderful, one of my favorite friend characters to date. Pin - the crazy homeroom teacher was also hilarious, I really loved the scenes he was in, they made me laugh out loud.
The romance that develops is slow and sweet, each moment of intimacy and trust building on each other. It's nice to see two nice people circle each other, in a courtship that was based in trust and respect. To truly be seen by another, that's really the best we can all hope for.
The one downside was at times I did grow a little impatient with the misunderstandings (CONFESS ALREADY), but at the end it was worth it. I loved watching this little group's high-school journey progress and felt an attachment to them that makes me think this is one Anime I'll be rewatching soon.
I should note as well, that while the ending is a little unresolved, that there is a second season that ties everything up nicely, so don't be discouraged.
May 4, 2013
the story is generic, as you can find many more animes with similar plots and storylines. however, the way it's told is what makes it stand out or not. i've made recommendations for this anime, comparing them to sukitte ii na yo and tonari no kaibutsu-kun as i saw many parallel and contrasting features between KNT and those two animes.
in terms of animation design, it reflected animation seen in sukitte and tonari. although in general it was more similar to the former, but had more comical aspects to it.
the plot of KNT more likely resembled that of tonari because it was a lot more lighthearted and funny in comparison to sukitte. the plot in all three animes however, follow a similar storyline. none of the male and female leads get their romantic relationship rolling until towards the end. all three animes had female leads confused and questioning their feelings toward the male leads.
the animes had similar character set ups. outcast females that gain friends through being open with the male leads. all females had a small group of girlfriends with the addition of close male friends from the male side.
overall, i find these animes enjoyable to watch, despite potential repetitive aspects. KNT is a good mix of both sukitte and tonari, i would say its more funny than either of them though.
what strikes me as different about this anime though, is that there's a second season. i havent watched it yet but plan on doing so soon. i think a second season will allow for the romantic relationship to develop further than these typical animes. with sukitte and tonari, the series ends just has the leads are confronting their feelings. so im interested to see how far KNT will take that. read more
Aug 19, 2013
Love is a pretty powerful thing, isn't it? I've been in love before, and for those of you who haven't experienced love first-hand, I can honestly say that it changes you. There are a lot of romance animes out there, but very, VERY few of them have actually given me a good idea of what love is really like. We have shows like Date A Live, Love Hina, and Shuffle! All of those are classified as "Romance", but do any of them actually tell you what love really means? Now, we take a look at shows like Clannad and Kanon. Those are also classified as "Romance", and they give you a good idea of what love is like. Kimi ni Todoke is one of those animes, and in my opinion, it's one of the best romance animes of all time. So, without further ado, let's get this review started, shall we?
Enter Sawako, your residential ghost... well, sort of. Her classmates misunderstand her. They think she's the type of person that performs rituals and can speak to ghosts. Well, she's not. She's a sweet, shy, kind-hearted girl that everyone just needs to get to know in order to understand her better. Now, enter Kazehaya, one of the most popular boys in school, and also one of the nicest people you could meet in your life. He treats everyone fairly, and he's always looking to make friends. On the day of the high school entrance exams, the two meet. Ever since then, Sawako has been drawn to him, hoping to one day become his friend. Over time, the two gradually become closer, as well as the rest of her class and her. She starts making friends, and people start liking her a lot more. Of course, there are always challenges along the way, ranging from lies, rivals of love, and heartbreak. At first glance, it might not seem like the most original anime out there. Trust me when I say this, it honestly is, and I enjoyed all of it.
Kimi ni Todoke was brought to you by Studio I.G, and was directed by Hiro Kaburaki. You might recognize Studio I.G from other pieces of work such as Appleseed XIII, FLCL, and the ever so popular Ghost in a Shell series, and if you've seen Zenryoku Usagi, Hiro Kaburaki directed it. Anyways, the artwork was great. I liked all the character designs and the animations were good. That's one of the things I like about Shoujo animes, they give a realistic feel to the art style.
As most of you know, Kimi ni Todoke does not have an English Dub... yet. Due to it's popularity in the Animeverse, the hopes of a Dub may be answered someday, but for now, all we have, are these awesome Subs. Yes, awesome. All of the voice acting was done professionally, and it was filled with passion and an overall likableness. The first voice actress I immediately recognized was Mamiko Noto, who had voiced Kotomi in Clannad and Nodoka in the Negima! series. She played the role of Sawako perfectly. Fit her personality and everything. I can also say the same thing about the rest of the cast. Very well done.
Characters... characters, characters, characters... I liked a lot of them... but there was one character... that one character that killed my soul every time she showed her ugly face. So, let's start off with Sawako. She was perfect in a lot of ways. She was pretty, funny, and I'd honestly love to be her friend. Now, she's not exactly the brightest person in the world... she doesn't really know when she's being teased, which in my opinion could have been the only thing they could have changed, but, then again, it was one of the things I loved about her at the same time. Next is Kazehaya. He is, awesome. Super nice, friendly, and I love how red his face gets whenever he thinks about Sawako, it's super entertaining to watch. Then there's Ryuu. He was probably the funniest character in this show. I know that's saying a lot since he has the fewest lines in the show, despite being one of the main characters, but he is honestly hilarious. Might have actually been my favorite character in the series now that I think about it... Ayane and Chizuru were awesome friends, and I really loved how they were there for Sawako for most of the show. Lastly... Kurumi... ugh. Everyone hates her. No joke. She is the most annoying character in this entire series, and I really want to STRANGLE HER. I find myself yelling at my screen whenever she comes into the scene, and more than once someone has come in to see why I was yelling for no reason at 2:00 A.M. Overall, it was a really good selection of characters, despite the one who shows up in over half the episodes...
Loved it. I loved it a lot. I can't describe how much I loved this series. There were few flaws in this anime, and most of them were very small, except for the one flaw called Kurumi. That was a pretty big one, but either way, it was vital to the story to have her in it. But if you are waiting for me to tell you if I recommend this anime to you or not, you should have figured it out in the first paragraph of this review. Of course I recommend it. It's one of those animes that you need to watch, especially if you want to know the true meaning of love. Even if you don't want to know, watch it anyways. It was entertaining and overall beautiful. read more
Apr 2, 2010
The first few episodes were definitely enjoyable, the back story to why Sawako is an outcast is different and interesting and so is how she begins to make friends. Unfortunately after about episode 6 or 7 you are wasting your time. This anime should have been shorter as it moves at an incredible slow pace. Honestly it began to become a mission to sit through another episode. Not only were the episodes repetitive (never has a character cried so much before this) but you can pretty much guess what is going to happen in each episode after the first minute. Unfortunately there is no great ending to uplift the series, it just sort of flattens out part way through and never gets any momentum back.
I think was really annoyed me the most is the lack of development with the characters. There were so many beginnings of side stories and other love interests in this anime that never really developed. At least these could have livened up the second half of the series.
A few good things about this anime were the art, I thoroughly enjoyed the almost water colour style. The opening track is lovely to listen to as well and suits the anime perfectly. Kazehaya was actually quite a good character and was probably the most original out of all of them with his glass half full attitude that never wavered.
Overall I am giving this a 5/10 as although the first half was enjoyable the second half nearly put me into a coma. read more
May 14, 2010
Indeed, the story summary was what pulled me in. It sounded like and interesting spin on a old storyline, and it was a bit. It certainly was interesting to see the interactions of he characters of Sawako since so many were afraid of her. But when you really get down to it, this is a lot like other high school romances. Outcast girl likes most popular guy, they get close, and fall in love. And of course, there's high school drama along the way and plenty of morals and such. This definitely isn't something you haven't seen before if you've been a long time anime fan. Still, it's at least worth a look if you're interested.
The art in this anime get's the highest score from me. It was certainly amazing and breathtaking in quite a few places. The artist of the anime definitely took the time to add every detail, sparkle, and breath correctly. It was really great to look at. Of course though, there were a few parts that had not so great animations. It was few and not too bad, but still there and prominent.
The opening and ending song was fantastic. The opening especially caught my eye. It really captured the essence of a slice of life romance. It fit perfectly. The ending was also quite good, although I didn't like it as much as the opening. That's probably more of a personal taste, so you should definitely give it a listen. Other music throughout the anime was quite good and done well, too. The opening and ending definitely stand out, though.
Now here is where the anime started to go a bit downhill for me. At first I wast entranced by the characters and thought they were all great, and for some that is indeed true. Others... Not so much. This wouldn't be as bad of a problem if it wasn't the main characters who were the not so great ones. Sawako and Kazehaya didn't get very much development throughout the series; It was very, very little. Kazehaya remained pretty much the same through the whole thing, and after a while you just get kind of tired/used to it. Sawako is the biggest example though, since she is the main character you follow. She's decent I suppose, but not really main character material. She got very little if any character development. For example, even after she's had friends for a long time, she still cried her eyes out every time they did something nice for her. I believe this series would be a lot more heartwarming if you actually got to see her get used to these things; That way you could know she truly has made good friends. The side characters of Ryuu, Ayane, and Chizu on the other hand were fantastic. They did a great job with these characters, and went in a really good direction with them. I was happy with them for sure.
During the first half of the series, I did enjoy watching it. It was interesting, and seemed like a pretty good anime. Towards the middle though, the series slammed on the breaks. Kazehaya and Sawako went nowhere in their relationship all of a sudden, and the story just started to seem all the same. I would sometimes find myself watching the clock to see how long the rest of the episode was because I wanted it to end. That's not to say it was bad; Just decent. Taking a look back on it I realize it wasn't all that fantastic, but it is enjoyable when watching it the first time. It's gets a solid 7 from me.
This anime is worth the watch of a few episodes if you're interested, and you can see how you feel about it from there. I would recommend it mostly to anime fans who love the slice of life romance genre, because this is the anime for you. Personally though, I just can't give this anime a score higher then seven. Hope this review helped to people who were considering watching, and thanks for reading! read more
Oct 2, 2010
Well, it is that in all its essence.
The thing is that this show presents itself in a very unique perspective, one which amplifies and embellishes little elements that are usually overlooked in a typical anime of its genre. What's special about this show is the experience one gets from watching it.
The story is told mainly through the eyes of Kuronuma Sawako, the main character. She's a shy little girl having a ghostly guise, constantly feared or misunderstood by many people because she resembles Sadako (her nickname) from a movie called The Ring. Being told in her perspective, we get to see first-hand of all the happenings in her life in perfect detail, her social transformation as she opens herself out to the world.
The thing I found interesting about the story is that how the season changes correspondingly with its progress. Everything starts off in spring where Sawako first met Kazehaya, the male lead. As spring is the season for new things to happen, this fateful event marks the starting point where wonderful things such as friendship, start revealing themselves to Sawako one by one. It's rather like planting a seed in the lushness of spring. Then things begin to peak in summer. Autumn doesn't seem to last long here. The last season, winter, is where all things are brought to an end at the start of a new year. In my opinion, I think this is an orderly display of plot and we can sense that time goes on with a change in season.
The pacing is set at a slow speed. No, it doesn't mean you will find fillers and the likes, this is because the show really needs that much time for it to deliver this natural feeling. All episodes link to one another smoothly except for one recap episode where I find it highly unnecessary for it to be included.
The show also includes a short arc with Sawako's friend, Chizuru getting the limelight. And it packs quite the punch for its size.
It's sad to see the end of the series, what with the sudden bringing down to a close type of ending. Though it would be satisfying hear a second season coming along.
This simple storyline is complemented with crisp, clear and vivid art which go extremely well together. Starting from the background, done with bright and lively hues of watercolor, the skies in day or night, rain or shine, blending in so well with the scene and season. The lighting is also a job well done especially on the characters and for once you don't see them pasted with the background.
And I must comment on how they pay attention to the little details. Flowers aside, they animated ladybugs and birds in the backyard, something that we rarely see in shows these days.
The character drawing is not much to brag about, it is consistent, they are drawn in such a simple manner that it is pleasing to the eyes, with modest blushes, and their eyes and facial expressions portrayed accurately as well. The chibi forms of the characters are what that made my day, literally. They are an excellent source for making a few laughs and make things look plain cute, I'm talking about Sawako with a twinkling star beside her face, and Ayane with flabby lips. Sometimes, the characters tend to swap from normal to chibi mode too much, but for me it's all right, they still maintain a fair balance of the two.
As for the environment, this is, I believe, what made the art attractive. Throughout the spring and summer seasons, you can regularly see bubbles and pentagons appearing in emotional scenes dancing about that really adds humidity and that almost visible sense of freshness you find in morning gardens with glistening dewdrops. It really amplifies the overall feel of the picture.
Sound is yet another treat in Kimi ni Todoke. The seiyuus all did a very good job to bring out the characters, all befit their roles superbly, Sawako sounds kinda eerie at the beginning, but her normal soft and shy voice can at times make your ears melt out of sheer pleasure. Her short little gasps can very well put her in the moe category. Even Pin's annoying laughing and jeering is pleasing to hear sometimes too.
The soundtrack came out to be fine, and it really enhances the mood of the environment. These quiet tones bring out the sentiments of the characters, some support a romantic or sad scene, and there are one or two that fit in just fine with the comedy. Oh and there was this particular track that made me feel like a was watching while floating in midair.
The opening sequence, Kimi ni Todoke is the best. It's like a blast of emotion that made my feelings erupt the first time I saw it. This piece has a guitar and piano version which can be heard in the anime, and believe me, the piano solo is no less than perfect in my view. The ending theme, Kataomoi is fine to the extent of ending the episode. It slowly brings you to a smooth landing after being up in the air watching for so long.
Here is the part that shines in this show, the characters. Is is also the most important aspect of the show. In Kimi ni Todoke, we have Sawako who has all the qualities of a quiet and reserved individual who, through meeting Kazehaya, gains two close friends, a rival, a lover, and her Zashiki Warashi (a spirit which brings luck) status among her classmates.
This show focuses on the various interactions between the characters and the outcome and does it masterfully. As aforementioned, they wanted to show what other shows normally avoid, which is the feelings we all have deep down inside.
The show speaks of inner sincerity, not the hard outer shells one has, and Sawako, with little experience of socializing, is a prime example of someone who exhibits pure innocence and sincerity.
Just look at her speech, albeit a little over the top and effusively grateful, she has in herself courage to stand up and speak for herself, and for others. And she really tries to do her best at that, as she kept struggling all the time to keep up with the norms of her peers.
This sense of trust and mutual affection can even stretch to the supporting cast, and this goes to show that no matter what kind of person you are, down at the core we pretty much are the same.
Another thing is, we see ourselves in Sawako that's a fact. No matter who you are and how you came to know what life is, you can always relate and see Sawako living through a similar situation as you did, because what they focus here is a general field of life's good and bad stuffs.
But as we watch this show, we can't help but feel that familiar warmth we know or used to know so well before. It's like, hey, I remember doing that or having that experience. And some of you will get a sense of relief or assurance that you are not so alone in this world, and what happened to you happens to others. For one thing Sawako here has been through the trials, got her first times, her first crush, her first real friends, her first sleepover and late night parties.
If you give your compassion knowing Sawako's tears, if you share your delight with her cheers, if you are envious for all those treasures being heaped upon her, or just shed tears with no particular reason, by all means continue to do so and let your emotions to be in sync with her. I'll be frank, I did cry while watching the show.
This is a show that requires patience, you need to entrust your time into its care, and what you receive in return is a wonderful experience you will remember for some time to come. You will be transported to another world, as simple and little as it is, and there you can feel at ease, and forget your worries, soaking in the subtle bits of details the show has to offer. Well maybe that's a bit exaggerated, but it's what I feel at least.
Overall, this is a show that is not quite the ordinary shoujo romance anime as some might expect. I think it's safe to say that the enjoyability of this anime varies according to each person. It has none of the mushy romance stuff, so no lip contact. You can even learn something from this show and recall some sweet memories from before. To put it simply, Kimi ni Todoke is an animated storybook narrated by Kuronuma Sawako, where we see and hear the story of her social transformation, a little girl stepping into society with a will to change for the better, and that has made all the difference.
It really is a special show, a show that reaches out to you. read more
Jan 3, 2011
I found myself liking and relating to each and every character in this series, Sawako and Kazehaya especially. In a romance series like this one, the story is 100% reliant upon the characterization. It works because each character's personality comes out so earnestly throughout the series. We get to watch their interactions with each other and the emotions and actions that arise as a result.
The character of Sawako (the titular Sadako) really is a diamond in the rough. At the beginning there is not a single person who understands and sympathizes with her internal struggles. She is alone and devoid of friends thanks in part to her creepy facade. It is Kazehaya and his non-judgmental character who initiates the first tidbits of change into Sawako's life, and he does this with nothing more than his trademark sparkling smile. From that point on, Sawako makes her first (and best) friends in Chizuru and Ayane, finds a love rival in Kurumi, and witnesses many of Kazahaya's 'firsts'.
With the progression of the series, Sawako comes to realize that life's struggles should never be confronted alone and that with just a few good friends by your side, the world becomes a much brighter and happier place. This realization obliterates the mystique and obscurity surrounding her and she emerges as the beautiful gem that she is, much to Kazehaya's chagrin.
I never once got bored with Kimi ni Todoke's relatively slow pacing and overall lack of angst and drama. Many romance series are similarly paced after all, so for those who are romance veterans, boredom should not be an issue in the least. Sawako's meek nature and nervousness in most situations culminates in quite a few comedic moments. Chizuru too, with her tomboy antics, is another source or laughter. Though the supporting cast fall into generic archetypes, it is their interactions with Sawako, who does not fall into any known archetypes, that make this series so enjoyable.
The art of Kimi ni Todoke suits the show perfectly. Its sparse style and colors lend beauty to the scenery and characters during those moments when it reaches an emotional climax, such as when Kazehaya smiles. The background music serves the same purpose and serves it well, though the aren't exactly memorable. The OP and ED themes are, however. Personally, OP and ED themes take a bit of acclimation on my part for them to grow on me (I don't skip OPs and EDs EVAR). Kimi ni Todoke's OP hooked me almost instantly, a feat that is not achieved often. Once I adjusted to the vocals of the ED's performer, it also became a well-loved contribution to the series.
The only thing I can really find fault with Kimi ni Todoke is its ending. If the second season wasn't in the works, it would be totally inexcusable, but since the first episode is airing TOMORROW (so stoked), I was able to overlook it.
On to the second season! read more
Apr 12, 2010
Kuronuma Sawako, a student with a sweet and adorable look... not for her classmates. She gained the nickname Sadako (from the cursed girl of the "The Ring" movies) thanks to the way everyone sees her, besides her antisocial style and the difficulty of making friends. Only until she mets Kazehaya (her big romance partner of the show), Ryuu (Kazehaya's friend) and her new friends, Ayane and Chizuru. They then try to show everyone the real Sawako: sweet and shy.
The art is great, the color choice is good and that makes it nice to watch. Perfect for a shojo/school comedy (the OP and ED are extremely beautiful). What to say about the sound... the voices are great and all of them fits perfectly in their respectives characters, as expected of the nice dub make it by the japanese.
Some characters are side-shows, like Sawako, Ayane and Chizuru, the powerful trio that steals the scene. The various situations they go through are real funny, like trying to "fix" Sawako or even interacting with all the supporting characters, the three girls are the strong point of the show.
If you want a romance anime, I recommend looking for another one, but if you want a SAPPY romance anime + school comedy, you can try Kimi ni Todoke. Don't expect a single kiss here and even less an end, since Kimi ni Todoke don't have it, just like a lot of animes that continues on the manga version.
Kimi ni Todoke is a good show to start if you want to follow with the manga after, but if you don't, it is not. If you don't have the patience, just start with the manga and simply skip the anime like if it doesn't even exist. read more
Feb 13, 2010
At first glance, it may seem like a typical shoujo, boy-meets-girl kind of series. That's what I thought when I first read the synopsis, so I was kind of reluctant to watch it. But now...am I glad I did!
While not the most exciting or original plot line, it's simplicity charms me. It has a rather slow flow, but it doesn't bore, rather it helps emphasize the special moments that Sawako experiences in her school life. The process of growing up, feeling love for the first time, making friends, and even enemies are all so amazingly portrayed through this show.
Seriously, I've never liked a female lead this much before. Sawako is just too cute. She's innocent to the point of being humorous, but she's not stupid or weak. Quite the contrary actually (I was pleasantly surprised by how she interacted with Kurumi). She's always being positive, always trying to help others, and always being true to herself. You can't help but be moved by her. For the male lead, you've got the 100% refreshing Kazehaya who is actually not your typical male lead. At first glance, he's Mr.Perfect who everyone admires, but after a while you learn that he's just like any other guy. He gets flustered, nervous, angry and embarrassed like all of us do. And in my opinion, that just makes him more endearingly cute and charming.
Also, this show's supporting characters are some of the best I've seen in shoujo anime! They really define the true meaning of friendship :) Heck, even the antagonist is pretty awesome.
The artwork might not be considered the best out there, but it does the story justice (and then some). It's bright, simple and cute. There were certain times when I would think "wow, the colours look amazing here" (you gotta pay attention to sunset scenes!). They also did a good job with the characters, I think they purposely made them look plain so that it helps contrast times when they stand out (like when Sawako smiles!). So overall, they did a lovely job.
I love the opening song and I think it fits the series perfectly. Can't say much about the background music though because I haven't paid much attention to it...too busy enjoying the dialogue =)
I wish I can give this a higher rating than 10. I was pretty much smiling like an idiot throughout the first few episodes. The interaction between Sawako and Kazehaya are too cute for words, I felt much warm and fuzzy feelings when watching them. It makes me wish I could go back in time to experience high school romance like they did. But then again...who can find someone like Kazehaya.
Anyways, this show has really grown on me. I will definitely keep watching and rooting for Sawako. If this review or the ratings hasn't helped convince you to watch it, please seriously reconsider. Don't pass this up!