Orihara Kouhei returns to his town after a long disappearance to fullfil the promises he made to several girls in his childhood. He suffered from memory loss, and carries a tragic past. An strange ambience surrounds the OVA...It's almost like a dream, like memories from the past trying to come together in one piece but without being able to...
When Winston Smith was brought into Room 101 in 1984, he was forced to face his greatest fear, rats, and in doing so, he betrayed his love and solidified Big Brother's grip on him. He loved Big Brother because that was all his crushed spirit could possibly see.
One is my Room 101 anime. O'Brien would strap me into that chair, fit the wire cage on my head and I'd have blind girls, pretentious ghosts and a fountain of tears struggling to form. But unlike Winston, I would not give in. My spirit would not be crushed. Onii-sama would not have me in his mad clutches.
One would teach me that I could still feel pain and that it is good to feel and to stay alive.
If I could emerge from One still wanting to draw breath into my lungs, it would mean that, yes, life still means enough to me to go on living. If I can escape from the fresh hells One introduces with each episode -- if I can crawl out from under the misery heaped upon the poor viewer who surely does not deserve such a cruel fate as watching One, unless he, of course, broke a promise to a childhood friend -- then I can survive anything life throws at me. One gives me the courage to face my job, face my love and face society itself by virtue of being so soul-crushingly boring and mind-destroying.
Five Frames of Animation is Peace
Lack of Tears is Slavery
Ghost Sex is Strength
These are the virtues set forth by Onii-sama. He destroys the eyes with stunningly awful visuals, turns the brain into mush with hackneyed, incomprehensible drama and suffuses into the spirit with vague promises of seduction. His words whisper insidiously into the viewer's ear: cry. Cry. Cry. It is sad because we say so. Please cry, won't you?
But no. It is not sad. Only the effort inspires pity. So desperate is Onii-sama to grab the hearts of the common man that he sets forth tired tropes and vague character types in the hopes that the viewer will fill in the rest with their youthful spirit. We supply the toys; now, you play dolls and cry.
No, Onii-sama. We will not give in. We will not stand for this. We demand better! We demand to know what is happening! We demand to know why it is so sad! We demand to know why parts of this anime take place in hell and why the city turns into Atlantis at the end!
We demand life. One offers ghosts. Onii-sama has nothing.
I will put this plain and simple. This is an OVA intended for those who have played the game(One Kagayagku Kisetsu e). For those who don't know the game was a pivitol piece which started the whole so-called Nakige genre and lead to the creation of Key.
Putting aside introduction, overall the OVA is average, nothing stands out about it, but it does what an OVA is suppose to do, animate a bits of the game for the fans of the game. In this case, the OVA covers essentially the ends of the different scenarios, which is probably why everyone finds
it soooo confusing.
Overall, if you played the game, it's not a bad way to kill 90 or so minutes, it is kinda nice to see the game you've played come to life with an upgrade in art(the game came out in 1998. Otherwise, I highly doubt that you'll find it all that enjoyable unless you wanna experience a small part of the piece that made Key Key without going through the hassle of playing the game.
It was pretty confusing all the way through though. There wasn't much of a plot that was easy to discern, it was like watching a muddled dream. It kind of told separate stories for the characters (much like in other Key animes), but it skipped around a lot, and the tales for each character were very rushed and confusing. It did pretty much show how the main character Kouhei was trying to make up his promises to each other girls though. (Even if it was kind of vague, like the rest of the story.)
Anyone can see from watching just the opening that it doesn't have
the greatest character designs, but personally I thought that some of the background art was pretty nice for an older anime. Hence why I gave it a 7.
The sounds were pretty clear, and the music really added to the "mood" of the story. The music is pretty nice and relaxing, but it does get a little bit overwhelming from time-to-time because the music is pretty much always playing. And in the parts whenever Kouhei was playing an instrument, it was hard to tell whether or not it was the music or him playing. I don't know, that was a bit confusing to me. o_o So, basically the music is nice, it adds to the mood, but can be overwhelming.
I thought the characters were pretty interesting, and kind of unique. Some of their personalities were slightly similar, but there were a couple of unique characters. I thought that the blind girl, and the mute girl were pretty unique, you don't often see characters with those kinds of disabilities in animes (well... at least I haven't seen many ^^;), and I just thought that was kind of interesting.
There are some enjoyable parts, (I really thought the ending was cute), but with the confusion and the vagueness of the story it can get a little tedious. But I though it was worth watching out to the end.
Overall, I thought it was an OK show, definitely not one of Key's best but pretty unique anyways. If Key decided to remake it to longer and more detailed, I would definitely watch it.