Jan 11, 2019
Stargirl24 (All reviews)
I started watching this anime because it is on so many recommendations and lists I had to see it for myself. And honestly, when I started, I didn't like it that much. The art and music are absolutely gorgeous, but the characters were a little annoying, particularly the violence played as comedy. They alway say quotable, philosophical lines that sound like they're spouting poetry, which just doesn't sound like an actual kid. It bothered me to the point that after episode seven I stopped. But I started watching it again and boy am I glad I did! It definitely got better as the series went on, with character development galore. We get to see multiple points of view and how the characters' relationships affect each other. The problems I had with it initially were still present (plus way too many flashbacks to previous episodes), but the building emotion and character development makes it worth it as we get backstories for everyone, and particularly for me, see why Kaori is the way she is.
In the beginning, she seemed like a Manic Pixie Dream Girl to me, but that's not who she is at all. Yes, she does show the male protagonist that life has meaning and brings him joy. But she is her own person, a girl who lives life to the fullest and has vulnerabilities and fears just like everyone else. The show hints at the ending until it becomes (I think) fairly obvious. That doesn't take away from it at all; it is beautiful and painful and the very last episode succeeded in making me cry. The story builds to the emotional climax in the last two episodes with dazzling art and beautiful music that sums up Kaori and Kosei's relationship and punched me right in the heart.