Another phenomenal story penned by Jin Kobayashi, the mangaka for the famed School Rumble. To be honest, I didn't know about Natsu no Arashi due to it's low popularity until I ran out of recent anime to watch! LOL. Of course, seeing how much I've enjoyed from watching School Rumble, I thought Kobayashi's new series would not disappoint, despite the rather low ratings given. Turns out, I was right! As some people would say, "don't judge a book by it's cover", the same thing sorta applies here. Don't just look at its 7.something rating score, but actually try watching/reading the series, each series will have different tastes for different people. Anyways, I'm sure you're here for the review, not me blabbing about it.
Soz, when I first started watching this series, I was able to be absorbed in on the main plot, but I felt that the stories where more or less one shots per episode or 2. It's easy to tell that this style of story-planning belongs to Jin Kobayashi, but this one was easily more well-planned out than School Rumble was. I was amazed how absorbed by the plot and I stayed up till about 4 AM to finish the series. I also noticed how this type of genre/story only attracts a very specific group of viewers, but ignoring the obvious genre, I thought Natsu No Arashi was a pretty refreshing series to watch and the story was definitely superb.
Art, is something that varies between people. Luckily for me and School Rumble buffs, the art has remained more or less the same. A major difference I noticed between School Rumble's art and Natsu no Arashi's art was that Jin Kobayashi drew the eyes of the characters a bit differently. Not that it affects the viewer's opinion a lot, just a little not. Outstanding art and graphics, nothing to complain about here :D
I actually found the OP and the EDs pretty good. I don't know if anyone noticed but they change the lyrics of the OP every episode. They say like "on my 8th Summer" to reference the 8th episode and that changes per episode Also, they say something different about the joys of summer every time in the OP. As for the ED, I found the dancing Arashi to be a great candidate for the next Ipod CM! ROFL. The ending's music wasn't too shabby and was in fact, quite catchy. The thing that bothered me the most about sound was the lack of OST present during the series. Either i was too absorbed by Arashi's looks or there just really wasn't much music?
As with School Rumble, the characters were pretty versatile and i found the Master/ Arashi / and Kaja have very good personalities between the 3 of them, and it provides variety in the show. Also, Hajime and Jun had also very supplementary characteristics leading to hilarious clashes between the two. Overall, I thought the characters were much more appealing than most of the other shows i've watched recently. Definitely a plus for this show.
Personally, as long as the art, character, and story is good, my enjoyment is almost always high. It's impossible to not enjoy such a great series as Natsu no Arashi. With many funny moments in the series, lots of crush-like romance, and several parodies of School Rumble such as Tenma Tsukamoto/ Eri Sawachika on a milk carton or Harima and Tenma spotted on a date or a character drawn very similar to Yakumo Tsukamoto. Personally, I thought because Jin Kobayashi realized Yakumo's success in School Rumble, he made Arashi's attributes very a like to Yakumo such as the hair and eyes.
Well, if you could see my expression at the moment, you could tell it's an obvious ten. Natsu no Arashi is definitely one of the top anime that was released during it's time. I don't think I've ever seen an anime with such genres been as appealing as Natsu no Arashi was. I certainly hope there will be a sequel to the Natsu no Arashi Akinaichuu, but I doubt it. Although so underrated, Natsu no Arashi will always be one of the very best show's I've ever watched. Definitely will be rewatching some time soon! I hope you'll will enjoy it as much as I did!