Ariana here, and I’m still alive!  Just very, very busy with a big project at work, so I might end up having to work weekends now also.  To get a bit of news out of the way first…

I’m still going to be reviewing Mahou Shojo Taisen as it continues on into the summer anime season, as that’s a fairly easy series for me to review and doesn’t take much time.  I would LIKE at least make one final review for Kanojo ga Flag after watching the last three episodes, but I honestly don’t know if I have the time to do that atm.  First impressions are definitely doable for me, though whether I can actually pick up another anime to review for this season is something I’m unsure of right now.  I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

Anyway, here is the first of my First Impressions for the summer season.

This anime should seriously just be called “PRETENTIOUSNESS, THE ANIME.”

Summary:

We are introduced to Touko, the daughter of a family of glass-makers, who lives in a city by the sea.  She has four good friends whom she hangs out with often.  It’s summer, and Touko goes to a festival with said friends.  Her friends all worry that they might not see each other again, since they’re all seniors in high school now; but Touko says that everything will turn out okay.

The animation for this series is generally lovely, but I’m admittedly not too big a fan of how they draw the characters’ faces in 3/4 angle…

The next day at school, while Touko is trying to draw the chickens that they keep there, she meets with a mysterious new transfer student named Kakeru.  He acts in a way that makes Touko fear for the chickens’ safety, so she coerces her friends to each take care of a chicken with her.

And here we see two characters slowly being strangled by the red string of fate.

The day after, Touko hangs out with her friends and starts to talk about Kakeru.  And, surprise surprise, he suddenly appears right behind her.  Touko’s friends quickly go on the defensive over this new kid, and the episode ends.

“EVERYONE, GIVE HIM THE ANGRY EYE!”

My Opinion:

Okay, if the ending credits are to be believed, the title of this series is actually “Glass Lip” not just “Glasslip.”  But anyway…

I’ll be honest.  I didn’t like this series.  I wanted so much to like it—the premise made it sound like a lovely slice-of-life series; the background and animation are beautiful; and it’s got sort of the same tone/atmosphere as Nagi no Asukara.  But I just didn’t like it because it takes itself SO DAMN SERIOUSLY.  Let me repeat: the series takes itself so seriously that *I* couldn’t take it seriously.

These kids are living the most calming, relaxing, and mundane lives ever.  But because they are “teenagers” every little thing is treated with the gravity of a country going to war or someone dying.  It’s melodramatic and heck and very narmy!  It doesn’t help that this series tries to insert some “intellectual” mumbo jumbo by having them wax poetic about the dumbest crap.  The point where I lost my patience with this series is when Kakeru was formally introduced and man is he pretentious and angsty as shit.  So like a solid chunk of this episode is dedicated to chickens, right?  Well, that’s mainly his fault.

Touko talks about how one of the chickens has been brought to the school from a different location or something, and Kakeru’s response to that is “So that’s why he doesn’t fit in.”  WTF?!?  And then he talks about how the chickens should be kept in a coop, because they don’t know any better and the world is a cold and dark place apparently.  Like… holy shit.  The fastest way for an anime to make me hate a character is to make them THIS pretentious.  And it’s made worse by Touko worrying over the chickens, wondering if they’re really happy to be kept as pets… like, I’d be the first to tell you that I’m a hardcore vegan and animal rights activist, but… I don’t want to see that in an anime!!!  I was literally yelling at the screen “THEY’RE JUST CHICKENS!!!” at that point because all the drama over CHICKENS had surpassed the level where it was acceptable and just reached absurdity.

Other than that bit of ridiculousness, there are a lot of things this episode does that I don’t really like.  The episode introduces the characters by still frame, with their name next to them.  That is an awfully lazy way of doing things, and also makes it very hard for people to actually remember who is who.  Secondly, at least five of the six characters are also chummy buddies, and we’re just supposed to accept that.  Admittedly, I don’t mind that particular trope so much, but it’s also very lazy story-telling.  Thirdly, while the animation for this series is absolutely gorgeous; when the anime takes shortcuts, it’s very damn noticeable.  There are… quite a bit of still frames where the characters continue to talk but nothing’s animated.  I can see that being used for like, artistic effect, but when it’s used here it just feels terribly out of place.  Also, the anime sometimes makes use of chibis when characters are talking, which clashes horribly with the rest of the art-style.  I understand that shortcuts need to be taken for a series that has such high end animation for backgrounds and the like, but that does not bode very well for the rest of the episodes in this series…

Lastly, this first episode introduces my least favorite anime trope: love triangles.  The first love triangle is revealed just a mere SIX MINUTES into the episode and I just groaned.  And then one of the girls involved asks the dude she likes, “If Touko asked you to die, would you do it?”  Like… jfc lady, calm yourself.  I know it’s supposed to be really dramatic because ~teenagers~ and you’re also supposed to care because they’re the main characters but… I just couldn’t bring myself to care about any of them.  Call me a jaded adult, but such trifling romantic troubles just make me roll my eyes nowadays.

Overall, this series is a serious mixed bag, though sadly I’m leaning more towards disinterest.  It’s a lovely series, and the animation (when there is animation) is absolutely breathtaking.  But the characters so far are painfully bland and clichéd, and the whole series reeks of melodrama.  Sorry, but count me out.

Out of five:

precure heart2 precure heart2

holy shit kakeru you are the most pretentious shit. don’t go spouting stuff like you’re so damn wordly at your age

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