Disclaimer: I have no idea if this show is supposed to be called Sakurada Reset or Sagrada Reset, because it seems to get called both and each of those are listed as alternate titles. Also to be honest I kinda don’t care.
Sakurada is a town that has the unusual distinction of nearly everybody in it having some kind of supernatural ability, and the other unusual distinction of those abilities ceasing to work outside of the town. (The holders of the ability will also apparently forget they even had that ability outside the town as well).
The main character, Asai Kei – has the ability of perfect recollection that extends to the five main senses. The mysterious Haruki Misora has the ability to ‘reset’ time to a maximum of 3 days prior, with the only catch being that her own memories are also reset and thus she won’t ever remember if she’s reset or not.
Another girl, Souma Sumire, desperately wants Kei and Misora to become friends – partly because their two abilities complement each other well (since only Kei can remember going through a Reset) and partly because she wants the loner Misora to have a friend and she finds the two similar.
Misora also helps a young girl find her mother, but the girl says some cryptic things about being a fake and her mother not really loving her. At the end of the episode we find out that this girl was supposed to have died many years prior.
It’s often not so much the story, it’s how you tell it. And boy oh boy is the story in Sakurada Reset badly told. There is some utterly dismal directing going on here because I nearly fell asleep watching this – which is surprising, because even though the plot isn’t exactly unique, it’s hardly the most boring thing out there. But this show just could not tell a compelling story at all.
First of all, the characters feel empty, and they’re presented in a way that makes them incredibly difficult to read or understand. The worst offender is Kei, who is unbelievably bland, and so we have to have every other character tell us, the viewers, what kind of person he is. Towards the start of the episode, he even tells one of the other characters what kind of person he is. He does not once demonstrate any of these qualities himself, we’re supposed to just take the word for it. But somehow or other, he’s ‘simiar to Misora’, even though they don’t seem to be anything alike other than the fact that they both barely emote at all and are always speaking in hushed whispers. Alright, maybe they’re more alike than I originally thought. But seriously, the hushed whispers thing. It gets really annoying after a while, because Kei talks the most in this, and he always does it in the weird tone of voice, like we’re in the library and he just found out something really important and has to tell us very quickly, but also kind of quietly so no one else hears It’s bloody weird, and I don’t know if it’s intentional or just plain shonky acting.
I understand that this show might have been going for a superpowers premise with a more ‘realistic’ grounding instead of having everyone act overly ‘anime’ or whatever, hence the subdued (and honestly dull and unremarkable) character designs (coupled with the bare minimum of animation), but the consequence is that it’s almost mind-numbingly dull. Maybe things get more interesting because this first episode was mostly just a bunch of rule-explaining, but having your characters all act deadpan and serious actually…doesn’t really make them more realistic.
The only part where things actually start getting interesting is literally right before the credits roll – we find out there’s something really weird about that kid, and Sumire apparently jumps off a bridge. It’s a vaguely enticing cliffhanger, but I honestly just don’t think I can be bothered. Maybe I’ll wait and see what people are saying about this one later cos I’m pretty unimpressed at the moment.