Build ups…if you take what we’ve had this year with series that took students into the realm of japanese anime there are not very many– Selector Infected WIXOSS even with its second half is trying way too hard at being a dark mahou shojo card-game anime [which is one of the big reasons why I dropped beginning half in the first place]. Moving back to Spring 2014, we had an obscurely animated yet authentic view of students trying to each pursue their own goals with pong pushing the story forward. Without question one of the best Noitamina series– Ping Pong The Animation. Noitamina should really develop more slice of life and even josei anime in their timeslot, we’ve had some incredible series in these genres over the last couple of years– Gin no Saji, Natsuyuki Rendezvous and can’t forget about the jazz series Sakamichi no Apollon.
With Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso, it is fairly solid anime on all fronts– the animation is strikingly beautiful courtesy of A-1 Pictures, a magnificient soundtrack by Arakawa Under The Bridge’s Masaru Yokoyama and an intriguing love story centered around musicians. Sure takes me back to the days of Nodame Cantabile! Couldn’t have asked for a better series to air alongside science-fiction cyberpunk series Psycho-Pass 2!
We’ve been shown Kaori and Kousei’s musical abilities, both of their own weaknesses– her illness and his fear of moving forward in his passion for the piano without a mother around. Powerful writing and I really like how Kaori gently drives Kousei to perform and rediscover his music style in an entirely different way without notes on the page. Her delicate nurturing behavior towards the piano screamed how passionate she is in helping Kousei perform– loved when Tsubaki noticed her next door and in Kousei’s clothes– the build-up that we needed for this episode’s focus on her.
The counterbalance here is Tsubaki in that she doesn’t want to accept that she has loved him all this time and it takes another girl and their connection to music to understand this and that they are miles apart from any sort of childhood relationship they had. At least this is what I took from her fired up during baseball practice and listening to his piano playing next door. Asking out Saito just proves how strongly she cares for Kousei in tons of ways she never thought imaginable– the diner scene between her and Saito emphasized this greatly! It’s scenes like this and Kousei listening to music with Kaori in the second half of this episode that makes this show really deliver!
I also enjoyed how we’re shown the childhood segments between Tsubaki and Kousei– it’s a formula that the story has developed from the very start and the very end of an episode illustrating how some emotions can remain the same after so many years have gone by. Tsubaki after having lost the game and carried home by Kousei as she slowly begins to cry her heart out led to some amazing results in their friendship accompanied by the best piece of music I’ve heard so far in this series!
OVERALL IMPRESSION: 10/10