Anime of Tomorrow
Tag Archives: yuru yuri
|July 22||SAO Ep. 3 It’s said you should let go of the past so it won’t drag you down, but holding on to a cherished memory can make you stronger.|
|Hagure Yuusha Ep. 3 This anime really lives up to its title of “Rogue Hero.” Akatsuki is a jerk, but he comes through when it matters most.|
|Eureka AO Ep. 14 Sometimes the reality you accepted gets turned on its head when what you wanted and what actually is no longer match.|
|Koichoco Ep. 3 I just KNEW the food club was going to get embroiled in this shady, underhanded political conspiracy sooner or later!|
|Dog Days 2 Ep. 3 While it’s nice to see the underdog finding success, all things considered perhaps Rebecca is doing a little too well.|
|Kokoro Connect Ep. 3 Although it was Taichi’s intention to give Yui more confidence around men, I think he took things a little too far.|
|Arcana Famiglia Ep. 3 It would appear that sometimes stories you didn’t think could be true turn out to be stranger than you imagined.|
|Natsuyuki Rendezvous Ep. 2 I’m beginning to think that Atsushi’s only reason to exist is to be an incorrigibly annoying pain in the butt.|
|July 23||Natsuyuki Rendezvous Ep. 3 Hazuki has made some interesting, metaphorical insights about the similarities between cut flowers and ghosts.|
|Rinne 2 Ep. 3 As kind and spirited as Madoka can be, too often she shows a side that is much too willing to sacrifice herself for others.|
|Total Eclipse Ep. 4 I like how Yuuya is forced to confront his multicultural heritage and the different mindset of American and Japanese.|
|Yuru Yuri 2 Ep. 2 Far too little happens in this series. The lack of story and the weak comedic links that remain aren’t holding together.|
|Hyouka Ep. 14 The mystery flair of this series has really declined, but it’s been replaced by a very fun and compelling school life drama.|
|July 24||H ga Dekinai Ep. 2 There are many similarities between this series and Shakugan no Shana. Red hair, fire, knee socks, energy drain, fuzetsu.|
|July 25||Tari Tari Ep. 4 I didn’t think it would be possible, but Konatsu’s determination is slipping, replaced by a modest attitude of compromise.|
|July 26||H ga Dekinai Ep. 3 The cast expands with more devilish girls, but I like how each of their contractor’s energy comes from different sources.|
|July 27||Natsuyuki Rendezvous Ep. 4 Now that Hazuki has hit a brick wall, I guess it’s Atsushi’s turn to try and win back the wife he left behind.|
|July 28||Accel World Ep. 16 This anime is so good at putting a simple concept like willpower into words and images unbelievably sharp and clean.|
|Eureka AO Ep. 15 While it’s not revolutionary writing, it’s still a cool twist to be left wondering just who the bad guys really are.|
|Koichoco Ep. 4 This series continues its pace of smart character development built around a framework of humor and serious social conflict.|
*You could have read these mini-reviews in real time as I updated my status by following me on Twitter.
|July 9||Muv-Luv Total Eclipse Ep. 2 This mecha anime continues to be very lackluster. It’s not bad, but if things don’t pick up I might drop it.|
|Hyouka Ep. 11.5 Oreki’s laziness vs Chitanda’s energy is always a complimentary clash of world views. It’s good he’s not very stubborn.|
|July 10||Hyouka Ep. 12 I’m confused as to why Oreki’s oversight on the conclusion to the movie has just been dropped and the story is moving on.|
|Yuru Yuri 2 Ep. 1 Initial impression – moe of the same http://wp.me/p1Gaby-rr|
|Tari Tari Ep. 2 This was quite a hectic series of events, but I liked Konatsu’s determination. Other than that, what are the guys up to?|
|July 11||Sword Art Online Ep. 1 Initial impression – beautiful and straightforward http://wp.me/p1Gaby-rx|
|Kokoro Connect Ep. 1 Initial impression – naturally smart and funny http://wp.me/p1Gaby-rD|
|Dakara Boku wa, H ga Dekinai Ep. 1 Initial impression – surprisingly not so bad http://wp.me/p1Gaby-rI|
|Dog Days 2 Ep. 1 Initial impression – more of the same with more characters http://wp.me/p1Gaby-rP|
|July 12||Kono Naka ni Hitori, Imouto ga Iru! Ep. 1 Initial impression – less than ordinary (4/10) http://wp.me/p1Gaby-rX|
|July 14||Accel World Ep. 14 This series has finally introduced a really ominous villain who is already giving a much needed injection of conflict.|
|Koi to Senkyo to Chocolate Ep. 1 Initial impression – somewhat scattered, but interesting http://wp.me/p1Gaby-s6|
|Arcana Famiglia Ep. 2 As little as this episode contributed to moving the story along, it did a good job with its character building.|
|Eureka AO Ep. 13 I like where this is starting to go. The complete picture is taking shape as the links between the series are revealed.|
*You could have read these mini-reviews in real time as I updated my status by following me on Twitter.
Summer 2012 (12 episodes) (more info)
What makes a moe anime good for me is when it parodies the mundaneness of life in familiar ways that are funny, cute and/or insightful. Yuru Yuri doesn’t do that. It’s just a bit too imaginative with its themes and doesn’t mesh with reality very much. While that’s not really a true complaint per se, it detracts from the viewers’ ability to relate to it. I don’t know that a second season of Yuru Yuri was really necessary in the grand scheme of things. None of the characters really grow up in any way and tend to stick to what they know best and unfortunately what they know best is being just above average.
The biggest difference I can see between season one and two of Yuru Yuri is a massive growth in arrogance regarding its own worth. I suppose you could write that off as an attempt to be satirical, but I just don’t get how it’s any funnier than if it had just gone and explored things the way it always had done without this unnecessary shift in tone. Other moe anime like Squid Girl have a steady confidence that doesn’t mess around with anything that already works. The series’ episodic nature ought to keep things accessible to newcomers, but established fans of the first season probably won’t be wowed by the sameness of Yuru Yuri 2.
So despite the fact that it’s really neither good nor bad, what it all comes down to is that Yuru Yuri is a comedy series that really isn’t all that funny. Its moments of brilliance are less frequent than those of Acchi Kocchi and shine less brightly than A-Channel. If you’re hungry for moe, you can do much worse, but I’m currently withholding my seal of approval.
Final impression – Refreshing, but not as funny as I’d hoped 7/10
The unstoppable, capricious leader, Kyouko. The level-headed sidekick who vainly attempts to keep her in line, Yui. Their childhood friend and the girl everyone forgets about, Akari. And a new addition to the group, the hot and cold, pink twin-tailed Chinatsu. Together these four members of the Amusement Club have taken over the former Tea Club’s room and turned it into a gathering place where they can goof around and just have fun. Opposing their happy days are two members of the student council. The strict tsundere Ayano and her calm, yuri sidekick, Chitose. But despite their attempts to crash the Amusement Club’s party, more often than not they just end up getting sucked into the high-tempo pull of Kyouko’s personality to be whisked off on another wild ride.
To be honest, I wasn’t expecting Yuru Yuri to be as clever as it turned out to be when I first started watching it. With an all-female cast as is typical of moe anime, you’re not going to be seeing any romance from this series. However, as type-cast as some of the characters are, they do occasionally get to show a few more facets of their personalities in delightfully comedic ways. That being said, their depth is quite shallow when compared to the growth and development of the characters of A-Channel, another recent moe anime. The music is delightfully cheerful, the tropes pleasingly nontypical and it adds up to an anime that entertains.
Having watched all the releases and ongoing shows for summer 2011, here’s my recommendations in order from most recommended to least recommended (or “best to worst” if you prefer I be direct). Summer 2011 is a pretty average season in my opinion. There’s nothing much that stands out but nothing terribly offensive, either. But it is summer, so I think it’s understandable we’re not seeing any blockbusters. For now, this will be my last word on many of these anime until they conclude in 10 more weeks. Until then, please keep checking back as I begin to write my reviews of last season’s anime. You can stay up to date with my new posts as they get released by following me on my Twitter account. I’ll continue to move into the past reviewing anime with the eventual goal of having at least one post about every anime I’ve watched over the past eight years.
1. Kamisama no Memochou – colorful (J.C. Staff)
2. No. 6 – atmospheric (Bones)
3. Dantalian no Shoka – dramatic (Gainax)
4. Mayo Chiki! – best comedy of summer 2011
5. Blue Exorcist – awesome action
6. Hanasaku Iroha – mellow drama…melodrama?
7. Ikoku Meiro no Croisée – interesting development
8. Blood-C – fine action (CLAMP)
9. Kamisama Dolls – interesting concept
10. Yuru Yuri – moe comedy
11. Itsuka Tenma no Kuro Usagi – romance
12. Ro-Kyu-Bu! – sports loli
13. The iDOLM@STER – variety
14. Usagi Drop – unsure (not bad)
15. Uta no Prince-sama – underdeveloped
16. Mawaru Penguindrum – confusing
17. R-15 – misplaced ecchi
18. Nekogami Yaoyorozu – simple
19. Sacred Seven – bland (Sunrise)
20. Manyuu Hikenchou – borderline hentai
21. Twin Angel: Twinkle Paradise – boring
Impression – moe
Ayano, the hard-working student council vice-president, is upset with the fact that the lazy Kyoko has the best grades in the class. When she goes to confront Kyoko, Kyoko reveals that she gets good grades because she can cram study the night before a big test. Shaken, Ayano threatens to take away the clubroom from Kyoko if she can outscore Kyoko on the next test. Kyoko accepts the challenge on the condition that if Ayano fails to outscore her, Ayano will have to join the club. The next day, two student council clerks, Himawari and Sakurako, are assigned to sort papers in the student council room while Ayano goes off to look for Kyoko. While sorting, Kyoko happens to stop by with the rest of the club and offers to help sort papers. They finish and end up leaving before a frustrated Ayano returns to find she had received help from her enemy.
Yuru Yuri is cute, but somewhat spacey in its direction. It can’t seem to focus on just one theme or goal and roll with it. While this sort of arrangement is certainly a staple of success for many moe anime, for some reason Yuru Yuri feels like a long string of cliff hangers. There are so many loose threads flying around unresolved that I wonder if they will ever get revisited. Or maybe I’ll just completely forget about the unresolved plot elements and things will tumble along on their merry way. I’m hesitant to say Yuru Yuri is bad, because it has some very lovely moments where it shines brightly. That being said, I’m pretty sure this is something I’m going to be completing just for the sake of catching those few scenes of brilliance.
Initial impression – good
Akari, Yui, Kyoko and Chinatsu have decided they’ll start their own club by taking over the disbanded tea club’s room. They call it the amusement club and it will become whatever they decide as their whims ebb and flow. Activities range from indulging in the former tea club’s equipment, brainstorming ways to make themselves more popular, to just lazing around doing nothing. Everything is great until the student council president bursts through the door and breaks up the good times.
Yuru Yuri is a feel-good anime about junior high girls talking about random thoughts and doing random activities. For those who want a shorter description, it’s moe. But the moe factor is dialed down when compared to other recent titles like A-Channel. This can be a plus or a minus depending on how you handle moe; for me it’s a minus. That being said, there’s really not much to complain about nor is there much to praise. It feels like a pretty standard comedy made up of a cast of all girls. If you’ve read this far into my review you probably already know if you’re going to like Yuru Yuri or not, so I’ll end it here.