Thursday, March 28, 2013

"Sakurasou no Pet na Kanojo" Anime Review

Sorry for the late posting of this anime review. I actually had it posted 2 days ago on my Animeplanet profile but for whatever reason Blogger would not let me upload a post the last two days. 
Well after two back-to-back seasons, Sakurasou no Pet na Kanojo has completed (for now) and I have to say that I already miss its charm.

Story: 6/10
Out of the main four categories, the plot is the least appealing but by no means a hindrance to the show. The anime starts out by introducing Sorata and the other main members of an off-campus dormitory, Sakurasou. Sorata is forced to move into the off-campus dormitory due to his collection of stray cats. What becomes very apparent to Sorata as he is moving in is that this dormitory does not host ordinary students; in fact it houses the most socially unaccepted students he has ever met. Towards the end of the initial episode, he is introduced to the “pet” of Sakurasou, Mashiro who is an extremely talented artist. What then unfolds over the twenty four episodes is a couple of story arcs revolving around the daily lives of the members of Sakurasou and more importantly the growing relationship between Sorata and Mashiro as he is put in charge of basically keeping Mashiro alive since she cannot do her own laundry, get dressed, or pretty much anything a normal person could do. What becomes common knowledge by the second episode is that every member at Sakurasou is extremely gifted at something. It is this element that helps Sorata (who has no clue what his special talent is) grow as a person. This becomes one of the primary focal points for the show (on top of the relationship between him and Mashiro). Now don’t get me wrong every episode is interesting to watch but the pacing is quite slow especially in the beginning when the show is trying to set up all the plot elements. Also the ending episodes have some serious melodrama that is quite awkward to sit through even though Nanami is the cutiest thing ever. As far as the comedy aspect (since most slice of life anime have some sort of comedy) goes, there is an element of running gags and slapstick style humor (it’s spotty here and there) that the anime retains throughout all twenty four episodes. It’s not distracting or a hindrance but is by no means on the level of Gintama

Animation: 8/10
The animation in this anime is quite good and the quality remains in check throughout the entire double season run. The colors are bright and very soft which helps give it a unique look compared to the other slice of life dramas going on at the moment. Also the character models are not super realistic but not too undefined; you can say it is in the sweet spot of normal awesomeness. All of the characters especially the female leads are drawn very well in fact I am going to go on record and state that Nanami is by far the most adorable character…EVER. Overall the animation isn’t eye dazzling but still pretty damn awesome to look at.

Sound: 7.5/10
I quite liked the sound used in this anime. Both the soundtrack and the voice actors really helped set the mood for each scene perfectly. I liked all the main cast’s voice actors but the back and forth conversations between Sorata and Mashiro were amplified (I use that word too often) by their respective voice actor’s performance. Since this show (and pretty much every slice of life) relies on conversations as a means to progress the plot, it is vitally important for the voice actors to express their character’s emotions to their fullest ability. I feel safe in saying that the cast of Sakurasou no Pet na Kanojo will not let you down. As for the soundtrack it fit very well within the anime and both the opening and closing themes were catchy and well done. Great sounding anime too bad it gets overshadowed by Tamako Market.

Characters: 8.8/10
I’ll just put this out here first; this is completely skewed depending on who is watching the show. I personally loved the cast because you (and by you I really just mean me) feel an established connection between the members of the dormitory very early on and there is suitable character development for each character. Heck even the recluse and shut-in Ryuunosuke matures quite a lot between when he first introduced all the way until the final episode. Each character also goes through a sort of epiphany stage at one point during the show. Sorata, Nanami, and Jin all come towards some sort of realization on what they need to do with their lives after facing many setbacks and hardships. I for one enjoyed seeing all three of them at the lowest and highest point while they were on this journey. Also the clashing between main characters while at the moment of occurrence is saddening, the resolution that follows is so enjoyable to see through. Overall the sense of connection and how each character interacted with one another felt so natural that I feel safe saying this is one of the best slice of life casts I can think of (catching onto the theme going on?).    

Overall: 7.6/10
After seeing what amount the four categories added up to, I feel as if it represents the show quite well. While the cast, sound, and animation are so spot on, the pacing and amount of “super over reactive highschoolness feelings” really dragged the show down for me. HOWEVER, you really should give this anime a shot because it has that level of charm that will cause you to smirk and smile throughout each episode (unless you know it ends on a sad or sour note).

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