Kotoura-san

(12 episodes)

What’s it about ?

Being a young telepath with soul-crushing angst is apparently no obstacle to starring in a high school comedy show.

Characters

Haruka Kotoura, the title character. She’s been able to read the thoughts of people around her ever since her early childhood. As a result, she’s considered a creepy monster. (The show makes a convincing case about how her innocently blurting out secret thoughts would make the lives of everyone around her a living hell.) By the time she transfers to yet another high school, she lives alone and purposely aleniates herself from anyone else (as it’s less painful than people she’s grown to care for eventually leaving her). That’s until she meets…

Manabe, the guy sitting next to her in class. He’s not creeped out at all by Haruka’s mindreading, barely taking notice to try and have a bit less erotic daydreams around her. While he’s a bit of a weirdo, he legitimely wants to be her friend (or more), and promises never to leave her.

The OP/ED indicates that she’s going to make more friends. That’s going to be a tall order indeed. Also, her mother is apparently going to stay as part of the supporting cast, which is a bit surprising given the way she abandoned her daughter.

Production Values

This doesn’t have a high budget, but it knows how to make do with it. In particular, there’s a nice effect with the colours progressively becoming greyer and more monochrome as Haruka’s life spirals into hell, until bright colours smash back in when she meets Manabe.

There’s also quite some creativity with Manabe’s mindscape.

What did I think of it ?

This really should be a hideous style clash, abruptly switching from borderline-manipulative melodrama to “traditional” high-school hijinks. But it’s fiendishly effective, setting up the show’s gimmick and the main couple’s relationship with a poignancy that a pure gag show couldn’t hope for. It helps that the narrative doesn’t cheat : other people’s reactions to Haruka are often unkind, but feel entirely human.

I’m not quite sure how the series can maintain this balance in the long run, but I’m hooked.

via [In which I review] New anime, Winter 2013 – Page 6.

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Jhiday

I've been kinda blogging about anime for years... but mostly on forums (such as RPG.net's Tangency) and other sites. This site is an archive for all that stuff, just in case.

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