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Posted on: March 28, 2012 10:51 pm by small image

With finales piling up left and right, it was a bit sad to see this one’s. One thing is for sure, Winter 2012 wouldn’t be the same without Ano Natsu de Matteru. (I didn’t spoil the ending much, for you guys who didn’t get to watch this, but all the same, there will be some spoilers)

But before all that, you guys may have realized that I started following this series episodically here, but stopped at around episode five. The reason? Well, I don’t have much of an excuse really. It aired at Tuesday mornings, and since I had classes and stuff, I couldn’t really watch it until I got back home but by then I’m just too exhausted. So yeah, I apologize and here’s a review to make up for it. >.<

In the episodes that I did manage to cover, I expressed how much I was loving the direction in this series – almost reminiscent of AnoHana. For the most part AnoNatsu maintained it. The clever use of frame angles and segues into the ED song added just a pinch more drama to the “almost” tear-jerking concoction of romance, comedy and teen angst. The romance aspect, although very entertaining later on, didn’t play out as much for the other characters as much as I had hoped for in the end. Of course, our main couple, Kaito and Ichika, get special treatment in that regard, but I personally didn’t like their chemistry as a couple. It’s hard to put into words, but let’s just say they lack that special “something”.

The comedic part of AnoNatsu is a mixed bag for me. Some jokes worked, while some just didn’t. Besides, almost everything funny that happened was all thanks to our tiny-senior Remon, and by the end of the series she quickly became my second favorite character (first is Mio of course). Her character started out very…weird, and I honestly didn’t think I’d like her as much as I did. More so since most of those who do like her are fans of Onegai Sensei, since she bears a striking, almost twin-like resemblance to one of its characters.

A majority of the time though, angst is the one that goes well with the story’s flow. I mean, it’s five friends caught up in a web of affection and unrequited love, how can their not be angst?

Story-wise, the series was pieced together rather nicely. It’s not perfect though, but I do commend on how the movie became that something that Kaito wanted to do that summer. It, according to the guys themselves, had everything they could ever have hoped for for their first summer vacation as high school students. We see them undergo all the fun times and the sad times, and I’d like to speak for everyone that has watched it and say that that alone made the conclusion to their “movie” all the more moving.

Then again, the movie wouldn’t be possible without it’s wonderful cast. That is to say, the characters are the driving force of this series. We have Kaito, a head-over-heels romantic who’s willing to do anything, anything at all for Ichika, who’s also a romantic deep down but is all the more troubled by it because of her being an alien. There’s Kanna, the girl that would trade her own happiness in exchange for the happiness of the subject of her unrequited love, and cheers him on regardless. Tetsurou, the childhood friend that never really got to express his feelings that were more than just being “brother”. Of course, Mio, the shy nudist-at-home girl that cares for her friends very much but loves Tetsurou who was the first to take notice of her. And finally, Remon, who’s mysterious antics end up bringing all of them as close as can be to realizing their true feelings. The dynamics between their relationship as friends was a big part of this series’ development.

As for the other stuff, visuals were very nice and in some cases very Toradora!-like. The music is okay-ish, but the ED song “Bedoro Moyou” by Nana Yanagi is extremely good, and, as I said before, it segues pretty well.

Ano Natsu de Matteru joins the ranks of the finest dramatic romances out there. I hope they don’t plan on making a sequel for this (something in the same universe would be cool though) since, those friends really are “waiting for that summer” when they could all meet again and I think that that’s already a nice ending right there.