Friday, 2 July 2010

Amagami SS - Episode 1

As the second new show of the summer 2010 season, Amagami SS wastes no time in getting to the crux of what ails its protagonist, as we see Junichi Tachibana stood up on a supposed date over Christmas two years ago, an occurrence that would scar anyone for the rest of their lives. By anyone, of course I mean a complete moron, which all too often sums up the lead character in anime based upon dating simulation games.

Anyhow, after that slightly depressing introduction, we get a glimpse at Junichi's present day world, complete with a "planetarium" in his closet and a sister named Miya. While we also get to see a number of the girls who will undoubtedly get their moments in the spotlight as this series progresses through its various story arcs, this opening arc is all about one girl in particular - Haruka Morishima.

Morishima is your pretty typical popular girl at school - She's good-looking, friendly, and on occasion more than a little bit odd if you ask me. Anyhow, after a chance meeting as Junichi drops a bag full of bread after slipping (is it just me or do Japanese schools need to drastically rethink how they sell bread?), followed by another chance meeting as they bump into one another at the library, things seem to be go swimmingly between the two of them. However, things aren't quite as wonderful as Junichi seems to have been led to believe, as his sudden and rather premature confession is dealt an equally severe blow as Haruka rejects him outright. I guess that's what happens when you confess to someone you've only spoken to a handful of times.

Anyhow, from this opening episode of Amagami SS there's certainly nothing which stands out and grabs you by the shoulders - It looks nice enough in terms of animation and character designs, and all of the characters seem to be quite nice individuals, and that in fact sums this instalment up as a whole: It's nice. Not beautiful, not astounding, not terrible, not stupid, just nice. It's nice to be nice sometimes, and as openings go I'm happy to forgive Amagami SS for not laying on too much drama or deep character introspection as it's pleasant enough - It'll have to do a whole lot more to really keep my attention however, as "nice" will only get you so far in life, as Junichi seems to have learned already in this series.

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