Natsuiro Kiseki–Anime Early Impressions

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There’s a lot that’s praiseworthy about Natsuiro Kiseki (“Summer-colored Miracle”) but my feelings are rather mixed.

Let’s start with the good part. This is a bright, cheerful and upbeat mix of slice-of-life and fantasy, a story about 4 middle-school girls who discover that the sacred rock at their local shrine can actually grant wishes. (For a somewhat different wish-granting rock see my visit to the Inari main shrine.)

The animation quality is better than average and the scenery is so beautiful it makes me feel good just to look at it.

The characters feel more like they belong in a novel than an anime. Watching this makes me realize just how idealized and unrealistic most anime characters are (or for that matter how idealized and unrealistic most American TV characters are.) These girls really feel like genuine normal middle school girls.

This is not necessarily a good thing. There may be a good reason why most anime characters are idealized. The fact is, real middle school girls can be awfully annoying. (Just ask any middle school boy.)

Two of the girls spend most of the first two episodes in a stupid pointless fight, basically because they are unable to talk about their feelings openly. If they were two boys of the same age they might have had an equally pointless fight, but they probably would have forgotten about it by the next day. Not these two however. They keep right on at it, making things worse, making themselves miserable, upsetting their friends and imperiling their friendship.

Finally they get their comeuppance thanks to the magic rock. If the rock were not there to straighten them out, who knows what would have happened!

Frankly I’m not sure if this can hold my interest. Still it’s a pretty high-quality show in most respects. If you’re not overly allergic to angst it might be worth your while to check it out.