Friday, May 20, 2011

Hanasaku Iroha - First Impression

Title: Hanasaku Iroha
Genre: Comedy, Drama
12 Hana-Saku Iroha
When her mother runs off with her latest boyfriend, Ohana Matsumae is sent to live with her grandmother, who she has never met nor spoken to. Her grandmother is not pleased to find Ohana on her doorstep, and sets her to work at her Taisho-era (1920s) hot springs inn. It's not a lifestyle that Ohana would have chosen, but she decides not to be discouraged and to make the most of her difficult circumstances.
“Hana no Iro (ハナノイロ)” by nano.RIPE

This show is one of my favorite this spring season mainly because it’s a combination of drama and comedy and surprisingly those contrasting genre works well together in this series. In this series we follow the story of Ohana Matsumae who has one ass of a mother who sent her to her grandma's inn while her mother eloped with another man. Unfortunately Ohana's grandma is not as sweet as other grandmas out there so instead of living a carefree life in her grandma's inn she has to work there as a payment for staying at the inn. When Ohana was still a child she was taught not to rely on anyone unfortunately whenever she apply that she always gets hurt in the process since in the inn where she works, she has to rely on someone (Oh come on, what kind of a mother teaches her child not to rely on anyone…she's just a child! Mothers like her should be burned to the stake for being so irresponsible mwhahaha!!). As Ohana come across other people in the inn her life have taken another turn as she tries to readjust to her new life.

There's this theme that is prominent in the first episode of the series where we see Ohana struggling to decide what she wants for her future and somehow it struck me since currently as my summer vacation is almost coming to an end, I got this feeling that time flies so fast that I wonder if I'm making the right decision(since sometimes I wonder if writing in a blog is the right way to spend my vacation or should I spend it by studying) because honestly, time won't wait for me to make the right decisions.

What really made this series enjoyable to watch is its characters. Just watching Ohana counter her problems with that never say never attitude is really fun to watch. Not only does this girl have a very cute face and facial expression, I also like her determined and hard-working attitude of hers. Its also fun see that pushy side of hers that either drag her new found friends to her various antics or she evokes various responses to the other people around which in turn the viewers could see the other side of their personality. Oh I almost forgot to mention Ohana's grandma who you will find a bit harsh in the first few episodes but I think she's just training Ohana and maybe eventually, she'll let Ohana inherit the inn. I really think grandma is not what you really think she is and I think eventually she'll learn to love her grand daughter. There's also this guy who is a writer that have been staying in the inn for quite some time which is quite annoying at first but he's really hilarious. I love him for writing that ero-novel about Ohana and friends and to boot that up P.A. Works really animated it and it was fantastic and oh so hilarious. We've only uncover a bit of the side character's story and so far its really interesting specially Nako's character and we saw Minchi slightly opening up to Ohana but still I still find her as an annoying bitch.

As expected of P.A. Works their animation is just breath taking that I think the animation is already a work of art. The backgrounds and surroundings are simply amazing with its very detailed animation. Its only the television version what more if it’s the Blu-Ray ahhhhh my eyes would have popped out of its sockets. The character design is also another one to boast since not only does it look realistic they are also very adorable even grandma's character design is very pleasing to the eyes. Oh also the facial expressions are really dynamic and with that you could really feel the emotions of the characters.

The OP Hana no Iro by nano.RIPE sure is a nice song but I'm not particularly fond of the voice work but at least it fits the mood of this series. The ED song on the other hand Hazy by Sphere is really catchy and I can't wait to hear the full version of it. The ending song really ends the series in a high note and the ED stills are really gorgeous. I really like this current song by Sphere instead of the OP of Otome Youkai Zakuro which was also sung by them. Hmmmm of all the ED song this season think its my favorite.

 “Hazy” by Sphere

Oh yeah, I definitely enjoyed this series so far since with just the 2nd episode I never thought that it could pull emotions on me. Week after week I'm really looking forward for it to turn Monday already so that I could grab a copy of the subbed version already. So far this series is really promising though its pacing is quite slow its still entertaining and that's fine since this is a slice of life show so that's typical pacing. If they continue to make the characters more entertaining to watch and as their story unfolds I hope we get more attached to them and eventually sympathize with them also, since this is a slice-of-life show I'm expecting to learn a LOT from this show and I'm challenging this show to make me cry just like what Clannad After Story did. Don't disappoint me P.A. Works!

Until then

~ ja

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