Final Review: Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Come wa Machigatteiru

Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Come wa Machigatteiru (or Oregairu for short) is based on a series of ongoing light novels. It follows Hachiman Hikigaya, a pramatic high school student who believes that the idea of youth is nothing more than a delusion. Unfortunately, his peers nor his teachers see it the same way. His attitude ultimately leads to him being forced to join the Service Club ran by the beautiful Yukino Yukinoshita, who happens to also have no friends. Thus begins the romantic comedy life of Hachiman Hikigaya. Oregairu premiered during the Spring 2013 anime season, was simulcasted by CrunchyRoll, and was licensed by Sentai Filmworks.

Oregairu starts off as a very boring show. The characters are bland and the interaction is very monotone. A simple school life romantic comedy with effectively no twists or turns. In fact, the back story of the characters are incredibly shallow and we don’t ever learn anything new about the characters. The occasional flashbacks only restate facts already presented about the characters in the present. So what makes this show so hyped in this season? Personally, I don’t see much in terms of value but there is a gradual progression that makes the characters a bit more interesting and I guess funny. On the other hand, the memorability is lacking. The series also feels more heavy in the slice of life department than the “expected” romantic comedy series not that it’s a bad thing since it attempts to use social psychology as justification of the “facts” of life. Not to mention the slower pacing makes the show seem far more realistic in terms of development. However, people who claim that it takes one out of the “ideal” school setting found in most similar anime is just flat out wrong as this show continues to throw in the typical cliches. The cliches are only used differently but are certainly still there. Conclusion wise, the series abruptly ended at episode 12 and episode 13 was a side story, as expected from an ongoing work.

In the art department, characters are nicely drawn though they seem to differ from the source a bit. Animation basically tells me this is where all of Brains Base’s animation went this season unlike Aku no Hana. Visually it’s very colorful and attention to detail is very well done in this show. My big complaint is really during the school festival during the music performance where the characters moved as if they were attached to springs. Very stiff movement and heavily recycled animation.

OP/ED are pretty average. Nothing particularly noteworthy in this heavy season. The soundtrack is also pretty average overall. Seiyuu is overall solid. Saori Hayami has impressed me quite a bit lately, especially when I consider that she never stood out in Basquash as Violette as the first role I recall seeing her in.

Enjoyment? Show is a tad overhyped. The show really is basically Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai crossed with Medaka Box/Sket Dance and to some extent OreShura. Take out of the supernatural elements of Medaka Box as well as the sadist/masochists of Haganai and you effectively get this show. A bland series that attempts to depict a “true” school life setting when in itself is also nothing but an illusion. I will certainly give it points for trying but there are other titles that do this better, most notably Genshiken, which happens to be getting a new season in the upcoming Summer 2013.

Overall, Oregairu is not a bad show but it doesn’t have a solid hook either. Haganai is leagues above this in basically everything that Oregairu tries to do. Heck, one could even argue that for the slice of life department of this show.

 

Story and Character:

  • Premise (0/1): BORING
  • Character Personalities (0.5/1): Clever naming convention
  • Character Development (1/2): There but all it does is restate facts in a different form
  • Character Usefulness/Presence (1/2): Most characters are one-offs
  • Pacing: (1/1): Nothing really wrong
  • Reasonable/Plausible (1.5/2): Slice of life. Good social and psychological reasoning and developments. Too many typical anime cliches that counteract what it’s trying to do at times.
  • Conclusion (0.5/1): Abrupt but expected
  • Total: 5.5/10

Art and Animation:

  • Backgrounds (1.5/2): Above average.
  • Character Designs (1.5/2): Good but supporting is rather messy.
  • Fluidity (1.5/2): Band performance has serious issues
  • Visuals/Special Effects/Flashiness (2/2): Very colorful
  • Art and Animation “Expectation” (1/2): I’ve seen better from Brains Base but this certainly beats Aku no Hana out of the park.
  • Total: 7.5/10

Sound and Music:

  • OP/ED/Insert Themes (1.5/3): Average with no long term memorability
  • Background Music (1/2): Average
  • Sound Effects (1/2): Average
  • Seiyuu (2.5/3): Solid seiyuu cast. Supporting roles could be a bit better
  • Total: 6/10

Enjoyment:

  • Amusement (1/2): Had its perks. Though some jokes are way overused
  • Weekly/Next Episode Anticipation (0.5/2): Very little
  • Presentation (1/2): Slapstick is a bit ambiguous. Took about 4-5 episodes to get interesting only to become uninteresting 4-5 episodes later.
  • Re-watchable (0/1): Not really.
  • Recommendation (0.5/2): Genshiken, Haganai, Medaka Box.
  • Value (0/1): Nope
  • Total: 3/10

Preliminary Score: 7/10

Final Score: 6/10

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