Think of the most talented and crazy people you have ever met, and then think of them as high school students, and this will give you a form of the characters you will find at Sakura Hall. The Pet Girl of Sakurasou might not seem like much on the surface, but dive deeper and you'll quickly realise that you're watching a brilliant slice of life which ticks all the boxes and more for what a good slice of life/comedy should be.
The show firstly introduces us to Sorata Kanda, a seemingly everyday guy who doesn't really belong in the Sakura Hall but has ended up there because of rescuing stray cats and being kicked out of the schools normal dorms. To begin with the guys one goal is to escape from the crazy-ness that is Sakura Hall, but as time progresses he comes to regard the place as home and the other members of the place as his friends. The other residents of Sakura Hall include Nanami Aoyama who is training to become a voice actress against her parents wishes. We have Misaki Kamiigusa who is very talented in making anime and has become somewhat famous for it already. Misaki's childhood friend Jin Mitaka also lives at Sakura Hall and writes the scripts for Misaki's anime, although he doesn't always have confidence in his abilities. We also have Ryunosuke Akasaka who is very smart when it comes to computers and very rarely leaves his room, but lastly and by no means least we have Mashiro Shiina who is a world famous artist who has come to Japan in order to learn how to draw manga. Our plot throws Sorata and Mashiro together quite quickly because while Mashiro is a brilliant artist, she doesn't really have much common sense when it comes to the real world, leaving Sorata on "Mashiro duty" and looking after her during her time at Sakura Hall. To begin with our story is quite lighthearted and the first few episodes spend a lot of time on the comedy while also doing some decent character development with the students at Sakura Hall, however it's by far the later episodes of this show which really shine. Once you've gotten to know all this characters, and as the series gives us a deeper look at them all, you realise there is far more to this characters than what first meets the eye, and in time the show evolves into a really strong slice of life which is teaching you what it means to grow up, and to have goals, and to be around people who are far more talented than yourself and don't even realise how different they are. The series does a really great job of dealing with all these emotions and so much more, because of course at this point in the review I've neglected mentioning that Sorata and Mashiro have feelings for one another which grow and are developed slowly, but greatly, over the time we spend with the show.
While it's true that of the 24 episodes in the series, not all add a lot to the story itself while others do a lot to develop the characters, but even so there isn't a signal episode of The Pet Girl of Sakurasou which won't leave you with a smile on your face, or have you laugh out loud at some point during the episode, because that's what the show does and always manages to do with its solid cast of loveable characters. The cast grow and mature and learn a lot during the time we spend watching them, and by the end you can see a great deal of difference in every signal one of them, and feel proud to have gotten to watch them grow and watch all the crazy things these kids got up to. The first three episodes of the series, however, don't do the show justice and you really do need to get through four or five before you realise how special the series is; they aren't bad episodes by any means, they just don't feel as though they have as much depth as the episodes which come after, and once you watch the episodes which have more depth you realise how truly great this series is, how great these characters are, and how much you really feel for them. At heart The Pet Girl of Sakurasou deals with issues we've all gone through at some point which makes it really, really easy to be able to relate to these characters and understand what they'd going through, which is likely what gives the thing such emotion and such a powerful hold over the viewer. Even if you can't relate to what the cast go through, even just watching the relationship between Sorata and Mashiro grow is very pleasing because the series doesn't rush it, it takes it slowly and leaves it feeling right and leaving the viewer happy in the knowledge that this is how things should go, they shouldn't rush into anything and it portrays real-life better because generally a relationship and two people having feelings for one another developers slowly over time, which is how the show deals with it.
As far as the animation goes the series always looks very pretty and well done, and it isn't scared to put more effort in when needed. There is a certain scene about seven episodes in of fireworks and the kids running back to Sakura Hall with them in the background, which is very pleasing on the eye. Character designs are all quite unique too and it's hard not to love these characters one way or another. Overall the series is handled extremely well in terms of animation.
To consider the soundtrack for a moment; that too is handled very well and goes from being quite light and crazy to quite mature and more emotional as the series progresses and the tone of it matures and grows. Again, alike the animation, the soundtrack is handled very well and is always pleasing on the ears. The series also has two really great opening songs along with the first ending being amazingly catchy, the second ending lets things down a bit, but not too much to be a bother.
Overall The Pet Girl of Sakurasou is a brilliant series about growing up and finding your way in life. It's certainly one of my favourite shows now and rightly so, because everything it does is handled really well, and we have a loveable and crazy cast of characters. As long as you get through the first three to four episodes you'll struggle not to fall in love with it and I'd highly recommend the show to every anime fan.
"Completely underrated, from what seams to be a simple situation comedy, turns into a well constructed drama about deep issues that torment us not only as teenagers but adults as well. A good laugh is guaranteed with the bonus of being something more then that, smart, intelligent and well delivered. Must see" -Macedos39 from aniDB.net
I couldn't put this in any better words myself, so i thought i would put that quote in here.
This has to be my favorite anime of all time, you get attatched to each character as the show goes on. The multiple couples in it really keeps the show alive and making you want more. I can't wait for a second season.
after the ending, all i can say is.
top quality anime, pls watch if u like school type anime. good story, well written, funny and exciting.
When i first started watching Sakurasou, I was like "Oh this is just another school guy and awkward girl type Anime." After a couple of episodes I was getting really into it, I was realizing it was much more than just an awkward girl and guy type of anime + all of the house members are becoming a lot more developed and getting into the story. At the final episodes, every single episode had me crying because of how the characters got attached to me. It literally became my second family, it was like I was living the happiness and sadness with the characters. In the end, you can't just build your opinion on Sakurasou only by reading reviews, you just have to watch it for yourself and feel every emotion the Anime will offer you. Deffinitely my personal best romantic, comedy, slice of life Anime.
According to the tags, this anime is a romantic comedy slice of life anime. Between the summary and the picture, that's exactly what it appears to be. The first several episodes suggest that is what it is. It's not. There is a lot of emotion in this anime and the characters are relatable. It has it's happy moments, comedic moments, and romantic moments, but it's not really about all that.
The story starts off with a high school boy, Sorata, living in a special dorm that is seperated from the regular dorms. It's special because it's where the school puts students who are just strange or in Sorata's case, students who insist on not following the rules for the regular dorms. Pets aren't allowed, but Sorata couldn't bare to leave the stray cat he found on the street, so he moved into Sakurasou. Of all the residents, he is the most normal of them all. Jin is a senior who writes scripts and dates so many women at one time it's just insane. Misaki is also a senior who has already created an anime that was a big hit and currently has companies who want her and more. She uses the scripts Jin makes. Akasaka is a first year programmer who stays shut in his room and uses an AI program he created to deal with other people most of the time. Chihiro is the teacher in charge of the dorm and is often seen drunk. She is hardly a model teacher. Then Shina moves in. Shina is a an accomplished famous painter who came to Japan to draw manga. Only problem is, drawing and painting is about all she knows and pays attention too. Sorata has to wake her up, pick out her clothes and tell her to put them on, make sure she wears panties, cook, clean her laundry, and walk her to school. Later his friend, Nanami, moves in. She is in voice acting school, but her parents dissapprove, so she has to work to pay for everything herself and can't afford to live in the regular dorms. Shina and Nanami love Sorato. Misaki loves Jin. Jin loves Misaki but won't go out with her because he knows his scripts aren't on her level and he wants to be recognized as more than just a lover to Misaki. Akasaka doesn't really love anyone but Shinas friend Rita loves him. However, this is only half the story.
Sorata feels inadequate being around Jin, Misaki, and Shina who are already working in the proffesional world. He feels it most around Shina and Misaki because they are already well known. Sorata is interested in making games but doesn't tell anyone and is too afraid to try. Half the story deals with love, however, half deals with the ups and downs of trying to be great. It deals with huge disappointments and struggles. Each of the students has something they want and they don't always make it. Part of why I like it is because unlike many other stories, the characters work super hard and give there all and sometimes they make it and sometimes they don't. A lot of stories try to show that hard work pays off and friendship and love conquers and you can do anything. This story doesn't. It shows that you can try hard, obtain amazing friendships, and love with all your heart, but it doesn't always work out. It also shows that even the talented have to work hard. It deals with feeling inferior while being surrounded by those who seem so much better than you. It's just a really deep and beautiful but very realistic and relatable story. That's why it almost made me cry. I could relate with the characters.
The story and the characters is beautifuly put together. The animation is done well as far as I can tell.
I watched this on animefreak.tv though and a few episodes had a small part here and there that were missing the subtitles. Just wanted to put that in there so you know. It din't seem like anything really important was being said though.
The first half does have it's share of comedy. Some of it isn't really all that funny, but it tries. The second half though is a lot more serious and the story itself doesn't really focus on love. Why it's tagged romantic and comedy, I have no idea. Although it is slice of life, it isn't boring. I highly reccomend this anime unless you are looking for a romantic comedy. If you want romantic and funny, you might not care for this very much.
Overall I give this a 9.5. It's not perfect. I almost always wish the good stories were longer. There should have been another season. However, if they advertised it the same way it is described on the sites, I can see why it didn't. It could have gone a bit more into the background of the main character, but it didn't really need too. The ending was very good still. Sadly by now, it's unlikely they will ever make another season. It's been over two years. :'(