Kokoro Connect is a high school club drama that takes five varied characters and thrusts them into the center of supernatural forces that proceed to wreak havoc with their lives, forcing them to adapt for their own pleasure. Sounds interesting? It did to me as well. Unfortunately after a strong opening arc that tantalizes us with further mysteries to solve those promises of real development and - possibly - getting some answers are never delivered upon. We're left with a production that, if I try to approach it objectively, I can't really call much more than average.
Mix two parts school uniforms and setting, two parts moe, and one part original detail. Blend thoroughly. Serve warm.
Production values are quite good, and there's a good level of detail to go around most of the time. Some scenes are truly picturesque. At other times, there's an unfortunate loss of detail in mid-ground elements that makes it difficult to focus, but this doesn't happen very often over the stretch. Character designs are cute as can be while still managing to remind us of the teenage human form.
Both OPs and EDs are quite catchy and serve well as introductions to the series. Sound effects are nothing remarkable but do their job. Voice work is good - usually. It does get a bit too hammy at times.
In discussion of this series the point has been brought up a few times that the characters are over-the-top or difficult to relate to. I don't really agree with that assessment overall. I've attended three high schools in my time and become familiar with a variety of crowds in that age. If you didn't have the fortune (or misfortune) of meeting people that behave in this fashion that's the luck of the draw, because I met a few in my time and can draw a number of parallels between my own behaviour and psychology as a youth/teen and that of Taichi, the ostensible protagonist.
Their personalities and stories are quite true-to-life, and the way they're forced to develop at a rapid pace is a direct product of the supernatural elements of the plot. The point can definitely be made that these elements are a contrivance. When it comes to the concluding arc I'd even tend to agree more often than not. That doesn't entirely eliminate the effect of more than half a season of strong build-up, however.
Interesting, original premise. Strong opening. Mediocre mid section. Poor ending. It's a downward slope all the way past the first arc - which is a real shame, because the initial episodes hint at the potential for a truly exciting series. Instead we're left with an unfinished mess that takes those pieces that had a chance at greatness and just kind of drops them on the ground.