It would have been fun to jump on the bandwagon and slap true shoujo-ai fans with a trout at what has been toted as the greatest failure since humans were created, but no. A proper review needed to be written to not just go with the crowd choice award.
The story has the usual setting; a school, with the main characters being schoolgirls. Pretty obvious stuff, but it needed going over. The anime centers around the life of a first year highschool girl, Fumi Manjōme and her relationship with a popular senior, Yasuko Sugimoto. Of course, there had to be a jealous fan who is also out to snare the popular senior, namely Kyōko Ikumi, as well as Akira Okudaira, a friend to support Fumi.
Their complex interactions in this twisted love quadliteral make up the bulk of the story.
Most of the major drama is skimmed over lightly and it is quite obvious that it is done purposefully, whether it works or not is up to you. It worked fine for me, since I knew this was not meant to be an epic story about saving the world but rather a small slice of life detailing a Class S relationship.
A visual treat. Bright, watercoloured frames with delicious backgrounds and smoothly detailed characters. (Supposedly there is CGI in there, but I could not spot it, I blame my age.)
The shadows are reasonably dynamic and the different times of day are displayed flawlessly with the lighting.
The only thing that stopped me from giving this section full marks was that some scenes were overly bright and hurt my eyes. (Again, must be my age.)
Not much to say here. The OP sounds nice and works perfectly for the animation it was designed for, but after you stop watching the anime it leaves your head. The same goes for the quiet piano instrumentals that echo through the anime at various times.
The voice cast was well chosen. Yasuko's firm unemotional tone, and Fumi's soft, shy voice, which has some sweetness in it is conveyed extremely well. However, Akira takes the cake. The emotion just bubbles out of her voice.
Will be filled in fully later. In short, Akira was undoubtedly one of the most entertaining characters to have on screen. Fumi was one of the most annoying, because of how much she cries, but that added to the anime. Yasuko was too cool and mysterious, and more was needed on her past for us to appreciate her. Kyōko was almost a complete flop, added in to bring an extra dimension to the story but the anime could have done without her. She needed to have her motivation for liking Yasuko explained.
The anime does what it is supposed to.
Detailed visuals with a solid soundtrack and voice cast chosen almost perfectly for the anime make it use up time and provide light entertainment just as it was meant to.
(In closing, this anime got rough treatment from the majority of reviewers, which it did not deserve.)