When the girls in the literature club ask themselves, “What do you want to do before you die?” one of them gives a most surprising response. Now they're all preoccupied (for better or for worse) by their friend's unexpected answer! Soon each of these very different young women find themselves propelled along the uncertain road to adulthood, their emotional journeys taking them down paths as surprising as their friend's unconventional wish.
Source: Sentai Filmworks
Araburu Kisetsu no Otome-domo yo, or O Maidens in Your Savage Season, is another series I've been watching for a good while. Based on the manga series by Mari Okada, the series revolves around a group of high schoolgirls attending a literature cub meeting and reading books that would otherwise be considered raunchy if not for the fact that they had become classics. As a way to break the ice, each girl is asked what they wanted the most in life before they died, and one girl's wish takes the girls on a journey through the awkward stages of adulthood. The show isn't that much of an easy watch. To me, there are many moments that can be cringe-inducing, and uncomfortable. But...that is *exactly *how it's like to grow up. You start feeling the changes taking place in your body; your hormones start acting up; you may start picking up on things that you hadn't before, etc. For all intents and purposes, that is where the show shines. Growing up sucks. Let's all be honest with that statement. How each girl copes with it is also different. The protagonist of the series, Kazusa Onodera, is absolutely terrified by the concept of sex, but it becomes even more complicated when she realizes that she was in love with her childhood friend Izumi Norimoto. However, I feel that because of her mind being too preoccupied with the latter, that often comes into conflict with her progress in forming a relationship with Izumi. This is one of my main gripes about the series because while it's apparent that the Izumi x Kazusa relationship will take up a majority of the plot, especially how we now have a third wheel coming into play, but because I find nothing to latch onto, I can't bring myself to care for whether they become a couple or not. Niina Sugawara is considered the crane of her class because of her fair appearance. There's some interesting things to her such as her having taken an acting class or how she can read into people's deep desires, but there is also something...disconcerting about her. Later episodes give more insight into this, but she is still a pretty weird girl. Unlike with Kazusa, though, Niina is more open to her wants and desires which often led her into receiving attention from creeps. Momoko Sudo is Kazusa's childhood friend who also shares her fear of sexuality. At first, I felt that there wasn't much to her character, but one of the later episodes implicates that Sudo may be shifting towards having feelings for unconventional people, judging by her interactions with Niina. This might prove to be interesting. Rika Sonezaki so far is my favorite character. The president of the literature club, Rika at first comes across as a prickly young lady who judges other girls as being harlots. Yes, while she started off being unlikable, it is actually her interactions with another student Shun, and she started to develop. I'm serious, the ending of episode 5 is one of the most beautiful moments I have seen in a long time. Lastly, there s Hitoha Hongo who is an inexperienced author who also writes more...lewdish works. Because of her inexperience in regards to sex, her writing can at best be taken as the writing of a middle-aged man. I am so far loving her interactions with her teacher. Of course, nothing comes out from that, but it is nevertheless sweet. There are other characters such as Izumi who has a deep, deep love for buses and transportation (to the point that the first episode ended with the memorable WTF moment); Yamagishi who became the advisor of the literature club reluctantly; Shun, a young man who treats Rika with dignity; and others. The opening and ending themes are also fairly good. Voice work's good. The animation is also decent. There are some moments where it feels that the animation and lighting are delicately crafted. Overall, the show is not necessarily one of those must watch of the season, but the growing up aspect of it really resonates.
O Maidens in Your Savage Season is a heavy drama-filled show about girls undergoing the bittersweet phase of youth and puberty, where they unravel the mysteries of sex and relationships. It beautifully portraits their anxiety and the unknown feelings they each felt, which they named as "love", though what some of them felt was far away from it. Although this show is about the sexual feelings the maidens experience, there are no echii or unwanted scenes, which is one of the reasons I love this show. Story (9.5/10) This show is about the five maidens of the literature club, who each one of them experience unique feelings, the ones we get in our youth. Feeling anxious about these alien feelings, they go savage and do dumb things. These 16-year olds experience love, attraction to the opposite sex, and... a lot which some of them misunderstand for 'love'. Although the maidens are from the literature club, they don't go quite deep in literature, but it is just used as a way for them to name the feelings they experience. The story itself was quite enjoyable, and unique. It didn't stray off from its path , no garbage but filled with mystery and drama. Animation (8/10) The animation was quite average and nothing commendable on that note. It won't disrupt your watch, and the animation fits everything. The required details are given, not leaving you in the dark. I would say it was quite well done, although I noticed some trivial scenes in the last episode were quite sloppy. Sound (9.5/10) I usually write Animation and Sound section together, but not for this anime. The BGMs blew my mind. It was just beautiful. And oh boy how can I not talk about the opening, it was just amazing. Not only the OP music and the singer, but even the lyrics were amazing and 'fit' right into the story. And as always HoneyWorks did a great job on it. Well deserved. I am currently listening to the OP as I am writing this review. <3 Characters (9/10) Just like every other drama shows, this show too revolves around the characters, the protagonists of this story. All the five maidens play equally weighted roles, which was woven beautifully. Each of the maidens experience unique feelings, anxiety, attractions, confusion, everything that a maiden through puberty would experience. I would also like to mention one more thing. I absolutely loved how they gave flesh for some side characters. I don’t see a lot of shows do this, but I absolutely love it. Overall (9/10) This show was a really memorable one to watch. The plot itself was great, and the way they pulled it off in the end was just amazing. It had a nice ring to it, a bittersweet ending. This show is really under-rated, and I want more exposure for this gem. If you like drama between characters, with a pinch of comedy, this show is for you. Even if you don’t like, Watch it :< Believe me, just give this show a chance. You won't regret it.
About it's bright pastel colour pallete, I really love it. For the story of course it is just typical highschool romance and comedy. But it has an ecchi touch on it for the story tells about this group of highschoolers who are entering young adulthood. Despite it's common grounds of story, more immature or naive thinking into understanding young adult things in their highschool life, I think their sensitivity to the concept of "sex thing" was the main point that shows their different deals and story along. My favorite character is Sugawara san, she appears to be quite, composed and said to be more mature and outspoken, but slowly her past was revealed along the episodes. With her being a reason for a love triangle (Kazusa x Izumi), I didn't felt her as a thread though since if she ends up as one, it'll be a unsatisfying and floppy ending. I like how each protagonist has their own story and progress (about Momoko, then Sonezaki x Shun, Prof. Milo x Hitora). The ending wasn't that extreme or drastic but more of a concept of youth and friendship (as literature club) leaving that one thing that troubles them from the beginning (the sex thing).
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