Shikimori's Not Just a Cutie

Alt title: Kawaii dake ja Nai Shikimori-san

TV (6+ eps)
2022 - ?
Spring 2022
3.792 out of 5 from 1,654 votes
Rank #1,962

Shikimori and Izumi are high school sweethearts. They hold hands walking home from school, they flirt in the halls, they tease each other. But Shikimori knows what she wants and how to get it. She can turn from cutie to cool in an instant and Izumi loves to be around when that happens!

Source: Kodansha

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Shikimori's Not Just A Cutie is a pretty episodic series. It is a romantic comedy featuring the main couple Izumi and Shikimori. The gist of the series is: Izumi, being accident-prone, gets in trouble but his girlfriend saves him and looks cool from it. So, nothing really happens, but that is to be expected. Since the manga is centered on Shikimori, of course, many of the episodes consist of her saving Izumi from getting hurt. It is a typical slice-of-life but isn't anything too offensive. Like I am amused that Shikimori is determined to keep Izumi safe at all costs, and that is admirable. Izumi. I don't hate him per se, but he suffers from being the generic male MC in an anime series. He is accident-prone, so much so, I am always amazed that he never died even before he began dating Shikimori. However, his other flaw is unassertiveness, with him striving to be just as assertive as Shikimori is. He does have his own good points such as being an eternal optimist despite him being a cosmic plaything, and he does save a girl who was floating down the river away from the other lake goers. But for the most part, he is bland. Shikimori is arguably the more interesting character due to her being the focus. She is athletic and competitive. She loves Izumi despite all his faults...but that by itself can be somewhat troubling. One of the tropes I greatly dislike is when the girlfriend suspects their significant other is unfaithful or paranoid that other girls might try to take him. When it happened the first time, it was funny. A second time? Slightly less funny, but not annoying. A third or fourth time? It becomes an insufferable running gag. I swear any time she became jealous of some other girl I would imagine her transforming into Yuno Gasai 2.0 and going on a rampage. For instance, she accuses Izumi's best friend of trying to date Izumi even though that is clearly not the case. Or another time during the beginning of their summer vacation and they decide to go to the lake, she becomes jealous of a poster depicting a woman in a bikini. Just because Izumi was staring at it. Or how about when Izumi saved that little girl I alluded to and was rewarded with a peck on the cheek. She whines about it. My god, it was just a kiss on the cheek that did not mean that the younger girl liked Izumi the same way you do chill out. It's just a child. It's kind of unsettling just how clingy she can be with Izumi when it is unwarranted. This is slightly mitigated by her revealing that she was much like Izumi and was unassertive when she wanted to date him. As for the other characters, they are not given as much focus like the main couple. They are flat and sometimes forgettable. Kind of like how I fondly call Shu Discount Bakugo. The animation fits the type of series this is, and the soundtrack is good if a smidge forgettable.    


6 Episodes In: Honest Opinion Being brutally honest, this anime is a solid: okay. The wow-factor in this anime is simply the animation changes of the female lead (shikimori -- who is a badass). I liked how the animation turns super detailed, and the entire art style changes when shikimori turns on her badass switch. This made the episodes really fun to watch for a while. As such I gave animation a 8/10. I was not expecting high-tier animation in a romcom. But since it was a 2022 summer anime, I was curious to see how good it could be.  The story is original but generic at the same time. It has some of the mainstream arcs, and side characters. But nowadays its fairly hard to make something too original anyways. They add some twists or changes to some mainstream arcs, (i.e instead of a summer vacation to the beach, they go to a river).  Sound 5/10, nothing special, nothing horrible. Normal.  Characters 8/10, I liked how the MC was the shy, nervous, and unlucky af character. I also liked how the female was the badass, and again, this was the whole premise of the show.  OTHER: I liked how they were in a relationship (so I don't have to sit and watch another 12 eps of a romcom just for it to end on a cliff hanger). Going forward in the remaining episodes, I already can tell it will be somewhat the same as other romcoms but lets hope.  If you're looking for something that is somewhat mainstream, but has a small twist in characters and arcs. Then watch Shikimori's Not Just a Cutie. Lastly, this is a SUPER WHOLESOME romance anime. If you are looking for like heartbreak, tears, anger, action, I suggest you don't watch this!  Hopefully this helps! Overall: 7.5/10.

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