I'm a sucker for Pointlessly CuteTM things, and I figured this would be one of those. It turned out to be so much more.
It's about a kind-hearted single woman in her 30's (?) working at a company who doesn't truly appreciate her, who's friends have all moved on with their more-or-less successful lives. Kaoru feels accutely dissatisfied with her life, and sees no real value in herself. As the episodes go on, you see her as what she is- A lonely, but friendly lady coming home to her "retro" (See:Run down) apartment, where her cute bears Rilakkuma, and the smaller girl bear Korilakkuma, and her pet chicken Kiiroitori all live together.
The animation in the show is outstanding, going into such detail to show the little fuzzies on her animal friends, and the fuzzy knits of her sweaters. The detail is incredible, with each scene going above and beyond. Every scene was like a big, rich, beautiful dollhouse filled with pastels, and bright colors that feel very warm, and inviting.
The characters were all very heartwarming, and the storyline was sweet, and endearing. For a show that I expected to have no more substance that just having cute bears, it left me feeling very fufilled. We get to see episode, and episode again how much Kaoru loves them all, and how much they love her (even going out of their way to clean her apartment, and to get jobs to try and help her out), it's all very, very cute. Including their relationship with the rowdy neighbor boy, who, himself, is very lonely. But, luckily it never goes overboard on the sweetness factor enough to make you feel, well, sick. And, I think that most of what stops itfrom doing so is the fact that Kaoru isn't perfect- She's a bit stuck on the past, but she's trying her best to figure out her spot in life, and the bears can be somewhat selfish at times, but it all flows together very well.
The whole premise of the anime seemed to be about moving on. It's about accepting your present, and that everyone moves through life at a different pace, but that even if your pace is slower than the people around you, that doesn't mean it's bad- Which is something we should all be able to relate to, and learn from. I thought it woud be cute and meaningless, but instead it's cute AND meaningful.
TLDR: 10/10 recommend. Very, very heartwarming. Beautiful animation. Realistic characters. CUTE bears.
What's not to like??