Overview: In this anime, Tsumiki is in love with her friend Io, however confession is impossible for her. Instead she’ll go about her school life with her friends always hopelessly watching Io and waiting for a moment that has probably passed her by a million times. Yet her friends will ensure you never get bored because there is always something happening when this group get together.
I regularly point out that I’m not the biggest fan of comedy, I find slice of life routinely boring, and shows that focus on short skit formats where they set up and execute a punchline before moving on don’t do much for me. Well, this is the anime that can turn all of that over and can keep me watching despite checking every one of those boxes.
The story itself is pretty non-existent. You have your usual shy girl (usually depicted with cat characteristics) who has desperate crush on clueless guy (though how clueless he might be seems to be a matter of question and opinion given he very much seems to enjoy making her blush sometimes) and the usual gathering of friends who at times support and at other times hinder a potential relationship. The series covers about a year or so of their school life so we get the usual Valentine’s Day, White Day, snow fight, Christmas, etc episodes and while they all have their own weird little twist there’s nothing real of note in that particular line up. Unless you happen to think putting frog meat in chocolate for Valentine’s Day is noteworthy, in which case you and Mayoi are going to get on very well.
And that’s where this series works. It does set up everything exactly as you’d expect it to be, but the weird twists it puts on each little segment and its commitment to them just kind of work. They almost never push so far that it feels like they are just frantically clamouring for your attention (the bear costume episode might have been pushing it) but instead give each character a particular trait or tic that they play true in the moment and manage to execute with decent timing to make a truly enjoyable watching experience.
It does get a little repetitive at times and I will admit, I almost never binge this anime. This is a watch an episode while waiting for something to happen or while deciding what I actually want to do kind of show. It gives me a good laugh, I find the characters kind of adorable, and ultimately as long as the trope of girls spraying blood out of their nose every time Io says something ridiculously charming doesn’t make you want to bang your head against the wall, there is little to object to (okay, there’s a bit to object to but the show isn’t trying to make you take it seriously anyway so there’s no real point).
Io and Tsumiki are fantastic and definitely my favourite part of the show. Io has featured on a couple of my top 5 character lists previously and despite having fairly few lines when compared to other characters he makes his presence felt. Mayoi brings in a lot of energy and her mad scientist/inventor persona works well. Sakaki is a great support character to Io and also bounces well off of Mayoi. If there is any weak link in the main cast it would be Hime who as the shy girl character often feels like she’s just a substitute for Tsumiki and doesn’t add a lot more to the cast.
There’s not a lot more to say. Watch this if you want to see how crazy students can make a game of tag while inside a school. Watch it if you have ever imagined having a truly epic snow ball fight. Just watch it if you want to see the single most impressive pen spinning ever to present itself in an anime. There are a lot of great individual moments in a show that as a whole isn’t that impressive and yet can be a great deal of fun.
As always, if you’ve seen the anime, I’d love to know your thoughts so please leave me a comment.
Or, you can visit the bookshop and buy the ebook.