(Featured image(s) belong to their respective copyright holders, Aniplex, A-1 Productions, Fujimi Shobo)
Have you ever dreamed of making a game? A game that would shake the foundations of otaku society? Well, in Saekano: How to Raise a Boring Girlfriend, our protagonist, Tomoya Aki, does just that. By gathering up friends and relatives, he aims to create the ultimate dating simulator anyone has ever seen. Only problem is the heroine he chooses is rather flat and… well 3D. Through his tutelage and training she becomes the ideal heroine and unexpectedly becomes fond of our protagonist. This rather short anime is an interesting one to say in the least. It’s fan service scenes are to be expected yet, this anime retains a very comical appeal to it and manages to operate rather smoothly within the confines of what it is able to do. Even the last episode was outstanding and ended on a great note, yet was left open for a possible, hopeful second season.
In terms of the quality, being a new anime, the art style is refreshing and delightful on the eyes. All of the animations, emotions and characters move flawlessly and gives the viewer an eye candy delight. As stated above this anime runs a fair bit in the fan service department, episode 0 being just that in the beginning by introducing us to all of the characters. So, being a place that doesn’t talk much about fan-service, I shall end it there because I feel that fan-service, while all well and fine, doesn’t always need to be so prevalent. in the shows that we watch. However, Saekano handles it with a bit of maturity and while it does tend to over utilize it, it uses it just enough to convey a point and or meaning. Heck, it even goes out of its way to make fun of itself for using fan-service in its anime.
A bit a go in an article I featured an image from the opening credits of Saekano for my discussion on anime music. While one of the characters in this anime is a musician, the music doesn’t take a high note, however the music itself is outstanding and joyful to listen to. The opening song, Kimiiro Signal by Haruna Luna, is just as delightful to listen to. I even went to the U.S. iTunes page just to purchase it because it flows so well. The music is really a high note at the end as one of the characters debuts in a school band, their opening song being a cover of, Sorairo Days by Shoko Nakagawa, it was a super delightful nod to fans of the Gurren Lagann series and fans of the song itself. I felt rather giddy hearing the guitar opening and knew then I was in for a treat. The sound effects and over exaggerated sounds we all come to know from anime don’t disappoint and add a cute and silly aura about the anime.
As far as story goes, there aren’t really any sad moment as there are cute and odd moments. The anime of course follows the main characters goal of trying to produce a game that would be the envy of all dating games the world has ever seen. So, it follows our characters and his developers around their daily toils in trying to develop for this game and their eventual finishing of the first arc of the game. Again the story leaves a very wonderful opening for more seasons that will discuss and explore the development of the other arcs of the game, hopefully leading to more funny moments and of course, the eventuality of more fan-service. Though, it also goes to explore how the various characters feel towards our main character, as each have had a romantic interest in the character at some point, it also decides to explore his cousin’s very close relationship with himself as well, however it hardly has time to develop due to being introduced only two episodes away from the ending. However, each character’s interest is profound and often times cute and romantic as they fumble along with wondering why they would be interested in our main character, as he heavily dabbles in the otaku lifestyle.
Overall, this anime is a well drawn, artistic, and playful anime. If you are looking for something to pass the time and enjoy a few laughs and a fair bit of fan-service as well as playful relationships. The anime can currently be enjoyed via Crunchyroll with a free membership or an ad-free Premium membership, as well as on Hulu! Since this article is coming out on Easter, for those who may be religious, I hope you all have a very enjoyable Easter and for everyone else, enjoy the egg hunts and the free goodies! Also, I should note that as much as I mention Crunchyroll it does not mean I am being sponsored by them or forced to mention them in anyway. I believe in legal means of viewing anime and as convoluted as corporations can be, I believe paying 6.95USD to watch anime early is a small price to pay, than pirating and hurting the companies that take the time to produce the anime we all love. So give it a look and remember you can always make a free membership!
Official Site Anime (Japanese Only): http://www.saenai.tv/
Official Site Light Novel (Japanese Only): http://www.fujimishobo.co.jp/sp/201211heroine/