Disclaimer: In the process of writing this last night I was suddenly kidnapped by the organization, with the release condition being highly confidential. Fret not, no kittens were harmed during the process.
The mecca of moe is back! Quick, grab the moe bible now! All hail KyoAni! After two of their most recent works, Nichijou and Hyouka not looking so hot, with prior runaway success titles like K-On, Haruhi and Lucky Star setting the bar so high, KyoAni “desperately” needed another series to restore the faith of its legions of fans.
Right after Hyouka last season, Chuunibyou steps up to the challenge of satisfying our moe needs, did it succeed where Hyouka had arguably failed? The answer from me is: a resounding yes.
What in the moe god’s name is the term Chuunibyou exactly?
I am mostly paraphrasing here – While there is no strict definition for Chuunibyou, it loosely characterizes a 8th grader (about 14 years of age) in Japan who has been affected by this “mental illness” where they feel as if the universe revolves around them, and/or believing that they possess supernatural powers.
Think of it as the period in life where you are transitioning from a child to a teenager. With the onset of puberty, it feels like the stage where you still have that childlike behavior while having an enhanced level of self-consciousness due to the growth spurt of the mind (and body).
To put it into an example, sufferers of Chuunibyou walk the extreme fine line between being delusional and rational. They come up with an alternate persona in which they believe themselves to be, while at the same time still mentally sound enough to carry out their daily lives normally. As you can see, the term Chuunibyou is hard to construe, but it is a stage in our lives that we are mostly familiar with, since we have the experience of saying “been there, done that”.
Moe is back!
Better Cuter than ever!
As noted by several people, the OP in the actual episode was different from the PVs. Most importantly, the actual OP is seizure-inducing. I didn’t have to check out what people had to say to realize that myself, but the OP is in my own words: “OH SO GOOD, THAT FINGER TWIRLING!” Sorry, I don’t gush normally, but you’ll have to seek my forgiveness when it comes down to KyoAni and their Unlimited Moe Works.
Hey Houtaro (from Hyouka), is that you? Togashi Yuuta (Fukuyama Jun), was “cured” (or rather, graduated) from his chuunibyou having turned 15 (in Japan this is where they enter high school from middle school). With his new-found levels of maturity and self-consciousness, some of us might look back and feel ashamed and embarrassed for behaving like that. In his attempt to bid farewell to his not-so-glorious past, he meets his future ally – The one who holds the Tyrant Eye of the Truth.
Hey Mei (from Another), is that you? What lies under that eye patch then? Could it be?! Coloured contacts sure are convenient for such purposes these days. Takanashi Rikka (Uchida Maaya), fellow chuunibyou-ian, is embodiment of moe this season. With extreme levels of cute with regards to her interactions and reactions, I can’t help but become instantly endeared to this series right from the start.
As the pilot episode, this is pretty much a setup to introduce the (school) setting, as well as the male and female leads. Based on the OP (my eyes..), there are at least 3 more female characters to take the stage, with Nibutani Shinka (Akasaki Chinatsu) having a brief appearance. I wonder what kind of love will blossom between the guy who is attempting to distance himself from his chuunibyou past and the girl who is intent into dragging him back into being the Dark Flame Master. One thing is for sure, more moe and outrageous scenarios are bound to occur.
After watching this episode, I can safely proclaim that this is the KyoAni we know that made them so famous for producing such quality (moe) works. Hyouka wasn’t bad or anything like that, in fact it was rather well done. But to KyoAni and its throng of fans, “well done” just isn’t good enough. With quality animation, trademark moe poses, they knew exactly how to tug at our heartstrings in order to get us viewers hooked into the generic romcom school genre that we’re so sick and tired of (or maybe not).
With Rikka antics alone bringing so much amusement into the picture, I dare not imagine what it would be like when the remainder of the cast enters the fray. While it does seem to follow the standard formula of having a male lead, his sidekick and roughly twice the number of girls, once again – these formulas do work for a reason.
In short, I loved how Chuunibyou is turning out to be. I absolutely adored Hyouka and lamented how I will miss Chitanda and her “watashi kininarimasu”, it looks like I would not have to wait long for that “moe void” to be filled. If anything, I honestly think that Chuunibyou is not only one-upping Hyouka, but also their previous successful titles as well. Even though it is too early to tell at this point in time, I am fairly confident of this claim. We shall see!
- I could almost swear everyone did this “open sesame” move at least once in their lives.
- Someone pointed this out – In the first train scene there is a cameo appearance of students wearing the school uniform from Hyouka. Iseewhatyoudidthere.
- The Konami Code reference!! +10 awesome points.
- Moe loli, moe parents..what’s next?
- Not like it really matters, but wearing an eye patch is essentially being half-blind. Just think about the daily consequences of doing so.
- Decided to throw in a bonus – an animated gif of Rikka twirling her fingers!