Final words on Ano Natsu: sorry for the delay

I actually finished Ano Natsu de Matteru weeks ago. Sadly, however, I haven’t been able to log on for quite some time due to issues with my connection. It ended very well, save for the Men in Black hijinks, but it was a nevertheless very well done series. The video of the friends spending their summer together despite their separation with Ichika was honestly tearjerking, and the uncertainty and sadness with Ichika being spirited away from Kai was quite overwhelming.

This was my feeling when I finished Ano Natsu. 🙂

I was happy with how it ended, though, and how it subtly showed Ichika’s return. I had no expectations whatsoever with the series, but it was honestly one of the best Winter 2012 had to offer. I honestly doubt it would end up as one of the best of the year, however, especially with the strength of the Spring season. It was a series one could say little about, but it was a great series simply because it did everything in its ability exceptionally well. It was great with its handling of its characters; it was great with evocation and although the plot was barebones the rest were enough to carry the series beautifully.

And yes, it was better than Ano Hana. Any dissenting opinions? 🙂

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5 Responses to “Final words on Ano Natsu: sorry for the delay”

  1. Sorrow-kun Says:

    No, not on that last point. But I’ll fight anyone in the street who says it’s better than Toradora!.

  2. Angelus Says:

    OK, Michael, I’ll take you up on that 🙂

    I know I’ve said a few quite negative things here about Ano Hana in the past, but looking back on it now, my views have changed somewhat and I now regard it as a truly great anime. For one thing, it avoided most of the tired old clichés – no girls fell from the sky, there were no mysterious transfer students, no harems were formed and so on – and for another, it managed to handle the very sensitive issues surrounding the untimely death of a child without the slightest hint of mawkishness. Despite some initial misgivings over the pacing, I now think that virtually everything was perfectly judged from start to finish. The ending too was satisfying, and I think benefited from not revealing the exact circumstances of Menma’s death. The only negative comment I can still make about it is that the histrionics of the final episode still seem excessive and out of place, but that’s probably just my British “stiff upper lip” reacting to the Japanese “crying boom” of recent years (which I was not aware of back then) so I’ll give it the benefit of the doubt even on that.

    As for Ano Natsu, if its ingredients had to be listed on its label, they would be simply “Clichés: 100%”. Which is not to say that you can’t create something remarkable out of clichés (look at Iriya no Sora, UFO no Natsu, for example), but starting off with a bunch of clichés and then rehashing the plot and the characters of another anime itself built largely out of clichés is not a promising start. Of course within that utterly formulaic framework, there were still some truly wonderful things, including one of the finest portrayals of selfless love that I have seen for a long time (poor Kanna). And yes, I did cry at the end when I saw that Ichika had been able to return to Earth. But taken as a whole, I’m afraid that, for me, Ano Natsu is in a completely different league to Ano Hana.

  3. Michael Says:

    Angelus:

    I don’t think it’s a British ‘stiff upper lip’ sensibility that disgusted you with regard to the histrionics of the final episode as I’m technically in a ‘Latin-American’ Asian country and I still thought of it as overwrought. Even my sister who is actually fond of those things thought it was a bit too much. I do respect the change of your opinion as everyone is entitled to that. 🙂

    With regard to Ano Natsu, I loved the fact that while it re-used cliches, it was very sincere in doing so. The characters were also quite novel in the sense that they weren’t mawkish martyrs but just decided to chase after what they felt, in all sincerity. Kanna was one of the characters I hated beforehand but learned to appreciate after all that selflessness. In fact, most of the major characters that composed the series were selfless to an extent. So that’s where I disagree with you. It may only have been one episode for Ano Hana, but it destroyed the series for me. Nevertheless, I’m grateful for your honesty and for still following my blog after all this time. 😀

    (I couldn’t log on to the blog for about two weeks even though I had much to say, but all of that fizzled out 🙁 )

  4. -chii- Says:

    YES! I totally agree that this show was better (if only slightly) than Ano Hana!

  5. Oscar Says:

    Well… i disagree greatly about comparing it to AnoHana
    AnoHana had depth…
    AnoNatsu had… a good director/character designer/music…
    characters stories were good eps were interesting but 5 years from now i would say “man i miss good old anime like AnoHana” and would need someone to remind me what is this anime they used to call AnoNatsu.

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