“I mean… everyone can only do what they can. If you try hard at something you can’t do, it only hurts in the end.” —Tsumugu Kihara.
Here is a question that’s sure to make your head hurt: How important is animation in an anime and how much does it influence your viewing pleasure? Also, how bad does it have to be to break an anime, and what exactly are the rules of amazing animation?
While watching the latest P.A Works installment, I asked myself these questions and as is expected, I couldn’t find the answer to the question “How much bullshit do we have to take just for 10 anime wallpapers a minute?“
The tale tells the story of five sea-dwellers and one land-dweller as the sea school is shut down and Hikari, Manaka, Chisaki and Kaname are forced to attend school on land, and thus begins their adventure of youth, friendship, love, family, acceptance and ultimately, growing up.
The story of Nagi No Asukara shares some interesting ideas; The ambition, polish and setting are there, but it’s the painful excecution that breaks the show, making it feel like a flawed amateur project that, thanks to that, makes me overlook all the good that this show has to offer.
When I talk about excecution, I mean the flat characters with a single characteristic, dragged out relationships (or lack of) and exactly zero sense of drama. It’s melodramatic, it’s cheesy, it’s fuckin’ annoying, and this isn’t just me being subjective either.
With a Disney-esque setting like this, the wasted potential upsets me more than it should.
Yes, the endless praises for NagiAsu’s “amazing” character development are –mostly– true. Yes, they mature and yes, it’s pretty good.
Want to hear the part that’s a little less good? This “amazing” character developments happens for maybe two or three characters. The rest stay exactly the same even before the *spoiler* timeskip. Highlight it if you wanna know, I guess.
Sigh, are the characters entertaining? Well, ish. Characters like Kaname and even Hikari and Manaka hit a chord within me, but the rest of the cast are boring andor annoying, there is no inbetween.
Nagi No Asukara has the prettiest animation I’ve seen in a while, giving me the Summer feels even in Winter. Be it the magnificent colouring, movements or fluidity of it all, NagiAsu is impressive, and I have to give P.A Works that much credit at least. I’m not exactly sure what they do to make it look so friggin’ gorgeous, but somehow, they keep the quality up for a whole 26 weeks and I admire this.
Subjective-Objective Final Verdict
I think I’ve made it fairly obvious that I don not like Nagi No Asukara for anything but it’s animation and the few moments of gold this show has, however, my opinion is fairly irrelevant as I don’t like melodrama to begin with.
Fans of Anohana may get a kick out of this, but subjectively NagiAsu is nothing more but a dragged on show about a group of confusedhormonal teenagers and their tyring relationships and troubles; All while being animated beautifully.
Objectively speaking, the story is A+ and the cast is colourful but the excecution is still flawed. If you like these kind of stories, Nagi No Asukara might be your best bet, especially when accompanied by animation of this caliber.
All in all, Nagi No Asukara gets a subjective-objective rating of 5.3 out of 10, a recommendation to watch it if you feel like something melodramatic. Furthermore, check out the afromention AnoHana if you haven’t already for the drama, Shinsekai Yori for the coming of age-ness and ef: A Tale Of Memories for you to go on a feel trip. Cheers.