Convenience Store Boy Friends Review

convenienceStory:
Two friends fall in love with two female classmates. Their stories will span an entire year.

Violence:
Pretty much nonexistent here. Not even nose bleeds. There is a character death off screen, but nothing scary is shown.

Language:
Another tame sector. Outside of sh-t and the occasional d-mn, nothing to report here.

Nudity:
Yet again, tame stuff. Nothing worse than bare man chests for swimming are seen. No fanservice at all, really. And I won’t lie, it was nice.

Theology/mythology:
Outside of one character making good luck charms for her classmates, nothing to put here.

Personal impression:
By all rights I could have marked this as an all ages show, but I’m erring on the side of caution due to the serious content, which isn’t kid centered stuff. And, yes, that does mean that this title drags a bit in places. The combination of serious tonality with a lack of any firm plot means we get a decent amount of aimlessness, at least at first we do. However, I found this show to be surprisingly grounded for a drama. The relationships actually make sense a decent amount of the time. So aside from a “plot twist” at the end, everything that happens is completely within the realm of possibility. In turn this made the emotional pull a bit stronger for me. I prefer logic to the over-the-top grandeur some shows are so addicted to these days.
All that said, overall this is still a pretty bland show. It has some decent ideas, but applied them in such a laidback manner that little gets done overall and some plot points just straight up get forgotten in the mix.
The animation reflects the tone well, decent enough at times but lacking in consistent quality, especially at the end where production takes a rather sharp drop (still backgrounds in place of moving animation, for example). The music is also all over the map, going from rather nice soft piano and violin to strange arcade-like music you’d find in Harvest Moon (I’d swear that was the “going into town in spring” theme).
Overall, this isn’t a bad show. But it was definitely rushed and likely a fuller title meant to waste time between higher grade shows rather than actually contribute anything new to the genre.

Personal rating: 10+

Episodes: 12
Languages: sub
Official rating: PG
Genre: Romance, drama
Production: Studio Pierrot
Company: Dentsu Tech/BS TBS
Official streaming: crunchyroll

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Kiss Him, Not Me Review

kiss-him-not-meStory:
Kae Serinuma loves boy love! And by “love” we mean she’s “obsessed.” So when she manages to attract the attention of four very handsome young classmates, she can’t help but ship them together, much to the young men’s distress.

Violence:
Besides slap stick, comedy nose bleeds and a few flashes to the shows Serinuma likes, not too bad. This said, one episode contains some violent history on a warlord with makes the blood more serious as it’s not for comedy purposes. These flashes are brief however.

Language:
Not much here besides some sh-ts and d-mns.

Nudity:
While there’s more fanservice of males than females in this show, it’s still surprisingly tame. Heck, Yuri on Ice had more shirtless scenes and suggestive camera angles than this one. So besides some suggestive talk between anime fans on their ships, not much here.

Theology/mythology:
Remember my mention of Japanese history up top? Well, that episode contains a strange arc where the characters supposedly battle a ghost. In the end it’s heavily implied they were all accidentally high off bad mushrooms (I’m not even kidding), so theoretically it never happened. Still, there’s a decent amount of temples and such in this show so if anything like that bugs you, be warned.

Personal impression:
This title was hilarious. While it still had more than its fair share of cliches, it also had a rather unique approach to drama as the heroine in question was nearly too otaku to function. A fact the male leads not only had to come to terms with, but accept. They also had to deal with the concept of loving Serinuma regardless of what weight she was.
Oh, I didn’t mention that earlier. The series actually starts out with our lead being overweight and not really seen as a romantic option by anyone (at first). She suddenly loses weight after her favorite character in a show dies and she goes into mourning. I was afraid at first that the issue of the male leads loving her simply for her body wouldn’t be addressed. Thankfully, I was wrong and the series actually took that one on. While the result was still rough around the edges, I appreciate how this show made it clear that Serinuma was lovable and desired, regardless of what her body looked like.
As for art and music, this show had nothing new to offer. And the ending wasn’t new either. If you hate shows that pretty much end where they began, this title isn’t for you. I’m just going to warn you now that this series follows one of the biggest shojou tropes ever: keeping the reverse harem intact at all costs. Interestingly enough, this didn’t put me off the show. Considering our lead’s personality, it was oddly fitting. Even so, it’s worth noting for those out there who want more heavy duty character progression in their anime.

Personal rating: Young adult

Episodes: 12
Languages: Sub
Official rating: TV14
Genres: Romance, comedy
Production: Brain’s Base
Company: TBS
Official streaming: Crunchyroll

Haven’t You Heard? I’m Sakamoto Review

SakamotoStory:
Sakamoto is exceptional high school student. Very exceptional.

Violence:
Once or twice some characters get beat up and there are bloody noses and cuts and whatnot. While it’s not frequent, the way it’s done can be a bit violent as it is not often done for comedy, interestingly enough.

Language:
Some sh-ts and d-mns and b-words. Nothing too excessive. Typical PG14 stuff.

Nudity:
Aside from some bare chests (males only), nothing constant to note here. That said, there is one episode where Sakamoto is recruited to get a hold of porn for some friends. Nothing is shown. Also, there is a mother of one of the side characters who is very… attracted -no obsessed- with Sakamoto. It’s a very uncomfortable element so be warned on that one.

Theology/mythology:
Besides shrines seen now and then, there is an entire scene where some girls play a “summoning” game. Nothing really happens, but it’s there.

Personal impression:
Some comedies just don’t hit the funny-bone quite right. This is one of them. At first I wasn’t sure why I wasn’t laughing at this. Ever. Then I watched a few re-runs of some of my favorite comedy anime titles with a friend and it struck me. This show has no straight-man characters. None. Every extreme, over-the-top scene passes by with no comment as to the ridiculousness of the event. And while this occasionally happens in some other comedies, there are usually some moments when someone, somewhere, reacts more reasonably. A counter-point, you might say, to the zaniness of the jokes. But this show didn’t have that and it made a huge difference. Perhaps the creators thought the audience could be the straight-man? If so, I don’t think it worked. All the jokes, with punchlines waiting to hit, just…. die in midair.
Overall this was another title that I felt really underperformed this past streaming season. It was clearly a parody, yet action shows like FMA have more comedy than this.
The art was decent and the music was actually rather catchy (kinda jazzy, a pretty good choice for this sort of show). But the characters and story were dull and the jokes, which should be funny, just never landed. If you hate straight-man characters in your comedy, this is for you. But don’t underestimate the power they have. Because without them, crazy can be rather… dull.

Personal rating: Young adult

Episodes: 12
Languages: sub
Official rating: TV14
Genre: Comedy, slice of life
Company: TBS
Official streaming: Crunchyroll