I love it when a new anime starts and within moments of it beginning you get the feeling that you’ll love it. I got that feeling the moment Saekano started, and I’m pretty sure it’ll carry through till the end of this one.
Here’s my review!
Maybe I should start at the beginning here. I’m sure you might have thought “oh Nick, you put ‘Ep 0’ in the title when you meant ‘Ep 1′”; well I’ll correct you on that one. This week’s Saekano ep is ep 0 as it’s a prologue to the actual anime that starts on the 16th (that’s next Friday, by the way). So this is whetting our appetites for the real deal that’ll follow shortly. Also, as this anime has a rather long title, I’ll be referring to it from now on with the shortened version of the title, Saekano. That also happens to be the official hashtag for it on Twitter, so be sure to use it if you plan on tweeting about it.
Okay let’s get down to business. Saekano opens up in a lovely fashion, showing us a group of girls at the hot springs. And from there this scene only gets better. Keep in mind this isn’t an R+ anime (at least as far as I know) so don’t expect some full on nudity. But nevertheless this is some glorious stuff to watch here. So aside from these girls at the hot springs, they’re actually talking about something, maybe you were like me and were scrambling to read the subs as we get panning shots of their naked bodies. Man, A-1 isn’t letting me down so far. Anyways, these girls are having a discussion about anime and their likes and dislikes about it. Nothing really too important so you honestly don’t have to pay that much attention to it. Just look at the cute girls, that’s the important part.
We get the OP after this scene finishes, one that is sung by Luna Haruna. While you might not remember her name, I’m sure you’ll remember her voice as she sung the ED2 for season 1 of Sword Art Online and ED1 for Sword Art Online II; those songs respectively being Overfly and Startear. As I greatly enjoyed both those songs, I’m glad to her Haruna’s voice once again as she’s singing another great song. I look forward to hearing the full version when it lands sometime in the near future.
Like I mentioned in the opening paragraph, this ep of Saekano is more of an OVA that most likely takes place farther another in the story. It’s pretty easy to arrive at this conclusion because of the fact it’s mentioned 6 months have passed since they all first formed their group. What exactly is this group of theirs and what are they trying to accomplish? We also waste no time in finding that out from a monologue from our harem MC voiced by none other than Yoshitsugu Matsuoka. This name must ring a bell, but if not then I’ll remind you he voiced Kirito from Sword Art Online but most notably Arata from last season’s harem anime Trinity Seven. So yes he’s back in another harem role. At least he does a good job at them, despite I’d like to see him in other roles too.
Yoshitsugu Matsuoka voices Aki Tomoya, who is the spokesman of this doujin game making club. Today we find them on a train heading somewhere, that somewhere being a nice trip into the mountains to scout locations for their game. Ah, a work related vacation. We also get intros on the lovely girls that are also part of this doujin game making club. We’ve got best girl Utaha Kasumigaoka who is the scenario writer of their game as well as a light novel author, next up we have childhood friend of Aki’s and illustrator of the group Eriri Spencer Sawamura, following her is Michiru Hyoudou, she’s in charge of the music for the game, and it’s mentioned she’s Aki’s cousin too. Lastly, while not officially introduced, as have Megumi Katou who is the model of the main character of this game they’re making.
The group goes into the woods to get some get some more sketches and do some scenario planning, but we end up having some more fan service moments along the way. Utaha playing out her latest idea for a passionate moment for the game with Aki, while Michiru leads Aki aside after that to show him a nice lake she’s found and talk about some new music ideas she’s getting. They also end up in close proximity of each other, both quite wet from jumping in the lake as well. Just a side note, if Michiru really is his cousin, then they’ve got a very… close relationship it seems. Some kinda wincest maybe? Does a cousin count?
The back half of this ep is in the hotel where they’re staying. I’m guessing this is where we start off with the hot spring scene so we don’t see it again, rather we pick it up after as they gang is playing ping-pong. Very sexy ping-pong I must add. Utaha showing off her… not so amazing ping-pong skills, but we do some more tantalizing shots of her body. While we probably won’t see it to this caliber when Saekano officially starts, I sure hope they do give us our fair share of delicious eye candy.
The fun continues into the night as the girls, minus Megumi, get a little drunk off what I initially thought were alcohol filled chocolates, but on a closer inspection they seem to be too big to be chocolates. I’m left with the assumption that they must be small shots of some sort of alcoholic drink. I noticed on the side of the box it says ‘Antone Beer’, but it’s never actually said what they are. The most info we get on them is that their a souvenir from Eriri’s father back in England. Anyways sorry to bother you with details like that, but I’ll pick up on small things from time to time. The tl;dr of this is Aki gets tied up and dragged into their room for some bonus fun.
Their fun ends shortly after 3AM and we see Megumi and Aki enjoying a nice walk outside. Both chat about their game, but the conversation drifts to why Megumi is so ordinary. Honestly out of all the girls she’s the one I nearly forgot about at times. She’s so plain and normal that it’s easy to breeze right past and not even notice her at all. Aki gives her some pointers on how to act the part of the main heroine, something Megumi questions greatly, annoying Aki in the process. We end with both Aki and Megumi hoping their game will be completed in time for a winter convention, but to do that it’ll be lots of hard work still.
As far as prologues go this one did a nice job of setting us up for next week’s premier ep. We’ve met the characters, gotten insight on the story, the best girl has been chosen, and we get to see them naked as well. Hey, that sounds like a pretty good 22 minutes right there.
While we don’t get a preview for next week’s premier ep, I’m sure we can expect it to be the initial meetings of everyone and how their group came to be. With my appetite whetted from this prologue, I’m fully ready for this one to start now as A-1 Pictures looks like they’ll deliver once again.
Up next we’ll blaze it back in Absolute Duo ep 2, something which I hope is better than ep 1. So really quickly here as for a schedule: I’ll probably be sticking with the HS release of Saekano, so expect late Friday or Saturday afternoon postings for the reviews. I’ll see how fast Chihiro releases Absolute Duo ep 2 and that should give me a better idea of when I expect to have those reviews out. Also, Tsuyuki is working on his review of Tsukimonogatari, so expect that out soon; Andrew will have the Shirobako ep 13 review out withing the next few days, and hopefully Chris will have his ep 1 review of Cinderella Girls out at some point too. Deven of course will be reviewing Koufuku Graffiti when it’s out at some point, as well as a few other anime too.
That’s it for me, I’m finished here so I’ll leave you with a brand new kazenokaze pic. Enjoy!
I’ll cya next time!
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