The winter 2015/16 season has officially began on Anime Corps and it’s time I join in with my first review of the new season! Sit back, relax, grab some candy and get ready for Dagashi Kashi!
Here’s my opening review!
So I said in the winter preview post that this show gave me Non Non Biyori vibes as it’s set in the countryside and focuses on a candy store, well those vibes were every present in ep 1 (at least to me) as it was yet another trip back into the relaxing summer feeling that makes Non Non Biyori so enjoyable. Dagashi Kashi is by far no Non Non Biyori in any way though, so don’t go into it thinking you’ll get that exact same experience. You won’t. What you will get though is a charming and quirky show with equally charming and quirky characters who work and live in a small town in the Japanese countryside set during the blazing summer days. Still not enough of a description? Let’s continue then.
Right off the bat it’s a simple and easy story to pick up in the opening ep, anyone will be able to watch it and get right into it. As for what that story is, well we follow Shikada (Coconuts) Kokonotsu who is an aspiring manga artist, yet he just can’t quite seem to get to the level he wants to be at. Kokonotsu’s father, Shikada You, has other plans for him, namely taking over the family business of the candy shop.
To throw this conflict of interest for a loop though, we have our leading lady and current best girl of the anime Hotaru Shidare (voiced by the talented, and personal favorite of mine, Ayana Taketatsu) arrive on the scene with an interesting proposition for Kokonotsu’s father. It’s worth noting that Hotaru bears a close resemblance to a certain girl Kokonotsu has been trying to draw for his manga, so he’s having a moment of awe as the girl of his dreams is standing before him now.
Hotaru comes with an invitation for Kokonotsu’s father, that being to work for her father at the Shidare candy company. It’s quite the offer, being that the Shidare company is a huge company and very well-known across the country, so an offer like this is pretty special. You however refuses this offer on the condition that if Kokonotsu takes over the business and makes it successful, then and only then will he work for Shidare. The stage is set now for this countryside candy store anime to begin!
So looking at this first ep I found it fun and enjoyable to watch. It’s slightly silly I will admit but far from being anything over the top or just downright annoying. I described it as “charming and quirky” above twice as those two words really stuck out for me when I first watched this ep. It’s charming as I like the atmosphere the anime has, yet at the same time it’s quirky as the characters, Hotaru especially, are a little different from what you might expect from a show like this. By far they’re nothing ground breakingly new or anything, but they’ve just got a different feel to them that for once isn’t totally cliche. Huge points for that.
Speaking of characters we’re got two other that are introduced to us in the back half of this ep, a brother-sister duo Tou and Saya Endou. It’s worth noting that Saya is voiced by another favorite seiyuu of mine, Manami Numakura. These two own and run a cafe in the small town that Kokonotsu frequents often, chatting with the two siblings. It’s clear that Saya has feelings for him yet she is a bit tsundere when the topic is brought up. So as far as things go Saya and Tou are two more fun characters in this show that we’ll be seeing a lot more of in the coming eps.
Another point I liked the second half of this ep is when Saya and Hotaru meet in a rather strange way, that being Hotaru covered in mud after having crashed her bike into a rice paddock. A shower scene follows shortly after their meeting and instead of the MC walking in on a naked Hotaru, it’s Tou who has the privileged of seeing this girl naked, or at least until his sister nearly kills him. Again Dagashi Kashi is different in that Hotaru isn’t your typical girl who flips out at the MC when he sees her naked, rather she still goes to introduce herself to the nearly dead Tou, with absolutely no regard for being completely naked the whole time.
While it may come across as silly or just some random humor thrown into this anime, I really like how it feels different than every other show before it. Of course it’s rare to find an anime that can do something completely new and unheard of, but after ep 1 of Dagashi Kashi it’s got me thinking that maybe this anime won’t be sticking to the cut and paste guidelines of the usual genre but try to make its own path through this season. I certainly hope so as if that indeed is the case then I can see myself loving this show a hell of a lot more going forward.
Looking back at it all Dagashi Kashi a did a good job of introducing us to the characters and setting up the plot for the future eps in this premier. It was fun and enjoyable to watch, it wasn’t in your face with the jokes nor forcing fan service down your throat, the characters are equally entertaining and likable, the art and music are solid and fitting to the show, and overall I just like the feel of it all. So far it’s one of my top three favorites of this season, along with Phantom World and Boku dake ga Inai Machi, but as with everything else this season it’s still in the ep 3 trial period. Looking at how much I enjoyed this opening ep though it’s safe to say that this will be sticking around for the season.
So that about sums up my views on this premier ep. A fun, laid back, and humorious anime I think Dagashi Kashi is worth checking out if you’re looking for something that’s easy to watch with a touch of comedy in it. Like I said, it’s no Non Non Biyori at all, but if that was one you liked than Dagashi Kashi might appeal to you with its similar setting and countryside feel.
That’s gonna wrap up this opening review, a bit longer as I wanted to give a summary of the story, so following reviews will most likely be a bit shorter. Before I leave though I’d like to ask you what your thoughts were of this one, let me know in the comments below!
Okay then I’ll be on my way now, thanks for reading and I’ll cya later!
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