Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae wo Bokutachi wa Mada Shiranai (commonly known as AnoHana) starts off with a boy named Jintan who has dropped out of school, plays video games and sleep all day, do nothing productive and doesn’t have a very good reputation among the community. He finds himself reunited one of his childhood friends, Menma who had died in the past from an accident. However for some strange reason, he is the only one who can see her. Jintan learns that she needs to complete her wish, but the problem is, she doesn’t remember what that wish is. With that said, Jintan finds himself confronting his friends in order to try and discover Menma’s wish, but as he does this he finds the group slowly, but surely coming back together again.
AnoHana plot was more about repairing the severed bonds with old friends and learning how to overcome the guilt and regret from the past. This story by all means was predictable in the sense that we knew that Menma was dead, was going to play a role in bringing the friends who have went their separate ways back together again to try and help granting her wish so that she can pass on. But despite that, the plot is so memorable, and so heart warming, it takes this show to a whole new level. I found myself crying about 9/11 episodes, and let me tell you – I haven’t cried this much since Clannad.
Characters and Development: 9/10
What makes the characters of this show so special is that they are very real. Real as in down to earth, the seiyuu’s do an excellent job of conveying the emotions, to the point at times I actually come to forget these are fictional characters. The characters all had unique traits, personalities and secrets, and every single one of them had a major character development, and several high hurdles to jump. It was never the blink of an eye resolution, even after they overcame something, they continued to feel emotional about it. Speaking of emotions, every character was emotional because they were either consumed by regret, guilt and/or jealousy. In fact, Guilt and Regret played a significant part of defining the characters.
Animation Quality: 7.5/10
The animation quality did falter quite bit throughout this show. It was minor, but those who are pretty sharp about details will notice these errors. While yet this animation is not as beautiful as some of the others from this season, it still made it extremely refreshing with the style and the rich simple colors that they’ve used. As for the OP and ED, both were just beautiful done.
The OST is one of the main reasons I find myself bawling my eyes out every episode. It’s so freakign emotional, AJSKGHALSKJG – it’s just beautiful. The OP and ED, both are addicting and convey such a message that speaks volumes about this show.
Recommendation: ABSOLUTELY. As ‘simple’ as this show may sound, one of the best things about it is how well it connects with the audience. In fact if you loved Clannad, you will probably love this. Be sure to have a tissue box beside you because I found myself crying almost every episode. The characters all have very unique personalities and unexpected secrets that will keep you on your toes to see what will happen next. This is definitely by far my favorite of the Spring Season and I’m sure you will love it too!