Yuruyuri – 01
OP: 「ゆりゆららららゆるゆり大事件」 (Yuriyurararara Yuruyuri Daijiken) by 七森中☆ごらく部 (三上枝織, 大坪由佳, 津田美波, 大久保瑠美) (Nanamori Chuu Goraku-bu (Mikami Shiori, Ootsubo Yuka, Tsuda Minami, Ookubo Rumi)
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「中学デビュー！」 (Chuugaku Debyuu!)
“Middle School Debut!”
I’m never opposed to a series about cute girls doing cute things, so I’m always up for a slightly different spin on it. To that end, we have a trio of trio of middle school girls, Akaza Akari (Mikami Shiori), Toshinou Kyouko (Ootsubo Yuka), and Funami Yui (Tsuda Minami), and the unofficial “Fun Club” they run in the ex-tea ceremony clubroom. Akari is a year younger and just entering middle school, and upon doing so, she realizes Kyouko and Yui don’t do anything but laze away in their club. Before long, first-year Yoshikawa Chinatsu (Ookubo Rumi) is tricked into joining using her actual interest in tea ceremonies, completing the main foursome.
What distinguishes Yuruyuri from K-ON and A-Channel are the minor lesbian undertones care of Kyouko, who’s later supported in her endeavors by student council member Ikeda Chitose (Toyosaki Aki). Idiocy also comes into play more, as the girls won’t hesitate to make fun of Akari like we saw here, and Yui in particular won’t hesitate to smack Kyouko when she gets carried away with her rampant lesbian behavior. What isn’t too different is the level of humor itself, which isn’t quite the laugh-until-it-hurts kind, and instead the quirky and mildly amusing kind. Most of the entertainment value comes from the silly character interactions, such as Kyouko’s interest in the manga character Mirakurun (Taketatsu Ayana) and her cougar eyes set on Chinatsu because of the latter’s uncanny resemblance. Then there’s Yui as the sensible and respectable senior, yet she too will join in on the laughs at Akari’s expense. Even the seemingly innocent Chinatsu isn’t dumb enough to be preyed on, and will quickly sacrifice Akari to get away from Kyouko. (She sure learns fast.)
Despite what this premiere episode will have us believe, the comedy isn’t all about preying on Akari though. The student council has a group of four girls as well, and their president Sugiura Ayano (Fujita Saki) is always at odds with Kyouko for being surprisingly book smart even though she doesn’t put in any effort. The jostling between those two provide some quirky humor of its own, while the aforementioned Chitose takes things in the lesbian direction as well. Last but definitely not least are heated childhood rivals, Oomura Sakurako (Katou Emiri) and Furutani Himawari (Mimori Suzuko), who already sent sparks flying before being formally introduced. Compared to Yui simply keeping Kyouko in check, Sakurako and Himawari are downright cut-throat as even compete over student council work. In short, we don’t only have cute girls doing cute things, but we also have cute girls doing really stupid things. Does that work for everyone? No. Does it work for me? For the most part, yes.
Admittedly, I’m still not overly excited about Dogakobo’s latest adaptation, due to the relatively green cast that’s starring in it. However, I do see Yuruyuri as an opportunity for their careers to gain some steam, much like how K-ON did wonders for its relatively unknown cast at the time. Now we see them getting roles in just about everything, including Yuruyuri. At the moment, what this series does have going for it is the director and screen writer of Minami-ke s1 and Mitsudomoe s1/s2, Oota Masahiko and Aoshima Takashi. I always felt the first season of Minami-ke was the funniest and that Mitsudomoe was an absolute riot, so hopefully some their stylistic touches carry over.
ED: 「マイぺースでいきましょう」 (My Pace de Ikimashou) by 七森中☆ごらく部 (三上枝織, 大坪由佳, 津田美波, 大久保瑠美) (Nanamori Chuu Goraku-bu (Mikami Shiori, Ootsubo Yuka, Tsuda Minami, Ookubo Rumi)
Watch the ED!: Streaming ▼