Urara Meirochou – 01
OP: 「夢路らびりんす」 (Yumeji Labyrinth) by らびりんず (Labyrinth, feat. Harada Sayaka, Hondo Kaede, Kubo Yurika, Yoshimura Haruka)
「少女と占い、時々おなか」 (Shoujo to Uranai, Tokidoki Onaka)
“The Fortune-Teller Girl Sometimes Shows Her Stomach”
It’s all about the characters.
It’s an interesting contrast, blogging this right after Seiren. Where Seiren was hobbled by insufficient personality in its main character, Urara Meirochou has nothing but personality in every one of its characters. That’s the strength of slice-of-life—by limiting its use of plot, it only has character to stand on. That’s why the slice-of-life stories that make it to television invariably have clearly defined, vibrant characters. Without that, it would be nothing.
Take our white-haired wild girl, Chiya (Harada Sayaka). What does she want? She wants to find her mom. DONE. There’s no ambiguity there. Her character is extremely well-defined, from her clothing and mannerisms down to every action she takes. This too is the case with the other girls—Tatsumi Kon (Hondo Kaede) is serious and studious, Yukimi Koume (Kubo Yurika) likes Western things, and Natsume Nono (Yoshimura Haruka) is shy. The characters aren’t terribly complex, but we know absolutely who they are. I have to admire the craft.
And yet, clearly conveying the characters doesn’t matter if they’re not interesting, and on that, subjectivity is the rule. This is a cute-girls-doing-cute-things anime, and those cute things are fortune telling. If that’s not your bag, this series probably won’t convince you otherwise. It’s firmly rooted within its genre conventions, and definitely on the fluffier side. I like that kind of thing myself, personally, so I’ll probably use this as my winding-down-after-a-long-day anime, and will be grateful for it. To me, the characters are fine, and I like how Chiya instantly ingratiates herself with everyone. That girl has some serious charisma. Hopefully she never goes into politics. (Or maybe that’d be good?)
Basically, this seems like a serviceable cute-girls-doing-cute-things slice-of-life show, with a small chance of something deeper with Chiya’s search for her mother and/or the “trouble” premonition from this episode. But probably not. I’m thinking it’ll be along the lines of GochiUsa, and that’s fine with me. Whether that’s fine with you is up to, naturally, you.
- It’s not called divination when you use mushrooms, Chiya. It’s called a trip. Those are psychedelics, you mountain hippie you.
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ED: 「go to Romance>>>>>」 by Luce Twinkle Wink☆