「飛んでます、飛んでますよっ!」 (Tondemasu, Tondemasu Yo!)
“I’m Flying! I’m Actually Flying!”
It’s been a long long time since I last blogged anything that was more chill and relaxed; not to mention a romcom harem series with some ecchi. Once in a while you need a break from all the psychological thrillers and dramas and Ao no Kanata no Four Rhythm is that perfect fit. Don’t get me wrong, the show isn’t mindless with over-the-top cute girls. I actually think it has a good balance between klutzy newcomer and ”Oh, that’s kinda cool!” elements.
Ao no Kanata no Four Rhythm is an anime adaptation based on a visual novel of the same name and it starts with a new transfer student by the name of Kurashina Asuka (Fukuen Misato) bumping into our male lead, Hinata Masaya (Osaka Ryota). Tobisawa Misaki (Asakura Azumi) bumps into Masaya on the way to school and offers to fly Asuka to school. Fly! Yes! They can fly with awesome shoes in this anime! Asuka is so in-love with the idea of flying that she asks Misaki and Masaya to coach her after school. The next day, Asuka (and company) spot Satouin Reiko (Taneda Risa) laughing at Aoyagi Shion (Kondou Takayuki) after defeating him in a game known as “Flying Circus”. Due to a misunderstanding, Asuka jumps at the opportunity to challenge Reiko without knowing what she’s getting herself into. “Flying Circus” is essential a sport played over the water flying between “posts” elevated in the sky. You gain points by either touching two posts in a row or touching the opponents’ back. Asuka struggles initially and Reiko (to no one’s surprise) gains 9 points easily. In the last stretch of the game though, Asuka manages to come back and touch Reiko’s back with her own willpower and skills. This marks the start of her career as a Flying Circus player!
So a little unconventional but also very true to the visual-novel-esque appeal, Ao no Kanata no Four Rhythm is a nice school-life romcom after a tiresome weekend. There’s not even much romance or comedy in it so far, it’s more about cute girls flying and I mean, who hasn’t dreamt of flying right? If I had a super power, it’s my childhood dream to fly (and telekinesis!). Unfortunately like a lot of visual novels, there’s normally only one or two quirks about the series and that dies quickly after a few episodes. I hope the fact that there’s an actual “sport” made around the Flying Circus means that the series will be more centered around that and less around cute girls doing cute things. The school-life and slice-of-life moments will add more value if it wasn’t all I saw. Not to mention that it would make the characters more developed. So far it looks like Asuka is the “canon” choice for Masaya, but if you ask me… the lack of focus on Masaya has led to a larger focus on the girls as individuals. Masaya seems like your typical male lead with a bit of bite, but not enough to really stand out. Asuka has stolen the spotlight and with that, it becomes less romance focused and more about her flying.
Overall the story has me enticed and like I said, it’s a nice break after a weekend of drama and intense concentration on so many other shows. The show doesn’t scream top tier for me, but it’s been a while since I’ve been interested in a harem romcom at all so maybe this will reignite that passion for me. That animation is cute; I love the overexaggeration of excitement and fear (which I haven’t seen recently) and the watercolors used in the backgrounds and prologue. It reminds me a lot of Special A (also done by Gonzo) in style and flare, but not in plot. I’d recommend you give this a shot if you’re looking for an above average harem this season. The romance will envitably come into play but in the meantime, we have shots of girls in their underwear, girls flying around playing games and how does one not notice that they’re wearing short skirts if you’re looking up? o_o
Bottom Line – @RCCherrie: Man… I forgot how fun it is to watch a romcom harem. This awakens my inner childhood dream of flying. Every once in a while, it doesn’t hurt to watch something more cheerful and easygoing. #あおかなアニメ #AonKana
Full-length images: Oh! I haven’t made one of these in a long time.
OP: 「Contrail〜軌跡〜」 (Contrail ~Kiseki~) by 川田まみ (Kawada Mami)
Masaya is the best girl.
Did I say Masaya, I mean Misaki.
Any series that has Yoshika Miyafuji (from Strike Witches) as the main character is off to a good start.
For those who thought this will be harem anime, it won’t. It will most likely focus on the Flying Circus sport (with a bit romance character development).
This gives me a walkure romanze vibe.
As I had suspected with the cast announcements (where he was listed so far down I didn’t even realize who he was), Masaya has been demoted from his role as the protagonist in favor of focusing on the girls (poster girl Asuka in particular). Not that that’s necessarily a bad thing, but it’s kind of weird that the guy who was the main character isn’t even listed in the credit’s top bracket with the heroines. Heck, the official site just lists him with under “Other Characters.” It kind of makes you wonder what kind of role he’s supposed to have in the anime.
Ignoring my reactions to this strange occurrence, this definitely looks like a fun way to end the week with. The pure cheerfulness of it all just takes all your cares away. Still, I look forward to seeing the direction the show takes from here.
P.S. Misaki just barely beats out Asuka as my favorite character.
Masaya has definitely been portrayed as “side” character involved with the MC than the other way around. It’s not that he’s boring or anything, but he really hasn’t shown us anything yet other than helping Asuka. I hope they put more on an emphasis on him in the future; otherwise, it will really be a “romance” series lacking romance.
better than a hoverboard
I was a tad bit disappointed with the premiere episode. It wasn’t bad persay, but it just felt very standard romcom ish. You have mysterious transfer student, fated encounter with the main romantic interest guy, guys and girls overreacting and screaming over seeing panties, and typical ojou-sama like character who thinks she’s above others. The sudden match with the flying circus sport felt rushed at the end, like they needed to somehow fit that in the first episode to show the main girl’s potential at flying. I assume the flying circus will be the main focus, which is actually fine since it’s a good way to explore the flying aspect of the show more.
Wasn’t terrible though, just very standard fluff, but with a pretty interesting premise that suffers from very standard tropes. I do like how the main girl is pretty enthusiastic and overly cheerful, a bit strange yet charming at the same time, paints a more colorful atmosphere.
Ah… So I thought this was a harem until I double check the Genre – sci-fi, romance, sports.
Sign me up. Wonder who will end up with Masaya. (No I’m not buying the obvious pink hair airhead)
I’m really hoping this leans more sci-fi/drama/sports than romance. I think the VN is designed that way so hopefully the anime does a faithful adaptation.
Asuka’s adorable. Can I keep her?
My freaking Lord, that scatterbrained chick totally killed this show to me. Seriously, she’s like screeching nails on chalkboard; speaks too much, too loud, and in erratically obnoxious manner. Her tendency to spout random nonsense like it’s supposed to be funny also annoyed the hell out of me. 15 minutes into the episode and she already exhausted me so bad i felt like going back to sleep.
While maybe not that far, I do agree that Asuka’s airheadedness was a little much. It felt like the only reason she was like that was as an excuse to have another character explain the Grav-shoes and Flying Circus (rather than simply having a voice-over while showing the details and such) and now making her out to be an idiot savant with regards to both with the way she spent the entire Flying Circus match barely able to even move and literally having circles flown around her (and not doing that much better even with Masaya directly coaching her in real time), but then suddenly, with just one little memory of a song she would sing as a child, she suddenly performs what I assume was, based on other characters’ reactions, an advanced maneuver in order to pull out a win at the last second.
I only hope that doesn’t become a pattern – Asuka not doing much and nearly losing before having a convenient memory flashback and somehow wins like she’s actually an all-star player.
Walküre Romanze vibes, but this time with Flying shoes instead of Horses and female Knights
This flew under my radar, I was completely unaware the VN wass by the same company as Koichoco and Imaimo, the character design and unique setting should have made it obvious.
Got interested after reading Cherries review and starqo’s comment. I must say, it is a light and fun episode. Kinda reminds me of Angelic Layer.
the idea of “flying sports” is kinda odd to me, not to mention the naming… flying circus? meh…
but strangely enough this anime is quite appealing to me. i dont know why so i will have to wait for episode 2 to judge it well.
After writing this post, I thought it reminded me a lot of Quidditch (Harry Potter reference… in case you didn’t know)! They’re pretty much playing a sport in the air with poles on the ends too. So if you wanted another comparison, there’s that.
The VN was actually a fairly straight sports story, complete with training montages, in-depth analysis of game strategy and tactics, and washed up fogies giving life lessons to their young counterparts (since this is still anime, said fogies are somewhere between 17 and 25). Don’t know if they’re going the same route with the anime, though.
I say this episode as a good one! These series will be as ejoyable as it’s predecessor – Koi to Senkyo to Chocolate!
This is like Air Gear meets random cutesy slice of life anime, minus the ecchi.
I loved the episode. Very interested in the flying circus
This Anime has perhaps some Otome as target. Because i get much Walküre Romanze vibes, also the Action is on Otome level.
btw, with this Anti-Gravs shoes… and Girls still continue to wears skirts.. They surly have “balls” for that… 🙂
As soon as I saw the anti-grav shoes and the “Flying Circus” sport, I immediately thought of ‘Air Gear’.