OP: 「トマレのススメ」 (Tomare no Susume) by 駒形友梨 (Komagata Yuri)
「二人の青春」 (Futari no Seishun)
I like trains. This is convenient for me as an anime blogger because Japan also likes trains. I don’t hold a candle to their dedicated hobbyists, train spotters who will follow new models around and buy tickets without destinations just for the sake of the train trip. Even outside of the maniacs, trains are a constant of life for those living in metropolitan Japan. The public transport system in large cities are very developed, and in the heart of Tokyo you can go almost anywhere by mass transit. For those on foot, rail crossings are common, so perhaps it’s not surprising to have an anime about people waiting around for trains to pass. They’re already easy symbolism for shows set in urban Japan, so it’s not too much of a stretch to create a slice-of-life around the idea.
At first, I wasn’t sure what to make of Fumikiri Jikan. I went into it with the vain hope that it would be absurdist theatre on the level of Waiting for Godot, where a pair of high school girls talk about seizing the moment yet spend all their time waiting for a train that never comes. Then I thought it’d just be self-contained Lucky Star-esque skits that combine slice-of-life with observational humour. But actually, Fumikiri Jikan is not so different from any other anime, just condensed. Yes, it’s a short. Yes, there’s only one set. Yes, it’s only three minutes. But in those three minutes Fumikiri Jikan more or less canvasses a complete arc of a typical romance. Establish characters: loud senpai, reserved kouhai => Build chemistry => Hint interest => Surprise confession => Much blushing => Kouhai turns tables on senpai. And scene. Isn’t that an anime in a nutshell?
I have no idea if Fumikiri Jikan‘s future sketches will be anything like this one, but the three minutes we got in this pilot made for an oddly satisfying experience. And that’s how shorts should be, no? If you don’t have time for a regular anime watching schedule, then maybe the compressed version is for you. Sure, it’s just a bite, but there may be enough flavour there to sate your appetite.