Today, we talk about Dagashi Kashi. The first season of course, not the second. Now, a quick disclaimer, I enjoyed this Anime despite its flaws. Anything that kills time and fills a void is something I personally enjoy. Now for starters, there are some ‘issues’ this Anime has (which will be discussed later), according to MyAnimeList, it has an average score of 6.70. So right off the bat if we’re basing everything off numbers, this Anime isn’t all that great by any standard. Dagashi Kashi’s genres are Comedy, Shounen, Slice of Life. Also, here’s the Anime synopsis just to give a little bit of background!
Out in the countryside stands a sweet shop run by the Shikada family for nine generations: Shikada Dagashi, a small business selling traditional Japanese candy. However, despite his father’s pleas, Kokonotsu Shikada, an aspiring manga artist, adamantly refuses to inherit the family business.
However, this may start to change with the arrival of the eccentric Hotaru Shidare. Hotaru is in search of Kokonotsu’s father, with the goal of bringing him back to work for her family’s company, Shidare Corporation, a world famous sweets manufacturer. Although the senior Shikada initially refuses, he states that he will change his mind on one condition: if Hotaru can convince Kokonotsu to take over the family shop. And so begins Hotaru’s mission to enlighten the boy on the true joy of delicious and nostalgic dagashi!
So what do we have for the story? Well, to be honest with you, there isn’t one. Now there is a very big set back to this, that major set back is that everything that happens during the Anime is completely random and has little to no context surrounding it. All interactions between Hotaru Shidare and Kokonotsu Shikada (the main characters) all happen within this central place, this candy shop that Kokonotsu’s dad owns. I for one really liked the randomness of each episode. Not knowing what would happen next, or why things played out the way they did; to me, played a big role in me enjoying this Anime.
However, if we’re going to analyze this Anime, taking away my own enjoyment. This Anime presents very little objectively. The “story” as previously mentioned is barely there. It doesn’t do well to provide the viewer with a ‘path’ as to where the Anime is going, or what the motives of the characters are. I don’t think it presented a conflict or gave its characters a purpose for being there. It all sort of felt like “Hey, we’re here… Just call if you need me”. There isn’t enough to turn into some kind of story, it doesn’t do well at pulling the viewer in and making them want more.
There are some really good aspects of this Anime despite the lack thereof story, that being the OP and ED and the unique art style.
When it comes to their OP and ED I thought they were both fun to listen to and overall fit the general vibe of the Anime. “Checkmate!?” by MICHI was probably one of my favourite songs of 2016. It has a great flow, it’s very upbeat and most importantly very catchy. Accompanied by its complimentary piece “Hey! Calorie Queen (Hey! カロリーQueen)” by Ayana Taketatsu, which is faster paced it does well to cap off each random episode on an upbeat and happy note.
Last but not least, we have the art style. When compared to other Anime, it may seem as though it’s average or maybe even slightly below average. But to me, I thought it made the Anime unique and very interesting to look at. I especially loved how the characters were designed. I loved everything from how they were outlined, how the shading looked on them and most importantly I loved how the various facial expressions were done. The character design I liked most was that of Hotaru Shidare. I loved the way her character looked and how she walked. She was that energy, that spark the Anime needed to be somewhat entertaining. My favourite thing about her is how her eyes were drawn, it is something that I’ve never seen before; they really stand out and scream “HEY. I AM THE MAIN CHARACTER”.
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