Where one doesn’t bother, another does~
Hoshi: Usagi Drop has crossed my radar a few times when searching for manga to read, and I always thought to myself, “I’ll read this when I have more time.” The plot has always intrigued me, but for some reason I kept skipping it as I went through the bookstore. Luckily, it turned out there was an anime in the works! I’m happy to finally get a look into Usagi Drop, and see just what the buzz is about.
Hime: This is one of these shows with an irresistible sounding premise. It just has too much potential for cuteness to pass up, right?
Zabobinator: I’m gonna admit that this show didn’t particularly catch my eye. It looks like a really sweet story, bordering on sappy, and, from what I hear, the manga’s pretty awesome. However, I have my reservations but I shall watch anyways. Who know? I might end up loving this.
Kyokai: ~I’ve been hearing stuff about this for some time and I postponed reading the manga since I found out about the anime. I’ve always been a sucker for emotional story lines with different character connections and how can you not like that little one-pieced girl grasping at that tall dude’s hand?
Hoshi: Let’s stumble upon thirty year old Daikichi, who’s just woken up from an odd dream. He goes about his today, traveling to his grandfather’s house for his funeral. Upon coming through the gate, he sees a little girl, who almost immediately takes off running.
Such a contrast, yet somehow very adorable~
Daikichi enters the house, asking if the child is someone else’s. However, it turns out, despite Grandpa’s old age, that she’s his illegitimate child! He hadn’t said anything about it to the rest of the family, and her mother, his lover, took off. As the girl goes around the house quietly, the rest of the family prepares for the funeral. Occasionally the adults talk about the girl, Rin, and if it really is true about being Grandpa’s child. Daikichi however takes a lighter view of the situation and even watches over her while the rest of the family seem to ignore her.
The next day, everyone begins to make their final farewells. Daikichi goes to Rin and asks her to come over and say her goodbyes as well. But when she needs to place a white flowers on Grandpa, she suddenly shakes her head and runs off into the yard, picking bellflowers, a flower Grandpa loved. Rin places these on him instead with Daikichi giving the comment that these flowers made him happiest.
A little blue in life is not so bad
Finally comes the family meeting of who will take care of young Rin at the moment. Daikichi watches as the family makes excuses, from having to run a store to Rin not having proper manners to even being just too busy to raise her. With no one else willing to take the risk, someone suggests placing her in a facility. This suddenly gets Daikichi and he slams his cup on the table before walking over to Rin. He asks if she’d like to come home with him, and while the rest of the family is in shock, Rin runs to him, giving her answer as they then are shown waking up together at Daikichi’s house~.
Oji-san, your snores kept me awake all night! >.<
I’m digging the Wandering Son style of animation here. Water colours really give off a lovely soft snuggly feel, which is what Usagi Drop is all about. The OP however took us a little too far into that style than I appreciated. It looked like a 4 year olds scrawl. The song was pretty lame, too. The ED is 10x better. Getting in the actual episode itself…Wow, okay, um, I squee’d for pretty much the entire 20 minutes so…I don’t really know what to say. Daikichi and Rin are adorable.
I honestly wish I could more to say about this but, no…it’s just cute. It’s very reminicent of things like Wandering Son and Natsume in just how quiet and slow it is. The very scarce dialogue works to it’s advantage well since the music is what they really rely on to convey the emotions of the characters. It leads to some great subtle moments, and some comedic ones.
Overall I’ve been smitten with Usagi Drop, even if it did have a few shortcomings. It doesn’t leave much of an impression on you. In the moment I was enjoying it, but if I dropped it and never watched another episode I probably would forget all about it in a few weeks. Which is the weakness of subtle little shows like this. I will definitely be giving it the benefit of the doubt though and sticking with it for a few more episodes. I have my calming fix with Natsume this season so I wouldn’t feel a great loss if I dropped this one if it became too sugary sweet or tedious.
Wow. Usagi Drop was MUCH better than I had anticipated. In fact, this first episode made me cry. Now that’s good. Everything is just so tender and beautiful; it’s warm. Not only so, but it’s one of the sweetest and quirkiest stories ever. I mean, come on, Gramps got some chick preggers and had a child at 79? Dude’s a baller yo – I got mad respect. And Daikichi’s taking care of his own aunt! xD In all seriousness though, this show surprised me by how easily it tugged at my heartstrings.
I loved Rin. She is SUCH a sweet girl. I found it clever that she was introduced in stark contrast to the Reina (the epitome of annoying-child). She was a sight for sore eyes; we finally have a loli who is quiet, unassuming and, most importantly, realistic. Characters like Rin are precisely why I always enjoy slice of life shows over others. The characters are so much easier to empathize with and, as such, it’s much easier to become involved in the action. For example, when Rin asked if Gramps was going to ever wake up again I just started crying. That was such a tender moment and her naive question spoke volumes. She’s so innocent and pure you know? I’m very glad that Daikichi took it upon himself to raise her. He’s a straight up awesome dude in my book.
So, the art is right up my alley. Watercolor on ink is my medium of choice and it looks like that’s what we have here! Not only is it simply gorgeous, but the art captures the feel of the story perfectly. As opposed to the sharp, vibrancy of other shows this season; Usagi Drop features a soft, laid back style that serves to enhance the sweetness. This show is really beautiful and I’m glad that my previous opinion was proved wrong. I can’t to see how Daikichi and Rin fare together!
Aren’t there just too many good series airing this Summer? It was so stolid last year but look at it now, so many good shows and such a mix of genre too. Usagi Drop captured my attention from the get go. That penciled beginning and the simple motions of Daikichi waking up and getting his chores done before going to the main house were relaxing and smooth. It helps that the animation is so similar to Wandering Son. Seems like this season, studios are taking a leaf out of each other’s past works (from the current example to Brains Base for OP/ED from Shaft in case of Mawaru Penguindrum), for better quality.
From the first episode, UD established itself with a unique disposition of unsettling relations, settling well together.Rin comes off as a quiet girl who keeps to herself yet her thinking-mode is always on, keeping off other people’s spaces and trying to make things better in her own little way. Like getting on that stool to key the clock, trying to keep awake to check up on her father’s incense and not even rolling her eyes when Reina stole her glory of cat’s cradle. That’s one strong girl in my book and Dai-chan is my hero for opting to keep her just because the rest of his family were being so mean.
It’s almost hilarious that Rin is Dai’s aunt in relation yet so much younger than him. His grandfather sure was virile to say the least but this creates such an interesting premise that I can’t help but enjoy it. It’s going to be brilliant watching the little kid take care of the big kid because dude, he doesn’t even know how to make onigiri! And that’s suppose to be something very simple in Japan? Aah, Rin is just love and adorable. Of course, this is just the beginning and we still have to see how their relationship develop but I’m definitely sticking around and following this adorableness till the end.
To be honest, it’s been really hard trying to give my thoughts on this episode since it really just sets up Usagi Drop’s storyline and pretty much plays out to the summary. It was very light overall, even despite the somewhat scandalous theme. I think the watercolor beginning animation and the opening that followed really set that mood, even giving it a childish feel (especially that adorable opening animation). I didn’t care much for the OP song however; too cutesy for my taste. The ED song was a lot better (and the animation was a lot neater, in my opinion).
「High High High」by Kasarinchu (DID YOU GUYS KNOW THERE’S BEATBOXING IN THIS SONG?!)
I really enjoyed Daikichi’s reactions and jokes about his grandfather. I know that would be my reaction, to play it off in a joking manner. That’s what I liked about Daikichi a lot. As for Rin, SHE IS JUST TOO ADORABLE! I’d take her home myself! I got as frustrated as Daikichi when no one would offer to take her. I can understand that you have a business to run or another kid to take care of, but to not want to help out just because you’re embarrassed is another thing. Speaking of people that make me angry, I really wanted to smack that Reina girl. In my family, you’d get smacked for that kind of behavior, no matter how old you are! Shame on her parents, seriously. You need to put your kids in place, no matter how old they are, and teach them some respect, especially in situations like a funeral. Also, I don’t know if I’m over thinking things, but I kind of saw Reina’s hyperactive (maybe even spoiled) behavior as a contrast to Rin’s shyer, solemn behavior. She didn’t kick up a fuss for attention, but just quietly went about her way among the adults who ignored her while Reina was all over the place, making noise. I may just be biased over calmer kids, heh.
Recently, I read an interview with the scriptwriter for Usagi Drop, who tells that the producer wanted a writer who knew the joys and pains of raising children, the anime’s ambition to depict a ‘kid-like kid’, and that Rin’s voice actresses is actually a nine-year old kid. Reading that gives me a really good feeling for Usagi Drop since they’ve put some actual care to make it just right and have promise to make a compelling story even despite the normal characters. I’m definitely willing to follow this show all the way through and see what lies ahead for both Daikichi and Rin~.
Preview: Wah! There is none! But don’t fret, there will be another episode! Until next week then~!