First Impression – Tsuki ga Kirei

Sponsored by LINE…?

Well, I wanted slice of life, and I certainly got it.

At first glance, this anime is really pretty simple. Two middle school children awkwardly figure out love and have all of those awkward moments where they can barely talk to each other because they’re not entirely sure how to yet. However, this anime is great because of its simplicity, since it’s able to convey a lot through character interactions even with the minimal plot. The characters manage to have ups and downs that are nowhere near as dramatic as other anime would have, but it’s still extremely interesting to watch.

Maybe one day they’ll even be able to sit together without the need for that 2 feet of space between them

The slower story really allows many different sides of the main characters to show through as well. Akane may be shy and anxious, but you can really see how she acts differently around her family or close friends. The same goes with Kotarou, since he’s unexpectedly active in his community and at first glance, his desire to become an author isn’t really that overt. Putting the two together, it really is heartwarming to see how they began becoming friends despite their initial awkwardness. Getting past that now, it’s nice watching them slowly grow closer and affect each other’s outlooks on life, like Akane influencing Kotarou to show his novels to people. There are a lot of misunderstandings between the two of them now, but that too seems like an unavoidable part of youth. Akane’s jealousy is kind of cute, and when it comes down to it, at least she admitted her interest in wanting to talk to Kotarou more.

The side characters also add a lot to the anime. The side stories of Setsuko and her boyfriend are pretty funny, and watching Roman go after the teacher is also amusing. It’s nice that while the story mainly focuses on the main couple, the other characters also add life to the background and show how there’s way more to the school than just Akane and Kotarou. Speaking of backgrounds, they certainly are putting a lot of effort into them. While the character designs are simple (and the background characters are often CG), the actual scenery is always really detailed and interesting to watch on it’s own.

At first I was amazed at how generic the anime started out to be. There’s not a whole lot of special aspects to the setting or the characters. However, that’s probably where the charm of the show lies. Now I’m just amazed at how well this anime conveys the general awkwardness of being a middle school student. The pacing is really slow and you could argue that not a lot happens in an episode, but the characters and the interactions they have are just really believable and often adorable. I want to cheer on Kotarou while he tries his hardest to talk to Akane, and there’s some part of me that cringes (fondly, somehow) whenever he gets excited and starts boxing with the light’s string in his room. I can also really relate to all of those scenes with the characters just awkwardly staring at each other from afar without really speaking to each other. The kids are all pretty cute, and watching them grow seems like it will be really entertaining. …I’m just a little concerned with Kotarou’s interest in Dazai, if only because shinjuu the one thing I picture when thinking about Dazai is this guy.


University student and the one at Metanorn who's known for wearing glasses. Likes blood, insanity and plot twists, but also plays otome games and adores cute romance anime. It balances out... somehow.
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4 Responses to “First Impression – Tsuki ga Kirei”

  1. Highway says:

    These kids are completely adorable. I like that it’s just a show about normal kids figuring out love, and that there’s no precipitating event like he saves her, or he’s a total hunk, or she’s the prettiest girl in school, or some unrealistic thing like that. Just a “hey, she’s really cute, cuter than everyone else (even though on a general scale she probably isn’t), maybe I want to talk to her, but I’m really not sure how.” If there’s anything unrealistic about this show, it’s how he didn’t launch into an explanation right away about his phone being confiscated in ep 3, instead apologizing a bunch of times. But maybe that’s a Japanese thing. Anyway, I love how this is just a normal kids learning about love story.

    I did think it weird that they were 1) going to such lengths to confiscate phones, when they’re going to have free time by themselves and 2) that the kids went to such lengths to smuggle the phones along, yet then openly used them in the hotel lobby, etc. Haven’t phones completely transitioned from a “This is a distraction” to “This is sometimes a distraction but the benefits are far greater” thing?

  2. zztop says:

    The phrase “Tsuki ga kirei, 月が綺麗” = “The moon is beautiful”, can also mean “I love you”.

    Meiji-era novelist/teacher Soseki Natsume is credited with inventing it, after seeing his student attempt to directly translate “I love you” into Japanese. (It came out as 我君ヲ愛ス = Ware kimi o ai-su.)

    Natsume felt the original was too crude and obvious, and went to make a translation he deemed more graceful and Japanese. (Conservative social mores also influenced the statement – he didn’t think Japanese needed such a direct word to convey love).

  3. skylion says:

    I’m just like, “Dude! Ask her to WcDonald’s for some fries and a fizzy drink! Don’t make it that big a deal! Just talk to her like she’s a person, not a level up bonus” Which I think she’s somewhat aware of.

    But at that age it’s a MASSIVE deal, ain’t it. So focused on getting it wrong, so anxious for the answer. But he’s a good natured sort, even takes the teasing from his friends in an even way.

    Now, let’s see this from her perspective!

  4. Highway says:

    I was thinking about this show today, and thought of one thing that I really love in thinking about it. We’re seeing Akane go through this situation where there are two people who think she’s interesting, but for her there’s only the one that really gets her all fluttery. And it’s not the track club senpai that everyone thinks would be a good match for her. And unlike other comedy or drama romance shows, it’s not making a big melodramatic thing out of there being a love triangle.

    But what I like the most is the way they’re able to portray and get across to the audience that Azumi just has this effect on her that Hira doesn’t. The shy nerdy bookish guy who isn’t hated, but is more of a non-entity until Akane starts noticing him. It’s not that I love some nerd winning out over some jock. It’s that the show is able to show us this mysterious reaction so well.

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