Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso – 22 [END]

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso - The end

Burn Bright Shining Star

winter15-highwFinally to the end, it’s the first series wrapup at the end of this season for Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso. Sometimes frustrating, sometimes triumphant, but how was the overall impression of the show?

Farewell Performance

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso - The way to remember her

The way he wants to be forever

We do continue with Kousei’s performance, or rather restart it, as he reflects on all the people around him, the realization that he’s not alone at all, and all of his friends have filled his life with happiness and love. And everyone in the hall is treated to the results of this realization, as Kousei plays with more emotion and feeling and even maturity than ever before. Thankfully, they didn’t repeat what they did in the early part of the show with having the grouchy judge complain about Kousei’s lack of faithfulness to the score. Perhaps the message is that he’s gone past the basics of the score, and has made the transition to bringing out not just the feeling of the score but also himself.

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso - Lost someone else

Kousei’s goodbye

The climax of his piece brings his thoughts to Kaori, and even her presence to his stage, even though she’s having her operation. And although they have a triumphant performance, at least in Kousei’s head, at the end of the piece her image fades away, and he seems to realize that it might be the last that he ever sees of her. I was a little worried that he would not finish the piece, but this time he does, albeit in tears. The second time he’s said goodbye to someone with his playing, but this time doesn’t exorcise the insecurities he’s had about his mother’s illness and death, but instead is the farewell to his first love, someone who burned tremendously brightly for Kousei, and lit the way out of his previous darkness.

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso - No Space for Kaori

No room for Kaori?

The final half-episode of the show is given over to an epilogue of sorts, as we see after Kaori’s gone and spring is returning. And most of it is Kousei’s reading of a letter Kaori wrote to him before her surgery, a letter that lays out Kaori’s history of watching Kousei from afar, never able to get close to him (“There was no space for me [between Tsubaki and Watari]”), but being inspired by and in love with him. And finally, realizing her time was short, she decided to go for it and not leave any regrets. It smacks a little of desperation, but it’s hard to blame her for going out the way she would want to. She certainly left an impression, and the rest of the group won’t be the same for her involvement in their lives (the show was pretty clear that Watari fell pretty hard for Kaori too, but knew that she wasn’t into him like she was Kousei: “The girl will let you know”). But it certainly left the impression that while Kousei will miss Kaori, he wasn’t devastated the same way, and probably never will be again.

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso - Watari remembers

Lost in the shuffle

Series Impressions

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso - The people who love him

The other people who love Kousei

It’s kind of hard to summarize the feelings I have for this show. This may have been one of the hardest shows I’ve ever written about. Partly because of each episode’s slow pace, partly because the show was pretty straightforward in how it was going to tell the story. I think we all knew, probably about episode 8, that Kaori would not live until the end of the show. The show was thus much more about how Kousei dealt with, not really Kaori’s death, but with the thought of missing Kaori, after the terrible time he had missing his mother. I think it was good that Kousei found the strength to play in the final competition not from Kaori, but from all the others in his life, and that brought him to the place that Kaori had launched herself into just to get closer to him. And while there wasn’t really romance between Kousei and Kaori, who both loved the other but never admitted it while alive, there’s certainly that hope for the future, as it’s almost certain that Tsubaki and Kousei will end up together, at least to try.

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso - The piano

It was hard to get enough of this

I think it’s obvious that the standout part of this show was the musical performances. It’s hard to complain that there weren’t enough of them, since I think at least one-third of the episodes had a musical performance. And the big breakthrough was the excellent CG that was used for the piano. Completely natural hand movements, exceptionally detailed instruments, and well-played and recorded performances made them the star of the show. I hope that this is something that gets reused in the future, because it was definitely a big leap forward.

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso - vulnerable Tsubaki

Tsubaki’s hope that her feelings get across to Kousei

What wasn’t as good, as I said earlier, was the story. It hit the points, but it felt very stretched, with a lot of rehashing of the same things over and over. Perhaps this show couldn’t have fit into a single cour, but I think it should definitely go in the same boat as those shows that should get 18 episodes (Oh I so wish that they would do half-cour increments). If it had tightened up a little, maybe had a bit less of different characters wallowing in their own selves, it might leave a better impression.

Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso - bai-bai

Kaori says goodbye

The colors of the show are tremendous, but I can’t say I’m a huge fan of the art style. The watercolor nature of it works pretty well, but I don’t like the character faces, particularly the mouths. This is a personal issue, I guess, but it’s just not a look that I think worked particularly well. Scenery was great, and the settings of the show never failed to be beautiful and appropriate. Voice work was good throughout, as to be expected given the cast of the show, all veterans of good roles.

header-winter15-highw

So what is my lasting memory of Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso? Great musical pieces. Too much drama, and a wish that they’d had a way for Kaori to not die. While the ending wasn’t really ‘sad’, it was still not great, nor particularly ‘happy’. If you want to see great musical performances, this is the show to watch, as it definitely delivered on them. And if you want to hope against hope that the main girl isn’t going to be killed by her illness, you can definitely do that. But as we know, it’s fruitless. It’s definitely not a show for everyone, and I don’t think it will have any replay value for me. But it was certainly a nice watch.

About

Proving that you don't have to be young to love anime, I enjoy all genres and styles of shows. If it's not hurting anyone else, you should never be ashamed of what you like!
Blinklist BlogMarks Delicious Digg Diigo FaceBook Google MySpace Netvibes Newsvine Reddit StumbleUpon Twitter

28 Responses to “Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso – 22 [END]”

  1. Di Gi Kazune says:

    The brighest stars always burn the shortest.

  2. akagami says:

    My first reaction (nsfw): Show ▼

    Wrrryyyy щ(゜ロ゜щ)

    It’s been a while since I’ve been emotionally involved in a show. It still feels too raw, I can’t put my thoughts down. Maybe in a few days. Aw dammit.

    • JPNIgor says:

      I started saying “no way… no, no nononononononono”

      And when I noticed, I was screaming “NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!” (ok, not so much).

      But I know how you feel. It’s been three/four days and I still can’t quite sort what I’m feeling, because everytime I remember about it, it stings D=

      That’s why I hate bittersweet endings =.=

    • Highway says:

      I liked it, but just wasn’t able to get that emotionally involved in the show because it just took too long to get there. While parts were exciting, they were known from so far away that the impact just wasn’t there for me.

  3. Joojoobees says:

    I agree. The artwork was great, and they did a good job with the musical performances, but they seemed to be banking the emotional chain more than was necessary for the story. Admittedly there are people other than me that enjoy crying during their entertainment, so I might not have been the ideal audience for Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso.

    • Highway says:

      I’m that guy who loves to cry at shows, but this one just didn’t do that most of the time. It spent so much time setting you up for it that the size of the impact you need to get emotional tended to not be there, since you already knew what was going to happen. I admit there was a little hope that Kaori would make it through her operation, but the show seemed so intent on having her die that it was but a distant fleeting hope.

      Thinking about it, I wonder if the fact that Kousei and Kaori never recognized themselves as a couple is kind of what saves Kousei from a repeat of the kind of emotional distress after Kaori’s death. Having the person who inspired you die is different from having your partner die. Or perhaps it was more that Kaori’s whole ethos after her transformation was ‘be memorable’ that makes her memory a happy one.

  4. JPNIgor says:

    Is it plausible to say that you could feel the emotion put into the piano playing? Because, hearing the music syncing with what Kousei was thinking was the best part for me on the A-part.

    B-part was just a wrap up, to say what really happened with Kaori, and what will be from the other characters from there on. I really did want Kousei to end up with a happy ending this time but NOOOO, of course he gets the bad ending and a love that will never be fulfilled. This is the part that gets me thinking, Kousei, you’re the most unfortunate guy in the animeverse.

    But I was really surprised with his reaction overall. Very accepting, relying on people around him, not ever forgetting about him. He turned out pretty strong at the end for someone who was shrinking in the corner of a dark room one episode ago.

    I wanted to see more of Watari, though. Apparently, he was hit harder than Kousei, she was probably his first real love (?) Is he going to change after what happened to Kaori? Or is he going to stay the same upbeat womanizer? I think the first is the most likely.

    I don’t have words for the music in this show. The piano playing was awesome and most of the times, delivered everything that the show demanded. Both openings and the first ending were awesome as hell, and the acoustic version of Kirameki by wacci being played by the end was just cherry on top of it all.

    The art, yeah, the colors were awesome, and I’m a fan of the character design as well. It reflects pretty much the artstyle of the manga to the anime, though more detailed. The only thing I had a problem with were the inaccurate representation of age in characters. I’m never sure if the chibi characters in the flashbacks are supposed to be 5 or 10 years old.

    • Highway says:

      Or 13 years old. Chibi-Kousei breaking down due to his mother’s death was supposed to be 2 years ago and he’s 15 now.

      Watari’s story would be an interesting one, and one we’ve probably seen before. I don’t know if he was hit harder than Kousei, or if it’s more that he never got the same kind of reciprocation from Kaori. Usually the story is from the perspective of Kousei, but we don’t usually see the story of the popular guy who falls for someone who’s in love with someone else.

      I’ll admit that I’m not really a fan of any of the OP and ED music for this show. Of the four, the only one I ever listened to was the second ED. None of the rest struck me as interesting.

      I think that the A-part definitely was emotional, but to me it was more of a “happy as it can be under the circumstances” thing. The first part of Kousei’s piece was for the people who had enriched his life, and his recognition of that, and then the second part was for Kaori, his farewell to her. I’m actually more emotional writing this than I was watching it.

      • JPNIgor says:

        Well, the first opening was by goose house, which made the OPs for both seasons of Silver Spoon, so I really like that one, and the first ED took me a while to get hooked on, but I started to like it towards the three last episodes of the first half. The ending sequence was pretty sweet too. I coudn’t keep watching past the second ending because it obviously gave off this feeling that something would go wrong at some point, as if spoiling me.

        I feel the same. Watching wasn’t as emotional to me as thinking about it afterwards. My mind was kind of numb while watching.

        • Highway says:

          The first OP for Silver Spoon was kiss you by miwa. That song I kind of like, even though it’s totally country. The second season’s OP by goose house is also really meh for me. I just don’t care for their style at all. And that applies to Hikaru Nara for Shigatsu.

          Orange by 7!!, the ED 2 for Shigatsu, was definitely foreshadowing the ending, but I think we all knew that would happen anyway.

          • JPNIgor says:

            The first ending of Silver Spoon was by goose house, sorry.

            • JPNIgor says:

              Oh wait… Only the second ending was by goose house, what am I saying…

  5. HannoX says:

    I agree that this show was drug out for far too long. And it returned to the same themes far too often. How many times did we have to see how awful Kousei’s mother was to him during her illness and how often did we need to seem him wallowing in depression and guilt over her death? Talk about beating your audience over the head with a hammer to drive your point home.

    I think if it wasn’t for the musical performances I would have abandoned this show about halfway through the first cour.

  6. HannoX says:

    Hey, is this the show where the childhood friend gets the guy? But Tsubaki better not take Nagi for granted. Her admiration for Kousei’s piano playing might grow into something more. Better put your brand on him quick, Tsubaki!

    • Highway says:

      Or Emi. Or even Miike. There’s a whole bunch of people who want to get with Kousei.

      • JPNIgor says:

        Miike? That’s sick o_o’

        • Highway says:

          Sick? Heck no. Why is that any different from Nagi? She and Miike are the same age. If that’s what they want, then try for it.

      • HannoX says:

        I considered Emi as a possible romantic interest, but in the end I came to think her feelings towards Kousei just didn’t seem like they’d develop into a love interest. Her desire to have him “Look at me!” seemed more like a desire to have a fellow pianist whom she admires to acknowledge her playing.

  7. Foshizzel says:

    Shigatsu is a very very very beautiful looking series filled with bright colors and very dark colors whenever the drama or sadness hits, but overall the story took a bit too long for me to feel any true sadness! I mean sure some episodes near the end got to me like the final duet with both main characters <3

    RIP BEST GIRL T______T

    For those that will complain that Watari got nothing I will just say that is generally what happens to a lot of supporting characters! Like in Golden Time, Toradora Nagi no Asakura and any other series with romantic elements so yeah we probably will never know what happened to them afterwards because it's just not their story sadly.

    My only gripe besides the story dragging along was the ages of the main cast ranging from 13-15 and the fact that they are only in middle school? I'm not saying middle school settings can't have drama because some can pull it off quite well, but the romance parts of this series were a bit strange! Did anyone at that age really want or NEED a girlfriend or have such deep thoughts as Kousei? Maybe I was doing other things in my middle School years like watching DBZ on Toonami? Instead of thinking about the universe LOL...again just a minor gripe.

    7/10 <3 <3 <3

    • JPNIgor says:

      I guess someone who’s recently lost his mom would have deeper thoughts than anyone else his age, but I agree that sometimes the way these teenagers think are way too out of their age, either all these kids would have some future writing stuff or there’s something weird going on.

      And their constant poetic repetition of some sentences throughout an episode only aggravated that feeling.

    • akagami says:

      Speaking from my own experience, ages 13-15 were when boyfriends/girlfriends were a BIG deal. Everything else was secondary.

  8. skylion says:

    Sometimes the road must be traveled, no matter what comes at the end of the path.

  9. akagami says:

    So. I’ve had some time to recover from the shocku, so I’m in a better place. So what are my final thoughts on my favorite anime of the season?

    Hmm, overall I think the finale was decent. The execution was ok, and they made her passing less dramatic than it could have been. I did tear up a lot, leading up to the end of the piano piece, and during Kao-chan’s letter. I think they were more tears of bittersweet pain ・(/Д`)・

    I can live with the fact that Kao-chan didn’t have long left to live. But the fact that they couldn’t properly confess to each other, or even have some shared time as a couple, just kills me inside. If it had an ending like Hanbun no Tsuki ga Noboru Sora, you know, I can live with that happily. But an ending like this? Makes me want to flip tables, but I’m still too sad to do so.

    I’m ok that Tsubaki didn’t try to weasel her way in and play the cry-on-my-shoulder rebound card. Actually, I would be really happy if they stayed as friends. I so do not approve of the Tsubaki x Kousei pairing. I hope Nagi grows up and steals Kousei away. Take that Tsubaki!

    Overall, I really enjoyed the series. The artwork, the music, the character interactions, the music. Did I mention the music? I was rating the series a 9 heading into the finale, but the way it panned out made me subtract a full point, so this’ll end with an 8. That their relationship never got to take off… gah \(>o<)ノ. Maybe I'll dock another 0.5 off.

    I do feel like there was a lot of unfinished content that I would have liked to see fleshed out… namely the interactions and rivalry between Kousei, Emi, and Takashi; the growth of Aiza-chan with Kousei; Kao-chan and Kousei's (never-happened) relationship; an awesome duet with Kao-chan and Kousei (I'm still very bitter about the last two).

    My biggest beef with Kousei was that he was too beta. Guys should have some initiative. Grow some backbone. No one likes wimps. But the rest of the show made up for it, so I can live with his lackluster personality.

    In terms of the OP/ED, I really liked the first OP (Kirameki by wacci), and while I initially disliked the second OP (Nanairo Symphony by Coalamode.), it grew on me.

    Hmmm… I wonder what Kao-chan left behind for Kousei in the letter?

    • akagami says:

      Oh wait, I missed it, it was the picture, right? orz. I was too busy wallowing in bitterweet tears that I didn’t clue in.

    • Highway says:

      I kind of think that Kousei and Kaori’s relationship was probably as best as it could be for them. We can give Kousei a hard time for not confessing to Kaori, but given Kaori’s letter and her long-time love-from-afar for Kousei, you have to put some of the ‘non-confessing’ blame on her too. She knew he was into her. She totally did. And I think she intentionally kept him just that little bit away, maybe not all the way at arm’s length, but with that space nonetheless, so that he didn’t get too attached to her.

      Maybe she just knew that there’s a difference between losing that crush and losing that reciprocated love. Or maybe she knew that she just couldn’t promise anything. She certainly saw what happened to Kousei before, and didn’t try to get close to him until two years later.

      Personally, I don’t have any issue with Kousei and Tsubaki, except that Tsubaki needs to be more honest with herself. Maybe Kashiwagi can beat it into her head.

      • akagami says:

        I think it was more of that she knew she didn’t have much time, and didn’t want to break him again. But even still… =( I agree, she kept that lie going a lot longer than was good for them (or me). Though it must have been really hard for her to be so close, yet force herself to keep herself away. It reminds me of 98º – The Hardest Thing… while I can understand the sentiment, I disagree 100%.
        (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻ (I’ve recovered enough to start flipping tables).

        Nothing really personal against Tsubaki, I just don’t like childhood friend romances. Just generally against it.

  10. akagami says:

    *sigh*… and here I thought I was on a good streak, and then spammy appears from the shadows…

    (ノ`⌒´)ノ~~~ ┫ (spammy)

Leave a Reply to Joojoobees