Outerhaven Anime: First Reaction – Rewrite

It has been five years since KEY released Rewrite as a visual novel. Now, here in 2016 we get to experience another epic story in the form of an anime. The first episode was a one-hour special which, after commercials were taken out, ended up being around 48 minutes long. The moment many KEY fans have been waiting for has arrived! Let’s take a look at how the first episode of Rewrite fared!

First Episode Impressions

The first episode of Rewrite did an amazing job of introducing us to all of the characters in the first half. Of course, Kotarou was the first character introduced to us and rightfully so since the story focuses around him. Kotarou is trapped in a dream world and ends up “dying,” but wakes up only to discover the that girl from his dreams is real. Before we get to the second half of the episode, Kotarou is tasked with finding Kotori. Her mother stops by and asks Kotarou to locate her as she has run off once again. Kotori likes playing in the forest and Kotarou knows this too well since this isn’t the first time he’s had to go look for her. He finds her sleeping under a tree and ends up taking her home.

The next day at school, we are introduced to the rest of the cast of characters: Lucia, the class representative, Shizuru who is on the morals committee, Chihaya, a transfer student who doesn’t exactly get off to a good start with Kotarou due to some… cherries… and Haruhiko who is a bit of a hothead and wants to beat the crap out of Kotarou, but always ends up in a situation where it gets delayed, much to his chagrin.

In the second half of the episode, we get to the really weird stuff surrounding the girl in Kotarou’s dream. For the sake of simplicity and the risk of slight spoilers, I’m just going to call her by her name Kagari. Kagari is making a habit out of sneaking into Kotarou’s room and biting his arm while he sleeps. An interesting facet about Kagari is when Kotarou becomes scared of her presence and tries to escape, she disappears when he calls out for Kotori, which instantly baits the audience into wanting to know why Kotori’s name has that effect.

Kotarou wants to visit the school’s “witch” in order to get some answers. When he gets to the school, he’s lead around by a series of messages until he is plunged into an alternate dimension where he meets two faeries that were created by garbage. Yes, the stuff we throw away… they, one day, just emerged from that. A massive beetle-like monster wakes up and attacks, but Kagari shows up to save the day. Kotarou is then thrust back into the real world where he believes he simply fell asleep and had a dream. He then comes across the school’s “witch” (aka Akane) and our first episode comes to a close.

So far, I am REALLY loving this adaptation of the visual novel. We have the majority of our characters in place and for those who haven’t read/played the visual novel, there’s enough material here to break your mind and make you want to watch more! I can’t wait to see how the show progresses and which route they take to the end. I wanted to enjoy the ride so I didn’t read up on it anywhere in case someone along the way stated that they would be taking Moon Route or the Terra Route. I want to experience it for myself.

I don’t usually do images in my first reactions, but I’m making an exception this time. When Kotarou went to the school and took a break from following the messages, he stopped and got himself a special drink…


Oh you cheeky bastards…

OP & ED Impressions

The opening theme served as the ending to the first episode of Rewrite, but both the opening and ending are performed by the same artist who is Runa Mizutani. The theme “Philosophyz” sounds like your standard KEY theme. Upbeat alternative rock song with a female vocal, but despite that, it sounds pretty good. Good enough to make me want to get the full version when it comes out. Come to think of it, I don’t think a KEY anime has ever had a bad opening theme, so it’s not a big surprise here.

Worth Watching?

MAYBE – I am only giving this a maybe because it depends on what kind of fan you are. If you’ve enjoyed KEY’s animes before, such as Air, Kanon, Clannad and Little Busters, then this is a resounding YES, but I do know people that don’t like KEY’s style and wouldn’t want to give Rewrite a try so this is kind of a fine line to walk on whether to recommend it or not. I am a KEY fan so this was a definite YES to me, but to each their own. I still think it’s worth anyone’s time, though!

About The Author

Josh Piedra

Josh (or J.J. as some have come to call him), is a long-time geek culture enthusiast with a deep passion for anime, manga and Japanese culture. Josh also has a Bachelor of Arts in Game Design and is a creative writer who has created original content for over 20 years! He is also the author of the original English light novel Final Hope.