Anime First Reaction: Ao no Orchestra

Slice-of-life and romance go hand-in-hand and when you combine them it produces my all-time favorite genre. Throw in music and you have a match only the gods could have created! This is why I’ve had Ao no Orchestra on my To Watch list for well over a year, just waiting and waiting for the day it would come out! Now, that moment has arrived and I can finally watch this show! After just one episode, was it worth the wait?

Let’s go!

First Episode Synopsis

Aono is a violinist. He loves playing it more than anything in the world because his father was a professional violinist and he was captivated by the sound. One day, that all changed and Aono gave up the violin for good. Now, he’s struggling to sleep at night and keep his grades up. He can’t even do well at P.E. as it seems any time they play a sport that involves a ball, he ends up getting beaned in the face and getting a nosebleed.

One day during class, Aono swears that he hears a violin playing. When he’s called into the guidance counselor’s office to talk about his career choice, he hears it again. The counselor mentions a person named Akine. In the next P.E. class, he gets beaned in the nose again and sent to the infirmary where Akine shows up and begins to play. This wakes Aono up and he ends up staring at her. One trickle of blood from the nose later due to his injury and your typical misunderstanding occurs. Things get even weirder when the counselor reveals that he lent Akine his violin! He used to be in an orchestra and asked Aono if he ever considered being a part of one. It got him thinking but suddenly that all came to a halt when he asks him if he could be Akine’s new teacher!

Worth Watching?

YES – All I can say is that this show was well worth the wait. My only gripe is how they treated Akine and Aono’s first meeting. It was really cute at first as they stared at each other with a sense of wonder and then it broke down into a typical poor comedic shouting match clearly painting Akine as a generic tsundere. I’m sure as the show goes on, this will remedy itself and it’ll become precious but I would have much preferred the cute and shy route rather than going full Asuka Langley.

Outside of that gripe, we don’t get the full picture of what happened to Aono’s father. At first, I thought that maybe he died and that was why Aono lost interest in the violin but apparently there was some affair scandal that deeply hurt his mom emotionally. Aono gave up the violin after his father told him to keep playing it even if it killed him. I guess that went hand-in-hand with him swearing that he would never hurt his mother as his father did.

There’s even a bit of a hypocritical side to Aono. He says he doesn’t want to hurt or burden his mother but he wants to go to a high school far away where nobody knows him which could do exactly that. I don’t know if Aono is just trying to be a complex character or if he’s just an emo idiot. Either way, you do relate and sympathize with him a little. Only if Akine could’ve been more like Kaori from Your Lie in April, I might have been fully on board with the romance straight out of the gate but this is going to be one where I’ll have to warm up to it over time…. Which is fine.

There was enough here for this show to be very interesting and I was invested in Aono as a character so it did its job of making me want to see more!