It’s another one of those rare occasions where I was reading the manga first so that means I’ll have to go into Jijou wo Shiranai Tenkousei ga Guigui Kuru (My Clueless First Friend) with judgmental eyes that I normally hate having. Be that as it may, I’ve seen some anime that was better than the manga and I’ve seen some that worked better as a manga than an anime (Fukumenkei Noise, Tomo-chan is a Girl… I’m looking at you, specifically). Which category does this anime fall into?
First Episode Synopsis
Akane Nishimura has a problem. Everybody in her school thinks she’s cursed and so she has been given the nickname The Grim Reaper. Kids make fun of her all the time but one day all of that changes when a boy named Taiyo Takada transfers to her school. Taiyo; however, is a complete idiot and doesn’t understand that Akane is being made fun of. Instead, when he finds out that she’s a Grim Reaper, he thinks it’s the coolest thing in the world and tries to befriend her. Akane isn’t open to friendship at first but Taiyo begins to insert himself more and more into her life and suddenly, things change!
He does this by standing up for her with a group of kids try to get Taiyo to walk home with them instead of Akane. His brainlessness turns the tables on them and he ends up getting his way and walks home with Akane. All the while, the more Taiyo hangs around her, the more she begins to realize that she made a first for the first time in forever. In fact, she had been lying to her father whenever he asked how school has been going. The fact that she made a friend and that it’s no longer a lie really touches her heart.
While there wasn’t much to the first episode story-wise, it hits you with an innocent charm!
YES – The manga is cute, and the anime is even cuter. To answer my question in my opening remarks, this is a case (and I’m only judging this based on one episode, mind you) that the anime seems better than the source. In the manga, they really play the whole “SHE’S THE GRIM REAPER!” joke with Taiyo over and over and over to the point where I got sick of him thinking he would get grim reaper powers by hanging out with Akane.
In the anime, that’s toned down a bit. Sure, it’s still there but it’s not as in-your-face as it was in the manga which makes it strike a better balance. Plus, they really focused on the emotions of the characters more. Either that or their emotions from the manga translated well into anime form.
My only complaint about the show is the hair highlights. Why in the hell do their highlights look like a 1999 JASC Paint Shop Pro 6.0 blur effect!? Like… they have solid shading for everyone and everything else but the hair has its own super low-res ugly shading that is truly distracting as all hell! I don’t know who made that design decision but they need to reconsider their knowledge of aesthetics.
But hey… the anime, cuteness, characters, and story make up for some atrocious-looking highlights so this is one to watch if your blood sugar is running low.