Yesterday wo Uttate [Review]
- Studios: Doga Kobo
- Source: Manga
- Genres: Slice of Life, Drama, Romance, Seinen
- Synopsis: “The coming-of-age story follows a university graduate named Rikuo who has not been able to find permanent employment after college, a mysterious woman named Haru who has a pet crow, and Rikuo’s former university classmate Shinako.” -MU
Love is a complicated subject and isn’t easily explained in words. Just does it mean to love someone? Yesterday wo Utatte explores the ambiguous entity that is love through the eyes of four characters: Rikuo, Shinako, Haru, and Rou.
The drama is a love square in a BIG circle. The characters tend to go about the situation in very roundabout ways (hence the BIG circle) and answer get tiresome but that’s what makes the show so interesting. The story can get a bit tedious and drawn out but the tension stayed high enough to keep my attention throughout the show.
Artwork & Animation:
The composition of the show was so well done from the positioning of the characters that appear on screen, the ambient scenery, and even the photographs that Rikuo takes. The color palette was very minimalistic and but at the same time, the few colors that were used had great contrast with each other creating very vivid images. The backgrounds were pure eye candy and honestly, I wish there was more!
A strong point in the show, the characters are well written and complex, each with their own set of quirks and internal problems. You can clearly see how each character starts carving their own path, even if they don’t know exactly where that path leads. Rikuo’s hesitation to take a leap because of his habit of relying on others slowly disappears into determination and ambition as he pushes for what he thinks is the love of his life. Similarly the others push towards their wants and needs, which conflict with the others interest and that’s how the story develops.
Sound (OST & Voice Acting):
This may be strange to say in a section where I talk specifically about the sounds in the show…but I really enjoyed the use of silence. One of the things that I love about this show is the emotions that are constantly being displayed on the screen. You’ve heard the saying “sometimes, silence speaks louder than words”? The raw emotions that the characters display are seen in their body movements and gestures without the need for music. The voice acting easily outshines the soundtrack, in my opinion. But that’s not saying that the soundtrack is bad! It captures the ambiance of the show with a soft soundtrack features more organic sounds from acoustic guitars and pianos, though there are some upbeat poppy songs for those energectic scenes!
To be honest, a big reason why I really wanted to watch this show was the setting. Following the university graduates: Rikuo and Shinako was really appealing as it isn’t a scenario that’s used often in anime. Highschool tends to be the “prime” of a person’s life but there’s a lot more growing and learning that occurs after you graduate. And personally I think that makes the characters that much more down to earth, as we will always learn regardless of where we are in life. But I’m going to put it out there…I do not agree with the ending. It leaves quite an awful after taste, as if all of the pain and effort was seemingly pointless.
Yesterday wo Utatte extremely well written from the characters, their motives, their manner of speech, everything really flowed and connected with each other. The presentation of budding love in young adults is an awkward and sometimes hurtful path with no visible destination at the end. Yesterday wo Utatte focuses on those elements and creates a story that epitomizes the struggle of dating during your youth.
Best Girl: Yuzuhara Chika
While she had a short amount of screen time in the show, Chika had a really big impact on the progression of the show. I also liked her nonchalant personality in contrast, even if it is misleading to others. Her interactions with Rikuo is when the story begins to development in a more dynamic manner, which becomes a snowball effect as you’ll see later on in the show.
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