Nisekoi ReviewKatrina Hummel
Nisekoi is a 20 episode anime based on the manga written by Naoshi Komi of the same name. The anime began airing in January of 2014, and ended in May. The studio responsible for Nisekoi is Shaft, of Bakemonogatari and Madoka Magica fame. The first season is only 20 episodes, but season two has been green lit and will begin airing March, 2015. Which depending on when you read it, is this month!
The plot to Nisekoi started out as a sort of Romeo and Juliet story, except if Romeo and Juliet hated each other and our two families were yakuza and gangsters. Our main male character is Raku Ichijo, the son of the leader of the yakuza faction called the Shuei-Gumi. Our main female character is Chitoge Kirisaki, the daughter of the leader of the rival gang called Beehive. In order to prevent a war between the two factions that would undoubtedly tear the whole city apart, the leaders decide to pair their children up as a lovey dovey couple. The only problem here.. Is they hate each other with a passion. Nisekoi in Japanese literally means fake love, so they must fake a romance convincing enough to everyone around them. Ichijo carries around a locket from a promise made to his first love ten years ago, however he doesnt remember her name or face. A few clues pop up about the person with whom he made this promise (probably to marry) with, but alas, the season ends without knowing. Good thing season two will begin airing this month. I cant wait! There are other girls with whom take a liking to Ichijo, one of which is the girl who Ichijo himself has a crush on, but of course everyone can see it but themselves. Overall I thought the plot at first was pretty generic and bland, but at around episode 10 things started to pick up and I found myself anxiously clicking to the next episode to find out what happens. At some points it was frustrating because it sets up impossible situations, and you will be cheering for something to happen, and then inevitably something will happen to drag the two away from each other.
I hate to say it but all the characters were pretty much the stereotype, like you have your fiery tsundere Kirisaki, the quiet nice girl Onodera who has a crush on Ichijo, the pervy yet hilarious best friend Maiko, the overly manly hitwoman Tsugumi who cant figure out why everyone mistakes her for a man, plus other character types. I personally thought Tsugumi and Ruri were the most interesting. Ruri is Onoderas best friend who tries to set up situations where Onodera can be alone with Ichijo and then berates her for being unable to pull any moves on the guy she likes. She was super great and kept making me laugh. They all had their moments, and they werent boring characters at all, just it was really easy to see how theyd react to something. There was a lot of character development! I was really impressed with how much they changed over just 20 episodes. Im looking forward to seeing how they continue changing in season two.
The animation for Nisekoi was super great. I could tell it was done by the people who did Bakemonogatari right away. It has a lot of cinematographic genius right from the start. In one of the very first scenes, Ichijo is standing in a kitchen, and even though they just show the kitchen for maybe two seconds, I could tell that the kitchen was incredibly detailed. It really impressed me. There are a lot of interesting uses of art, and quick screen changes and sparkles. Oh man, sparkles every where. The use of fan service is a bit over the top, but I cant really blame it, I am hesitant to call this a harem anime but it kind of is in its own way. Theres not only a beach episode, but also a hot spring AND a teaching someone how to swim episode. Its dripping with fan service. Its drawn absolutely beautifully though so I cant really complain. Dont forget to watch all the way to the end for some really cute ending cards!!!
It wasnt really the music that caught my attention, but rather the sound effects that were used. Being Shaft, they do love to use their gags, and each gag had a certain sound effect that went with it. The openings and endings were really good, one of them sung by ClariS, who I really like. They ending animations were really pretty too, matching the music well and focusing on a different girl every few episodes.
Overall I really liked Nisekoi! I admit it was a little rough at some parts, being a little too generic, but it wasnt bad enough that I ever thought about dropping it. Nisekoi was one of 2014s more popular anime for a reason. I would recommend it, especially that season two will be upon us her shortly. After it ended I am dying to know what happens next!
Disclosure: We are provided copies of games from the game companies for some games that we review.
"Hello! I'm Katrina, a senior in college and major in Japanese. My interests include anime and Japan, but recently also drawing and guitar. I'm looking forward to doing a lot of anime reviews!"
About the Author: Katrina Hummel
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