Posted on 16 July 2009 with categories: Aoi Hana



At the moment, there is no doubt for me that Aoi Hana is the best series to debut this summer season, and this episode only reinforced this. From the very beginning, it’s been a consistently excellent yuri series with believable and charming characters. I’m also really glad to see that the great animation wasn’t just something of the first two episodes: this episode yet again looked great, with detailed animated shots and some great artwork, despite the down to earth character-designs.

This episode also surprised me with how the two lead characters didn’t become a couple. Instead, Fumi started dating the captain of the basketball club, while Akira had simply been going out with her friends and is still looking. But then again, this is anime. Has there ever been a romance story in which two childhood friends did not fall in love with each other at some point?

I’m curious as to how many episodes there are going to be. Unfortunately, the episode page of ANN is completely messed up in this case, so there is no way of telling whether there are actually going to be 11 episodes, or whether there are going to be more. Interestingly, the manga this is based on only has two volumes. That’s pretty short for a manga, and yet it feels perfect for a short story like this one.
Rating: ** (Excellent)
Very nice romantic developments, especially for Fumi.

13 Responses

  1. Perrin4869 says:

    I’ve been wondering:
    If this series were shounen ai, would the males following it still be following it? I mean no offense to anyone, but I know I wouldn’t…

  2. psgels psgels says:

    Perrin: actually, I enjoyed Junjo Romantica for what it was, until it became horribly paced and a downright cheese-fest.

    I think that one thing that’s wrong with shounen ai series that yuri shows manage to avoid is that they always make their characers way too feminine in order to attract fangirls, even though most gays are perfectly normal human beings.

    Yuri shows lack these exaggerated stereotypes. We have harems for that one.

  3. L189 says:

    According to MAL and Mahou there really will be 11 episodes

  4. Anonymous says:

    The Aoi Hana mango has 4 complete volumes and is still running

    http://www.mangaupdates.com/series.html?id=2577

  5. tealovertoma says:

    I saw one episode of Junjou Romantica and when the guy just started to lick the other guy’s foot I closed the episode.

    I think I’d watch a very well executed shounen ai, but that seems to be a very rare phenomenon indeed.

  6. The manga just published its 26th chapter, making it certain that a 5th volume is in the works, so there is plenty of material for an eleven episode effort.

  7. psgels psgels says:

    Okay, so that’s the last time I’m going to use ANN as a source for the amount of episodes/volumes of a series. And to be honest, MAL is an even worse source in that matter: they just go with the number that seems the most likely, without backing it up whatsoever. Not sure whether Mahou is reliable or not.

  8. Tracer says:

    lol it’s like they all of a sudden just decided turn up the animation quality. Reminds me of what J.C. Staff did with Kimikiss.

    But yeah, I agree on your comment that Aoi Hana is the best series to debut this summer season. Kenichi Kasai manages to do some of the best manga adapations I’ve seen.

    But my only problem is, did Akira feel jealousy when she saw Fumi with Yasuko? If that was the case then that seems a bit too forced and sudden (though it might just have been shocking to Akira).

  9. Kero says:

    @ Tracer “did Akira feel jealousy when she saw Fumi with Yasuko? If that was the case then that seems a bit too forced and sudden (though it might just have been shocking to Akira). ”

    She was just shocked. It’s still too early for Akira to develop any romantic feelings (for anyone). She’s extremely immature in that regard (that’s also the reason she was that surprised to see Fumi and Yasuko being so chummy with each other).

  10. TJR says:

    It’s Fuji TV. Nowadays, they only approve 11 episodes for most noitaminA and NOISE shows. DVD release information at CDJapan also confirms the episode count.

    As for BL, bear in mind that the genre is aimed squarely at fangirls and not the gay community. Indeed, the appeal is one of feminism (one partner may be weak, degraded, and submissive, but it’ll never be a woman in that position) and not an embracing of male homosexuality. That’s why certain characters are very effeminate – the writers want the relationship to resemble a heterosexual one (albeit with the loss of gender imbalances) as best as possible.

    On the other hand, Aoi Hana is directly aimed at lesbians.

  11. Howling-kun says:

    I agree this is the best of the season.
    UmiMono is a close second for me.

  12. aegd says:

    Dropped. Probably wouldn’t have bothered watching at all if I had know that it was a yuri shows.

    This along with the harm genre is probably my least favourite kinds of anime.

    give me more honey x clover or nodame cantabile please or something that can match up to them.

  13. Smithy says:

    Loving this series too. ^^

    Actually feel they did bump up the animation quality a notch, I mean just look at how intricately they animated Fumi and Akira’s hair in some scenes this week.

    What I love in this series is the contrast between Akira and Fumi. Akira is more outgoing, bold and worldly in some aspects but about romantic love she still doesn’t seem to have grown enough to even feel such emotions. Fumi on the other hand is meek, shy and easily impressionable but she’s had her heart broken and isn’t unwilling to dive into another romantic relationship, emotional and physical.

    Curious to see where this will lead to.

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  • Bam
    (Wednesday, Sep 17. 2014 10:17 AM)
    @Emma: Hence my offputing attitude towards generic anime in general.
  • Emma
    (Wednesday, Sep 17. 2014 10:12 AM)
    But yeah, I don’t finish stuff I don’t like any more, actually don’t care about is probably a better choice of words than don’t like.
  • Emma
    (Wednesday, Sep 17. 2014 10:00 AM)
    Tears to tiara has a ridiculous amount of unnecessary characters, the pacing and direction is a disaster , the characters are bland and the end twist is embarrassing, it was a lifeless and empty anime that put me off the medium for some time, I should have never did the “it might get better” “I have to complete it” mentality back then.
  • Emma
    (Wednesday, Sep 17. 2014 09:57 AM)
    I plan on doing a third watch of Hako come to think of it soon.
  • Bam
    (Wednesday, Sep 17. 2014 09:55 AM)
    @Emma: Hmmm … they both sound interesting. I actually like the artwork that I found on mouryou no hako and actually have no problem with fast dialogue (I kept up with Tatami Galaxy with not much problem after all) so Imma download an episode of each and give ‘em a go tonigt. Thx.
  • Emma
    (Wednesday, Sep 17. 2014 09:48 AM)
    @Bam: I’d suggest you watch mouryou no hako instead as a better mystery series. However un-go wasn’t bad, I liked how it concluded and the mysteries themselves, it felt clever however it relies a bit on a certain supernatural character, the pacing is very fast and you really need to pay attention. The prequel ova offered the best of it .
  • Bam
    (Wednesday, Sep 17. 2014 09:40 AM)
    Btw I was always interested in Un-Go based on the promo materials, but can anyone confirm if it’s worth it?
  • Bam
    (Wednesday, Sep 17. 2014 09:37 AM)
    Never saw Tears to Tiara, it looked too awful. I have a trigger finger for dumping, or completely avoiding, anime nowadays. There’s too many shit shows and too little time.
  • Emma
    (Wednesday, Sep 17. 2014 09:36 AM)
    Okay its not that bad but I’m deliberately exaggerating for emphasis.
  • Emma
    (Wednesday, Sep 17. 2014 09:30 AM)
    But for all the mehs I can give for jormungand, maou-sama , their other comedies, for all my disdain of akame ga kill, I would rate tears to tiara below asura cryin, sword art, mahouka , selector infect wixoss twice combined.

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