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Yotsuba&! Anime Episode 1 Review

September 12, 2009

Am I the only one who was bothered by the first episode?

I was so excited about the first episode of Yotsuba that I actually went back and reread the first volume of the original manga. It would be a logical place to start, with the two-member Koiwai family moving into the neighborhood and getting into all sorts of tomfoolery as soon as Yotsuba sets her foot on pavement. Imagine my confusion when the show opened not with the interior view of a family van, but of the Koiwai living room, with Yotsuba and her dad playing jan-ken-pon. They even introduced that arrogant jackass Yanda early on, a character who isn’t supposed to make himself known until Chapter 30.

With the show slated for 24 episodes, my guess is that the director wanted to forgo all of the formalities and just take a nosedive into what the audience really wants. It’s understandable, given that Yotsuba is such an iconic manga. At the least, they’re going to slot one of those sentimental flashback or recap episodes somewhere in the middle of its run.

While I’m glad that Hiroshi Nishikiori, the director responsible for the Azumanga Daioh Anime adaptation, was able to reprise his role for the Yotsuba anime, it doesn’t carry that same effervescent quality of eternal childhood that was executed flawlessly in the former. They should have focused more on the kids rather than the adults. For example, they really dragged out the badminton fight between Jumbo and Yotsuba’s dad. Not to say that it wasn’t humorous, but they really didn’t have to spend more than a few minutes on the scene.

The seiyuu cast for Yotsuba is stellar. The actor for Yotsuba’s dad, Yuto Nakano, definitely exudes some likeness to his interpretation of Ginko from Mushi-shi with his smoky, placid voice. It has a real earthen quality that fits his laid-back personality. Yotsuba herself was played by none other than her spiritual fraternal twin of Chiyo, Tomoko Kaneda. She generally hits all the correct pitches for the impulsive and quixotic titular character, but can sometimes come off as a bit docile. I never thought I’d say this, but she needs to make Yotsuba sound a little crazier. Yanda was voiced by Katsuyuki Konishi, something I was not prepared for in the show’s only real ‘antagonist,’ if you can even call him that. I mean, you just can’t unhear Kamina! Finally, there was Jumbo voiced by Jouji Nakata, also known for lending his voice in the Count in Gankutsuou. Jumbo’s supposed to be someone whose bark is stronger than his bite, a lovable oaf of sorts, so no complaints on that end.

There wasn’t an OP song for the first episode, which I’m hoping they’ll fix later in the series. Opening theme songs make shows a hell of a lot more memorable in the long run. They did, however, keep the Yotsuba instrumental soundtrack for the musical score, which was a nice touch. The ED song, Weepin’rains, makes me smile. It reminded me of the first time I watched and fell in love with the Azumanga series. Coupled with the bizarre kaleidoscopic artwork of flower petals and four-leaf clovers, it’s a very heartwarming sequence.

So as long as they don’t pull any more fast ones, the Yotsuba&! Anime is likely to be the best show this season next to 20th Century Boys and Mirai Nikki. Next week just can’t come soon enough!

For more information about this post, please consult this link.


I’m dead inside, guys.

16 Comments leave one →
  1. Anonymous permalink
    September 12, 2009 11:01 pm

    >my guess is that the director wanted to forgo all of the formalities and just take a nosedive into what the audience really wants

    sounds like a Deen animu

    >information about this post …

    :((( so there’s no yotsuba animu??? i’m confuzed…

    (Your version seems pretty awesome though.)

    • saturnity permalink*
      September 13, 2009 12:20 am

      Would I ever lie to you?

      • Anonymous permalink
        September 13, 2009 2:22 am



        The fansubber sure resized the video to a strange resolution. 4:3 aspect ratio videos are typically 640 x 480, but this one is 600 x 450. ┐(´д`)┌

  2. September 13, 2009 12:02 am

    Had me fooled for about 00:19:14 seconds. Well played.

    • saturnity permalink*
      September 13, 2009 12:19 am

      Damn it! That’s 1 second short of satisfactory!

  3. September 13, 2009 9:11 pm

    Curse your trickery!

  4. September 19, 2009 3:35 am

    When I read the title, I actually got really excited about Yotsuba’s having an anime adaptation… What a fool I was.

  5. September 21, 2009 10:05 pm

    I wasn’t fooled, but I’d want to know if this is a sign of happiness that the manga is continuing to be published now. 😛

  6. yare permalink
    October 5, 2009 3:04 pm

    D: I read the title and just the title and spend like 10 mins looking for the episode T.T you trick me now I’m crying like seriously crying D:< you're bad

  7. August 23, 2010 3:27 am

    I lol’d. It was a sad lol, though, as it was a reverse lulz, one that was made at my own expense. I will now go cry and remorse the fact that there most likely won’t be a Yotsuba&! anime.

  8. Masashi permalink
    August 29, 2010 10:47 pm

    T^T I hate youuuuuuuuuuuuuu!!! your so mean!! i spent SO much time looking for Yotsuba& episode 1!! and now i scroll down and see there are commentS, and i see people complaining about trickery!! You played a very mean joke on us…we’re all mad…>:( your a bad bad boy…bad boy…

  9. Lemon Wedges permalink
    October 27, 2010 10:17 am

    Wait a sec . . . . 20th Century Boys? Mirai Nikki? You awful person! 🙂

  10. November 1, 2010 10:07 pm


  11. Lani Umezu permalink
    June 21, 2011 1:40 pm

    i couldnt believe it at the start. but i saw the pic and i was like no way….kept reading…looks real….started believing…saw mean comments, clicked on link……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….GRAHHHHHRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!!
    YOU MADE ME WASTE 2 MINUTES OF MY LIFE! oh well its very clever of you i wisih i were that clever im so stupid…..ENJOY EVERYTHING

  12. atra permalink
    August 5, 2011 1:07 pm

    hey Is this real ? I tried to look for the Episode, can you link me if its true?
    Thank you

  13. tsuy0gari permalink
    May 7, 2014 12:04 pm

    f*ck you!!! …… is all I can say to this. FCUK YOU.

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