Anime Corner: Sasaki and Miyano Review

Let’s Only Think About Love!

What’s the Story?

Miyano is a fan of the Boys’ Love genre, so much so that he’s always fantasying about the other boys in his all-boys school getting together as couples. That’s when he meets Sasaki, a tall and laid back senior with a bit of a reputation for getting into trouble. Sasaki says he wants to get to know Miyano better and before he knows it Sasaki is always hanging around and borrowing manga from his collection. With all of his fantasying could Miyano finally have found himself in a real-life Boys’ Love romance? But how does he really feel about Sasaki? He’s never been attracted to another boy before and he was interested in a girl in middle school. But that doesn’t explain the flutter in his heart when Sasaki is around.

The Review:

Well, I definitely appear to have a type when it comes to the Boys’ Love genre. Mostly it comes down to how much I enjoyed Given (check out my review HERE). So, when I saw another series with a black-haired and a red-haired protagonist couple I was sold immediately. How does the show stack up? It’s…okay. I’ll admit I’m not much of a romance fan, or at least I’m not all that interested when a series is just purely focussed on romance. I prefer my romance mixed in with other genres, but as a standard romance goes this works perfectly well. It’s sweet. Sasaki and Miyano make a cute couple, they have clear chemistry and common interests and are supportive of one another. Sasaki can be a little possessive and overprotective, but what I like about the big lug is that he recognises that about himself and he constantly catches himself to make sure he doesn’t cross a line. He’s also endlessly patient with Miyano who isn’t even sure if he likes other boys in that way. Basically Sasaki is my favourite character in this series, but let’s talk about the rest of the show.

If you’re not a romance fan, or interested in the main couple as I was, then I can easily imagine this series being frustrating for a lot of people. It’s definitely a slow burn, there’s a lot of agonising over feelings and what things mean, especially on Miyano’s part, but no real action until the final episode. Honestly there are very little real obstacles to Miyano and Sasaki’s relationship, everyone is very supportive and accepting of the two. There are couple of brief discussions about some of the issues a same sex couple might face, but no real examples that the main pair have to deal with personally. It’s just a very sweet, wholesome and laid back experience, with a couple of funny characters and a lot of cuteness.

Miyano is definitely the main obstacle to this relationship. He’s an overthinker and questions himself endlessly about what he’s feeling. In any other romance I’d be pulling my hair out over stuff like that, and it’s generally the reason I don’t watch a lot of pure romance series. Here though I’m okay with it because this is the first time that Miyano has found himself attracted to someone of the same sex. That is a big deal and requires a lot of questioning and self-examination, which I think this series handles really well. There’s a clear and natural progression of Miyano coming to understand his feelings and I appreciate the effort put into that. On the whole it feels like a lot of thought and care was put into this series, even if they could have squeezed a heck of a lot more drama out of this situation.

On the animation front, there’s nothing really all that special about this series, but there’s nothing bad either. The animation just does exactly what it needs to do to convey each scene. As I’ve said this is a fairly wholesome and laidback series so there’s lots of long pauses and panning shots just to add to the mood of the piece. There’s no real action so the animators never really get a chance to properly flex, outside of sticking more and more sparkly bits into scenes (which I take it are a staple of the genre). There are some good reaction shots and well-timed gags. I don’t really know what else to say about this series. It’s not overly flashy, but then it’s not trying to be. It’s just a quiet, sweet little romance between two guys.

The Verdict:

In the end, Sasaki and Miyano is a sweet little romance. If that’s what you’re looking for then this will be perfect for you. Likewise if you get yourself invested in the main characters relationship you’ll have some fun here. If, however, you’re not in either of those camps then I feel like there isn’t much this show has to offer. It’s a slow burn with the bulk of the series dedicated to Miyano coming to terms with how he feels about Sasaki. There’s no drama or action outside of that self-examination and all of the supporting cast are just, well, supportive, with no real obstacles in the way. If you’re after something a bit spicier or with a bit of flash then you’re best off looking elsewhere. For me this was a bit of fun, I’m not sure how well I’ll remember in a few months time, but I had a good time while watching it and a show doesn’t really need to do more than that. See you next time!

Chris Joynson, aka the Infallible Fish, is a writer, blogger and lover of animation living in Sheffield. The blog updates every Friday or you can follow me on Twitter @ChrisGJoynson.

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