Bokura Ga Ita. A Quick Analysis.

Make no mistake about it, this show fills up all emotional needs for this season. A rather typical shoujo anime but extremely well-done.

Let me just briefly list down in point form why I now feel a bit uneasy after two episodes. And this is a good thing because I normally feel very queasy after good romance stories. It’s like a mix between eating too much cod liver oil and staring at naked tits. Well, that Bokura ga Ita has even managed to reach out to someone as emotionally-dull as me is a fine sign that this series has done everything right so far.

And who says we don’t get good anime anymore?

Basically, let me just point out why this show rocks.

The story is great. It’s from the girl’s POV and there’s a finely tuned balance of past tragedy, current infatuation and future development. No one rushes into anything concrete but there’s a lot of relationship progression in two mere episodes. In other words, it cuts out the typical merry-go-round romance but yet still keeps the main characters apart.

There is a silent loli like Nagato Yuki.

The show is basically conversation. It’ll mostly be two people talking and this coupled with the white-out spotlight effect, draws you into what they are saying.

It helps that they speak crisp, concise and sensible lines too. None of those cliche stuff. I actually have to pause and think about what they are saying sometimes and it does make sense.

The art style is uniquely simplistic. There is very little detail on the backgrounds, with a white-out effect creating emphasis on the people having conversations.

The white-out effect is jarring at first but once you get used to it, it subtly brings emphasis and focus to the scene. The corners and non-essential parts of the background are "dodged" out (the photoshop tool) so it looks a bit patchy at first.

There’s a lot of white. Sometimes, the backgrounds disappear to be replaced by white. This injects a sense of confusion and loss, adding to the ambience.

Faces also are whited-out as well, during closeups. Sometimes, the Yakumo effect is used. The one where Yakumo’s face is not drawn in to let viewers guess her true feelings. It leaves things very open-ended and intriguing.

The powerful use of silence and a dull "silent sound" for key scenes adds tension. When the BGM kicks in, the contrast is quite apparent.

Nana’s hairstyle changes as much as Haruhi.

The scene changes very quickly and often, creating a fast pace. Each scene however, consists only pretty much only people talking, so it slows things down. This combination blends perfectly for great show pacing. I never felt bored or fidgety yet there was enough time to flesh each scene out.

The voice acting is superb. Nana is very cute, yet when she’s pissed you can feel her irritation come out of her voice. Yanou’s voice is aptly cool and calm, perfect for trapping fangirls.

The animation is not particularly high budget but it uses its budget well. It’s sort of Zen. Anime Zen. If Coyote Ragtime Show is the lap of luxury, Bokura is Zen.

To conclude, everyone must watch this. Perhaps I am biased because I don’t watch much shoujo (if any at all besides Ouran) and the contrast with the shounen and seinen stuff tricks me into thinking Bokura is very novel.

7 Responses to “Bokura Ga Ita. A Quick Analysis.”  

  1. 1 Sasa

    Oh, okay, I read shôjo manga all the time (good, not really, but enough to be very familiar with shôjo). In fact, I believe that Bokura ga Ita is one of the better shôjo series. I read a few chapters of it and what I have seen so far is outstanding (in terms of shôjo). It is not a very original story, but the execution in the manga is particularily good. Bokura ga Ita just has the “mood”, like you said.

    Actually the anime doesn’t appeal to me that much from what I see from the screenshots. I don’t like too much talking in anime and I’m missing the beautiful backgrounds that usually comes with “moody”, atmospheric anime (Mushishi, Aria, YKK, Emma).

  2. 2 T_T|||

    Only Chinese subs are available. Yay.

  3. 3 tj_han

    There are a few ways to produce “mood”. One is the ARIA way, with lots of scenery. Another is the Bokura method of just letting the focus be on the characters and not sidetracking with needless background.

    An analogy would be eating sashimi compared to ..some expensive fish dish. Both rock.

  4. 4 Sasa

    Ah yeah, I see what you mean. Well, I didn’t really try to compare the two animes, I just wanted to say that I personally prefer “moody” atmosphere in the Aria way when it comes to “moody” anime.

    Characters actually are very important to me, but for some reason, I think that an anime just has to look good. For a focus on character development without “needless background”, I guess manga is the better medium for it. In manga, story and characters are the most important point to me and I don’t miss detailed backgrounds when they aren’t there.

    A propos detailed backgrounds in manga. I am wondering why Eden did not get an anime yet. It is the kind of manga I would recommend to anybody who doesn’t restrain him/herself to shôjo manga and I really with for an anime.

  5. 5 Sasa

    Oh damn, why can’t you edit your comments yourself? T_T Of course I wish for an anime… I’m so sorry (I can’t go in the channel now).

  6. 6 tik

    I find Nana’s character very cute, haha

  7. 7 T_T|||

    WTF. The ending of the OP is waiting in the air for a thousand summers.

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