Volume 2 of NIS America’s charming “kimi no todoke — From Me to You” picks up right where the cliffhanger of January’s release left us.
Beware a spoiler if you haven’t watched the first volume, which I reviewed a few months ago.
Kurumi, the high school girl we all want to hate, has led Kazehaya to the sports equipment shed, where she’s arranged for Sawako and Ryu to be meeting. Kurumi’s purpose is to make Kazehaya think Sawako and Ryu are a budding couple so he’ll turn his affection toward Kurumi instead of Sawako.
Thankfully, it goes wrong — horribly, laugh-out-loud wrong, and Sawako finally learns the truth behind Kurumi’s fake friendship with her, the rumors against Sawako’s friends, all of it. But Sawako is a better person than many of us would be in that situation, bless her naive heart.
Who are all these people, you newcomers ask? They’re the central characters of the high school dramedy “kimi no todoke.” If you like your high school shows with as little clothing as possible, you’ll be disappointed. If you like intelligent, heartfelt drama and a nostalgic look at those days, this show’s for you.
I only had the chance to watch the first four episodes of this set before I had to file this write-up, but it’s enough to let me know this volume should be as good as the first. Poor Sawako and Kazehaya are still clueless about the other’s true feelings, but it’s drawn out in a reasonably realistic way since Sawako is so new to matters of the heart.
My big hope is that the supporting cast, Kazehaya’s friend Ryu and Sawako’s friends Chizuru and Ayane, will get some more development, and from the looks of the art book, that appears to be the case for at least a couple of them. And any time they want to bring out the adorable puppy Mar is fine with me.
For its concentrated cast of characters, there’s a lot going on under the surface. Like I said in my original review, issues vary, from misunderstandings and miscommunication to forming new friendships to the familiar bewilderment of first love and the burning question of whether those feelings are returned — a feeling that isn’t unique to teenagers.
Interestingly, NIS America skipped translating the 16th episode. A note on the disc says it’s a recap episode. Personally, I probably would have skipped watching it in that case, but I know a lot of people like to have the complete series, so I’m surprised they did this.
It doesn’t hurt my enjoyment, though, I still heartily recommend this series. The third volume (how long to they plan to torture these to lovebirds?) is due July 3.