Anime Review: One Week Friends

anime_one_week_friendsHere is an interesting show. Kaori is a young girl who doesn’t talk much at school. She doesn’t talk to people. She doesn’t have friends. In fact she seems like she goes out of her way to keep people at a distance. But there is a reason for this. An accident that happened years ago has left her in a state where each week she loses all memories of anybody who becomes close enough to be considered a friend. The only exception is her family. Okay, yes, lets get it out in the open. This plot really has a lot of scientific issues. The forgets only those she considers a friend, and always on Monday morning? Yes. It’s a TV show. It is make believe. This is not a reality TV show. Get over it.

Moving on. Hase-kun has noticed that she has no friends. In fact, one could say he has a crush on her and can’t get her off his mind. One could say that. It wouldn’t necessarily be me. It wouldn’t necessarily be true. But it might be. Anyway, he decides that he wants to get to know her and tries to “push through” her stubborn silence and standoffishness (wow, no red line, that is actually a legit word). Now lets talk about Hase a bit. He’s, well… I don’t know how else to say it. He’s a moron when it comes to girls, and lets face it. Guys like us watch shows like this because we want to believe there is hope for us after all.

Anyway, Hase-kun is no smooth operator. He is awkward, gets flustered way too easily, and has a hard time “manning up”. If anything, he is the worst person to try and force his way into a friendship with a girl that doesn’t want any friends. But, luck is on Hase’s side. Kaori actually wants friends, but finds it too difficult and painful because every Monday she forgets them. What does every high school kid do when your new friend “pretends” to not know who you are or have ever talked to you before Monday morning? They get upset and call you names and spread rumors about you.

I won’t spoil the entire show for you but let’s talk about the first episode or two a bit. As I said Hase-kun is determined to become friends with Kaori. He pushes his way into friendship with her only to have her, guess what, forget who he is Monday morning. Even after Kaori tells him about her condition he doesn’t really believe her. It takes some time for him to understand that she is telling the truth. Hase finally talks Kaori into becoming friends and gets her to keep a “friend diary” where she rights down the things she has learned about her new friend. Every Monday she reads this notebook so that she can remember what has happened before.

As I said above, this was a very interesting show. The setting is nearly always at school so you could call it a school anime, but the school is much more of a backdrop setting than the story itself. Many school anime’s weave the everyday school lives of the kids into the story. This one uses the school more as a, it’s where we get a chance to spend time together. After reading the synopsis of the show I figured, “oh sure, after one or two episodes she will stop forgetting and they will move on to a boring plot.” Wrong. They kept the plot through the entire show.

This show does more than give your brain just a bit of a workout on thinking about a “what if” scenario that is rather unusual. They actually do a rather good job of helping you understand what your life might be like if you had the same affliction. Just what would it be like for me personally to have a friend that every Monday morning I had to re-introduce myself as if for the first time. How would it feel to be that person who is afflicted and only knowing people because of what you wrote in a notebook, always worrying that you might lose the notebook and thus lose your “memory”. I really enjoyed the show.

Summary: Nice, relaxing anime that has a good story and introduces you to some interesting characters and interesting concepts.
Seasons: 1
Season length: 12 episodes
Episode length: 24 minutes
Content: Clean
Language: Japanese with English subtitles

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