Anime Review: Orange Episode 11

Suwa & Naho smiling

I hope that everyone is doing well, especially if you had lost anybody in the incident that happened fifteen years ago.

So far, things have been good, since I was able to do something relaxing during one of the most boring day of the week, and it gets even better when I can watch something enjoyable.

As most of you know, I have been following two shows this season, and both are now airing the final four episodes.

Today, I will be reviewing the latest episode of one of those shows, which is Orange episode 11.

As I have given a series synopsis in an earlier post, I will not go over it again.

Kakeru & Naho argue

The sports festival has concluded and everyone is in high spirits, since Kakeru has seemingly found the place where he belongs.

However, when Kakeru fails to keep a promise he made because a family member falls ill, and wants to check on them, he and Naho get into an argument that the letters of Naho and her friends predicts will lead to the worst possible falling out, and her friends must act in some way, before all their hard work goes to waste.

Naho & friends smiling at shrine

It is nice when a show does not end up being disappoint, is it not?

While Rewrite has ended up being disappointing fairly recently, this series has been pretty impressive in a few areas, and this episode sure did not disappoint me at all.

I really liked how nothing new suddenly cropped up in this episode, aside from the usual turmoil between friends that crops up every so often.

When writing a story, there are times when new things can crop up and then there are moments when it must utilize what it already has going for it.

In manga that are of a moderate length, such as Pandora Hearts, the last place where new things can be introduced would be the antepenultimate volume and everything after that must focus only on the biggest mysteries and reaching the final conflict.

However, in short works, like this one, such things must happen before the final four episodes, and then just move things along to the point where the protagonist succeeds or fails to achieve their goal.

Luckily, this is how things have occurred over the course of this, and it actually makes me want to continue on with the series, unlike Rewrite.

Nice job, TMS. You really understand the kind of story that you are adapting and making the right decision about where to head, in spite of the fact that this series is only being thirteen episodes long.

Now, I cannot say that anything that TMS makes from this point on would be gold in the world of anime, but they have at least shown that they can create a relatively decent show when they have the right staff on board, and that makes me much more willing to check out some of their other work.

I also liked how the episode felt pretty well balanced between its comedy and its serious moments.

In my review of the tenth episode of Rewrite, I stated that I really hated the comedic moment that occurred between Akane and Kotaru because the whole scene seemed like it was one of those sad, yet joyous, reunions with friends that have not been seen in a while and what 8bit did to create some humor actually ruined the moment.

However, in this episode, the scenes that were seemingly devastating actually felt sad and the comedic moments were actually funny because they occurred at points where moments of humors would not actually ruin things.

While I will not call Orange the greatest series ever, this is what I expect to find in a well-handled series.

After all, Edward Elric did not try to do anything funny when he faced Truth, so that he could get Alphonse Elric back.

Neither did comedic moments just suddenly crop up when Oz Vesalius put his differences with Jack aside in Pandora Hearts Volume 22, so that he could restore the Abyss to the way it once was in the beginning.

Seeing as TMS is the one behind this adaptation, they deserve a big round of applause.

I expect no less from a studio that has been in the industry for such a long time, and TMS really delivers. Keep up the good work, TMS, even if I know that, like every person that is good at something, you would no longer be able to create great works.

Hopefully, their decline does not happen as quickly as it did for Gonzo, who has been relatively silent ever since they made a sequel to Last Exile.

Another nice thing that I liked was how Naho's friend continued to stand by her side when she was going through a rough time.

While it has not been shown how many ups and downs Naho and her friends have experienced before Kakeru entered the picture, their bond already seems to be much stronger than that of just regular old friends.

In fact, I would possibly want to say that they are their own little family, much like how the delinquents that visited Yukine Miyazawa at school in Clannad's visual novel were essentially her family away from home ever since her brother died.

They each worried about about both Naho and Kakeru and wanted them both to be happy and they continue to show that worry when Naho experiences the kind of pain that everyone eventually experiences in life.

As I get older in my life, and my family gets entrenched with their own lives, or even starts suffering more from the effects of aging, I hope that the friends I made would worry about me just as much as these guys do.

Ah, to the heck with it, I wish that they were my actual family right now, even though those guys are obviously fictional characters.

With such a caring group of friends, I would be surprised if they fail in their goal to make sure that Kakeru does not end up go to his grave early, though I still do keep in mind that things can end up that way.

Since Takano Ichigo is the one that ultimately created this series, I think that she deserves quite a bit of applause, even if there are things that she could have improved upon, much like I have a lot more to learn to make my own stories and writing better.

Because she was able to do this, I hope that this series can show people out there that family really is not established by only blood and paper, like a lot of religious leaders believe.

Good job, Takano.

Even though this anime has not made me as impressed with her as I am with Jun Mochizuki and Kore Yamazaki, I wish her the best of luck, as she learns what she needs to learn so that she can shine along with those in the manga industry that have proven themselves to be great.

The thing that I liked the most though was the argument that occurred between Naho and Kakeru.

While fighting with those we care about make not be something that any of us want to go through in life, it is sometimes the only way that we can really understand each other.

For example, I have this friend that I relied on a lot and, even though I tend to be a lot more introverted, or shy, as the friend puts it, than that friend, I asked them if a certain scent I was smelling came from them and they thought that I wanted some because they had it, which may have been one of the things that led to a falling out, when I was actually just checking if my mind was not playing tricks on me.

If we did not have the falling out, which still has not been fully repaired, even though I want things to go back to normal, they would not have realized how easy it was to actually hurt me.

After all, in a society that expects men to ones that charge in and not express their emotions too much, the males in society tend to be emotionally weaker than females because they do not know how to deal with their emotions, like letting it all out in a proper manner, such as crying in the arms of a spouse or elder sibling, instead of wrecking up the place.

In the case of this episode, as well as the series overall, if this argument between Kakeru and Naho never occurred, things would have grown rather stale and it give off the feeling that things were being dragged out for the sake of making this longer, much like how the Fairy Dance arc of Sword Art Online felt like it was just tacked on to have enough content for its run.

However, because they did end up fighting, it allowed Naho's friends to show that they were there for her, even spurring her on to patch things up, which allows the series to have an emotionally powerful ending.

Now, I cannot say that the way this series will end will have the kinds of emotional feels that seem to be present from what I could dig up of how the manga ends, but if TMS continues to do things right from this point forward, this may actually end up being one of the best series of the year.

For now, seeing this just makes me much more interested in finding out how things will end, hoping that Naho can succeed in preventing the death of somebody she considers a friend, and giving a person a reason to continue on with a series is definitely something that should be done.

Outside of those things, I cannot think of anything else that I particularly liked.

Because the episode created conflict from elements that were already introduced in the series and that the comedic moments did not feel out-of-place, as well as the fact that an argument that occurs helps to make the series not feel like it is being dragged on, this episode ended up being one of the best I have seen.

Takako & Azusa future selves talking

Although I liked the episode, there are some issues.

However, aside from things too minor to talk about, nothing really bugged me too much.

As a result, I will have to say that there was nothing worth mentioning.

Considering that TMS did a lot right in this episode, especially making it so that things do not feel like they are being dragged out, this was definitely worth watching.

I only recommend this to fans of Orange, because this is the antepenultimate episode and they are the only ones that will be able to enjoy this.

What are your thoughts on Orange episode 11? Did you like it or hate it? Was there something that you liked or hated that went unmentioned? Feel free to comment.

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Copyright © 2015 Bryce Campbell. All Rights Reserved.