Sell Me in 20 Minutes: Sakura Trick and Hozuki no Reitetsu

A lot of stuff came out Thursday, and I don’t have a ton of time, so I watched the first 4 minutes of everything and decided to forego Pupa, Strange+, Mahou Sensou, and Z/X Ignition for varying degrees of spot check failure. The other two new shows did impress, and will be joining my weekly slate alongside The Show That Deserves The Jormungand Soundtrack and Takahiro Omori Unchained.

Sakura Trick was a show I actually had decent expectations for going in, just based on a trailer that was worth a damn and director (Ken’ichi Ishikura) who seemed to come from a similar lineage to Oonuma Shin (read: a lot of backup roles on Studio Shaft shows). It didn’t disappoint and came out swinging, with lots of little visual mixups to enhance the cute plus funny atmosphere of the show. To boot, the OP was really catchy, and is probably my favorite for this Winter thus far. And the main couple kissed in the first episode, which is rare in general these days, yuri or not. I’m in for the ride unless the next two episodes are all somehow really vanilla bean.

Hozuki no Reitetsu had more than a little bit of juice in its premise, one of the  hell-is-a-corporate-enterprise variety, and the situations are up to snuff. But the dialogue is a little too straightforward; too often it was pointing out points of comedy that would have been funnier left unstated. It wasn’t hugely obnoxious the way some odd comment/retort comedies can be, and seemed to generally have an excellent feel for the mundane, especially in the all-smalltalk second half. As a bonus, the main character packs a deep voice that helps the whole package feel fresh. This one’s a keeper, and it’s getting at least three more episodes.

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