Saekano: How to Raise a Boring Girlfriend is adapted from the light novels series of the same name written by Fumiaki Maruto. Also spawning a few manga series and finally an anime it’s interesting to note that Fumiaki Maruto has been the writer of all incarnations. As something we don’t see too often it’s a great move by A1 Pictures to have the original author writing for the anime adaptation.
Upon clicking the play button I was immediately awed by the beautiful animation quality that A1 Pictures have managed to achieve, pulling us into a scene that wouldn’t be amiss in one of Makoto Shinkai’s great works. While not quite up to that level of visual mastery, it definitely exceeded my expectations coming into the show.
The opening made no illusion as to what genre this show resides in, showering us with a cast of pretty girls along with our solo male Tomoya Aki. While it’s cliché in a harem anime when you have the main character, a huge otaku, friends with all the best looking girls in school. It’s not common however to have said best looking girls, also huge otaku, meet Eriri Spencer Sawamura a beautiful and popular half Japanese half English student by day but by night she’s “Egoistic-Lily” a doujinshi manga illustrator. Next up is Utaha Kasumigaoka held in awe by the entire student body, she’s beautiful and intelligent, outside of school she is also a novelist using the name Utako Kasumi and author of Koisuru Metronome that has sold over 500,000 copies. Wanting to make a Visual Novel based on a scenario that happen to during spring vacation, Tomoya Aki tries to enlist the help of these 3D girls that he has deemed trouble.
Visually the shows has exceeded expectations, the imitation camera movements are a joy to watch it’s nice to see when a studio experiments a little and not just conform to the bog standard animation style. In the director’s chair we have Kanta Kamei who previously directed Usagi Drop a wonderful show and a personal favourite. Adaptation-wise we should be in rather safe hands with the original author of the light novel and manga, Fumiaki Maruto, also penning this series. As for seiyuu we have Matsuoka Yoshitsugu (Sora, No Game No Life) and Kayano Ai (Meiko Honma, AnoHana).
Albeit quick there was a little nod to previous A1 Pictures series such as Sword Art Online and Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae wo Bokutachi wa Mada Shiranai which was a nice touch for fans of those series. This series is currently available to stream via Crunchyroll .