Glasslip Review

chickens

I didn’t hate it.

I actually didn’t even dislike it. I actually even liked it! Yes, let it be known that I *liked* Glasslip. Not enough to ever watch it again, not enough to have it ever come up in conversation when a person is asking for recommendations, but I liked it decently. I seem to be in a bit of a minority on that, though. I think that what made Glasslip work for me was that it was exactly what I was wanting to watch anyway – I didn’t click with Your Lie in April at all, which I was hoping to have as a melodramatic teen romance show, but I picked this up again (I hated the first episode when I saw it last summer) and found that that was pretty much what this was.

I’m genuinely baffled by how much people apparently hated this show. I tried it again, truly, based on the fact that people said it was a horrible show. I love watching horrible shows! The more I watch anime, the more love really terrible shows (although not ones that are terribly boring). The idea that one’s taste gets refined over time, well, I don’t really trust that – I think we just get better at being able to determine what shows are accepted as “good” versus which ones we are supposed to deem “bad”. But I’ve written a whole post about that before and I’m not really interested in rehashing; suffice to say, I sat down to watch Glasslip because I was hoping for a trainwreck. Despite all the shots of trains, though, there was no trainwreck to be had.

I’d be lying if I said the lack of trainwreck didn’t disappoint me on some level. Bros, you made this sound epic! How could you mislead me so?

I wonder if I liked this show for the reasons that the usual P.A. Works-lovers hated it. I do not do well with P.A. Works; I tend to avoid them like the plague. I managed to enjoy Another after I hated the first episode, then went back after an attitude adjustment (as horror, it sucks), and was able to like it. Eccentric Family I finished but in the final quarter of the show I felt like I’d awoken from a daze and realized that it wasn’t as good as I thought it was (and my estimation of the show has dropped off sharply since it ended). With Glasslip, I have a sneaking suspicion that the usual fans of the studio didn’t like it because it was pretty light on the melodrama. For a show about a bunch of teens entangled in a few love triangles/polygons, this was extremely mellow.

It should be said, though, that the second-to-last episode is where the show goes completely sideways before more or less righting itself in the final episode It isn’t exactly bad, it just doesn’t make much sense. There’s a subplot about two of the kids having sort of supernatural powers that really doesn’t get enough development to gel with the rest of the show, and its easy to just sort of let it slide by until episode twelve is completely centered around it.

Some things did bother me about the show, so it wasn’t all roses. The way the rest of the cast reacts, or, really, doesn’t react, to the fact that one of girls has the hots for her stepbrother just felt weird. Even in a group of friends like these kids have, even if no one is going to say anything to her face, its weird when a person has a crush on a stepsibling. If the crush had pre-existed their parents getting married, well, that’s a sticky situation, but its implied that their parents have been married for a while and that the crush didn’t develop until after, so its bizarre how everyone is just apparently cool with it. I also found a lot of the characters initially off-putting since in the first few episodes everyone is overprotective of Touko (spoiler: everyone is also in love with her) and over-reacts about a lot of things. That it went from that to everyone being low-key also felt strange, although I much preferred it once people settled in and stopped being so histrionic. I even ended up basically liking all the characters!

So, Glasslip was okay. It’s also only thirteen episodes long, a its all on Crunchyroll and not behind the paywall, so its an easy show to suggest to someone to watch if they feel like a pretty lightweight story about teens having some mild angst, hanging out, and having crushes on each other in the summer. And then there are the magnificently beplumed chickens in it. These chickens are completely 10/10 would watch again territory. Maybe P.A. Works could make a show just about chickens? I would watch that.

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3 Responses to Glasslip Review

  1. Artemis says:

    I haven’t watched this so I have no opinion on the show itself, except to say that it just doesn’t look like my thing. P.A works doesn’t exactly have a great track record with me, and the times where I’m actually in the mood for a melodramatic teen romance are very few and far between. That said, I’m not surprised that a lot of people exaggerated about how awful this series is. People can generally spot a truly terrible show a mile away, and consequently either don’t watch it or don’t take it even a bit seriously. As a result, I think its frequently shows that are simply average, or a step below average, that cop most of the flak for not measuring up to their supposed potential.

  2. gendomike says:

    I really wanted to like Glasslip. I’m actually a fan of PA Works when they do their thing well, like in Tari Tari (which shares a screenwriter with this show) and the better parts of Hanasaku Iroha, and I like gentle nostalgia and pretty backgrounds and wistful romance as much as any lovelorn otaku. The problem I think is that both the writing, the character development, and scene progressions were so disjointed–the reactions that people had to events, the dialogue, and the whole “fragments of the future” concept simply did not follow from one thing to another smoothly. Glasslip really showed me that even seemingly carefree, directionless “slice of life” type shows need structure and at least minimal sensible progression to cast its spell. Too frequently the spell was broken.

    But, ah, the OP song, the insert song by Chou Chou. Those two songs express the mood that the show wanted to convey so much better than the show itself. I still listen to them on repeat to this day.

  3. gendomike says:

    BTW if you want chickens watch their first major work, True Tears. It is much more melodramatic than Glasslip, though. Being a work by Mari Okada, that is to be expected 🙂

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