First Impressions: Non Non Biyori

Non Non Biyori First Impressions

Manga Adaptation by Silverlink
Simulcast on Crunchyroll

Premise: A city girl from Tokyo moves out to the quiet, peaceful life in the country. She meets her four new classmates of varying ages, who also make up the ENTIRE student body.

This is four girls at a bus stop

Jel’s Verdict: True Slice of Life

There’s something charming about Non Non Biyori’s complete lack of gimmickry. There’s no super powers, over the top parodies, or skeevy fan service, just a group of girls living their daily lives in the country. The directing in particular is lovely, with long gaps of silence and slow pans across the countryside that really convey a calm atmosphere. It’s pretty remarkable how much emotion they can invoke with no dialogue at all, particularly when Hotarun climbs the breezy hill near the end of the episode and appreciates the beauty she is surrounded by.

The strange thing is, as much as I enjoyed this episode, I don’t think I ever want to watch Non Non Biyori again. It was charming and cute but I think more than one episode of this would be dreadfully boring. I could definitely see it having a few really sweet, heartfelt moments here and there, but I don’t think I have the time or patience to get there.

This is a little girl trying to whistle for her pet raccoon

Lifesong’s Verdict: Cute but Boring

Not much to say about this show as not much happens. It reminds me of growing up as a home-schooled kid, that probably isn’t a good thing. Add in an 8 hour prayer session with one of my Mormon friends and it might be surreal at least, but this is Japan so that doesn’t happen. It did have a few awww moments, but with so many other great shows to watch in this season, I can’t imagine coming back to this one.

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