Mariya IseKonomi KoharaShiori MikamiAkira Sekine
Akebi's Sailor Uniform
Also known as: Akebi-chan no Sailor-fuku
Medium: TV, series
Year: 2022
Director: Miyuki Kuroki
Writer: Rino Yamazaki
Original creator: Hiro
Actor: Akari Kito, Akira Sekine, Azusa Tadokoro, Haruka Shiraishi, Kaede Hondo, Konomi Kohara, Manatsu Murakami, Mariya Ise, Miku Ito, Mitsuho Kambe, Momo Asakura, Shion Wakayama, Shiori Mikami, Shizuka Ishigami, Sora Amamiya, Yui Ishikawa
Keywords: anime
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: 12 episodes
Website category: Anime 2022
Review date: 18 December 2023
Akebi chan no sailor fuku
It's adorable. It's a slice-of-life anime that doesn't really have a storyline and probably isn't marathonable, but it's rather good at doing interesting character work in any given episode. Besides, Akebi herself is lovely. (The kanji in her name mean "tomorrow".)
The first episode left me unsure where the series was going. The answer to that was "nowhere, really, but Akebi's going to make lots of friends and inspire them in little ways". She's about to start middle school, but she's never met anyone her own age before. She lives in an area that's been clobbered so hard by Japanese rural depopulation that she was the only student in her entire elementary school. (It'll close when her little sister graduates.) As a result, she's a bit eccentric. Not crazy wacky or anything, but she's missing a few minor norms of civilised behaviour and she's prone to use her sister as a yardstick for expected human responses.
Oh, and she lives in an extraordinary house (for Japan). You'd swear it was made of gingerbread by Hansel and Gretel.
She's capable of scatterbrained (occasionally to a worrying degree), but we know she'll be fine because she's so enthusiastic and friendly. When meeting her new classmates, she takes notes because making new friends is something she's never experienced before. She loves all activities. She'll attempt anything. This doesn't always meet with success, but it never gets her down.
The art's a bit odd. The animation was nominated for Crunchyroll's annual anime awards, but they're reproducing a manga art style that looks peculiar when rendered into motion so beautifully and fluidly. It took me a good few episodes to get used to those eyes. Other people have observed that the series has a fetish for feet... but I'm afraid that personally I didn't notice. Feet are inoffensive. There are worse fetishes in anime. This certainly isn't a fanservice show and I'd show it to my children (who'd probably enjoy it).
This show's just nice. I couldn't call it important, but it's funny and heartwarming. Watch an episode or two and see what you think. I was particularly impressed by the season finale, which does interesting things with montages and a non-narrative episode construction. (Everything that happens at the school festival is being framed within Akebi's stage dance. The volleyball actually merges into it. I don't think I'd ever seen music and animation interleaved like that before... and the results are lovely and oddly emotional.)
Charming and offbeat.