Kokoro connect is a 17 episode long anime which fits into the genres of: supernatural, romance, shonen, highschool & comedy. It follows the lives of 5 individuals during their first year of highschool after joining and forming the CRC (Cultural Research Club) but are then randomly targeted by a supernatural being known as “heartseed” who springs different phenomena upon the group of friends. These phenomena provokes different behaviours and emotional characteristics from the characters that progressively get more complex and complicated as the series goes on.
Where It Excels:
Firstly, despite how short the anime is in comparison to quite a lot of anime in the same genres it shows detailed character motivations with areas which the personalities shine extremely well. Additionally, despite having the few main characters and a few side characters dashed on the side they all seem to interact well with one-another in terms of attitudes and motives all while not revealing all of their cards on the table at every given moment that allows for the development of decent story lines mixed with the slow-burn of the character’s backstories and true natures being flushed out as well. Characters within the show are definitely the selling point for it due to its focus being heavily on them with a solid execution of this makes it an enjoyable experience for a first viewing & would arguably make a second viewing interesting by knowing the true motivations to stimulate the thinking of “that makes sense of them to do that”. An example of one of these characters (without plot spoilers) would be Inaba because she fulfils the stereotype of tsundere but adds and interesting and refreshing take to it with her interactions later on being very pleasant and fun to watch.
Possible Areas For Improvement:
One of the few critiques that could be raised would possibly be the last arch of the anime. This isn’t to say the ending is bad in fact quite the opposite, but the last arch flips a character motivation which is pre-established in a fashion which feels slightly artificial due to it being dealt with in the previous arch. Yet within the span of an episode or so the believed conclusion suddenly becomes undone as though it were a loose knot and then becomes the whole focus of the arch until the anime’s conclusion of around 4-5 episodes. If it could be phrased as this, the sudden focus on what was a previously wrapped up story-line is a little bit annoying because it could have been foreshadowed in a better way maybe from the beginning rather than from jumping from a previous ending to the beginning of the next arch.
Overall, its a short and sweet anime which touches upon the mental development of people during their childhoods and adolescence in a fine way. The inclusion of the romance stories are decent and provide some good moments of hilarity but also gripping moments filled with heart-tugging emotion but manages to achieve this all within such a short time-frame effectively using decent characters that are given life through flushing out their backstories and decisions throughout.