Anime Meta-Review


Tokimeki Memorial


By Date




Title Info

  • seen: 1 of 2
  • type: OAV
  • grade: flawed
  • made: 1999
  • Review created: Recently, but I didn't record the date.
  • mod: none

I was really enthusiastic to see this, being quite a fan of shoujo-ish material and having heard a lot about the name. Sadly having seen it i'm not exactly sure what to make of it. To begin with there largely isn't a story. The setting is a high school at the end of the year, where another group of students prepares to leave the controlled environment and spread out to other places. We largely follow a single girl, although we flit over various other characters, as she considers whether or not she has found friendship or love at school. The question seemingly whether to keep the memory of friendship, or risk taking the relationship to a formal level that will continue after school is done.

At least that's how I read it. I quite like this sort of thing, it's a time that has the potential to be both promising and melancholy at once. Likewise i'm a sucker for watching shoujo full of cute young girls playing their roles in exploring the questions of relationships and life. Thus I was suprised by how ambivalent I was to this. The problem is that this is derived from a computer dating game (non hentai I believe) and as such has a quite massive cast. There's also some suggestions of weirdness (such as flashes of a mecha, strange companion animals and other such). Likewise there's suggestions of existing characters and relationships. However you'll get little of this substance from the fragmented, disconnected and ambiguous experience this show provides. Some of the individual scenes are nice enough, although you tend to be distracted while trying to work out who is who, but they don't seem to link together or actually go anywhere. The lead character, the only one we get significant time with, is the most fully developed...but since we don't actually know who it is she is considering the story loses a lot of its impact. I certainly hope fans of the game and character's enjoyed this, but if you know nothing of the heritage you'll possibly find this as intriguing and frustrating as I did.

The animation is nice enough, although not fantastic for an OAV. The colors are soft, looking very water-colorish, and spend a suprising amount of time in the dark and cool color range. The line work is fairly free and expressive but occasionally looks a bit messy. Action is largely absent. The girls are attractive enough, although even the rainbow colored hair isn't quite enough to avoid occassional confusion. The guys seem largely absent, or as charicatures when they exist. The dialog has its moments of meaning, and poignancy, but far too often it just feels confusing or pointless. The events and sequences are very disconnected, which sadly matches the story far too well.

None of the sites I source from has a review of this anime. I went hunting and it became obvious that the fan base for the anime is largely the fan base of the game. It also suggested that while only one OAV has been released (in 1999) there will be more. Possibly another has been released but not fan-subbed as yet. I certainly hope so, i'd hate to leave the title with such mixed feelings.


Words by Andrew Shelton, Web by Ticti, Last Compile: Wed Aug 5 12:39:26 WST 2009