Bunny Drop Review: A Crash Course in Parenting

noitamina-usagi-drop

Bunny Drop – うさぎドロップ

Main Cast

Ayu Matsuura as Rin Kaga

Hiroshi Tsuchida as Daikichi Kawachi

Atsuko Mine as Sachiko Kawachi

Kana Ueda as Haruko Maeda

Maaya Sakamoto as Masako Yoshii

Masakazu Itou as Kenji Kawachi

Nanako Sudō as Reina Maeda

Noa Sakai as Kōki Nitani

Sayaka Ohara as Kōki’s Mom

Yumi Uchiyama as Kazumi Kawachi

Information

Age: All Ages (Aimed at Josei)

Theme: Slice of life, family, single parenting, adoption

Opening Sequence: Sweet Drops by PUFFY

Ending Sequence: High High High by Kasarinchu

Number of Episodes: 11 + 4 short OVAs

Review

A quaint and lovable story that I think charms you and gives you a heart warming feeling at the end of each episode. It’s a story about a thirty year old single man named Daikichi Kawachi. The story begins with the death of his grandfather and everyone finds out about his secret of keeping an illegitimate six year old daughter named Rin Kaga. No one in the family wants the responsibility of looking after her so Daikichi, disappointed by everyone, decides to take her into his care and raise her. And we begin a trip into the world of parenthood as Daikichi dives head first into everything a parent must deal with to raise Rin. oyatsu-usagi-drop-04-1280x720-x264-aac-7e7d36f322-41-45The anime covers the first 4 volumes of the manga, out of 9. Daikichi deals with many real life parent problems such as enrolling into school, dealing with illness, not being able to work late as he needs to be home etc and meets many parents on the way and learns more.

An interesting thing about the voice actors I want to point out is that Ayu Matsuura who voices Rin is only 11 years old as I’m writing this. This surprised me as I was expecting a ‘normal’ voice actor to play her voice. However that would be going with the status quo and all those young girls we see voiced by voice actors tend to sound loli and act it too. I suppose going for a genuine young voice worked very well as it escaped the common trappings of going down the loli route. It made her sound authentic and cute, but in a way that’s very different to the usual loli voices. It’s a little difficult to explain, but if you ever watch it, I think you’ll see what I mean. Of course the way she acts and the way she’s drawn contributes too, but I think the voice is one of, if not the main factor.

usagi-drop-06-38Animation studio was Production I.G. quite renowned I’m sure you all know who they are. If not I’ll just list a few of their more prominent works or were involved in the animation of: Ghost in the Shell; Blood C; Eden of the East; Blood+; Guilty Crown etc, so yeah, they’re not bad at all. I’ve heard many comparing Bunny Drop’s animation to watercolour paintings, and I have to agree. It is aesthetically pleasing, not in your face or warped and that’s exactly what this anime needs. It didn’t need spectacular art, it needed something people can relax to.

The story was light-hearted, it didn’t really get serious at any point and throughout it kept a relaxed and fun tone. One thing I loved about the series was how everyone develops. Of course Rin grows up every day and opens up more and more, but Daikichi also learns more and becomes a better parent by the end of the series. Their developments are the best parts of the series, I love following a series and seeing real development in characters. This is probably the best parenting related anime I’ve seen, though that said, I don’t actually remember many. Off the top of my head I can think of Tokyo Godfathers and Clannad After Story. It’s a very rare theme and difficult to get right. This series did it well and I loved it when Kouki came into the series. You always hear about childhood friends in animes and it was good to throw a childhood friend in there so that he and Rin can grow together. This also fleshes out Daikichi’s childish characteristics. And with that the family feel to the series grows and it’s a warming sensation by the end.

I think the only serious thing in the story is when Daikichi tries to track down Rin’s mother as he can’t forgive her. However the story doesn’t focus too much onto that and I think the story itself wants people to forgive her. I’m not sure if I can forgive something like that, and whilst I dislike her real mother, I can see that she had her own reasons and I can safely say that Rin is much better off now.

As I mentioned before, the anime shows the first 4 volumes of the manga, 7 of which are released in the UK currently if you’re interested. It follows the manga very closely, in fact I can’t remember seeing many differences. I think there were some relating to Daikichi’s dialogue where they missed out some or changed, but I don’t remember them being that important. So obviously if you enjoyed the manga, definitely have a look at this.

Usagi Drop - 06 - Large 02Both theme music are fittingly charming to listen to and also fittingly meaningful. They both possess that ‘feel good’ factor and cheers you up. The animations to go with them are also fittingly beautiful. Childish, carefree and full of colour is the best way I can describe it.

By now I think you get the gist of what the show’s about and have an idea of if you want to watch it or not. If you’re looking for a nice relaxing show or if you’re interested in parenting and like the lure of the overall theme I suggest having a look. It’s a nice series if you’re not up for anything serious after a hard day’s work for example. Although this series will probably rule out a huge group of people, there’s no action or fighting, obviously no fan-service or anything of the sort and although the show is funny, there’s no real sense of comedy about it. It sounds bland when I put it that way, but it really isn’t, it’s very colourful and it’s easy how the two main characters lead you into their world. I put all ages down as the age recommendation as I think it’s really an anime that can be watched and enjoyed by everyone. If you’re very young you’ll like Rin, if you’re older perhaps you’ll sympathise with Daikichi, if you’re in the middle then you might be wondering what parenting’s like and this is an interesting and amusing insight. So I say give it a shot, who knows, maybe you’ll learn a thing or two.

I’m hoping that there’s a second season to this to finish off the manga, however it might lose some audience as there are big changes and a huge time skip when it gets to volume 5. I won’t spoil anything but I will say that volume 5 skips 10 years ahead and also it starts to concentrate on Rin a lot more rather than Daikichi.

[review_3.5]

What do you think? Leave a comment.

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10 Comments

  1. WillStocks

    Overall would you argue that the manga is better than the anime?

  2. battledash

    Such a good anime, I enjoyed it so much and glad it only did 4 volumes cause the manga ended kinda weird and a lot of people may not like the taboo of the manga ending.

    • Lucretia Arkwright

      Yeah… I ‘accidently’ read spoilers to the ending of the manga and no wish I hadn’t, however, I’m not going to comment on it until I’ve read it. May be taboo but still might’ve done it in a good way.

  3. Thank you for this recommendation. I may give it a run with my kids!

  4. Shame it ended somewhat in the middle of the story!

    • Lucretia Arkwright

      Yeah, but if you look at the manga it’s a good place to end as after this there’s a 10 year skip. Would’ve felt more of a cliff hanger if they left it after the 10 year skip. I think there’s a chance they’ll do the second season as the manga’s released in the west, will depend on how well it does.

  5. Yohannes
    0

    Thank you Lucretia for sharing this information. The “bunny drop” anime did highlight beautiful regular activities that missed out.
    I think this is a must-watch list!

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