Striking The Right Note: Tsuritama

Every now and then, you see an OP that just gets it all right. Not in the usual sense, either, but in a purely emotional manner, a way that just speaks to your heart and soul. A way that says, “Hey, come on and spend some time with me.”

This weeks offering is one of those. It isn’t that the OP has some great artistic merit, or even spoils some aspect of the show, really. It does, but not in the way you’d think. It’s that it just shows you the kind of fun, the joy, you’re going to get watching this one.

Tsuritama is a 2012, 12 episode original series from A-1 Pictures, proving two things at once. The first being that an anime doesn’t need a source material to be excellent. The second, A-1 is a pretty awesome studio.

I’ll have more to say about A-1 one of these days.

Tsuritama follows the life of Yuki Sanada, a high school student who, due to his grandmother’s job, has moved around a lot all of his life. Because of this, he’s never been able to form friendships, and has developed a severe form of social anxiety, which the show accurately depicts as feeling like he’s drowning. When he has an anxiety attack, his face tends to screw up into a demonic visage that makes it even harder for him to form friendships, as most people think he’s angry.

Everything changes when his grandmother’s job takes her to the small island town of Enoshima, where a fellow student named Haru barges into Yuki’s life, proclaiming himself an alien who needs Yuki’s help with fishing in order to save the world.

He’s not joking, either. Haru really is an alien, and he really does need Yuki to help him learn how to fish in order to save the human race. Because Tsuritama is a science fiction series about fly flying.

It’s also crazy good. I highly recommend it for not just the amazingly beautiful animation, but the incredibly well put together visuals of an anxiety attack, and just what you’ll learn about fly fishing, since A-1 brought in an actual master fisherman to help them make that part as accurate as possible. There’s a lot more to it than I ever thought.

As for the OP, the song is Tsurezure Monochrome, from band Fujifabric, and it’s just a damn catchy piece of music. It fits this show to so perfectly, you’d think it was written just for it.

The visuals are where it really shines, however. From the animation, which is exactly what you’ll see for the entire 12 episodes, to the constant lures floating in the background. Lures play a major part in the plot, so having them pepper everything is just fitting. As is the dance you see the cast doing all the way through. That’s the Enoshima Dance, and it too plays a major role in the story.

Best of all, the OP sells just how important the relationship between Yuki, Haru, Natsuki and Akira really is. These four really do form such a believable bond of friendship through the simplest of things, fishing together.

It also shows you Tapioca, Akira’s duck, who is a god damn hero.

For just the straight up feel good aspect, this show, and this OP, strike the right note in the most wonderful of ways.

One little thing, however. Sony is kind of a bitch, so to get the full effect of the OP, you’ll need to try and sync up the video from Youtube, and the music, from Soundcloud. Sorry about that, but I really did want to feature this one enough to do this. This show got to me, and the OP really is even more beautiful and sweet once you’ve seen the series, so bear with the bit of effort to check it out properly.


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