[Anime] Amaama to Inazuma (Sweetness and Lightning) Preview

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Sweetness and Lightning

Summary

Inuzuka is a teacher who lost his wife 6 months ago which leaves him to raise his daughter, Tsumugi. The one thing he struggles with is cooking, so he relies on frozen foods and convenient store bento boxes  to keep them fed. Most nights they don’t even eat dinner together – she settles in front of the TV watching her favorite Magi-Girl program and he works grading papers and preparing class work til he falls asleep. His daughter doesn’t complain until one day they meet a girl crying in the park at the Sakura viewing. The girl confesses that she isn’t crying because she is lonely, but because the onigiri that her mother made is just so delicious tasting. Fascinated by the fact that food can taste good enough to make you cry, Tsumugi asks her father to write a letter to her mother asking her to make them some delicious meat. Not knowing how to respond, he rushes out of the house with her in tow to the restaurant owned by the girl from the park’s mother. At the restaurant, Inuzuka realizes that the girl (Kotori) attends the same school he teaches at. As Inuzuka watches his daughter enjoying the delicious rice dinner, he tears up and vows to cook and eat dinner with his daughter every night. He thanks Kotori for the delicious dinner and in return she requests that they make and eat dinner together.

Sweetness & Lightning is based on a manga series and can be found streaming on Crunchyroll, Mondays at 1:35 PM EST.

My Reaction

From the moment I laid eyes on Tsumugi and heard her speak I was hooked. She reminds me of Naru in Barakamon. Actually the whole episode has a very Barakamon vibe to it. I knew from the OP song to the ED song that this was a series that would capture my heart. Single dad anime stories really seem to touch me and they always have a way of brightening my day.

The light warmheartedness of the episode made it fun, from the way Tsumugi wakes her dad up in the morning to the way she helps him clean the house (riding around on the vacuum cleaner or watching the clothes go around in the dryer), you will smile and laugh. She is the kind of child everyone wishes they had. Inuzuka is the doting father who is trying to take on the role of both parents. From taking his daughter to school, cleaning the house, and knowing the theme song to her favorite show, you know he will do anything to make her happy. Kotori is the complete opposite of them both, she seems to be harboring some loneliness in her life. From her being alone at the park to her being alone at the restaurant, she is hiding something and is looking for some way to fill that gap.

The body language of all the characters are well done as they help to convey the emotions of the character. The OP and the ED are quite fitting and have a nice vibe to them. Group all this with the muted colors and the artistic effort of the great animation and this was a really great first episode. I am hoping that the series continues to maintain its sweet, family vibe and not move into some odd direction. Overall I give this a 5 out of 5!

About Tiffany "CeissaDesiste" Toms
Long time female gamer who has been playing all genres since the Atari 2600 and Commodore 64 days. Freelance Graphic Artist, Web Designer, Beta Tester, and studied one year of Game Design. I play games on PC, PS4, PS3, Wii, Wii U, Nintendo Switch, 3DS, Xbox 360, PSVita, and Android. Freelance Writer, Reviewer, and News Editor/Asst. Director for Anjel Syndicate since the site launched! Part time employee of a major video game retailer.