So you thought we were done reviewing the summer season? Think again! For one final show, the staff has gathered together to give various opinions on what clearly had the most diverse appeal to all of our differing tastes: Sweetness and Lightning.
Japesland: It’s great.
Medieval Otaku: The best things about Sweetness and Lightning are the very likable characters and the conflict. The iyashikei genre is notorious for avoiding conflict or occasions of suffering, but this anime includes enough to engross the viewer in the rather simple and episodic plots. The comedy hits some of the right marks. If I was more interested in cooking, I’d probably have rated it higher than 6/10.
Kaze: An adorable kid, a loving father, Hayamin, and cooking. What more could I ask for in an anime? It’s simple, heart warming, and makes me hungry (that last part might be a bad thing). I mean, I could keep talking but it would really just be me repeating the lines Tsumugi and Hayamin are adorable please cook me food.
Samuru: Tsumugi is too cute. The real-life scenarios of the show combined with interesting cooking lessons was the cherry on top for me. Each episode was a delight to watch and experience!
stardf29: The parenthood aspect of this show is one of the most well-done, as this show actually portrays various conflicts that the father Kouhei encounters with his daughter, Tsumugi. Tsumugi may be extremely cute and overall well-behaved, but where other anime kids may come off as being too angelic or exaggeratedly bratty, Tsumugi does act up in believable ways, making you feel for both her and for her father who is trying his best to deal with her.
Of course, there is also the food aspect, which has been present in a lot of shows lately, and as a fan of Gourmet Girl Graffiti,Food Wars, and various other shows (including non-anime cooking shows), I definitely consider the food to be another part of its appeal. It may not have the grandeur of Food Wars or the sensuous reactions of other shows, but it more than makes up with its presentation of simple yet delicious-looking dishes, prefaced with preparation instructions so that viewers can also take a crack at making the food in question. This down-to-earth approach fits the show well and complements the moments of character interaction within the show, making for a final dish that has all the warmth of a home-cooked meal.
MRNewman: (8/10) I have four children, three little girls and one little boy. I have also had, at various points, had each of them climb on top of me, smile at me in such a way that my heart melts, been nervous about their wellbeing, and have wanted to do what I could to show them I love them. In each episode, as I see Kohei alone raising Tsumugi and dealing with the death of his wife, I am flooded with memory after memory of my children. Watching Kohei interact with his daughter reminds me of various interactions I’ve had with my own children. For me, it was great and the cuteness was overwhelming. What I was afraid of, however, was Kohei’s relationship with Kotori. With Kohei being a teacher and Kotori being a high school student, I was afraid we were going to get the “teacher-student romance” trope. I was very pleased to see that did not happen. Despite hints at it, in the end Kohei remained focused on his daughter – as a dutiful father should be. In the end, that’s what I wanted out of this show and I was glad to see it.
Emdaisy1: I wasn’t even going to watch this anime… but then a bunch of the other staff along with the rest of the internet kept talking about how good it was, so I caved. Much to my surprise I loved it! I honestly can’t totally put my finger on why, especially seeing as I’m really not someone who loves cooking since I don’t have much practice with it. I can chalk it up to a few contrinuting factors I am sure about, though. I loved the portrayal of the father-daughter relationship between Kouhei and Tsumugi. It was done honestly, showing that there were misunderstandings and it wasn’t always sunshine and bubbles between the two. I also loved the somewhat predictable plot/story of the episodes: an opening focusing on the Inuzukas, the school hall window meeting or text to plan their next cooking endeavour, then cooking at Kotori’s. Basically the characters are loveable, Tsumugi is adorable, the show gives newbie cookers like me hope, and there’s absolutely no offensive content. Amaama to Inazuma (Sweetness and Lightning) is a perfect warm-fuzzies/pick-me-up/feel-good show and I fully recommend it to everyone!
FINAL SCORE: Tsumugi/10