Amanchu! follows the story of Futuba Ooki, or Teko if you will. Teko is a shy girl who just moved in to a new city. With the help of Pikari, the local super energetic girl, we are given a riveting tale of adventure as Teko overcomes her fear of new experiences. … Okay, I’ll admit the use of the word “riveting” was a bit sarcastic.
Amanchu! is a splice of life anime, which delivers exactly what you’d expect from such. A splice of life. I only picked this show up because for some reason I was expecting something akin to Free! except with diving instead of competitive swimming. I don’t know WHY I’d think diving would be used as a competitive theme but I did. Just to clarify, when I say diving I mean the kind where you put on gear to go deep into the sea to look at fish and, not the kind where you jump off a diving board. The only thing that Amanchu! has in common with Free! is that it revolves around water. Splish splash. At that, Amanchu! doesn’t even give you as much diving action as you might first expect. That darn poster and OP I’m telling you.
With that said, what was surprising was the fact that this water themed anime had a noticeable lack of fan service. You’d think a show revolving around water would go all out with fan-service, but Amanchu! stays on focus with the story it tells. That is to say, a story of friendship, and opening up to new experiences. Both of which are good things. And both of which bored me to death. But that’s my own fault, as this isn’t a show that appeals to me. So why did I watch it in its entirety? No idea.
Maybe I stayed on board because of Pikari? Pikari was an amusing character to watch. She’s full of energy, and quite peculiar. From walking around tooting a whistle, to taking the train back and forth just to witness 1 second of a glorious view of flowers, Pikari quickly sells herself as the most interesting (weird) character of Amanchu!’s cast. Followed by her of course is Teko, who is basically Pikari’s complete opposite, and as such is very shy, quiet, and not very energetic. As you can imagine, through the course of the show Teko changes quite a bit from her interactions with Pikari and the Ninomiya siblings who we meet around episode 5. Her growth as a character isn’t to drastic, and because of such ends up being quite believable. If there was anything in Amanchu! that I liked, was seeing her character grow, slowly but surely.
Amanchu!, is a rather slow paced, relaxing anime that I think people who enjoy slower shows would like. Assuming of course they don’t mind main characters who are very shy. Even with Teko being shy, Amanchu! does occasionally branch off from focusing on Teko, to show us more of her friends, and to some extent the teacher. These episodes serve to give us a better look at the character it’s showcasing. These are more or less side stories that in small ways contribute to the “main” story about Teko opening up and learning how to dive.
As a whole, Amanchu! is a pretty looking show, with a positive message within it. It has amusing characters, and has a nice peaceful feel to it, that will either leave you feeling relaxed or bored out of your mind. If you you like splice of life, or want something cute and heartwarming to watch, Amanchu! just might be for you.