To live a life without regrets is the ultimate dream, isn’t it?
Well what if you could prevent your past self from making the same mistakes you did? Could you find a way to ensure the future changes for the better?
That’s essentially the theme behind Orange, a thirteen episode long anime series that recently released on DVD and Blu-Ray.
The anime series follows Naho Takamiya, who, on her first day of school receives a strange letter from her future self. The letter details Naho’s life as one filled with regret. The adult Naho implores her younger self to correct the mistakes made, including keeping a close watch on Kakeru Naruse.
Unlike many other slice of life, high school drama anime series, this one holds a special place in my heart. This is partly due to the brilliant way in which the anime manages to tug at your heart strings, making you long for friendships like the one Naho has, as well as the ability to knowingly make decisions that will lead to a bright future.
The narrative is gut-wrenching, emotionally charged and filled with a story that will have you reaching for the tissue box. The closeness of each character and the way in which the anime deals with heavy-going subject matter such as suicide, is brilliant. Not only did I feel a kinship with Naho, but I also understood the turmoil that Kakeru went through, the desperation to ‘escape’ despite the smile on his face.
This beautifully written anime is one of those that forces you to think about mental health and just how important having a support network is. However, it isn’t just the narrative that’s stunning.
The art style used in this series is gentle and soft, giving off a ‘homely’ feel. It also adds an air of warmth when it comes to the characters.
Of course, the characters themselves play an important role in carrying the anime, each one unique in their own way. Having very different personalities could have caused a rift between the group of friends but in Orange, these traits strengthen their bond as a group.
Orange is not a long anime series but manages to portray a sizable amount depth that will leave you feeling satisfied at the end. Just remember to have tissues on hand.