What’s the show? Mitsuboshi Colors (2018).
Oh…kay, so uhh, what’s the show about? It’s about kids being kids.
And what’s that mean? It’s just about the most realistic depiction of kids I’ve ever seen, not just in anime but in media fullstop. I can’t stress, how unlike other anime portrayals of children this is, it’s like someone managed to distil everything that’s quintessential about childhood, such as insufferably inane conversations, potty humour, insane imagination, brilliant non sequitur’s and a callous disregard for authority, purpose and rationality. And while it is delightfully innocent, it’s never precocious or grating. Seriously, I can’t speak highly enough about this show.
Wow, okay, so sounds pretty damn interesting then. It’s not even the best show of the 2018 Winter anime season, but I’d almost recommend it over everything else just because of how refreshing an experience it was.
Well before we go too deep into ‘recommendations’ and what not, who are our protagonists? ‘Colors’, assemble! There’s Yui (brunette), the polite and timid leader of the group who is exceedingly innocent and therefore gullible. Then there’s Sat-chan (blonde), the groups resident anarchist, filled with energy and an infectious laugh. And let’s not forget Kotoha (blue), the laid back, video game loving girl with a dark streak.
That was quick. Listen, I’m not going to pretend that there’s character development or any depth or complexity to these characters, it’s about grade school kids goofing off in and around Ueno, Japan. They run around creating mischief, saying the ‘darndest’ things and occasionally try and kill Saito, a police officer who patrols Ueno Park.
I beg your pardon?! Well not really, every show has to have a ‘bad guy’ and Saito is it, because he’s such a stick in the mud, everybody else entertains ‘Colors’, enabling their childish rampage across Ueno, but not Saito, he takes great pleasure in spoiling their fun!
It kind of sounds like a kids show? It’s interesting you say that because it’s absolutely not, I mean sure kids can watch it, but I think kids would get bored before adults would because there’s something delightfully nostalgic about it even if your childhood was nothing like theirs.
Well it sounds like your nothing but praise for this show? Well… I wouldn’t go that far…
Oh? Listen, I do certainly want everyone to watch this show, but I’m not going to pretend like it’s perfect in every way.
Go on… It’s unique charms are in part, a reason it won’t be considered a classic anytime soon.
How do you mean? It perfectly captures the essence of childhood, and well, I don’t know if you know this but children can kind of be annoying, like really annoying.
I had thought as much but figured you were going to say something on it. Every positive word I said about the show is a hairsbreadth from being turned around into a negative depending on your mood or tolerance or whether you have kids of your own and how annoying they are on a daily basis. (Or at least I presume)
So it has problems? Yes, of course, it has pacing issues, it repeats itself on many occasions, and there can be long gaps between laughs. But that said…
But what? There’s a couple of episodes early on and also the beginning of the final episode that offer some of the biggest and most joyous laughs I’ve had in any anime for a long time. It may be sporadic, but this show can be so very funny.
Well this has been an odd one, I feel like every positive word you say about the show comes with a caveat. Yeah maybe, but here’s the deal, you probably already know if you want to watch this show, people have pretty clear ideas about what they like and don’t like.
Anything else to add? The voice actress for Sat-chan is phenomenal here, I don’t know how she manages to sound so child-like and not at all in the way other anime and even the other girls in the show sound, it’s actually kind of frightening how authentic she is. It alone is worth watching the show, or at least a couple of episodes to witness.
Final score and recommendation then? Put simply, Mitsuboshi Colors is simultaneously a litmus test for how much childish inanity you can handle and the single best representation of elementary aged fun and innocence committed to screen. This show is most definitely not poop, 87 out of 100.