Ano Hana – Episodes 1 – 3

This is my final “catch up” show: Ano Hi Mita Hana no Namae o Bokutachi wa Mada Shiranai (or Ano Hana for short). When I asked for suggestions for shows to watch from the spring, this was one of the ones suggested, plus it looked like about the most promising show when I looked at season previews anyway.  I have some good hopes for this show so I hope it doesn’t disappoint.

Yes! We're all totally not over our friend's accidental death!

Yes! We're all totally not over our friend's accidental death!

So we have Menma, who died somehow accidentally several years previous to the series, who has apparently reappeared to Jintan, who was the person in their friend group closest to her, in order to have a wish of hers granted.  Naturally no one can remember what the wish is, and so starts the search for whatever she wanted.  Of course, Jinta doesn’t believe Menma is even there, but despite that, her memory somehow gets the rest of their group, who had all largely gone their own way over the years, to get back together.

I guess the hardest thing for me to swallow is how readily people seem to accept the Menma thing.  Maybe they don’t really believe she’s there, but find getting together for her sake is a way to commemorate their feelings for her, and for Jinta and Naruko especially, their guilt over feeling responsible for what happened to her.

I wonder if we’ll ever get a fuller idea of what, exactly, happened to Menma. All we know is that she chased after Jinta one day after he ran away after Naruko asked if he loved Menma, and then we saw her shoe in a creek, but that was it, Presumably she fell or drowned or something but we don’t really know.  As for Menma’s wish, all we really know is that she says it requires everyone getting back together, but that’s about it.  I don’t know if it means Jinta having to confess his feelings about her in front of everybody or what will fulfill Menma’s wish.

Also, we also seem to have “Menma’s ghost” going around which both Poppo and Yukiatsu have seen now, though why there is a ghost separate from the Menma Jinta sees, we don’t really know yet. In any case, Jinta’s Menma seems to be able to interact with objects which, you would think, they would have thought of having her do in order to prove to the others that she’s there by now.

This definitely has the potential to be a good series, though I’m not really sure in what direction it will go.  I thought a good portion of the series would be gathering everybody together, but now they’ve done that after just 3 episodes. I’m not really sure what they’ll spend the last 8 episodes on.