Sora no Method Discussion

Discussion for the Sora no Method anime. Please tag spoilers with the [spoiler] tag and (if possible) state what episode it is from.

Sora no Method is the first anime to be produced by Studio 3Hz. Directed by Masayuki Sakoi, and written by Naoki Hisaya (who worked on Moon, ONE and Kanon.) The music is directed by Jin Aketagawa and composed by Tatsuya Kato. Character design is by QP:flapper

This first episode was a very good establishing episode. While it’s not too clear what the anime will focus on, the overall setting has been brought to attention and all the characters have been highlighted and given some personality already.
This first episode’s promise is similar to things like AnoHana and Tari Tari. Whether it lives up to that promise or not is something we’ll find out in a matter of time.

Since we don’t have too much story going on yet, I’d like to talk about the animation. For a new studio, it is beautifully animated. There are some off moments (transitions to/from rotoscoping methinks, along with your average bad frames every once in a while) but overall it’s a very good looking first episode. It’s worth noting that Studio 3Hz is partially made up of people who left [Kinema Citrus][6], a studio who helped animate things like Hanasaku Iroha and NagiAsu. They definitely take some inspiration from that when animating.
One of the most interesting things about the animation style can be seen in the opening. There is a very short clip of Nonoka with her mother, and then a flash-forward.


From this screencap you can clearly see that the scene is fairly well lit. The clever thing about this is that the rest of the anime (so far) has been very colorful. This means that they can create darker scenes without obscuring any details like many other anime do. It’s pretty atmospheric.
[The ED is beautiful too.][7]

A quick talk about the voice actors. Noel is voiced by a rookie VA named Inori Minase. She’s showing up a bit this year, and I think she deserves it.
My favorite character, Shione (AKA, headphones girl) is voiced by Mikako Komatsu, the same person who voiced NagiAsu best girl Miuna. She also did Tsugumi from Nisekoi and Neko from K.

Aki Toyosaki voices the slow blond Yuzuki. If you don’t know who Toyosaki is, she voiced Yui in K-On, Momo in To Love-Ru, Chitose in YuruYuri, and a whole bunch of characters that are well known.

The banner girl Koharu is voiced by another upcoming VA, Haruka Yoshimura. She’s only done a few roles, Kouko from Akuma no Riddle and Ema from Shirobako account for half of her voice roles.

Our only male lead character Sōta is voiced by Kaito Ishikawa. Tsugumi from NagiAsu, Mitsuo from Golden Time, and Ledo from Gargantia.

Finally Nonoka is voiced by Shiina Natsukawa, yet another rookie voice actor. Kanna from Witchcraft Works and Anna from iM@S are the only other named characters she has voiced. Kanna and Anna… Huh.

So yeah, a strange mix of experienced VAs and promising new kids.
[1]: http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/people.php?id=45252
[2]: http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/people.php?id=62511
[3]: http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/people.php?id=8466
[4]: http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/people.php?id=64842
[5]: http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/people.php?id=87333
[6]: http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/company.php?id=7744
[7]: http://a.pomf.se/yatzmi.webm

3 Likes

Guess this is going to be like a replacement for Nagi no Asukara. The plot didn’t impress me much but the animation is waaaay better than I expected; that ED is one of the best that I’ve ever seen.

Really liking it so far! But maybe it’s because I am biased to drama and the first episode already had a wee bit of it :wink:

Also, I never realized that this was a totally new studio. They’re doing really great work! Love both the art style and the animation so far.

Also, re: the first episode, somehow, it seems so familiar to other series that are in this “range” (i.e. slice-of-life anime with a hint of supernatural that will make you cry). Just the kind of series that I like, though, so I can’t complain.

One thing that I expect is that it will either go the route of Ano Hana where Noel will help all the other characters release their pent-up emotion or Kanon where Noel (and other characters) are part of a tragic series-of-events that will somehow see a resolution in the end. Since it is Naoki Hisaya after all, I am leaning towards the Kanon route.

That headphones girl seems really popular haha. My favorite character so far is Koharu. いらっしゃいませ~!

Currently, there’s exactly one thing that concerns me about this series: How old are the characters here? And while we’re at it, what’s the series’ target audience?
To me, the main cast looks like a bunch of grade schoolers. This kind of age gap between characters and viewers makes it difficult to the later to relate to the former (and it kinda feels weird for a grown guy to be watching little girls. What would the neighbors say? ^^’ ).

Judging from how they behave, I’d guess they were around 13 years old. Nonoka can cook, Koharu works, Yuzuki goes shopping on her own, and Shione goes home on her own.
Noel looks younger but I’m sure there’ll be a reason for that.

The target audience of the series is probably people who like slice-of-life drama, and coming of age stories… which is a lot of the anime audience nowadays. It shouldn’t be difficult to relate to them unless you lost all the memories of your childhood, and your neighbors will think any anime girl is a grade schooler anyway. It’s very clearly an innocent story, but if you want to see yourself as someone who watches little girls, then fine~ :stuck_out_tongue:
Age is almost as meaningless as the opinions of random people. Don’t let stuff like that ruin an anime for you.

Or maybe I should stop watching anime with my windows open and speakers on full volume… The neighbors thing was obviously a joke -_-

Age means everything if you watch stuff like slice-of-life drama. If the age gap is too big, you can’t relate to the characters. For example, to a kid, a whole world collapses when its favorite teddy bear gets ripped apart. A grown-up would just shrug and forget about it within 60 seconds. And if you can’t relate to the characters, you obviously can’t enjoy the drama since you won’t even take it seriously.

If the characters are really around 13, it’s good news, because they looked like they’re not even 10 to me. And I can’t possibly be the only guy who feels both uncomfortable and disinterested when watching little girls not even half his age.

My guess is more like 15, and Nonoka left that town when she was 5, so perhaps she was away for 10 years? They really do look more like middle schoolers to me (at least, anime middle schoolers)

And I dunno, those were the estimated ages for the characters in Nagi no Asukara and I had absolutely no problem relating to them. And I think you should be worrying about what your neighbors are saying about you watching “chinese cartoons” in general :stuck_out_tongue:

Really, that bad? Because they really do not look that young to me. Noel, of course, does, but everyone else, no.

Yeah, I think they look around the Nagi no Asukara age. They already show a decent amount of independence.
We’ll probably find out in the next episode though~

No boy huh. Skip :volcano:
Really, I like love story or love-related things :wink:

Sōta is male, and it looks like him and Koharu hit it off well.

1 Like

That’s the issue I’m talking about. They do show behavior of being around middle school age if you pay attention, but they don’t LOOK IT.
Let’s just compare directly.

Here we have Nonoka from SnM
And here we have the grade schooler Miuna from NagiAsu
To draw an comparison, here’s Miuna, Hikari and Manaka in one picture

And the thing is, to me, Nonoka looks to be the same age as Miuna, and NOT Manaka or Hikari (Hikari is 14 btw). Are my eyes weird?

[quote=“Pepe, post:8, topic:598”]
And I think you should be worrying about what your neighbors are saying about you watching “chinese cartoons” in general[/quote]

nah, I’m more worried about people pretending like parts of my post didn’t exist when they talk to me -_-,
like this one:

I’d say Miuna look only a year or two older than the flashback SnM kids.
SnM takes place 7 years after that, while Miuna doesn’t become Hikari’s age until 5 years after.
The animation styles are different though. SnM looks a lot simpler and cuter, whereas there was a very clear age difference between characters in NagiAsu. Nevertheless, I don’t think the main characters look 10 years old apart from Noel, and in some scenes, Nonoka.

I apologize, because I only saw that comment after I posted and didn’t bother to edit. Sorry about that.
But to be fair, that comment of mine was also a joke :wink:

Yeah I think it’s more of a perspective thing. Nonoka does look a bit younger than Manaka, but IMO definitely older than Miuna in your comparison. But all the other characters in SnM (Noel excluded) look to be Manaka and Hikari’s age, IMO. Just that we all have a different perspective, I guess.

Yo no hotlinking. Wow I haven’t seen that term being used in years. What with cloud computing, people started caring less and less about bandwidth haha

They look very young to me. I was a bit taken aback by how mature the girls were acting, and I realised they’re a bit older than they look. Anime is weird like that :stuck_out_tongue:

I’m really digging it so far. The animation is very pretty, and the music is wonderful! I hope the story can continue delivering some good drama as it progresses.

1 Like

I’m so used to Kazamatsuri auto-uploading all the images @.@

It’s not just the kids. I was really taken aback when Nonoka’s dad first spoke. Doesn’t look as old as he is meant to be.

NAOKI HISAYA.

Well first off I’m something of a firm believer of ‘don’t put fucking drama in episode one unless it’s very light’ so the picture frame shit ruffled me a little.
Course I am having trouble figuring out what could have been done otherwise, since the other friends either seem like they’d not even remember, or would cause a scene, thus drama. And 13 episodes certainly doesn’t help.
So while I don’t like it, it gets a pass for now and is welcome to justify it later, I expect later drams to have more backing to them, it’s getting no sympathy from me if it continues to drop drambombs without reason.

Other than that, ticks all the other boxes, nice atmosphere, very pretty, Naoki Hisaya, decent premise, Noel being cute as fuq etc

No no I see the AnoHana route more.
A touch of Kanon likely, dead mom and miracles and all that.
But headphones girl clearly needs a big fat dose of friendship and isn’t going to eat it easily.

Makes me think back to the Planetarian thread.
Age is just a number! I’ve connected with characters that arn’t even human, if a 13 year old comes off with views and actions I can agree with an enjoy, why would I view her any different to a male of my age?

She’s either dead or not human, that one was really clear, honestly I expected dead until she mentioned wish granting.

Open up a little then.

Naoki Hisaya only works in 7 years, it was stated to be 7 years.

But there literally is one.
That said, I do prefer a bit of balance. Even excluding Noel, 4/1 is a tad off, those are the sort of numbers you want in a shitty harem. 3/2 + Noel would have been more natural.

I can cherry pick biased shots that prove my point better too. Here’s Nonoka looking much older:

The artstyle certainly is rather soft and cutesy, which will have the effect of making them look young though.

2 Likes

It was indeed a pretty solid first episode.

Noel is definitely some sort of supernatural entity. An alien from the Saucer, maybe. I dunno. She was ‘summoned’ by the group as kids, that’s for sure.

Nothing really else to comment on, I’m so late to this thread you guys have covered everything Ep 1 has to offer.

That second episode was bad and I am firmly disappointed.

I don’t think there was anything bad about it.
It set up a main plot point, hinted at some interesting things like Nonoka’s promises, and the townspeople’s ability to ignore/forget things so easily that conspiracy-nut girl is suspicious of it.
Animation is still great, music works well, characters are all fairly interesting so far, and there’s a lot of potential going by what we already know.

It wasn’t great; there wasn’t a big amazing moment, but it’s a very good second episode.