The “Quartet” Practiced in the Park

May 30th, 2014 in Anime, General Reviews, Yozakura Quartet by

yozakura-quartet

Welcome to Sakurashin, a town where humans and youkai co-exist in peace and harmony. The premise of “Yozakura Quartet” is how to maintain the peace with such a divergent amount of folks.

The ‘quartet’ portion of the title involves the four people (and that is good, as a quartet IS four people) who run an office called Hiizumi Life Counseling Office, where their job is to help and protect the townspeople, regardless of their background or origin. The four folks are:

Hime Yarizakura, (dead center with that massive scarf). Although sixteen, she is the mayor of this town, which she inherited from her grandmother, and has supernatural powers. She is loved by all (so you KNOW it’s a fantasy. Who really loves their elected officials?)

Akina Hiizumi (the guy in the black shirt to Hime’s right). He is eighteen and is the only human in this office. He can do ‘tuning’, an ability that can send back the youkai to their world and cut off their connection to the human world.

Ao Nanami (gray hair to Hime’s left). She is fifteen and is called ‘Satellite’, as she can use her ears to find people and read thoughts. She also reads announcements over the city-wide PA system.

Kotoha Isone (the fleshy one to Akina’s right). She is sixteen, but was possessed by a youkai, so she is a rare 50-50 mix. She is a Language User, so if she speaks it, there it is!

The problem is the Seven Pillars. These are massive structure that exist both in the Demon World and the Human World and anchor both dimensions, but there is something afoot, as there are all kinds of strangeness going on that bespeaks of darker times ahead. The show details how these four (and their ardent supporters) will do whatever it takes to protect this city. And there are a lot of weird and quirky people, both human and youkai, that populate this town.

However there are very evil forces out there, determined that human and youkai cannot, nay, will not, live together and it would be best if the worlds were sent spiraling into chaos and destruction. And if that can be sped along, so much the better.

The series looks at how Hime tries her best to lead this town and follow in her grandmother’s shoes while trying to combat events and forces that her grandmother never had to contend with. This show follows a standard approach: the first four episodes show how the town works, the next four set up the problem and the last four compound and conclude the problem. It’s just that the ‘problems’ never seemed like problems, more like annoyances, akin to shutting down the George Washington Bridge for four days. Nothing can’t be overcome, no one can remain unmoved, no one should be discarded.

It’s a nice little show, but it really didn’t conclude; we just reached a point where we can have another season and pretend to resolve all issues in that offering as well, but won’t. It started off well, but faded in the stretch, especially when the Evil Arc was put into effect. More like a revenge duet than anything else, it still seemed pasted on than something more organic. Oh, well.
On a scale of 1 to 10:

Artwork 8 (A notch above standard anime)
Plot 7 (Something done before)
Pacing 7 (Gets a bit too wordy at the end)
Effectiveness 6 (Set-ups not used well)
Conclusion 7 (It reaches a ‘coupler point’, but doesn’t really end)
Fan Service 3 (A similar show would be “Wedding Peach”)

Overall 7 (Could have set things up better)

And remember, it’s first run until you’ve seen it. Time to be tuned.