First Impressions: Tasogare Otome x Amnesia Episode 1 Synopsis and Review

And finally, I get to review my most anticipated anime of the season! Tasogare Otome x Amnesia is about the mystery of Yuuko, a ghost girl who lost her memories and wanders around the school she died in. You could say she haunts the school, but really she’s just playing around. Her actions are passed off as paranormal activity because no one can see her, except for the story’s main character Niiya Teiichi and Kanoe Kirie a girl with actual blood relations to Yuuko. The plot revolves around Teiichi and Yuuko’s investigations to discover Yuuko’s past.

Synopsis:

The show starts with Okonogi Momoe, a member of the Paranormal Investigations Club, writing on the club diary.

She gets suspicious when her mug seemingly moves to the opposite side of the table.

Her keychain drops and makes a sound which Momoe notces. She freaks out thinking a poltergiest is in the room.

Just then, Teiichi enters the room.

Momoe, who knows Teiichi has a sixth sense, tells him of her poltergiest suspicions.

Teiichi tells her to relax, with cat ears? (Momoe doesn’t notice)

Momoe gets suspicious and thinks Teiichi is lying to her.

“I’m not lying!” Teiichi blurts out, as if answering Momoe’s thoughts, prompting Momoe to freak out even more.

Teiichi puts his hand on her head and tells her to give it a rest.

Teiichi seems to answer more of Momoe’s thoughts. So she asks in her head, “The origin of Mesopotamian civilization?”

Teiichi just says he has no idea then Kirie interrupts Momoe’s “interrogation”.

Kirie (and her bare legs) sits down and tells Teiichi to stop flirting openly.

Momoe thinks Kirie is referring to her and apologizes, only to end up facing this:

Kirie blames Teiichi.

They move on to formal club activities. Teiichi gets a call from the absent club president. She informs him that she caught a cold and can’t come.

They start their first club activity: investigating a haunted food cart elevator.

The elevator suddenly opens and Teiichi gets pushed inside. Scene cuts.

A replay of the earlier scene, only with Yuuko visible.

Yuuko was actually responsible for Momoe’s mug moving.

Momoe can’t see Yuuko. Yuuko play’s with Momoe’s keychain infront of her but she doesn’t see it. Yuuko then drops the keychain, giving up on trying to get Momoe’s attention.

Yuuko plays with Teiichi’s hair.

Apparently, Teiichi wasn’t answering Momoe’s thoughts. He was talking to Yuuko.

Kirie (and her bare legs) enters the room and tells Teiichi and Yuuko to stop flirting.

Yuuko pulls on Kirie’s face as Momoe faces her.

Yuuko was actually the “club president” who Teiichi was calling on the phone.

It was Yuuko who activated the elevator. And pushed Teiichi.

So they so she could be alone with him.

Because he’s the only man who can see her thus only man who can love her.

Teiichi holds Yuuko.

In the wrong place.

They move on to their next investigation, which is a rumor about Yuuko’s grave. Momoe points to a stone under a tree with Yuuko’s name on it.

Yuuko says she has never seen this place before and kicks the stone, causing Momoe to freak out because she doesn’t see Yuuko.

Momoe runs, and Kirie goes after her. Yuuko takes advantage of their absence to bring Teiichi on top of the hill to a view of the entire school.

As Teiichi walks back, he finds a bell that was under the stone Yuuko kicked.

And a glimpse of Yuuko’s “shadow”.

Review:

I thought Sankarea was good, Tasogare Otome x Amnesia was even better! This episode was quite original with Yuuko’s invisible antics. The first episode actualy felt like an “episode 0” which means it has little to do with the main plot of the show. While this would sound like a waste of an episode, it actually became an ideal time to introduce the characters, and there weren’t introduced like “This is Teiichi-kun, he is my sempai in club and he could see ghosts.” No, the characters were defined through their actions. Momoe is the easily excitable one. Teiichi is your typical good-natured hero that everyone loves. Yuuko is the playful ghost that affectionately clings on to Teiichi, and Kirie is a no-nonsense, serious girl who is annoyed by Yuuko’s antics. They may not be the most original bunch of characters, but their personality contrasts makes for some good comedy. The comedy of the show, I didn’t think it would be this strong. I thought this would have been the one aspect Sankarea would have over TOxA, but the latter managed to make me laugh quite a lot! The problem with the comedy was that it mostly came from Momoe being afraid of everything, which gets annoyingly redundant. In the manga, Momoe was probably the least problematic of the main characters, but she was barely the source of the manga’s comedy. In the anime, she’s a walking joke. I fear she has been reduced to the role of joke character. C’mon, Chihiro of Sankarea is hard to take seriously but he doesn’t rely on constantly using the same gimmick to be funny. He is naturally easy to laugh at. This show also had some really top quality animation. It has the dark, gloomy atmosphere fitting for it’s mystery element. but the last scene with Yuuko and Teiichi on top of the hill was the highlight of this episode’s visual quality. It was like something out of a movie. I also admire the character designs, the girls weren’t your typical bug-eyed, baby-faced “moe blobs”. You’d think Yuuko would be more often be called beautiful instead of cute, but she has her moments, which actually takes nothing away from her character because she really is a playful, mishchievous spirit. This episode did little to shape the plot, since it focused more on the characters and the comedy. Playtime’s over though, and it’s time to get serious. Episode 2 better be more relevant to the story or nobody is going to watch this for the mystery and romance, which is supposed to be this anime’s strong point.

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