Anime Review: "Urara Meirochou"

Urara Meirochou is a series I picked up entirely because Kayano Ai voices one of the characters, and not even one of the four main girls at that, so it’s not been a priority on my ptw list for a really long time, and I just got around to finishing it. I think it’s a bit underrated, in the sense that I rarely (that is to say never), hear it brought up in conversation or recommended, but looking at the score I gave it, and the average score on MAL, I think it’s actual rating is pretty accurate.

It’s good.

Not a whole lot more to be said…

But I’ll say it anyway.

This series is a very strange mix of genres: despite being undeniably a cute girls doing cute things (CGDCT) show, it also shares lots of trope elements with shonen series. Power of friendship, hard work, practice, etc. It’s a supernatural, fantasy, slice-of-life, comedy, and apparently it’s in the seinen category, despite being about a bunch of fifteen year old girls. It also features a good deal of very weird fan service, focusing on stomachs… it’s oddly simple to explain, and I’ll do that in a bit.

Nothing worth commenting about any of the technical elements, they’re all just what you’d expect from a show like this, so I’ll just skip that and get right into the setting, plot, characters, story and what not.

It’s an alternate earth, and the series is set in a location called “Labyrinth Town” where witches, mystics, and fortune tellers are common place. Visually, the city is reminiscent of a fantastic take on the transitional period between Meiji and Taisho. Without much (or any) technology to speak of though, the series really does bring the fantastic charm, almost reminiscent of isekai.

The main character, Chiya, is like a moe version of Tarzan, but can speak human language for some reason. She has a thing for belly rubs, which she uses to communicate with the forest animals, which is where the fan service comes in – she uses the same technique on all the other ladies she runs into, which brings quite a bit of confused-echi to the series (the kind of echi where you’re questioning wether this is totally harmless, or actually really weirdly fetishistic, and since you’ve gotta question that, it probably means someone out there finds this arousing…). She goes on a quest to find her mother, which brings her to Labyrinth town, where she meets three other girls – they all then set out on a path of training, overcoming their own weaknesses in order to become “Urara”, this world’s version of fortune tellers.

From there, the series becomes an episodic show where each episode the girls face various trials, working together to grow.

This show shines in its characters, which are all very cute, kawaii, moe, and what not. They’re fun, unique and well voice acted (in Japanese at least, no idea if there’s a dub or not). Each girl has her own issues, problems, and fears that they have to overcome on the path to greatness. Their chemistry is good, and the balance between them is swell.

The main problem I have with the show is that it’s honestly just very forgettable. I have trouble remembering what any of the individual episodes were about, and just vaguely recall the setting and plot details (I had to consult the show summary to figure out what the town was called because it completely left my brain). It all really seems to be kind of unimportant, unfortunately, since as far as activities go, fortune telling is definitely more of an exotic one, and the setting itself is very pretty and seems to be full of potential for world building. There were certainly some very memorable moments, and impactful scenes, but on an episode-to-episode basis, I can’t really remember when things happened.

And that’s not really a good thing.

However, I’d recommend this anime if you’re looking for something cute to watch that doesn’t require you to think very much. Just sit back, relax, and enjoy. And try not to dwell too much about the belly rubs.

Watch it on Hidive

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