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I’m pretty late to the game on this series, but I finally decided to give it a shot. The focus on piano competitions reminds me a lot of Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso, but the tone seems significantly lighter. I’d say the atmosphere and the characters remind me a lot of the competition you’d find in “sports-ish” series.
The main characters seem fairly standard, but I think they work. I like the idea of Kai being pushed into taking the piano seriously by a rival. He and Shuuhei have a pretty pleasant relationship despite their rivalry, and I’m actually kinda rooting for Shuuhei to find his own way to get ahead. It would be refreshing if he was more than just the diligent scholar type.
The first episode actually put me off with the piano in the forest. I like where the series goes after the first episode, but the seemingly supernatural aspect of the piano really stood out like a sore thumb for me. I’m quite glad that the series has shifted towards treating that piano as a symbolic tool.
Moving forward to the first competition itself, I quite liked how the competition showcased the three different characters with different stories playing the same piece. Especially with Kai, I could really hear the change in his style when he started playing himself.
This kind of piano snob drama was really predictable. It kinda bums me out, but I guess it’s meant to set the stage for Kai’s eventual growth. I’m pretty curious to see where this series goes after putting it off for so long.