Making an anime based off a visual novel is never easy especially one aimed at a specific target audience, or in this case, the female market. There could be mistakes through adaption, the delivering of the characters, or in other cases, not sticking with the story. There is much to be said regarding what can make an extravagant series out of a visual novel these days especially from a series a game that is not too well known compared to some of the more popular series like FSN, Higurashi, etc. Hiiro no Kakera (also known as Scarlet Fragment) details the story of a young girl named Tamaki who had a peaceful life till one day she learns about the true extents of her origin and family. Expect the unexpected, right? But more than that, there are five other gorgeous guys that accompanies her and protects Tamaki as she is the next Tamayori-hime, after her grandmother. The story goes on from there where her original peaceful life gets thrown into turmoil when other malevolent forces are after her and the secrets that lies with her past. (Btw, I haven’t watched the second season yet.)
I am reminded of the Anime called “Asura Cryin’”. The first season came out in April of 2009 and the second came out in October of 2009. The first season of the Anime actually shares a lot of the problems that “Hiiro No Kakera” happens to have. One of the problems happens to be the fact there were signs that the series had potential but the whole first season falls flat. in the first episode you are introduced to a heroine who is mistaken for being clumsy but really isn’t. She’s weak, but that is because she’s never had training for her abilities like the five males. One would think there would be great potential but what I was looking for didn’t show up until the last episode. Instead, we were treated to episode after episode of her having angst fits about how she can’t do anything.
I’ll be honest here. This story has not impressed me as much as I originally hoped. At first glance, it seems to contain a lot of action packed fighting just based on the OP. However, the story flows a bit slow and replaced with rather heavy dialogue relating to protection, secrets, and artifacts. Speaking of artifacts, it is obvious that others would also want them. With one fragile girl and five handsome looking guys looking out for her, this story may seem compelling to fans who are into bachelors and that sort of genre. Unfortunately for me though, that’s not my case. If there is one thing out there about this anime that impressed me so far, it would be the artwork. When it comes to artwork for this series, it is done quite beautifully and probably one of the more stand out points. As much as I despise Studio Deen for some of their previous work, the art is beautiful and more realistic.
There seems to be something I’m missing here. The main girl gets off a bus and gets protected by a hot guy. But, what kind of connections do they have? Oh but not only that, there are four (well, one later in the story) guys that just pops out into the story with little background so far. As for our antagonists of the story, they are all represented by German numbers. Now, is that significant? The fact that they are after a certain object seems to put them on the bad side of the “good guys” so far. With little to no background of what the characters are like so far in the series, my point of characters stand out as a disappointment.
Surprisingly, the sound of this series is fluid and occasionally catchy. The OP song “Nee” performed by Fujita Maiko is relaxing and who doesn’t want to listen to some relaxing music when waking up on Sundays? The story is slow and dialogue heavy is not helping by the fact of the almost obscure character backgrounds. However, if you’re the target of the demographic that the series is being aimed at, then the bulls eye might be hit. The various endings of nearly episode (that I found somewhat disturbing after awhile) may be pleasing to the eyes of a female viewer. Additionally, the fact that the series is labeled with “romance” might bring out your “inner fangirl”. Unfortunately, it’s not working for me (WTH even though I’m a female I don’t get the feels so meh).