“A Lull in the Sea” is a show about prejudice, misunderstanding culture, and racism, for a little bit. It takes place in a fantasy world where two species coexist. They are human and subspecies of the ocean. In a long history, they live together. Just a life and complex conflicts separated between them. Now, they live apart into land and sea. They alienate each other and live peacefully without disturbing each other. A group of childhood friends from the sea, living in an underwater village, transferring to the land of school after their middle school closed down. They must be forced above the surface. Here, a dilemma arises where it’s not that easy to adapt. Starting from to keep themselves not to dry out and other things, they also have to resist their anger from various kinds of pressure and discrimination.
In my opinion, rarely an anime take on a concept like this. Besides the strong yet complex drama, personally, this is an unpredictable story of two species that encourage each other. So many anime use the same theme as racism. However, they only try to get into from the story itself. Not by showing directly its concept. “Nagi-Asu” is also a romance anime done right. An unpredictable and not cheesy impression produces a truly complex story. Plots are rooted in the characters from each role, it’s not a stage for the main character. However, all these characters are the main stories of the plots.
As the first character focused, Hikari Sakishima is the leader at first glance. Maybe, the first arc is a story for himself, especially his relationship with his childhood friend, his family, and his discriminatory problems. However, the second arc suddenly focused on the developmental matters of each character. It’s a little bit too hard to explain it without telling a minor spoiler. In essence, all of the characters had a particular relationship line. So many lines connecting to each other. Until finally, this is an extraordinary piece of anime.
How could you have got no wrong when you thought, “he will be with her” or “she will reject him”? There are many specific detailed personalities and information behind that. You guessed it, the way it was told was the best. A blend of realism, contemporary and fantasy as well. You might predict that Manaka would be with Tsumugu or Chisaki would be with Kaname. But, just wait for the second arc. It’s just getting complex, complex, and complex but it’s also getting better, better, and better.
Absolutely gorgeous yet stunning when it comes to visuals. “Nagi-Asu” is simply a phenomenon of a world full of fantasy. It just caught me in the first minutes of the first episode. They put so much detail in their facial expressions, so many details on the environments and background, and a breathtaking-hold. The underwater world is the best of all. The combination of sea animals with perfect lighting through the surface, it’s a reflection of hope at the times. One of the best P.A. Works‘ project, personally, besides “Shirobako” which is one of my favorite of all times. The animation quality is just over-the-top. Its impressions are so neutral and solid that “Nagi-Asu” cannot really be oversaturated.
The voice actings put a lot of feeling which cannot be underestimated. They fill each other very well. Probably the best from all is Kana Hanazawa because everything Hanazawa cast is always great and her characters always memorable. Kayano Ai as Chisaki stands as its own uniqueness but I kind of like Megumi Han as Hikari. The soundtrack is the best too but it’s so hard to explain that. The music impresses like a sea of voice but it’s pretty quiet. Sometimes, the sound has an ambient theme but more to catchy and emotional music. The choir at the ceremony scene was pretty good as well. The theme songs are as memorable as the soundtrack. Various kinds of featured artists in this anime including Nagi Yanagi, Ray, DEPAPEPE, Saigenji, and others.
This show has a lot of effort put in place, making it one of the greatest drama anime I’ve ever seen. There is a lot of emotional and melancholy feeling in this anime. The case that “Nagi-Asu” is not your typical romance genre, it has something that really puts you more into its world, approaches, themes, and complexity. This anime doesn’t disappear from the theme below, including what they want to say. Most anime seems to override it where they always want something more to the marketing and producer. But “Nagi-Asu” is a spectacle more than entertainment. It’s a combination of such elements of realism and fantasy.
“Nagi-Asu: A Lull in the Sea” is a silent feeling of the beautiful world of characters, romance, and its theme. This anime has its own style in telling it. Tropes separated from a stereotypical and an anime that raises a subject matter. It’s a high-production value to say at least. Characters that act a lot and complexity gives rise to many lines and bonds. It’s an unusual world of quite. It’s more than romance, more than fantasy, more than drama. Probably, one of the greatest gems not like the other.