Orange – Episodes 1-3

Orange has held firm for three great episodes now, though I’m hearing the production is actually going through some behind-the-scenes disasters. Fortunately, Orange already isn’t really a show I watch for the grace of its character animation – the director has always been a bit of a weird fit, but the fundamentals of his idiosyncratic style actually mesh pretty well with Orange’s equally unusual style of dialogue and storytelling. Barring some kind of serious rally from Battery, Orange is the current reigning prestige drama, and it’s bearing that crown with relative grace. I demand a steady diet of at least one of these every single season.

You can check out my full review over at ANN, or my episode three notes below.


Orange isn’t hiding any cards or pulling any punches. There’s a very clear conclusion you’re supposed to draw from the combination of the letter and the future scenes, and so the story is more about both “how do these people reach this point” and “how little even knowledge of the future can change our identities”

May 1st – the diary tells her to convince Kakeru to actually join the soccer club

The show’s incidental conversations are so much more lifelike than most shows – the dialogue actually feels like the kind of offhand nonsense high school friends really would say, laughing at the smallest things

But Kakeru already has decided to join! Choices add up

Another good undercurrent of the series – we may not think much of our small actions, but they can have a big positive impact on the people around us. Kindness echoes

A small flashback. Definitely need to talk about how the show makes its drawn-out pacing into something of a strength

Sometimes the show barely even emphasizes the dialogue to the point where you can follow the conversation. And many conversations between easy friends are like that – more about a warm and familiar atmosphere than actually exchanging specific thoughts

They keep offhandedly emphasizing how well Kakeru can read Naho’s feelings

Oh no, an upperclassman love rival for Naho!

Ueda is her name

Aw dang, Ueda confesses and they start to date. But of course, Naho’s current actions have likely ended that path

“The future can be changed. I’m sure it’s an easy thing to do”

Lots of these oddly quick cuts

Naho’s feelings are very simple, routine, and understandable

The two perspectives – how we look back on our lives as an accumulation of small mistakes, and how we’re incapable of growing unless we keep making them

“The orange juice tasted sweet, sour, and sorrowful.” Aw dang title drop

Kakeru’s letter only has words for his friends, nothing about his own future

“Why, Kakeru?”

The time capsule is the letter from the past to the future, matching the other letter

One thought on “Orange – Episodes 1-3

  1. Hey bobduh, been a big fan of this website and used it to read analysis of my favorite shows (ex. Oregairu) for a while now. I was wondering, you had high praise for both seasons of Oregairu and from what I heard, this show is similarly excellent and touches on many of the same themes. Would this show be recommendable in that regard to Oregairu fans, or is this something better viewed on its own merits?

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