Fall Anime Review: In Search of the Lost Future

My review of the fall's anime continues with Ushinawareta Mirai wo Motomete, aka In Search of the Lost Future. 

Ushinawareta Mirai wo Motomete (In Search of the Lost Future)
If you remember from first impression of Ushinawareta Mirai wo Motomete (In Search of the Lost Future), it was the one anime that I was on the borderline about whether or not to continue watching it, and in the end, deciding to stay with the series was the right decision.
In Search of the Lost Future follows a high school astronomy club as they live out their everyday lives. In the first episode, the series shows various events that the group did in the school year with it ending with the heroine, Kaori, confessing her love to the main protagonist, Sou Akiyama. After giving an indecisive answer, Kaori walks home, where something happens, which ends with her in a coma with no sign of recovery. 
In episode two, the series appears to reset time going back to the beginning of the first episode, except there is one difference; Sou finds a mysterious girl, Yui Furukawa, passed out in a room. Where did she come from? Why did time reset? And why is Yui here? Those are the questions that arise, and are eventually answered in the series.
In the following 11 episodes, the series follows the astronomy club going through their typical day to day life as the mystery behind Yui is slowly revealed. 
If there is one genre that will make me watch something regardless of how poorly a story starts out, it has to be the Time-travel genre. From Doctor Who to Steins;Gate, I love time-travel stories, which is the only reason that I continued to watch In Search of the Lost Future.
As for the quality of In Search of the Lost Future, it is not the best. The first half of the series meanders along with various typical slice-of-life type stories with only a very faint semblance of a cohesive story. While not always evident, aspects to the overall story are revealed slowly in those episodes, but the first half seems to be largely focused on establishing the characters. Even though one or two of the characters are likable, they are mostly rather clichéd and typical, and honestly, those early episodes were barely tolerable at times, although that is largely due to the animation.
However, in the second half of the series, or rather the last five episodes, the plot actually starts to kick in. Ushinawareta finally begins to explain various things that have been set up earlier in the series. However, where the series shines is in its variation on the principles of time-travel. While not entirely original, certain elements are somewhat unique and the resolution to the story is relatively unexpected. However, unless you are a time-travel enthusiast like me, that aspect will likely not be to entertain for you.
Studio Feel's animation is the series' weakest aspect. While Feel's previous work, Outbreak Company, Locodol, and Jinsei, all had rather pleasant animation, In Search of the Lost Future's animation is sorely lacking. In the two episodes, it attempts to use an awkward blend of 2D and 3D animation for the character models to disastrous effect. Of the fall, no anime was uglier. Thankfully, after the first few episodes, the animation shifts back to the typical 2D animation for the most part, and while it was a bit subpar, it was not unwatchable.
In Search of the Lost Future is an anime with an incredibly rough start. However, it redeems itself due to the strong conclusion and exploration of time-travel theories. Due to said slow start, recommending the series is not easy, unless you have already seen other time-travel anime, like Steins;Gate and are in desperate need of more.
Watch if you like: Time-Travel,

Please be sure to check back next week for more fall anime reviews.

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