Kimi ni Todoke: A sweet love story about opening up and reaching out to others.
In A Nutshell
Kimi ni Todoke follows Kuronuma Sawako, nicknamed ‘Sadako’ by her classmates due to her resemblance to the character from The Ring. Sawako is a shy girl who has no friends. Her life changes when Kazehaya Shouta, a guy with a very friendly personality, approaches her to help integrate her into the class. From then on, Sawako goes on a journey in which she learns the value of self-confidence, friendship, and love.
Meet the Characters
Sawako Kuronuma is the protagonist of the story. Sawako is a shy, naïve girl in search of friendship. She has trouble making friends and is alienated by others due to her resemblance to the character Sadako from the horror film The Ring. She has poor social skills, but thanks to Kazehaya’s kind nature, she can gradually open up to her classmates. Sawako is also a very pure, well-intentioned girl, and is always putting others before herself.
Shouta Kazehaya is the male deuteragonist. He has a very lively and friendly personality, which along with his good looks, makes him very popular. He approaches Sawako after noticing that she’s always alone and volunteering for school tasks. He falls for Sawako from the first day and becomes one of her closest friends. Despite his popularity, he’s also shy when it comes to love, and he’s always nervous when approaching Sawako.
Ayane Yano is a close friend of Sawako. She is very mature and perceptive, often being the one who figures out every misunderstanding. After realizing what’s wrong, she tries to help others by giving them enough information so that they can move forward and act on their own. Yano is seen as very savvy in love matters, and she has a boyfriend in college. She’s also very protective of Sawako and can come off as intimidating if someone tries to hurt her.
Chizuru Yoshida is another one of Sawako’s closest friends. Yano and her were best friends before they met Sawako, and they both used to believe she was scary. Being a bit of a tomboy, Yoshida is known for being quite aggressive and having temper problems, making others afraid of her. In actuality, she’s a big softy and often gets emotional when witnessing Sawako’s pure innocence. Because of this, she has trouble controlling her emotions when there’s conflict.
Ryuu Sanada is yet another member of this group of friends. His closest friend is his childhood friend, Yoshida, as they see each other as siblings. He is quiet most of the time, but he’s smart and, just like Yano, can read the atmosphere better than others. Because of this, he often gives love advice to Kazehaya when he’s having problems understanding Sawako. He is a part of the baseball team and likes dogs.
A Brief History of Kimi ni Todoke: The When, Where and How
The series got two anime adaptations produced by Production I.G. The first season consisted of 25 episodes and came out in 2009, with the sequel following in 2011 with 12 episodes. A live action adaptation was also released in 2010.
Why It’s Awesome
Kimi ni Todoke might be a love story, but for the most part. It’s a story about coming of age, friendship, and trust. For this particular reason, it’s a good thing that the best part of the series is its characters. From the adorable main couple to the always supportive side-characters, every single one of the characters is likable and adds something valuable to the story.
Despite been criticized for overdramatizing and dragging out some plot points for too long, the series shines at its brightest when it focuses on the daily lives of this group of friends. The interactions between Kazehaya and Sawako are always cute, as they’re usually flustering and being awkward around each other (see gif above). On the other hand, Yano and Yoshida are the friend’s everyone wishes they had, while characters like Ryuu and Arai-sensei will always make you laugh. The comedy is particularly good in this one, with Sawako’s chibi/scary faces being the main highlight.
As the title “From me to you” suggests, Kimi ni Todoke is ultimately a story about opening up and reaching out to others. As a romance, Kimi ni Todoke is a slow-burn type of story that pays a lot of detail to all the aspects of a couple of young, awkward teenage kids falling in love. It’s a very sweet and heartwarming show, so if you’re into teeth-rotting fluff, you will enjoy this one!