First of all I would like to apologize about how late this review is. I have been really busy trying to get ready for college that I had no time to not only write this, but also rewatch this anime. I was in the middle of watching a different anime to review when I realized it was too similar to my previous reviews so I went with something different. The review of that anime will come later. So I changed and went to a different genre. I am truly sorry for the delay but cannot honestly promise a finite schedule on my reviews because of school, but I promise at least once a week…maybe…I’ll try really hard.
Here is my fourth anime review. A review of the anime La Corda d’Oro!!!
I am one of those people who have always felt really close to music. In both Jr. High and High School I have been in both band and choir. I know how to play three instruments, the piano, flute, and oboe, so it is only natural that as an anime fan I was also always searching for something that dealt with that. And I have to say there are hardly any anime out there that deal with music, which is kind of disappointing. But there is one anime that did deal with a music school and a music competition: La Corda d’Oro.
La Corda d’Oro is a 26 episode anime, well 28 if you count whatever in the world the Second Passo was supposed to be. It was originally an otome dating game and was produced by Ruby Party, a subdivison of Koei who is well known for their otome games. It was also a manga, which is how I originally found it.
The story of La Corda d’Oro centers on the prestigious school Seisou Acadmey which is well known for its Music Department that holds a competition every year where a group of students compete against each other. Past winners of this competition have gone on to become well known musicians. In general, the competition is a big deal. I mean students miss a lot of class to watch the competitors perform. Our main character is a Seisou General Education student, Kahoko Hino. She does not have any musical talent, but one day is approached by fairy named Lili, who gives her a magical violin and enters her into the famous competition. It centers around Kahoko and the other competitors, as well as a few others, dealing with the stress of this competition and the usual teenage angst.
Our main character, Kahoko, is just your regular girl who gets thrown into a music competition that she knows nothing about. Her violin allows her to play a piece as long as she has heard it before, but still makes her practice so that she gets better. She is your typical nice, kind heroine who is often oblivious to whatever is going on. She does go through a period of character development when she begins to feel guilty for having a magic violin that practically plays for her, while the other competitors have actually worked hard to become as good musicians as they are. Even if she is bland, it is still nice to see a character who has been giving a gift but feels guilty about it. Another thing you have to remember is that since the story was originally a dating game, Kahoko suffers from that dating game heroine condition. All the people around her are falling in love with her and she has no idea what is going on. This causes her character to be angering at times.
The next character is Ryotaro Tsuchiura, a fellow General Education student who is on the school’s soccer team. He also used to compete in piano competitions when he was young and is very good. He befriends Kahoko, and is there for her when many judge her for competing in the competition. This leads to him being placed in the competition after the first performance and has to deal with the mess that ensues.
Len Tsukimori is a Music Department student who plays the violin. He has performed since he was little and his parents are also well known musicians. He is very quiet and would rather keep to himself then deal with others. He and Ryotaro are often arguing and fighting one another, which can be funny at times. Len can also be caring at times, often helping Kahoko when she is injured. He was one of my favorite characters in the entire show.
Next it the energetic upperclassman, Kazuki Hihara. He plays the trumpet and at the beginning is really not sure how he made it into the competition. This is stupid because he is actually good at playing his instrument and definitely deserves to be in the competition. He quickly befriends Kahoko and Ryotaro and seems fun to be around. He is also very outgoing and adds an energy to this, at times, very quiet cast.
Azuma Yunoki is a classmate of Kazuki’s and is also a third year. Now in my Gundam 00 review I mentioned that when I first saw Tieria I thought he was a girl. Well that’s about the same thing that happened to me with Azuma in La Corda d’Oro. The first time I saw him, this was while I was reading the manga, I thought he was just a cross dresser. No harm no foul. But no. He is just a boy that chooses to have really long hair. Plus at times he acts SUPER feminine. Plus he plays the flute. Does this affect his character in anyway? No. All of the characters are just oblivious to the fact that he looks super girl all the time. If this were a comedy anime, which it is not he would be the character that would be dressed like a girl and treated with other outrageous shenanigans. His character though just gave you the constant jerk feeling. He’s super rich, has an army of fangirls, and is super mean to our main character at times. He has been nice on several occasions but then you are just like “Um…so this guy is bipolar?” Or actually I would phrase it as they needed a character to be five different things and just picked him. I honestly didn’t like him. He was a jerk.
Next is my FAVORITE character in this whole series, Keiichi Shimizu. He is a first year who plays the cell. This is really quite the accomplishment because it is hard for a first year to make it into the competition and Keiichi did that, well him and another girl. But if I were to describe him I would probably just say the word sleepy. He has a really laid back attitude and literally sleeps all the time. I liked this because I just really want to sleep sometimes too. It was just something about his quiet, laid back character that made me like him.
The final competitor, and the last character I will describe in detail is the only other girl competitor, Shoko Fuyumi. She is also the only other first year in the competition besides Keiichi which means she is good at her instrument. Her instrument is the clarinet and she is very shy and quiet. Shoko is embarrassed easily and befriends Kahoko very quickly. Unfortunately, she was a character who was there but really did not say much or get too much done. As a character who could have easily befriended the main character and played a large role in the story, Shoko hardly did any of these things.
Other characters include Mr. Kanayan, the teacher in charge of the competition, an upperclassman that Kazuki knows, Kahoko’s friends, and Nami, a girl from the newspaper club. They were all present for the story but did not play a large role. Also there was Lili, the fairy who gave Kahoko the magic violin. Lili’s character is basically there just to give Kahoko the violin and mess with everyone.
The Second Passo does introduce a few new character, but is only two episodes long so you really get nothing out of them.
The story is basically anything you would associate with an otome game. The main character is a girl who does something and meets a whole bunch of guys, and they all end up falling in love with her. Well the anime doesn’t go THAT far, but you get my point. Add in a little music competition and you have this anime’s storyline. It can keep you entertained but doesn’t draw you in and make you wanting more. La Corda d’Oro is technically a romance anime, but hardly any romance happens in it. So if you are wanting to watch it for that reason you will not be satisfied.
As I said before the characters were either one of three things: likeable, horrible, or forgettable. The ones that I liked I did enjoy to watch but others I did not. But you can see reasons for it because they were from a dating game that did not always give the characters the depth that they needed.
The music was good, but only for those with a select taste. Most of the soundtrack was made up of all the songs the characters played in the competition, which I think is a cool idea to do. The opening theme I at times cannot take seriously. It’s just that the lady singing it…I just can’t do it. The ending theme is cool though because it is sung by the voice actors from the five male leads. I always find it cool when shows do that.
The animation is okay, considering it came out quite a while ago. The motions are fluid and it is still pretty to watch. The character do have kind of bizarre hair colors, but that is a pretty common thing with anime.
Overall, La Corda d’Oro is a good show, but you have to have a certain taste for this kind of anime to watch it. It’s plot and characters suffered a bit because they came from an dating game, and that did hurt the anime a lot. It also does not land a spot on my top 20 anime, but does have a safe position in my top 30. It is an anime that will always be dear to me.
I award La Corda D’Oro with a score of a C. If you do not have anything to do and need something to watch, and like music, then go watch this anime.
That’s it for this time! Let me know what you think down in the comments, and make sure to subscribe if you like my posts. If there is a certain anime you think I should watch then go ahead and leave it in the comments. See you next time.