I guess that was one way to end the series. Not sure it was the right pick for Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun, but at least it’s an anime original ending that works.
Anime original endings are always tricky. As fans of the manga will tell you, certain endings close the book on a sequel whilst others simply butcher everything the anime has tried to accomplish. In Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun‘s case, it has to do with closure and satisfaction, mostly to do with the genre.
First of all, let’s appreciate that this is a shojo romantic comedy. What does this mean Instead of all that harem and shipping combo, we get the extreme comedy version of the “Will they/won’t they ” As good a job as Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun does, it doesn’t mean we can’t have some closure. I’m of the opinion that all romance/romantic comedies need some type of conclusion and not so people can be happy for their favourite couples.
Blame it on blind optimism, blame it on the studio or blame it on the guy doing series composition but one thing is clear: they wanted/needed more episodes. In this case, 13 episodes was too little, so they condensed 4 volumes (of the 10 available) into this series and left some slim hope of a second season.
The episode itself didn’t have the same humour and general feel that Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun has. Probably the biggest selling point of the series is the comedy, so to sit through this episode was disappointing to say the least. Original ending or not, this one just didn’t capture what the series was about and what it did so well. More than anything, it was a simple way to bring in all the characters and to have Shizuku narrate the ending. A little too simplistic and lacking in creativity.
All in all, it was disappointing. I expected more from Brain’s Base.
Despite my lack of enthusiasm for the ending, Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun was a great series. Possibly one of my favourite of the year. You come for the romance but you really stay for the comedy, which is what I’ve always considered to be the forte of Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun.
The colourful animation, fun soundtrack and great seiyuu cast voicing a colourful cast, all amounted to a great anime that does the manga proud for the most part. Why not fully Not because of any one episode in particular but the last 2 or 3 episodes.
Any shortcomings for me were because of the series composition. Towards the end, it really showed how poor it choice was to animate those particular chapters of the manga. I’m disappointed in Noboru Takagi for doing this because it leaves more questions for us and the last few episodes stole attention from the main couple. I know I said comedy was more important, but it was a sloppy decision to focus on others (more to do with Natsume than Yamaken) then to conclude in a more well thought way.
Ranting about the last few episodes now over. Other than that, I have no complaints about Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun. I will say how unhappy I am that BD/DVD sales tell us a second season is less than likely. If you want more, go read the manga staring from chapter Vol. 5 Chapter 17.