Sakurada is a small town where average people are imbued with paranormal abilities, which are for the most part trivial. Leaving the town means they forget about the abilities and forget how to use them, making the town a secret to outsiders. Kei is fairly brilliant but otherwise normal high school student with a perfect memory allowing him to recall anything down to the last detail.
Nothing significant came of his ability until he met Haruki; an emotionally detached girl with the ability to reset time. She can set a point, then roll back time up to two days later, but this also applies to her meaning she doesn't know it happened and leading her to repeat the same events. However Kei's perfect memory allows him to recall events even after a reset. Together they have the power to change the future, although neither could foresee how their meeting was entangled with the destiny of the death of a classmate.
Early on something didn't feel right with Sakurada Reset, yet I couldn't explain why I wanted to watch more. There is something quite brilliant about this anime, but it's a very specific audience who would like it. It's a very very intellectual show, but whether that's enough to enjoy is a tough call.
Sakurada Reset is emotionally flat in a way few titles are. This seemed intentional, but unnecessary as it only served to disconnect me from the show. The result is an anime which can be excruciatingly dry, especially when combined with lengthy dialog. This is makes Sakurada Reset a somewhat niche show. Sound boring? It can be, and kind of is... however..
Sakurada Reset is constructed with so much intelligence, that I was honestly blown away. I'd often think "holy shit, someone REALLY put some thought into this". If you're a stickler about time travel paradox (normally that's me), you might have a problem with many fundamental plot points, however it's simply accepted that paradox isn't a thing. Paradox plots issues are usually a dead giveaway for writers which think they are smarter than they are, resulting in an overall poorly conceived product; which isn't the case with Sakurada Reset.
Unusual powers are common amongst the residents of Sakurada, but most of them are benign and relatively harmless. A bureau keeps watch over the town, in particular those who have more advanced and capable abilities. However much like a game of chess, it isn't simply the piece that makes it powerful, it's how the board is laid out and how pieces work together. This is most obvious when combining Kei's perfect memory, with Haruki's reset. However nearly every power in the show plays a big role, even the seemingly insignificant ones. The extent one character goes to bypass a woman who can detect lies is pretty amazing. Early episodes seem like typical frivolous introduction episodes, but there's already a lot going on concerning the main plot by episode 2, however it's not clear until much later on.
Many anime need to exalt the amazing genius of a tactician to emphasise how smart they are, however Sakurada Reset is fairly humble about Kei's masterful plotting - which is clear by how the story unfolds. Characters put their faith in Kei, but rarely say much more about it. Kei's plans are clever, but didn't feel contrived in the way I think most titles tend to be. I'm not one to say good things about emotionless doll type characters, but Haruki is a very good one as far as these go. The fact that she had to shut down emotionally makes her character type fairly plausible.
How do you know if Sakurada Reset is for you? I'm not sure what to recommend since it took a while to hook me, and even when invested in it; still felt dull in parts. This anime only misses the next level of excellence in the absence of vitality and emotion. I wouldn't have considered that a big deal, but having seen how it goes without said things... yeah, it's kind of a big deal. Still worth picking up if wanting a well thought out plot.
Kei: Adults assume that their way of thinking is common sense.
Shintaro: Of course they do. The world is built on assumptions.
Kei: It's dangerous for a girl to walk alone at night.
Sumire: Sure, if I were an ordinary girl who couldn't see the future.
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