This Ugly Yet Beautiful World
Takeru has been drifting through life with no particular goal or direction. While making deliveries with his friend Rin, they witness a flash of light from the stars. At the impact site where the light strikes the ground, they find a cute girl. What do you do with cute anime girls you find from outer space? You take them home of course.
Takeru became attracted to Hikaru the moment they met, and it looks like she may be the key to healing wounds in his heart long forgotten. But what exactly is her purpose for visiting the Earth?
My expectations for this one were low, which is good because early on it's very weak. I wouldn't say I hated it, but it felt like it was on autopilot until the last 4-5 episodes. Things like animation, and music are fine, but the characters fail to make much of themselves early on.
Takeru finds his ideal girl given form one night; named Hikari. Hikari's perspective is typical for the magical girlfriend from outer space. She wants to experience life and the things we take for granted that seem mysterious to her. Takeru is the typical bashful guy who can't admit his romantic feelings and it's generally pretty lame.
Takeru's friend Rin also gets a magical girlfriend named Akari. Rin is very level headed and calm considering the situation. While Akari is a bit odd, she has a more grounded approach to her new experiences on Earth. This relationship feels much more natural than the fumbling romance Takeru's story tries.
Most of this show is blah blah, slice of life stuff that's nothing special, with the mandatory hot springs episode. The strange stuff that occurs in the first episode isn't touched on for a long time, but when the main story comes out it's actually pretty cool. As expected, cheerful bubbly anime girl has a dark side to her, and also in typical anime fashion may cause the end of the world.
[+] More Plot Info (slight spoiler)
Hikari is in fact the will of (destruction of) the universe or something like that. The Earth has an immune system against this kind of thing, and some types of plants/animals can change into super beings that can combat these world destroyers. That's not bad for fantasy stuff. Then there's the question, what happens if the world destroying will of the universe and the Earth's defense against that avatar fall in love? Kinda cheesy in an anime way, but kinda cool too.
Taken all together this anime is average. The dub does it no favors, the characters aren't very good, and much of the story feels like its going through the motions, but towards the end it improves quite a bit. This Strange Yet Beutiful World requires some patience, but manages to be an ok watch.
Hikari: I am a bottomless darkness. I swallow up the tender light of all life. I am the ender of worlds. I am the goddess of destruction.
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reviewed by archen in 2012