- Genre: Romance, yuri, drama
- Episodes: 11
- Studio: J.C. Staff
When Fumi was a child she was tiny and quick to cry but her best friend Akira (A-chan) was always there to save the day. This is why it was so devastating for Fumi when she had to move away from everything she has known including her dearest friend. But ten years later and Fumi is back. She’s become very tall and very beautiful but beneath it all she is still the same fragile young woman. Thankfully, although A-chan may be the little one now, she’s still just as spunky and energetic as ever. And a decade later, these two best friends are rediscovering their friendship. Everything that’s the same as well as all that’s changed.
Maybe you read that Yuri tag and the description above and you deduced pretty much everything that happens in this series. I don’t blame you. That’s what I did. Childhood friends reunited is such a cliché premise in the romance genre it might as well be a trope in and of itself. By the way, I was wrong. Completely and delightfully wrong.
Visually, Sweet Blue Flowers is a series that I would qualify as calm. In the sense that looking at it was relaxing and calmed me down. The colours are subdued and give the impression of aquarelles. The backgrounds look like beautiful pencil drawn cells. The simple character designs really grew on my (this may have something to do with the fact that I gots feels for one of them so take my impressions with a grain of salt) and little details like how Fumi’s long hair became intricately dishevelled when she collapsed in bed were actually impressive in their quiet and understated way.
I mentioned this once or twice before but speckled sunlight is one of my favourite effects in anime and Sweet Blue Flowers is full of it! Every other episode has scenes of bright sunshine filtered through leaves. Watching the series gave me the impression of walking through a beautiful green park on a lazy afternoon where it’s neither too hot or too cold and for some reason there is almost no one else around. It was calm. And I mean that as a compliment.
There isn’t much movement and as such the animation can’t be considered particularly impressive but the story doesn’t really call for it. What animation there is, is very good and the art remains very consistent. The voice acting is charming. It’s difficult to imagine that the girls I’m hearing haven’t really been friends for years or aren’t really going through strange and confusing times together.
As for the story, Sweet Blue Flowers lives up to its name. It’s extremely sweet, a little blue and full of delicate flowers. Yeah, I was waiting to pull that line out…
In all seriousness, if I could define the story in one word, I think I would chose “gentle”. If I got a few more, I would go with down to earth as well. This may be the most realistic Yuri anime I have ever watched for all the ups and downs this implies. It’s a little slow and sometimes can feel aimless. High school romances don’t generally last forever. There isn’t that much high drama or huge exciting events. For the most part, it’s just a bunch of girls going to school together and trying to figure out who they are and who they want to be.
Speaking of which, and this will only make sense to those that have seen the series. Although A-chan may be my favourite because she really stepped up when it matters, I am so so proud of Fumi. I’m not sure I have ever been this proud of an anime character. I was beaming in my living room as though I had raised the girl myself.
I don’t want to give away too much so instead let me try to tell you what Sweet Blue Flowers isn’t. It isn’t a melodrama. Some characters can be a little dramatic, I mean these are teenage girls, but in general people get over things pretty easily. It isn’t a rose coloured romance either. There are as many sad as happy moments and ultimately this is the story of first loves, not last ones. Not everything ends well and some things don’t really get a resolution at all. That’s just how life is sometimes. You just kind of move on even though nothing really happened.
It also isn’t and Ecchi or a fanservice anime. If you are looking for some hot yuri action, you are not going to find this one very satisfying. In fact, I would say that Sweet Blue Flowers is as much a celebration of friendship (if not more so) as one of romance.
I could sit here and tell you everything that happens. I could probably do so in just a couple of paragraphs at that. It’s not a very complicated story. But it’s an anime to experience rather than understand. And as it is a slow and not that eventful an experience, it probably won’t be for everyone. For what it’s worth, it left a cynical romance and drama hater as myself, a little bit in love. And it’s nice to be a little bit in love at times.
I’m actually curious if anyone else out there has any thoughts on this series. I sort of want to talk about it more…
Favourite character: A-chan but her mom is a close second. Also Sugimoto is hot, I would be in the fan club too.
What this anime taught me: Heartbreak is a precious thing
If you can’t be happy, at least you can be drunk!
Suggested drink: Berry White (I’m proud of this one)
- Every time A-chan saves the day! – Cheers!
- Every time Fumi cries – get some water
- Every time a family member is overprotective – take a sip
- Every time A-chan argues with her brother – take a sip
- Every time any girl wears braids – play with your hair
- Every time we see those two little girls (you’ll know when you see them) – take a sip
- Every time anyone is lying – get some water, you don’t want to kill your liver
- Every time Fumi is reading – take a sip
- Every time A-chan rides the train – I don’t know why I chose her specifically… – take a sip
- Every time we see a nun – hide the booze
- Every time we see the library – take a small sip
- Every time A-chan is full of energy – take a sip
- Every time there is speckled sunlight – take it in
- Every time anyone skips school – tsk tsk
- Every time A-chan thinks about food – get a snack
- Every time hey go to a café – I dunno maybe get an espresso? That sounds bad for your heart, stick to the cocktail!
The images don’t do it justice but it will ive you an idea
20 thoughts on “Sweet Blue Flowers Lives Up To Its Name”
I love story that celebrates friendship as much as romance! And I’m not really looking for some hot yuri scenes in shows so this sounds perfect for me. Adding this on my watchlist!
It’s just a lovely little story
Love this story! And the anime’s artwork was brilliant!
It fit in perfectly
Ooooo! A favorite of mine! The manga has a lot more material and I would have enjoyed a second season or at least a longer run. The OP and the ED don’t leave much suspense as to how the relationship will go. Quiet and gentle, watching them as they travel thru life is so much fun.
I thought the OP was super misleading….
Yeah, but it wad super sweet! If we could follow the story line far enough into the future, it might come true.
It was so beautifully done, I’ll cut them some slack.
As you might have picked up from my review, I think the fact that storyline did not come true is a huge strength of the series.
It’s a really lovely anime series, and probably my favourite yuri-specific one of all time. Thematically, there are a lot of similarities between it and Hourou Musuko/Wandering Son, so if you’re interested in exploring more about gender and sexuality in another non-melodramatic anime, I’d highly recommend that one (assuming you haven’t already watched it, of course).
They were both created by Takako Shimura.
Yes. I really like both anime adaptations, but I think Wandering Son is my favourite of the two
I haven’t watched wandering son but I’ve been meaning to get around to it
Ooh, I liked the show. I remember it surprisingly well, considering I watched it long ago and never re-watched it. (I was trying to figure out when I watched it; Summer 2010 seems likely. I didn’t watch it when it aired, but I’d already seen it when Hourou Musuko came up in Spring 2011.)
I remember this scene where Fumi came out to Acchan and asked her to please not think of it as gross, and Acchan was so stunned she was still silent while walking home, because she didn’t understand what about it was supposed to be gross.
Such a lovely series. I’d forgotten just how pretty the show is, too. The screenshots are a really good reminder.
The visuals do such a great job in creating an atmosphere
I really liked the show! I must say I did favor Fumi over A-chan a lot myself. Mostly for her growth and the steps she takes. I nominated her for a spot when I was looking for a Waifu! She’d make a good girlfriend I think!
A-chan would make a great friend to have though! So not sure if I could only pick one if I’d pick the friend or the girlfriend!
I really ended up disliking Yasuko as a character (A-chan’s brother as well.. he’s kinda creepy). Like normally I can see the good in a character but her I just found very weak and I could not respect her choices at all. I liked her sisters a whole lot better!
I really liked Fumi’s voice as well and her mannerismns! Like a frail little flower.. which fit the title so much I just felt like I wanted to shield her from all the bad things!
I actually though Yasuko’s weakness is what made her an interesting character.
I didn’t mean she was a bad character, i just genuinely hate her as a person like as an actual person she kinda disgusted me.
Mostly because I know people like her! I was Fumi to a person like her once, I cant hate my Yasuko for reasons, but I could hate this animated one! Almost therapeutically so.
She is a super realistc character and probably interesting, I just understand to well what she did and in a way she is the opposite of things i stand for
I can understand that. I’m sorry you got hurt in the past. I hope it’s better in the future.
Still I can’t exactly hate her. I remember being young and lost and not knowing what I want. Being hurt and not knowing how to make it better. I was never sociable enough to transfer that hurt on to others but I do sympathize with the pain of aimlessness. And seeing as she lost Fumi she got a huge punishment so I hope it will serve to make her a bit better about these things in the future.
I am pretty happy where i am now! I just don’t like the type of person!
I actually do see my Yasuko from time to time and we hang out.. and she did not really change.. she got worse in her compulsions. Perhaps it’s because I have a real one in my life I just see her as bane..
I am there for my Yasuko when she needs me we are close to.. but not really.. friends. She was a great outlet for me though! I do get where she is coming from.. but the crimes she commits to me are quite capital sins.
At the same time I do think it’s amazing how this show can show us characters that can change based on our perception. On what we experienced on how we are. That makes them almost like real people to me.. in worse shows you basically get spoonfed how they are and a personality is universal.. but this to me was much more.. real.
Bloom into you for example by comparison had less dimensional characters. I think Yuu to most people is the same person. Here their quirks are a lot tinier. So I really was amazed by this show.. it almost feels as if the writer lived trough this somehow.