Blue Period –Stream it or Skip it?

On Netflix, I came across the Anime Blue Period as I was wandering the halls of Netflix. Wondering what to watch next. I wanted a nice slow anime with a solid storyline and stumbled into this one. Blue period is interesting to me personally, but I feel it will either be a ‘hit’ or a ‘miss’ with others. It’s one of those anime where it is either full nosedive into the story or it just goes pass by. Mainly because of the subject matter of the anime. However, I have watched other anime like Haikyu and enjoyed it. Even though I may not be a volleyball player myself.

When talking about art, I remember watching this beautiful anime by the name of Forest of Piano. It really captivate me other than the CGI that is. Do read that review as well… worth it. And do check out my other reviews like my Fumetsu no Anata e Review: Never Ending Evolution. Or my mix review of Japan Sinks 2020.

Blue Period Main Protagonist
(c) Tsubasa Yamaguchi & BP Production Team

So the Storyline in Blue period is about a high school student, Yatora Yaguchi. He works hard in achieving excellence in his studies but also tries to portray a fun, cool demeanour kinda guy by hanging out with friends and just enjoying life. But basically Yatora feels bored with his “normal” life. This is very typical of students in school or colleges even here. Social norms forcing us to behave a certain way. Being bound when we just want to escape do things our way. And that can be doing absolutely nothing at all. However, as I know, doing things not within the acceptable norm will be looked upon as anti-social and delinquency.

If you like what you’re reading, then you’ll love my write up on Wakakozake – A short review for a short, little anime and Shaman King 2021.

For Yatora, it must be the same. However, one day he discovered Art. As he sees a painting made by a member of the Art Club, something drew him into it. The experience was moving to the very bone, looking at its immense beauty and message. In an art class exercise, he himself tries to convey a feeling of his own about the place he hangs out in through painting and that’s where we see his Blue painting. When one of the members of-the-art club actually appreciated it. It filled him with real joy and from that experience; he finds himself so invested in art that he decides it is what he wants to do for a living. But Yatora wasn’t from a rich family. His choices in life mean that it will affect his job prospects and his future. As such, his parents are also hesitant about his choice.

Blue Period Poster
(c) Tsubasa Yamaguchi & BP Production Team

This struggle resonates with me as I can understand how living a life that is not acceptable by society. How making choices in life that are not as per the invisible norm of society can hamper one’s future and life. Even how difficult it will be to simply keep a job or make a living. Society, as it stands now, does not want shepherds to lead but wants a surplus production of sheep that will serve as cheap and obedient labour for the 1% of the society. I’ve written a review of an anime called Aggretsuko, which is an anime about being a worker in an unfair and unjust work system that abuses workers and takes away their rights.

Yatora was also faced with many dilemmas of his own when he went down this journey he had chosen. They soon made him to realise how difficult it actually was to draw even the basic shape. In the beginning, Yatora had remarked, “I don’t get what’s so great about Picasso. Even I could paint those.”. He couldn’t yet understand the beauty and the hard work that goes into art. But once he himself became obsessed with it, it made him realise how much dedication, concentration and time-consuming Art really is.

Blue Period Cute
(c) Tsubasa Yamaguchi & BP Production Team

Yatora is the kind of person can adapt to what others are like around him. He aims to please everyone around him. This trait actually pretty common as well in many social circles in real life. Whereby one sacrifices the needs of the self in order to fit in and not be alone. As society judges people who are alone as being introverts and anti-social. So even Yatora, suppresses his own feelings about the world around him and relies a lot on his success in studies and is calculative of his own actions and behaviour.

So when he joins the art class, he found a medium of expression that words would not suffice. But, as he is usually putting high standards on himself, he then undervalues his own worth and work. And we often see him comparing to others a lot. To which then becomes overwhelming for him when he is struggling in his artwork. We constantly see him admiring the work of others and is cautious even in his expression in his art. This, in-turn, holds him back.

Blue Period Artist
(c) Tsubasa Yamaguchi & BP Production Team

There is an interesting exchange between Yatora and Maru Mori, his upper classman. Mori is the catalyst that inspired Yatora to do art when he sees Mori’s angel painting in the art room. He had remarked on how talented she was, but Mori, in her calm demeanour, told him that his assumption that it was just talent is to undermine her hard work in creating the beautiful masterpiece. That scene piqued my interest in the Anime. It sounded Right. We usually brush off people’s talent as something that is natural, but are usually ignorant of the hard work that is attached to their work.

As someone who loves a good painting and sketches done by great hard-working people, I can definitely understand how heavy it is to hold a brush and deliver that all important stroke. I have tried on several occasions to paint and sketch and all I could come up with is a decent drawing NOT art!!

(c) Tsubasa Yamaguchi & BP Production Team

Overall, Blue period is a decent enough Anime. It is for those that are looking for something different, but many will drop it after an episode or two. It has good clean animation, normal but interesting characters. Which usually makes it for an anime that has potential to grow and carry on. Blue Period may have its appeal to aspiring artists who like anime as well, but it will ignite something in people that may have a hidden love for painting and drawing. It’s a nice way of showcasing Art to the public and in revealing how difficult it is to be an aspiring artist and how difficult it is to touch brush on canvas.

To end, here is an interesting fact about the name Blue Period, which the animators may have done it on purpose. “Blue Period” is also a term to describe the works produced by Pablo Picasso in the early 1900’s when he painted many of his paintings in shades of blue and blue-greenish colours.

“I don’t get what’s so great about Picasso. Even I could paint those.”

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