Japanese dating simulations are a dime dozen out there. And for a big majority of them,  they have erotic or adult contents in them. I mean, that is the motivation to buy those games, right? Who would ever buy such games? Only lonely otaku loners and perverts… Maybe… But not all dating simulations contain such elements and a handful manages to stay clean. Amagami SS and Photokano are both considered spiritual successors to the Kimikiss dating simulation. Although I have not played any of these games, I read they lack that erotic content. Even the anime adaptation is considered ‘clean’. Maybe a little fanservice here but nothing explicit.

Total number of episodes:
Amagami SS: 26 episodes for season 1 and 12 episodes for season 2. Total of 38 episodes.
Photokano: Only 1 season of 13 episodes.

Multi-arc branching style:
Amagami SS: For the first season, each girl is dedicated 4 episodes while only 2 episodes in the second season.
Photokano: The first 4 episodes are common arcs. The remaining episodes dedicate 1 episode for each girl involved (with exception of Haruka’s arc that covers 2 episodes).

The school:
Amagami SS: Kibitou High School.
Photokano: Kouga Academy.

The hero:
Amagami SS: Junichi Tachibana.
Photokano: Kazuya Maeda.

His story:
Amagami SS: He was stood up on Christmas Eve 2 years ago and this trauma left him heartbroken. His encounter with the girls will open up his heart to love again.
Photokano: He has tried many club activities in the past but none was interesting enough to make him stay in the long term. But when he receives a camera from his dad at the end of summer vacation, he starts taking pictures with it and this leads him to romantic encounters with various girls.

His little sister:
Amagami SS: Miya.
Photokano: Kanon.

The girls:
The girls who have episodes and arcs covering them.
Amagami SS: Haruka Morishima, Kaoru Tanamachi, Sae Nakata, Ai Nanasaki, Rihoko Sakurai, Tsukasa Ayatsuji and Risa Kamizaki (only in first season).
Photokano: Haruka Niimi, Hikari Sanehara, Aki Muroto, Nonoka Masami, Mai Sakura, Rina Yunoki and Tomoe Misumi.

Other girls:
The rest of the girls who act as supporting characters and do not have an arc themselves.
Amagami SS: Hibiki Tsukahara, Keiko Tanaka, Kanae Itou, Ruriko Yuzuki, Manaka Hiba and Yukari Ayatsuji.
Photokano: Yuko Uchida, Katsumi Kurebayashi and Ruu Narita.

The other guys:
Amagami SS: Masayoshi Umehara.
Photokano: Hiromichi Kudou, Itta Nakagawa and Takashi Azuma.

Teacher:
Amagami SS: Maya Takahashi.
Photokano: Misa Kitagawa and trainee teacher Momoko Ootani.

Stalker girl:
Amagami SS: Risa.
Photokano: Uchida (her specialty is stealth mode so that’s practically like stalking, right?).

Childhood friend:
The girls who has been friends with our male protagonist since younger days.
Amagami SS: Kaoru.
Photokano: Haruka.

Student council president:
Amagami SS: Tsukasa.
Photokano: Muroto.

Swimming club girl:
Amagami SS: Ai.
Photokano: Muroto.

Lone club member:
Amagami SS: Tea Club. Rihoko will be the only member once Ruriko and Manaka graduate.
Photokano: Rina is the only member of the Cooking Research Society.

Going on a diet:
Amagami SS: Rihoko.
Photokano: Mai.

Most popular girl:
Amagami SS: Haruka – Has half British blood.
Photokano: Haruka – A tennis club member.
Coincidence that they share the same name? Also a coincidence that both girls are the only ones that the male protagonist said anything about marriage to them.

Bustiest girl:
Amagami SS: Sae.
Photokano: Momoko.

Challenge of love:
Amagami SS: In season two, Kurosawa openly challenges Tsukasa over Junichi.
Photokano: Nonoka challenges Maeda to a love challenge for a chance to become a girl he can love.

Cultural festival feature:
Amagami SS: Best Couple Contest.
Photokano: Photography Club’s photo exhibits.

Cat outfit:
Amagami SS: Ai and Miya dress up as a pair of cats in the Best Couple Contest. WTF…
Photokano: Maeda borrows and dresses up in a cat suit just to amuse Sanehara.

Cosplayer:
Amagami SS: Sae?
Photokano: Uchida? She may also be the legendary cosplayer named Alice.

Unusual episode ending:
The kind that doesn’t end with the typical guy ends up with girl.
Amagami SS: In season one, Rihoko didn’t become Junichi’s girlfriend but remained friends.
Photokano: Misumi transfers away to another school due to her father’s job.

Remarrying parents:
Amagami SS: Kaoru’s mother with some other man.
Photokano: Maeda’s mom and Kanon’s father.

Opening themes:
Amagami SS: All sung by Azusa. First season’s first opening theme: I Love. First season’s second opening theme: Kimi No Mama De. Second season’s opening theme: Check My Soul.
Photokano: Koisuru Lens by Kaori Hayato.

Ending themes:
Amagami SS: For the first season, each girl has their own song customize to their character. For the second season, a standard song, Kokuhaku by Azusa.
Photokano: Although Smile F is the only song, they are sung by the character who voiced them during their arc. For the general arc, it is a group performance by all the seiyuus.

Studio production:
Amagami SS: AIC.
Photokano: Madhouse.

Conclusion
To be honest, I thought the girls in Amagami SS look much better than their counterparts in Photokano. Seriously. In terms of character development, Amagami SS rules the day because it has more episodes which means more focus on the couple as compared to Photokano which may feel a little too fast. On the other hand because of this, the former may sometimes feel draggy and the latter would suit for those impatient people wanting to quickly watch the relationship go somewhere. In the end, it mainly boils down to the guy getting the girl. Happy ending? Only in your dating simulation games and anime but so hard in real life… It doesn’t have save game points where you can reset or go back to the point if you screw up. Are dating games an escape from the harsh reality or a way to fight it? Where else can you find a harem in this world and date different girls at the same time?

Photokano

January 19, 2014

A boy with a camera in hand going around taking photos of girls. What’s your first impression? A pervert, right? Well, don’t worry if you think Photokano is going to be some sort of perverted anime because it really isn’t. Those hoping for to see ecchi fanservice shots would be sorely disappointed. Besides, that is not the main focus point of this anime. Many felt this anime which is based on the dating simulation game of the same name to be a photography version of Amagami SS. I found out that Photokano is somewhat a spiritual successor to Amagami SS and thus the many similarities of both series. Even how the story is played out is similar too. A single guy and a bunch of girls. Multi-arc branching format for the episodes. Guy meets girl, spends time with her and in the end becomes a couple. So it’s not that all different than Amagami SS except that our main guy always has a camera in hand to capture those moments and ‘freeze’ them in the form of pictures for eternity. Oh, since the season of Photokano is much shorter than Amagami SS, you’re not going to sit there for like 4 episodes to see the guy get the girl in the end. Although the first few episodes start off as common introduction to all the main girls, the subsequent character arc only lasts for 1 episode! Wow! That’s fast. Are guys with traditional cameras the way to score with chicks?

Episode 1
On the first day of the new school term, Kazuya Maeda makes his way to school and meets his childhood friend, Haruka Niimi, the school’s tennis ace and popular girl. For who knows how long, they have somewhat became distant and drifted apart. During the summer vacation, Maeda got a camera from his dad even though it was not his birthday. Little by little, he starts taking photos and gets interested in the world of photography. His perspective of things changes as he saw everyone as potential photo subjects. One of the photo subjects that got his interest is Mai Sakura from the Rhythmic Gymnastics Club. She is the friend and classmate Maeda’s younger sister, Kanon. While taking photos outside, Maeda spots a girl taking photos of the sky on the rooftop. He is distracted by Nonoka Masaki of the Softball Club. She has a habit of calling Maeda, Darts’un because of his interest in darts once. He has other nicknames based on his past interests that never last but Maeda doesn’t really want to remember such embarrassing details. Noticing his hobby of photography, she hopes he can take a few shots of her but she puts on a silly face. Maeda is then approached by Hiromichi Kudou, the president of the Photography Club. He has observed the way Maeda takes photos and is impressed. He wants him to join the club and brings him to the clubroom. Maeda finds the clubroom odd because it is separated in half with a black curtain. He is introduced to the other members: Itta Nakawaga (specializes in low angle shots – panty shots FTW!), Takashi Azuma (high angle shots – boobs shots FTW!) and the only girl in the club, Yuuko Uchida (stealth photography – melting into the background and snapping shots without the subject suspecting a thing). The view borderline eroticism as art and aesthetics. Uhm, doesn’t that still sound like a pervert?

But they have a policy that the pictures of the subject they take, they must have their permission before displaying them. Kudou knows his good relationship with some of the school’s beauties that include Haruka, Mai and Nonoka and wants him to really join the club to preserve the youthfulness of the female students. Katsumi Kurebayashi enters the room to stop the tempting recruiting. She as its president along with Ruu Narita are members of Photo Club next door (the other side of the curtain, that is). Photography Club and Photo Club? There’s a difference? I’m not sure about the spat they had but Photography Club is the proper and formally recognized club since Photo Club didn’t have enough members. Though Ruu wants to quit the Volleyball Club, Katsumi won’t allow her. She then wants Maeda to join their club. Both presidents pressure Maeda to join their club so what is it going to be? Maeda decides to go with Photography Club. Katsumi must be disappointed (thinking Kudou’s seduction won over him) but I think Ruu is happy because she doesn’t like boys joining the club since she is so infatuated with Katsumi. Later Maeda meets Hikari Sanehara at the stairs and recognizes her as the one taking photos of the sky and the other member of Photo Club. As he goes back to his classroom, he sees a girl, Tomoe Misumi sitting at Haruka’s desk. He notices her crying and she realizes somebody is watching her. She hopes he can keep this a secret and not tell anyone especially Haruka. Promise her that and she will tell him the reason she is doing this.

Episode 2
While Maeda rushes down the stairs, he almost crashes into Aki Muroto, the student council president who has a reputation of enforcing her strict rules. She wastes no time in reprimanding him and to read the school’s handbook. Haruka learns Maeda has joined the Photography Club. She heard their goal was to preserve their youth and allows Maeda to sometimes come take picture of them. Maeda notices Nakagawa and Azuma hiding in the corners trying to take sleazy shots of Haruka so Maeda blocks their perfect view. Maeda is feeling hungry so Kanon gives him something to drink. So happen Muroto was around and she reprimands him for having the guts to eat outside recess time. Handbook rules, blah, blah, blah. When Maeda goes to take pictures of Mai in action, she quickly goes to talk to him because Photography Club members are not allowed to take pictures of them due to their past reputation (taking shots in embarrassing angles). Because she knows Maeda is different from the rest, she’ll talk to her president to get him special permission. Nakagawa is impressed Maeda is able to do so but when he learns Kanon is his little sister, he starts calling him his big brother. Mai-Kanon fan? Later Maeda sees Sanehara trying to take backlighting pictures and gets some tips on how to do so. He receives mail from Kudou for a meeting tomorrow after school.

Maeda happen to stumble upon Haruka in her swimsuit. She forgot her scrunchie and came back to get it. Because she wants to help him out in his hobby (hint: She wants him to look at her too), it is the start of their secret photo shoot. Mmm… Haruka in sexy poses… Maeda remembers Misumi’s explanation of wanting to be like Haruka. She thought she would change and see the world from her perspective if she sat at her place. It didn’t work and she became so envious that she started crying. Maeda understands how she feels. Kudou begins his meeting for their third annual Miss Photogenic Contest. It is the club’s traditional activity whereby they determine who appears the most beautiful in photographs and exhibit them during the cultural festival. It is decided that Haruka is this year’s subject for Miss Photogenic. Maeda has a bad feeling about this. When Maeda is taking out the trash, he sees Muroto trying to sneak in illegally into school. He snaps a shot of her illegal entrance and she starts panicking and falls over him. Muroto can’t put on her strict attitude once Maeda starts blackmailing her that she entered the school illegally for not wanting people to know she is late. Suddenly he feels so good in beating Muroto at her own game. He feels so dominant while Muroto is reduced to a timid mouse. She pleads not to tell this to anyone or her reputation will be ruined. Of course he won’t but he won’t delete the pictures too. Don’t worry. He won’t show them to anyone too. Maeda leaves a very contented man. Because now he’s got dirt on Muroto.

Episode 3
Maeda rushes down the stairs but bumps into Nonoka this time. Not just any unusual bump. Their mouths met! At that speed they clash, just ouch. Maeda, Nakagawa and Azuma are at the swimming pool but no members show up. Good or bad? Maeda wants to get away before something happens but bumps into Rina Yunoki. Nakagawa accidentally pushes him and he got his hands over her boobs. She isn’t mad at him since he didn’t do it on purpose but Nakagawa is envious he gets to experiences the softness. Mai tells Maeda the good news that her president has given the green light and special permission for him to take pictures of their club. Maeda is surprised his Photography Club members now of this (thanks to Uchida’s stealth) so they give him porn magazines as reference materials on how to take those special angle shots. Maeda sees Muroto diving at the swimming pool and learns she was once a competitive diver but stopped due to her work as student council president. Maeda believes her dive is beautiful and wants to take pictures of her in her swimsuit. Of course she is embarrassed by that but he blackmails her about spreading that illegal entry photo. And so Muroto is at his mercy and is forced to do sexy poses for him. Feels good to bully others, no? Muroto approaches them and praises Maeda for being able to get on this side of Muroto. She runs away in embarrassment. Maeda can’t reveal what happened that led to this but as Kudou points out maybe it was because she saw how passionate he was and was reminded of how she used to be. Giving up diving because of her duties was just the tip of the iceberg. She wouldn’t give up something she has been doing for years for such petty reasons. It has something to do with her parents’ expectations.

As Haruka talks to Maeda that she is glad to become his model again, he spots Nakagawa and Azuma cleaning the floor spotless. It’s so shiny that you can see your own reflection so clear. Hmm… He figures they are executing some plan on Haruka so he vows to come up with a plan to stop them. Well, he only got not enough sleep and no plan. In the Cooking Research Society, he helps Rina hold off some falling equipment. When she tries to put them away, her breasts got too close to his face. Faceboobs. Rina is the only member of this club which is more of a hobby than club and Maeda is puzzled how can the student council approve it but she mentions the student council president was quite supportive. Since Maeda’s hands are full, she feeds him with one of her cakes. While cleaning his class, Maeda gets mail from his club members to begin the operation to take Haruka’s pictures and to bring the subject. As Maeda walks with Haruka, he notices how shiny and slippery the floor. He realizes what the plan is and wants Haruka to step back. In his haste to prevent her from moving forward, he slips and slides underneath her skirt. Best view in the world? Well, at least it halted Nakagawa and Azuma’s plans. Kudou has a meeting since getting pictures of Haruka is difficult due to Maeda’s ‘screw ups’. He changes the operation plan. Each of them will keep an eye on the target and find whatever photo opportunity they can. Maeda realizes this is going to be tougher since Uchida will be on her stealth mode. But he is determined to protect Haruka’s panties! I’m sure he does since he got exclusive view of them. Maeda finishes his photo taking of Mai in her club activities. She is excited to practise and get better and hopes he will come watch their practice again.

Episode 4
Kanon clings on to her brother because she is panicking that a bee is after her. She calms down once she finds out the bee is gone. But Maeda seems somewhat happy as he got to smell the chlorine scent from her sister’s swimsuit. WTF. Later Maeda sees Misumi reading a book of poetry outside. She doesn’t want to stand out by reading it in class and wants to be alone. Kanon and Nonoka are playing broomstick baseball in the hallway and are spotted by Muroto. She is about to reprimand them (because sorry won’t do) when they run to Maeda for help. Leave it to big bro. He whispers to Muroto about the illicit entry and instantly she lets them off the hook! Kudou mentions a doujin sales event nearby a shopping mall so they will take this opportunity to snap shots of cosplayers. After school, Maeda talks to Haruka at the shoe locker. His sense starts tingling that the Photography Club members could be nearby hiding to take illegal shots of her. He blocks potential views they might be hiding and leaves with Haruka. Uchida wonders if she has been detected. The duo walk home as Haruka notes how he has become so lively ever since joining Photography Club. Just like how he was into football. Maeda is unsure if he will quit it but for now he wants to get better at it. Next day, Kanon wants her brother to see if something is up her back thigh. Does she realize the implication of this lifting up her skirt for him to see? Before things get dangerous, he takes a picture of it just to show proof there is nothing there. She goes through his photo collection and surprisingly sees shots of Muroto’s swimsuit poses. She is not happy with this cheater because he already has him and he takes shots of other girls?! Buranko? Thankfully he manages to convince her that he lent his camera to Kudou to take those shots.

I personally feel Maeda is going too far and too much because he continues his blackmail on Muroto by making her do his homework! WTF?! Due to her pride, she keeps her promises. As he is about to leave school, he wants to return the porn magazines but they seem to be stuck in his shoe locker as they are so thick. He is surprised when Mai talks to him. The magazines come loose and she offers to pick them up. Oh, what do you know? It’s that sneaky look on her face. Give whatever excuse you can but she is going to report it to her president and this means jeopardizing his special permission to watch their practice. Maeda pleads for a second chance and will do anything for her. Anything? Since it’ll be sad if he can’t come to their practices anymore, she won’t tell. But she’ll keep the magazines too. Now that Mai has got dirt on him, he wonders if this is divine retribution for blackmailing Muroto too much. Serves you right! Maeda and the Photography Club members are at the cosplay event. He gets used to the atmosphere and slowly gets attracted by the growing allure of the camera. Then Maeda starts taking pictures of the Volleyball Club members (strangely it includes some of the main and supporting girls like Nonoka, Misumi, Muroto, Rina, Mai and Kanon) doing their stretching. While snapping away, for the first time he sees Uchida’s eyes from her side profile and notices a mole. He never knew she had nice proportions too.

Episode 5
Maeda is worried when he sees Haruka weak in the hallway. Her chest fells a little pain. She thinks it’s anaemia but Maeda feels it might be more than that. Something that goes way back when they were kids. He carries her to the infirmary. Noticing Nakagawa and Azuma are still trying to take shots of her, he continues to block them. He remembers when they were young, they played football and he accidentally kicked the ball into her chest. Maeda hears some girls gossiping about him and Haruka. They feel they are a weird combination and that Haruka should be better off with someone else and he is not worthy of her. Those comments get to him and he starts feeling depressed. To add to it, he sees the ace striker of the Football Club trying to ask Haruka to go out with him. He even had the guts to tell her to ditch her childhood friend for him. She doesn’t need to answer him now but will wait for her favourable reply. Haruka sees Maeda eavesdropping and assures there is nothing going on between them. Maeda says she should go out with him because they make a great match but Haruka is not happy with his answer and scolds him she doesn’t know what his feelings are. Maeda sinks into further depression. So depressed that his room turns into a pig sty. One day Kanon barges into the Photography Club to ask her brother about Haruka’s whereabouts. She did not answer her phone and skipped practice today without telling anyone. Maeda fears she might have collapsed somewhere and goes all out to search for her. Kudou then texts everyone from Photography and Photo Club to help ensure Miss Photogenic’s safety. They are not having indecent motives but this is to protect her beauty.

Maeda further thinks back that when they were playing football, he accidentally elbowed her chest and that might be when the problem cropped up. Because of that, Maeda wanted them to stop playing football and if she still wants to play, she could join the girls’ football team. But what’s the point in that, right? She threw a tantrum and ran away. As Maeda searches for her, he realizes he didn’t understand a thing or how he felt. Now he won’t hide anymore. He didn’t find her at the playground but is glad she is safe back in her home. He sees her at the window but to his dismay when she closes the curtain, she didn’t see him. Thinking she was ignoring him, he lets out a frustrating scream. Next day at school, Katsumi talks to Haruka that she isn’t the only one who can’t express her feelings. There is somebody else working hard trying to stop people from taking indecent pictures of her. Haruka even gets some advice from Nonoka that she should trust Maeda because she knows him better. Haruka gets all sorts of encouraging texts from her friends but the final one is from Maeda. He wants a second chance and wants to meet her at the playground.

Episode 6
Maeda is glad that Haruka shows up. This plays brings back lots of memories for them. Maeda mentions that he is displaying his photo exhibits at this year’s festival and hope she will come. She will. He manages to take a very natural shot of her and realizes this is the essence of photography. Haruka agrees to become a model for him so as he starts taking pictures of her, Nakagawa and Azuma wants in so he takes her and run. The duo end up having fun at the beach and it would be a waste if we don’t get to see Haruka posing in her swimsuit. When she wants to play beach football, those haunting memories come flooding back to him. He wants to stop this so Haruka knows something is wrong and wants to know if he is still haunted by that incident. He dismisses it and it is more of because they are not kids anymore and has noticed certain things about her body parts. She instantly hugs him. Because she can touch him like this, she doesn’t want him to treat her too preciously and touch her chest. When a girl gives you such permission, don’t waste it! So he did but quickly pulls back after that soft touch. That night, Haruka calls him because she wants to hear his voice and it makes her calm and allows her to sleep better. On the day of the school festival, Maeda brings Haruka to the Photography Club’s exhibit. Kudou announces Maeda as the winner and his winning shot is that natural shot of her. He calls this piece, Wish. They unveil all the other exhibits, which are nothing but photos of her. Kudou admits they have taken all the shots in secrecy but with goodwill so as to capture every ounce of her beauty. That’s why she has the right to approve or not if they should exhibit them. If she turns them down, it means their skills are not yet up to par. Haruka gladly allows them to exhibit her pictures.

After school, Maeda and Haruka hang out at the playground. After a little talk, Maeda finally confesses he has always loved her since they were kids. Happy tears of joy stream down her eyes. She is so happy to hear those words and also confesses she too had always loved him then. After they hug, Maeda asks for permission to kiss. They promise to always be with each other. Flashback when Maeda tried to cajole Haruka out from hiding in the playground, Haruka thought Maeda is more popular and has more friends. If he stayed with her, he will get left out. Maeda asserted he will stay with her even if all his friends leave him. Why? Because he loves her! He didn’t say it once or twice of thrice! Many times! We get it! Haruka crawled out from her hiding and felt happy. She too mentioned she liked him. Maeda thought she should act more girly and cuter because at first glance she looked more like a boy. He promised to marry her if she becomes really cute. And so she began her journey to become really cute just for him. Haruka narrates when she was alone, Maeda chose her over everyone else and tried to save her. Thinking back, it felt embarrassing just recalling them. She is glad to have turned those childhood feelings into memories and now a new love is born. As long as they’re together, they’ll always create more love because she really, really loves him. Several photo shots especially Wish is posted on Haruka’s room wall. Just one thing bugs me. Didn’t they remember confessing to each other when they were young? When they confessed as high schoolers, it felt like as though it was their first time. So did they really forget? Unless confessing your love as a kid doesn’t really count because you don’t really understand what it means.

Episode 7
Maeda sees Sanehara eating alone. Because she doesn’t know how to eat a hamburger, he teaches her. Seriously? Anyway he looks like a clown doing so… One day Maeda notices Sanehara, unlike him who likes taking pictures of people, she takes pictures of everything but people. He requests a shot of her smiling but refuses. Come to think of it, he has never seen her smile. Maeda continues to ‘stalk’ her as she takes pictures alone. He finds out she dislikes taking pictures of people because when you do so, they put up a fake smile for the camera. Maeda assures he isn’t hiding anything from her and she agrees since he acts on his whims. By the way, that’s not a compliment. And so begins his ‘quest’ to make Sanehara change her heart. First, he dresses up in a funny flower suit (including an equally funny act) but she’s not buying it. One day, he notices that she may have a thing for stray cats. So he gets the Photography Club members to help out in his plan and even Katsumi suggested where he could get a cat suit. When Sanehara returns to the site with the stray cats, they are all gone because Uchida attracted them away with her catnip (they somewhat cling onto Nakagawa and Azuma, preventing them from taking their specialized shots on her). Maeda dressed up in a funny cat outfit starts begging her to take photos of him. He is so funny that she starts laughing. Sanehara agrees to accompany Maeda to the amusement park to return the cat suit he borrowed. While there, they have fun with the attractions. Sanehara’s expression is so dead while Maeda is scared in just about everything. Really. Because he throws a challenge who can have the most fun, well, well. It seems Sanehara too knows how to have fun and put on a fitting expression. Maeda is still a chicken, though.

So much fun she had that I bet you never seen her smile this much. She wants him to accompany her to somewhere. He must be thinking a love hotel. Too bad, it’s just the hilltop so she could borrow his camera and take pictures of the starry sky. She explains during her middle school years, her girl classmates suddenly wanted to be her friend. Before she knew it, she became part of their circle and enjoyed doing girly things she never thought she had interest in. However she found out she was just a convenient girl. They became her friend because they wanted somebody to feel superior over. When they started ordering her around, she called it quits and stopped hanging out with them. But that’s when the bullying and ignoring started. Sanehara was even framed an accused of stealing a classmate’s wallet. Worse, the teacher suspected her from the start. Ever since then, she was ostracized and hated. And when she saw that kind of snicker on their face, it was so much different than the smile when they were friends. She felt sad and started to hate smiles. Maeda couldn’t forgive those bullies and she views him as a kind person. She trusts his smile and Maeda hopes she could smile more often because he likes it. Now that her heart is open, Maeda becomes the first person in a long time that Sanehara decides to take a picture of. They hang out together to a point that they even start taking point blank shots of each other. Sanehara agrees to go out with him to the beach and what’s the point in this? Nice photo shots of Sanehara in her bikini and poses, that’s what. Many of the photos end up on her personal board at home. But the one she framed up was when he first took a shot at her eating a hamburger. Funny…

Episode 8
Maeda snaps a shot of Muroto diving. As she leaves to get a kickboard, the teacher swimming with her tells Maeda that they are helping each other out. In exchange to earn credentials to teach in an elementary school (I guess she needed to learn to swim too), she is helping Muroto to study and take some load off her shoulders as she quit the swimming club to fulfil her student council president duties. One rainy day, Maeda finally took shelter in the school’s shoe locker area but is soaked. Same case for Muroto. He snaps a shot of her. She is not impressed but a word shut her up: Illegal entry. Magic word. He wants to take poses of her and because of that blackmail, she embarrassingly agrees. Unknown to them, Kudou is observing. Next day, he catches her depressed on the rooftop. She even allows him to take a picture of her skipping class and use it for his blackmail! Something is wrong. He forces her to come with him and takes her to the place where she entered school illegally. Now they’re going to exit school illegally! Why is he doing this? Because he doesn’t like it when she is not herself. Besides, he will delete the illegal entry photos. I’ve got a feeling he might use the illegal exit photos instead! Nakagawa and Azuma spot them and tail them. After hitting the arcade, they rest at the crepe show. She tells her past that her grades in elementary school weren’t great and hated study. But she had to follow her father footsteps to become a doctor. So she studied day and night and even on holidays till she reached to top. She was happy. The point is, although she pretends to be a smart student, she isn’t. And now she is at her limit. She feels she is not cut out to be a student council president or doctor. An elderly lady passing by recognizes Muroto. She recounts how she saved an old man collapsed at this shopping district. Because the people were panicking as they couldn’t find any emergency room to take him, Muroto who happened to be there made arrangements to her family’s hospital and accompanied him there. The woman praises her but she seems pretty down that she isn’t the good person people think she is. But nevertheless the woman is very grateful to her. Then it hit Maeda. Wasn’t that the day Muroto was late and entered school illegally? Nakagawa and Azuma want to move in but were stopped by Kudou. He tells them to leave those two alone as breaking their world would be in bad taste. Capturing the true Muroto is now Maeda’s job.

The duo had more fun together skipping school. So happy that she allows him he need not delete her photos anymore. Since she has gotten over her guilt, Maeda realizes the barrier between them had gone and before he knows it, asks her out on a date. Muroto gladly goes out with him and at the dolphin show, Maeda states his intentions he wants to take photos of her diving before she quit the swimming club. Muroto mentions she started diving because she wanted to be like dolphins. When she was young and depressed, her father took her to a dolphin show and all her sadness was blown away. Maeda wonders why Muroto didn’t tell the truth on the day of her illegal entry. She didn’t answer. Later at the hilltop, Muroto is grateful to him for that illegal exit. She doesn’t mind if he finds out the real her. Thanks to his encouragement, she is looking at things at a new perspective. Maeda confesses he loves her and she vows to become a doctor since it’s her dream. She wants him to hold her as part of her encouragement. They confess to each other (again) and he is sad that despite her graduating soon, he wants to be by her side. She suggests taking her out again. Soon, Muroto rejoins the swimming club and Maeda snaps a picture of her with a pretty smile. That shot becomes the main photo exhibit at the cultural festival. Time passes, Muroto studied hard, got into her first choice university as a valedictorian. Her hard work paid off and on her graduation day after her speech, once again she tells Maeda how much she loves him because he was the only one who knows the real her and made her smile.

Episode 9
Maeda helps Nonoka with her softball as her training partner. In return, she agrees to be his photography model since he is having a hard time getting people to agree to do gravure shots. Since he starts learning more about photography, she too tries to increase her knowledge in modelling. Then that fateful day when their mouths clashed at the stairs. Despite she treats him like normal, deep down she is bothered with it. One day she calls him to the roof to throw him a challenge letter. A challenge of love! What gives?! She mentions Haruka has always been his type of girl since she is more feminine than her and that she doesn’t stand a chance. Since Maeda is dense, she tells it straight to his face that she loves him ever since middle school. He is always fun to be with. Though he has Haruka, it would be sad now not to pursue it since she had her first kiss with the guy she loves. She pleads for a chance to become a girl he can love. This includes telling her anything what she lacks and she will try to fix it. I guess you don’t want to disappoint a girl so just like any normal guy would, Maeda accepts her challenge. But it’s not going to be as easy as she thinks. She thought of easily showing him her slip but was told off about the appealing factor had she acted naturally embarrassed. As a sportswoman, she eats a lot. Any guy would freak out if their woman eats a lot, right? Losing more points…

Since Nonoka requests a rematch, Maeda suggests the beach. Well, you know what this is. He takes lots of good shots of her in her bikini and as they stop to rest at the beach house, Nonoka suggests posing more daring stuffs like in the nude or hand bras. A couple of delinquents overheard them and want in. Maeda vows to protect her so he turns the tables as distraction before the duo make a run. The delinquents are stopped by the very muscular Mr Universe beach house owner. As they catch their breath, Maeda says he doesn’t want shots of her like that and has already taken lots of good natural pictures of her. So this is what she has been reading up about modelling? But still, she demonstrates her hand bra and this sends an electrifying stimulation to his brain. A guy will always be a guy. When Maeda is cleaning the clubroom, he spots Uchida’s cosplay outfit. He starts thinking, could it be her that was the one cosplaying upfront then? There’s that similarity… One day as Maeda helps Nonoka with her training, she seems down. Her problem is that she doesn’t want to master her rising pitch. Because if she does, there will be no more reason for him to be together. However he doesn’t think those memories they made will disappear even if she masters them and will find something new to do together. She requests him to take a shot of her throwing her air pitch. He snaps a perfectly natural pose of her doing that. Soon, she finally masters that move and their training ended. One evening, Maeda calls her to the rooftop to deliver his verdict. He concedes defeat. He has never realized such a wonderful girl was beside him and confesses he loves her. Don’t worry, this isn’t a dream. Those tears of joy are for real too. So wonderful she is that he thought he barely deserves her. It is her honest and straightforward feelings that gradually won him over. Now he realizes he loves her more than anyone in the world. Here comes the hug. But no kiss? And so they become a couple. She is grateful to him for giving her so much strength. Pictures of the shots he took fill her room wall and that perfect natural one all framed up, besides the softball league champion’s plaque.

Episode 10
Mai requests a favour from Maeda. She loves fried stuffs but because she is on a diet, she wants him to eat the pork cutlet for her and describe how it tastes like. At first he didn’t want to do it as he is full but the porn magazines blackmail… Start eating! Because he wasn’t descriptive enough, she makes him eat another bowl! Now he is getting narrative like those cooking shows! And now for desserts… Oh God… Can he stomach it all? Blackmail… You know the drill… Is this worth it just to take her pictures? Maybe. On one practice, Mai accidentally bites his arm because she thought it was fried stuff! It’s getting to her. Maeda is there to capture shots of her during her gymnastics qualifiers. However she becomes clumsy and falters several times. She looks depressed so Maeda yells to her not to give up. It gave her the motivation to carry on till the end. Kanon notices Mai still down so she fakes a fever so that Maeda can go take Mai out to the pool amusement park and cheer her up. I guess this is where the obligatory swimsuit photo shoots are. Nakagawa and Azuma didn’t like Maeda hogging the gymnastic beauty but when a pretty woman calls to them in hopes they can retrieve her stray ball, they both fight over it till the ball deflated. So much for impressing chicks. Mai didn’t qualify for the gymnastics finals but she can’t be moping over her failure as she’ll never find beauty this way.

Maeda continues to hang out with Mai and take more shots of her whether she is practising or doing other stuff. I guess she trusts him enough to return those porn magazines back. With it, a note stating that even though he is a pervert, she still loves him. He’s the happiest guy in the world but to his dismay realizes Uchida has also seen this. One evening, Maeda finds Mai at his doorstep. She is here to return Kanon’s DVD. He invites her in but he didn’t see this one coming because she gets cheeky enough to search his room so as to know where he hides the porn magazines. If he has nothing to hide, why act so guilty? Anyway in his haste to stop her, he trips and accidentally pushes her onto his bed. Their face is so close… Could have gotten a lot steamier had not Kanon return home and barge in. They manage to regain their composure in time but Kanon smells something fishy. The days continue. Mai and Maeda hanging out together. Gymnastic practices. Photo shots of her. Just like dating. Mai lets him know that on the day he shouted to her to not give up, her heart skipped a beat and she realized she wasn’t alone. She laments if she wasn’t petite size. On the contrary, Maeda finds her attractive the way she is now and they can seek their own visions of beauty. She will do just that and hopes he can stay by her side to cheer her on. That is when Maeda confesses he loves her because of her tenacity, honesty and cuteness (lolicon!). She also confesses she loves him and they embrace. Just like before, they end up doing stuffs together but only difference is that they are now official couples.

Episode 11
Nakagawa and Azuma want to take pictures of the girls in the pool because Rina is among them. But their human tower isn’t going to work because the one below is shouldering all the weight and can’t move. Maeda is doing a recruitment poster for the Cooking Research Society but it turns out like Rina’s personal ad. The good aroma smell must have led Maeda into this fateful meeting with Rina. He learns she is trying to come up with a new recipe for the cultural festival and also if she doesn’t recruit 5 new members, her club will be disbanded. Maeda offers to help by taking photos of her cooking. One day Maeda enters the clubroom to see Rina trying to bend a spoon! Shutter chance! Is she trying to be an ESP too? Actually she is so bored that she’s resorted to this. Soon the duo go hunting for a four leaf clover as part of Rina’s new dish. Can they really find it? Well, Maeda saw her ass first… But anyway, he finds it! Miracle! Their heads bump when they get excited they find the leaf. On the way back, Rina wonders why Uchida is spying on them. Wait a minute. Her stealth mode seen through? Because she is always alone, she invites her to come cook with them. And so ‘defeated’ Uchida helps out with the cooking while Maeda perfects his angle shots on the food. Rina asks Maeda out to the amusement park seeing she needs a change in pace to get ideas for her new dish. However her little sister, Erina insisted in tagging along so this won’t be a date of just the 2 of them. Erina is a little annoying. She almost repeats and imitates Rina’s actions. If she wasn’t this cute, she would have been 100% annoying. Erina cheekily notes how they are like newlyweds because they blush too much and Maeda’s comment that Rina can be a good wife due to her cooking.

Rina has finally got an idea of what she wants to create. She explains to Maeda how Muroto allowed the creation of her club despite her being the only member. Honestly she didn’t mind being the only one or the club getting disband. But the thought of brainstorming like this with him got her thinking that she wants others to learn how fun cooking can be. Finally Rina has completed her sunflower burger (the clover for the finishing touches). Maeda takes a picture of it and manages to submit the poster in time before the deadline for the festival. Maeda visits Rina’s magic café during the festival. Everyone else is surprised that the legendary cosplayer, Alice is here to help out. Something tells me this is Uchida because she seems to be interacting casually with Rina. After the festival ends, Maeda wants to talk to Rina. First she relays him the good news that she has found new members for the club. She thanks him for his effort. Without it, this day would never have come. Then Rina beats Maeda first in confessing her love. I guess he is surprised too. Though, he wanted to go first (that’s why he called her out). After he confesses his love, they both embrace. Rina continues to teach the new members her sunflower hamburger signature as photos of her sit in the club’s board. Most of them Rina watering her sunflower garden.

Episode 12
Maeda spots Misumi doing funny faces in a pond’s reflection. Embarrassing, no? Since rain is coming, he shares his umbrella. While taking shelter, Misumi explains she doesn’t like to stand out and gets nervous when people stare at her. She considers herself plain unlike him who is outgoing and lively but Maeda doesn’t think so as they may be more alike than they think. Next day, Misumi hands him cupcakes as thanks for yesterday. He wants to take shots of her but she refuses, citing that plain excuse. But I suppose she relents when he says she is pretty instead. Happy? One day, Maeda receives a love letter from Misumi in his shoe box to meet at the rooftop. Could it be? His heart beats when she wants to tell him something. She will be transferring away after the cultural festival. Maybe his heart almost stopped. Due to her father’s job, she has been changing schools since small and thought if she never stood out and no one knew she existed when she disappeared, it would be for the best. That’s why she wants him to leave her alone and it’ll be a nuisance if he keeps hanging out with her. However he wants to stay by her side till then and make memories. In that case, she requests to be her friend. Silly, they already are. For their first memory, he takes a picture of her and she makes a ‘V’ sign. As the days pass, Maeda takes more pictures of her and Misumi tries her hands at all sorts of sports like tennis, softball and gymnastics. Klutz…

Now for some private memories of their own. Nothing fishy, mind you. Maeda and Misumi are out together at the beach. She mentions about the time she sat at Haruka’s desk. The actual reason she did that wasn’t out of envy but she was thinking how to repay her kindness. Now she has her confidence, she thinks of telling everyone of her transfer. And so the class is stunned to hear this announcement so Misumi requests them to make memories with her before she leaves. Before you know it, the days pass quickly and everyone had fun at the cultural festival. Misumi enjoys everyone’s company at the amusement park. Since the rest don’t want Maeda hogging all the shots of her, they suggest doing a group photo. Misumi returns by stunning everyone in a bold bikini. Plain isn’t the word to describe it… On the day Misumi and her family are about to leave, Maeda has compiled all the photos and put it in an album so she will remember this school and city. He manages to hand it to her at the train station and points out there aren’t pictures of himself in it. Because he doesn’t want to be just another memory to her. He wants to see her always. Guess what this means? After they are done hugging, the rest of the other girls arrive to see her off. They hope she will come back here sometimes. Maeda goes a step further. He will come to see her, text her every day and will work to save up so he could go see her. Misumi goes through the album on the train as Maeda narrates how he fell in love with her through the viewfinder.

Episode 13
Maeda is nervous. Because Kanon wants to bath with him! Well, she won’t be naked but in her swimsuit. Disappointed? But he’s not naked too and in his trunks. When Kanon won the lottery’s grand prize of a trip for 2 to Europe, she gave it to her parents since they never had their honeymoon. This means the siblings will be home alone. This word reaches the ears of the Photography Club members so they think Maeda should take this chance to take photos of her. Maybe he’ll see her in a different light if he treats her as a photography subject. Maeda can’t stop thinking about Kanon and soon starts taking pictures of her. He suggests a heart stopping expression. Like as though she is thinking about the one she loves. After a little thought, she puts up that cute expression that even sends Maeda blushing. Didn’t realize her sister has this cute side, eh? Suddenly he feels jealous. Is there really a guy she loves? Nakagawa and Azuma are at Maeda’s house on pretence to get back the loaned porn magazines so that they could see Kanon in an apron. And here she comes in one! Stunning? She also hands them back the magazine because she knows where her brother keeps them. Stunned? That night Maeda can’t sleep as he keeps thinking of little sister. He remembers an album he is keeping full of Kanon photos as a kid. He thinks she might not remember the bell he gave her. When Maeda sees Kanon talking to other guys, he feels jealous and runs away. Kanon picks him up sitting at the river bed and they go home in the rain. They soak in the cram hot bathtub together and wish times like these would last forever. Maeda is in a dilemma. Should he tell her now that they are blood related? If he does, he fears their relationship will change.

During summer, Maeda takes Kanon to tthe beach. They see Katsumi and Ruu as a beach volleyball team and cheer on them. Although they lost, Ruu thanks them for supporting. They also see Katsumi talking with her boyfriend. Ruu notes her unrequited love but is nevertheless happy to just be by her side. Kanon can understand that feeling. As Kanon is making sand castles, this prompts Maeda to remember how they first met. Kanon was lost at the beach looking for her father (her mom was already in the stars). He helped her look till they are reunited. When Maeda reunites with his mom, she mentions the big coincidence because they are going to be a new family. So when their parents remarry, Maeda and Kanon become siblings on that day. Back in present time, Maeda is surprised that Kanon still remembers everything on that day. She too didn’t realize her brother always remembered it. She thanks him for being a good big brother and tried hard to be his little sister. They admit they were too scared to bring up the topic of blood relation for fear their relationship would change. With that behind them, Maeda gives Kanon the photo album. Dad made him promise to hold on to it till it was the right time to give it to her. Kanon mentions she wants him to have her first love letter. However she wants him to hold on to it and only read it after she graduates. By then, she hopes to call him by his first name. It dawned to Maeda that the person she loves she was thinking then was him. In her eyes, he was her ideal guy who protected her since young. That’s why she looked him in the eye and confessed. Now that they have gotten over their sibling barrier, Maeda is brave enough to say Kanon is the cutest girl in the world. Likewise, Kanon confesses her love to him. Is that as in brotherly or more? And soon Kanon graduates. She happily hugs big brother when she sees him still with her love letter.

Say… Cheesy!
Oh, really? It already ended? For real? Well, I must say that there isn’t really anything spectacular in the ending(s) because we all know that Maeda would somehow end up with the girl. That’s why there is no element of surprise. Because there are 8 different girls to deal with and 8 different endings, each in a subsequent episode consecutively, it felt like the anime ‘ended’ 8 times over. Thus when the series ended for real, there wasn’t any sort of satisfying feel because too much ‘ending’ has already made me immune to it all. Just like Amagami SS, once the goal of ending up with the girl is done, we move on to the next.

One thing good and bad about the single episode focus per girl is that it saves a lot of time. It’s like you get rid of all the other details in between, put in the fast forward, show important bits of the moments before finally reaching the finish line. It’s good for those who are somewhat impatient and do not want to sit through 4 + 2 episodes (in reference to Amagami SS’ season 1 and 2 respective seasons for the number of episodes focused on a heroine) just to see the guy get the girl in the end. Everything can be done in a single episode so if you’re the kind who watches this show weekly, you don’t have to have memory recalling problems to remember what happened previously. Because of the single episode per girl focus, there is not much development between Maeda and the girl in focus. Therefore it makes their relationship looks not deep. You don’t get to feel the impact that they deservingly deserve each other in the end because everything is so quick. That’s why spending time together in a relation is very important. So with everything ‘fast forward’ just to fit in the 24 minutes of screen time (minus the common arcs), in some ways it makes their relationship feel ‘cheap’. The romance a little cheesy. When I sat through and watched both seasons of Amagami SS, no doubt sometimes it feels like a drag but because of the time spent watching them, I could feel that there was something cultivating between the characters. But in Photokano, before everything could settle down, it has already ended and we move on to the next girl. Makes it feel like it’s some sort of speed dating, huh?

Just like in Amagami SS too, each of the girls have their own issues and thus that’s why we have Maeda as the hero to help solve them and they end up being a pair. Like I’ve said, the short focus duration on the girls doesn’t leave a lasting impact and thus the issues our heroines in Photokano face also feels shallow. Although Uchida is not one of the main heroine, I really thought she should have an arc of her own (heck, little sister Kanon even got her own) because among the girls, she is the most amusing and mysterious one due to her stealth-like nature. It is a shame that she didn’t really get her own arc because there are some moments in the anime that seem to give her a little focus. Like as though they were teasing there was going to be an Uchida arc somewhere. Perhaps she didn’t get one so as to maintain the mysterious feel to this lady. If you get to know her (via Maeda of course), then it wouldn’t be fun anymore because well, you know more about her and that takes away the romance of her mystery. Therefore, really a shame that there is no Uchida arc because I think she would really look pretty if her eyes were more visible and that she also has the nice proportions to go with. Definitely a photogenic person for those obligatory swimsuit moments. Besides, isn’t she that legendary cosplayer Alice? And is her stealth ability for real? She can be the next generation Sadako with this skill coupled in with her fluffy bangs that cover her eyes. Maybe that’s why she maintains this sort of look. Nobody would really notice her. If she ties up her hair and reveal her face, it would definitely be a crowd puller.

As for the other girls like Katsumi and Ruu, it made me wonder what their role in this anime is for. So much so I’m beginning to wonder the significant of the Photo Club to begin with. I was expecting some sort of rivalry between the almost similar clubs but in the end, they were just forgettable to the point that you may forget they even exist at all. Katsumi isn’t one of the heroines but I can imagine what it is like if there is to be an arc on her. Rival club members dating? Ruu is just probably there for a little yuri comic relief because it is obvious she is in love with Katsumi but just that her love is not returned. Imagine if she had her own arc, it would be really interesting to see the girl in this series who is the least interested in Maeda to fall in love in him. Nakagawa and Azuma are of course the clowns of the series and the main dish for comic relief. Each time they want to take (perverted) pictures of our heroines, they are somehow put a stop in their tracks by Maeda or some unfortunate event. Almost could have been the 3 Stooges if they had another comical accomplice but I guess both of them are already enough to handle. Kudou himself is a big mystery too. Not to say he is similar to Uchida as he doesn’t have any stealth mode, it’s like he is watching everyone from the shadows and as the president of the Photography Club, he sees great potential in Maeda and from time to time do offer his indirect assistance.

The art and drawing feels generic too. You thought that with camera and photography as the main theme, the backgrounds and scenery would be superbly nice. Well, not really. I just don’t feel the breath-taking beauty. The characters of course have the bishoujo feel since it is adapted from a dating game, the girls would definitely look pretty and cute just like how you would expect in your typical conventional Japanese anime girls. But the guy somewhat looks generic (isn’t that the case in many of such animes?). He looks plain enough for me to pass him of as the main guy in Amagami SS, Junichi. Just take away his blazer and put a camera in his hands. On a trivial note, the next episode preview is narrated by Kudou. In a very passionately and ambiguously perverted sounding matter. It makes you wonder if his true goal is to capture the girls’ beauty or some sort of twisted perverted fetish. Also, there is some sort of narrative about memories, meetings, love and fate/destiny in regards to photography or pictures from Maeda or the girls either at the beginning or the end of the episode but I don’t really remember or understand them. I’m too much a simpleton to understand all that crap. When you meet, you meet. Love is just love and destiny is just destiny.

To say that this series is void of fanservice is inaccurate. As you may have already noticed that there are some scenes that cater to give us a little fanservice but stops short of being anything erotic or ecchi. Especially for every character arc, notice there will always be a beach or swimsuit moment? I’m sure those girls look lovely in the poses too. And there is that new teacher, Momoko Ootani. She got boobs so big that it might put Lara Croft to shame. Mind boggling gravity defying pair, if I should say. It’s a shame that she didn’t get her own character arc but I suppose for morality reasons, you can’t have a student confessing to a teacher and turn this normal series into a controversial forbidden love, can’t you? Yeah. Maybe it’s a good thing she doesn’t have her own arc. Because somehow I can only imagine it will turn out into an erotic hentai one.

For the voice acting part, I guess they are pretty decent. Some of the seiyuus are recognizable like Kane Itou as Haruka (Sanae in Shinryaku! Ika Musume), Mai Nakahara as Muroto (Mai in Mai-HiME) and surprisingly despite always not being able to identify Chiwa Saito’s voice for a long time, I recognized her here as Nonoka. Probably it’s because I was just fresh in hearing a recent anime she was in, Mamejiro from Blood Lad. However I didn’t realize it was Miyuki Sawashiro’s voice behind Misumi. She sounded really different from what I remember her as. As her character isn’t really one of her usual roles that could make me identify with her voice, the shy sweet girl role was somewhat sounding like Haruka from Uta No Prince-sama Maji Love 1000%. Nobuhiko Okamoto as Azuma feels like a very lethargic version of his Niizuma of Bakuman. Other casts include Nobunaga Shimazaki as Maeda (Shido in Date A Live), Kaori Mizuhashi as Sanehara (Mami of Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica), Hisako Kanemoto as Mai (Ika in Shinryaku! Ika Musume), Asuka Oogame as Rina (Erio in Denpa Onna To Seishun Otoko), Mariya Ise as Kanon (Stocking in Panty And Stocking With Garterbelt), Ayahi Takagi as Uchida (Megumi in Special A), Hikaru Midorikawa as Kudou (Lancer in Fate/Zero), Minoru Shiraishi as Nakagawa (Sakamoto in Nichijou) and Kaoru Mizuhara as Katsumi (Gisen in Hyakka Ryouran Samurai Girls).

The opening theme is Koi Suru Lens by Kaori Hayato. I didn’t really find it appealing as it sounds more like a mix between anime pop with sultry lounge jazz. May sound serene and relaxing with its pace but I still didn’t quite like it. Smile F is the ending theme and despite being the only one, there are many versions of it. That’s right. Because there are character arcs, this means the female character of that story will be singing it. Basically the tune, pace and style of the song doesn’t change. It is just that the female seiyuu is just singing it and adds nothing special to it. Therefore there is nothing unique that makes me want to hear it again. Not to say that their voice sucks or anything, it is just that their singing voice does not reflect the character they play so it almost sounded the same. Yes, I initially thought it was the same person singing the song and only much later did I find out that there were different people singing the same song for the episodes. During the common arc, it is like one big girl group singing this song.

People in general these days no longer use cameras with lens anymore due to the current fad of Smartphones that embeds camera features inside them. Ultimately it isn’t the kind of tool that you use to take pictures because it is the contents of the photos that really matter. Humans have selective memory and can’t remember every moment in their lives. What better way than to ‘freeze’ those memories forever (if not, for a very long time) in the form of pictures. Because a picture is worth a thousand words or a hundred tales, sometimes just a single short glance at one would bring back long forgotten or nostalgic memories. It brings you back in time and relives those moments. Well, provided if they are good moments and not those bad and embarrassing moments you would want to forget. Even so, you can’t deny that those moments actually happened, can’t you? This anime may be a little odd in the sense that a camera was the main equipment in picking up chicks. I guess Smartphones are so common these days that the wow factor is gone. Goes to show that sometimes sticking to traditional stuffs can really impress. Does this mean I can score better if I take out my Collodion camera? (Google it if you don’t know this ancient invention). And remember… Always snap photographs responsibly.