I really do hate it when an anime seems so promising and then it’s just not what you expected at all. I’ve said this a couple of times recently, but I think this show is probably the best example of it yet.
I was so excited to start Konbini Kareshi (or Convenience Store Boy Friends). The synopsis on MyAnimeList made it sound like another adorable school romance show along the lines of Tsurezure Children.
Six high school students’ lives around the convenience store on their way from school; they talk about their lives and meet girls they end up falling for.
From this synopsis, I thought we’d have a variety of couples in a simple slice-of-life romance. Instead, we got two couples in a rather boring show where, if it wasn’t for the last three episodes, it would be a complete disappointment. Although, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying it’s a good show by any means, so, well, let me explain.
To begin with, it’s like any other romance drama based in a school. This, I don’t have a problem with – it was in the synopsis, it was to be expected. However, what I have a problem with is the fact that synopsis states that there are six high school students. In reality, there are four. These are the only characters you really see and the others just appear when there’s no way the main four can be used, which is annoying, really, considering that there was so much potential for more drama to be introduced using the relationships between these characters and the protagonists.
But, instead of this potential greatness, the first half of the anime focuses on Towa (the blonde guy) trying to get with Mami (the girl with glasses), whilst the second half focuses on Haruki (the other guy) trying to get with, well, the other girl. It’s as simple as that and, really, nothing else happens.
That is, however, until the last three episodes. I won’t go into too much detail about what happens, but it was a story line that I finally got invested in. I didn’t particularly care about the sports festival or how Towa struggles with Mami, but the last three episodes certainly did make me as intrigued as I was with other high-school romances such as Your Lie in April. I needed more of this. It needed to come earlier in the show. It packs in so much character development that, without it, the show lacks. The characters, because of this, are just pretty much, well….boring.
And that’s the adjective I’d also use to describe the animation too. With the show coming from Studio Pierrot, I wasn’t particularly surprised to see the art style being one I’d normally pair with a shounen. Although there are some aspects that are pretty, the animation and art really is quite rugged at times, something that often looks out of place to me personally within the slice-of-life romance genres.
The OST is an element of the show I did like. Background music was simple, as was the ED, but the OP is certainly something I’ve discussed before. In fact, this was probably my favourite part of the show. CellChrome’s track certainly still makes me jam and, now that I’ve finished the show, I kinda just want to see what else they have in their discography. (It seems like they’ve done an OP for Detective Conan recently, so that’s a good sign!)
So, would I recommend the show? Eh, probably not. There are certainly better shows out there, so I’d probably only watch this if you’ve got literally nothing else to watch. It’s fairly average and only gains a point really for the last three episodes and, even then, it ends rather poorly.