Brighter Than The Dawning Blue Notes
I mainly picked up Brighter Than The Dawning Blue because of the combination of it being on sale and having “blue” in the title, because so far I’ve seen several unexpectedly good series based entirely on those two criteria. I admit, though, that I like the setup: Everyguy ends up living under the same roof with the Princess of the Moon on account of her doing a homestay with his family to improve Earth-Moon relations, since his sister is an aide for the President of Earth.
Princess Feena is saccharine sweet as a protagonist, but gets credit for being much tougher and more practical than most characters of the sort. Tatsuya is also pretty bland, but not entirely unlikable, and also is rather less of a weenie than most teenage male protagonists. (He’s also voiced by Susumu Chiba, who I like, except that I kept having to shake the feeling that I was watching Welkin from Valkyria Chronicles in high school, not helped at all by the fact that he looks a bit like a younger Gunther.)
The only memorable thing at the beginning are a few bits of unexpectedly off-kilter comedy—most notably an Aliens parody, some Indiana Jones references, and the tendency of Tatsuya’s younger sister to brain-freeze in the face of stress. Otherwise it’s mostly mushy romance with scattered bits of comedy.
The romance does get credit for coming to the front by the midpoint of the series, and for the point of it being about making a difficult relationship work rather than two awkward people avoiding each other for an entire series until finally getting together at the end. Â It’s a much more interesting dynamic to me, and the series handles that end of it relatively well, albeit with a lot of sugar and a moderate amount of shallow silliness. Overall that was probably its strongest point, though.
That’s not what made it memorable, though. That was what happened after about ten episodes of wholly mediocre lightly comedic romance with a bit of sci-fi twist (spoiler): It turns out that the deadpan flying girl who’s been hanging around being mildly mysterious through the whole series is a literal ghost of the war between the Moon and Earth possessing somebody.
There had been absolutely nothing supernatural up to that point, and suddenly we have a metaphor given form and shooting giant energy blasts trying to kill the main character with nothing but maybe three minutes of exposition by way of explanation. Which wasn’t even necessary to the plot, apart from an excuse for moralizing monologue. And it only lasted a single episode! I can’t honestly think of any other series I’ve seen derail itself quite that completely, that quickly, for that random of a reason.
It also throws an utterly random Deus Ex Machina into the finale, but that turned out to be a pretty good gag (and probable Crystal Skull reference), so I’ll let it slide.
Anyway, it wasn’t an embarrassingly bad show, and mixes things up at least a bit from the most generic sort of sappy romance, but it was entirely forgettable except for the bizarre detour toward the end. Not one of the best “blue”s, to be sure.