Remake Our Life!
by Mercedez Clewis,
How would you rate episode 4 of
Remake Our Life! ?
Episode 4, “Consider What You Can Do,” gives me one of my favorite time-honored tropes: a summer-themed episode at the beach. Only this time, it's not all fun in the sun for the cast: it's almost all work right from the first second. Poor Kyoya is in the middle of a bit of everything, struggling to get his classmates to work together on yet another film project.
And of course, with a beach episode comes a lot of fanservice, though the show seems to be leaning more into Kyoya as an actual 18-year-old rather than as a 28-year-old man reliving an alternative life in an 18-year-old body. Because of that, I found that the fanservice we get—it's mostly your typical beach scenario titillation with a bikini top coming undone thrown in—felt less smarmy and more like mid-00s anime antics.
That, in and of itself, is interesting seeing as our story takes place in 2000s: it further sticks the show into a modern-day time capsule of sorts, drawing on gags that I definitely remember from my teenage years as an anime fan. It's fitting, really, and while fanservice in this show isn't something that makes me go “AWOOGAH,” I do think it will probably be the most bust-forward Remake Our Life! gets from here on out. Plus, it's mostly frontloaded, giving way to a thoughtful episode about everyone who's not Kyoya, which is refreshing because it's nice to see someone else in the spotlight this early on.
One of the most intriguing things about Remake Our Life! is how it's starting to really explore Kyoya's studies. It's hitting those Shirobako-esque notes I mentioned wanting to see way back in the premiere. Though I think comparing this to Shirobako is a disservice to both series. They're different, and that's good. Shirobako feels like watching adults find their footing in a field they've got experience in; Remake Our Life! feels like watching my past self fumble through college and trying to be young adult. I suppose that's where a lot of my positive feelings towards this show stem from: it's a blast from the past that feels very grounded, especially since Kyoya's time-travelling shifts from the forefront in lieu of advancing the plot. Instead it offers a solid transition episode that hints at a lot of dynamic growth for all of the characters involved in Team Kitayama Plus.
That said, the show is still at that “not yet” level of development: I think I'll probably be saying that until mid-season, if I'm being honest. In truth, it feels like a lot of things are being set up: proverbial dominos that, when they fall, we'll get a bigger, grander picture in their place. It's just engaging enough that I want to see where it goes, especially for characters like Nanako. I'd previously (and rightfully) complained that she had weak characterization, and while she's still somewhat flat, the revelation that she wanted to be a singer feels fitting. Once again, the show is really pulling on its mid-aughts college setting: everything feels so charged when you're a college student, and Nanako's mini-arc in this episode definitely has that really enticing energy. She's quite the compelling character, and I found her pain intensely relatable as a creative.
I continue to low-key ship Kyoya and Eiko pretty hard, in large part because I love their back and forth. And yet, because in Kyoya's past life (past existence…past timeline?) he and Eiko were coworkers under the same company, I get the feeling that like a lot of my shipping wishes, this one won't come true: I can't say why, but I'm refraining from any source material spoilers so that whenever the end of this series comes, I'll be genuinely shocked.
All in all, episode 4 is a transitional episode. It's building us up to the college's school festival, as well as to Kyoya's next challenge: working on a video game. It's not filler, but it's definitely slower than the preceding episodes, which does make it suffer in terms of engagement. Nanako carried this episode across the finish line. Outside of her plot this episode, there wasn't a whole lot else that was intensely compelling.
Remake Our Life! is currently streaming on Crunchyroll.
Mercedez is a JP-EN localization editor & proofreader/QA, pop culture critic, and a journalist who also writes for Anime Feminist, where she's a staff editor, and But Why Tho?. She's also a frequent guest on the AniFem Podcast, Chatty AF. When she's not writing, you can find her on her Twitter or on her Instagram where she's always up to something.
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