Production: P.A. Works
Publisher: NIS America
Blu-Ray Release Date: June 30th, 2015
Imagine yourself in a world where people living in the sea is normal. I mean, they are actually living in the sea. They can breathe in water and cook with sea fire and never ‘must come up for air’. That is the premise of the series Nagi no Asukara, localized in English by NIS America as A Lull in the Sea. The series is marked with great character development, awesome music, and animation eye-candy. Many thanks to NIS America for the screener (review copy) of Disc 1!
The series follows the lives of four ‘sea kids’, as I call them, and one land kid as the focus of the series. Hikari, the loud-mouthed one; Kaname, the silent ikemen; Chisaki, the ‘everyone’s big sister’ type; and Manaka, the awkward, shy girl are the four sea kids. Their middle school has been shut down and they must now attend the middle school on the surface. That is where they meet Tsumugu, the sea-loving fisherboy. Through attending school on the surface, they go through their fair share of drama, romance, and fun.
I had a ton of fun watching this series. First off, the characters truly make the series interesting. All the sea people have an extra layer of skin called Ena which allows them to breathe underwater (and is explained somewhat scientifically in the show). Each character has their own unique personality and issue. Each one feels real with a sense of depth to their development throughout the show. Getting to know the characters was a great joy in watching A Lull in the Sea, especially when the story gets chockful of drama. Characters grow and learn from others, multiple pasts get revealed, and the show just draws you in with it.
However, the character development also benefitted from the background music, as well. A Lull in the Sea’s BGM is engaging and a delight to the ears. Hikari’s Waltz is a particularly inspiring piece for Hikari’s development. With nothing but guitars pushing the beat, I feel that this song is particularly thematic of Hikari’s personality. Seemingly erratically-played notes that are fast-paced, yet under control. I feel that this song fits Hikari very much. Then there are songs like Tsuki ga Migaku that is slow and mellow. It is a song that makes you remember the harshness of the world. It embodies the hopelessness of a situation, but also feels like if you persevere through the hardships, you’ll find a light at the end. Nukumi Yuki is soothing, yet eerie enough to feel like there’s a bit of mystery behind the song. Furthermore, all of the BGM for A Lull in the Sea has a very aquatic nature to it, driving home the fact that a lot of the locations are within the ocean.
With awesome music and great development, A Lull in the Sea truly shines in the animation department. From the moment that you get to the disc menu, you are visually assaulted with stunning graphics. Perhaps this attack on my eyes is from the fact that I’ve never seen Blu-Ray quality before (first one I’ve ever watched), but even on Crunchyroll, the graphics for the series are absolutely breathtaking. The animation alone makes it worth it for me.
If you have the money, go pick up Nagi no Asukara from NIS America today. Overall, the animation, music, and character developments are strong in this series. If you want to go all out, go for the Premium Edition for the price for $143.99 USD! You get all the episodes on three discs, the English voice acting (which is pretty good), the 2-disc OST, and an art book. You even get a flag and flag pole. Go for it. And if you can’t, there’s always the DVDs on RightStuf for $49.99 USD.
Lolinia gives A Lull in the Sea a Drastik Moé Measure of 8.8 out of 10.0 (88).