Let’s Talk (Some More) About Citrus

citrus

I usually don’t post mid-way impressions of shows, but for Citrus I think I’ll have to make an exception, as I yet again have quite a few things to say.

As you remember from my First Impression of the show, I was literally blown away by how awesome it looked and felt. I pretty much saw it as the perfect adaptation of a manga like this and went into the next episode with my expectations ridiculously high.

Of course, what followed was a bit of disappointment, as episode two, in sharp contrast to what we saw in the first one, was rushed and so fast-paced that I had difficulties following all the events taking place. Too many manga chapters were cramped into this one episode, which made it hard to focus on one thing for longer than a few seconds until the next big event took place. Exactly what I liked about the first episodeβ€”namely the addition of scenes that were not in the manga or the focus on specific minor scenesβ€”was completely missing. I would have loved to have seen Yuzu actually think about her actions a bit more, as the anime version should have given us more room for inserting inner thoughts or more depth to complex emotions and intentions in general. But instead, we saw her rush into everything, often having to guess what she’s doing or thinking, which in my eyes is the result of this fast pacing.

I’m sure they simply need to cover enough chapters to make it to a point in the manga that would feel like a good or sufficient end to the anime. Since we already saw Nina and Sara in the opening, I’m guessing the anime will end on this arc, which in my eyes seems to be a lot of content to cover (or 16 chapters, to be exact). This basically means they can’t only cover one chapter in each episode, but then again, at least they don’t have to cover two every time either. Well, the anime might as well cover a bit more content than what I’m expecting or even add some new content in. Who knows, really?

Bottom line is, I just hope that they’ll slow down the pacing a bit and have important scenes get the time they actually need and deserve, in order for them to have the desired impact.

After episode three, I think we’re on track again. The episode felt way more natural than the second one, and it gives me hope that the pacing will stay like this for the rest of the season.

citrus

What I also hope is that with the forced kisses of the first volume out of the way, we can hopefully look forward to a bit more “nice-looking” ones. I know that the anime has often been accused of looking too rapey, and I agree. With the two kisses of the first episode, I totally agree that, not only the one with the teacher, but also the one between Mei and Yuzu, were simply supposed to look and feel like they did. Nothing about these two kisses happened because both parties wanted it, and it sure made me feel uncomfortable watching it, which is good. The scene with Mei pushing Yuzu down and literally forcefully undressing her in episode two, however, came as a surprise. While it did follow exactly what was shown in the manga version, the music and the way Mei was depicted as this dark figure hovering above Yuzu, made me feel more uncomfortable than I would have liked. Back when I read this, as well as the infamous shower scene, I was sure it was only there as eye candy for the readers. Simply two nice extra scenes to cover up the yuri content that was required in each chapter. None of it really felt this heavy or bad. The anime version goes a different route in my eyes, though, as it is made painfully clear that this is not just fun and games. And even though many people criticize the anime for exactly that, I think it’s good that way. However, I’m still looking forward to seeing some kissing scenes that are actually nice to look at.

2

Oh wait, I forgot about that one…

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33 thoughts on “Let’s Talk (Some More) About Citrus

  1. I think there’s a lot to talk about in the way the first few episodes felt, and how the anime generally did one up the manga in that respect. It’s easy to pass them off as just being there for titilation but I do wonder just what is up with someone if they actually found those scenes sexy. That said, I do think it’s fair to say they are a bit tropey and there more for shock value or hand wavey character exposition rather than solid writing, but they do have a purpose and the anime carried that out at least as well as the manga did.

    As for the Himeko mini-arc, I would say that I actually am liking it better than I did in the manga. It really does feel like this was another case of them actually inserting content. They’ve sort of taken the bones of what was in the manga and expanded it to flesh out both Mei and Himeko more than was originally done. I still don’t feel that they needed to push the Himeko element as far as they did as I just don’t see the point of it long term but I am very much liking how things are coming together.

    Liked by 2 people

    • After having watched the most recent episode, I do agree. They yet again added in so many little things as well as a lot of what was needed to make this specific scene between Mei and Himeko all the more horrible (in a good way).

      I’m exited to see what else this anime will add in and how well these little additions will fit in with the rest. So far, those are perfect.

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  2. So far I’m liking it a lot, it’s almost impossible to not watch each episode a couple of times. You probably already know, but do get a “nice-looking” kiss in episode 4 between Mei and Yuzu, which seems to bring us to the end of chapter 5 of the manga. Now we have the sticky mess that is Himeko…poor Himeko.

    I agree all the assaulting is making me way uncomfortable too, and is jarring even when I am expecting it (since I know the manga). But I can see that it’s intended to be that way – the push and pull with the viewer is as intense as the push and pull between Mei and Yuzu.

    As for the end of the anime, I am betting they will leave us with a cliff hanger (it’s Citrus after all). Probably the end of chapter 14…ugh.
    On the upside, if that is the case, then the pacing should be to your liking with about a chapter per episode (probably one more rushed one covering 2 chapters).

    Liked by 1 person

    • One chapter per episode is surprisingly nice. I mean, yeah they’ll have about 40 pages to cover, but seeing that we have about 23 minutes per episode it’s not that much. Plus, I just live for these little additions, like I need more! πŸ˜€

      Also, I’m hoping that we’ll get some specials after the show has ended. And if it really does end on a cliffhanger, it at least means we might get another season, so I can absolutely live with it πŸ˜›

      Liked by 1 person

  3. What did you guys think of the English Dub of Citrus? The first episode came out!

    And also, yes…they did tend to rush things with episode 2 and all and it is disappointing. But…really, we don’t know how the anime will end with just 12 episodes, so we’ll have to wait and see.

    I know….episode 2’s scene with Mei and Yuzu was kinda uncomfortable for you too. I understand that. But it put some emotion in there….right? Or is that disappointing as well? Ah…well…

    A-anyways episode 4 came out and Himeko’s scene with Mei…do you think it was kinda rapey as well? Let me know. I’m kinda afraid what other people thought.

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    • Oh yes, this little or more like long scene between Himeko and Mei… oh that felt so, so horrible, which is very good. I really didn’t like watching it, but that’s exactly how this should have felt. Yet again, kinda rape-y, but we’ll see how things worked out for them in the next episode anyway. No spoilers though πŸ˜›

      Also, didn’t see that the English version was released. Gotta check it out, but I can already see how this might not be to my liking.

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  4. i just finished watching ep 4 and for me so far im enjoying it a lot as always though i will agree ep 2 did feel a bit rushed as do most animes that adapt from a source material, but as of now the pacing feels right which im happy about. as for the whole assaulting part with mei, it is a bit jarring even when i knew it was coming but it was intended that way to put more emotion into it so i feel its okay to some extent. also happy we got to see yuzu and mei’s first “nice looking” kiss which was great, all in all enjoying the anime more and more but i do hope they keep at this calm and steady pace instead a having some eps rush it

    Liked by 1 person

    • I really loved seeing this kiss between Yuzu and Mei, but just like in the Manga, I feel like it was just so random. Like I still don’t get how this made any sense.
      I’m not complaining though, I could literally watch a whole episode of them just kissing (and more) πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

      • i agree, that kiss was really random and out of the blue but it’s still cute and i love it in the manga and the anime! i cant wait to see more of their cute kisses in the anime!

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  5. It was definitely important for them to make the forced kiss scenes as uncomfortable to watch as they did. There’s no denying that it was sexual harassment on Mei’s part, and I feel like the anime depicted it responsibly. Mei’s first forced kiss in ep1 was quite evocative, backed with tense, dramatic music and especially the sound of Yuzu kicking over her makeup box.

    Basically, the anime clarified the tone of those scenes, something which the manga isn’t able to do as easily. With manga as a static, silent medium, there’s a lot more of readers interpreting things for themselves, imagining what happens in the gutters between each panel. In contrast, with anime the nuances of a scene are made much more explicit through the addition of animation, music, voice acting, and all that other film-specific stuff.

    To be honest, I didn’t like the manga when I first read it because I believed those scenes were meant to merely be titillating, that they were merely meant to arouse and fill a chapter’s yuri quota. More importantly, I thought it fetishised that kind of forcible sexual conduct, making it seem less serious than it would be if it happened in the real world, which I felt was irresponsible.

    But the anime version presents a much more complex and realistic experience of physical intimacy that I didn’t give the story credit for.

    I don’t know if Saburouta ever states her true intentions in writing those scenes, or if we can truly know what she thought when first writing those chapters years ago, but the anime version has given me a reason to give the manga another chance, which isn’t something I would have expected. I just have to cross my fingers and hope both the anime and the manga end well.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I completely agree with everything that was just said. Well okay, to be fair, I loved the manga from the beginning and despite the forced drama I’m still a loyal fan. However, I see it the same way. The anime is presenting it all in a way that the manga version just didn’t – intended or not.

      I really hope that this will get more people to give the manga another chance, as I still see it as one of the best (definitely not the best though) that there is right now.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I also agree. With the manga it took a pretty big leap of logic on my part to assume Mei had actual depth and was acting out on past trauma rather than just being a device for fan service.

        That leap also made everything Mei does more interesting and horrifying on subsequent reads. It’s more important that viewers clue in to that early on for the anime to succeed.

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      • Lena – I decided to watch the anime after reading your enthusiastic review, and I enjoyed the anime so much I went back to reread volume 1, which I had read and disliked awhile back. The anime completely changed my perception of what is going on in the manga, and I liked the manga quite a lot on the re-read. When I first read the manga, I somehow missed the idea Citrus was as much a critique of the rigid, repressed Japanese upper class as it was a dark yuri coming-of-age story. I did not relate to Yuzu and Harumin at all when I first read the manga, but now I love them for their enthusiasm, independence, and joy in the face of brutal suppression of individual expression. KoGyaru as liberators, how cool.

        As Jane Doe notes, the forced kisses of the first four episodes make a lot more sense in the anime, where they are depicted as manifestations of power, actions to dominate and control others. Although I generally prefer manga to anime, I agree with tredaeci that anime is the better medium to present a much more nuanced presentation of the events in the first volume. The studio did a nice job with subtle differences in facial expression and body language from kiss to kiss that say a lot about the individuals and their insecurities. The anime displays all of the pain underlying all of the troubling events in volume 1 in a way the manga couldn’t. The only quibble I have with the anime is the way they handled the bonus pages. I know why they did it, but I think the story is stronger when Yuzu gives Mei Ansoniko after Mei finds him and tries and fails to repair him.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Do you guys do video game reviews? If so, I think you would enjoy reviewing Blue Reflection. It has some pretty overt lesbian characters and is an overall fun game. (It’s also not too long.)

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Good that you made this post, following Citrus been really “interesting”.
    IMO ep1 and ep4 are the best so far, while ep2 was the weakest one, my problem with ep3 was the music at the end didnt fit right in, and that I was expecting that scene to be way better handled than what it was, maybe better animation, expanded time or just better art for that segment…

    The manga has one of the best art I have seen in manga, it is on top with the best of the best (just finished Pandora Hearts manga last year, so I m using both as comparison)… I have seen many adaptations before but seeing this one really awoke me up to how much a different can the art from source vs art from adaptation have, Citrus has a very noticeable different since I love the manga and its art which is part of the reason the manga is soo great, this love makes me hype all the more, and expect certain things.
    Dont get me wrong the art of the anime is great, all the more for an yuri anime, I love it, but it just cant compare with the source, we already are lucky the art of the anime is this good!
    But with the current status quo the only way the anime can free itself from being “just another adaptation” is bringing it own guns, ep1 and now ep4, all those extra scenes help alot, not just for plot development (ep1 and ep4 where better at plot development than their respective manga chapters), but also to spice stuff up (since we dont have the 10/10 manga art).

    Like you said, they are shooting for 16 chapters, the anime will be 12 long, ep4 adapted chapter 6, ep5 looks to adapt chapter 7 solely, if they keep the quality for these extra scenes, episode 5 maybe the best yet (T_T)!
    It is safe to say we will get some more episodes that will cover more than 1 chapter, since 12 eps vs 16 chapters (and we are at 4 eps = 6 chapters), BUT it is also more than certain that will get quite some more episodes were the pacing will be just great like ep1 and ep4, and for those I cant wait!
    So in the end I think it is safe to assume the adaptation will meet my expectatives and maybe even surpass here and there.

    I just dont like the hate it gets, as a yuri it is kinda darker, but if you read the manga the art helps to soft that, so many anime viewers only are not enjoying it as much for it?
    Meh, that could be for alone another topic, but anyway good read there, hope to see more posts for Citrus in the future~~

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s true, I don’t think any anime art, not even the one in Violet Evergarden could match what Saburouta presented to us in the manga version. It’s simply too gorgeous to have any competition when it comes to art in anime. Still, as you said, what we got is top-notch too, just not 12/10, but instead rather 8/10 πŸ˜›

      I think the first few chapters were pretty dark because of all the forced scenes, and while we’ll get quite a few more, I think it will tone down a little in that department. Still, the anime version does feel way heavier and darker than the manga.

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      • Yeah, the art is pretty good, more than decent when you compare to the medium standart, so overall, I gave the manga a 9 in total, the anime could also reach a 9 if they keep delivering enough like they did with ep4, I m not asking for all episodes to be great, just excell when you the most, to deliver the biggest impact possible.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Seeing what we’ve got for episode 1-4 and the preview for episode 5, I think they’ll go with 3 episode = 1 volume, with roughly going with this composition for the anime:
    1st episode of an arc = 1st chapter of a volume + 1/10 of 2nd chapter of a volume + few (bonus content + original content)
    2nd episode of an arc = 7/10 of 2nd chapter of a volume + 2/3 of 3rd chapter of a volume + 1 or 2 original content
    3rd episode of an arc = 1/3 of 3rd chapter of a volume + 4th chapter of a volume + few (bonus content + original content)

    I put bonus and original in a bracket because they might add only bonus content or original content, or they might add both. I also don’t put altered content here because it replaced manga content that would’ve been in the anime otherwise.

    So I suppose if you think episode 2 is a downhill experience, I think you’ll also feel episode 5 rushed.

    Personally, I don’t think 2nd episode is rushed, but then again I think episode 1 was straddling a thin line between having enough content and padding run-time with useless images to fill time (it repeatedly repeat scenes from earlier in the episode), and while the first episode is phenomenal, I suppose covering as much material as second episode did felt a bit “safer” for me.

    Not that I am against having 1 episode = 1 chapter, because if they can put in enough original content, maintain a good pace like they did with episode 1, and if needed alter the original scene to make a better narrative, I am more than happy to watch it. And with that in mind, if you watch carefully about things that they alter in these past episodes, I am going to say that episode 6 has potential to be the best episode of the show.

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    • So, does that mean it’s going to be another disappointment because of those rushed episodes? I know there’s only 4 so far, but come on. Don’t hate on Citrus already because of that.

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      • I don’t think it will be another disappointment, since we now know how it might go down, or rather I’m not expecting it to be as slow and throughout as the first episode was.
        Seeing that it’s only a select few episode that might have a few more manga pages to cover, I can absolutely live with them being a little more intense when it comes to the pacing. I see that they are working to get to a good ending and if what we predicted is right, then that’s what we’ll most likely get.

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      • I don’t think it’s going to be a disappointment, and I am not hating Citrus (in fact, I am a fan of it). What I am saying is, if you find episode 2 to be not on par with episode 1 because it covers more chapters, then episode 5 might also be the same for you.

        If you, like me, like episode 2 just fine, then episode 5 should also be fine.

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  9. There is also some big news to discuss with chapter 4:
    Due to some eyebrow down sizing in the art department, Himeko will NOT be nicknamed Eyebrowchan.
    Looks like it will be changed to Curls or Curlchan:

    Not sure how I feel about this, quite the departure from the original manga…this might take some time. πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 2 people

    • Haha that’s true! πŸ˜€
      I still wonder why they did it though… The bigger eyebrows suited her, since she was a very particular character to begin with, personality and style-wise πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

  10. It seems that in western fandom there’s a tendency “Healthy same-sex relationship only! You’re a bad wlw/mlm if you like this fucked up shit!” But what if LGBT people like messy stuff? Take Gengoroh Tagame for example. He’s one of the most famous gay manga artist and his works involves stuff like rape, incest, amputation and scat. He even wrote a story where a grandpa rape his grandson for God sake! But gay men LOVE it and frequently give his manga 4 or 5 stars.

    Queer women are people. People are flawed, people experience trauma, people play into stereotypes, people do bad things. I’m tired of ppl shaming women that like Citrus and NTR. They completely forgot that women can like fucked up stuff too! Plus we need more yuri anime, not less.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Personally, I enjoy sweet and romantic stories more than anything else. I don’t want too much drama and I guess you could say I don’t want messy stuff. Still, even though I prefer it all to be “tame”, I can still give other stories and genres a chance without having to go into them already expecting to hate it.

      Many people can’t and for some reason have to tell the world all about why they hate it.

      Citrus gets a lot of hate right now because it’s big and reaches even those that are not familiar with yuri or the other presented genres yet. I think if it wasn’t for it being an anime and a pretty big one at that it wouldn’t receive this much hate or any of these comments at all. As soon as things reach the masses and not only the people that it’s meant to reach (meaning yuri fans), there will be hate.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Citrus haters can be hypocrite sometimes. They’re like “Sexual assault is bad! It’s portrayed lesbian badly! Don’t support this!” and then read One-Punch Man, Tokyo Ghoul and popular shonen stuff. One-Punch Man portrayed the token gay men as a serial rapist, but it’s ok because it’s supposed to be parody apparently *puke*. There’s also predatory “lesbian” that somehow fall in love with the bland male lead or… dead lesbian trope in popular shonen/seinen.

        So yeah, I would rather watch Citrus rather 99% isekai-imouto-incest-harem-ecchi anime.

        Liked by 2 people

  11. Well their kiss was supposed to be uncomfortable.
    Yuzu realised that a first kiss isn’t as romantic as she thought, and Mei was having problems with her life.
    Their relationship isn’t the sunshine and flowers you see in every other Yuri manga. Which is why I love it.

    So their first legit kiss becomes well worth it, and is a step for Mei finally opening up to Yuzu.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Everyone….is Citrus really for us? I mean, really great anime/managa at all? I man when you think about it, as I heard some people say, this is not how these character act normally like in real life. So….are they saying that Citrus is trash and not real life related stuff? They go on hating the characters just because they don’t act like normal people would?

    Let me know.

    Like

    • If you want something super realistic, then I think you shouldn’t watch like 80% of all anime, TV shows and movies out there πŸ˜›
      It’s just some peoples’ opinion and Citrus sure attracts criticism right now, possibly because it’s just so big all of a sudden.

      You should always try to find out for yourself if you enjoy something or not. Of course opinions you read online will affect you, but you should still try to see for yourself. .

      Liked by 2 people

  13. I figured that the show would have a fast pace considering its only 12 episodes long and there is no guarantee that we will get a second season, so it does make sense that they have to cram as much as they can into the time frame that they have, but I am glad that they are slowing things down a bit now. Considering how popular Citrus is though I am really hoping that it does well enough to warrant at least 2 more seasons to finish the series properly.

    I am also glad the forced kisses are out of the way now, the more lovey dovey kind are always the best ones πŸ˜€ But after reading the manga it was no surprise we would be dealing with the awkwardness of the first few chapters. Hopefully by episode 12 we will be at or close to the two of them finally dating! Love your write ups and analysis on things like this Lena, always great to talk in depth about all things yuri! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

    • It can only get better from this point on and knowing me and my love for yuri and this little gem in particular, I have a feeling more posts like this will follow.

      Thanks for the encouragement, always appreciated πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

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