Making excuses. Regrets about missed opportunities. To re-do one’s life again. These thoughts are universal amongst human beings.
Directed by Tomoki Kobayashi (Infinite Dendrogram, Akame ga Kill!), REMAKE OUR LIFE! was one of the best slice-of-life series that became our homely companion throughout the pandemic lockdown. Based on the light novel series written by Nachi Kio and illustrated by Eretto, Remake our Life! revolves around 28-year-old Kyouya Hashiba who quit his salaryman job only to later lose his dream job as a game developer after it went bankrupt.
Returning to his hometown in shame and disappointment, he tries to motivate himself by looking at the other successful creators of his generation. However, he finds himself digging deep into depression; regretting his life decisions; and reliving his failed moments in his head. But at the darkest time of his life, he magically time-leaps ten years into the past — to the very moment where he gets accepted into the Arts university that he once rejected and never attended.
If you were given the opportunity to remake your life, what would you do? Invest in Bitcoin and Apple? Chase after the one who got away? Spend more time with family? Well, not for Kyouya.
Using his ‘future’ skills and knowledge, this was his moment to shine and his once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to make the remake of his life a success. Not only does he want to become a better game creator but he wants to improve his life as well. He doesn’t want to become a loser that lives with his parents anymore. He doesn’t want to fail in his creative ambitions. He doesn’t want to become the future Kyouya that he used to despise everyday.
Sharing a house with fellow classmates with Aki Shino, Nanako Kogure, and Tsurayuki Rokuonji, this was going to be the start of something new. From composing scripts to brainstorming character designs to creating proper games, we genuinely enjoyed watching Kyouya and his classmates’ adventures. Like any typical college scenario, we see Kyouya and his classmates having conflicts and running into technical resource issues with their assignments. But thanks to Kyouya’s future self and his knowledge, things magically work out with ease.
Giving us strong SHIROBAKA vibes, Remake Our Life! offers great insight into the lows and highs of the gaming industry. But while we enjoyed learning about game development, Remake Our Life! was endearing and unique in its own way, thanks to Kyouya’s relationship with his friends, and how each other’s presence affects their journey in becoming their best selves.
It has been awhile since we’ve encountered male protgaonists with good character development — someone who the audience can truly understand and relate with. Despite coming from the future with more knowledge and experience, Kyouya doesn’t show arrogance or dominance. Kyouya is the man that everyone needs — he had confidence in all of his friends’ talents and skills, and was ultimately the source of light for his friends. He admires his colleagues and their respective talents, and will do anything to push them forward to take on bigger things that will hone their expertise.
But after Kyouya’s interference with his friends’ lives and timelines, it has ultimately changed the future of the original timeline. As a result, it triggered dramatic twists and spin-off timelines that will either amuse or throw fans into disarray. The visuals, the soundtrack, the dramatisation of dialogue and storytelling, and the results of character development — it is these very pinnacle moments in which Remake Our Life! sells itself as a serious storyteller.
While the main premise of this show is about Kyouya’s second chance at life and the hurdles of their creative endeavours, we also enjoyed the story’s cliche addition of the light-hearted romance. For awhile, there is an ongoing battle between Aki Shino and Nanako Kogure vying for Kyouya’s heart. It then becomes extremely amusing when his rival Eiko Kawasegawa becomes interested in him, and the rivalling bromance between Kyouya and Tsurayuki Rokuonji cannot be ignored as well. Acting as a secondary feature to the show, the romantic aspect adds a comedic touch to disperse the series’ intense drama.
RATING: 9 / 10
Geek It or No Geek It?:
Remake Our Life! might sell itself as an average series of basic animation and the overrated concept of time-travelling, but the storytelling is what differentiates Remake Our Life! from the rest.
As an individual who is also grappling through the murky waters of life, our thoughts are in unison with the creators and the final product that they have produced. As an anime viewer, you know the storytelling is good if it arouses a combination of emotions within you such as hope, excitement, adrenalin, disappointment and frustration — not just for the characters but for yourself as well.
Being the good storyteller, Remake Our Life! also compels us to think about our current pathway in life, and the goals that we are continuously thirsting to achieve in the future. Are we on the right path? Will we ever get what we want and dream of? As a viewer, we thank Remake our Life! for sharing its heart-to-heart story with us. We can now only hope for Season 2, and that good things will come for Kyouya and his friends.
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