Kaori and Sou have been friends since childhood. They spend most of their time together, and are even in the same class and astronomy club. One day, a girl appears in the club room. Yui has no memories, and no one seems to know where she comes from. The club welcomes her, and soon she becomes one of the group.
But Yui’s appearance doesn’t seem to be just chance. She has flashes of images from another time and place, and seems to have an important mission buried in the back of her mind.
What brought her to the astronomy club room? And why is she so attached to Sou and Kaori?
While most of In Search of the Lost Future is slice-of-life, it’s kept fresh by the thread of mystery that runs through it. Who is Yui? Why has she appeared? Throughout the first several episodes, we only receive small hints. It’s just enough to guess, but also just enough to wonder what will actually happen.
Once the slice-of-life, happy-go-lucky teen romance gets serious though, it gets really serious. Given the rather innocent brightness of so much of the show before, it got dark pretty fast. If you’re prepared for it, I think that’s a good thing, and the tragic turn of events certainly contrasts the teenage drama and after-school fun quite well. In Search of the Lost Future does a great job at creating the feeling that something big and dreadful is just around the corner.
If I have one complaint about the storyline, it’s that the final few episodes seemed like a lot of convoluted storyline stuffed into very few episodes. I suppose this isn’t a big surprise, considering the show’s visual novel origins. Some other reviewers have noted that they felt the series was very disjointed earlier on. Personally, I found it easy enough to follow until the final episodes. It’s one of the better VN adaptations I’ve watched.
For a group of teenagers, the characters in In Search of the Lost Future are actually really likable. Granted, they aren’t as fleshed-out as I wish they were. I understand there’s only so much that can be done in 12 episodes, but we get these great insights into certain characters and then never really go far enough. Still, I had to take a two-week break in between starting and finishing this boxset, and I was pleasantly surprised when I returned to it and found that I really wanted to see what would happen to them next, and if Sou and Kaori would finally come to terms with their feelings.
On top of everything else, the animation and art were actually quite nice most of the time. Even with sometimes mediocre drawing, the use of colour is fantastic.
Because of its switch from slice of life with an air of mystery to a rather intense drama, it’s hard to suggest a genre that this one fits into. However, I would recommend it if you like engaging short series. In Search of the Lost Future was surprisingly good.
For those of you asking “Is this boxset worth it?” I will admit that I like the art on this one quite a bit. The inside insert is also quite nice. But once again we’ve run up against the issue that seems to plague most Funimation boxsets – the lack of anything extra. Special features are the usual (openings, endings, and trailers), and the insert is only half art, so it’s not really usable for anything else if you don’t want an episode list up on your wall too.
If you like the series, it’s probably worth it to have on your shelf – the boxset is nice, and the blu-ray quality is great. At the very least, I recommend checking it out.
Interested? Check out In Search of the Lost Future on FunimationNow, or pick it up here at Funimation.com!