Monday, May 4, 2009

Antique Bakery

Overall Rating: A
Summary: A cooking/comedy/slice-of-life/shōnen-ai series based on the manga by Fumi Yoshinaga. Keiichirō Tachibana comes from a wealthy family, and was kidnapped as a child. His abdustor was never caught, but Tachibana was rescued. After he was returned to his family they became overprotective of him and indulged him. As the series begins, Tachibana announces to his parents that he has decided to stop being a salesman, and to run a cake shop. The odd thing about his decision is that the one thing he remembers about his abductor is that he loved cake and fed Tachibana the cakes he bought every day.

After receiving his parents support, Tachibana opens the Antique Bakery, and looks for a pâtissier to make the cakes in his shop. He finds the perfect one in Yusuke Ono, a renowned chef. Ono has been fired from every job he has had due to being the "Gay of Demonic Charm". Acording to Stuart, my friend and professional japanese translator, what they are actually saying is something like "Gay Witch", but the subtitles for the version I have translates it as "Gay of Demonic Charm", which is weird but hilarious. Regardless of the translation, any man Ono is attracted to becomes attracted to him. It's this power that has gotten him fired from all of his previous jobs.

At first, Ono does not recognize Tachibana, but Tachibana definitely recognizes Ono. They went to high school together, and Ono came out of the closet to Tachibana by confessing his love to him. Tachibana told Ono he was disgusted by him and that he should die. :(

Rounding out the group are Eiji Kanda, a former boxer who suffered from a detached retina injury and had to quit. His love of pastries drew him to the Antique Bakery where he becomes Ono's apprentice. Finally, there's Chikage Kobayakawa, Tachibana's childhood friend, and the son of Tachibana's family's live-in housekeeper.

These four handsome men run the bakery, flirt, banter, and discuss the finer points of pasteries while humorous and dramatic events unfold in the café.

Alison brought home a bunch of episodes of this anime and described the plot to me, and so I immediately wanted to watch it. I have to say, it was everything I hoped for and more. If you like slice-of-life style anime then I recommend this one. It deals with some pretty heavy issues (homosexuality, alienation, and kidnapping for example), but it balances it with plenty of humor and fun!