God I enjoyed the heck out of Gourmet Girl Graffiti. I loved the steady pace of the show with the amazing visuals and sweet relationships between the girls as they cooked and ate together throughout their last year in middle school. Some people might have a problem with the erotic-like eating moments but I never let it bother me for several reasons.
Food | Slice-of-Life |Comedy | Seinen
Winter 2015 | 12 Episodes | PG-13
Ryou is a mild-mannered middle schooler who lives alone, her cooking having less taste since her grandmother passed away a couple of years ago. However, Ryou’s bouncy purple-haired cousin Kirin comes to live with her on the weekends, and the two discover the pleasures and yummy-ness of cooking and sharing meals together as a family. They’re often joined by Ryou’s wealthy, quiet friend Shiina and other friends and family members. But, always center stage, is Ryou and the amazing food she can create for others.
So, like I said, I loved this too, too much, which has to do with my past with food and cooking itself. The only real TV I was ever allowed to watch growing up was the Food Network; to see a fiction show on cooking and eating was something very enjoyable because it was new in a medium I love very much. I learned how to cook good food in my early teens, around Ryou’s age, so it was fun seeing girls a similar age appreciating cooking and chowing down on food!
Especially when they were so cute and enjoyable to spend time with. I really wanted to pop into Ryou’s home and try her cooking and dramatically eat with her and Kirin and Shiina.
ALSO BECAUSE THE FOOD LOOKED AMAZING.
Shaft’s animation and visuals in this show were SUBLIME. Besides the character designs just being really cute and pleasing, the food that Graffiti highlights is diverse and so beautiful. From vegetables to fried food to fish to bento lunch boxes and pizza…Graffiti had some really wonderful dishes to display every single episodes–even the simple episodes where the girls just ate ice cream in the tub.
Even if moe slice-of-life is not your thing, if gorgeous animation is something you value, watching Graffiti for the food alone will be well worth your time! I like to think that anime was especially made for two things: sports and food because both are just out of this world in anime form.
Being a comedy, I did enjoy Graffiti’s sense of humor. While it wasn’t clap-your-hands-like-a-seal funny, there was some good one liners and several fun characters to watch, like Shiina’s family cook, Tsuyuko.
Kirin was an especially fun character because she was eager, silly and child-like without being very immature or annoying. She got a lot of giggles from me. Kirin is probably my favorite character because she has the most obvious growth, going from a free loader to being helpful and more thoughtful for Ryou.
Part of the comedy came from the near-fanservice of the girls’ style of eating. I know a lot of people were surprised by the rather erotic-like style of eating, but I was almost always able to block out anything seemingly sexual in my head.
To me, the girls’ response was just a little more expressive from the inward reactions I myself give to good food. I would go so far to say the girls are almost like Supertasters, which is a scientific term. I’m a self diagnosed Supertaster (especially to bitter thing) so I think such a response to food is more realistic than one might think, at least for an inward reaction.
Besides, compared to the new spring anime Food War’s food-gasmic fanservice, Graffiti is pretty tame. XD Pleasure, after all, is a response one gives to many things–and don’t tell me you haven’t reacted like that to pizza at least once in your life. 😉
Besides the amazing food, Graffiti remains pretty simple in format, follow Ryou and Kirin throughout the school year and the seasons. I really enjoyed the message about eating together with friends and how food tastes better when shared. As a female, I love stories about connection and relationships, so Graffiti’s story of connection and companionship between a lonely girl who finds friends through her food was easy story fodder for me to enjoy. XD
I’ve been lacking such psychical relationships in my life the past couple years anyway, so it’s nice to live through characters every once and awhile. That might sound lame, but it’s an element to why I enjoyed this show so much.
This show also had two of my most favorite openings AND endings of the Winter Season!
If you’re not one to enjoy slice-of-life, this anime might not be for you. While the food is amazing, you’ll probably grow bored by the calm pace of the show. However, if you’re looking for an enjoyable story about girls who know how to make amazing-looking food with a few fun laughs, then you’ll enjoy Gourmet Girl Graffiti. That’s why I did! ❤
Star Value: 4.5/5 | Re-Watchabiliity: Medium | Definition: Yummy Food is Sexy!