Souta Tawara is a web designer working in Tokyo. When he visits his family’s Udon place in his hometown Kagawa Prefecture, he discovers a young boy. Upon confronting the boy, Souta soon learns his secret and decides to quit his job in order to take care of the boy, Poko. The daily adventures of the two slowly enfold as Poco energetically navigates his way through Kagawa, the “Udon Kingdom,” along with Souta.- Copied from Myanimelist
I picked up Poco’s Udon World without reading the synopsis or any prior knowledge about the anime. When I started watching, the premise felt remarkably similar to an Anime I have loved, and craved a season two of while simultaneously being afraid of it losing it’s magic if it did ever manage to secure another season- Barakamon.
Poco’s Udo World is no Barakamon, but it’s beautiful nonetheless. The character design and animation are cool, sleek but nothing impressive. It is safe. Though there are some stunning visuals in the first two episodes, as they try to introduce Kagawa and its charm. I loved the ending theme.
The short supernatural element regarding Poco was a surprise- he is a tanuki, but it wasn’t actually relevant to the overall plot- which is none. At first I thought this anime was about Souta’s journey back to the dream he once gave up- a Udon restaurant owner. Udon does show its presence throughout the series, but it doesn’t have any overall effect on the series, nor is it the ultimate goal. What the ultimate goal is? What is this anime about?
Well, it is about Souta and Poco’s relationship and it is listed under the slice of life genre, and it does have slice of life all over it. In all honesty, it’s just a series with a child being ridiculously cute, maybe a reminiscent of who you used to be, but it’s fun to watch. On the enjoyment front, comedy combined with the worry’s and joy’s of parenthood, it’s a total ten.
The relationship between Poco and Souta is endearing to say the least, maybe a little too smooth and easy going, but it’s impossible to not love them and Poco when you look at it through Souta’s eyes.
Souta is every other country boy turned into a man. He left for the city to find himself and somehow back again in Kagawa, he found his roots. The thing about Souta was, as he stated himself several times, he was lonely. He was the everyday ten to five worker and that chipped away at him. Then there was the rocky relationship with his father who h e would never get the chance to mend. Poco, simply put, was his saviour. Poco appealed to the “mom” in him, the caring side of him that never found a outlet. A way to right the wrong he did with his father, until Poco became much more important to him than he anticipated.
Poco and Souta are mirror images of each other. If Souta is the lonely city boy, Poco is the lonely tanuki who finally found someone wiling to look past what he is and love him for what he is. Poco had his reasons for seeking Souta and while the anime was sweet until the very end, it did manage to take a piece of my heart and trample all over it.
Every character in the series had their shining moments, and there were certainly a lot of character development. It isn’t something deep or philosophical, it’s more of a mindless watch for when you are bored or maybe in a really bad mood. It does this amazing job of cheering you up.
I repeat, It’s no Barakmon- a masterpiece in the slice of life genre from my perspective- but it is something.