5 Reasons Why You Should Watch Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions

Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions
Image source: uzerfriendly.com

I thoroughly enjoyed Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions: a quirky, sweet and oddly nostalgic little anime. Chunibyo is translated as ‘8th grader syndrome’. It is a time where certain pupils get delusions of grandeur and actually believe themselves to possess superpowers. Our main character, Yuta, refers to himself as ‘dark flame master’ and hosts epic battles against opponents, all entirely in his head.

Now about to begin high school, Yuta wants to leave his embarrassing ‘chunibyo’ phase and the bullying he faced from his middle school classmates behind. But that proves to be difficult when he strikes up a friendship with a full blown ‘chunibyo’ gothic Lolita-looking girl, Rika. Is it really just part of ‘growing up’ to ditch the dreamer side of yourself or is it losing a crucial part of yourself just to fit in? This is something that affects all of the characters in the show, even the adults. Here are five reasons why I think this show is unmissable:

1.The characters
There are a whole host of stereotypical high school characters present here. There’s the Queen Bee cheerleader, the quiet sweet girl, the slightly ‘weird’ girl etc,. but where this anime differs is that you slowly fall in love with each and every one and genuinely begin to care about them. Simultaneously, these seemingly different characters begin to form very close friendships with each other under the unlikeliest of circumstances.

No one is exactly as they appear and even the most ‘normal’ person can really be ‘chunibyo’ too, some just hide it better. Even the characters that you want to hate, you simply can’t as each has a reason for acting as they do whether it is out of bereavement or wanting to be ‘normal’. Each character has their own hidden depths and you can’t help but love the overbearing Nibutani and the crazily enthusiastic Dekamori. Even though Yuta is our main character the first season is mostly about Rika. We see her through his eyes and she is a very interesting character, especially as a female anime lead.

2. It doesn’t shy away from serious subjects
Rika lives with her older sister who often scolds her for her ridiculous imaginings but Rika is using them as armour to protect herself from a family bereavement she never truly got over. There is a truly heart-breaking segment in the anime where Rika becomes ‘normal’ in order to appease her increasingly worried family and Yuta. But Rika makes herself miserable in the process just to fit in and please others. This anime asks the question: is it simply a case of leaving all our fantasies and dreams aside to become a grown up? Or should you remain true to yourself no matter how ‘weird’ people think you are? That’s a question Yuta and Rika both learn the answer to by season one’s emotional end.

3. Yuta and Rika’s relationship
Both Yuta and Rika transform and grow as the story progresses and it is truly a beautiful thing to watch. Their love is a little like a fantasy too at some moments and then cringe worthily hilarious at others but then that’s teen love for you. Yuta is the voice of reason refusing to entertain Rika’s flights of fancy but at the same time finding himself irrevocably wrapped up in them. And Rika is always there to remind Yuta to stop being so serious and have a little fun.

Although there are hints of a romantic relationship, mostly their relationship is one based upon deep friendship and mutual understanding. It’s sweet and innocent, both are unsure of how to progress the relationship further despite peer pressure from their classmates. But Yuta and Rika seem to handle things just fine on their own in their own unique way. They set an inspiring example not just for teenagers, but for everyone to go at your own pace and be happy and don’t listen to any of your friends’ advice because they’re probably just as clueless as you are.

4. It perfectly captures the awkwardness of your teenage years
This is no anime with a show stopping perfect first kiss – this is an anime where first kisses are thwarted by unintentional headbutting. This anime is as much about finding your own identity and dealing with loss as it is about friendship and romance. It seems to encompass the struggles of being a teenager completely. It’s a confusing time when you’re trying to find yourself and falling in and out of love at the same time. All of those wonderfully bittersweet emotions are captured in beautiful animation in this show.

High school is one big massive pressure cooker of uncertainty, peer pressure, joy and sorrow and this show reflects the high school experience in a way that perhaps no anime has been able to do before. Life isn’t 100% reality or fantasy, it’s a little of both, just like this anime. You have to deal with your own private issues and all the harmful gossip from your classmates; it can all be a little overwhelming but finally you find a place you belong you belong with like minded people and things don’t seem so bad. That for Rika and Yuta is the formation of the Far Eastern Magic Nap Society where they and their gang can simply be who they are free from the prying, judgemental eyes of their peers.

5. The mix between fantasy and reality
This is an anime like no other that turns the magical girl stereotype on its head. The fantasy battle sequences are as detailed and epic as any legendary pokebattle but the difference here is these battles all take place within the heads of our main characters. We see these magic battles from two perspectives. Those that have chunibyo, and those who don’t. Those that have chunibyo see explosions and create majestic earth-shattering weapons from thin air. Those who don’t see a ridiculous group of teenagers flailing their arms and legs wildly. These are best appreciated when witnessing fights between Rika and her sister. The battle scenes are epic and hilarious all at once and it seems a great way to integrate fantasy elements into a seemingly ‘normal’ high school anime series.

Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions is genuinely funny and it will stir up all those memories about the trials and tribulations of growing up. Life is a little mix of both fantasy and reality just like this show. Embrace the Chunibyo within and who cares what anyone else thinks. Life changes so quickly after high school so enjoy the precious chunibyo phase while you can. You have the rest of your life to figure out how to be a grown up after all, if you ever do.

Some of the coverage you find on Cultured Vultures contains affiliate links, which provide us with small commissions based on purchases made from visiting our site. We cover gaming news, movie reviews, wrestling and much more.