No, not really – like Working did, Hiiro no Kakera airs its premiere episode (sans OP and ED) a month early. It’s a fairly solid first ep, with a classic premise and a large ensemble cast consisting mostly of bishies. It’s DEEN, so let the carping begin – though I thought the look and animation were fairly decent in that washed-out DEEN color palette sort of way. The basic idea is that a young girl named Kasuga Tamaki (Miyake Marie) is summoned by her Grandmother (Kubota Tamie, Sui from Hansaku Iroha) to the small village where she lives. Things turn weird immediately when strange creatures appear before Tamaki in the woods.
This premise is pretty standard anime fare – the women of Tamaki’s family are basically in charge of protecting the world, and Grandma’s time is coming to a close to Tamaki has to be groomed to take over. To help in the task are a cute little fox and several young men from the family whose ancestral duty is the protection of the Tamayorihime, the princesses of which Tamaki is soon to become. The fact that this is adapted from a shoujo manga is most obvious in the vibe with the guys, all of whom are drawn in ultra-bishounen fashion, with each filling a trope that could easily have come from Ouran Host Club. The vibe is actually closer to Fruits Basket for me, with the boys acting cheerful and dealing with the clashing personalities in spite of their magical nature and difficult fate in life. I don’t see this being anywhere near as good as that series – one of the very best shoujo ever – but it’s not impossible that this could be an entertaining show. Director Shirohata Bob is primarily known for Hetalia, so he has some experience with the bishounen factor.