Tonikaku Kawaii (TONIKAWA: Over the Moon for You) delivered just what you’d expect from such a title especially with the added hint the English title provides! If you take nothing else away from it, this anime is CUTE. Of course, the enigmatic girl Tsukasa is cute but even her know-it-all husband is cute. And they are so cute together doing the most basic of things from shopping to planning a trip. But just like their relationship, there’s more to TONIKAWA than just being adorable!
The Cast of Cuties
TONIKAWA revolves around Tsukasa, a beautiful girl with homemaking skills and mysterious origins, and Nasa, the somewhat detached yet good-hearted genius. They both have friends/family who offer support and pose a threat to the new couple. The Arisugawa sisters are indebted to Nasa with the younger Kaname constantly embarrassing and teasing him and older Aya silently pining for his affections. Chitose is the ‘younger sister’/self-proclaimed only-viable-romantic-option for Tsukasa who finds herself constantly ignored by her onee-sama. Her two maids Charlotte and Aurora mostly help Chitose with her schemes while providing comic relief contrasting Charlotte’s boldness with Aurora’s reserved manner.
Tsukasa and Nasa are mostly just a sweet, happy-go-lucky couple peacefully enjoying life while Kaname and Chitose stir up trouble and force them through difficult situations. At least Kaname just likes to embarrass her senpai and has his best intentions at heart. Chitose just wants to prove that Nasa isn’t good enough to be Tsukasa’s husband but her plans often blow up spectacularly in her face.
Set in Modern-day Tokyo with an Ominous Moon
It would seem to be set in normal modern-day Tokyo in a regular neighborhood with perhaps odd-ball but normal human characters. We do know with various hints throughout the anime that Tsukasa is not a normal human. She has some important tie with the moon that goes beyond a mere fascination and it seems almost fated her husband would end up being someone named after NASA. It mostly plays like a comedic slice of life with some depressing themes touched on but ultimately healed with understanding and love that leaves you feeling healed at the end of each episode.
The absolute feel-good vibes TONIKAWA gives you are the crowning jewel, with no awful surprises and only delightfully intriguing mysteries to stand out amongst rom-coms. With Nasa so easily flustered and Tsukasa so cool-headed, you would think you’d seldom get to see Tsukasa’s insecure or flustered sides but there are scenes aplenty! Watching them both admit they’d like to sleep next to each other or be romantic together with blushes on their faces will have you squealing with delight! There’s also no unnecessary drama that pushes them apart and the effective and quick ways they move past disagreements to become even closer keep up the happy atmosphere.
There is no introspective look at humanity nor any great understanding that will be gleaned from watching this show. While it is so nice and relaxing to watch, if you aren’t in the mood for some sugar-coated courting, you will not be able to connect much with the characters or the story. The added mystery about Tsukasa’s connection to the moon helps but it is, at its core, an anime about a very compatible couple and their cute everyday lives.
TONIKAWA does a lot of things surprisingly well for its rather uncomplicated delivery. The ecchi scenes are realistic without being exploitative or the focus of their relationship. The comedic scenes may not be groundbreaking but they are enough to make the audience laugh. They’ve got a pretty good formula going and have our usually calm and collected couple break character enough to leave you surprised and amused.
Tsukasa and Nasa themselves get along so well it would almost be boring were it not for the unique things they find out about each other and how they complement each other so naturally. They don’t play out as a basic ‘opposites attract’ comedy couple. They both have intense, niche interests, their own pride, and powers that make them somewhat superior to other people while still being sympathetic. What do you think of Tsukasa and Nasa’s sudden yet dedicated relationship? Let us know in the comments if TONIKAWA touched your heart!