Tomodachi Game: Season 1/ Episode 1 “Huh? Yuichi-kun Suspects His Friends?” [Premiere] – Recap/ Review (with Spoilers)

Manabu taunting Yuichi

Tomodachi Game is likely to be the show you will clamor for the next episode of and wish it was available to be binge-watched.

Tomodachi Game is likely to be the show you will clamor for the next episode of and wish it was available to be binge-watched.

Aired 4/5/2022
Network Crunchyroll
Created or Developed By Mikoto Yamaguchi, Yuki Sato
Directed By Yumeko Iwaoka
Written By Kenta Ihara
Genre Crime, Drama, Horror, Mystery, Young Adult, Animation, Non-English (Japanese), Competition
Introduced This Episode
Yuichi Chiaki Kobayashi
Kokorogi Satomi Amano
Tenji Daiki Hamano
Shiho Yume Miyamoto
Shibe Tomohiro Ōno
Manabu Minami Takayama

Plot Overview

Yuichi, Kokorogi, Tenji, Shiho, and Shibe are friends to varying degrees. Kokorogi is sort of the odd one out but is close to Yuichi. As class president and vice president, Shibe and Shiho are close, and as for Tenji? When it comes to the boys, he is cool, but maybe not so much with the girls. As for Yuichi? It seems he underestimates his friendships with everyone.

However, it doesn’t seem like that after two million yen ($16,136.06), which was supposed to go to a class trip, goes missing. What doesn’t help is Shiho and Shibe stop showing up to school soon after, and within a few days or weeks, letters go to everyone, with different senders from the group, bringing them to the school gates. Once all of them are there, they are kidnapped and brought to a room. One in which a character named Manabu reveals the two million that was stolen actually was the entry fee for a game to rid someone of 20 million yen ($161,360.60) in debt!

Now, who of the five is in debt? That question gets quickly shut down by Shiho, with a co-sign from Tenji, and Shibe, as always, noting his father could have given whoever was in trouble money. But, with perhaps being the poorest of the group, Yuichi is freaking out.

What doesn’t help things is that the 20 million in debt has been split 5 ways, and now everyone has to play games to get the debt to zero. But, like any dystopian game with a strange character like Manabu controlling things, things aren’t cut and dry. Everyone doesn’t have to win in any of these games, and within the first game, Yuichi believes someone is trying to sabotage Kokorogi to lessen everyone else’s debt.

Ultimately, making it seem that the question may not be who stole the money and got everyone in this predicament, but rather who isn’t involved?

Things To Note

Question(s) Left Unanswered

  1. Who were the two people in what looked like a control room?
  2. If Yuichi’s group is Group C, how many others are there, and will they compete with them down the road?
  3. Why is Manabu the mascot for this?
  4. How did the person in debt even find out about this game?
  5. Also, what caused them to be in debt?

What Could Happen Next

  1. Considering we end with Yuichi talking about Shiho’s underwear, it is going to get weird and dark quickly



You Get So Upset When The Episode Ends

While we aren’t someone who is pro entire seasons being released at once, Tomodachi Game pushes me to reconsider that position. Maybe it is because it ended with Yuichi compelling a 180 turn and saying something outlandish? Maybe it is because we haven’t seen a truly good who dun it mystery in quite some time, so this stood out?

It’s hard to say, but I do feel that everything is set up so wonderfully thus far to the point of wishing, like many a live-action series, we got more than just one episode upon the series premiere.

You Want To Know More About The Characters

Shibe, Tenji, and Shiho looking sinister

A lot of new shows struggle with making it so you aren’t just interested in the lead character or thinking the lead character is simply a Trojan Horse for far more interesting characters. In Tomodachi Game, everyone can draw your interest, alongside their relationship with other characters. For example, Kokorogi and Shiho might have a thing for Yuichi, who might be oblivious to how both ladies feel.

Also, Shibe has a crush on Shiho, which is unrequited, and for some reason, despite Kokorogi being part of the friend group, she is bullied. Mind you, part of her friend group is the class president and vice president, which makes you wonder why they don’t protect her, and whether or not they might be why she gets bullied? If it isn’t for a whole different reason.

Add in Yuichi’s parents being complete opposites and him having some strange mental breakdown, and you got a show that both develops its characters and presents a quality story to hook you.

Initial Impression

Tomodachi Game could potentially be the top anime of the season and potentially the year if it plays its cards right. It has set an excellent foundation regarding who its lead characters are and with giving us enough about each one to develop intrigue. Add in a mystery that doesn’t seem over the top but apt to a bunch of high school kids, and it really drives you to want more, sooner rather than later.

Listed Under Categories:

  • Plot and Dialog - /100
  • Character Development and Performances - /100
  • Visuals and Sound - /100
  • Pacing - /100
  • Value For Intended Audience - /100
User Review
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