Note: School Days anime spoilers ahead. I hope that does not matter to you since School Days is 16 years old and it is not a good anime series (note that some viewers disagree with me), but I note the spoiler warning for those who may be concerned.

I came across an interesting writing prompt on the Umai Yomu Anime Blog:

Has anyone ever changed your opinion about an anime?

From prompt article

I do not partake in anime communities or regularly talk to people about anime. However, I did note one example where a friend of mine slightly changed my view of the character of Setsuna Kiyora in the generally unfortunate School Days anime series. I described his argument in my review of the unfortunate School Days anime:

Flawed as they were, Setsuna’s actions, and ultimate failings, were coherent. She had an origin story for liking Makoto. Her decision to help Sekai made sense in light of her friendship with Sekai. Setsuna’s actions toward Kotohona, while poor, were explained in that the show gave an account of Setsuna’s understanding of the situation. Her ultimately betrayal of Sekai was also explained well. Her having to admit her feelings in order to force Kotohona to accept Makoto’s rejection – and the predictably bad consequences that ensued – was probably the closest thing School Days had to a clever moment.

Summarizing my friend’s case for Setsuna in School Days

I summarized (and spoiled) the entire School Days anime in my review, so I will not reinvent the boat here. Setsuna is a diminutive high school student who is secretly in love with the atrocious, lecherous protagonist of the School Days anime. However, she sets aside her feelings to help her best friend, Sekai, start a relationship with Makoto. Setsuna’s efforts were complicated by the fact that Sekai was but one part of a love triangle with another girl, Kotohona (who was technically Makoto’s girlfriend), and the love triangle would gradually expand as Makoto became bored with the two principal girls. In the end, Setsuna betrays Sekai but extracts a promise from Makoto that he would be faithful to Sekai subsequent to said betrayal, which was followed by Setsuna moving to France and the Makoto-Sekai-Kotohona love triangle ending with blood, gore, and one very nice boat.

Makoto stares in Setsuna's eyes while they sit on his bed in the School Days anime series.
Makoto and Setsuna sitting on Makoto’s non-nice boat bed.

I did not think much more of Setsuna’s character than I did of the rest of the troubled cast when I first watched Setsuna. However, I will grant that my friend’s arguments in favor of Setsuna were compelling, and I ultimately granted that his points about her character development and the logic of her actions were correct. With that being said, while I accepted that Setsuna’s character is coherent and that her scenes were the best content that School Days had to offer, I came well short of accepting his argument that School Days is a good series.

This post is part of my Anime Responses series.