Runway de Waratte starts with the story of Fujito Chiyuki, an aspiring fashion model and daughter of a fledgling Modeling Agency, Mille Neige. Ever since she was little, Chiyuki's dream was to be the star model of her dad's agency and perform at Paris Fashion Week. With great looks and a gifted environment, it seemed like she was on the right track to fulfill her dream, but she soon found herself faced with a seemingly insurmountable wall when her height stopped growing at 158 cm; too short to be a professional model. Although Chiyuki still kept on believing in herself for years despite everyone telling her it's impossible, Chiyuki's resolve starts to crumble as she enters her last year of high school. This is when she meets Tsumura Ikuto, a lame classmate with a surprising talent for designing clothes, who is also considering giving up his dream due to unfortunate circumstances. Together, they begin the journey of doing the impossible in order to realize their dreams. (Source: MU)
I don’t care about the fashion industry at all, which is something we should get out of the way up front. I absolutely recognize how much talent goes into designing and producing all those outfits, and I don’t envy the pressures that come from trying to live the life of a runway model, but that doesn’t make it any easier for me to engage with the particular flavor of drama that comes from such work. Smile on the Runway had that basic fact going against it upfront, along with its strange sense of tone. Our heroine, Chiyuki, has a conflict that is both sympathetic and hard for me to take too seriously: She’s a model, a beautiful girl whose father runs Mille neige, the fashion company she dreams of working for, but she’s twenty centimeters too short to be considered for runway work. The opening scenes of the episode play this reveal as deadly serious, and even though the rest of the premiere has some jokes and a lighter tone, I still couldn’t ever get a grasp on how self-aware Smile on the Runway was about how extra it was being regarding its heroines personal drama.
It may sound like I’m really down on this episode, but truth be told, I’m surprised at how much I enjoyed it. So you can Runway de Waratte anime download and watch anime. The humor was never anything more than mildly amusing, and I still can’t bring myself to care all that much about Chiyuki’s personal obsession with becoming a supermodel, but the plot and character dynamics are well executed, and the production is great all around. A lot of this is because of Ikuto, whose story is what got me connected to Chiyuki’s character, and the show’s plot as a whole. His relationship with his sisters and his mother is much more relatable than what is going on with Chiyuki, and there’s potential for the pair’s partnership as they both climb the ranks in the fashion world. If the show can nail down the personal stakes going forward, there’s real potential for it to become a genuine crowd-pleaser, instead of the moderately but surprisingly successful one-off this premiere is.
That promise came through in the episode’s final moments, which began with me feeling incredibly anxious about some of Chiyuki’s decisions regarding the work Ikuto went out of his way to do for her, but eventually had me grinning from ear-to-ear, even though I was feeling ambivalent for most of the preceding twenty minutes. When a story can instill that kind of automatic reaction, it is doing something right. I was not expecting to give Smile on the Runway a couple of more episodes to cement its place in my seasonal watchlist, but I’ll be doing just that.