From Me to You: Kimi ni Todoke – Episode 1 Recap & Review

Love At First Sight

Episode 1 of From Me to You: Kimi ni Todoke titled ‘First-Time Feelings’ starts with Sawako Kuronuma remembering the first time she met Shota Kazehaya under a cherry blossom tree on the first day of school. He does small talk with her and she shows him the right direction to the school. She reveals that it was the first time someone had stirred her heart.

However, at school, no one likes her as they think she is scary. Everyone calls her Sadako from The Ring as she has an eerie vibe despite being friendly to everyone. Kazehaya is the only one who treats her normally and greets her by her first name Kuronuma. One day in class, Kazehaya announces that they are holding a courage test and she overhears Yano and Yoshida saying that it would be cool if they got a ghost.

Later, the teacher arrives and asks for a volunteer for the summer otherwise he will pick one at random. As Sawako sees everyone avoiding it, she volunteers. Kazehaya observes that she always does odd jobs and offers himself. However, she insists as she likes to look after the flowers and he acquiesces.

She is happy to take care of the flowers and a middle school friend spots her as she calls her Sadako. They catch up but the friend is sad that Sawako doesn’t have any friends. But Sawako says that Kazehaya looks out for her. She says he is nice, in fact too nice. At that moment, Kazehaya overhears them and the friend tells her to apologize as he may think she is being sarcastic.

She tells him that it is a compliment and he laughs as he says they should talk more often. Sawako feels nice that while she is always misunderstood, Kazehaya understands her. He says she is nicer as even Sawako is a pleasant name and she is touched that he doesn’t call her Sadako even though her friends do. He tells her to come to the test of courage and she agrees.

The next day she greets Kazehaya but his friends get scared and run off. She, however, is happy that he doesn’t shy away from her. As they are going home, Yano and Yoshida wonder how cool it would be if Sawako played the ghost at the test. She goes up to them and says she can do it. They say they don’t want to force her but she says she would like to play the part.

However, she says she doesn’t have a sixth sense to be perfect and they laugh as they say they never expected her to. Yoshida cries because of Sawako’s courage and they bond at how weird they are. At home, Sawako practises how to be a ghost while her father worries that she is being bullied. But her mother realises that she is having fun and just has a weird sense of humour.   

That night all of the classmates pair up and get ready for the test. Kazehaya waits for Sawako with Yano and Yoshida hinting that she is already there. Meanwhile, Sawako disguises herself as a ghost and has fun as she scares all the students who fall, scream and run. She scares Kazehaya as well and then greets him while he counters that he was just worried that she couldn’t make it.

He asks if she is scared and she says she likes the nighttime. He agrees and decides to sit with her. She asks why he doesn’t have a partner and he says he was waiting for her. He then asks about her nickname and she says her friend called her Sadako by mistake in 4th grade and since then it stuck. She doesn’t mind it since it allows people to remember her.

He is impressed at how easygoing she is and Yano and Yoshida happen upon them. They tease Kazehaya and bring a drink for Sawako as they compliment her for hard her work. She calls them kind and Kazehaya is in awe at how positive she is. She thanks him and he suddenly blushes. His friends show up and he goes back with them. 

As she goes back home, her father worries but she tells him that she had fun. Her parents are happy for her but Sawako’s mood suddenly dampens as she realises she won’t be able to see Kazehaya during the summer break.

On the last day of school, everyone gets ready for the break. Yoshida cheers Ryu, an athlete while the class president gives away gifts to the winners of the courage test. Kazehaya comes last and as a penalty, the boys joke that he needs to date Sawako as he was cornered by her last night. Yano and Yoshida are unhappy with the mockery while Kazehaya says it is rude.

As he defends her, the boys jeer as they think he likes her. Sawako defends him by saying that he is just kind to everyone and she likes that about him. That night she worries about his reputation and hopes she cleared up any misunderstanding.

On the first day of the break, she goes to school all alone. She tears up as she wonders if Kazehaya will avoid her because of her words the day before and is surprised to see him coming up to her. He brings gifts from their classmates as they apologise. He calls her the MVP of the class and hopes to see more of her during the summer. She thanks him for being kind and talking to her.

She says she wants to be more like him and respectful to everyone. He is surprised and chuckles as he tells her she doesn’t know his true feelings. He recalls the first time they met on the first day of school when she had helped him and he had fallen in love at first sight. He hopes his feelings will reach her one day.

The Episode Review

Episode 1 of the Netflix original J-drama, From Me to You: Kimi ni Todoke was absolutely adorable and lighthearted. Even the sad moments were short and quickly cleared up. While the actress they have taken is actually pretty gorgeous, we have to give some credit as it is visible that the production tried to make their best to make her look like ‘Sadako’ from the manga and anime.

The first time we see her face clearly, her foundation is lighter than her real skin tone while they added dark circles to give her a ghostly look. But they could have added a thicker and greasy wig like the movie version’s actress who was not afraid to commit.

And while fans had their doubts about the acting, we really should not judge a book by its cover as Minami Sara does play the part of the docile and shy Sawako well. It’s just a shame that she doesn’t look like the original character. By the way, did anyone else notice the similarity between her and Nanno from The Girl From Nowhere? If Sara nails her creepy smile, she would make the perfect Sawako!

Next Episode

You can read our full season review for From Me to You: Kimi ni Todoke here!

  • Episode Rating

Leave a comment