Original Run: October 16, 2022 - December 25, 2022 Number of Episodes: 11 Genre: Comedy, Science Fiction, Supernatural, Slice of Life Based on the Series Created By: Madoka Kashihara
***Warning, the following may contain spoilers for The Little Lies We All Tell. Reader discretion is advised.***
On the surface, best friends Rikka, Chiyo, Tsubasa, and Sekine (voiced respectively by Chiemi Tanaka, Natsumi Murakami, Megumi Han, and Ayane Sakura) are your average middle students living their normal lives. Although these four try to go about their days without much fuss, strange occurrences always seem to happen around them. Despite appearances, these girls each have a secret:
- Rikka, cute and cuddly, is an extraterrestrial colonel fighting in a galaxy-wide rebellion who crash-landed on Earth.
- Chiyo, beautiful and graceful, is a hardened master ninja on the run from the clan she abandoned.
- Tsubasa, rugged and handsome, is actually a boy who has been unable to stand up to his bully of a twin sister and her outrageous demands.
- Sekine, crafty and easygoing, is a psychic who sees the inner workings of Rikka and Chiyo’s minds. However, her powers don’t work on members of the opposite gender.
Regardless of what they hope to hide from one another, Rikka, Chiyo, Tsubasa, and Sekine are rarely seen apart. And thanks to clever deceptions, willful ignorance, and good old dumb luck, their respective oddities largely go unnoticed. After all, who doesn’t have their own little lie?
The Little Lies We All Tell is a series that started with its best foot forward. Within the opening seconds, you know what type of this show this will be: absurdly silly, slapsticky, and unapologetically goofy. Therefore, any notions that this is an anime with tendencies of dramatic tension and strong character growth are best left at the door.
Such a setup is not a negative. On the contrary, The Little Lies We All Tell finds itself in good company along such shows as Asobi Asobase and other tongue-in-cheek school life anime. At least, the first half of this series does that – but we’ll discuss that later in the review.
If there is nothing else, know that this show had more than a handful of extremely funny moments throughout its run. And The Little Lies We All Tell success in comedy was thanks entirely to its main cast of characters: Rikka, Chiyo, Tsubasa, and Sekine.
This series’ most significant success was turning its leads’ lies into personalities that were far more substantial than simple on-paper gimmicks. Although Rikka’s alien technology, Chiyo’s ninjitsu, Tsubasa’s actual gender, and Sekine’s psychic abilities were catalysts for many outlandish circumstances, they were traits that never disappeared. No matter what was going on, if something clashed with whatever secret one of the friends was hiding, they would act accordingly.
Such interactions were most common with Sekine’s ability to know what Rikka and Chiyo were thinking. Whenever the space colonel or the ninja relapsed into who they actually were, look at what Sekine was doing. Odds were she was reacting to whatever insane thing her friends were thinking (or in the process of doing).
While such inside knowledge caused (likely unintentionally) Sekine to be the most critical member of the group, they all had their moments in the spotlight. At any time, one of these four could and did hold their own as this show’s sole main character.
The best thing The Little Lies We All Tell managed to do was establish a balance between Rikka, Chiyo, Tsubasa, and Sekine. Their secrets proved to be satisfyingly compatible.
Unsurprisingly, such a comment at face value doesn’t make much sense. How could the magnitude of Tsubase living as a girl be on the same level as Rikka being an alien from outer space?
Well, first, you need to remember that this show did not take itself at all seriously. Thus, it didn’t bother with matters such as sound logic. As long as everything got from point A to point B, it was mission accomplished regardless of the means used.
Second, the lies themselves weren’t the things being compared. Instead, what leveled playing field was how their lies could potentially damage the relationship they had with one another.
For example, there was an unexpectedly sobering moment when Tsubasa got to be his actual self around Rikka, Chiyo, and Sekine. Since the others thought the Tsubasa they were interacting with was their girlfriend’s brother, they treated him as a stranger. So in spite of being with his three best friends, Tsubasa found himself isolated
Yes, The Little Lies We All Tell was, at its core, an off-the-wall comedy show. Nevertheless, it didn’t disregard the stress its four leads were under when it came to keeping their secrets.
Based on the last section, it sounds as though The Little Lies We All Tell has the making for us to consider it a small gem of the Fall 2022 season. Admittedly, it has many of the necessary quirks that allow it to be an enjoyable watch.
Unfortunately, that is mainly in the first half of the show.
The longer this series went on, the more repetitive things began to feel. The Little Lies We All Tell struggled to make it to the end of its run.
To give credit where it is due, the show’s latter half had its moments. That was where we got the more memorable character moments. However, these instances were in stark contrast to the dryness that was The Little Lies We All Tell’s sense of humor.
This series didn’t lose its touch. Instead, the joke simply got old. You can only laugh at Rikka’s misunderstanding of Earth culture, using her alien technology to cause havoc, and silliness ensues so many times.
Ultimately, The Little Lies We All Tell ran out of material that worked. Even though the show’s run was only eleven episodes, it was gasping for breath at the end.
On a bike ride, nothing is more thrilling than speeding down a large hill. If said hill is tall enough, you use your momentum to clear the next incline without any effort. This series is equivalent to what happens when your speed is not enough to make it over that lip.
Or in other words, while things were fun for much of the way, there just wasn’t enough power to make it to the end.
Although this series had a solid main cast, the weight of its absurd nature was too much. As such, The Little Lies We All Tell is one you can skip.
But these are my thoughts; what are yours? Have you seen this show; how would you advise The Little Lies We All Tell? Leave a comment below because I would love to hear what you have to say.
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