Silver Spoon

Silver Spoon

Silver Spoon anime series cover art
Silver Spoon

Series Overview

Silver Spoon (Gin no Saji / 銀の匙) is a simple love story about a man and his pig. Okay, maybe that’s not an entirely accurate synopsis, but it’s far more accurate than you might expect. It’s actually a slice of life comedy series about an agricultural high school.

The series explores many different aspects of agriculture but focuses heavily on livestock. We primarily see the students taking care of horses, chickens, cows, and pigs. Of course, with all those animals to feed, there are also many acres of crops at the school as well.

However, the first season doesn’t go into crops at all. They’re mentioned in regards to feeding the livestock, but that’s about it. And based on this first season, I’m guessing crops aren’t going to be a main focus of the second season either.

But, what I think sets this series apart from other slice of life offerings is that it’s not just about some fun life with farm animals. It goes into all the details that we as consumers don’t think about — such as the fact that these animals are raised to be slaughtered.

When I eat a burger, I don’t think “this used to be a cute cow that someone raised.” That’s exactly what the protagonist of Silver Spoon is forced to confront. Well, not with a cow, but with a pig which he chose to name and raise on his own.

Going along with that, the idea of being self-sufficient and cooking food made from local ingredients is also key to the series. All of the food the students at the school eat comes directly from the animals and crops they raise.

Characters

Yuugo Hachiken is the protagonist of the series. He’s the only student who doesn’t have a farming background and only applied to Yezo because he wanted to get far away from his family. He doesn’t know what he wants to do with his life, but maybe his time at Yezo will help him figure it out.

Aki Mikage is the female lead as well as Hachiken’s primary love interest (if you don’t count Pork Bowl the pig). Mikage is a member of the equestrian club, which she convinces Hachiken to join since sports clubs are mandatory for all Yezo students.

The only other character I would really call a “main” character is Ichirou Komaba. He’s not as prominent as Hachiken and Mikage, but he’s still important. He has dreams of becoming a professional baseball player so that he can use the money to help his family’s dairy farm.

Yuugo Hachiken and Pork Bowl from the anime series Silver Spoon
Yuugo Hachiken and Pork Bowl

Honestly, I didn’t find too many of the supporting characters to be all that memorable. In fact, I didn’t realize Tokiwa and Nishikawa were different characters until like 6 or 7 episodes into the series. But, there are a few that I enjoyed even if they didn’t play major roles.

Tamako Inada is close to a main character because she’s part of the same group as Hachiken, but she’s mostly just used for gags. Her family runs a “gigafarm,” a huge farm that makes use of the latest technology. But what makes Tamako a good character is that she’s always looking for ways to profit from whatever she, or anyone else, does.

My personal favorite supporting character, though, is Mayumi Yoshino. Her interest is in cheese making. But the reason she’s my favorite is simply that she’s the cutest girl of the series. Sorry, Mikage fans — Yoshino is better.

Does it Make Me Want to be a Farmer?

I tend to enjoy slice of life anime that are about activities I don’t have any interest in doing myself. For example, I don’t want to go camping in the winter or fishing, but I’m interested in series about those activities regardless. But, there’s usually a short period of time after watching a series like that when I think it could be fun to do those activities.

Basically, I like the idea of many of those activities. But then once I think about everything that actually goes into those activities, I quickly realize that I don’t actually want to participate in them.

What about Silver Spoon, though? Did it make me think that raising farm animals could be fun? No. Not at all. Look, pigs are my favorite animals, and I liked seeing them while watching this anime. But at no point did it make me think raising a pig would be an enjoyable experience.

Yuugo Hachiken eating some unappetizing-looking pizza from the anime series Silver Spoon
Yuugo Hachiken eating some unappetizing-looking pizza

If I want to interact with a farm animal, I can just go to a petting zoo. Raising any sort of livestock, even like a singular chicken, is way more of a commitment than I would ever make. Can you tell that I also don’t have kids?

There’s also the fact that I generally don’t like farm animals. Horses are a no from me. Cows are okay, I guess, but I’d still rather not interact with them. I like pigs when they’re small. And as for chickens, they’re basically the worst birds possible.

I’m proud of Hachiken for adjusting to his new farmer life at Yezo. But that sounds like hell to me. I get that the series is all about trying new things and making the most of your situation. I’d just rather not try new things, though, if that’s the situation I’m going to be in.

Conclusion

Silver Spoon is a 7/10. It was actually better than I was expecting it to be. I thought it would be a 5 or 6 considering the subject matter and visual style of the anime. But, I have to admit that I was pleasantly surprised.

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