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Smile Down the Runway compares poorly to Paradise Kiss | Pro Club Bd

One of the most intriguing aspects of the anime medium is that two shows can have similar settings and discuss similar topics while still being starkly different from one another. At times, however, one show can feel like a pale imitation of the others while shedding light on their colleague’s flaws and issues – and nowhere is this more evident than on Smile down the runway and paradise kiss.

Smile down the runway is based on the manga written and illustrated by Kotoba Inoya. The anime adaptation was made by Ezo’la and hit the screens in January 2020. The story follows Ikuto Tsumura and Chiyuki Fujito, two teenagers who dream of making it big in the fashion industry and form an unlikely team to pursue their dreams.

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paradise kiss is based on the manga written and illustrated by Ai Yazawa while its screen adaptation was released in 2005 and animated by Madhouse. The protagonist, Yukari Hayasaka, meets a group of fashion designers who desperately want her to model for them. This development throws Yukari into the cutthroat world of fashion, forcing her to confront her ups and downs while simultaneously grappling with her desires and the reality of her dreams.

Although these two series are superficially similar, they differ greatly in execution. paradise kiss offers a much more complex narrative than Smile down the runwaythe feels like many other anime shows where the heroes overcome the odds to achieve their dreams no matter what obstacles stand in their way. While there are emotional twists, they’re never as complex or fleshed out. runway follows the template of the Shonen story in many ways, only with fashion design instead of fighting or sports. While it touches on some of the fashion world’s downbeat elements, like the pain of rejection, these are treated more like goals to be overcome. They are not explored beyond the surface and solved in predictable ways.


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paradise kiss, on the other hand, offers a much deeper and more complex experience that feels more mature all around. The characters are complex, flawed and deeply human. paradise kiss could feature some of anime’s most believable young adults — especially when it comes to romance — and viewers who’ve attended art school will likely find that the characters remind them of other students they’ve interacted with. Each character has nuance and depth, each has their own issues and quirks and is given enough spotlight time to better understand them.


Aside from that, paradise kiss The characters grow noticeably as the story progresses. Not only do you get better or more confident; Rather, they improve in some areas while other parts of their attitude become worse and more flawed. You can see their personalities and looks change as the show’s various events expose them to new experiences and transform them as people. Nowhere is this better seen than in Yukari Hayasaka – despite starring in the lead, she has shown to be just as flawed as the others, particularly in handling their romantic feelings.

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paradise kiss also has a much more unique style and look unlike any other available anime with art that perfectly captures the alternative fashion scene of the early 2000s. It’s also lavishly detailed, especially when it comes to outfits. The characters change their clothes frequently, and all of these outfits are really realized and detailed. Each costume is a perfect fit for the person wearing it while also fitting in with the alternative fashion trends of the time, all of which add to the chaotic and experimental feel of the story.

While Smile down the runway is newer and a bit smoother, it doesn’t have such a distinct style. That’s not to say the series is lacking, as its outfit creation sequences are beautifully animated. It’s just that large parts of the series look like many other modern day anime shows and differ little from their competitors.


The difference between paradise kiss and Smile down the runway is day and night. While runway is a decent anime with a good plot, paradise kiss is a fantastically written tour de force with outstanding graphics, excellent characterization and a beautifully written story full of complexity and relatability. While Smile down the runway is an entertaining story paradise kiss will stick with viewers after they finish it.

Smile Down the Runway is now streaming on Hulu and Funimation.

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