tl;dr verdict: Good first episode.
I found this show while searching through MyAnimeList’s seasonal anime page. I was initially puzzled at the anime’s title, Orange. After seeing episode 1, I still am at a loss trying to derive meaning from the obscure one-word title. Not that this really matters.
Another curious aspect of Orange was is its decision to essentially spoil the plot already in the first episode, effectively destroying what I thought was a mysterious mood setup in the majority of the first episode. As viewers we are inundated with many questions within just a few minutes– and indeed, this is what a good first episode should do, to create a curiosity and puzzlement within the watcher. Why does Naho have so many regrets? What does she regret? What happens to Kakeru? However, a lot of this suspense dissipates after a particular scene.
The scene I’m talking about is where 26-year-old Naho stands beside Suwa, who is holding their child. Naho holds flowers that are meant for Kakeru. We learn that Kakeru is gone, and perhaps not just metaphorically from Naho’s life.
However, my original assumption that the mystery had been diluted was too harsh of a verdict. Gone were my questions of whether or not Naho ends up with Kakeru– these ponderings were replaced with new musings, like why didn’t the romance work out? What is Kakeru’s backstory?
Overall, I found the first episode effective in capturing my attention, and I’ll be watching episode 2 shortly.