Don’t you just want to cringe so hard at your childhood memories of hardcore roleplaying as your own anime character? Wanna cringe even harder at someone your age still doing the same thing after all this time? It’s no complicated watch order mind you, but it is a worthy rollercoaster of excitement all of its own.
This is because this particular Love, Chunibyou & Other Delusions watch order simply loves to jump back and forth with the idea of accepting edginess as normal and as a syndrome. The result? Sensible characters constantly carry the feeling of social dread, while the not-so-sensible ones marvel at the past achievements of their supposedly reformed peers.
Well, sad to say that KyoAni didn’t pull a Haruhi Suzumiya on this one. Apart from certain prequel-sequel-related issues, you should be able to align both release orders and chronological orders quite closely. Do take note though, that even within the respective TV anime series, a lot of flashbacks are going to be mixed in. So in a strict sense, not a single order will be perfectly timeline-proof.
1. Chronological order
This is the primary watch order based on how events unfolded. KyoAni had a bit of artistic freedom when it comes to other details, but at least you can still mostly match the arcane source material with the events of the adaptation. Also, it should be noted that the Rikka Version (“Rikka perspective”) happens concurrently with the first season (lots of recycled footage from the first season as well).
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! (All Episodes)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Shorts/Lite
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Sparkling… Slapstick Noel (special)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Rikka Version (movie)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Rikka Version Lite
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Heart Throb (All Episodes)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Heart Throb Shorts/Lite
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Heart Throb: The Rikka Wars (special)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Heart Throb Specials
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Take on Me (movie)
2. By release order
This is… also the primary watch order based on how events unfolded. Don’t worry, there’s isn’t any over-arching saga in this series anyway. And you’ll certainly find the innocent fun and well-timed drama/romance good enough that you won’t even realize you’ve consumed the entire thing.
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! (1st Season) (2012)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Shorts/Lite (2012)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Sparkling… Slapstick Noel (2013)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Rikka Version (2013)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Heart Throb Shorts/Lite (2013)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Heart Throb (2nd Season) (2014)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Rikka Version Lite (2014)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Heart Throb: The Rikka Wars (2014)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Heart Throb Specials (2014)
Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions! Take on Me (2018)
Yup, the Shorts/Lite for Heart Throb did come a month prior, in December 2013, before the anime started airing officially in January 2014.
Plot of Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions
Yuuta Togashi has just recently transferred to a new school after vowing to completely leave and move on with his edgy past. He had a certain period during middle school, when he alienated himself from class by genuinely believing himself to have supernatural powers like a manga or anime protagonist. Being completely embarrassed with this, he attempts a fresh start in senior high school. Unfortunately, a still-edgy and delusional girl Rikka Takanashi, has discovered Yuuta’s secret and inevitably becomes part of his daily life.
As more characters are introduced, we see even more facets of this chunibyo phenomenon, eventually leading Rikka to form a school club dedicated to it named, “Far-East Magical Napping Society – Summer Thereof”. Much to the chagrin of our protagonist, he has to once again deal with the very thing he has sworn to bury forever. This time, through multiple people of his age, and with an ever-solidifying straight-man role.
With all the members’ relationships getting more and more entangled with each other, Yuuta and the audience learns in stark irony, that there are things to be taken seriously with this edgy phenomenon far more than just its social disadvantages…
Consciously knowing the escape from reality
Chunibyo (chuunibyou), literally “8th Grade Syndrome”, is a word that has been within regular modern Japanese use since the ’90s. Countless animes have also already used the term since the 2000s. However, the word first undoubtedly entered the western fandom radar when Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions (Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai) first arrived on the scene, with an absolute and definitive focus on such a theme.
Since then, people have already directly associated being edgy or immaturely delusional of TV and games with the word, even as we are quite far from the first time this series took off. So much so, that the word chuuni itself has become as otaku-evergreen today as other Japanese words like senpai, sensei, or… shounen!
Speaking of the term, are you interested in perhaps other more action-filled series that could tickle the inner chuuni within you? How about taking a good look at our best shounen anime list?