With being from the same creator as Aquatic Language (Mizu no Kotoba) and Pale Cocoon this short OVA series already caught me with just it looks. The graphics might not be as experimental as the ones from Aquatic Language and the story isn’t as surreal as the ones from both predecessors, but the series still just beautiful to watch. Also because I haven’t seen something that deals about the possible self-awareness of sophisticated androids for some time now the story is interesting for me, too. I guess with EVE no Jikan Studio Rikka makes a first test run with fully fledged anime series and I would be quite interested to see more of them in the future.
Archive for the ‘Drama’ Category
With Tower of Druaga a highly enjoyable RPG-style fantasy anime has finally been produced again. Not too serious, not too comical, but a healthy mixture of both. A nice set of characters to root for, enough drama between them, nice monster slayings, good music and artwork and a hell of story twists at the end. Of course it isn’t perfect and there are as always some things one can criticize. For example didn’t fit the final boss well into the animation because it was CGI and the world and plot per se felt pretty artificial. But that is because the origin of this anime is a simple Pac-Man styled arcade game where one has to fight through sixty levels of a tower filled with monsters and I think they squeezed a quite good story out of this little material and made good fun of it at times themselves.
All in all a pretty nice watch and I’m surely looking forward for the next seasion in 2009.
Man, I already heard that this episode would be pretty bad, but this… . That the story of the whole arc is quite simple to guess and predictable is one thing, but the “climax” of the arc in this episode was so badly written and arranged that it figuratively hurt to watch, especially for somebody like me who decided to like this show no matter what. Well, they still have one arc left for the Allison part of this show to somehow find back on track, but I’m rather pessimistic about that.
Also I feel a bit cheated that the yellow biplane has more screentime in the opening than in the actual show itself.
I really like this series. The characters are likeable and their interaction nice to watch, the comedic elements are fun and getting some neat animated aerial action is a big bonus. But because of this, this series obvious and just oh too common flaws are especially irritating. For example, the conclusion of the first arc was just way too rushed. They took they fair time to introduce the characters, the world they live in and their motivation to go on the treasure hunt. Then, at the moment the main characters are gathered and one expect the real hunt to finally start, they just find the treasure in the most anticlimactic way possible. And what they find might be quite nice, granted, but that this finding let peace break out between two country which had a war ongoing for more than a hundred years, a time span more than long enough to grow lots of hard feelings, is just implausible for me.
The second arc starts as weak as the first ended with a rather generic and easy to guess storyline at the time one realise the next big common flaw made here, which is that those who look like nice and friendly people are in fact nice and friendly and just can’t be villainous ones (except for the major evil guy of course maybe). This was extra disappointing for me because I was quite happy at first as it seemed like this flaw would be avoided here. But at least they wrapped up the introduction in the first two episodes this so they can take some more time for the conclusion now.
These flaws don’t ruin the series, but the experience could be much greater with a better pace and some twisty surprises in the story. But in the end I’ve only seen the first six episodes so far and there is plenty of time left to make a change for the (even) better, especially if they finally include some biplanes again.
Thirty years ago, at the beginning of the Seika Era (a fictionally era settled in the present time), the so called “Media Cleansing Act” was passed in Japan. This act allows the central government to censor any media, especially books, at its liking to protect the citizens from any bad influence. Because the term “bad influence” can mean a lot this act quickly became a freeticket for the government to censor anything bothersome and to cut short human rights. The Media Cleansing Committee was created to ensure that the censorship is followed and even use of force permitted for them in order to do so. The only counterweight to balance out this grim development became the simultaneously passed “Library Freedom Act”. This law grants the libraries, which are under the jurisdiction of local governments, the right to acquire any type of media that they find worth to be conserved, making those libraries the last save spot for free speech and real democracy in the state. To defend the libraries against raids of the Media Cleansing Committee the Defense Organization was called to life to maintain the functionality of each library and, in the worst case, to fight armed against any intruder.
This is the world Iku Kasahara grows up. In her teenage years she felt the consequences of the arbitrary censorship herself as the final volume of her favourite children’s series got to be taken away from her right at the moment she wanted to buy. She resisted to hand over the book and shortly before it was violently taken from her a member of the Defense Organization helped her out. In the end she was able to keep this special book. This man became her personal role model and now, at the age of 22, she tries to follow his example and joins the Defense Organization to help the people. But that is no easy task.
Because I didn’t knew much about Toshokan Sensou beside the title (Library Wars) and some artwork pictures I thought it would be a comedy, something like Full Metal Panic. Well, it did turn out to be more serious and “only” with the normal anime comedy elements. But that isn’t a bad thing. The scenario about governmental censorship with only few being able to resist is quite interesting, the quality is high so far and the characters are likeable. Of course the idea of a quasi-war between two fractions in a stable state both backed up by law is a bit implausible, but absorbing none the less.
Allison and Lillia
The countries of the Roxcheanuk Confederation and the United Kingdom of Bezel Iltoa have been in the state of war for the past 130 years and a loosely armistice has been in effect for the last 10 years. In this uncertain times the childhood friends Allison, a pilot of the Roxche Air Force and Wil, a talented student, are told by an old and apparently senile man about a treasure hidden somewhere in the Bezel Iltoa Kingdom which content holds the potential to end the ongoing conflict once and for all. Not long after the man gets kidnapped before their own eyes. They try to rescue him, but in the end they can only watch him being flown out by plane. With a captured biplane they begin the pursuit which leads them toward the Bezal Iltoa Kingdom and into a unknown future.
Granted, the basic story of Allison and Lillia is as simple as the outlay of the two countries that are in conflict here, but from what I’ve seen so far I think it can become a quite entertaining treasure hunt. Both leading characters and their interaction are likeable and the artwork and the CG both might not look that fancy, but still pretty nice. And what I really like is the promise of lots of biplanes and similar designed planes to be seen in this series.
Hikari Hanazono is teached in martial arts practically since her birth and has never been bested by anyone. Anyone except one, Kei Takishima, whom she met at the age of six and has never been able to beat in any kind of challenge since then, although she tried whenever and whatever she could. Years later they both attend the same elite school, the Private Hakusen Academy. The pupils of this school are separated in the classes A to F accordingly to their grades and the seven best of the A class have a extra class of their own, the Special A class, with many extra privileges and rights. Both Hikari and Kei are part of this Special class with Hikari being the second best and Kei, of course, being the best of all pupils. Being looked upon by the rest of the pupils with adoration and jealousy they continue their contest which unnoticed (at least by Hikari) already has turned into love.
So far Special A seems to be another story of a dense girl who finally has to discover her true feelings toward the boy she always argues with and always gets teased by, but maybe it turns out to be a enjoyable mix of Kare Kano and Ouran after all. The potential is certainly present and could be exploit if the characters attain some depth in the run of the series and if the apparent conflict between the Special A class and the lower classes will be played out right. I would be rather sad if this will turn out to be a pure glorification of the elite class who spins around its own problems while the lower classes only serves as worshippers and cheating scum to make the Special A class appear even brighter. Oh, and by the way, am I the only one who thinks that SA is a rather bad abbreviation to label a elite formation of a (otherwise) brown-coated group of people? I might be a bit picky here, but at least it serves for some unintended strangeness in this series.
It’s good to see that Shakugan no Shana got pretty entertaining again in those last few episodes. With the end of the forced relationship troubles the series is finally able to recreate the feeling of the first season. It’s not that the somehow similar love-triangle between Shana, Kazumi and Yuji in the first season was uninteresting nor unimportant, but the second instalment of this theme with the addition of Konoe/Hecate was just a pain to watch, mostly because they forgot to make it funny in some ways I guess.
Well, luckily they are now back on track and with Sabrac quite a villain was introduced in the last episode. Normally I would say that he is much too overpowered to make a real good and interesting villain, but I really like him. Don’t know the exact reason why, maybe because he respects his opponents skills and doesn’t act too arrogant toward them, maybe because he doesn’t rub his superior-ness too much in the viewers face, maybe because he doesn’t use to much or to few words or maybe because he doesn’t look like some silly walking parking meter or something like that, but actually quite wicked.
Definitely one point that’s in his favour is that he made Wilhelmina fight him to her fullest, which was a real feast to watch.