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English: Bamboo Blade
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Oct 2, 2007 to Apr 1, 2008
Producers: Square Enix, AIC A.S.T.A., FUNimation EntertainmentL, d-rights, Studio Tulip, The Klock Worx, flying DOG
Duration: 24 min. per episode
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or olderL represents licensing company
Score: 7.541 (scored by 24264 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
2 based on the top anime page.
Popular Tagscomedy kendo school sports
Dec 31, 2013
Bamboo Blade was really special for me, because I was feeling kind of down when I started watching it, the reason being that I had just finished "Code Geass: Hangyaku no Lelouch R2" and I loved that show so much that I actually felt "the void" afterwards. For those who do not know what the void is, it is basicly a kind of feeling you can get when you've finished a really good show, and this feeling makes you kind of "empty" inside. You feel like you're never going to experience anything like that show ever again. While I was feeling the void I could not enjoy anime, and thus I ended up putting tons of shows on hold. I guess that most people can see where this is going, so I'll just wrap this little story up quickly: Bamboo Blade cured my void. It was that enjoyable, and after finishing it I felt like I could enjoy anime to it's fullest.
The story is very simple, but yet so gripping. It's simplicity is kind of what makes it shine, because it enables other elements to show really well. The story is about the Kendo teacher of Muroe High School, who happens to be almost completely out of cash. He can't even pay for his own food, and thus he rarely eats anything at all. But one day his old friend and senpai makes him a seemingly unreal deal: free sushi for a whole year if his kendo team can defeat his senpai's well trained warriors. He accepts and there the search for members begins.
As much as I love this kind of story that leaves so much open for further events, I'd still have to say that the idea itself is not all that original or in any way fantastic, it is just ok. It is rather how the story is presented that makes it truly sparkle. The already existing team captain Kirino Chiba and the teams sensei(who for the record is called Toraji Ishida) provide a whole bunch of funny moments while searching for members, but I will talk more about this duo when I get to the characters.
This is what first got me interested in the show. I was showed a few scenes from the show through a certain reviewer on Youtube, and I immediately fell in love with the animation they used. The animation is not all that amazing, but it has a certain charm to it that made it hard for me to look away.
It is has a lot of detail, and it doesn't use many different shades of a color, but rather uses a few, much more noticeable variations of certain colors.
The animation, just like the story, shines thanks to it's simplicity. It just fits the show really well, and that makes it easier to concentrate on what's happening while watching.
While the soundtrack for this show is not amazing on it's own, it does fit the show really well, so I gave it the score 7. It was good for this certain show, but nothing more. Also the sound effects used when the swords hit and stuff like that fits really well.
I watched Bamboo Blade dubbed, which to a lot of people might be a weird thing to do, but the dub was really good. All of the voices fit their characters personality and the voice acting itself was very well executed. I have heard some of the japanese original, and it sounds pretty good as well. I think that either would work, so if you prefer dubbed anime, go for that. If you prefer subbed anime, watch the japanese version.
All of the mains characters are really good. They each have their own personality, and when you combine them they all group so perfectly together in different ways. The only character that I ever had a problem with was Danjuuro Eiga. Not his personality, but rather the way he looked. His character was designed in a totally different way than the others, and that felt really weird and distracting.
The first two members of the kendo team were, as previously mentioned, the team captain Kirino and the coach Mr. Toraji Ishida. These two characters are with you from the start, and they really compliment each others personalities well. Other than those two I won't mention the names of the other team members, as they can be considered spoilers for some people.
---PERSONAL ENJOYMENT (10)---
As I mentioned at the start of this review, this show was really enjoyable for me. It brought me a lot of happiness and I really can't find anything to complain about when it comes to this part. It just fulfilled it's purpose perfectly for me, and hopefully it will do the same for you if you deside to give Bamboo Blade a chance.
Bamboo Blade is a light hearted show of very good quality. It may not be for everyone, but if you like kendo, or just want a good comedy/action show to watch, then you should definitely watch this anime!
Thanks a bunch for taking a look at my review! Feel free to tell me what you thought of it, and please rate it with either "Helpful" or "Not helpful" depending on what you thought. read more
Nov 29, 2008
Pretty straight forward for the most part, basically it starts up with a struggling Kendo instructor and his team leader trying to get others into Kendo, as their club has little to no members at present. As the story progresses they meet/get new club members and then begin a road down to the final tournament to keep the instructor from losing his job after a misunderstanding with the school principle's wife. Now while the story remains very linear in this aspect, it doesn't just strictly stick to the whole "Kendo" idea, there are some nice scenes that have the girls struggling with daily life, whether it be confronting old rivals, watching a live action movie, meeting up with long time friends, to just trying to get that one part time job to earn up for a certain anime DVD collector's set that one of them wants. These play out more as sub plots on the side though, while the girls themselves make their way up the Kendo ladder. (sorry, but there is no actual love story in this anime, with the exception of one couple that already are an item from the get go) Which brings us to the Kendo itself, the series does a pretty fair job of explaining all the strategies and ropes of the sport, and never comes off as a gimmick with the whole "Kendo" tag. The first beginning episodes are good for giving decent enough back story on most of the main characters, so you never really feel like they tossed someone in the story just for the heck of it! While this is a comedy anime to be sure, it also contains quite a bit of sincere and touching moments as well between the characters, perhaps even more so than the actual comedy bits, which can also be seen as a negative depending on your perception. The biggest draw back overall, is both its linear plot twist fee storyline and slow pacing. There were times where I just wanted them to get on with it already. Despite this being an all female cast for the most part, I did find it interesting that there was no echhi factors in this title whatsoever. Which is great for viewers out there who are tired of having the usual all female cast that are strictly there for the fan service.
There shouldn't be anything that viewers will find offensive, aside from occasional language and mild violence. (the action is all done in a professional and respected manner, and not over the top)
Pretty good for the most part, all characters and environments are drawn with good detail and personality. While its not the best looking series out there, it does animate it well enough to catch your attention and not come off as an over kill. I personally found some of the overall color schemes to be a bit on the bland side though, but the great and versatile character design and facial expressions make up for it quite nicely!
The music itself is good! The opening and closing themes are nice and lively, that will fill you with a sense of happiness! The background music on the other hand is pretty much this one soft violin style track, that plays during most of the series. (most of the time on the touching or heavy thought parts) Its good, just not great in the variety department as its pretty much the only real track you'll hear. Now the character's voices are awesome! From the happy and playful Kirino, to the solitary feel of Tamaki. All the voices are varied and add a distinctness to them all, and not one of them you will find annoying.
Truly the heart of the series, Bamboo Blade has some of the best character chemistry that I have seen in a long time. All of them know how to compliment eachother well, and never come off as a cliche. For example: My favorite characters were Miyako (a heart throb that has two personalities) and Dan (a short geeky guy). They are actually a couple, Miyako simply melts whenever she sees him, but acts out more aggressively when around anyone else. Its just little touches like that which make Bamboo Blade so enjoyable! While the characters do a great job to make you laugh, please keep in mind that they don't do it over the top. (well for the most part anyway) Most of the time they'll just get this wacky look to them, and simply make you laugh with their facial expressions! They all grow very close to one another as the story progresses, and by the end you will truly feel the friendship that they all share.
Bottom Line: 9/10
Bamboo Blade is a great title, but unfortunately I can't recommend it to all viewers, especially if you like plot twists and a fast paced nonlinear storyline, as this title has none of those. But if your looking for a fun (and sometimes moving) anime with great character chemistry and amusing anecdotes. Then Bamboo Blade hits the mark just right! read more
May 12, 2008
As you should already know it's a comedy about a high school kendo club, mainly consisting of (SPOILER AHEAD!) a group of girls. It all sounds like standard fare from here, and it is. The kids get involved in crazy hijinks, make silly jokes, and even have a decent amout of action in show such as this. After watching the first couple episodes, you'll most likely have a feeling if you are going to enjoy the show since the same style of jokes makes their rounds. Sometimes, its even as if they know they're making an uninspired anime and actually puts in gags and jokes that are very cliche` for the genre but leaves minor (and unique) twists for the viewers to laugh. Honestly, I think their jokes get off so well not only because of their 'semi' unique approach to joke telling, but the characters are just perfect for this show.
Like all the other great comedy (and sports) shows before it, this show puts an emphasis on the character chemistry and development. This is where the show shines the most. It's just like how they intentionally make jokes about the the comedy genre its almost looks as if they intentionally mixed the character types around to create their own uniqueness. For example there's a smart looking that is really stupid, a clumsy girl that actually has good orginizational skills, and even a really loud quiet type. Good luck finding out who im talking about, but all the main characters are like that and its one main part why the comedy feels so fresh and unique. It almost feels like they all have double personalities. But the one person that really distracted me the from the others the most is quite easliy Tamaki-chan. She definitely steals the show in my eyes. Usually the show stealing characters arent the main character (Yuki, Osaka, etc) but that isn't the case here. She is the main reason why i kept watching this show. Hirohashi Ryou did a perfect job for her voice because there is no other way to do Tamaki's voice. There are other parts of greatness in this anime but I wont spoil the show any further.
Another good point of the show is how surprisingly good the artwork is in this show for a comedy show. There are various locations that you will see throughout the show, and each are shown with such vibrant color. The backgrounds are pretty detailed, you'll see alot of particle effects, reflections, and sunbeams throughout the show. And the characters are all drawn in the typical super cute borderline sexy style which is usual for a show in this type. Of course, the emphasis was more on the females than the males and you can tell because the all the men (with one exception) all look virtually the same. Another thing, is get used to their eyes as that is what you'll be seeing for the most part.
Sound effects are nothing to be super enthusiastic about. All thought the sound is very well done, once you've heard any high school anime you've heard them all pretty much. With the exception of the yelling and screaming from all the cute girls (extra points from me). They even have the girls singing the opening and ending theme song just like all the others in this genre. Well when you have cute voiced seiyu's use them as much as possible i guess. There is one uinque and hilarious sound but you wont hear it till around episode 20. Trust me when I tell you that it will have you on the floor laughing.
There are so many fun and memorable instances in this show it's hard not to give this a perfect score. They sure did do everything right in making this "slice of life, high schoo, comedy, sports" show different from all the others. But this does follow the same formula as all the other current releases (lots of girls + comedic situations + singing seiyus). Fortunately this is one of the better ones. read more
Apr 5, 2008
Man, what a ride. Bamboo Blade has it all; comedy, drama, romance, all rolled up into one. By making fun of itself at random places and with the help of very fabulous characters, this show rises from its shoddy animation to join the elite group of anime this season that deserves your time.
I should get the not-so-good things out of the way first. The animation is pretty bad. No, not like Musashi Gundoh bad, but repeated animation, laziness supreme kind of bad. Up until the last two episodes, the same kendo swings from episode one get repeated over and over, with only the costumes changed. The backgrounds are nice watercolor pastels, but sometimes the characters look very funky. It`s hard to believe and oxymoronic that this show actually airs in HD.
But looking beyond the badness of the animation, Bamboo Blade is golden. The characters are a riot. Their voice actresses fit them perfectly. My favorite character out of the entire bunch is Kirino, with her happy-go-lucky attitude and her beautiful relationship with Saya, the hilarious redhead. Seriously, every time Saya opens her mouth, her voice cracks me up so much that I am left on the floor laughing. Kudos to her voice actress for providing her with such an amazing voice. The other characters also pad the show with relevant humor. You have acorn head/pimp Dan, his gay buddy Yuuji, the master kendo practitioner Tamaki, the klutz Azuma, the bipolar Miyako, and their failure of a teacher, Kojirou. As added bonus and hilarity, Kojirou is voiced by the ever-so-manly Kamina from Gurren Lagann, with all the same intonations and vocal gestures. It`s great.
The plot starts off as a standard shounen tournament fest, but midway through the anime branches off from the manga. Unlike most cases which this happens (cough cough Naruto filler hell), the director took very interesting directions in the plot. New characters that are just as cool as the original manga ones appear. Plot points are generally well paced and the comedy is well timed too.
The music is another strong point, with epic orchestral pieces to hot-blooded insert songs. I love the songs that play when the random Bravers appear, and I also love the clack clack sounds of the Kendo fights. I wasn`t very interested in Kendo before watching Bamboo Blade, but now I check out matches on Youtube. They`re even more intense than the anime itself.
Tamaki is sometimes too strong to the point of boredom, but Bamboo Blade always find ways to not fall too deep into that trap. Parodies and references are abundant. Facepalms, sweat marks, falling down in unison, everything`s there. You will definitely laugh at some point while watching, with the sudden bouts of unexpected humor.
The force of lesbian tendencies is strong with this one. Don`t miss it. read more
Jul 8, 2013
Bamboo Blade is a comedy that comes around only once every very often. Let's face it, you've seen all of this before: Broke teacher looking for a quick fix to his problem, lovable cast of female characters who just want to train in kendo and have a fun time, all wrapped up in a comedy school setting. By no means is it anything new in the anime world, but it is still a wholly charming and fun little show.
Honestly, the story isn't all that fantastic. It's very predictable and cliche, and while that isn't bad, it certainly won't win any awards. I think it's best to just accept that the story is just a setup for the truly great cast of characters to interact in, rather than a driving force for the anime.
Character design is fantastic in Bamboo Blade! Each and every character is immediately recognizable and really left a deep impression on me. I still can't look at Kirino's face without smiling, what a beautiful character. Animation is surprisingly good, you can tell that while they knew this wasn't making any major leaps in the world of anime, the animators were dedicated to their work and wanted this to look really nice, and honestly, my hat's off to them. Well done! I'd also like to point out the lack of ecchi - there were a lot of times in this anime that could have focused on cheap panty shots and questionable ecchi situations, but it did a good job at not offending me at all.
The soundtrack to the anime is kind of weak, but it makes up for it with the fantastic voice acting. Both the English and Japanese versions are very well-done, although I prefer watching in Japanese with subs. All of the voice actresses really capture the style of the anime very well, from the comedy scenes to the more serious ones, I was captivated the whole time by their voices.
And here's the major selling point of this anime. Really, when it comes to writing characters, there's nothing more frustrating than a good character that has poorly-written interactions with other characters. Bamboo Blade doesn't have this problem though, as all of the characters are well-written and enjoyable, but also their chemistry is superb and all of their interactions really make sense and contribute a lot to my enjoyment of this anime.
It may be a pretty typical style of anime, but that didn't keep me from thoroughly enjoying it. I would recommend this to anyone who wants a nice, fun anime to sit back and enjoy.
So, now that I've finished this review, I've decided it'd be a good idea to actually watch Bamboo Blade and see if it matches up with my review. read more
Aug 1, 2008
I thought the story was very good. I usually don't like sports-related anime, but a kendo club full of eccentric girls (and you know they are if you've seen this) and the two lone guys is something that grabbed my attention. It was nice to see how their relationships with each other progressed and what was going to happen with the club.
I really liked the art for this series. To compare it with other series - the art is a lot like Ichigo Mashimaro or Minami-ke (the first season, not the second season where they got lazy and didn't color in the extras); which is the type I enjoy. If you're really into that avant garde type of animation, it won't suit your tastes.
I'm not really sure what falls into this category... I'm not one to listen to Opening or Endings... but the voice acting was done really well. I thought all the voices matched the characters and they did well to match their emotions.
The characters are the best part of this series. Every character is eclectic in some way or another. The most eclectic however is Dan-kun, which... you'll see why if you watch the series. He's special <3.
Enjoyment & Overall -
I thoroughly enjoyed this series. It takes a lot for me to actually WANT to keep watching a series. Bamboo Blade even made me want not go to class because I didn't want to stop watching it. Overall it gets 10/10 from me!
Recommended For: Anyone who likes comedy, a bit of slice-of-life, school settings, and sports series. There is the near loli-factor if you're into that too... boys... I have a feeling a lot of them will like Tama-chan :D.
Jul 23, 2012
The plot is pretty simple, which is basically a school comedy revolving around the kendo club, they practice, go to tournaments and recruit new members along the way. Although the plot is simple, it also works because of the characters. The series is light hearted and has a fairly large amount of comedic moments which are actually pretty funny. The pace is also just right for this kind of show. Other than there is nothing really spectacular about the plot but for this kind of show, it doesn't have to be.
Like I mentioned before, the characters are what drives this series. Each character has their own very unique personality (for example Kirino is very energetic but also very responsible and very caring too) and they are each explored very well. All the main characters also develop a lot during the series (such as a Tamaki opening up more) and by the end of the anime, each of the characters have grown in different ways. The chemistry developed between the characters is also unmatched by most. Each character is likable and most of the comedic moments work because of them. Without the amazing characters and development, this anime would just be another average anime with nothing memorable about it.
The art does have it's fair share of good and bad moments, the backgrounds are detailed and generally drawn pretty well but colors don't really scream out. Also many of the hits look the same in the kendo matches.
The sound does a very good job. The opening and ending really fits the kendo theme and the voice actors do a really nice job with each character.
Like many other series out there, not everyone is going to enjoy it. If you are looking for intensity and a complex plot then this genre as whole is probably not for you. However if you are looking for a good comedy, this more than holds up it's end of the bargain, as this series will have you laughing in a lot of places.
Bamboo Blade shows that unique and well developed characters can really push a series far. Even though the plot is very simple and isn't great, as a whole, it really delivers. read more
May 11, 2008
What can you really say about Bamboo Blade? Well, it's a story of 5 girls who are members of their high school kendo club. Their instructor (or sensei.. whatever) makes a bet with an old friend (who is also a rival kendo instructor) that his girls can beat the others at a kendo practice match - the prize? A years worth of free sushi. Not the best sounding prize - but a prize none the less. That aside, there are other "mini stories" that take place during the episodes as well. Incidentally, at the very beginning there's only 1 member in the kendo club - so, the first two episodes is taken up with the hilarious undertaking of recruiting new club members. They even end up with 2 male members (despite sensei's pleas to only have female members... the dirty old lech >__>) What goes on beyond episode 10 is unknown to me... so, I suppose that this is all I can say about the story - and it's probably why it only got an 8. Once I've seen more episodes - this will probably be reviewed also. And also, the 5th member of the kendo team has yet to be recruited. So, at the moment there are only 4 female members of the squad.
This anime is pretty creative when it comes to the characters - it almost always remains refreshing. And it basically keeps the viewer watching. From the cute little Tamaki-chan who absolutely adores anime (almost reminds me of Konata from Lucky ☆ Star), but lacks some social skills - to the rather psychotic, but beautiful Miya-Miya who shows her "black" side. Then there's Saya - who can be over dramatic at times, but it all adds to he charm. Team captain Kirino appears to be the sensible one - often taking over from the instructor during training. However, both Kirino and Saya make a rather decent comedy duo in some episodes.
I can't help it! Bamboo Blade has a very catchy opening theme song (which is actually performed by some members of the cast) - as well as a pretty sweet closing theme too (which is also sung by the cast). This is one of very few anime where I don't immediately click on "mute" when it comes to the openers and the closers... so, for me it's a win win soundtrack. Ok, so I have the songs on my iPod... there are you happy now?! >__< No, seriously - I really do like the themes. The only other theme that I openly like are the openers for Gunslinger Girl and Higurashi no Naku Koro ni.
Considering that I've only watched 10 episodes so far - I can quite happily say that I am immensely enjoy watching Bamboo Blade. It's definitely one of the best that I have watched (in the comedy genre) and am quite proud to place it on my favourite anime list. read more
Sep 18, 2009
It's surprising the amount of insight Bamboo Blade's silly, gag oriented characters provide on the passion for and the meaning of Kendo. Even more unthinkable is the lack of ecchi in a high school girl oriented cast clearly aimed at males. Bamboo Blade is full of wonderful surprises, but the repetitive comedy and weak action elements do nothing to fill in for its uneventful plot.
An unambitious teacher is the supervisor for Murota school's Kendo club. Throughout the years, his club has been whittled down to one hard working and devoted girl, Kirino, who loves the sport but is miffed that her teacher is always so lazy. A drunken wager with the teacher's former classmate stakes a full year of free sushi on an exhibition girl's Kendo match, and with this, he is suddenly gung ho about whipping his club into tournament shape, to the delight of Kirino. He pursues ex-members and a new child prodigy, Tamaki, to fill the ranks, and in the process, revives his old flame for Kendo.
Story & Characters
The most striking element of Bamboo Blade is how realistic and poignant, yet varied the characters' feelings towards Kendo are. Azuma, a member of the home Kendo club, adores it as a part of herself and a passion she's held since youth while Kirino enjoys the camaraderie it builds. Each of the main characters find a unique and believable relationship with Kendo, and even some of the minor characters shed words of wisdom. Most of the action elements also follow in this vein of realism. Even though many of the characters improve their skills, it's far from a "powerup" scenario. For instance, one of the home members has markedly wonderful aggression, but little skill and focus. Instead of taking the typical shounen route that would have transformed her into an unconventionally powerful prodigy, her lack of focus is a crippling handicap throughout, rendering her unable to win any matches. Just as in real life, the focus and skill is only be attained through painstaking practice along with multiple frustrating failures.
It's a little too bad that the series revolves around the tiny prodigy, Tamaki. She's a robotic character with her desire to emulate the naive heroism of her favorite Anime characters as her only displayed emotion throughout most of the series. Though she does undergo trials towards the end that expand her emotional range, her completely inhuman nature for the rest of the series had already sabotaged any possible empathy from the viewer. Unlike the other characters, Tamaki's Kendo skill goes beyond the bounds of believability; she is essentially invincible. To a lesser degree, the other characters are similarly simple caricatures for a majority of their screen time, but when Kendo gets involved, their genuine elements come through. Only when they reveal their relationship to Kendo are they not generic, run of the mill anime characters.
Many of their gags are funny for the first time, but each character has no more than 1 or 2 that repeat, and by the end they become clockwork. Interestingly, the action is often skipped over, either with a simple still screen, or just an announcement of a winner with no visuals at all. The tantalizing bit of Kendo we see animated ranges from excessive still screen usage to beautiful and accurate animation that captures the explosive, almost spastic nature of the matches. Still, even when the matches are just glanced over, we get the primary reward we desire in the reaction of the characters. Their genuine passion for the sport makes me feel their elation when they win, and their heartbreak or frustration when they lose. Watching the characters express themselves in the context of Kendo is compelling, but I didn't care a lick for the rest of the plot. All the minutia that's supposed to give added weight to the results of the matches, which is the free sushi at first, and then eventually the teacher's job, is a boring filler of screen time
Bamboo Blade is certainly far from a generic, power up sports Anime, but that novelty alone doesn't make it compelling. It's a drag to sit through at times, but the unmatched insight into Kendo, or perhaps competitive sports in general is worth wading through the other junk. read more
Sep 11, 2008
I had to admit, the beginning premise is pretty lame. Producing a championship caliber team of 5 girls just for sushi (yes, even sushi) is a pretty stupid plot. Luckily, the story never really gets into that, and the story quickly progresses to how the girls form a team and overcome diversity. I could have done with a little less of the blade braver scenes, which I didn't think really add much to the overall story (they could have introduced Rin some other way). I also would have liked to see a little more from the dudes, who looked like an afterthought; especially since they seem to have hinted at Yuuji and Tamaki getting together. From a kendo aspect, I would have to give Bamboo Blade a 9/10 since almost everything mentioned is correct: Nitto-ryu (the two sword style that Carrie uses) is a real style developed by the famous Miyamoto Musashi and is not allowed in most high schools. Jodan no kamae (which Rin uses), is also actual technique that is very rarely used (as indicated in the anime), and finally tsuki (which Tamaki uses a couple of times), is also real, incredibly hard and illegal move in most high schools (since if you miss you end up skewering your opponent in the neck). The one issue I had was in the ordering of the team, I'm not sure if it was a fansub error (Huzzah-Doremi) or the actual anime, but the actual ordering goes Senpo-Jisho-Chuken-Fukusho-Taisho, which wasn't how it was portrayed.
Overall, very good. The characters all look different and are drawn with lots of detail, except for Eiga, though that might be for comedic effect. Backgrounds are decent enough, tho I have to say I can't think of an anime with truly horrible backgrounds for a very long time. The kendo scenes are drawn very well, equipment looks realistic and the characters move with a realistic feel.
OP and ED were catchy, but at least in my opinion not ipod worthy. I did think, however, the seiyuus did a very good job, especially Tamaki and Kirino; while Tamaki's voice fell into the quiet-moe mold, Hirohashi Ryou actually put some feeling into it and created a character that truly stood out. Kirino's voice on the other hand was just funny, which is good enough for me.
Nothing really new about the characters, we have the beautiful evil girl (Miya-Miya), the leader (Kirino), the crazy good quiet moe (Tamaki), the super-talented klutz (Saotori) and the insane one (Saya). But the characters do mesh very well together and it makes up for the deficiencies of the characters to create good chemistry between the characters. For instance watching Kirino and Saya plot and scheme was like watching a manzai duo and the awkwardness of Tamaki and Yuuji together was a nice touch hinting at some romance.
Naturally, a kendoist watching an anime about kendo is going to give high marks. I'm not sure how much this series would appeal to people not informed about kendo, but to those few who are crazy enough to actually do kendo, this was pure bliss. Honestly, even if you liked the series, you probably are only getting 50% out of this anime, because there are subtleties that you have to be a kendoist to understand. That isn't to say that people who don't do kendo can't enjoy this anime; but to those who do, join kendo and watch it again!
A very, very good anime. I would definitely recommend this anime firstly to all kendoist, but secondly to everyone who enjoys a light-hearted high school anime which can be both hilarious and heart-warming when it wants. Now let's just wait for the sequel!
Jul 13, 2008
Pretty simple premise: guy in charge of the club looks to make a group of kendo chicks to compete with his ex-kendo mate's team, so that he can have a shot at his buddy's promised reward: free food for a year.
Not terribly exciting, and the way the teacher just manages to put together a team of skilled kendo experts screams plot device. Plus the couple of filler episodes distract from the main storyline, and not at the best times either.
Still, having a simple plot means there are no big plotholes to drop your balls over, and the progression in the story is for the most part smooth.
The main weakness of this anime. The animation quality is at best functional, and at worst, obviously flawed and jarring. It gets readily apparent that the studio had typically thrown its budget at the first episode; the quality degradation after that is obvious, with many features out of position, and the background detail a bare minimum. Fortunately it does pick up a bit near the end (as expected).
The designs aren't very eye-catching (with the notable exception of the oh-so-moe Tama-chan), but the characters have been drawn very distinctively, with no chance of mistaking a person for anyone else.
Functional. The OP/ED is typical, and the BGM (a decent if apparently hackjob-style effort) doesn't vary much.
Here the anime really shines. Every character's personality is distinctive, refreshing, and surprisingly believable, the chemistry is great, and the voice acting is also excellent. The character development, while skimpy for most characters except 2 (the only markdown here) is sufficient to endear one to the characters.
The whole ride was fun. Even though the story wasn't exciting, and it looked to be going nowhere at times, I found myself looking forward to the amusing interactions of the kendo club and its happenings. The down-to-earth and (mostly) realistic tone of these interactions (with the exception of Miya-Miya and the two side characters related to her) really drew me in, and at the end of every episode I found myself in better spirits.
The animation was comparatively plain bad, the music was forgettable, and the story wasn't great. But these glaring errors somehow were little more than side distractions in a wonderful viewing experience with the amazing characters and chemistry. Certainly worth a watch. read more
Apr 15, 2009
Story: To be true there isn't that much story in this kind of anime. The girls go to school, practice kendo and participate in kendo tournaments. So far there is nothing special about it. The way that rather stereotypical story is told is ok though. The fact that the story is negligible doesn't make this anime bad. Imho anime like Bamboo Blade don't really need a good story to be entertaining.
Art: The animation of Bamboo Blade is good just as expected from an anime from 2007. The character design is cute and fitting, the backgrounds are drawn well , the kendo matches are fast paced and quickly over. Nothing like other sports anime where running scenes for example are way too long and you can see the earth curvature while the characters are running over the sports field.
Sound: Imho the strongest part in Bamboo Blade was the OST. With "Bamboo Beat" and "Star Rise" Bamboo Blade has rather usual opening songs/ending songs vocaled by the female seiyuu crew which actually did a good job in voicing the characters, imho they all fit. But the best thing about the OST is the BGM. The BGM of Bamboo Blade is full of fast paced drums which fit the atmosphere of the kendo matches. On the other hand there are also slow paced songs without drums which fit the more laidback atmosphere when the girls are not doing kendo.
Character: The characters in Bamboo Blade are all very likable. They are not as flat as in other sports series because they all have other unique character traits besides loving kendo and you actually get to see it even though the anime shows about 70-80% of the time the girls in kendo practice or kendo matches.
Enjoyment: I really enjoyed Bamboo Blade because of it's atmosphere which was calm and nice in the non-fighting scenes and fast and quick in the battle scenes. The comedy part of this series is also quite good. The girls are all moe. It's a good anime to watch when you want to watch something where you don't have to think too much about what actually is happening and you want to lay back and relax.
Overall: Bamboo Blade was an quite refreshing anime, easy to watch and simply just nice. I highly recommend Bamboo Blade for people who like sports anime, school life anime and comedy anime ... Other people should also give it a try.
One last personal thing: I am sorry for my poor grammar and vocabularies but English is not my native language and so I had some troubles writing a longer text in this language. read more
Jan 31, 2013
So anyways, Bamboo Blade is basically two things. One half is a motivational show, aimed to inspire people getting into kendo. The second half is slice of life comedy around the simple lives of its characters, most of which are silly girls. The problem here is that it fails to be captivating in both cases, simply because it is not extreme or fanatic enough. The kendo part for example is just dull. Although they teach you all the basic rules and moves of it, in practice all the duels never last for more than a few minutes and all you see is frozen images of people with speed lines to indicate what happened. Compared to the emperor of thrills, Kaiji was a super awesome show about a guy playing rock-paper-scissors. It felt a million times more exciting that people duelling with swords (even wooden ones). As for the slice of life part, it is still quite basic for the time the anime was made. Every episode doesn’t have more than a couple of funny/interesting moments when there already are similar shows with a dozen things to pay notice to in the same amount of time. So again, the flow of the story is quite slow and basic, becoming boring at times. As for the whole kendo championship, it couldn’t be shown any less exciting. They win or lose and you feel like nothing matters.
What further ruins it are the completely average production values. The characters and the sceneries are rather simplistic and with basic colouring, while actual animation is very rare. You mostly stare at frozen caricatures with flapping mouths, and even the duels are crummy motions based on speed lines, zooming and panelling. Voice acting and music themes are nothing memorable either. This becomes even bigger of a problem if one has already watched other school comedies with higher production values such as K-On or Suzumiya Haruhi.
Yet another problem are the unimpressive characters, who just like the humour and the production values are also average. You get this team of kendo chicks, their teacher and various friends, and nobody seems to be memorable for any given reason. That short fat guy is definitely standing out for being drawn completely different and for having a super hot girlfriend but is otherwise not memorable. As for the main team, only the airhead blond is given actual focus for watching most of the anime through her, and that other Super Sentai fan for being very dynamic and rather dramatic. All the rest are stock material and completely forgettable.
A thing which keeps you interested a bit more is the various references it makes to other anime. Being a parody of sorts, it uses them as both means to make a joke, as well as motivating the viewer to watch further (two early examples are Initial D and Super Sentai ). As funny as those extras were, they weren’t that many or that often after awhile, so compared to other major parody shows such as Gintama, this anime again fails to leave a lasting moment.
In all, I didn’t enjoy it much and I doubt it will be remembered in a few years. Anime are great when they are extreme and this one played out too safe and basic to even have a shot at glory.
And now for some excused scorings.
ART SECTION: 5/10
Analysis: General Artwork 1/2, Character Figures 1/2, Backgrounds 1/2, Animation 1/2, Visual Effects 1/2
SOUND SECTION: 6/10
Analysis: Voice Acting 2/3, Music Themes 2/4, Sound Effects 2/3
STORY SECTION: 5/10
Analysis: Premise 1/2, Pacing 1/2, Complexity 1/2, Plausibility 1/2, Conclusion 1/2
CHARACTER SECTION: 5/10
Analysis: Presence 1/2, Personality 1/2, Backdrop 1/2, Development 1/2, Catharsis 1/2
VALUE SECTION: 1/10
Analysis: Historical Value 0/3, Rewatchability 0/3, Memorability 1/4
ENJOYMENT SECTION: 2/10
VERDICT: 4/10 read more
Apr 18, 2009
Yes, it is. Bamboo blade manages to do that, and with flag flapping out high. Fights really are short, as in kendo, and not something like a episode-per-battle things that you see in many different animes (or, in DBZ format, battles take 10 episodes...) Main caharcters are also human-like, they all have even the bad sides and can feel negative emotions about things. None of the characters are really weak for the show, and everyone's thoughts and life is shown somehow. None of the characters are left out. With this many characters (6), it's quite an achievement.
Series also shows the hard part of the kendo: training, training and more training. Basic training can sometimes feel really like hell (for me, it felt useless at start), but then you start to get the hang of it and it becomes something you enjoy. This is also greatly shown up in the series. Also, there are some who kinda bend the rules (even one of the main characters), but mostly series show the idea of Kendokan.
The series still leaves some small things a bit open-out answered, but that can be passed as the fact that main characters have no way of finding them out. Also, comedy works well, as mentionet early. Mostly character's faces do the jokes, and it really works. Series also sometimes make it seem like they want to joke about how the characters think about something and somebody knows what they think. In Bamboo blade, characters often answer into questions other people say to themselves in their head. It's kind of refreshing since usually I get irritaded for the fact that everybody knows what others are thinking in the anime without telling it.
For overall, I have just one thing to say: Kendo is way of caring, not way of hurting. And Bamboo blade shows it. read more
Jul 15, 2008
Set in a high school kendo club, it is mostly a school sports comedy that contains well known plot elements such as personal growth, changing yourself, achieving set goals, finding a purpose and keeping your spirit strong to overcome challenges.
The characters are not incredibly original but most are presented well enough. Throughout the main cast you have more typical characters such as Ishida the sloppy kendo teacher that lacks goals and motivation, Tamaki the quiet and reserved girl that is a kendo prodigy, Yuuji the considerate and nice childhood friend, Saya the wild and outgoing girl, Azuma the shy bespectacled bookworm, etc...
But some characters do offer some surprise since their true nature is a juxtaposition of their overall image, Miyako, who first seems to be the polite beauty turns out to have a dark and aggressive streak, Azuma, who despite her bookworm looks and ways isn't a good student at all, Kirino, the seemingly air-headed and fun loving team captain is in fact always dependable, she is the very glue that holds the kendo club together. I'm not sure if that's true as well of Tamaki, she's portrayed as also being a bit of an otaku, she is a huge fan of “Blade Braver” (a fictional series that appears in this fictional series...) and even manages to have a small role in a “Blade Braver” movie, at which time she also meets Rin, who turns out to be a nemesis and a friend at the same time.
So despite characters that are not really original, none come off poorly, and throughout the series, the way they interact with each other in their kendo club, how they grow and change actually works out quite nicely and makes for one of the series' strongest points.
As the main character, Tamaki's story is played out most, supported by the rest of the cast and her interaction with the others, she ends up carrying the series well. Despite her past, one doesn't really feel sorry for her or overly admires her tremendous kendo skills, but you still inevitably start rooting for her. Her plot evolution and character growth was also paced well, from the few revelations, challenges, setbacks, victories and people she meets and befriends. The other kendo club members also each go through changes and evolution, some more than others.
The bonds of friendship between the different kendo club members was nice to see. Especially Kirino and Saya's bond seemed quite strong, with some vague hints that there may be a bit more than meets the eye, especially on Saya's part. Or so it seems from one scene near the end, but that may just be wishful thinking.
I was let down by the final episodes though. Several plot arcs are built up towards the final episodes, involving most major characters so one would expect quite a climactic ending, but most plots are concluded rather rapidly in barely a few scenes in the second to last episode, leaving the last episode to be one long epilogue of which the final scenes seem to hint at or provide the opportunity for another season to follow.
Animation throughout the series is good but not exceptional, the main female cast are all drawn very cutesy, plus they are well recognizable and different, from their physique, facial expressions, to hair style and colour. Which is a great plus as quite often you'll see them in full kendo gear, so it could have gotten quite tricky to recognize them. The style used for the character's eyes isn't one seen all too often too.
The overall soundtrack is not exceptional, it is just all right. I wasn't too fond of the opening or ending tracks though, not that they were bad, they felt like standard fare and the opening didn't especially make me feel excited about the coming episode.
In conclusion, while this series doesn't contain any extraordinary element, the overall sum somehow proves to be more than its individual parts and will no doubt be an enjoying series to watch for all.
Apr 10, 2008
Art: The animation was not anything special and was pretty much like most other anime. The drawing style and colors won me over.
Sound: Soundtrack was good. Voices were good. Opening and ending themes were good. I'm not complaining.
Character: I liked the characters, well most of them. Tamaki was just super cute, she was the reason I began watching this show. Kirino was an awesome character too. When she'd get sad, you knew something was seriously at miss. I seriously wanted to kill Dan-kun, but I believe that was the original purpose of this character anyway. That american chick messing with Miya-miya seriously also annoyed me.
Enjoyment: I enjoyed this show. Full of comedy and an occasional touch of epic. Girls screaming men, do and kote was kinda awesome. They also managed to put some good drama here and there.
Overall: Very shonen. Surely anyone into sports or school anime will get something out of this show. read more
Oct 18, 2011
Tamaki is the strong, silent type (and an otaku), Kirino is lovable and carefree, Miyako has a dark side, Sayako becomes distracted with other hobbies, and Satori is a klutz. There's Toraji the instructor, but he's a rather shallow character solely meant for comic relief, and the other two prominent male characters in the dojo only have supporting roles. Needless to say, everything takes a back seat to the girls.
The only exception to that last statement is kendo, which is pretty broadly covered. Not that you'll become an expert by the time you're done watching, but you'll understand the basics of the sport - from techniques to tournaments.
This cartoon seems more or less directed towards adolescent girls, but anybody who's easygoing or has an interest in kendo can enjoy it. It's not exactly something spectacular and teaches not much more than the basics of kendo and friendship, but it's a fun and light-hearted show that will appeal to anyone - even those who are experiencing anime for the first time. read more
Apr 3, 2011
Anime based on the manga, where as girls make up the majority of a school's kendo team. A school kendo teacher starts up a team in his efforts to win a bet against his rival's school team in a kendo match competition. His reward, free meals for a year. As far as the story goes, I have to say it is pretty straight forward, but much obliged as it is still fun watch. As far as character development goes from you expect from a sports anime, the characters progressively improve. You got your typical shy but BADASS girl, Tamaki, voiced by Hirohashi, Ryou [Alice - Aria, Kyou - Clannad] . Kirino, voiced by Toyoguchi, Megumi [Revy - Black Lagoon, Nishino - Ichigo 100%] the lovely ditzy, blonde bishoujo Kendo Captain. And other characters such as your tsundere and megane characters. I hope you enjoy this school sports comedy as much I did. I give it, 8 shinai (kendo swords) out of 10! XD read more
Mar 24, 2010
NK: Hm? Oh, hey Avon. Just practicing my kendo swing. I just finished watching Bamboo Blade
Av: Oh...right. How was it?
NK: Fantastic. Though it was informative, kinda like Hikaru no Go, it was really enjoyable because of the characters.
Av: Take it that's what you liked best, then.
NK: Yeah. The plot was pretty good, and the music was good too. The characters really define the series, though.
Av: From the looks of it, it's all female.
NK: Nope. Though the series is focused on the girls' kendo team, male characters are present and are actually pretty important to the series.
Av: How so?
NK: Well, the main kendo instructors are all male. Then there're the two seniors who play as antagonists in a couple ways. Plus, the two freshmen boys who join the club actually have a bit of character development themselves, and one of them acts as both a supporting character and a protagonist.
Av: I take it one of the females is your favorite, though.
NK: Yeah. For a while, Tama-chan was my favorite character: the hero for justice and all that. In retrospect, though, I've chosen Kirino. She's described in the series as being "the pillar of the kendo club", and she could probably be described as the pillar of the series, too. A lot of the humor involves her, and a good amount of the suspense is placed on her shoulders as well. It's difficult to find a character like that that still has a great supporting cast.
Av: Why don't you give a dissertation next time?
NK: Sorry, I just haven't found a character like that in a long time...
Av: Anyway, think I should take a look at it?
NK: Definitely. Granted, there are some cutesy parts...
Av: I'll be sure to have a bucket handy.
NK: It's not that bad. Just girls being girls, like any slice-of-life anime out there. If you're interested in kendo, Bamboo Blade is a great starting point. I think you'd like it because you like traditional japanese swordplay. Kendo was used as training in the feudal age, if I recall correctly.
Av: Right. Well, I'll let you get back to...whatever it was you were-
NK: Aw, curses...that was the light bulb, wasn't it?
Av: Yup. Good thing that bat's plastic, huh? read more
Mar 21, 2010
All of the enjoyment of the show comes from the characters and the fights. Although that might make it sound like a shonen series, it certainly is not, but it dances on that line between shonen and seinen very well. Ostensibly about a kendo instructor and his struggles with a high school club, it's really about a young kendo prodigy named Tamaki who matures into a young woman through the course of the series.
The series is short on plot, and since this was my first real sports anime I'm not really used to that . They basically go from one tournament to another, with lots of training in between and little drama. It didn't have much to draw from, since the manga is also weak in this respect.
The art and sound are passable, the fight scenes are well done, but some reuse of material towards the end becomes conspicuous. I'm not crazy about the opening or ending, and I really don't like Tama's voice, which sounds way too young even for that character.
The characters obviously make the show, and all the girls are distinct and likable. It does a very good job of developing each personality, and is very patient introducing them.There's even a happy couple in the mix, which seems rather rare in anime these days.
Overall, a light anime with cute characters, it should leave you feeling happy after each viewing.
Favorite Character: Dan the Man
Crushing on: Saya
Favorite Episode: 22
Favorite Song: Track #19 Yugure read more