English: ef - a tale of melodies
Synonyms: ef - a tale of memories second season, ef - a tale of memories 2nd season
Japanese: エフ ア テイル オブ メロディーズ
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Oct 7, 2008 to Dec 23, 2008
Duration: 24 min. per episode
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or olderL represents licensing company
Score: 8.351 (scored by 26020 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
2 based on the top anime page.
Popular Tagsdrama romance
Dec 26, 2008
Taking place after the first installment known as ef- a tale of memories, we now follow the tale of most of the supporting cast from the original I just mentioned. Going into this I was a bit bummed that they didn’t decide to simply go with a whole brand new cast for this, but it actually worked out quite well, as this time around we get to learn more about: Kuze, Mizuki, Yuuko and Yu. (which again were simply the supporting cast from the first ef series) And get a better understanding as to who they are, and also answer questions that were not answered from the original. You will be transported back and forth from the past to the present, as the overall plot can only be understood by doing so. Now watching this series you won’t really find anything particularly new here with the story, most of the events that take place are more along the lines of what you would see in a Soap Opera---in other words, lots and LOTS of drama here. Basically each of the four cast members will (or eventually) fall for one another, each having to face their own personal demons (just a medifore) in the process. Most of them are not quite what they appear to be at first, and as the story progress you get a much more in depth look as to who they are. The way it is told though, is what really makes "ef- a tale of melodies" stand out. You don’t just simply watch the story and love scenes progress like you would a regular anime. This one is told in a more artistic tone. For example: when the characters are in deep thought from a certain situation, you may see them in a room by themselves--or even see them all chained up as a black silhouette, (this of course represents that the certain character is a prisoner either to themselves, or by another) and a lot of it takes place in the character’s mind and not in the physical form. So you can’t go into this series expecting a "what you see is what you get" idea, because this series doesn’t do it that way. Setting the artistic themes aside for a moment, the situations themselves are pretty standard for a drama, which may turn off some people and give the feeling to them that the whole "medifore" idea is simply there to only cover up a more standard fared story. Which quite honestly isn’t too far from the truth, as many scenes tended to last quite long, and sometimes seemed to give a more slower pace to the storyline. Still, what it lacks in actual new material with its story, it makes up for by the artistic way it shows it. It also has a worth while ending too!
The art of this series is so rich and detailed, I would expect nothing less from the "ef" series, in fact just watching the opening scene with the paper airplane gliding along the sunset sky, is truly appealing for the eyes, as is the entire series. The character design (while nothing particularly new) is well distinct. I especially liked the eyes of the characters. The water effects that come from the ocean will seem to just glide across your screen so fluently. And the character animation and backgrounds are truly superb!
I have to say that the sound was the weakest link for me in the anime, the opening and closing were indeed well planned out tracks (both ranging from soft and sincere, to catchy "finger snapping" tunes, " one even sung in English no less) The background music was a bit lack luster though, while you do get nice and appropriate orchestral music that plays in the back during events, nothing ever really stands out too much, with the exception of Kuze’s violin piece. The voice cast was a bit of a "hit and miss" for me too. Most of the deep males voices were nice at complimenting the artistic theme of the anime. But most of the female cast I found to be a bit on the standard side, with the exception of a girl name Yuuko, her’s was well fitting the part. Overall it was a great soundtrack, but it just didn't seem to be quite as good as the original's.
I really liked each and everyone of the characters, nobody ever came off as annoying, or would make you feel that they tossed one in just for the sake of doing so. I was especially captivated with the character "Kuze, " he is a musician with a quite interesting past, and the turmoil he goes through is quite sad--yet exciting at times. The character chemistry was a bit rushed for one of the couples, but seemed to be pulled off appropriately at the end. Since half of this title is all about back story, you get a pretty in depth look into the character’s lives and can really connect with just who they are, and will feel what they feel!
ef - a tale of melodies is a truly satisfying experience if you can appreciate it’s approach in things. It's debatable as to whether this one surpassed the original or not. It can at least be said however, that this is truly an outstanding sequel! If you prefer a simple and casual romance themed anime then it would probably be best to avoid this one. As many of its extended medifore scenes may tend to drag out and frustrate some viewers. But if you’re an anime fan with a taste for the arts, or perhaps looking for a new way of viewing a romance title, then this series is for you. ef - a tale of melodies is not spectacular in what it shows...but how it shows it!
Side Note: If you are interested in watching this title, I would recommend watching the prequel first. As some of the original main characters from the first make an appearance here, and the whole overall story can only be understood fully from both sides. read more
Dec 26, 2008
Note: If you have not see the Tale of Memories, do not read this review. It'll be rather meaningless.
Make no mistake, Tale of Melodies is definitely not a mediocre sequel. Judged by itself, Melodies would fit the true hallmarks of a classic. Watching episode after episode is akin to surfing upon waves of pure emotion, there will be scenes that are guaranteed to even make terminator a little teary.
Like its original, Melodies is an utter masterpiece of both visual and melodic artistic direction. The visuals accentuate the emotions in every scene, the speech often feature rhythmic and even poetic undertone; when you watch Melodies, you do not feel like you're just watching an anime, but rather appreciating an awe-inspiring piece of art.
Where's most anime are content to have the animations fluidly and attractively portray an event, Melodies goes five steps further. Each and everything scene, including even the placement and subtle variations of the OP, are the way the way for some subtle purpose. There's little else to be said but to experience it. If Clannad for a 10/10 for art, Melodies surely deserves an 11.
In terms of technical and artistic talent, Melodies arguably surpasses its original. Yuuko's suffering in Episode 6 for example, ups the ante even in comparison to the famous phone messages of Miyako in season 1. So what keeps Melodies from rivaling memories?
It's certainly not the art or the music, nor is it likely the characters. The dialogue and characters remain strong, with a subtle since a humour that'll be familiar to anyone who enjoyed memories. The story, at outset, looks to have at least equal potential. On the one side, you have Mizuki, whose must find a way to bestow her love (Kuze) with the will to live and fight against a terminal disease. On the other, you have Yuu, who must save Yuuko from a history of abuse.
Yet, in watching the entire series, one can't help but feel something's missing. In the final episodes, there was just not quite the rush of anxiety one experienced when Chihiro tore out the pages of her diary. Perhaps some of the sudden twists in Melodies was too sudden and lacked the anxious suspense the original; perhaps it was the lack of something to rival the powerful metaphor delivered by the tale of the only girl in the world. The episodes of Melodies, while individually excellent, didn't appear to quite to weave together as flawlessly as the original.
Or perhaps it is just inspiration, or soul.
Just as Leonardo developed better skills after painting the Mona Lisa, SHAFT's technical capacity only improved after memories. Yet Melodies just has that little bit missing...
It's not quite the masterpiece memories was, but remains a brilliant piece of art. read more
Jul 1, 2011
The anime is based on an adult visual novel, called Ef - A Fairy Tale of the Two, with original female character design by Nanao Naru, who also did the manga version. The mystery of Himura Yuu and Amamiya Yuuko finally unravels here. Firstly, let me give you a proper synopsis.
As narrated by the protagonist, Himura, there are two cities called Otowa, one that is built on the burnt rubble of its former self, and another that is a fake mirror of it. Yuu and Shuuichi are talking while the latter is burning his letters, ending his relationships, including one by Nagi, which, though rare of her, he does not read. In the past, a high school boy was walking down the street, when he noticed a girl on a roof. He went to her, and the two talked. It seemed as if she, Amamiya Yuuko, knew who he, Himura Yuu, was, yet, he did not recognize her. She proceeded by saying that she still hated Yuu. At school, Himura saw the words "Art room - Hirono" on his desk, and exclaimed "ano baka (that idiot)." On his way there, to his surprise, he met with his friend, Kuze, who was having a flea market before going abroad. After Shuuichi learned where Yuu was going, he wished him a safe trip (as if he were leaving to a dangerous place). Near the art room, Himura also met with Amamiya Akira-sensei, who thought that Yuu was at last joining the art club, like Amamiya had always wanted him to, but Himura quickly and bluntly dismisses the idea. Holding an unlighted cigarette, Amamiya said that it is horrible how people are always drawn to art, whether it is voluntary or by being dragged thanks to those who are, advising Himura to simply join. After reaching the room, Yuu witnessed Hirono Nagi there, drawing a nude self-portrait with no clothes on. He immediately told her to wear her uniform, thinking that what Amamiya had said might really be true, then she forced him to go shopping with her, much to his dismay. Going home, they noticed a girl, Amamiya Yuuko, following them. A conversation ensued between the three, and ended up with Hirono throwing a sketch book she wanted to give as a present on Himura. Yuu and Yuuko went to the beach, where the former eventually said he remembered the latter. At the present, Hayama Mizuki, who is about to enter college by recommendation, is staying with her cousin, Asou Renji, a former protagonist. After waking up from another bad dream, she realizes that famous violinist, Kuze Shuuichi, is living next door, and insists on meeting him to hear him play nama (live or bare; there is a small joke on that here and a big one in B Gata H Kei). Renji suspiciously tries to prevent her from doing so, but he has no choice, since, unlike Mizuki, he has to study for college examinations. She finally meets Shuuichi, who immediately reminds her of Tsutsumi Kyousuku, another previous protagonist and her senpai, Shindou Kei's boyfriend; a womanizer. He agrees to play with her. However, Mizuki notices strange things at Shuuichi's place, but for which he always comes up with an excuse. First of all, his living room contains very little furniture, making Hayama think Kuze is about to move, but he says he just likes big spaces. Second of all, she tells him she wants to hear him play the violin, but he replies he cannot, and after being inquired as to why, he says it is broken. Third of all, a clock alarm rings in the afternoon, and Shuuichi exclaims that it is for his stomach (to eat). Mizuki only finds drinks in the refrigerator, but he informs her he has ice as well. Kuze speaks in a formal manner, which Hayama picks up on, but he explains that he has to talk this way, as he meets a lot of people, likening it to wearing masks, which he has hung up on the wall. Mizuki lightly says that cat masks are kawaii (cute), and asks Shuuichi to lie on the ground with her, just relaxing and enjoying the lack of shoujo manga, which she loves, that takes up space in her room. Later, however, when Hayama leaves, Kuze, alone in a dark room, feels a severe chest pain, and is forced to sit on his couch, saying, "not yet . . ."
A good mystery is answered with more mysteries, as this season does. One of the few down points this series has is a supernatural element that is revealed at the end. Those who finish it will understand. I still like the morals that are taught, though.
The best way to continue a series is by showing past events, linking them to current ones, which Ef - A Tale of Melodies brilliantly and intricately executes, despite the aforementioned extraordinary happening. Showing the main characters as young kids is informative and gives depth to them. Seeing the lead, Himura Yuu being more carefree and displaying funny facial expressions is refreshing from his current more depressing, somber self. The same thing can be said of the heroine, Amamiya Yuuko, who is now a serious, wise girl, where she was outgoing and always smiling, hiding her true feelings. Hirono Hiro, the prequel's protagonist's oneechan (older sister) surprisingly plays a major role now, where she was just mentioned as part of his pseudonym, Shindou Nagi. Their love triangle is similar to Hirono Hiro, Miyamura Miyako, and Shindou Kei's, where two of them have a friendly relationship, and a girl appears, changing things. Another surprise is that two people have met before any of them could remember, but it happens later, in episode ten, the best and saddest one, although it is in black and white.
The opening sequence is also played in black and white. Similar to the previous season, the song, portraying the main characters, is in English, except for the final episode, twelve, where it is played in Japanese, which is better, with the same catchy tune. In one episode, the piece is instrumental (referring to the title, I believe) (showing no characters), and, at one time, the ending sequence is a slowed-down version of the opening sequence without the melody; both of which never took place in the prequel. Again, however, like the first season, the ending sequences vary, with some of them dedicated to the heroines. The soundtrack and seiyuu in general are amazing.
One of the other reviewers said that he wanted a different cast for this season. What is that about? The entire series revolves around Himura Yuu and Amamiya Yuuko; it would not be right to leave their story hanging, though I would not mind if there were an unrelated (or related) third season, because I could not find another series even close to this one in terms of epicness, but that is highly unlikely, since it is based on a game that has already finished, as mentioned in the Latter Tale's trailer.
I could talk on and on about how wonderful this show is, but you will have to see it for yourself. This is romance, drama, and tragedy at their best. The artwork is beautiful and the story is spectacular. I guarantee you will love this anime. It is my all-time favorite one (along with Ef - A Tale of Memories).
"You will never see Amamiya Yuuko again." - Kuze Shuuichi read more
Jul 4, 2009
Short subjective evaluation and interpretation of "Ef - A Tale of Melodies"
As the recipient, you find yourself in a complex story building made of a huge network of relationships in which every single detail is elaborated in a way of perfection I've only seen in Clannad - that is "Ef - A Tale of Melodies". The story revolves around two main protagonists, Kuze and Yuu, who already appeared in the prequel "Ef - A Tale of Memories" and set the fundament to the really great experience of the second season.
The story is not far away from being a masterpiece in my opinion. It was a lot times better than the story of the prequel "Ef - A Tale of Memories" due to the mysteric way of presenting real circumstances in everyday's life. A person who is condemned to die early and his desperate struggle to find a 'conclusion' for his life in order to experience a kind of fulfillment; and another person who has to reflect on his actions he made out of desperation and fear, which finally led to something even worse.. that is the kind of story I would definitely call a true drama. From the beginning up until the end there's no time to release one's mind. Just like in the prequel the recipient get bombed with extremely well reasoned dialogues, creating a thick and heavy atmosphere and encourage the viewer to reflect on the behavior and actions of the protagonists.
The ending was pretty good as well, but it might have been a bit more realistic if it turned out sadder. I don't want to spoil at this point.
The only thing that prevents me from giving 10 points to the story is just about the dialogues (especially those about the love scenes), which at some parts should have been less intense in my opinion (for instance the part with Mizuki on the roof answering Kuze's questions).
This anime is indeed a really great work of art. With some simple means it creates a terrific atmosphere which is absolutely necessary for this kind of story. The drawing is well-done, the animation authentic (especially the wind flowing through the hair and partially the movements), and the character design also really good. But the fact that makes this anime to something very special regarding the arts is the style of blending the images, using many different colors and shapes, implementing words and sentences from romanian languages and telling a parallel story besides the animation's story by using just these technical means. At this point it's pretty sad that some of those screens fade too fast so that the viewer has to pause the video in order to read what's written on the screen (and especially to think about the relation to the story).
As it can be assumed when looking at the title, in "Ef - A Tale of Melodies" the sound/music plays a very important role. In my subjective interpretation, those "Melodies" are first based only on music, later the whole story building (including the end) gives this "Tale of Melodies" a new meaning, some kind of "life melody" with images as well as music. But this doesn't concern at this point.
The melancholic music of this anime, primarily composed by Tenmon is perfectly fitting into the story and underlines the atmosphere created by the plot. The fact that Kuze is musician and plays his violine makes me feel of the music as a firmly integrated part within the story - and that makes it even more fitting.
The opening is not one of my favorites, but that's not important at all. The ending music changes from episode to episode making the anime appear more dynamic. Something I've rarely seen before.
Well, what do I have to say? The protagonists both totally convinced me in their train of thought, in their actions and behavior - you can mean that the author himself experienced these cruel situations - and especially in their appearance. Kuze and Yuu are two very different human beings, both struggeling.. Yuu with his dreadful past, Kuze with his fearsome future. Both try to find a way out of desperation, but they have to learn that it's not possible to solve one's problems that easily. While Kuze slowly abandons everything around him, Yuu seems absent from the world itself unless he meets Yuuko. Remember, those two storylines take place in different times - Yuu's story in the past, Kuze's story in the present of the prequel "Ef - A Tale of Memories".
The development of those two characters influenced by feelings from other people and its outcome of finding strength and courage is the thing that makes me consider this anime as something 'real'.
"Miracles don't exist in this world. There are only coincidences, inevitabilities, and actions that people take. I'll just have to make this miracle into an inevitability."
Well, it's not something new at all, but it's just perfectly shown in this anime.
The side characters also play a very good role and round the whole thing up.
I enjoyed this series from the very beginning to the end. There's no boring dialogue, some funny scenes, a lot of tearful scenes, fitting music, authentic characters, an original style, romance, slice of life, changing timelines and plots.. the composition of those things absolutely fulfilled my requirements of enjoying an anime, contrary to the prequel "Ef - A Tale of Memories" which was too far away from reality and was kind of boring at the beginning (due to the fact that the viewer feels lost in such a dark atmosphere with no characters to stick to). I know, most people prefer the first part, but when it comes to my view of things, I prefer those animes which contain more valuable information about the real life, like for instance "how does someone behave if he knew he would die soon". Well, it's a subjective thing..
..due to the epicness I longed for a certain time now. The package of all those aspects make this anime an incredible experience. Its fancy style of presenting the story is the most interesting I've seen so far. The feelings don't reach those I had when I saw Clannad but the atmosphere in "Ef - A Tale of Melodies" compensates for this. Truly an amazing work.
Btw. if you have any recommendations regarding my English I would gladly appreciate your help, just write me a message with my mistakes or something XD read more
Feb 8, 2012
Future? A unknown phenomenon that occurs after the present moment. You’ll never know what might be in store for you so the only thing you must do is gather your courage and determination and march forward!!
If you have watch the prequel of this story then you will not be disappointed however have you ever wonder who was the girl with the blue hair was. She always appears when the main characters are in a slump, troubled on what to do next. Exactly who and what is she? a deity? a ghost? She appears and then disappears without a trace. Also who was Himura, he seemed to know a lot of the answers regarding life but is it from personal experience? He was waiting for someone and in the end the first series, he was waiting for Yuko, the girl with blue hair but who is she and what exactly is their relationship? Well you are about to find out in this sequel to E.F: A Tales of Melodies!! If you like the first series with the crazy philosophical sense in the artwork and in the setting then you w]on’t be let down. This time it isn’t just full of drama.. it has action too.
This time this story is focus on the characters that were giving guidance (Himura, Yuko and Kuze) to the protagonists of the first series. We get to look into the proof behind those words that help the young protagonist out, starting with the view the relationship that Himura had while he was in high school. After all Himura is the protagonist of the story and present Kuze. That’s right instead of 3 male lead, its 2!
This series rather than focusing on the emotional dilemmas and love ties like “A tales of Memories” this series does indeed has those trait incorporated but it takes them to a whole another level. This one incorporates the themes from the prequel plus the addition of torture and suffering of losing someone. The only difference is whether one wants to enjoy ever last moment they have or try to forget them before they get to deep. The protagonist is rather considerate to others yet very cruel to himself. He would rather suffer and die alone without bothering anyone or hurting anyone too deeply. In one view point he is very courageous but in another viewpoint he is very conceited. Though it is a really painful decision to make and not anyone could have this determination to break all ties.
The other protagonist however is face with a more traumatizing dilemma. Everyone has a scar that can never heal after losing a loved one in an accident, but everyone has their own way of recovering over it. In Himura’s scenario, it’s rather intense. He encounters his childhood friend who got adopted before him and learned something horrifying about her. Nobody could be more prepared to suddenly lose a loved one. No can cope with the facts right away. Wounds take time to heal especially the one in the heart, but this scenario is insane. “When one thinks of another’s feeling and blame oneself, it actually makes the other suffer more. But when the one inflicting the pain is the one who felt the most pain. When one loses a loved one, one could recover by the comfort and support from family or friend but what if that family or friend is the one you lost and there’s no one else who could help you? This person found a replacement for their loved one. Instead of showering them with emotion of the one they lost, they inflict pain on the innocent. However there is a twist!!...
As the plot deepens, the story gets more realistic in the way where we could somewhat apply in our own lives. This story shows us a grander psychological angle. However the similarity between both characters is that they are both running away from reality. They seem to be thinking they are doing the right thing but that is only for self-satisfaction. They are insecure and thinking it’s the right thing to do. However they are scared to face the truth!
As always the artwork is fantastic as well, the symbols of the scenery really capture the mood and setting. Plus the variety of colors really describe the mood of the characters and sort of sending out a subliminal message on how the viewers should feel. The characters are drawn in the same way as the first series, and the character get drawn in a different frame all locked up to inscribe to us how they are feeling inside. Showing us this abstract scene really get oneself engross on the character. This part I don’t despise but sometime I feel frighten on how the story unravel. However that is this anime’s hook!
This anime is truly a beautiful piece of work. It is magnificent, how the story is laid out the way it is. I especially like how it has more than one male lead in these romance stories because that way the story does end and not leave the viewer hanging and also for other people to not loathe the author for not matching up the character with the one they chose.
Honestly to sum up this series, I’ll end with a quote!
This is a story of “Will.” “People who walk toward the future will eventually reach the place that they once dreamt of. Toward the tomorrow that gleam of light”
I highly recommend this anime to those fanatics out there who really loves a good romantic, sad and tragic anime. You will really enjoy this and will be engross with it. Hope you enjoy it as much as I have.
Can you hear it? The Melody of Truth
Fun Fact that I notice:
The pen name that from the first series that Hirono Hiro used was “Shinto Nagi”
“Shinto” last name from Shinto Kei
“Nagi” First name from his sister Hirono Nagi
Nov 6, 2011
Himura Yuu is a silent force in the city of Otowa, Australia.
They have both been introduced in the first season of ef as characters who have made it their duty to make their world a better place, and this is their story of growing up.
Since they were both abandoned children, their lives were already as bad as it gets. But they managed to get even worse.
This story tells us of unbearable pain that scares you for life and the way to deal with it.
After the earthquake that took place in Otowa, Japan, there was an identical city built in Australia as a memorandum.
Both the cities and the people residing in them are like two halfs of a whole.
In Japan, we have Amamiya and Kei.
In Australia, Himura and Kei's twin sister Chihiro.
This is a very important aspect of the story because of its metaphorical meaning. Kei and Chihiro, separated after Chihiro got hit by a car, spent 5 years apart. With Kei's determination to visit her, the two halves became a whole.
The second, parallel story is set in present day and revolvs around Kei's highschool friend Mizuki.
She went to Australia to visit her cousin Renji over the holidays, but ended up falling in love with a man terminally ill.
Her 'theme' is strenght and will. But on a whole new level. Regardless of her past, of her present and her future, she manages to push on towards her dream without loosing faith.
In the end, both stories interwind and the two Otowa's (metaphorically speaking) become one.
A set of broken people start gathering the pieces of themselves and manage to either stop
looking back or finally make peace with their past.
The impact this story leaves on the viewer is tremendous.
First of all this is a series that gets you very emotionally involved: Before you even realise, you're crying, you're laughing, you're frustrated, you're angry and so on and on and on. There are very few anime that manage to make the viewer believe the emotion shown on screen and experience it for themselves. I would credit this to the amazing characterisation. Throughout both the first and this season, the characters have proven that no matter how hard life is on you, no matter how much you loose, no matter how impossible your dream is, there is always a way to make things right: ''The first step to make your dream come true is by clinging onto it and never letting go''.
Also, it's almost impossible not to identify with at least one of the characters. Each and every one of them has experienced tremendous pain, but managed to come out as a winner.
It's an ending all of us desire, isn't it?
The second, maybe even more important aspect of all ef – related works is the art:
The colours simply pop out of the screen, the emotions are depicted in a way that would ashame even Hayao Miyazaki, the intermissions between scenes are unique and imaginative, everything is simply eye candy.
This, in combination with the characterisation, makes ef – a tale of melodies an unique work of art. It's not somethig you'll watch while ironing your shirt or writing an English essay. It just captivates all of your antention and makes you so absorbed you forget the world around
Although ef – a tale of melodies has a lot going for it, some of it's aspects are still just a bad copy of the first season.
In the first season the focus was mainly on the love triangle including Kei, Miyako and Hiro, but it managed (although based on a soap opera like theme) to keep the pathetic tone of the story down, thus creating an unique love story.
Ef – a tale of melodies, tries to do the same with Kuze's and Mizuki's relationship, but fails at reducing patheticity and thus makes the story less realistic and believable.
The second thing they copied is the music. For me, that was the worst aspect of the series. In ef – memories the OP was sung in English, and although the English was (very very very very) bad, the beat of the song as well as the lyrics suited the story very well.
The OP of ef – melodies has a beat that's almost the same as in the above mentioned with a few deviations that really don't sound well.
Furthermore, the lyrics of both OP's ED's (with the exception of ''A moon filled sky'') are just words thrown without any meaning whatsoever.
‘’I wonder why my tears come at night
Calling you, so like a little child
All the things you have in mind
I wish I could see your insides’’
What the…? What does that even mean? I think you realize what I’m trying to say.
The only recuperating side to the music in this anime is Kuze’s violin songs. Each and every one of them are a pleasure to hear.
This is an anime I would recommend to absolutely anyone and everyone. It has all the qualities necessary to, if not anything else, make an interesting watch.
Jan 5, 2009
I don’t remember exactly in which movie did I hear this phrase, but it has haunted me ever since the first time I heard it. It contains in itself an irrevocable truth about human mind, that tastes are not "universal", but rather contained in each individual.
Thus some people would manage to enjoy stuff like Rosario to Vampire and Miley Sirius music, while others might rather puke at mere mention of them.
Where does the difference lie? In the intelligence of the one who enjoys it, perhaps? I doubt it. If such were the case, it would be reason, not emotions, the one that would makes the difference, and its a well know empirical fact that don’t "think" you like something, you just "know". (It is more probable that intelligent people might be reluctant to be lumped up with "the stupid" and avoid everything that’s "main stream" like not long ago the aristocracy rejected that which was done by those not belonging to noble class. )
I think the difference falls into the capability of the subject to relate it self with the art. Once it become something similar, akin to experience, one can truly understand its meaning and able to get its true message. Think of this: love songs will often sound "shallow" and "stupid" until you fall in for the first time. Then, Oh! everything make sense. In fact , Too much sense
When one "gets" what they are talking about, then you can move on to the next phase. The art cannot only speak of what you have already experienced, but leave you with a new perspective of the situation. It might affect your way of thinking altogether and change you for good. That is right art, one that is not only a passive object, but one that becomes part of the observant and modifies him into something new.
With that in mind, I can say with out regrets that Ef- a tale of memories/melodies ( I must consider both, since they actualy belong to the same game) is not only a piece art, but "right art". It tackled to of my favourite topics (God and death) and managed to give me new perspective into those issues, and some little changes in my view of my life as a whole. (it may sound exaggerated and melodramatic, but think how many people had their life changed because of Evangelion. That one did screw up my entire generation, and almost every generation after that one. Compared to that this one is just a mere breeze )
With that in mind, I must lay down a warning. You might find it either a Masterpiece or no more than a cheap soap opera with around 15 minutes of talk and 10 minutes of Songs. It depends on your capacity to relate to the story, which in itself depends on the way you had lived your life so far. It will also depends in the reason you have to watch anime as a whole, or even in your emotional states as you go throught the episodes.
Then, I specially recommend trying it if had ever thought you are fucked up and hated God, if you had loss someone you loved, or if you like pretty drawings and shiny colourful scenes that have nothing to do with the story. If you are not one of those, I could still recommend it if you have nothing else to watch, if only so you can brag about it later and write condescending reviews to mocks those who didnt like it so they can see how cool you are. read more
Jan 17, 2010
Sadly, I could only dream about it.
The story is presented in the same pattern as Memories, at this point the viewer shouldn't be confused in the way it's made. While most of the cast are back, they actually switch roll in a sense that the main characters of the first season would become the support cast and vice versa. The most drastic change some can feel while watching Melodies is that is darker than the first season and perhaps darker than someone would Imagine. And here's the problem, both of the story arcs were dark and yet they both failed to have a sense of suspense. SHAFT was successful in creating a blend of suspense and romance in the first season(Notably the ending of the Hiro-Miyako) and thus the reason why A Tale of Memories was very good. One could think that A Tale of Melodies would be a parallel. Well, Shaft didn't succeed this time.While the stories had a premise start, As darker these story arcs were, they also felt more cliché, more unbelievable and sadly more boring as it was getting to its end.
I also have to point that ending didn't have the same expectation as the first season. While A Tale of Memories felt completed, the ending of a Tale of Melodies is left with the feeling that there's still something more to tell which can leave an unsatisfying feeling for the viewers.
Nothing can't really be said against the art except for some of the characters design that really felt bland or been done before. Truly amazing backgrounds and sunset. The SHAFT art, which consist of high contrast, simple colours, black and white and so on is also magnificent as it played a key role in the most important scenes.
A Tale of melodies did deliver a great cast, no doubt about that. Yet, the series still suffered from few characters who weren't developed enough and made them quite uninteresting(Notably Nagi, who even though she's a supporting character, still had an important role). Another problem that can be regarded is the quality of the dialogues. The series did have some good dialogues, yet a lot of them were predictable, silly and also cliché.
I have to admit, enjoying the series was quite hard. While I admit Melodies had beautiful moment and memorable SHAFT scenes, it still suffered from long scenes where all it did was turning around the block(Not getting to the point).
In overall, A Tale of Melodies could have been a great sequel there's no doubt about that. We hoped for something as good or better, but it isn't the case. Like I said, it had a premised start and the only element needed was a good execution. This element was never included.
Beside, most of the fans of first did like this one. I guess I wasn't in the majority. So go on, flame me. read more
Jun 30, 2009
As for the story, like any anime I watch I can't tell how much I'd like the story fully until the ending. Far too many times do animes with great stories ruin it with the end. The end here was a bit anticlimactic for my tastes, it wasn't completely screwed up to the point of ruining the series for me but it seemed a bit meh for all the tension it was building.
If you watched the first EF you will notice that the main charaters in this one are the side characters from the first season. I loved this part. Usually I hate when an anime dives off its main story line into side characters excessively, but this being a new season with a whole new story line and the original being completed I loved it. Really original, while the main characters from the first season appear here as side ones. Great concept.
This one threw in 2 different plot twists than memories, the first being the time aspect, one of the stories occurs during the past and if you've watched memories your pretty much know where it's going to go. But the way they alluded to this story line durring memories was so interesting to me. They teased you with it and never told you, until melodies.
The other is the distant thing. I was completely unaware during memories that the two stories were occurring on different continents. This part really didn't come across well at all. The characters switch around what country they are in at the drop of the hat, they made many mistakes as to who was in what country when (Listing them would all be spoilers) While I liked how they tied the characters together some of it just seemed forced and trying to draw the line between how this character knew this character from where- when the lines were crossing constantly and across continents just made my head hurt.
As for the characters themselves, much, much better than memories. I'm really impressed with how much of an improvment they made with this one. You grew to genuinlly care for these people for the most part, I hate when a writer wants to have two characters fall in love and instead of taking the time to build a logical relationship, showing the cause of the love between to characters they basically just shove them together for a day and when they come out declare their love for one another for no apparent reason. (Or not a believable one at least) While memories was riddled with this problem, melodies mearlly featured it. A little more build up in the love story would have been good, but this wasnt horrible.
Miki was the one character that just got under my skin. And as her earlier story line progressed, got really confusing. The earlier parts gave her depth, but I really wish they had expanded on that because as she is now she just seems like the typical ditzy anime girl.
As for the visuals in this one I didnt find them as dynamic as I did in the first. This one was all about good characters and good deep story lines. Memories to me relied way more on its looks. The english in both series's OP and end were a funny listen, though with the amount of drama contained within the episodes probably not the time you want to here something funny. I dont think anyone would find it romantic if I walked up to them and told them I wanted to see their insides. They should have just done them in Japanese, it would have come across much better and taken the cheese factor down a notch for me.
Overall this was a pretty good anime. Some minor flaws keeping it from perfection but after memories I am pleasantly surprised with this one. Defnitley worth the watch. read more
Dec 27, 2008
The characters are really well-made and have very deep connections with the ones in the first season.
The plot is even better than the first season; the beginning is a bit strange but it just keeps getting better and better.
The music is what i like the most. Every song was perfect in the moment they placed it, they're also really beautiful and fit the series perfectly.
The art is really something. Not only the abundance of opening versions they made, about 8, but also the landscapes and those romantic moments; the art it's been worked on a lot.
I really enjoyed this series to the4 point i cried in the last episode. If you like original romantic anime I strongly recommend this. It's not your typical romantic story, it's fantastic. read more
Jan 28, 2009
Art: Brilliant, the art style is the one thing I love about this show the most. The effects, style, lighting, and scenes are all fantastic. There isn't really anything to complain about. Each scene comes with their own perfect lighting and style. That helps you feel the mood around the characters, and their emotions.
Sound: Unforgettable, the music changes with each scene, and comes on during certain situation. The music also helps build up certain scenes, which will make your jaw drop. Though I can't really put more here, if you have a chance. Go look up the soundtrack, and listen for yourself.
Character: Lots of different character for you to love/hate. Each and everyone of them have their own unique traits, and personality. Though some of them aren't really original, most of them are quite unique in some ways. That will make you love them.
Overall Enjoyment: I enjoyed this show enough, that I had to rewatch certain episodes. And it just never cease to amaze me. Overall, this show deserves a 10 out of 10. read more
Jan 2, 2012
The second season of the ef series (tale of memories was the first season), a tale of melodies comes full circle. A tale of melodies is an awe-inspiring storyline that can be described as enigmatic, ephemeral, and turbulent, yet leaves an impression that (ironically) is vivid, lasting, and resolute. Little about tale of melodies is immediately straightforward, yet that is what makes the story possess the kind of depth that enables it to project multiple themes.
While the first season (a tale of memories) confounded many viewers with its strange representation and plot development, a tale of melodies thrilled using the same strategy. Much of it is attributed towards the familiarity of the intended audience to some of the characters and better continuity associated with brilliant storylines.
As a warning, I would not recommend watching a tale of melodies before a tale of memories although in my opinion a tale of memories is a much inferior work, as it is important to understand the characters, which a tale of memories did not do as well or project to such a high level of excellence.
Of the many facets that make a tale of memories amazing is the number of thematic layers it possesses with such an unpredictable plot. The depiction and manipulation of time and space within the anime was played to perfection by allowing viewers to see the anime from multiple perspectives (each with their own unique set of themes) that eventually merge into one. The anime is is devoid of 'filler' and each scene has a purpose.
One of the things I found to very impressive about a tale of melodies was that it was able to preserve the continuity and consistency with story and character despite the entropic pace and developments within the story. Everything that happens possesses a meaning, yet nothing is immediately obvious before it happened. Often the anime has abrupt shifts in themes, yet blend with masterful synergy. Nothing from the anime is what it initially seems, and that is one of the reasons it is so good. In a sense, the creators imposed a set of strong themes towards the viewer without giving anything away, which is rarely seen in animes with similar storylines.
Along with depth and uniqueness, the broad variety of characters with different personalities, behaviors, beliefs, and even morality added more color and detail to the already intriguing anime. The level of information gained within each character was amazing given the anime's short length (12 episodes) to develop each of them. Not only were the creators able to do that, but they also developed the characters to such a high level of synergy that each character was connected to the other characters within a large web that if broken would distort the entire anime. To develop an anime that can sustain such a brilliant plot and strong themes while navigating through such a fragile web is nothing short of masterful.
However, in the end what makes a tale of memories a masterpiece is its message. It pieces together many facets of life such as distress, egotism, nostalgia, love, sorrow, loss, and hope and knits it into a quilt that provides different messages based on the viewer. Although the message might vary from person to person, it is undeniably profound.
A tale of melodies is a work of art. It paints a medley of characters in a world that it cannot be detached to and leaves viewers amazed.
Feb 11, 2009
Art: It was really solid. Character design haven't changed, but the animation got better, and much more artistic eksperiments were used. There are some memorable scenes, but no suprises- you are probably used to the unusual directing if you watched "memories"
Sound: Nice, but nothing out of ordinary. There are no tracks that you would remember after finishing whole series, but they match the scenes, and are quite enjoyable. The opening is very similar to the opening from the first season, but it has a nice feeling to it.
Character: The main characters in "melodies" are very well made, and i liked them much more than main characters in "memories". I felt that they are more mature and convincing, but their development was rather predictable. Still- better than in first season.
Enjoyment: I believe everybody will find something they will like in "ef - a tale of melodies". The story is quite intense (for a drama series), but short (12 episodes). Personally, i finished it in two days, so i didin't get too attached to the whole series, but i still find it very amusing, and i don't regret one minute spent in front of the screen.
Overall: Great piece of work. Everything is solid and well-made, so i gave the series 9. If you didin't liked the first season, i don't think you will like the second, because it basicly extends the ideas from the first one. However, it's worth a try, since it's a a little bit better. read more
Nov 23, 2012
Story(9/10)- Melodies takes place after the events of A Tale of Memories. It focuses on the stories of the side characters, Yuu Himura, Shuuichi Kuze and the mysterious woman in black, Yuuko Amaymiya. Unlike its predecessor, Melodies is much more darker in tone, and in subject matter. When tackling subjects like: rape, isolation, rejection, and inadequacy, the contrast between Melodies and Memories is much more apparent. Though, like its predecessor, it still remains collection of love stories intertwined. However, instead of both stories being set in the present, one is of the past and one is of the future. They represent the dichotomy of past and future. We cannot change the past, however we can always look forward to the future.
Melodies does not use a conventional way of storytelling. It told mostly through symbolism, for example: in the OP you see a girl bound by changes, or sometimes the scene changes from color to black and white, representing change in the characters mood. Luckily, these scenes are easier to understand as opposed to Memories.
The dialogue is some of the best out there, especially when compared to most romance anime. If you take all of each characters lines, they could be molded into a beautiful poem. Coupled with strong dialogue and a cathartic ending, this deserves to be called one of the greatest romance anime out there.
Art(9/10)- The artstyle is rich, flamboyant, and beautiful. SHAFT is well known for their style of animation, mixing a bunch of different styles into a cohesive and unique experience. The art really brings life to the conversations, and adds an extra layer of emotionality to the more dramatic scenes.
Sound(9/10)- The soundtrack for Melodies is very powerful. Songs like "A Moon Filled Sky," are breathtakingly gorgeous. The OP and ED are also very strong and are laced with allusions and foreshadowing.
Character(9/10)- The cast for Ef is probably one of the most complex out there. One can compare to the show to a psychological analysis of sorts. Each character has a debilitating mental illness similar to that of neurosis. Take for example Yuu Himura, he is a man who has isolated himself from world. He refuses to get close to anyone so he won't be hurt again. When watching Ef, you learn of his tragic past with Yuuko that causes him to not be the loner he is in the present day. Another great character is Kuze, he is notorious womanizer who constantly wears, "Masks," to hide his true feelings from himself and others. You get a look into his own turmoil and agony. Yuuko, is a girl who afraid of rejection. She cannot handle being alone so she will cling to anyone, as long as she has a place to return to. Every character could be described as, "broken," but they find solace in the comfort of their loved ones.
Enjoyment(9/10)- I enjoyed this season more than the first due to the more mature tones. I prefer this season more but if you like the first season more I understand. Both of these seasons compliment each other, it is essentially two tales that become one.
Overall, Ef A tale of Melodies gets a 9/10. It is a powerful and beautiful love story. The Ef series belongs up there with the likes of Clannad, Kanon, and Rumbling Hearts. It is a must watch for all romance enthusiasts out there. read more
Sep 1, 2009
I absoulutely loved how closely season 1 and 2 are incorporated. Every character from season 1 and 2 were carefully intertwined with one and another, giving the show a wonderful feel to it.
The opening from both seasons were awesome and sung in english too, which is something that doesn't happen very often. There was even an episode that had both of the openings played and thus added in a lively tone for the episode.
This anime was certainlly a masterpiece. Each and every little love story were strokes of success for this anime. Ef, was certainly a refreshing one and is something that will stand out for many years to come. It has truly inspired me as a person to persue my passions and have also encouraged me to face the long road of happiness ahead. I hope that every single viewer out there can take a little piece of this anime and keep it for the rest of their lives. Then maybe one day, there will be a town full of happiness. read more
May 5, 2012
Starting the analysis from the story part, you can immediately tell from the beggining that this anime is a whole level above others of its kind in matters of plot and emotional storylines. After it's prequel --ef-tale of memories-- I didn't think that this anime would develop so greatly. But I was surprised to see that this anime had a so much better second season. Especially, after seen the problems of the young ones in the first season and watching them getting solved with the assistance of Yuuko, Yuu and Kuze and then watching their stories, I was thrilled to even think that people with so serious problems could help others so much. I admire their courage and strength of heart.The whole storyline was organised very good with it's flashbacks being tied beautifully with the main story and present. The only reason I give this story a 9 is that some cliche in this kind of stories can't be avoided.
The art of this anime, even though it's 4-5 years old, it's beautiful with very good design of the characters and well - fiting to the unique style of the anime. The use of absence of colors along with the story was ingenius in my opinion, and was used many times as the series were progressing. The absence of color from the characters due to their past was filled with the color and warmth of love and gave them the courage to live a little longer. Also, the character's emotions were brought to life with the beautiful art direction and I dare to say that this anime one of the top three I have watched, if not the most, emotional exists to date, all because of the excellent combination of the art and extraordinary storylines.
ef's ost is just beautiful. You know, the choice of violin as the main instrument of series is not random. Violin is certainly the "king" , if I could say, of instruments. And that's because it is the instrument that probably brings to reality better than any other instrument music's true goal: the touch of the human's heart. Listening to the violin you feel Kuze's heart wavering and pain, so intense, that could never been better achieved with other mean than music. The opening is just great and combined with great art direction literally gives you the chills every time you watch it.
Here's my 10. Why? Amazing character development. How it comes? We can see Yuu, first losing his sister out of fear in the earthquake and has this event etched deeply in his heart. He meets Yuuko, who wants to come close to him with the excuse of being his sister, even though she loves him as a man. Yuu, with his scar still fresh, reject her triggering a chain of events that comes back right at him after many years. And there you see an intelligent young man fighting within himself about his past actions and love. Seeing him coming close to murder for love but not achieving him because he is still human, triggers his main character development. And when achieving happiness, God takes his hapiness away for no reason, makes you think if God really exists and how can be so cruel sometimes especially in those humans who have suffered and endured many difficulties in their lives. One of the most EPIC scenes I have seen and that describe perfectly Yuu's life, is the scene in the opening of the series where he is shown crucified trying to break free of the spikes when he sees Yuuko, and eventually managing to achieve it in the last episode's ending. Never seen such an EMOTIONAL_EPIC scene before. Kuze in the other hand, is another character with excellent development. He knows he is going to die, so he is shutting himself inside and want to have bad relationships even with his best friends and the one he loves, because he doesn't want to hurt them. He's wearing masks, an object used many times in Greek dramas, symbolising the fake side of his character. But love manages to make him fear of death and want to cling on life further, as long as he can. His heart's strength is admirable and his monologues are "emotional bombs" If I could say. Closing the character part, Yuuko is the definition of a divine creature that truely wants the best for all the people, even though they can be cruel many times. That's the reason she becomes angel and continues to help other people solve their problems along the series. So Yuu is constantly suffering from the past and Kuze is constantly afraid of what his future hold in store for him.
This anime manages to bring emotions to watchers within it's combination of music, art and amazing plot.It is one of the anime that have accomplished to digest the basic ideas of the Greek drama, and that's the sole reason that this anime can bring tears to any people's face, including me. This anime touched me. This anime moved me. This anime made me think about being fortunate to have a good health and not losing someone I treasure and love the most. This anime ,in general, CHANGED MY EMOTIONAL WORLD from it's foundations. I hope that I will see many anime like that in the future. Ef- tale of melodies, sincerely yours, Stefanos. read more
Oct 2, 2012
Aug 11, 2011
how do I put it....there are just way too many negative elements dumped on one person, and the emphasis is either way too focused or way too distracted. I understand that as a drama, there have to be some tragedy involved, either in the past or present. However, this doesn't mean an overemphasis of these tragedies will make the show more tear-jerking. I honestly cried a river in clannad after story but this didn't make me shed one tear.
Story-wise, it goes back and forth from present to past not really in the form of flashbacks, which is nice for a thriller, but I think this strategy totally backfired on the drama aspect of the show. By the end, neither what happened in the past nor what's happening in the present can be thoroughly enjoyed. Even the complicated ties among all the characters in the past and present cannot make up for the lack of real bond among all the characters. Why? Because there was never one to start with. The story is badly told to be convincing, not to say the characters are too unreal to be unbelievable. Who on earth get to be adopted, beaten, raped, and then die in a car accident? Even if such persons exist (which I suppose is more believable during war times), the ties are too convenient to be even called fate. Fate would laugh at such ties.
A drama as unreal as this doesn't even deserve to called one. And, this isn't a melodrama either. The psychological sections scattered throughout the story aren't very convincing either because the overall setting and atmosphere aren't powerful enough. Even the dialogues, which I admit have some depth, are too unnatural to even make an impact.
What I think is, the creators tried too hard. I feel like they want to make a show that breaks the drama genre without going into horror or action (I'm guessing it from the opening and some excerpts), but I think their effort backfired.I even prefer a good old melodrama to this. read more
Apr 4, 2010
Story (10): The story lines can make you pause and think for a little bit. However, that is only because it switches between past and present. Don't get me wrong, ef switches between stories and times quite nicely in a way that flows wonderfully, but the simple nature that you are seeing the same characters in the past and present might be confusing for the first episode or so. That said, I loved the story in this. It is even better than in tale of memories. I don't want to give anything away, but the stories were just fantastic.
Art (9): Much like memories, the art can be pretty unique. The "regular stuff" won't blow you away. It's nice and pretty and at times beautiful, sure, but nothing that will make you pause the video just to look at a beautiful background. Basically it's is really well done (just not quite OMG enough for a 10). If you watched memories, you know what I mean when I say that at times the art is unique. You can tell the artists really tried to be artistic. And a lot of the times it works really well and to cool effect. However, sometimes the artists seem to go on these acid trips... it kinda works for the scene that they're in, but you may not like it too much. Overall, the art quite good, even unique at times, and in no way makes the viewing not enjoyable.
Sound (8): No complaints here. Everything was well done. There is a sub theme of music in the series (hence the name) and I would say the music was quite good and always did a great job of setting the mood or simply adding extra beauty.
Character (9): Some great characters in the series. The development was fantastic and the way they mered past and present was really good. You really got an idea for the characters and what they went through.
Enjoyment (10): I loved this anime. Kept me on the edge of my seat and I couldn't help but keep watching. Great stuff!
Overall (9): A fantastic series that I recommend to anyone who likes the romance, drama, slice of life style anime. read more
Feb 16, 2013