English: Hetalia Axis Powers
Japanese: ヘタリア Axis Powers
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Jan 24, 2009 to Mar 5, 2010
5 min. per episode
PG-13 - Teens 13 or older
L represents licensing company
Score: 7.981 (scored by 39961 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
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SynopsisBased on a popular web-released manga series by Hidekazu Himaruya, this has been described as a "cynical gag" story set in Europe in the years between WW1 and WW2 (1918-1939), using exaggerated caricatures of the different nationalities as portrayed by a gaggle of bishōnen. For example, the Italia Veneziano character is into pasta and women. The Deutsche (German) bishi loves potatoes and sausages, and Nippon is an otaku boy. Installments of the manga have jumped back and forth in setting from the ancient times to modern-day geopolitics. The manga's title comes the Japanese words for "useless" (hetare) and Italy (Italia).
Related AnimeAdaptation: Hetalia Axis Powers
Side story: Hetalia Axis Powers Movie: Paint it, White, Hetalia Axis Powers Fan Disc
Sequel: Hetalia World Series
Characters & Voice Actors
When I first heard of this series, it was from my anime-obsessed friend, who had recently turned me over to anime and manga. Now, this was at three in the morning, mind you, and I didn't feel like reading the manga, so I searched for the anime. Upon finding the first episode, I had to pause it every few seconds to read what they were saying, because it was going by so fast. After a minute or two, I decided, 'Screw this, I'm going to sleep'. About a month later, I decided that I would really try to watch the anime. Once I got past the first rapid-fire scene, I found it to be extremely enjoyable. Having a lot of time on my hands, I ended up watching thirty episodes in one day. The 26th episode is by far my favorite. (More than one of my family members/friends have received threats from Busby's Chair.) Though it can be found offensive and stereotypical, what many people will not admit is that they thought those exact same things about most of the countries represented here. They just never voiced their opinions, while Hetalia has really gone out there and said what everyone else was thinking. For that, it has earned my utmost respect as a viewer.
The story is really not there. It has almost no plot, and what little plot there is has been spread so thin it's barely visible. I get that its about World Wars one and two, but that becomes blurred, mostly due to the fact that Hetalia tends to jump around, and focus on many different points in history at random times. Somehow, it makes this work. So, I give it a six.
I find the art of the Hetalia anime to be very cutesyd-up, to the point where even some of the most intimidating countries make you want to go 'Awwww!'. It definitely isn't the best animation I've ever seen, but it was good considering it was adapted from webcomics that were little more than sketches themselves. I'm sure all watchers of Hetalia remember the small, pastel-colored, patterned frames they put around some of the scenes. While distracting at times, I believe they are there to separate whatever scene is going on in that frame from the regular storyline of that episode. I find that helpful and creative. Another part of the art that I love is the Chibitalia segments. I found myself 'awww!'ing every few seconds over the adorable little toddler. So, all in all, the art is not the best it could be, but it is enough to make even the most angsty teenager smile.
The beginning 'theme' is much more suited for a moment in 'Star Trek' than a satirical history anime. But, I will put up with it, mostly because I forget about it until it's blasting in my ears. The ending theme, however, is a completely different story. Almost immediatly after finishing my first Hetalia session, I found myself rushing to download it onto my Ipod, along with all the other versions for characters such as Japan, Prussia, England, Austria, and France. The only grievance I have is that I didn't get any warning before Germany started shouting in my ear at the end of episode 27. Other than that, the background music was acceptable for the scenes. Overall, an eight seems sufficient.
The characters are extremely stereotypical. Germany is a muscley, blond-haired, blue-eyed stick-in-the-mud, Italy is a pasta-loving, airheaded weakling, France practically molests everyone he sees, and has red roses appearing out from behind him at random instances. France and England hate each other, Germany has to bail Italy out every other second, and America is a hamburger-loving hard-head with a hero complex. But, what can you expect from personified countries? The only way to give them a personality is to magnify the things their residents are most known for. This can result in some hurt feelings, but I find it fun to laugh at myself sometimes, and I'm sure many other people do too. Stereotypes aside, I think that Hetalia did an amazing job giving chunks of land the ability to converse, joke around, and even have relationships. While on that subject, I'm sure most Hetalia watchers are aware of the male character's gay tendencies. This really only serves to draw in mostly girls, but it is drawing in viewers, and most of the yaoi/shonen-ai aspects are cleverly hidden so that only fangirls will be able to spot them. Overall, I think that an eight is in perfect order here.
I think this is the perfect anime to watch if your brain just needs a break from thinking. It takes almost no effort to watch, unlike a lot of the more twisty-turney suspenseful animes out right now. Or, if you're feeling a bit sad, and want some cheering up, this is good for a laugh or two. Mostly I just watch it because I get bored very easily, and it is extremely entertaining. Thus, I give it a nine.
All in all, this is a great anime. Despite the lack of plot, It still manages to be hilarious, idiotic, and clever all at the same time. A lot of work must have gone into putting the manga and the anime together, and I appreciate hard work. Especially when it comes in the form of twenty or thirty bishounens.
I hope my review helped you to make the right choice on this anime!
NOTE: I do read/follow the scanalations so while I do not think there are any spoilers, it will probably make my review a bit biased.
The series is definitely interesting and unique, but there really is not an overlying story or plot. You're not really going to find much in plot development or anything, as it is more about relaying historical events with a heavy basis on character relations.
While cute (especially with the Chibitalia moments), the artwork and animation is not really all that special. Also, the fact that it is only a webcast (thus far) is not really helpful.
The voice actors generally fit pretty well; some people who have read the manga probably had different expectations for some of the characters, but overall they are still pretty good. The ED is also ridiculously cute and addictive.
The characters are really the focus of the series: them and their interactions. While some people find find the stereotypes for the series a bit offensive, it is meant in a humorous way, and every country is pretty much subjected to the same mockery/praise. But it is the stereotypes that make the characters great and amusing, because when you see them you really think "Oh, that really is what I can imagine out of some people from ______."
Despite the fact that each episode is only 5 minutes long, the episodes are extremely amusing. While nothing dramatic has happened yet, the comedy so far has been done pretty well.
However, if I really didn't know much about history, I would not enjoy this series nearly as much as I do. Often it's the small things that make me go "Oh yeaaah, I remember learning that!" that make me smile.
While the series isn't a masterpiece or perfect so far, I find it still really good. Simply because while it is not heavy on serious drama or anything yet, it is very entertaining and simply adorable.
I would not recommend this series to anyone who is easily offended or does not know much about world history (namely around the WW I to WW II era). read more
Although their plots are very different, both offer the same type of humor. The characters fall under certain stereotypes, as well. In Hetalia, the characters are stereotypes of the countries they represent. In Ouran, the characters fall under stereotypes of different types of men that would appeal to girls. And of course, both contain plenty of bishonen, but do appeal to all demographics.
BISHIES EVERYWHERE. There are very few girl characters in either anime. That is really the only similarity between the two. That, and Italia's personality reminds me a bit of Tamaki's. Both are good animes, and both deserved to be watched.
Both are great comedies with caricatures of characters, and you will notice similarities between some of the characters too.
Both series contains many fun parodies and humor that is often exaggerated throughout each episode. The main male protagonist from both series have similar personalities.
Both series features more of a lighthearted background and a fun atmosphere rather than anything particularly serious.
The concepts of 'bishounens' are also present in both series with its cast of characters.
If you like stereotypes then this is a good one, however the characters are stereotyped by the country they represent. There is also a similar humor to ouran.
Both are lighthearted mostly comedy drama, with a hint of relationship troubles and drama added in.
Both are fun shows based on stereotypes, though different kinds. Both are personal favorites of mine, too. While Hetalia has less of a story arc than Ouran, they both have similar humor and tone ( I only wouldn't recommend Hetalia if you're really sensitive to racism) But if you love Ouran for the Humor, I can guarantee you'll love Hetalia.
Opening Theme"Hetalia no Ooinaru Sekai (ヘタリアの大いなる世界) (Hetalia, World's Greatest) by Conisch (コーニッシュ)
Ending Theme#1: "Marukaite Chikyuu (Italy version)" by Daisuke Namikawa
#2: "Marukaite Chikyuu (Germany version)" by Hiroki Yasumoto (ep 27)
#3: "Marukaite Chikyuu (Japan version)" by Hiroki Takahashi (ep 30)
#4: "Marukaite Chikyuu (Russia version)" by Yasuhiro Takato (ep 43)
#5: "Marukaite Chikyuu (United Kingdom version)" by Noriaki Sugiyama (ep 46)
#6: "Marukaite Chikyuu (France version)" by Masaya Onosaka (ep 47)more
#7: "Marukaite Chikyuu (America version)" by Katsuyuki Konishi (ep 49)
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