Japanese: XXX ホリック
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Apr 7, 2006 to Sep 29, 2006
Duration: 24 min. per episode
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or olderL represents licensing company
Score: 8.201 (scored by 40443 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
2 based on the top anime page.
Popular Tagsclamp comedy fantasy mystery supernatural
Jul 19, 2008
The story behind Holic is intriguing and interesting, revolving around spirits, ghosts, and the very strange. Geared towards an older and more sophisticated audience, there's little action, but loads of thought-provoking and amazingly insightful dialogue. Holic is the kind of anime that gets your mind pumping about topics such as fate, destiny, and one's purpose in life. Plus, there's a side to it that makes statements about how people live and society in general. Not to mention that it's educational as well. Holic offers an insight into a part of Japanese culture that most people rarely see.
Concerning the plot, however, Holic is another anime that is driven by episodic events. There seems to be no real overall direction for the story. Normally, this would leave me feeling slightly cheated and unsatisfied, but after surviving through the likes of Ouran and the Wallflower, I've come to accept that the episodic plot system is a genre on its own and it's here to stay.
Unfortunately, a plot that doesn't know where it's going hurts any character development. The characters are well made, with their own distinct personalities, but stay relatively the same throughout the course of the plot. No one shows very much significant growth. Granted, everyone is wiser and better, having learned the lessons distributed throughout 24 episodes of madness. Perhaps that's the elusive character growth that I've been looking for?
In terms of artwork, the artistic foundations were laid down in the manga by the increasingly popular mangaka group CLAMP. And they've done a very good job. Yuuko's wardrobe is definitely something to pay attention to (ahem), and though everyone has ridiculously long arms, legs, and necks, it actually provides a sense of levity in a serious setting (that, and the alcoholism). Alas, there's a slight issue with the fact that only the characters important to the plot are actually drawn in. Any bodies that are only required to be "fillers" (like a bunch of random people at a supermarket) are not colored and lack faces. In my opinion, it has symbolic meaning, but it could also be attributed to pure laziness. Dunno which to choose.
Oh, and speaking of laziness, the sound was great. Loved the opening theme, but didn't really pay attention to the background music. Voice-acting was top notch, especially with all the high pitched and slightly unique voices coming from characters like Mokona, Maru, and Moro. That is all.
In the enjoyment section: I finished Holic in the space of a week, and indeed, I was completely hooked. I savored every bit of supernatural strangeness, and I'll be looking for more with the second season.
Finally, Holic certainly isn't unique, for there seems to be an ever-growing list of anime that deal with the supernatural, the occult, and just really weird stuff in general. But as a starter series for the newly-converted, it's definitely worth watching. read more
May 29, 2010
xxxHolic is a show that tries to stimulate the viewer in many different ways. There's adventure, philosophy, plenty of comedy, and sometimes action, all with a distinctly CLAMPy flair. The routine nature of Watanuki's life between school and the shop allows for episodes to be largely interchangeable with no heavy storyline that covers all or even most of the season. Truth be told, Watanuki's wish to stop seeing spirits is rarely mentioned after the first episode, and it's basically just an excuse to have him start working at the shop. That's not necessarily a complaint though, because the individual stories or mini-arcs that make up the show are wholly fulfilling on their own.
Although Watanuki is the protagonist, Yuko is the real star of the series and undeniably magnetic. Although her origins remain a mystery, she has enough charm and personality to keep one watching in any situation. On the surface, she playfully teases and bosses Watanuki around but seems to genuinely care about him even though she never explicitly states her feelings about... well, anything. Because Yuko is so attuned to the absolution of fate, she never gets emotional. Because Yuko is a wish granter, she doesn't help other people until they ask for and purchase her help. Even if she wanted to do otherwise, it would create an imbalance. Yet she never comes across as cold. She can be playful, aloof, serious, motherly, childish, sexy, and spontaneous.
The strength of xxxHolic is the way it uses colorful and whimsical events to illustrate the hidden side of human nature. Everyone who comes into the shop has a wish. It's never a shallow wish, and it's often something that is unusual or shameful. Watanuki is often confused by the problem or the solution, but Yuko explains to him many truths to life. The unspoken plot of xxxHolic is Yuko's role as a teacher to Watanuki, in result making him more of an adult. Aside from the philosophy, just being able to witness the wonderful mystical scenes of the spirit world for the first time with Watanuki is a treat.
If there's a downside to xxxHolic, it is probably the comedy, which comes across as cliched. Plus, they run the same gags into the ground again and again. One can't help but notice how Watanuki happily spazzes out every time the girl he has a crush on, Himawari, smiles at him. Then, his rival/friend Doumeki shows up, says one or two words, and Watanuki spazzes angrily with cartoonish exuberance. This is a scene you'll find in almost every episode of xxxHolic through both seasons. It's unfortunate that such a large amount of the show is comedy, because those parts are very run-of-the-mill.
The artwork is largely what you might expect from CLAMP, which is good to me, but everyone has REALLY long and skinny arms, legs, and torsos, to the point where Watanuki looks like a spider when he bends his legs. So while I wouldn't call most of the characters attractive, the style fits the show. The animation is minimized in a lot of scenes and episodes, and it's easy to see that when you contrast the first season to the second season which has improved production values. But it absolutely doesn't hurt the show very much.
For me, the complete attraction to xxxHolic is hard to summarize. It's a stylish feel, a mood, a charisma that the entire show gives off that kept me watching from beginning to end. It's the tension when Yuko shares a cup of tea with her new client. It's the relaxed feeling when Doumeki and Watanuki participate in the annual monster procession. It's the creeping madness of the owner of a monkey's paw. While not a perfect show by any means, it's a worthy addition to any library. read more
Jul 7, 2007
It’s funny – thanks to Watanuki’s wild antics as well as Mokona’s drunkenness. Creepy – mostly because it scared the heck out of me sometimes (especially episode 10, 12 and 24). Dark, because it presents the world in a way that people rarely see. It’s interesting – you get hooked into it and you actually become an xxxHOLIC-holic. Finally, it’s clever because it doesn’t take the viewers for fools.
The characters are just great. Doumeki and Watanuki are yin and yang. They always seem to have this love-hate comedy routine wherein Doumeki says one thing then it annoys Watanuki right off the bat, then Himawari comments on how close they are. I also like Yuuko. I am always amazed by her wisdom and how she takes on her job. I think the concept of just compensation in something other than money is very clever. I like her here more, instead of the Yuuko from TRC. The black Mokona cracks me up as well even though I’m a tad bothered that he’s not as well mannered as the white Mokona.
Production IG’s work was a bit interesting. The visuals seemed off to me sometimes, but there’s something about it that keeps me watching. I didn’t like the colors though, since most of it was concentrated on the main characters/elements. The background elements seemed a bit dull sometimes. I did like the demon parade episode, because the scenes were more vivid than usual. As expected of CLAMP, the characters have slightly deformed body types and tall and stringy characters. I guess it’s what separates them from others.
I’m not familiar too with the three main seiyuu, but I think they did a splendid job. Jun Fukuyama was very entertaining as Watanuki. Sayaka Ohara’s mature, sultry and womanly voice fit Yuuko’s personality really well and Kazuya Nakai’s voice was also well suited to Doumeki’s character. Of course, Mika Kikuchi was very entertaining as Mokona as well.
The music was very much like the plot – a bit dark, but contemporary. I like the catchy opening theme (19sai), the cutesy first ending theme (Reason), and the j-rock second ending theme (Kagerou). The BGM really helped in making things a lot more creepier too.
I’m really glad that I found the time to watch the series. I have to say that this is my favorite CLAMP series by far – mostly because the CLAMP series I’ve seen haven’t impressed me as much as xxxHOLIC. I’ll end this review with Yuuko’s words that resonated throughout the series – There is no such thing as coincidence in this world. There is only the inevitable. read more
Mar 9, 2008
- xxxHOLiC is about the daily lives of Watanuki and Yuuko. Two characters whos fate has intertwined. xxxHOLiC is a collection of different strange yet interesting stories which happens to produce a happy ending on every episode. One particular viewer would learn something from the episodes of xxxHOLiC. It's about the mistake of humans and the solution to them were given by the main character "Yuuko". I'd say that some episodes were mediocre but interesting enough.
- Production IG was involved, judging the fact that this anime were made in the year 2006, I'd say that the animation is somewhat outdated. I'm not saying that it is that bad, it's just that there's nothing special about the animation. The characters stays on their intentionally deformed shape. It's not that bad really.
- I like the BGM used in this anime. It is ingeniously used in every episode and fits the whole episode inside out. The group behind the BGM is SENS project and they're really good. They really did portray the word "Mysterious" in their works and it is really notable. Some scores were relaxing, one track I liked is shizuka na hibi. The OP is good and the ED "Reason" is love XDD. Everyone would enjoy listening to the music used in xxxHOLiC.
-There are different characters with different situations. Most of the characters bears different sins and after they consult Yuuko, they seem to vanish for Yuuko grants their wish to cleanse their sins and live normally. One would relate to one or two characters or even more in xxxHOLiC. In short, xxxHOLiC portrays the problems of today and how to solve them, this is one factor that I've noticed and cherished most. That's why I gave it this score.
-It's enjoyable and relaxing. Although there are some scary episodes, it's not like you'll brood and will never sleep about it, the scare factor here is mild don't worry. This anime will relax you and you'll learn different lessons about life, sins and the pain they bring.
-The second season is coming out, what are you waiting for? grab xxxHOLiC. It's worth your time and I hope you will enjoy this anime just like I did. read more
Oct 7, 2007
The art style was something I had to get used to. Everyone in xxxHOLiC has tremendously long limbs, which makes them really tall. I guess it makes it stand out compared to other more glossy, better-proportioned anime series out there. It’s pretty amusing how bosomy Yuuko is and how some of her many costumes shows it off off quite unabashedly. :P
As for characters, I really don’t care for Watanuki too much. He’s always so neurotic and prone to making a ruckus over the smallest things. However, as the main character, he gets the most character development, so that does make him difficult to hate. The other characters are prone to be kind of one-dimensional and can be summed up with a sentence. Watanuki’s love interest is cute, pretty and sweet and his rival/friend is stoic, dependable and more silent than not. I guess my favourite character is definitely Yuuko. While she doesn’t vary much from polarising from being mysterious and thoughtful, to being a spontaneous drunk, the former quality makes her very interesting. Character exploration is not too big in xxxHOLiC, but if you don’t mind the existing, albeit archetypal, character types, then it shouldn’t be a problem.
CLAMP’s attempt at humour works at times but it’s not a consistent thing. I personally don’t find it very funny whenever Watanuki gets all slapstickishly angry about something, but at times it does surprise me with how funny and adorable some of the characters are at times. But if you’re looking for consistent humour, this anime probably would not fit the bill.
xxxHOLiC is great if you want a well-paced, episodic anime that has somewhat of a focus on exploring social phenomena and human behaviour through a fate/destiny, supernatural light. Sometimes touching, often spooky, kooky and clever. Each episode, while it may not be gripping plot-wise, is one that leaves you wondering what the next episode would be about. read more
Jun 24, 2009
The music is wickedly haunting and appropriate, and compensates for the limited animation well in some episodes where it’s dearly needed. Actually, the music is pretty top-tier, especially when the mood calls for SCARY!
The dub is actually easier on the ears than the original Japanese and this is mostly due to the soothing liquidity in Yuuko and Doumeki’s voicework. It was wise of them to play their characters so rich and low, because Watanuki is the most incredibly annoying little goober I’ve ever heard. I’m not saying the acting is bad, because Watanuki’s clearly supposed to reach that ungodly level of spastic that he does and sometimes it’s really funny, but MORE often, oh gosh, I just want to send him to that little internment camp in Japan where they keep all the School Rumble characters so they can whip him into shape. Still, there’s no big difference between the language tracks, so preferences will just split where they always do. Oh, one of these days I’ll get to slam some bad voice acting…but not yet.
This series really isn’t bad for wasting time on, but the fact that I have to use the word “wasting” probably indicates how original or striking it is. Most of the adventures of Yuuko and company are underwhelming and talky enough to turn a two minute neat idea into a twenty minute “what the heck was that?” Let’s just say that Yuuko has a very particular way of looking at the world, and her routine cautionary speeches can become grating at best, and childishly elementary or just plain stupid in a pretty package at worst. Occasionally, Yuuko would state some grand moral that REALLY rubbed me the wrong way, and given how much she has to say, I imagine that this will be the case for most viewers at one point or another.
Mixed in with all these middling ideas, there are a few glowing gems, though, I can’t deny that. Episodes involving a snowball fight where the snowmen do the battling, and a shoutout episode to the famous short story, “The Monkey’s Paw,” are a few among them. Still, I’m talking roughly an eighth of the episodes are really memorable. xxxHolic relies far too much on these tired platitudes and more tired running gags like Yuuko always being drunk and/or hung over and Watanuki going off on Doumeki like a pasty-white cherry bomb.
It’s a shame because we really want to know more about Watanuki’s gift and what it has to do with the death of his parents, his friendship with Doumeki, and most importantly, his “destined” servitude to Yuuko. It’s something that is constantly foreshadowed but never revealed to even the smallest extent, in favor of more Hogwarts-esque hijinks. Sometimes all an episode will have going for it is a fun little reference to one of CLAMP’s many other series, and if that’s a draw, you know you’re in trouble story-wise.
So, while there’s fun to be had, the basic fact is that everything xxxHolic attempts, the style and the spirit, or spirits, if you wanna get all punny, has been done much better in different shows with higher budgets. (Kino’s Journey, Mushi-Shi, Galaxy Express 999) As such, while not at all bad, this is the first show I’ve reviewed that I can’t honestly recommend. It’s tearfully AVERAGE in every way possible. A ghost, if you will, of what it seems to promise.
All in all, xxxHolic leaps out as visually strange and narratively exciting, but it’s a hollow façade hiding a frequently boring show.
*THIS IS A PARTIAL TRANSCRIPT OF MY VIDEO REVIEW WHICH CAN BE FOUND HERE:
Thanks for reading! read more
Dec 21, 2008
Xxxholic is a slice of life anime that showcases several supernatural settings that is in one way or another, very similar to real life situations. It shows how greed brings loss, lies can be fatal and how love andfriendship can save.
The story is about extra-ordinary events in Watanuki's life such as meeting creatures seen from folk and fairy tales and exploring different grounds known only from myth books, while working as a part-timer in a mysterious shop of Ichihara Yuuko, the witch that grants wishes for a price.
If you noticed how I emphasized this anime as a masterpiece, it's because I've never seen an anime done a marvelous job in connecting fantasy and reality than this one.
Regarding it's art and character, the design was good especially in creating Ichihara Yuuko (my favorite CLAMP character), the CLAMP expressed well how an Elegant Witch would be.
What I enjoyed the most is how every conflict was ended by a conclusion from Yuuko. In such ways, these words will be treasures not only br Watanuki but also by viewers on how they value the elements of life.
Every Slice of Life fan will surely love Xxxholic. read more
Mar 9, 2013
Speaking of art, there's not much to talk about. The character's extremities are blown way out of proportion. It is what it is, I suppose it adds a unique spin on the quite regular locations where the anime takes place. The one really interesting thing about the artwork though, is that any non-essential character to the episode isn't colored, and isn't detailed. They have no face, no distinguishable clothes from each other(as in variety) , or any vibrance to them whatsoever. Now, this may be seen from a lack of funding/laziness perspective, but to me it really adds to the whole feel of the philosophical side. They don't change the anime in any way, so it doesn't matter what they look like, or what they wear. Very much so like in real life. There is really only one complaint you can have about this series, and that would be the actual animation. It can be choppy at times, but truly doesn't count as a negative in my opinion. It's not a fast paced anime, there's practically never any action, so higher framerate animations wouldn't add much to the series. Just my 2 cents.
Onto the sound, fantastic. Numerous times throughout the anime characters will be walking around in a crowded area, like a mall or courtyard. The ambient chatter and conversations are always present when you'd expect them. Footsteps aplenty, making the environment always feel real. I guess voice acting would fall under this category, so I must say, it was superb. Honestly, top notch voice acting on Watanuki. The first episode had me crying from laughter at the sincerity with which the voice actor portrayed in his voice. You can tell the emotion is there, from Himawari's schoolgirl innocent-esque, to Yuuko's deep, sophisticated delivery. These voice actors absolutely nailed their parts, and made the characters extremely life like, and made the world entirely believable.
The characters themselves are well thought out, though interaction between them can be muddy at times (Watanuki's seemingly irrational hate for Domoki). This can easily be forgotten though, as it is hyperbole for the sake of comedy. Each individual character though, is different from the others, and contrast with the others very well. Each one of them has a distinct characteristic that makes them unique, Domoki's indifference, Watanuki's passion, Yuuko's intelligence, and Himowari's innocence. I suppose each one represent's an element of human behavior, and the relations between them show how we have conflicting emotions within us at all times. I'm no philosopher, so enough about that.
My overall enjoyment of xxxHOLiC was through the roof. I honestly was ecstatic when I found out xxxHOLic Kei was the sequel, because I can't get enough of this series. From Watanuki's always present sarcastic remarks, to the intelligent philosophical intrigues from Yuuko, this whole series amazed me. I honestly don't understand how you can pack so much into just one anime. It has the perfect blend of comedy, and brilliance, which don't typically go hand in hand, at least not very well. I felt like each episode taught me something new about myself, and left me pondering life with the questions Yuuko arose many times throughout the series.
Overall, if you're looking for a clever plot with thought-out character progression, look elsewhere, because there's little to none in xxxHOLiC. But, if you are looking for a mature anime, that's extremely entertaining, look no further. read more
Apr 24, 2010
Art_ I loved the artwork, it could have been touched up or more vibrant, but for this anime it definitely suited the dark atmosphere. The detailed kimonas, the cat like eyes, everything was perfectly in place. The way they did Yuuko's hair so beautifully.
The Subject: Most then anything I enjoyed the offbeat plot. Most of the themes in this series revolved around bad vices and good vices and what control we really have over them. All in all it's the type of story that makes you think and has in impact whether you take it lightly or not. There can be a deeper meaning. For those who like to delve into the darker side of the human psyche this would be a perfect anime for you watch. Wise tales can be told in fiction..
Watanuki Kimihiro: is a typical high-school student living on his own because his parents were lost at a young age. He is down-to-earth and selfless, however some what of a loner. Also since he was a small he has has the ability to see and hear spirits.
The story seems to jump write into the plot line within the first few minutes. At once it is a typical scholastic student heading home from school when suddenly he is surrounded by demons, unknown to the casual observer; he becomes weighed down in all this supernatural power. Some how he manages to find refuge in a strange shop he hadn't noticed before. Inside the shop is a beautiful but almost devilish woman who tell that she can grant his with to make the spirits disappear.
Of course with some compensation.
Yuuko Ichiharais: a very powerful witch, mostly known for her ability to send people to other dimensions and times (sometimes called "The Dimensional Witch" reference from Card Captor and Tsubasa Chronicles), and for her ability to grant any wish in exchange for an equal cost. Despite her seemingly immature and free-spirited attitude, Yuuko is also sage-like and serious when the time calls for it.
During is part time work at her shop Yuku inadvertently helps Watanuki in daily trials and dealing with his gifts. Watanuki also finds friends who accept his strange gifts. Along the way he befriends a Shinto Priest in training who helps ward off the demons that Watanuki seems to attract.
Shizuka Dōmeki: is Watanuki's classmate and one-sided rival. He is part of the school's archery club and often participates in school competitions. He lives in a shrine owned by his late grandfather. Dōmeki's personality sharply contrasts with Watanuki's, as he is calm and often sarcastic. Dōmeki has the ability to rid evil spirits and is immune to most curses, mostly due to his ancestry and his upbringing in his grandfather's temple.
Watanuki at first disdains Domeki kun but eventually appreciates his presence in most things unless he tries in interferer with his love interest that is...
Himawari Kunogi: Watanuki's main love interest. She is a kind and caring girl, but inadvertently brings bad luck to everyone she comes into contact with, with the exception of her parents and Dōmeki.
Music: Excellent, the background music was perfect at all time and I loved the theme songs. The Credits song was okay, but the intro won out :)
Art: I loved the artwork, it could have been touched up or more vibrant, but for this anime it definitely suited the dark atmosphere. The detailed kimonas, the cat like eyes, everything was perfectly in place. I loved the anime.
May 10, 2010
Everything about it, the story, the art, sound, characters, even the enjoyment were simply SPECTACULAR... I might be exaggerating, but really, its 'that' amazing! Though I haven't finished reading the manga, i swear the anime was good enough that i almost cried the hell out after I finished watching it.
Yuuko Ichihara really has her own way to touch my soul,, everything she says, every deliberate acts she do, it is as if she knew everything since the very beginning. (Indeed, she do!)
What she says, it seems she feels the same way... it seems she could actually read one's soul. She sees right through you, she feels right through you... and every time i watched it, it makes me think, do such person exist? I mean, she's way beyond an existence, and for the first time in my life, after i learned about her, i realize how ignorant i am in this damn cruel world. I hate to admit this, but she sure was the one who enlightens me. She was the one that makes me see the world otherwise.
Even with Watanuki Kimihiro, though he is clumsy in some way (every way), he has this certain 'charisma' that makes me love him. He's one hell of a friend, a perfect friend you would want to have in your locker. (Though he didn't notice it himself). The 'bad' part about him was he was willing to sacrifice even his own self for the sake of others... but i still like him anyway...
Oh great... to put it simply, xxxHolic is GREAT! read more
Mar 25, 2009
Dec 17, 2008
The art of the anime is superlative. It takes time to get adjusted to the slightly unconventional art, but one soon gets used to it. Additionally, every character except the lead characters is not clearly drawn; rather, you get gray silhouettes which serve to further accentuate the lead characters’ behavior.
The lead characters themselves are very-well conceived of. Their physical structure embodies their traits, and gives us a sense of something slightly off from the real world.
That said the story is eerily un-CLAMP-like. There are not many happy endings, just enough to get the reader hooked. Most times, the evildoer gets a punishment for what he has done, in a way that serves to hold his crime up to the moral judgment of the viewer. But the damage is not restricted; sometimes, even the person who is nearby or a family member also gets mixed up. The story at times seems so real-life that one has to literally shake his illusions away. Several philosophical issues are treated with such deftness that even the hardiest Sophist would be hard put to deny their efficacy on the viewer’s mind.
The character conceptualization is a work of pure finesse, characteristic of I.G. works. Watanuki is a deep study in psychology, Yuuko Ichihara is one of the charismatic philosophers ever seen in anime, and both Domeki and Himawari depict two sides of the human animal: the strong, disbelieving side, and the believer inside every one of us. Maru and Moro, as well as the irritably cute Mokona, serve to lighten the viewer’s concentration with a dash of well-placed humor. Additional characters, such as the incredibly likable Vestal, and the hoity-toity Rain Sprite, also attract the viewer’s affection or irritation: an altogether natural reaction that all anime hopes for.
The music for the show is great. The OP, Suga Shikao’s 19sai, is a foot-tapping number (and my flagship song, hee hee). Its tight vocals and awesome accompaniments will make it an effortless climber on your playlist for sure. The EDs are similarly awesome; the first one, Reason by Fonogenico, will bring out the goofy side of you, while the second ED, Kagerou by BUCK-TICK, is a great listen, well-assisted by the credit scene, where we see Maru and Moro playing air guitar.
So, in conclusion, who do I recommend to? All the seriously concerned folks out there, for starters. Here many sensitive and basic ethical problems are treated with a delicacy and sophistry that’ll probably satisfy all your dreams of being philosophers. Secondly, all you guys who like the fables and myths of Japan should check it out; these abound in the anime. Thirdly, I’d recommend this anime to all those who enjoyed Ghost in the Shell and its beautiful leading lady; I assure you, Yuuko Ichihara is eminently suitable for your appreciation as well.
But that’s of course just a suggestion. All are welcome to see this funny yet serious, hysterical yet humbling view of men and their conception of their true worth in the world.
Jan 28, 2010
May 22, 2009
This "attraction" eventually brings Watanuki to the very mysterious house/shop of an agelessly beautiful witch named Yuuko, who grants wishes for a price. Yuuko takes a fancy to Watanuki and offers to eventually rid him of his problem, but for the price of having Watanuki become an unpaid servant in Yuuko's very strange household. Watanuki very quickly learns that there are many things in the world that are much stranger than the spirits that pester him, as he gains both an education in life, and an odd sort of "family" to replace the one that he doesn't have.
The "xxxHolic" anime excels at mixing humor, horror, romance and pathos in surprising doses and patterns. The cast of characters are likeable and intriguing, and the stories skillfully reiterate classical morality tales. Add to this a very enjoyable sound track and theme songs, and the result is a series that is memorable and demands re-watching.
Sep 13, 2010
First off we have a the story. A plot about a boy meeting a strange young lady who forces him to work for her, and together they discover the world isn't as what it appears to be. No matter how much I read and re-read the discription here, anime-planet, and many other fan sites, it still turned out with the same feeling when I was watching it. No sense. Confussion being the better word for it. There was nothing I could really tell that the discrib the plot at all, other than the few spirits roming about. But really in my opinion the story was rather dull and had no real meaning then episodic.
I think it was fair to say I though it was a 3. Cause really.. I never felt so bored, confused, and finding that it made no sense (when I myself can find things that make no sense, make sense.). This was a difficult thing to watch for me.
The art of this now.. I would say a four. It wasn't very good and it upset me to know that the background was so dull that you'd be forced to pay attention to the characters that are colored. That just sucked. There wasn't really anything good with it. Sure I admit I liked the few clothes that Yuuko wore and how they manage to pick out perfect color shades, but to be all honest.. there wasn't any life. I'd find myself drifting off at some points because of how dull the characters look, if it wasn't for the main boy making a big fuss I would have completely forgotten to watch.
But still it was descent enough.. to catch some interest, not much, but some.
The sound got another three. Now let me explain. When someone reviews the anime for sound they usually lower or higher between the version the watched ( I wish myanimelist had a reviewing system where we can review both, so no other users can get confused by the strange lower and higher reviews.) but this is for both the dub and subs. To be all honest.. I couldn't pay attention to them.. just like the art, the sound was no better.
The song choices... and I rarely find myself complaining. But I could listen to them.. The moment it came on I just had to put my dvd player in fast forward to avoid it. I also found myself doing that with the ending as well. I did bother to listen to them fully, which was almost as difficult as trying to flow the show itself. The problem was, was that the songs just were not good. Sure they may fit the anime to some degree (in most peoples opinion) but I couldn't stand listening to them.. once was enough.
The english cast now.. well what can I say. I am not surprised that FUNimation found away to mess them up as well, Tantum J.Michael was.. well like always.. dull and boring, with a gruff edge to it. ('sighs' I am still upset about him playing Sebastian.) The person who played the main boy.. well I think he was a bit wincy, and the other was just way to sweet. Yuuko was probably the only one I actually somewhat liked. Now I am trailing off.. Yes.. like everything else.. I found myself drifting off of the voice cast. The subs managed to catch some of my interest but not by much. Basically, I didn't really like either.
I would suppose Yuuko comes to the rescue here. Where as the other characters names I have forgotten, because of how bad they were, I found myself liking Yuuko. Her teasing nature, and oddness caught my interest right off. I couldn't help but laugh along with her on one occassion in this. If anything saved the other characters from my rating it was her. She was descent enough and seemed to bring some interest (though it was really low) to the other characters. Now for the other characters.. Like I said.. I have forgotten there names, which prooves that they weren't very rememberable. One complained a little to much, and the one was just unnoticable unless his name was spoken, the girl character now.. I just can't stand overly sweet. I couldn't bother to pay attention with them, when I knew I was just going to forget their names in the end, and what a shocker I did.
They way the limbs were draw looked like plastic stick figures. Arms were either to long, people looked six feet tall when they weren't suppose to.. Art was a tragedy in itself.
My enjoyment of this I will rate a 2. Because really this was just dreadful to my enjoyment. I rarely found myself liking anything about the anime other than Yuuko's sense of humor. I also couldn't pay attention to it very well (my own imagination was more interesting), and worst of all I felt completely disappointed by it. Just dreadful.
My rating for this one anime-planet is a 4.3. But seeing as I can't do it that way, I will rate it a solid 4. Though many things in this was poor, and one was dreadful. I have to say it was descent enough. It caught my interests a little, and provided me with one good laugh, but to be honest there are better anime that deal with the supernatural than this. read more
Feb 25, 2013
A misleading title is one of my only qualms with this series. Far from being some sort of ecchi comedy, xxxHolic was one of the most thought provoking, moving, and beautiful animes I've had the pleasure of viewing.
The roots of the show are set deep in the grounds of Japanese folklore. Fans of the animated movie Spirited Away or of animes like Natsume Yuujinchou are sure to love the world of spirits and mysteries crafted in xxxHolic.
The story is mostly episodic with numerous different stories taking palce over 1 or 2 episodes each. While I usually prefer serial animes with longer arcs, xxxHolic succeeds in connecting many of its episodes together. Instead of 20+ independant, stand-alone stories, we instead get what are more like snapshots of the characters life. Each 'picture' is different, yet all are connected and make up a larger story. Not only is this an excellent way to present a series, but each of the 20+ stories are masterpieces in and of themselves. Story earns a 9/10
The art in xxxHolic is, in my experience, unique. I personally found the original style to be completely beautiful, but not all will agree. Many find the slightly off human proprtions to be odd, and some find fault with over the top character movements. However most can agree that many of the backrounds, stories, and characters in xxxHolic are simply breathtaking. Scenic landscapes, a lantern parade of 1000 spirits, and an ever mysterious fortune teller's shop are just a handful of the many original and gorgeous scenes crafted by the show's masterful artwork. A deserved 10/10 for art in my most humble opinion.
Sound was also impressive. I, like most, don't often notice a soundtrack unless I'm listening for it. Yet the oftentimes powerful, and beautiful music of xxxHolic perfectly meshed with the art and story to create some truely moving moments. Character voicing was superb, from the exasperated voice of the protagonist to the lofty, confident tone of a fortune teller, the actors of the show did a fabulous job bringing the characters to life. And lastly, a catchy opener, and two decent endings left me smiling. Sound earns a 9/10
Many characters in xxxHolic are familiar arcetypes. Yet even though I'd seen every character's personality and mannerisms before, I hadn't always seen depth in those characters. Specifically the protagonist who, albeit slowly and more towards the end of the series, reveals himself as a person. Meanwhile a relationship forms seamlessly with his mysterious employer, a relationship that by the end of the series becomes a real, and believable bond between the two. Characters are by no means perfect however. A few cross the line from being 'familiar' to full blown cliche, and at times, the main character can be somewhat of a brat. Overall however the cast in xxxHolic carry the story well. An 8/10 for character.
I loved the series from start to finish. The beautiful stories, the sporadic, but no less enjoyable humor, and the overall depth of the show were simply incredible, and a joy to watch. Enjoyment earns a solid 10/10
Overall xxxHolic earns a 9/10 and my eager reccomendation. Beautiful art and stories that range from scary, to hilarious, to proverbial combined with solid characters and sound make this an anime well worth looking into. read more
Jan 12, 2011
The story is basically about a guy called Watanuki who can see spirits and other supernatural things. One day, while he is being chased by a spirit, he finds himself entering a store with no reason. Once he enters, he meets Yuuko, the owner of the store. He finds out that it's not a normal store, but a store that grants wishes for a cost. Watanuki asks Yuuko to get rid of his ability to see spirits, so they can't chase him anymore, but in order to get his wish granted, Watanuki has to start working in the store.
That's basically the main plot. It may not sound as interesting as it is, but in every episode, something new happens. For example, an episode can be about a girl who is always negative about things, or about a girl who always lies, etc. Those persons with problems somehow get to meet Watanuki and you can see how what they do reflects in their lives, and how Watanuki tries to help them. All of this is developed with a paranormal touch, for example being negative can attract negative thing, and stuff like that.
The series is episodic, but really interesting, with every episode bringing something new, and a few 2-episodes arcs here and there which leave you in suspense.
Watanuki and Yuuko aren't the only characters however. Doumeki is Watanuki's friend and he can repel spirits, but he can't see them. Even when he is Watanuki's best friend, Watanuki is always fighting with him. He has a very calm personality, which differs from Watanuki's, and he's very popular with girls.
Himawari is the girl Watanuki likes, and she's a very good friend with Watanuki and Doumeki, but Watanuki doesn't dare confess her his love.
Overall the series is really good. The only thing that people think keeps it from reaching it's full potential is the art style. Something else people complain about is that minor characters just look like shadows, with no face.
Personally I don't really care about the art since the anime is so great and just feels so mystical at times.
The music is also amazing, with some awesome tracks that always make you feel what the anime wants you to feel. Most tracks were good IMO.
In conclusion, this is an awesome anime, don't hesitate to watch it now
Mar 30, 2008
It combines fun and adventures, but it also has an aura of seruisness around every episode.
I never saw an anime that had a better script than this one, and there wasen't even a second that I thought of anything else while watching this anime.
The art isen't the level you would expect for an anime of this rank to be, but even though it lookes kind of chieldish, I would like to see you find an anime that can give such a story with such an atmosphere with this art.
I labeled it as Holy. You should too.
Jun 27, 2012
The story follows a fail of a boy named Watanuki. Pretty much everything he does, he messes up with and is always hunted down by spirits. He is the only one who can see them which makes him look like a fool most of the time when he runs around the town from spirits that seem to not exist. Now here is where some of the inconsistencies that I found. Almost every picture I have seen of him has two different eye colors but yet, the anime has given him both blue eyes. I am not sure exactly which is true but it’s what I’ve seen from the manga, it’s supposed to be the later. (Now that I have read the manga, I found out that it happens after a event.)
Yuuko is an interesting character and from what I’ve seen, they are actually alike between the manga and anime at least in looks. She has a way of getting what she wants with no worry as to what will happen to the other person although I believe she always knows it will work out. I never once saw her worried that something may happen.
If Watanuki wears his emotions on his sleeve, Domeki is the exact opposite. Maybe that’s why they make a great pair. Domeki cancels all of Watanuki’s crazy antics, giving mostly a base monotone as he speaks. I wish he was actually in the show more often and given a bigger role because it was really fun to see the conversation between him and Watanuki (and the idea of them being a yaoi pair makes my fan girl in me scream for joy...)
In fact, all the characters are pretty memorable as main characters except for one. Himawari is a little two plain and cheerful all the time. Sometimes I want to smack her hard because she just gets so annoying. There are many times that Yuko gives cryptic statements about her but it is never explained what is going on with her.
I somewhat understood all that was being said but then some of what they talked about, I felt would only make sense to a Japanese person such as the game ‘Angel’ which seems to be a Japanese version of Ouija Board or Wigi Board. When they first talked about it, I thought that it was something else. Another thing that is bothersome to me is that no one takes her advice, which I understand, some of the reasons for it but then they get into problems and suffer for it and I just have to roll my eyes at it.
The animation is alright but all the characters are much too thin and long limbed which makes it hard to watch sometimes. Even fluid movements would never make the shows good to me. There are many times when the artwork pretty much sucks for an anime, and really makes me wonder. It surprises me that such a low design could come from Clamp. In fact, the fact that there are references to other Clamp manga’s in the show is interesting if you take the time to pick them out. Sadly, the only details with this seem to be in the background except one or two things the characters end up wearing and the characters themselves are poorly lacking in detail and actual proportions with arms and legs going everywhere during freak outs. I also don’t like how their eyes are all blank. They have no high lights what so ever so it makes them look dead.
I really like the English Voice acting, which to me, it’s much better then the Japanese. The English has more fluid movement in fact then the Animation and feels like a cloud of smoke to the ears. At least for most of the things Yoko says. The other actors are pretty good for them going with Shizuka’s monotone to the crazy way Watanuki’s voice gets with some of the things he gets in to. Really I do feel sorry for the boy. The music is also really well done, giving it a really nice mystic feel to it and the opening is rather fun.
This show works a bit better in the manga because it explains so much more.
Jun 2, 2009