Synonyms: Dream Eater Merry
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Jan 7, 2011 to Apr 8, 2011
Duration: 24 min. per episode
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or olderL represents licensing company
Score: 7.171 (scored by 27489 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
2 based on the top anime page.
Popular TagsNo tags found
Sep 22, 2013
Characters: The characters in Yumekui Merry are a mixed bag. Some are vibrant, while many others are less so. Some have unique, emotionally complex personalities. Yet, at the same time, most others have bare bone and single-note personalities. Let’s first start with the good ones (or one I should say). Yumekui Merry succeeds greatly with its main protagonist, Merry Nightmare, who boasts a unique costume design, as well as a fun, vibrant personality that is not only a joy to watch, but emotionally complex at the same time. Her fear of actually killing the “dream demons” instead of sending them back to the dream world brings some depth to the character as well as her interesting relationship with Yumeji. These things (and others) make Merry a very well done character in my opinion. I could go on and on about how great her character is but I sadly must move on to the bad characters. Mistleteinn is a good example. Her role on the show is as one of the main “bad-guys” in Yumekui Merry (more like the secondary antagonist if you will). She is no slouch when it comes to recycling all of those good ol’ cliché bad guy lines every second she appears on the screen. Things like “It will be fun hurting you” and “Do you have a death wish” are just a few of the lines that will induce a cringe when watching. All-in-all, her character is poorly done and kind of seems a little like Harley Quinn’s long lost sister (in a bad way). In fact, all of the other characters are like this in some way! Each one with his/her own set of lazily written lines that can be thrown out at any second and can all but ruin a scene. They’re definitely not the worst I’ve seen, but they are pretty bad characters.
Story: The story, as you probably guessed, is about dreams. However, you won’t find any totems or folding cities in this show. Rather, what you’ll find is an intriguing story about dreams that says that they are this whole other world inhabited by dream beings. This world is rife with good-guys (like Merry) and bad-guys (like Mistleteinn). These beings fight with each other so that people like Merry can save human beings from losing their dreams and being taken over by a dream demon. It’s an interesting premise by all means, but it’s its execution that’s less than perfect. It could just be the bad characters that weigh heavy on the show’s overall enjoyment, but more likely, it’s the cheesiness and predictability. The story has potential, don’t get me wrong, but when the shows predictability is this stupidly prevalent, and when losing your dreams doesn’t seem so bad as the writers want the story to have a happy ending, you know something’s very wrong. It also felt somewhat unfinished at the end, with a wide open space for a second season that doesn’t exist. Yumekui Merry’s story is not all bad though, as it does have its surprise moments that are definitely welcome. But these (which I won’t spoil for you) are few and far between. This and the cheesiness do indeed plague the show, but that doesn’t make the story horrible. In fact, the story is not bad! The problem is that along with the aforementioned problems, the show doesn’t take any risks. It feels as if it never got out of the box and showed me something new. Even with such an interesting and unique premise, Yumekui Merry’s story never seemed to get off its feet and start flying.
Soundtrack: Yumekui Merry’s soundtrack can be put into to two simple letters: O and K. The soundtrack reminds me a lot of The World God Only Knows. Upbeat symphonic music plays in the background as Merry fight’s dream demons. Then, it turns soft when a more sad moment arrives. All with a hint of a soft electronic style that’s just barely noticeable. Sounds great, right! Yet it’s not the sound of the music that makes it OK, it’s the lack of variety. The show’s soundtrack seemed to be repeating itself time and time again! It seemed as though Yumekui Merry’s OST only had three tracks: one for the sadder moments, one for the funny/normal moments, and one for when Marry beats a dream demon. This lack of variety made the songs get somewhat annoying as time went on. Not that the songs are bad, but the lack of them and repeated use of the same songs cripples Yumekui Merry's soundtrack greatly.
Art: The art in Yumekui Merry reflects my opinion of the show: a mixed bag. Sometimes the art was crisp and beautiful. Yet at other times it felt unfinished and lazy. Sometimes characters and backgrounds have a lot of detail in their design, and sometimes there is a need for more detail. The art is by no means bad; in fact, some of the art was absolutely beautiful. It’s the inconsistencies in the art that get on my nerves, if only because most other art in Yumekui Merry is so well done.
Conclusion: Yumekui Merry is an enjoyable show that is plagued with some problems here and there as with any show. However, Yumekui Merry’s problems are ones that, sadly, cannot be overlooked. Look one minute, and you’ll see a unique and beautiful anime with nice characters and a cool premise. However, look again and you’ll see a poorly done, cheesy, and predictable show with a looping soundtrack and some mediocre art. When it’s all said and done, and we weigh the good and bad things about Yumekui Merry, we’ll see the scale read at about a 6 out of 10. read more
Apr 10, 2011
Now, I don't expect anyone was especially thrilled to see another show that used every shounen trope to its fullest extent, with a bland male lead, an unstoppable and infuriating lead villain, and a plucky tsundere sidekick.
The story, which isn't properly divulged in the synopsis, is as such: Yumeji is your standard shounen protagonist with the ability to read peoples' dreams by making a circle with his thumb and index finger. He meets a mysterious and flamboyantly dressed woman while experiencing a trippy dream sequence, and the two build a friendship that withstands any and all obstacles. That's about it.
In the beginning, there's nothing at all wrong with the story. The problem with it is, quite a few plot threads are introduced, toyed with for an episode or two, and never brought up again.
Just a warning, possible spoilers ahead. If you want this to remain as spoiler free as possible, skip down past the dotted line.
The first plot introduced is Yumeji's conflict with a dream demon who wants to use his body as a vessel. Okay, that's a good plot. And the demon can infiltrate his mind at anytime and plunge him into that dream state. Alright, that works. And the girl who he meets in there one day tries to help him out. Okay, excellent. Sounds like a good, semi-compelling series. But nope, a few episodes later it's dropped and only paid lip service less than halfway through, where it's resolved in an incredibly anticlimactic manner. And for the rest of the series, this entire plot is forgotten, which makes the synopsis utterly useless.
Not a problem though, because a second plot is brought up by Merry, the plucky sidekick. She's also a dream demon, but all she wants is to return home to her world, and for that she needs to vanquish a few demons and use the portals that send them back to send herself back. Not nearly as interesting as the first, but it's still serviceable, and would allow for more freedom with character development. And thankfully character does develop... right up until the last third.
Unlike the first, this isn't forgotten, but just completely shoved aside for the standard plot.
The main plot, of course, being the need to vanquish an unstoppable evil through the power of friendship. You all know how this is going to go, so nothing needs explaining.
The story is somewhat redeemed by a twist at about the halfway mark, and another at the two thirds mark, that's somewhat unexpected and casts what Merry does in an entirely new light.
It would've been decent if they had just stuck with the main plot, without introducing all those abandoned subplots.
The characters are, for the most part, bland and uninteresting. Merry's the only one not of a cookie cutter design, but her personality is as standard for tsundere characters as it gets. Really, there's nothing here you haven't seen before. Heroes are likable, if somewhat dimwitted, and the villains are despicable in a way that you like them to be. Again, standard fare.
Sound-wise, Yumekui Merry employs a somewhat catchy OP and a pretty good ED, but otherwise unremarkable music. The characters are usually appropriately voiced. Not much worth mentioning either for or against the music or VAs.
Aside from the boring character designs, I must admit that the art of the various dream worlds used is quite excellent. Each world is haunting and surreal, from a moonlit wheat field swaying gently in the twilight breeze, to a warped town bathed in a bluish-green glow, surrounded by levitating fish skeletons. Otherwise, it gets the job done, and nothing more. The animation is fluid, the fights are fun to watch, and I was never left bored during the action scenes.
Yumekui Merry breaks no ground, preferring to tread water under pseudo-philosophical debates and questionable handling of the story. I understand that 13 episodes limits the schedule somewhat, but if the subplots were going to be underutilized like that, they should've been left on the cutting room floor.
Otherwise, it's more than watchable. Just don't expect to be wowed or walk away having felt richer for the experience. It's stupid, short fun, and sometimes that's what you need in life. read more
May 18, 2011
So what is a dream?
There are those who believe they are nothing more than one's subconscious mind doing a bit of "housecleaning", whilst others claim that there is a supernatural element that can be defined and translated to provide a message to an individual. Many people believe that dreams are simply flights of fancy that occur while one is asleep, and almost everyone has used the term in reference to personal goals. The common misconception though, is that while they are often weird, and maybe a little unnerving (this includes some real life ambitions), they are also harmless. What people tend to forget is that a nightmare is also a dream.
But what happens when dreams and reality merge, and just how important are they to a person?
Based on the manga byYoshitaka Ushiki, Yumekui Merry (Dream Eater Merry), tells the story of Fujiwara Yumeji, a high school student who has the ability to see auras around people that allow him to predict what kind of dream they will have. Unfortunately his own dreams involve him being chased by armed cats, but all of that changes when he meets the mysterious Merry Nightmare.
The story features several interesting dream related elements that offer some food for thought, and while there are a few rather lacklustre attempts at comedy, the series manages to retain a reasonably serious atmosphere. That said, the cliche manner in which the two leads meet does a good job of negating the generally forthright approach to character introductions, and shattering the illusion of seriousness. Granted the two have to meet in some way, but did it really have to be that?
In addition to this the plot contains several typically shounen themes that act as a foundation for development of the story, which is a bit of a shame as while there are some explanations on offer about certain events, there are also a few glaring omissions that can leave viewers wondering how everything fits together. Yumekui Merry also suffers from the fact that all of the action takes place in a particular area, and generally involves people in a particular age range, which immediately raises several questions that are never answered.
The design poses an interesting dichotomy as on the one hand the series adopts a very typical formula with regards to characters and environs, yet on the other there is a degree of imagination and innovation on display, in particular where supernatural characters and otherworldly realms are concerned. While this is obviously a purposeful move to highlight the difference between reality and dreams, J.C. Staff haven't really made the effort to break new ground (and seem overly addicted to Merry's navel), and because of this Yumekui Merry retains a humdrum quality that makes it difficult to take seriously.
As for the animation itself, the series does achieve a very high standard, especially during a few action set pieces, but there's no real consistency to the quality so these high points are more the exception than the norm. There are many scenes where things could have been timed better and movements could have been sharper, so it's somewhat annoying to find that the effort hasn't been made to raise the bar in any way.
The opening sequence features the typical character introduction montage blended with some action that never appears in the anime proper, all against the J-rock/pop stylings of Daydream Syndrome by Fujiwara Marina. That said, the ending theme attempts to keep things simple with a boppy little J-pop track (Dreams And Hopes And The Me Of Tomorrow by Sakura Ayane), set against an image of Merry that is gradually being revealed from underneath flower petals.
Unfortunately one of the biggest problem areas is the background music as there are a number of tracks that don't seem to mesh well with the on screen action or appear to be completely unnecessary. In addition to this there are also issues with the levels, and all too often whatever track is playing will lay the foundations of a veritable cacophony when large audio effects kick in or characters begin speaking loudly. Unfortunately these issues could have been easily rectified during the recording process, so one has to wonder if there has been a poorly executed attempt to enhance the atmosphere of particular scenes, or simply a continuous oversight during production.
That said, there is some decent performances from Okamoto Nobuhito (Fujiwara Yumji), and Sakura Ayane (Merry Nightmare), but this is only in comparison to the rest of the cast. A large portion of the acting is nothing more than lines by rote which can be attributed to a script that's more than a tad juvenile, and this truly is a shame as the cast are a talented bunch for the most part.
Yumekui Merry features a variety of personalities that one might find in any number of highschool anime, yet while there is a certain amount of depth applied to several prominent characters, this never really feels like true development. It seems as though the producers have decided to follow a method that attempts to define the characters rather than make them grow, which is unfortunate as this approach can only really yield good results when there is a decent amount of characterisation from the start.
Sadly, there isn't.
Aside from the generic looks and routine personas, it's only Yumeji who appears to have any sort of detail at the start of the story, and part of that stems from the manner of his introduction into the tale. While one might argue that Merry's introduction also constitutes definition of sorts, nothing substantial is done with her until the latter half of the series. Most of the characters are apportioned a certain amount of screen time to tell a highly abbreviated version of their personal history or future goals, but there's very little emotion involved in this and the story can sometimes feel like more of a writing exercise than anything else.
Even with the flaws there's still something to this anime that manages to raise it from mediocrity, and that's the interesting ideas it can spark about dreams and how important they are to a person. While the explanations of cause and effect are a bit on the simplistic side, they can also be somewhat original and unusual, and this helps to retain the viewer's interest in the story. In addition to this the main thrust of the narrative is well conceived, even if the execution is lacking, and the generally serious tone of the story helps to offset the fact that Yumekui Merry can be a chore from time to time.
One thing that should be pointed out is that the series has a very clear "kids versus adults" mentality that seems more a convenience for its own sake than an outright declaration that everyone over a certain age is "evil", which makes it pretty obvious who the target audience is for this show (as if the highschool wasn't already a dead giveaway). The ending also lacks a degree of substance due to its slightly hurried nature, and many of the concepts in Yumekui Merry aren't fully realised, but given that the manga is ongoing it will be interesting to see where things go from here. While the series barely manages to hold it's own against the likes of Yume Tsukai (which isn't really all that impressive to be honest), there's an earnestness that appears from time to time that really should have been more prominent as it would have offset the lethargic productions values. read more
Feb 19, 2011
"a series of mental images and emotions occurring during sleep"
Pfft.. Don't just give me the definition from the first thing you googled...
Anyways, Yumekui Merry, or "Dream Eater Merry is an anime based on a manga by... Christopher Nolan??? Hah, I wish, but then the story would get more complicated than it is.
In fact, the anime series was directed by Shigeyasu Yamauchi, produced by Hideki Shirane and written by Ushiki Yoshitaka.
Yeah, I know all of you Nolan fanboys (or girls) are going like, "YEAH!! Christopher Nolan was director, producer and writer but the japanese needed 3 guys to make a show about dreams.."
Well my friend, thats a failed analogy to compare movies and animes. I can't believe you just did that... I mean... Seriously??
Before I proceed with the story review, let me clarify with some of you the terms used that may help you understand more about the story (For those who haven't watch)
SPOILER: To those who wish to enjoy the series by figuring out themselves what this anime is all about, please skip the story section.
Dream World: The other dimensions where the habitants consists of mumas.
Mumas = Dream demon who wish to possess human to use them as a vessel. They can either take over their host, or co-exist with them
Day Dream: Is the process where the Mumas extend their territory by
bringing their host or vessel into their domain while they are still conscious
Wet Dream: Nocturnal Emissions a.k.a j**zing in your pants while you sleep.
So I quite like the story because they did not bombard us with the entire plot by the first few episodes. Quite many enjoy this series for their way of slowly letting the audience discover what this anime is all about. And the plot isn't too cliched as well. This is infact the first anime series I've watch in the Spring/Winter 2010/2011 line up that doesn't have a male harem lead character eventhough it clearly have the potential!
However, the story about other dimensions and different creatures with different types of powers living in those dimensions feels all too familiar. So I can't give any points for this one.
Now of course, if this was a dream anime you would expect the art too be all abstract like you dreams right? Well true it does have its charms but I got the feeling that the fighting sequence was getting lazy as the story progressed. I dont know, maybe the animators haven't been getting any good dreams lately. What about sound? Well I dont remember background music playing during my dream session but this anime had their BGM well under wraps.
I especially loved the opening theme song, then I noticed that IOSYS was responsible. Hah, no surprise there..
Characters! Eventhough I only enjoy reviewing harem characters, but I'll make this one an exception. Why? Cause I know you guys love skipping to the character part and ignore every other parts of my review.
Yumeji Fujiwara. Has the awesomest power ever!!! He can detect if a person is going to have a certain dream on that night! Isn't that cool?? And he can even do that to himself as well! That was you can sleep longer when there he detects a wet dream and don't sleep when there is a nightmare..
Ok yeah... So I was trying to make it sound cool but it seems you guys didn't buy it. Oh darn, I was stupid trying to fool otakus whom clearly wish for better powers like the ability to manipulate vectors or something pfft...
Anyways, like any typical japanese anime character, he has a childhood friend who is yet again a GIRL named Isana Tachibana. Seriously Japan? Can anyone in Japan actually confirm this with me that it's so easy to get a childhood friend who is the opposite sex? I mean maybe because I never had one that made me so envious of them. Someone to be a love interest but is gonna get friendzoned anyways.. Sigh..
So Yumeji's been living alone and in no circumstances they told us what happened to his parent or I don't remember because too many male characters are deprived from their parents. He is a lazy, yet strong-willed and determined person with a heart of gold, who is always ready to help others. He is also a member of a writing club at his high school, and is a big fan of the superhero called Sprain? Who sprains himself each time he acts in the name of justice? Wow why would he even become a hero then if it hurts him?? Yumeji meets Merry when she falls on top of him as he comes back from his errands, (You know the typical cliched scene) He has firmly decided to help Merry to come back in the Dreamworld, and eventually becomes her partner, using his ability to scout out nightmares so Merry can hunt them
Now I wont explain much about Merry because that would take the thrill away from discovering what she is for thos who haven't watch the series. Let's just say she enjoys eating doughnuts and playing video games.
"OMFG!! MY DREAM GIRL!!!" Get it? Because she's from a dreamworld? and she's a girl which also means..... Oh c'mon can't a guy tell a lame joke without getting dissed?
Anyways, Merry is your typical female heroine which is quite popular in the anime scene right now.
Wussy guys + Powerful girls = Homosexuals
Wait that ain't right..
The enjoyment in this anime for me was as mentioned above, slowly discovering what the whole story is about. At the same time we see the bond of friendship developed between Yumeji and Merry. There is a possibility of this going into deeper feelings but please, not every anime have to be about love... And since this is based off a seinen manga, kiddies are not recommended to watch this anime. No, Im not saying this because there are sex scenes! What you dont believe me?? Fine go ahead and watch... And prepare for your MIND TO BE BLOWN... Seriously, kids, if you scratched your heads until it bleeds when you watched Inception, I doubt you would enjoy this one. Fighting sequence isn't that impressive but it's still above average and does compliment the anime well
Overall, watching this anime changes my perception of dreams. They're not recollection of memories, they're actually other dimensions and dream creatures are trying to take over our bodies! So those voices I hear in my head are real and Im not crazy! Oh wait, false alarm, that's just me thinking to myself. And it's telling me to click Submit Review without Previewing it first.
Must resist urge.
Resistance Failed. read more
Aug 5, 2012
-= --- Story --- =-
From the producers of Blood + and Dragon ball Z, Yumekui Merry starts with bang. Yumekui Merry is certainly not one of those animes that lags around in the beginning; rather, grabs our attention immediately by giving the protagonist an unexpected disaster from above that ends in a very special acquaintance. All in all, Yumekui Merry narrates the pivot point of the life of Fujiwara Yumeji, who can see the inner atmosphere of the people around him, and can predict the type of dream the person will have that night based on this inner aura. The story pivots sharply as Yumeji meets a strange girl called Merry Nightmare. The story is one of the most original plots that have been made yet, incorporating concepts of that not unlike the movie “Inception”. In addition, the plot goes through many interesting twists that keep us guessing the next turn of the plot.
-= --- Animation --- =-
I found the drawings of Yumekui Merry extremely interesting and contrary to the usual graphics of contemporary anime. Although Yumekui Merry incorporates essentially the same type of portrayal of the outward appearance of characters as other animes, with the same background in the “normal” world, the graphics of scenes in the dream worlds are wholly different. Not only do objects not follow the laws of physics, what we would normally conceive as the effect of one action differs completely from the actual effect that is shown. Despite others who argue that the art of anime is not particularly appetizing to watch, I see it as part of the twists that make Yumekui Merry the attracting anime it is, that’s quickly rising through the board.
-= --- Sound --- =-
The soundtrack of Yumekui Merry is also part of the twist that makes up its personality. One of the aspects is that it defies the basic rule of using clashing dissonance of die-hard rock music and screaming guitars; instead, Yumekui Merry surprisingly chooses to use the romantic building sounds of a group quintet orchestra consisted solely of violins and violas. This effect makes the fight all the more enjoyable. From an unexpected transcribing, the fight shifts its position. As the music builds into more intense chords and arpeggios, the fight climbs to its climax. The experience is particularly exhilarating as the violins play in sync together in a strangely baroque tone to build up the rising action as the fight leads to its climax. I found that other reviewers also criticize the producer for giving the anime such an unfitting soundtrack, but as we will see while watching Yumekui Merry, the experience proves otherwise.
-= --- Character --- =-
There character development is the one weakness of the anime. Although it is clearly marked that a few characters progress and change throughout the anime significantly, the relatively minor characters (not to say that they aren’t important) do not have such a change. Although there exist flat characters, we grow to be fond of the protagonist and cheer them onwards throughout the anime. The protagonist Merry is especially lovable due to her engaging character and her nonchalance and ignorance to everyday things such as video games and groceries. Besides the protagonists, the minor characters, despite that they remain the same throughout the anime, are very interesting. I especially appreciated the character of Takateru Akiyanagi, the boy who constantly expresses his feelings and thoughts as through haiku; this shows an extremely keen sense of creativity that is parallel even to Angel Beat’s T.K.
-= ---Enjoyment --- =-
Yumekui Merry is especially enjoyable. Not only does it make the everyday aspects of school life as interesting as it can be by creating character development, but it also has many enjoyable fighting scenes that gives ecstatic feelings of greatness. As the anime progresses, we will be enthralled by the ever thickening plot as we try to guess the next possible action that the protagonists will take.
-= --- Overall --- =-
Yumekui Merry is an extremely underrated anime, not because it lacks charm and glamour – it has an abundance of those – but very few people know of its existence. Do not be motivated to skip this opportunity of inspiration just because no one recommended it. Yumekui Merry is actually a very interesting anime, and it does not take long to find out.
Reviewer’s note: Thanks you VERY much for reading this especially long review. I purposefully did not add ratings to this review. I feel that reviewer’s ratings never appeal to the reader, and who even cares about how I feel about the anime right? Regardless, I tried to revise this (my second) to create an effective review that will not only encourage the reader to watch Yumekui Merry, but also have a realistic idea of Yumekui Merry. If you did not like this review, please give me advice so that I can improve my horrible writing skills, and write a better review next time.
May 23, 2011
These are the stories of the victims of this show, who are no longer among us to tell them.
Case 1: The Director
Fukuyama, Takumi was an independent film director who enjoyed watching films and anime full of meaning, with well articulated plots and interesting stories.
While looking at the Winter 2011 anime releases, there was one show that captured his attention, Yumekui Merry. He had dreamed about being a director since he was a young teenager and he was actually living his dream, so he felt that he would enjoy a story related to dreams. (Don’t worry about spoilers you won’t find any)
Episode 1: Boy meets supernatural girl, the dream world and Merry are surrounded by a shroud of mystery, Merry cries. Takumi is intrigued.
Episodes 2 – 3: Some side characters are introduced, not much about them is told and they relation with the plot is unclear, bad action scenes, the dreamworld is still a mystery, Merry cries. Takumi feels a little confused and disappointed, yet he pushes through and keeps watching the show, hoping to get some answers.
Episodes 4 – 6: The amount of side characters keeps growing just like the amount of unanswered questions about everything regarding the main plot. Every fiber in Takumi’s body is screaming “Drop this show before it’s too late!”, but he can’t. He feels like it wouldn’t be fair to judge a show that’s halfway through. Takumi notices that he is eating less than he normally does.
Episodes 7 - 8: Baffled by the lack of sense and poorly animated fight scenes, Takumi stood still for 3 days, unconsciously staring at the turned off screen. His body is slowly giving up.
Episodes 9 – 12: Takumi is deranged. He has no regard for personal hygiene anymore, he started peeing in empty bottles and taking dumps in the trash bin. He is starting to run out of bottles and the trash bin is almost full. Only a good final episode can save him now.
Episode 13: After finishing this episode, what was left of Takumi broke. He picked up the trash bin and started writing “It doesn’t make any sense” with feces, in his dining room walls. “I ran out of paint” muttered Takumi as he blankly stared the shit covered walls. “Ah… I have an idea” said with a bitter smile, after thinking for a few seconds.
A week later he was reported missing by one of his coworkers, the police broke into his apartment and found the body of Takumi laying in a pool of his own blood.
It didn’t take much time for the police to find out what had happened. Half of the walls were painted with shit, the other half… With blood.
Case 2: The Prodigy.
Art / Animation: 5
Nanaya Kenichi, was the perfect student. His stern father always pushed him to get straight A, saying that he would not accept to have a son who thinks that it’s not important to be the best That’s why Kenichi had been getting nothing but A in every subject for all his life, even in “Art and Expression” which was the hardest one for him.
One day he received an assignment in that subject that got him worried. “Present an animation about anything you want”. Certainly creativity wasn’t one if his virtues, he had great memory but low inventive.
He resorted to the Winter 2011 anime releases list to get inspiration, and decided to try his luck with “Yumekui Merry” since it had two interesting designed characters in the promotional image.
“Hmm, so this is how you do it” thought Kenichi after finishing the whole thing. He immediately started his animation, brimming with enthusiasm and confidence.
The next day he presented his animation in class. Link vs Megaman: Link and Megaman fight over the last “six-pack” at the Wallmart.
Kenichi got an “F”. But it wasn’t the ridiculous plot the issue, it’s just that he drew Megaman and Link in great detail while they were standing still, and then drew them all disfigured and half-assed while moving / fighting. Just as he had learned from watching Yumekui Merry.
Needless to say, his father didn’t take the news too well. Kenichi was kicked out of his own house and had to live in an orphanage. There, he was constantly bullied and eventually raped by his fellow orphans and wardens.
One night that Kenichi was crying his hearth out with his head buried in his pillow, he heard the gentle voice of a girl. “Come” said the voice, “Kenichi, come”, insisted.
Kenichi rose his head and saw Merry standing by the door and calling out to him. Dumb footed he stood up and quietly followed Merry to the orphanage rooftop.
“I need to tell you a secret, a very important secret” said Merry, standing at the edge of the 5 stories orphanage rooftop.
“What is it?” replied Kenichi, half curious, half scared about the answer.
“I need you to get closer, or else I can’t tell you” said Merry with a gentle smile.
“No, it’s dangerous… This is too weird, I’m going back to bed”. Said Kenichi as he turned around and headed for the door.
“Don’t you miss your old life Kenichi?, if you listen to what I have to say, you will get your life back. Your family, your home, even your dog”
Kenichi froze, he couldn’t take another step away from her. Instead, he slowly started walking towards her, as if someone else was moving his body.
When he was about to reach Merry, he tripped and fell over the edge, a cracking noise resounded in the orphanage on that silent winter night, Kenichi broke his neck as soon as he hit the ground and died instantly.
A warden came investigating the source of the noise. He found Kenichi’s dead body, and in his hands a drawing of a curious looking girl, the draw was titled “Merry”.
Case 3: The Dreamer
Character / Character Development: 3
Watanabe Hiroshi, 32 years old, married for 8 years and father of two. He had dreamed of being a mangaka when he was younger, he even came up with a pen-name: “Watahiro”. But life isn’t a fairy tale, soon financial pressure made him give up on his dream and take whatever job he could get, in order to support his family.
After 8 years working in the dull and meaningless job of selling insurance policies, he found an advertise of an important manga publisher that would change his life forever. “Manga contest: Wining prize 800.000 YEN (roughly under 10.000 USD) and a contract for 5 years”.
“This must be destiny”, thought Hiroshi. He knew that if he wanted to win, he would need to make something new, something fresh. The contest deadline was close so he didn’t had enough time to resort to manga for inspiration. Anime seemed like the most reasonable choice.
He had not watched any anime since 2003 so he needed to watch a new show to get a feeling of current trends. “This one looks interesting” said Hiroshi while reading Yumekui Merry synopsis.
After watching the entire show he secretly started working on his manga, based on what he had learned from Yumekui Merry. Working during the day and hiding the manga production from his family was extremely tiring. Hideoshi realized that he wouldn’t finish on time unless he could find more time to work on his manga. So he took a decision.
Hideoshi left his job and keep it a secret from his family. Everyday he would bathe and change for work, then he would go to a park near his former workplace, where he would draw, and return home by the time he would return from his job.
“They won’t understand if I tell them now. It’s for the best, once I win the contest I can explain, and finally do what I love for living. Yes everything will be ok”, said Hideoshi with a smile, while drawing at the park.
After a month of hard work he barely finished his manga the day of the deadline. He proudly sent it to the publishing house, and returned home full of expectation.
Intense traffic caused him to return 2 hours later than usual, when the family is having dinner. But to his surprise the house was empty. Worriedly he scouted the rooms, looking for any clues of his family location. “Maybe something happened to one of the kids and they had to rush to the hospital”, thought Hiroshi.
Eventually he went to the kitchen, where he found a letter that had been written by his wife that same day. The letter contents were as follows: “Today I used the credit card and it was rejected. I called to your job to talk to you about it and they told me you have quitted last month and they haven’t seen you since then.
You have been lying to me and your children for the past month, without even blinking. I don’t even care about what you have been doing until today, it’s inexcusable and unforgivable. I’ve taken the kids with me, I have already told the kids that you are dead, don’t try look for us or I swear I’ll kill you.
I’ll send you the divorce papers once I’ve settled down.”
Hiroshi cried for several days, but the possibility of wining the manga contest finally soothed him. “That’s right, after I win the contest I’ll get my family back. I’m sure I can explain it somehow. She must probably think I was having an affair or something, that’s why she got so mad.”
The days went by and the expected letter from the contest didn’t arrive, after countless days of waiting Hiroshi picked up the phone to call the publishing house but he had no line. “What?, I’ve paid last month, this is outrageous. He tried to turn on the computer but it didn’t respond. “Maybe there is no power… No it can’t be that, the lights in the kitchen and living room are on. It must be broken.”. Hiroshi checked his watch “eight o’clock, I guess I’ll be going to sleep early today.”.
The next day he woke up and checked the mail. “Still nothing” said disappointed, “well, the day is just starting, they can still deliver it in the afternoon. What time is it anyway?”. When he looked at his watch, a chill went down Hiroshi’s spine. “8:00 PM?... no this can’t be right I can’t have slept for 24 hours. My watch have stopped, that must be it.” after confirming that his watch had stopped, Hiroshi stepped outside the house to ask someone the time.
“How weird it’s already nighttime, I wonder what time it really is”, thought while walking. After a long walk he couldn’t find anybody, everywhere was deserted. After a while of aimlessly walking around the neighborhood, he returned home disturbed about the lack of people.
In front of his house, there stood a girl with a white dress; she had an air of purity.
“Finally someone!, do you know where is everybody?”, asked Hiroshi worriedly.
“Everybody is here, you just can’t see them”, answered the girl in a calm voice.
“What do you mean?... But why can’t I see them?”, as he asked, deep inside he felt like he already knew the answer to his question.
“Because you are dead” said the girl.
“You are lying that’s just stupid, I can’t be dead im standing right here”, he acted like he brushed away her answer, but somehow he felt very uneasy
“When was the last time you ate breakfast?. When was the last time you taked with anybody?. When was the last time you used the phone?”. The girl kept asking questions that would have been easy to answer by anyone, but for some reason Hiroshi couldn’t find the answer to any of those questions.
“I.. I… no this can’t be” said while covering his ears with his hands as if to “unhear” what he had just heard.
“Enter your house, you will find the truth inside” said the girl.
Hiroshi stepped into his house. The house looked nothing like how it was when he left a few hours ago. It looked like it had been abandoned for a while, the mailbox was full and a strong smell could be perceived. As he entered the living room he couldn’t believe his eyes.
He saw his dead body, in a sitting position with his back against the wall. Over the table there were two letters, one was the letter his wife had left, and the other was from the publisher. The letter from the publisher said: Mister Watanabe, we regret to tell you that your manga didn’t win the contest. The reason is that you introduced too many characters to the story, without giving the audience proper background to understand their behavior and make their motivations clear. Ultimately you could have resorted to pander the audience fetishes, but you didn’t even do that. You just had a bunch of random characters, doing unrelated events for entertainment sake. And it actually wasn’t entertaining at all. Just like that “Yumekui Merry” crappy show. Better luck next time.”
After he finished reading the letter, the girl stepped into the room.
“How did I die?”
“You thought the letter was a prank, and that the real one would eventually come. So you sit there waiting for a month until you starved to death. Your desire to receive that letter was so strong that your spirit neglected your death. And since then you have wandered this house oblivious of what happened.
But yesterday when you found certain inconsistencies yesterday the phone and the computer you started to get aware of your situation, and deep in your heart accepted it. That’s why I came, because I heard your calling.”
“For how long…?” he couldn’t even finish the sentence.
“I see…. And now what?”
“Now we go, I’ll take you to where you belong now”
Resigned, Hiroshi took the girl’s hand and they disappeared into a white light.
So heed my advise. If you don’t want to experience a “Merry Incident” stay the fuck away from this show. I specially recommend people who have read the manga to stay the fucking fuck away from this, couse the original story gets butchered and anal-fisted in the anime. Courtesy of your usual J.C Staff “Story Re-Write”.
Seriously, this anime is pointless. Watch something else, It’s for your own good. read more
May 8, 2011
Animation wise, Yumekui Merry had an interesting approach during the dream segments for the first few episodes. I was really intrigued. The watercolor approach worked well for the series and the character designs were charming. The show was full of stills (meaning no movement or very minimal amounts kind of like a slideshow), but hey they were at least pretty stills. Sort of. Then the art lost all its style at the end. Gone were the interesting art choices and the art became inconsistent during the last few episodes. Misty’s face during the last episode comes to mind.
The OP/ED were good. The ED animations were nice. It had some dang midriff. I like me some midriff. The soundtrack was glaring. It was an awful strange choice to choose orchestra music for the more intense fight scenes. I don’t know... it felt really out of place. I mean come on. Why would you put bassoons in a fight scene? The voice acting was okay. Nothing to complain there. Merry's VA is totally new and it was her debut role. And Okamoto Nobuhiko always makes me go crazy as Yumeji. (Okamoto is personally one of my favorite voice actors, so I'm biased.)
The plot is where everything falls apart though. You’re lead into the first episode with a dream demon who can survive in the human world. Wonderful. Our main character has the power to see what people will be dreaming the next night by making a circle with his fingers. Uh weird, but uh interesting. Throughout the first half it was really formulaic. I mean it was basically fight dream demons and send them back to the dreammmm world. It gets boring. So the anime studio then decides that during the second half the plot gets more of a direction, but loses all plans to keep a coherent plot. The ending was awful. Things are developed, but never really mentioned again. Kawanami's character, John Doe, and that one dude that got possessed by a dream demon. And some nonsensical things happen as well. (Yui playing her invisible trumpet comes to mind. What the heck? Why? Did she bump her head? Did she suddenly decide that she was in a band? Is she the one playing the dang bassoon. Dang it Yui. Dang it.)
Mistletine was a good evil villain. Her back story was basically that she likes to be evil and does evil things. Alright, that’s fine. There’s just one thing I have on her. And that is that Misty (Mistletine) has a severe case of ADD. She's fighting the heroes of the anime and then she just gets up and leaves them, so she can enjoy them next episode? What? Why? That makes no sense? Did she get bored? Did she get tired? No, it looked like she had enough energy to insult them. Why? Oh yeah. It’s not the last episode. We can’t have you guys finish each other off till the last episode. Silly me. That’s a perfectly reasonable answer.
Also the teacher (Who I can’t remember his name for some reason. And all I remember about him was that he wears the ugliest striped pants I’ve ever seen.) was kind of bleh. I do like his facially expressions though. They were hawt. Kawanami was the worst character in the series. She felt soooo tacked on. Was her only purpose in the story was so Isana could make friends? Isana has plenty of friends. She has Merry and she has her brother. Well, I guess that isn't much, but still. Kawanami was an anime-original character (same with stripped pants sensei and Misty) but she felt like she had no purpose in the plot. JCSTAFF WE NEED SOME FOCUS IF YOU ARE GOING TO INTRODUCE ANIME-ORIGINAL CHARACTERS.
I mean having an anime-original plot is fine if you do a good job with it. Having anime-original character is fine if you develop them well, but JCStaff didn't. Did JCStaff suddenly decide that the manga wasn’t good enough? If it wasn’t good enough, then why did they choose to adapt this series? I like John Doe. (John Doooooo) I seriously do. I like his name. I especially love how the other characters call him John Dooooo when his named is spelled John Doe. He was cool. Too bad he like totally disappeared, so the anime-original characters can appear.
I feel like there is so much wasted potential here, plot holes, useless anime-original characters, inconsistent art, and Yui playing her imaginary trumpet. I do feel that there are a few good parts in this show, but there are far too few in a sea of bleh. As in my case it’s very hard to recommend this anime. It might be good, maybe, after in taking some alcohol. But whatever. It’s done. JCStaff please do a good job on your next series. I don’t want to see no anime-original characters or plot, unless you can develop them properly, and I definitely don’t want to see your next main character play an imaginary trumpet.
* Nothing is as frustrating as writing a review twice; due to my laptop crashing down right when I click submit. Review is also on AnimeNfo.com read more
Apr 8, 2011
The anime starts off with our main protagonist, Yumeji Fujiwara who meets a strange girl, Merry who has lost her memory and somehow has ended up in the Reality world. Yumeji decides to help Merry get back to the dream world and along the way they fight other dream demons in Day dreams to protect the dreams of others.
There is more to the story than what I just wrote but that was just a quick summary. The main idea of the series is dreams. The idea that the anime is based off of is brilliant it's really pretty intriguing. However the one big problem with the story is it's pacing. The anime is really rushed and really the series should have been longer. Also mid-way through the anime, it strayed off from the manga. The story would have been much better if it followed the manga. However at that point I don't think there was enough material to make an anime adaption so instead the producers decided to add their own little story in. If they would've waited for more material to come out, this would have been a great anime. So in nutshell the premise was great but the execution was poor and the manga simply wasn't ready to become an anime at the point.
The characters, on the other hand were pretty well done. They were likable and most played roles in the story instead of fading to the background. There were some characters that were not necessary in the anime but other than that I have no complaints.
Our main protagonist Yumeji Fujiwara really has an indomitable will and is willing to help anybody. Although he is weak, he is certainly no coward. He is pretty likable and for a protagonist he certainly is not a bad one
Then we have our main heroine Merry. Unlike most female leads, she is not a tsundere which is refreshing. In fact she is like an opposite because she is often willing to open up to Yumeji and share her feelings. As the anime progresses she undergoes some development. Also she is a very likable and memorable character.
Also there is also Yumeji's childhood friend, Isana Tachibana, who has no idea what is actually going on. She also doesn't play a major role until the end. She also doesn't get a whole lot of screen time either so there's really nothing much I can say about her
There are a number of side characters such as Yui, her dream demon Engi Threepiece, Chizuru and her dream demon Leon(the latter two do not exist in the manga). They are pretty good side characters as they all play roles in the story. Also the villains are also done pretty well as they act like villains and also because they are characters that have a personality that you would hate.
The animation was pretty good, the dream world had it's charm and I would say the animation seemed up to par with other anime today. However during the fights they got lazy; they were short, dull and felt pretty underwhelming.
The sound was alright. The opening and the ending were catchy and the voice actors all fit their roles. Nothing really caught my attention though.
As for enjoyment, it does offer some entertainment. It's not something that is memorable but as far as entertainment, it does an okay job as it is a pretty good time waster.
Overall I expected something way better from J.C. Staff. The anime is okay but it had the potential to become much more. Yumekui Merry is another case of an anime that should have just followed the manga (and waited for it to be ready).
Dec 13, 2011
Dreameater Merry started out, to me, immensely promising, with a cute heroin, a down to earth leading male, and cute girl characters throughout along with a dreamworld plot that I have always taken interest in. It introduces Merry, who is trying to get back to her world in any way she can, her way being defeating monsters from her world that come the real world and try to follow them back. The story progresses from that...kinda. The initial plot sounds great, and the first couple episodes had me. Then, I kept watching, and basically got a metaphorical fan-kick to the balls. I felt like I was watching 11 Eyes all over again. The pacing had picked up to a point where feeling rushed is an understatement, and it kinda felt like when your on the freeway and your gas pedal sticks. Your trying to figure out whats wrong and trying to stop it, but by the time you do, you crash to an unhappy ending (for the viewer).
The art was inconsistent, but at points I was actually quite impressed. It actually looked like it had a large production value at some parts, but then it would die down into what I like to call "filler art" mode, and merely makes it good enough to put on the air.
With the OP as good as it was, and I'm saying that with a ton of respect, the rest of the soundtrack barely kept my interest past the first couple of episodes. At first, with the bells in the first episode, I was quite excited, only to be let down.
Characters were plentiful, but lacked...well, character. There was alot of characters to work with, but all of their personalities are either boring or unoriginal (the only exception I could find would be Mistletine and John Doe).
Its hard to enjoy when everything else is so wrong. Needless to say, I was disappointed overall with this anime and wouldn't personally recommend it. However, if what I said you don't believe, go ahead and watch. But you have been warned. read more
Jun 8, 2012
The general concept of the show was intriguing to me at first, but soon lost its luster. A boy who, by some unexplained phlebotinum, is able to see and predict peoples dreams through ... Polkadots...? Yup, Polkadots. It's pretty silly, I know. But anyways, said boy, Yumeji Fujiwara, can see peoples dreams. After bumping in to the series' female protagonist (Which is truly a terrible way to introduce the two main characters. Falling out of a tree? Really?), a dream demon who has no recollection of how she arrived in the human world and only seeks to return to her dream world. After a run-in with the awesome cat-master dream demon, The Chaser, the two decide to team up in order to hunt down dream demons and try to help Merry return home.
All of this is essentially forgone after a while. I completely forgot that Yumeji could see dreams, or the significance it had in the plot in the first place. Dream Eater Merry's concepts were intriguing and at time thought provoking, but the story itself was quite dull.
Now on to the animation. I quite liked the animation and art, everything looked well rendered, the characters were designed nicely albeit generically (I can't put my finger on it, but Yumeji looks so familiar I was scouring my list of watched anime looking for who it was he looked like). In the first few episodes, 2D and 3D are quite well integrated (But the makers must have completely forgotten that they could do that sort of thing later in the series) and the way that the art changes between the real world and dream worlds was refreshing.
However, come an action sequence, the animation left something to be desired. One fight in particular looked so bad I wanted to avert my eyes. The art isn't terrible however, it's just a bit of a mixed bag. The stuff done right was really nice, but some of the art and animation was just plain bad. There were some small touches in the art however that I quite liked, such as the wall-art hanging in Yumeji's room or Isana's weird fishy paintings.
On to something terrible; the sound. The sound was likely the worst thing about Dream Eater Merry. One track in particular sounded like it was taken directly out of a porno. The background music is often times too loud and just doesn't fit the mood that a scene is striving to achieve, effectively dampening the impact the scene could have had. The opening is pretty mediocre, played to a very shounen opening sequence. I honestly could never make it through the end theme, but I could say that about most anime.
Regarding the voicing, all of the VA's did a respectable job with their characters. Blake Shephard makes a good lead, and Hilary Haag does a respectable job as Merry Nightmare (Yup, I watched it dubbed). All of the characters, for the most part, receive a suitable voice, but none in particular strive to bring the material over the top, leaving the work just about average. It's better than a lot of dubs I've heard, that's for sure.
The characters consist of a classic bunch of terribly generic personalities and quirks, but I can't really fault it for that. Given the variety of characters one would expect a fair ammount of development from at least some of the main characters. Much to my chagrin, there wasn't much at all. I can't really think of a character that grew even the slightest, or even a character, other than perhaps Yumeji, that was given an adequate amount of background or characterization.
There is an attempt at romance made between two of the more minor characters, but I would hardly call that development. Actually, the romance between the two supporting characters feels incredibly forced and tacked on. The minor characters are given a very finite time frame to show us a summary of their past and of their 'dreams', a word that is thrown around so much in this show that I forgot what it meant.
I just want to add that I hated the ending. I hated the ending so much that it forced me to write this, my first review. Through the power of heart, something I dread, and the 'throw yourself at the problem until it's resolved' mentality, the big-bad is defeated. It was an awfully contrived ending that will leave you saying “Dafuq?”. Of the three potential antagonists, 1 is dealt with and the other two are completely forgotten. I finished episode 11 and thought to myself “How will they wrap up this series' loose ends with so little time left?”. The answer is simply “We won't!”, the loose ends are swept under the rug, and the creators are hoping that no one sees the obvious. Things are completely ignored, there is absolutely no sense of closure, and from what I heard, it is unlikely to receive a sequel due to story deviation from the original material.
Reading what I have just wrote makes me sound like I hate Dream Eater Merry. That couldn't be any more wrong. This series has so many flaws, yet somehow I was left wanting more. By some miraculous twist of fate, Dream Eater Merry transcends mediocrity to actually be pretty good. That being said, I thoroughly enjoyed the series and would welcome a sequel if ever they find a way to make that happen.
All in all, I wouldn't spring to buy Dream Eater Merry, but I would definitely watch it.
I would like to give Dream Eater Merry a 6.5, but I'm rounding up.
7/10 read more
May 1, 2011
____|| STORY ||____ ~~ 7/10 ~~ (good)
The story could've been better. Fujiwara, soon after meeting Yumekui Merry, decides to team up with her to hunt down dream demons that uses humans as their vessels and find a way for Yumekui Merry to return to the Dream world as she states that she doesn't belong in Fujikawa's world; reality. Along the pair's journey, they meet foes who soon after become friends, mysteries of the mysterious Yumekui Merry are revealed and the relationship of both dream and reality are gradually conveyed to the point to be fully understood.
The execution of the story was pretty good. It was straight to the point and we get a gist of what the anime will be about.
Though, the story wasn't as intriguing as I thought It would be. First of all, the pace of the
story was too quick. Everything felt rushed and it didn't allow enough time for certain parts of the plot to be given greater depth to fully understand. What happens to the humans that dream demon choose as their vessels? If the dream demon within a human vessel is killed, will the human die along with it? No, only their dreams are killed. Is it true? I'm not so sure. I do not remember hearing such an answer to this crucial part of the story. It was like the question was left unanswered. But what made me falter over this negative talk is the way the series ended. The anime was left unfinished. It does suggest a second season because the Lord of all Dream Demons or whatever his name is has not been defeated yet and it is possible that the second season holds the remaining pieces to this unfinished puzzle to fully get the picture we are
___|| ANIMATION ||___ ~~ 7/10 ~~ (good)
The animation was also a bit a of disappointment. Don't get me wrong. There were actually fight scenes that definitely deserved a 10/10 but then there were others that just didn't live up to the great action sequence I saw in the first episode. The animation, in short, was very inconsistent. From great animation to what looks like punching and kicking plastic mannequins. Only the first two big battles deserved a 10/10. The first is a fight between Yumekui Merry and John Doe (awesome looking humanoid cat with a saw) which takes place in episode one. The other is a battle between Yumekui Merry and Engi (A white female angel knight) which takes place in a later episode. These two battle had very fluid action sequence and very smooth. Had
great dynamics on ground and in air and camera angles and trailing were put to great use in these battles.
Those battles were great to watch and fun to follow. Unfortunately, as the episodes keep on coming, the animation quality was degrading. The last battle of this series, a battle between Yumekui Merry and Mistletine (one of the strongest demons), was suppose to be epic but it ended as a disappointment.
Camera techniques and aerial dynamics were overused and it just made the fight sequence a mess and very hard to follow. You see hands and a second later you see a face charging right at the screen. Very hard to follow. There was also this part when Yumeji Fujikawa was sent flying and then all of a sudden, fell unnaturally; defying physics. It's like cardboard falling flat onto the ground and you're just watching it.
Overall the animation was decent and bearable.
The art was pretty good. Comination of the chosen colours has made the anime eccentric, eerie and surprisingly dream-like. Not the white fluffy heaven feeling but more of the twilight abstract kind.
_____|| SOUND ||_____ ~~ 8/10 ~~
Hmm hmmm! Great opening theme song and the ending theme too. Opening theme animation was a plus and the ending theme animation was... Well, it's just a picture of Yumekui Merry covered by red petals that slowly float away and the credits move down the screen. OSTs were fine but then there were some situations especially a build up to a fight where there's nothing playing at all. "Where did the music go?! Oh, now it starts..."
___|| CHARACTER ||___ ~~ 6/10 ~~
Characters, I've gotta admit, were a little plain. Their personalities may look explosive but their
'unique-ness' from each other weren't so great. The characters did not stand out much as a whole and as individuals and character development could only be a big as 'a change of heart'. Some of the dialogue given to characters turned out to be 'cheezy' and 'lame'. Lame? well, I've heard the same kind of things characters say when there is a sudden burst of courage. It was embarrassing to listen to and you'll be like "I get it! I get it! Just fight or change the subject already..." You could even say their "crucial" dialogues are centralised around 'hope'. Yep! That is a bit too cliched.
Though, the comical relief among the characters were on the plus side. But sometimes there are comical situations where I just sit there with a blank face and go "huh?!..."
___|| ENJOYMENT ||___ ~~ 7/10 ~~
The enjoyment factor. Well, the anime wasn't great nor was it bad. It was in between; good. I did feel that I wasted my time on this but then I enjoyed it a bit as well.
These kind of anime are easy to recommend xD
If you're looking for an anime to endulge yourself in, then, it would be wise to stay away from this anime and go for something better like Baccano or whatever other great titles there are out there.
Overall this anime is just a decent watch to keep yourself busy and kill spare time when you're bored. read more
Apr 14, 2011
Personally, I loved the art, and one thing that really stood out were the shapes/colors of the dream demons' eyes. The characters all had a certain vibe to them, and I think they did a good job synchronizing all of these personas together with the colors/shapes/flow of their animation. There is a lot of variant colors used in this anime, and I'm just a sucker for a full wheel of color wonderland.
As far as the plot goes, it's pretty fair. It doesn't do much to actually grab your attention, but the way they went about it really wasn't all that bad.
Definitely a good anime to watch in between your other ones as a filler in itself. I also appreciated the non-ecchi feel to it. They don't go out of the way to go and show panty shots and all that.
As far as the music goes, this department was pretty lacking. It was ok, I sort of wished they had put more effort into that, but maybe they'll pay closer attention if they get a next season (which they probably will if all goes well, because they left a lot out). I did like the intro, though. The animation/music was perfect. Outro was rather bland and I pretty much skipped it each time.
The characters do develop a bit, but overall it was pretty slow. I don't know, this didn't really grab me.
So, overall, it's a good anime sustenance, and the art is awesome.
(this is my first review, so I hope it helped!) read more
Jun 27, 2011
Apr 10, 2011
Yumekui Merry is a highly fan-catering show that is not using pantsu or nude to sell. In fact, it has none of that. Instead it goes for more indirect eye-catching techniques such as moe girls, bishonens, a childhood female friend, dreams and hopes, and a lot of other otaku stuff. As far as looks go, it does a great job at making you go wander in some fairyland where everything is ideal. On the other hand, it has some of the most dreadful story-writing I have encountered in the past decade. I was literally falling asleep while watching the slow plot, unexplained motives, vague objective, chopped motion scenes, and a general lack of focus. What was this show about anyway?
Its major problem is not inspiring motivation to the viewer. You are literally not given a reason to watch this show; it is all one big blur, like you just woke up and have no idea of where you are or what you are doing. Its very atmosphere is empty of actual tension and you end up watching like a mindless zombie at a screen where stuff happen for the sake of happening.
ART SECTION: 7/10
Analysis: General Artwork 2/2, Character Figures 1/2, Backgrounds 2/2, Animation 1/2, Visual Effects 1/2
On paper, the show looks great as it has a huge variety in locations, each one with very distinctive artwork and colors. It feels like a huge picture book full of fairy tales and it’s really dreamy while staring at the pretty pictures. The characters are all drawn to be moe, with accompanying uniforms and so you end up looking at them as well just for that. Beyond that, they don’t look special or memorable; in fact they are quite stereotypical. Merry is the only distinctive character amongst them; all the rest are generic stock characters when it comes to looks. The animation kind of ruins it too because there is good motion only in battles and everywhere else it seems everybody is frozen or moving in a tired, sleepy way. You see someone running for example and it is not exciting but boring. The visual effects are also poor because they are noting but simplistic filters or light rays. They also fail to excite you with what is happening.
SOUND SECTION: 7/10
Analysis: Voice Acting 2/3, Music Themes 2/4, Sound Effects 3/3 [/b]
The voice actors did a good job in making the characters sound perky but that didn’t help the mostly aimless dialogues to become any better. The script felt terrible; 90% of everything they were saying had no life in it or it was random things they were saying without a proper line of thought. The OST is nothing special, just some rather sad tunes I forgot after a few days. The BGM and sound effects are definitely great for maintaining the atmosphere of the show at the sleepy dream state you are supposed to have while watching it.
STORY SECTION: 7/10
Analysis: Premise 2/2, Pacing 0/2, Complexity 2/2, Plausibility 2/2, Conclusion 1/2 [/b]
The story is interesting on paper. It has to do with creatures from the world of dreams trying to get into reality by possessing humans. The lead male, Yumeji, has the ability to predict the dreams of other people and uses that to save them from bad dream demons and also to help Merry, a girl from dreamworld, to find a way to return there. It is not that simple as there are many sub-stories about demons who just want to help their human hosts by being inside them, plus there are many different reasons each one of them wants to come into reality in the first place. The problem is in the way the story is told; it feels completely boring. Not only it is slow, it also seems to lack excitement. How about the whole setting where Yumeji has a female close friend who grew up with him and meeting Merry when she drops on him out of the blue before she saves him from a daydream that came out of nowhere? There even is a generic beach episode thrown in here. All that are generic stereotypes and tropes you can find everywhere and which take away a lot of novelty from the otherwise interesting subject. Most events seem to play out as stand alone missions and everything lacks the much needed motivation to keep being interested. Stuff happen for the sake of happening, many events feel minor and pointless, and you are left to wonder if you should even care to keep paying attention. The show does eventually explain all that and gives motivations to its characters, but even then the dialogues are so dried up and lifeless, you just don’t care.
CHARACTER SECTION: 4/10
Analysis: Presence 0/2, Personality 1/2, Backdrop 1/2, Development 1/2, Catharsis 1/2 [/b]
Despite the moe looks everybody has, they are still based on archetypes that make them feel generic in the longrun. Except for Merry, chances are you will forget their appearances in a few months. In a similar way, although they all have personality which is looked upon and leads to development and a form of catharsis after each battle, the whole thing plays out in such a terribly boring and sloppy way that all that go to waste. For example, what is good about Yumeji? Isn’t he the archetypical shonen lead with a super power who wants to protect his friends from demons? What does he have that makes him any different than the rest? How about Merry, for whom all her history is just that she has amnesia and wants to go back in dreamworld? This is barely the minimum to begin your main characters. Eventually they do mature further than that but even then it happens very artificially and predictably to care.
VALUE SECTION: 3/10
Analysis: Historical Value 0/3, Rewatchability 1/3, Memorability 2/4 [/b]
It has nothing much to deserve a second view and it will be barely remembered for any special reason, but its dream-like atmosphere makes it rather special on its own. Too bad it’s not the only one with such features.
ENJOYMENT SECTION: 2/10
Hey, I used the words lifeless and boring so many times, I don’t even need to explain this part.
The dreamy visuals and the interesting concept of the story are the only things that maintain this show at average status. All the rest could have played out great as well but they ended up being … you know. In case you wonder what I consider lively and interesting, I direct you to Satoshi Con’s Paprika movie, which also deals with dreams. As for the whole tripy feeling of the show, most SHAFT series have done a similar job. Madoka Magica feels pretty close too and it also aired at the same time as this show. read more
Jul 20, 2011
Dreams are always a cool thing to think about? What purpose do they server? In this world, due to somebody's interference demons are giving humans nightmares, and possessing them. In many ways the setting is incredibly done, and there is a lot of backstory that makes it seems as if there is a lot of depth. However, this adaption obviously is too soon, as little of this story is explored at all. Half way through we reach the end of the introduction as supporting cast is introduced, and then we stop for the filler to follow.
This is an action show. The reason why the director apologized is because this was the fatal flaw. The fights are incredibly slow, and the camera angles are horrible. I proclaim myself king of the oblivious, but even I could tell that the action in this show was so bad I could have clawed my eyes out. Merry is suppose to kick the demons ass "Dream eatter Merry" is the title after, as she saves people from the nightmare giving demons. However, no matter what is really happening because of the animation it is hard to enjoy any of it.
The characters have a good amount of backstory… If you pick up the manga. We get to see that Merry is pretty mysterious even to the demons, but we never figure out why. Yumeji stays weak, not useless thankfully, and although he is a cool character we don't learn anything about him either. John Doe, who appears twice in the story is also an interesting character that is unexplored.
Yumekui Merry isn't a bad show, considering I hand out scores a lot lower. It just could have been much better than it turned out to be. If your interested I would recommend just starting off with the manga, which I picked up and enjoyed much more. read more
Dec 24, 2012
Yumekui Merry, or Dream Eater Merry, is an anime that brings so much to the table, then drops it flat on its head. There was a lot of potential for true greatness here, and I feel like a lot of it went to waste. One main character can see into peoples' dreams, and the other fights off nightmares to save them from losing their emotions entirely. The story is, at least, quite good, and is the main reason you'll want to keep watching; it makes you think, at least, about the potential possibilities for all of the characters, even the ones that aren't very important, which is kind of a good thing.
The artwork and direction are a mixed bag. You'll get some fantastic animation during the fight scenes, and some horrifyingly cheesy direction at some other points. The environments always have a foreboding, dreary sense about them, so much so that it serves the story a little too well and actually distracts from some notes that were meant to be a whole lot more light-hearted. You'll find this a lot in Yumekui Merry, so if your patience doesn't serve you well through the first episode, you're probably not going to fall in love with the series.
The sound work would be decent for something with a smaller budget. Some pretty good BGM and interesting enough voice acting are enough to keep you interested, but not devoted and intent on reading into every word. Ultimately, the voice acting ends up being a little stale at points where it needs to be livelier, which can tear the anime apart from the inside out where it needs to be tighter. Yumeji, the male protagonist, in particular, is really flat for someone who's got so much craziness going on in his life, and even more so for someone who is implied to have a romantic relationship with the main heroine. It all just becomes hard to believe and doesn't take itself seriously at all.
Characters are a redeeming factor here, thankfully. Even if they sound a little flat and emotionless sometimes, it's hard not to remember Merry's signature look. The design looks like a collision of Kingdom Hearts, Soul Eater and Jet Set Radio, if you had to animate it, which leaves a fine lasting impression. However, it's very easy to rely on these characters to hold the whole series together as a result. This leads to a bittersweet conclusion that I felt was inadequate for the time and effort it spent building up to the final moments of the show.
I wouldn't recommend this. Ultimately this series has a lot of redeeming factors that could save it, if the other ones didn't constantly get in the way and seemingly purposefully set us up to knock us down. The end result is broken and muddied, and it's not pretty in the least. read more
Oct 14, 2012
We've got a pretty interesting bunch of characters... surprisingly, several of the supporting roles have quite a bit of stage time and importance rather than an honorable mention. For the sake of space and getting to the point, I'll leave those supporting roles as an honorable mention in this review.
To open, we've got Yumeji Fujiwara. He's your not-so-average-but-not-by-much Sophomore in High School...what separates him is his goofy ability to predict the nature of someone's dreams that night. Remember when we were 5 and would meet our index finger and our thumb to imitate goggles, glasses, binocs, etc? Whelp, he does that and is able to predict based off of the colors he sees surrounding your body. Kinda goofy and not all that impressive but it does prove to have a use. He's lighthearted and overall pretty nice guy, he doesn't give up on people and keeps his promises. His life changes a bit when he meets Merry, who I'l go into next, as she 'falls from the sky' and promptly puts him on his back as a cushion. We move onward from there...a little bit more perspective will be in her description.
Next on the list, we've got Merry Nightmare, later dubbed "Dream Eater Merry" a la Yumeji. She's what is known as a Dream Demon, creatures that live in the dream world (who'd have thought?) that we all visit when we crash out at night. Here's the thing, instead of the humans creating their own dreams and these creatures happen to walk in, the humans, without knowledge of the fact, enter the territories of these particular dream demons when they sleep. These demons can come over to the real world by using their visitors as 'vessels'...in short you share a body. Some force their way in, some don't. I'm getting somewhere with this...and here it is, Merry is special in this because she is in the real world WITHOUT a vessel. She hasn't the faintest clue as to why she's there and she has been here, not to give anything away, for a VERY long time trying to return to the dream world. Well after some short-term tsundere with Yumeji, they create a 'contract' between each other to return her to the dream world. Story progresses from there.
For our few sentence honorable mentions in perspective to face-time, we've got the not-so-important-but-so-important Yuri Kounagi, Engie Threepiece, Ryouta Ijima, Isana Tachibana, and, later on, Mistletine.
I described the plot more or less in the main character descriptions now that I look at it. I will say this to reassure and to establish that this does have what I would call a 'solid' plot, simply because it's not episodic...it does progress. I make it a personal point to not go into excruciating detail on the plot simply because I think it gives too much away and takes away the splendor of discovery by actually watching.
The plot could get a little sketchy here and there as to what direction in which it's really going. Are they going to try getting X, are they pursuing Y, or are they going to take down Z. Get the picture? It was could be a little ambiguous as to who the actual main antagonist is based on sequence of events. I guess they finally settled down and made a group decision, for at least this season, they were going to choose Mistletine and Ryouta. I say that simply because she came a bit later in the game. Maybe they tried a little too hard to keep things open for a second season or maybe that's just how it turned out.
Again, it could very well be to keep things open for a new series, trying to not reveal too much in terms of story, in which they engage the actual head honcho. If not, then you can decide for yourself on how you react towards the ending...not necessarily fair to write a review and use the body of the story or the ending as an aversion to actually seeing it for yourself. I intentionally beat around the bush. Yeah I get it, time is great, but you're also sitting here watching this instead of doing something that could be multitudes more constructive..correct? I thought the beef of the story and the ending was nice and I'll leave it at that for my feedback.
Enough of my rant and back to the task at hand, Art and Sound! I thought the art to be very attractive and pleasant to the eyes. Bright, colorful, not jagged, they made sure they didn't color outside the lines...I'll just reiterate the fact that it is a very attractive form of drawing in my eyes. It gave the characters a much warmer feel. I suppose, the art was the strongest part of the anime in my eyes. The sound wasn't without clarity and the effects, albeit a little generic, were in sync with what was actually going on. Nothing really felt out of place when it came to battle music or execution of sound effects. The intro music and ending music were both pleasant and matched whatever opening and closing cinematic they were paired with.
Overall, I found this to be a rather enjoyable anime to watch. It's a nice break from the serious and takes the viewer back to a much lighter and youthful setting in which to relax in. You get to experience comradery among friends for a common interest, the strength of the heart, and, most importantly, the power of your dreams! Thanks for reading, enjoy the show. read more
Jun 17, 2012
The idea of the dreams and dream demons was very cool and interesting. I really liked how they portrayed the dream world and reality, and the story was really clear and simple. However, it eventually got boring and very predictable. They fought many of the same kind of dream demons, creating a predictable result. The ending, which I don't intend to spoil, was also extremely predictable, like cliched or cheesy. One major fault was the primary antagonist. It shifted from one character to another in the middle of the series, and never brought up the former antagonist again. It was like the creators changed their minds or something. Anyway, the idea was cool, but the story itself was boring, and very short. Lastly, the actual conflict changed from trying to bring Merry back, to saving Sana. Therefore, liked the antagonist, it lacked consistency and so the initial conflict never resolved.
The art in the characters was what attracted me to this series, especially in Merry. I like these kinds of character designs very much. I also liked the background changes when there is a shift from reality to the dream world, that was very nice. However, the dream world was less developed than reality, kind of empty, or with the same designs. I also liked how in some important moments, they had a cool picture to capture the moment.
The voice acting was fine. The intro music was pretty good, with the exception of one part. It was obviously a shortened version though, and ended very abruptly. The music in the anime was really weird, and I thought it was different from other series, but in a worse way. It didn't seem to fit the scene.
The characters were very well done. With the exception of Saki and the poem guy, the characters were consistently involved in the story, and played a major role. Saki and the guy were there for almost no reason, except as friends who didn't play any role). Other than that, each character was unique in his or her own way, and was generally interesting. One thing I didn't like was that the protagonist was perfect. In every anime and in real life, nobody is perfect (usually creating the conflict). However, the protagonist was perfect (always did the right thing, supported everyone else, faulted in no way at all), so it was unbelievable. Another thing is that the antagonist didn't actually directly come into play until late in the series, so until then it was kind of boring. Anyway, I really liked the characters, but that's in part because of the art.
I started off enjoying this series;but, by the second or third episodes, it was boring, and I had to take breaks between sessions. It is very predictable, and it takes a long time to develop each character. By late in the series (latter half), we finally know almost all the characters. So, it's pretty boring up until the last few episodes.
I would not recommend this anime, as it's predictability is too high. It did have great potential, but it seemed like a quick ending, and a short series. read more
Apr 28, 2011
Action. This is a action anime. There is some type of action conflict that arises in every single episode. The beginning was fairly good and tied in some of the major points of this anime together but you have to really focus a bit to understand what is going on for the first two episodes.
Supernatural. Dream demons are the things in this anime that take hold of humans to make them their vessels. So needless to say, it is supernatural. I don't think I should go any further into it than that.
On a side note, some parts of the anime reminded of some romance but it is not the main focus so really should not pay much attention to it.
Overall this anime is good but it is not great. I wish that they would not rush things too hastily but I feel like they did a bit but I think the overall score of this anime is good. I wouldn't recommend this anime to anyone who is just starting to get into anime for it might be hard to follow sometimes and this is not the greatest anime out there. For those who like action and supernatural, this is up your alley. You will enjoy this anime but not really love it. If you have time, watch this anime, but if you have other priorities like some other anime, then go watch those.
Sorry, no witty comments in this review. See you next time. read more
Apr 10, 2011
The protagonist, Yumeji, has a special ability to predict what dream others will have by making a ring with his fingers and looking through it. This makes him look like an idiot in the process, but proves to be a very useful ability as he can also see who is possessed by Muma (Incubus), residents of the dream world. He has a strong sense of justice like most harem protagonists, and vows to help Merry, an abnormality of a Muma who exists in reality with her own body, to return to the dream world.
First few episodes of this series begin with "villain of the week" format, but the story flows better once all the main characters are introduced. The plot is driven by mystery, as new characters and concepts are introduced with very little detail at first, slowly unraveled and leads to a new mystery. The story maintains a decent pace with the cycle of new mysteries constantly to keep us guessing what will happen next. In this respect, this series is very much like 'Fate/Stay Night' in the way story unfolds, and also the "master-servant" bounded relationship where death of one side affects another.
The variety of dream worlds were excellent, with each one projecting distinctively different atmosphere, and the battles are different. Sometimes Merry fights, other times it's between two other characters. Sometimes Merry may win or lose, villains may even escape. Sometimes battle never takes place, and our heroes are taken into the dream world merely for a conversation. This series makes the bests use of the dream concept by creating different patterns that never feel repetitive.
There is a consistent theme to arguments between focal characters and antagonists: The importance of having hopes and dream, and morality of achieving objectives at the cost of others.
While the story was well structured, character behaviors did not always make sense. All the good guys are so naive that they don't seem real. If it's between a person losing their dream or losing the control of their body, the choice should be obvious, especially since the bad guys are trying to take over more victims. Not only that, the heroines suddenly decided it was fine to defeat the boss (therefore taking the host's dream) in the end without coming up with a proper resolution or epiphany to their value conflict, effectively throwing out all the arguments out of the window. I did not understand why they didn't just kill the teacher in the real life, when they already decided that he was pure evil and deserve to have his dream taken away. They knew his identity and how strong his Muma was, taking his life is better than having all their dreams and more Muma's life taken away.
Character development was done poorly as well. Merry has shown absolutely no romantic interest in Yumeji at first, but suddenly turns into tsundere out of the blue. Her, and other tsundere were all blushing and stuttering in really obvious ways that were not convincing at all.
Animation in this series was so wonderfully done that I had to recheck OP credits to make sure it was done by J.C.Staff. It turns out, 'Yumekui Merry' was directed by an anime movie director, which might explain why there were numerous advanced cinematic techniques that made this series an absolute pleasure to watch.
The way hair bounces, character fluidity, and choreography of battle scenes were incredible. Background art had a canvas-like texture that also seemed to have depth. What separates the animation in this series from all other action series though, is the way "slow" scenes are presented. When characters are talking, every scene was not just in medium shot. They are seen from many different angles, distance, and sometimes even through foreground objects with deep depth of field. "Camera" is constantly moving, and the way it pans in or out were beautifully executed. Transitions between real world and dream world are seamless, and the surreal abstract backgrounds in the dream world always seemed bizarre and mysterious.
The quality of art and animation were technically very high, and the distinctive style and atmosphere worked. It is the best artistically directed TV anime I have seen, and this is the series I will measure all future TV series animation against.
Sound in this series was also exceptionally well done. Every character's voice matched perfectly, full of emotions. The detail of background noise in some scenes are mind-boggling. Even whispers are discernible and everything sounds real. In addition, the randomness of background noise such as sports club jogging and chanting, bird chirping in outdoor scenes, and bar code scanner beeping exist without those objects ever appearing on the screen. I especially liked this technique, because it gives us viewers so much more detail and sense of reality to the environment, stimulating both senses at the same time.
BGM was brilliant, every piece projected a distinct, creepy and ominous atmosphere using different instruments, and battle themes were exciting with a sense of urgency and desperation. Sound was really well edited, but poorly mixed in select scenes where BGM was obtrusive against conversation, and seiyuu voicing did not match character mouth movement.
OP was a very catchy rock song that suits the series really well, but the OP animation was rather bland and flashes too fast to be memorable. ED was rather generic.
I almost judged this series by the cover as another J.C.Staff harem series, but it turned out far more intriguing than I had expected. 'Yumekui Merry' had an interesting premise, but character and story did not develop as well as they could have. However, animation and sound alone is fun enough to watch, and there is something about it that draws you in to the story.
The final episode was dramatic, but rather unsatisfying because characters "broke the rules" of the dream world by realizing the strength of their will translates to their physical strength. While this is an acceptable ending for the final battle, their quest is still far from over. There are also far too many loose ends left unexplained. Many viewers may feel they have been betrayed by the ending. I'm curious how a sequel would salvage this.
This series was very enjoyable assuming there will be a sequel. I will be hoping and dreaming for a followup season. read more