24 of 24 episodes seen
Before SAO II, I was almost harassed to read the light novels. I tried, but as a person who genuinely loves reading, those texts were simply too bad to present any kind of interest.
I started SAO II out of sheer curiosity and because naivete can push one to go back and try again even in the most hopeless of situations. I was also intrigued when die hard SAO fans said SAO II was "so" bad.
SAO II indeed has about nothing similar to the initial SAO. Its major improvement is the fact tha it stops centering around Kirito and although his harem is still around, there is a lot more depth to the female characters. Basically, SAO II is about the girls, who from now on stop being just a soulless crowd around the absurdly powerful male lead.
SAO II, although it still addresses a very young audience, has a very prominent psychological take to it and presents two dramatic faces of the virtual reality dive. Unlike the first SAO, who centered on ingame events, SAO II centers around real life issues that drive one person to escapism. Cheesy, but relate-able. If SAO was dealing with the game impacting real life, SAO II deals with life impacting the ingame experience.
The first half is the story of Shion, a girl troubled by some childhood traumatic event, who tries to deal with her inner fears while facing them inside the game. The second half centers around Asuna and her new girlfriend.
Shion arc is the kind of story most gamers can relate to. It makes you wish Asuna was Shion. It is a very good action packed arc, with good action and powerful cliffhangers.
Asuna/Yuuki arc redeems Asuna for being just an annoying, shallow character by providing more background to her real life. She is no longer the perfect princess, perfect housewife, perfect warrior. And this is where you realize that her only defect was the lazy author who embodied her to be a sort of ideal feminine persona but only kept that in his mind,not bothering to actually write about Asuna's human sides.
SAO II has a lot more real world scenes and from that point of view, it could be cathegorized as a slight slice of life. The first SAO lacked in this department, so this is indeed an improvement (fictional characters that are interracting in a fictional world which is also fictional world for them do no build much credibility, wouldnt you agree?).
The soundtrack is good, has a great impact on the dramatic scenes and the OPs/EDs are actually carefully composed. However, the music itself is not the least bit original, as basically all the chorus sequences try to copy the Kajiura Yuki's .hack//Sign pieces. Quite a good copy i'd say, but... plagiarism is bad.
SAO II is packed with a few very intense fithing scenes. However, the second half lacks tremendously in the animation sector, frames being all choppy, looking rather like a photo stream than a fluid animation.
I woudl say SAO II is worth a watch. Definitely a lot different from the first SAO and you might find that everything that annoyed you in the first one, was corrected here, even though, overall, the show could have been exploited a ton lot better to its potential. read more
13 of 13 episodes seen
Gantz is the most straight forward anime I've watched. The most disgusting, inconvenient, uncomfortable truths about human nature are just there, in your face.
Gantz has no shame at all and does not know how to tell beautiful lies, regardless of teh subject.
Gantz does not sugarcoat its characters because Gantz doesn't need heroes.
Gantz makes you laugh or makes you want to punch the characters, but all these contradictory things are entwined beautifully in a situational comic that is a rare gem these days.
Gantz is not to be taken seriously, as Gantz is merely a parody of the ugly side of humanity. Therefore, Gantz does not need clishees like "plot" or "character development" because Gantz is not for teh blind, heartless and deaf.
Gantz has one of the most heartmelting soundtracks. If you manage to crack the shell of this show, that is.
Yea, you need to bare with it and you need to have a damn healthy sense of humor. And you need not be a whiny bitch if you want to not feel butthurt about Gantz. Because this show is not for just anyone.
7 of 25 episodes seen
I think this could have been a good show, a very very entertaining one. BUT only for the people that actually play mmorpgs. Why ? Because there are certain "inside" things that "normal ppl" wouldn't really understand or better say perceive as being utterly hilarious.
For example, if you are a gamer like me, you will have fun realizing that the producers MUST DEFINITELY be hardcore players as well, otherwise i doubt it would have been possible for them to reproduce the gaming clishees so closely. You will definitely find yourself thinking "omg i was also a solo player!" "omg this happened to me too when i joined a guild" "rofl i also died when tried to open a treasure chest!" and similar stuff.
I suppose this show could have turned great for the likes of me IF it only followed the player's experience closely for the entire show. It could have been funny because, you know, when spending hours and days and maybe years playing a game we, the gamers, basically do what SAO's plot is about: we shut ourselves in away from the outside world. Althought we aren't really in a coma like in this show, we live in our virtual pointless space for quite a long time.
This show could have been intelligent if it somehow managed to mock the gaming experience rather than taking it seriously and thus disappointing, at least me. As an anime show, this is, without a doubt, absolutely terrible. It's basically a harem with annoying girls who pop up every damn episode with their "noob" stories, somehow Kirito has to save them (or not if they are out of luck). It's so repetitive that after watching for so long, waiting for the story to actually move on, you finally realize that you are watching an endless arc of fillers.
Why is this ranked 53?! How can this be ? I agree, the show might get back on track later on, but since for weeks we are just watching fillers, the boring kind of fillers that have no point whatsoever, I had lost hope that it will turn to be the amazing show that I expected it to be after watching first episode. Maybe the high rates were based on people's expectations also, not on actual values of the fillers.
Will continue watching just because I still have hope. But for now this is just a very very big disappointment. read more
12 of 12 episodes seen
I haven't watched Blood+ and I couldn't care less about the Blood franchise either. Wether this is better or worse in my opinion doesn't have any relevance because as it stands alone I found it to be a great great show. It is a bit different from other animes out there and I can probably figure why it fell from grace in such a horrible way. But I have to say one thing: Blood+ fanboys and fangirls, stop blaming the pacing!
-About that pacing...-
All episodes are basically divided in two halves: the slice of life half and the gory half.
Now, that slice of life half was extremly boring for most people, I found it fascinating. Because this show just begs to differ. Any mystery show out there starts with blatant introduction of fishy characters, you know right from the start who is the good guy, who is the bad guy and who are the suspects. Well in Blood-C, the tension is bitter sweet because the boredom and silence and stillness that characterizes the characters and the surroundings are confusing as hell and they do a perfect job in creating the so called "silence before the storm". Its is THIS feeling that makes this show great. Because it would have been easier to put tags on the bad guys and throw in a somewhat induced subjectivity, but if you really like mysteries and mindtwisting stuff this is the right thing for you.
-Art & Animation-
Not very imrpessed on the art. I heard it's Clamp, but since i never liked Clamp I guess it's explainable. 7feet tall characters look deformed anyway, add to that an undersized head and you got... something ugly. And this thing with the heads happens in quite a few scenes and it's distracting as hell. Other than that, Clamp designs kind of lack... shadows and shine. And probably details also. Actually it's more like an unproportional distribution of details: we have graphic details in some places (like some useless hair bangs) but lack details on more important stuff - like the face. Animation on characters isn't too great either, they kind of lack expression and they are overall pretty stiff... lifeless.
BUT the gory fight scenes are awesome. Instead of using cheap "shining blades" tricks to draw attention from the actual moves, I think they did a pretty good job here. And it's not only about the way the animation was done, but the coreography was perfect also. Very enjoyable fights, cool moves and such, and, ofc, some blood pouring with quite some generosity here and there in a very "organic" way... not the silly "blood spray" things that we see in some other shows. What can I say... blood splashes are always nice :D
I liked the music. The symphonic type of music, I don't recall hearing any silly high school tune. It's teh kind of background music that has a great effect when associated with the dedicated scenes, it gives you shivers and scares you to death when people get beheaded, but you would never probably listen to it alone: losing it's context, the magic just fades away. But that is good because my winamp already has too many songs to scroll.
Well to speak about these would require some spoilers so i'd rather not. Overall, I found the characters okay, the strong point would be that they are uite enigmatic and it takes a while to figure out what they want and what they play. That is, in my book, a good thing because it helped me enjoy this piece. Saya however, I wouldn't be surprised if people would find her annoying. At least in the first half (the slice of life thing) because she is doing a lot of silly things and is very clumsy. Yeah right, like we haven't seen this kind of main playing the hero before.
Do watch this. It's good. Forget about the other Blood stuff, don't compare to anything and just enjoy this as it is. read more
10 of 10 episodes seen
Hakuouki is tagged as "shoujo" because it is based on an otome game (a game designed for girls) but I can tell you for sure that the anime and it's plot are not really centered around the needy, rather colorless main female lead, but on emphasizing some historical facts about the military force of the time known as the Shinsengumi.
As many people are put out by the female character, who, during the first season, looks really out of place among the Shinsengumi, I would like to state this firmly: Chizuru is not the main focus of this show. The way I see it, CHizuru and her lacking personality is just a reminiscence of the original otome game which, as being addressed to a young female public, had to have this character to serve as an avatar for the player herself: Chizuru is colorless because she is a mere "virtual shell" for the player who is trying a bit of roleplay. Simply put, Chizuru is a secondary character, but a main instrument.
On my personal opinion, I suppose the staff could have come up with a better idea of a female character, provided it was actually needed for it to be, but they probably needed to stick to the original creator's idea.
In other words, I was completely unimpressed by Chizuru and totally won over by the rest of the show, especially by the history behind it and the way the show paid attention to some crucial details that build up the drama and tension of some people that actually existed (yes, knowing Hijikata was actually a real guy does make you cross your fingers everytime he is fighting).
Back to the actual history behind this anime. A lot of shows around here have samurais and they all tell about honor, death, protecting the ideals and stuff like this because this is what best sells. Hakuouki proves that true historical feeling can't be brought up just by having a guy with sword willing to die everytime his honor is at stake. The spirit of the samurai wasn't actually that shallow and real people, as well as human values, change with time. Hakuouki succeeds in depicting exactly this conflict, between the old and the new, the "death" of the samurais, coming along with the fireguns that slowly transformed them into what they are now: legends and stories of a bravery that was not measured by automatic tools.
Shinsengumi were this special military force assigned to defend the shogun empire. Although they were following the samurai code, they were't samurais and they were recruiting from among the normal people as long as they were willing to respect the code and die by it, were they to break it. The male characters in Hakuouki serve this purpose of showing how a lot of different and dispersed people came together following the belief they had in common, they were nor noble, nor more gifted than any other simple person. Regarding their clothing, I have read some opinions here and there about how flashy and inappropriate they were dressed in the show. Well, the real Shinsengumi uniform was exactly that: blue and yellow, flashy with the purpose of intimidating the enemy. Due to this one excentricity, their reputation was rather tainted, as they did not follow the common customs. Moreover, just as in the anime, they were using this knots and cords to keep a better control on their kimonos and large sleeves during the fights, so that they could have a better freedom during the fightings.
That being said, the producers didn't actually want to just make the guys look flashy: that was what Shinsengumi was about. Those "flying" laces around Hijikata are not there just to make him look like a "shoujo-ish" character, they are the that distinctive Shinsengumi cords I was talking about. The certain Souji Okita tying his sword to his hand (I bet everyone has this imagine stuck in their head by now) I believe is not mere coincidence either, but rather just another symbolic way of showing the practical thinking of the Shinsengumi. Nothing out of place or too theatrical.
What made the anime version of the Shinsengumis very dear to me was their change of uniform that occured in the beginnng of this season 2. Sure enough, the real version of those uniforms wasn't that good looking but even so, it resembles. While the real Shinsengumi uniform had its story and charm, by adapting to a modern european style they are in fact trying to cope with the new and replace the old, heavy and difficult traditional japanese armor. Again, their act is not seen with a good eye by the more conservative society. I found it somehow heartbreaking - the way they are trying to adapt to the new while still fighting for, basically, an old, lost cause.
Other details that I was able to spot include Hijikata's first pose in his new uniform, which is teh anime reproduction of an actual photo of the man wearing that uniform. Also, reading about Shinsengumis one could also find out that Harada's scar on his belly isn't some appearance trick, but has an actual real explanation behind it. Harada, just as the real one, mastered a spear and not a sword and thus he was, they say, ridiculed for being a mere peon and not even being able to commit a proper seppuku - of course, harada wished to prove the guy wrong.( On a side note, considering he didn't die, I assume he proved he wasn't actual able to perform a proper seppuku ....) Later on though, it is said he was showing his scar off with pride and also was inspired by it while chosing his family's crest.
The drama of the Shinsengumis parting and disbanding or dying is fascinating as it is also based on what actually happened to the real Shinsengumi. Basically, a group of people that strongly believed in their code, not making any distinction between their members as long as they were willing to train, was bound to end the way they did (in real life) along with the end of that era. The inner conflict of all the male characters is not only believable, but true to reality. I deeply admire that the anime did not try to change the facts even thought they had to have, here and there, sugar coated scenes so that Chizuru could also have her part once in a while.
The sueprnatural factor in the show is, ofc, not related to anything that has actually happened in real life, but I believe it was a perfect add for three reasons:
1. as for the Shinsengumi: normal people such as themselves, trying to be something "more" and save the things that they believe in, no matter the cost, is believable.
2. producers didn't use this to alter the facts in the end and that is good because I assume the temptation of making it a happy end was big, considering the characters' empowerment. Thus, them basically "failing"
again, even with supernatural help, just adds to the main drama.
3. being feared by the people is better suggested through the use of that certain elixir, than just by being part of the Shinsengumi, as in the case of the actual real people - either way, the effect is the same which is admirable.
I have to express my respect for the way some sad scenes were made.I heard people comparing this show to Clannad because... it made them cry even more. To be honest, I also cry easily but for some reason, this show just deeply impressed me, having an impact even deeper than the actually tearjerking stuff because it used a lot the power of suggestion rather than cheap old plain visible drama. I'm talking about, for example, not showing the moment of someone's death, you know, like the guy mumming his last breath, but showing some other details that let you figure out what actually happened. While in a way it is painful not to see it, because some people also cling to the hope that maybe "he didn't die", the way they animated this just gives a more noble feeling towards it. Simply put, it's elegant and triggers emotions.
Not much left to be said. I found the animation to be very... "shounen" like actually. A lot of action is present during fights and I found it very enjoyable, detailed and smooth, with cool effects. The guys look awesome, even if it wa sintended for the "shoujo" public (maybe - or probably?) I do believe the guys' faces. attitudes and behaviours are fit for what the original Shinsengumi were - some hell of a cool guys. There is quite a lot blood and gore present also.
The music is good, not everything is memorable, except for certain sad themes, but it fits the scenes and it doesn't make you feel like only the music is running the whole excitement. The very strong point of the sound is the use of drums during the tensioned scenes. It just builds up on that "samurais and assassins" athmosphere too damn well.
The history, the characters themselves, the sounds, it's impossible not to get hypnotized by the feeling of this show. In fact I am pretty sure I'll rewatch this soon after I finish watching the Reimeiroku also, hoping it will also be unforgettable. read more
1 of 11 episodes seen
While the plot/summary seemed to put you through some exhausting story about a love triangle including the ghost of a dead husband, the first episode depicted a show fresh and invigorating like the soft summer rain. From the color palette, with brushy textures, fresh spingtime greens and friendly yellows to the entire relaxed athmosphere. Too soon to place any bets yet, considering first impressions this looks like a happy ending kind of show, but one that will definitely walk around the usual boring love story routine. Because....
The male lead, Hazuki, looks like the average "loser", falling in love with the pretty short black haired widdow to whom he is too shy to confess. He is composed, he looks like he doesn't give a damn about anything, and he looks like he's the type to quit before really trying. Or maybe not: what makes this character particular is the fact that he proves not to be that easy to anticipate and he overcomes the "danger" of becoming that kind of annoying guy who can't take the challenges. Hazuki is the kind of character that grows to be loved by the viewers, being bitter but realistic, bored but passionate, limited but resourceful.
It seems the creators managed to avoid the clichee of the love being confessed only in the end, and that this show will actually focus on the "war" between Hazuki and the ghost husband. Far from being a comedy tho, it does have some intelligently hilarious moments in the scenes that contain the both determined guys, one dead and one pretty much alive.
Sadly, Rokka, the female lead, didn't make a too big impression. She's playing the sad kind widdow, but at least without being annoying, didn't look like anything too deep. But then again, for an 11 episode summer show I think anything else would have been too much and unnecessary.
Another strong point of this show would be the animation and the art. The character's gestures and poses is something that hits you from the first few minutes as they emanate grace where needed and they express the character's attitude very good - talking about body language. I can't say if that's something you often see in josei shows, but here in particular shows that a lot of attention has been put into these kind of details.
If this will be a good story or not - we will see. But either way, it looks promising and flowlessly executed. read more
13 of 13 episodes seen
My gosh I couldn't have been more wrong.
Why did I start this in the first place? I was looking for a decently looking comedy with some action so that I could pass a couple of days without thinking about anything. Something light. And pretty and at least a little intelligent so I don't end up falling asleep. I ended with Angel Beats! almost cursing my luck for having to meet up with such a silly looking anime, and yes, I went for it totally because of the high ranking. I mean how bad could it be?
The fact that it only has 13 episodes was a plus, I didn't feel like spending half a week with a high school bunch of teens fighting angels.
I did also regret my anime choice after the first 2 episodes and decided to watch something else. The premise of the anime was okay, with a boy ending up on the other side and all, surprisingly the background and the characters were A LOT to VERY appealing to me, although from pictures around here I wasn't really expecting that. I was expecting something "big" to happen, to make me want to watch the next episode, but it just didn't. Not in the first couple episodes.
You are wrong to assume, like I did, that it will turn into a very linear comedy/action silly type of anime. I thought I will have to endure 13 episodes each depicting some sort of fight versus who knows what purgatory entities. Because you get to grow tired of those repetitive fighting scenes anime, where the plot doesn't really look like going anywhere.
The change came to about episode 4-5, where you get some better insight to the characters and you get to actually like them. From the first concert you start to wonder what is it actually all about? The concert's atmosphere, with quite nice music, the action going on outside the concert room...the thrills of it... it's quite entertaining. And here's where you realize what this is all about: all the teenagers here are in some sort of purgatory.
About the purgatory. People around here tend to take things very...literally? As in they start criticizing that and that because they know purgatory wasn't really what it looks like here... why is purgatory a highschool? why are in purgatory only young people? why are some of them extremely violent (there are couple of VERY bloody scenes somewhere) when we know those kinds of people go to hell not purgatory.
My explanation is: nobody had returned from purgatory so first of all nobody knows. If you can't open your mind to some creative points of view then there's no point arguing over it.
The reason is actually explained in the anime. So you don't have to bear with just another anime that deals with just teenagers for some poor of excuse reason.
This show is a lot of things. Now, as quite some time had passed since i actually finished watching it (and i've been completing other series since) I can clearly see one thing: the best thing about this show is that it manages gracefully to deal with this many themes and to bring together different genres: it's a comedy while being a drama, it's a slice of life while dealing with supernatural and it's silly and serious both, dealing with actually a pretty difficult phylosophical debate. I have difficulty understanding what kind of target public they were aiming at as it has something for everyone, from good music, to drama, action, story and smooth art.
Although I had a lot of fun with the action scenes which somehow managed to make me laugh quite a lot (I'm not a very big fan of japanese humor) I was very very surprised at the more dramatic scenes. Each character's story is touching and gets you thinking.
As the show advances, the backgrounds become more and more bright, along with very lively colors they give a so very wonderful feeling every time one of the characters comes to a resolution.
The last 3-4 episodes are very intense nd definitely what makes the contrast i was talking about. There are literally two sides of this show, the bright and the dark, as we also have reality and "the other side". The last scenes are nothing you would expect from a "funny silly show".
I'll have to point it out though how important it is to wait for the final ED and watch after it.
I had a great deal of fun watching this. And the best thing of all is the feeling I got in the end. It's the first ever TV show I watch that has this sort of impact over me, although I've watched some others that were supposed to actually have this effect (at the recommendation of various people) I never quite got it: what was it to cry at some cartoons.
And that's why I'm giving this a 10: totally worth the time read more
24 of 24 episodes seen
Gotta say, IF you are a shoujo genre fangirl, then this would probably get a 9. I don't mean it in a bad way, I am quite happy with it too. That's why i gave it an overall 7 (good): i do enjoy cheap dramas at times and i definitely love guys BUT my no. 10 shoujo anime is much better. so keep in mind that I gave it this 7 as within the shoujo genre.
I'll start with why I needed to see this and why I absolutely loved it. This series right here is a combination of all anime male awesomeness: both characters and seiys.I can't help but guess they intentionally picked this cast to catch on all the fangirls everywhere. So let me introduce you:
Luka - main character with yumm Sebastian Michaelis look alike. And a demon too. Voiced by none other than Takahura Sakurai. While you may not be familiar with names, I'm sure you watched D.Gray-Man and you know who Kanda is. And you definitely remember his voice. If you don't know Kanda though, you must know Suzaku from Code Geass. YES!!! that one helluva voice.
Okay. So we have a Sebastian Michaelis (Korushitsuji) guy without the voice of actual Sebastian. But no worries, his seiyu is here too: Daisuke Ono voicing Hotsuma. Haaaa. Really. I feel like I can just die happy now for I have heard everything i needed to in this life.
As I was saying, everything about the cast is carefully put together so that the girls would love it. I've never watched another show with so many gorgeous guys.
And shounen-ai. Damn... I was so close! And from now on I'm gonna start whining. Someone misled me into thinking this actualli didn't have shounen-ai. I like shounen ai. But with Daisuke Ono and Akahura Sakurai?! Those merciless creators... Still, I have to say this anime exceeded my expectations from a shoujo shounen-ai one.
The story. I think it's beautiful. Not original, but still touching for my fangirl little heart. Yuki, the main character, in love with Luka, a demon, dies and reborns into the body of the least appealing bishounen in the anime. Yuki the guy ruins the show for me. His voice is horrible and his way to be is useless. He's that kind of "I have no power except healing and understanding of others feelings but IM A MAN" who ends up shouting "nooo don;t kill our worst enemy because he was my friend" and everybody listens to him because he was a great woman in his past life. Luka is still around, protecting him. And as I was saying this show is worth watching for Luka and Hotsuma alone.
The anime starts slow with a boring but dramatic introduction to the present. Every episode starts in an epic flashback or more like a vision featuring Luka and Yuki as woman naked. Hooray for the fanservice that even it was so damn repetitive I watched it every time. Eventually further in some decent fighting arcs start, which are quite okay paced for a shoujo anime. I mean I have seen a lot of worse fighting scenes in animes that overall were better than this one. It never hurt any girl's heart to see some blood and suffering. I just wish Yuki would disappear.
18 of 17 chapters read
As a huge huge Gundam Seed fan it is hard for me to try and stay fair to the actual quality of this hence why I actually bought this in the first place: if you really really love something buying it feels like the right thing. Plus I am pretty sure at a first glance I couldn't even find any online source for it.
Because it follows the exact story in the anime it couldn't be worse than it. However, it is kinda rushed and at times it does feel that I am probably enjoying it a lot more simply because i know what happens in the parts that are actually missing. For example Shin's story isn't as emphasized. On the other hand, because the personal things are not as detailed as in the anime, could be a good thing for the people that are more into action scenes. The gundams appear every 2-3 pages at least.
I can't find any flaw to the art. It is very clear and neat yet detailed. Ever felt like you don't understand just what the heck are you looking at? Every panel (and I'm mostly talking about fight scenes which usually make problems) are crystal clear, no confusion at all. The fighting scenes are great and the dynamic is well executed. My only problem would be that the characters don't really look like the ones in the anime.
Well I loved the anime because I could connect to the characters. Since things are rushed in the manga, as I have previously stated, the characters insight is pretty poor. I'm not at all pleased to how Shin looks rather a crazy dumb tard than an angry, revenge motivated rebellious thing. He was kinda hot in the anime, here is kinda... not.
Enjoyment: 10 - outstanding
Because I am a seed fan enjoying all the tension moments here at my own will it feels awesome. I am a kinda slow "watcher" and since I specifically like how the fight scenes look like here overall I am perceiving this as a bit more dark than the anime where I usually lost focus. I wish they would just put some sort of soundtrack to the pages too
Overall: 8 -because there isn't anything new and because it was rushed but this still means "very good" right? read more
9 of 23 episodes seen
Firstly, let me confess I've been trying my absolute best to like this show, mostly because I had heard a lot of good things about it. I have yet to finish watching it as I am pretty stubborn and I like to believe I watched all there was before making final statements.
But I just can't forgive Clannad for being this poor for more than half of first season. I will explain why.
COnsidering the tags and people's reviews, I was expecting a peaceful slice of life show, with a tiny bit of everything in it, enough to make it interesting. When I started watching it I was instantly bothered by a couple of things that didn't improve in any way later on.
This show is all about cuteness when it comes to visuals, voice acting and music.The characters look very very little with those too big wet eyes supposedly to make a big emotional/expressive impact I suppose. Truth is that most of the time I am looking at their sharp bangs and praying they won't cut open their eyeballs. Apart from being cute, it becomes a real issue if absolutely all female characters have this problem, meaning that all of them look exactly the same. It's like the character designer didn't really put in any effort to add some personal touch to the characters.
It goes a lot further than this. Being introduced to Nagisa's house for the first time and knowing this show must have had some "fantasy" elements in it too, I was 100% sure that her house was some weird place where more Nagisas live in somwhat different dimensions or something. I know, I am a creep. But her entire family appeared one by one and they ALL looked like her so I was thinking "omg she just turned male!" (about her dad) then "omg this is her in 5 years from now" (her mom) and it took me a while to figure out that they were all actually real people, different people. The age is also not reflected at all. Her father looks like he's 17-19. There's a wedding somwhere and the groom looks 15 I had a very weird sense that someone was just being too much of a perv drawing that.
Characters and development:
As I said before, this show is about cute and moe characters. But I would expect everything to have a limit. Besides the intoxicating appearance, the actual characters, at least when it comes to female cast, are completely pathetic. Fo even mere students who go to school and are overall bad with study, it is beyond impossible to be that clumsy and unaware of yourself and the things around you. Sadly enough, I just had an acute feeling of shame while watching some of the scenes where the girls were proving how they don't know their own basic abilities, they don't hear while they are called by their name even though tehre's nobody else in the room, they don't know a wound actually hurts (even after the third try that proved an open cut does indeed hurt), they don't know how to communicate with anybody at all and somehow nobody finds that unusual and generally... they just don't know anything at all.
What is even worse is generally the way in which women are presented in this show. Even the ones who don't suffer from chronic autism and shyness, are simply the kind of "i want a simple life to please my husband and that's the greatest pleasure there is". I'm not a feminist or anything, but things that are too obvious like this are really hard not to notice. Of course I can explain this issue by pointing at the name of the show, which clearly makes a reference to the family. And being a Japanese show about family, of course you expect their traditional values to be projected into anime stereotypes. But even if this is an explanation, it is merely an excuse for not having strong female characters.
Nagisa, which is supposed to be the main female cast is merely a shadow, at least in the first half. I can't point out at any of her character details because there is none other that that she cries a lot and is physically fragile, so overall the personification of fragility.
I am still not sure what this show is about and my expectations out of anime are really quite low. As long as the show feeds me with stuff to think and interpret at my own will, I am happy. But this is not the case. There is just one thing probably highlighted again and again in a repetitive way: we are not alone and we can make friends everywhere.
I was expecting to see some conflicts because this was a drama show. I am in for tear jerking shows even if they are cheap in the end if you have a good time it's okay. Instead I just have the feeling that this show tries too much to make me cry therefore the word "pathetic" is a good choice. I can think of a dramatic emotional moment regarding Tomoya's hand. because it was a nice scenery and the dramatic detail came in time, taking the viewer by surprise, synchronizing with the weather, with the tension between the 2 characters... etc. It was good in that "good" way that Clannad is probably intended to be. But it was just that one, insignificant, after which I had to enjoy a neverending arc about a very absurd thing. Since I'm trying not to throw in with any spoils, I'll just say it was, again, pathetic. The idea behind it was great, but again the highlighted details that were going on for 5 episodes or so where just mere fillers I can't help but think anyone could have came up with something more valuable. The basic story was sad okay, but the way they just stretched it for those long huours I couldn't focus on the boring meaningless dialogues, I was sleepy, annoyed and bored. And I was really feeling like I was wasting precious time of my life.
Overall: Show tries too much to make you cry lol. And it's all too forced and too unnatural: cute crying helpless characters and wooden stars are not enough.
Will continue watching this and updating my review as I finish. The reason is also that I really want to get to the second season, heard that one is worth suffering :))