9 of 9 episodes seen
Each episode is episodic, with not one necessarily leading into another. However, they take place during different times of the series. There are occasions when we even get to see a little bit of extra backstory that wasn’t mentioned in the actual anime. Whether it be past situations between characters, to the gang taking a comedic relaxing day. Now because these take place during different times of the story, it’s not really a special you should watch before the actual anime, because there are some minor spoilers to be had, especially with the last episode. I should mention that most of these episodes are in fact made to make you laugh, with the exception of a few, so the whole "war theme" isn’t as evident as it was in the series. The main reason why I think fans of the series should check these out, is because of the excellent final episode of these specials. It takes place after the events of the anime, and bring the series to a wonderful close. So if you’ve watched the series, and are debating on whether or not to pick up the theater specials, I would recommend to AT LEAST watch the last episode of these, you won’t regret it.
The music in this is the same as the series, which is the same as the video game. Ported exactly the way the game sounded. So if you loved the soundtrack, you will be happy to learn that it has been brought over as well. Instrumental background music both soft and aggressive depending on the situation, and really make you feel like you are back in the 1930s. All the Japanese voice actors also returned to filler the character’s roles.
The visuals on this at times are a bit more...uhhh...cartoony. This is especially true with the first episode, where everyone is on the chibi side. For the most part though it looks pretty much the same as the series, it even retains that blurred color effect found in some of the characters and scenery.
I think the biggest problem I had with the specials were with some of the characters. Because a lot of these were more comedy driven, some characters were given comedic roles that didn’t seem to gel right with their personalities from the series (this is especially true with characters like Selvaria and Cordelia). So it may seem a bit awkward at some parts. Everyone else though, is fine. It should also be mentioned that many of the episodes highlight a different character or unit.
If you’re a fan of the Valkyria Chronicles series, anime or video game, I recommend giving these a try. If you are new to the franchise then I would say to watch the main anime or play the video game before going into these. You’ll be glad you did once finished. read more
7 of 7 episodes seen
These specials feel exactly like what it says in the title...a special. Being that the episodes only last roughly two to three minutes, fans might be surprised that most of the episodes are split into about 3 parts an episode. Meaning that each skit lasts only about a minute or less. Sometimes they lead into one another, while other times they differ completely from the last scene. The skits remain quite random, and gone is the music theme the series set. Now we see the characters caught up in more random situations. Whether it be Yui thinking random thoughts about the cast, to the band being stranded on a deserted island, to watching them build a snowman in the winter. As expected they are all episodic, and don’t build on anything for the series future. I think the reason I was dissapointed with these, is because they remained a bit too bland in their approach. The situations they are in are not particularly as interesting as you would expect from K-ON!, making these feel more like a side attempt. Now some may argue that these are only 2 minute specials, and that they aren’t suppose to be particularly deep. While this is true, I still feel at the same time it could have been handled better.
Most people will probably hate the art style in these. While I can give them credit that they did stylized the look of K-ON! to some degree, the character design in this is quite poor. The characters are drawn very simplistic, with round hands, and under detailed backgrounds. It looks like something a 2nd grade student would make in their art session. I don’t mind simplicity, but this was a bit too much.
The sound I enjoyed quite a bit in this, which is rightfully so being that the franchise has a music theme. Although there is no opening theme to these, they use tracks for the actual anime, and the ending credits are fast paced and exciting. You even get some catchy bloops and bleeps in the background. The voice acting is also well done, all actresses came back to fill their appropriate roles. They’re cute, charming, and fun to listen to.
Surprisingly, I did feel the characters retained their personalities from the series, which will make these feel very familiar to their fans. Yui and Ui are still sweet, Mio is still as shy as ever, and even Azusa makes appearances here. Really that’s what made up for some of the short comings the specials had, with the actual characters. If you loved them before, I think you will like them in these as well.
Being that these specials are so short, I think fans should check them out. Overall, if you are in fact a hardcore K-ON! fan, then you will get some enjoyment from these. If you aren’t one, then you may want to skip these, and watch the OVA and/or wait for the second season of K-ON! to premiere. read more
1 of 1 episodes seen
The concept of this short is quite simple. Chiyo brings over here special camera to school, in order to help in a project that the girls are working on. Well as soon as Tomo sees it, and gets a hold of it, you know some havoc is about to happen. Most of the jokes are quite simple, and are only spoken through actual dialog. If you have seen the series, you may be dissapointed that none of the odd random scenes happen in this. Since 90% of this short is only seen through the cameras eyes, which gives this more of a realistic feeling. Considering that this special is only about 3 minutes long, they were actually able to cram most of the lead cast into it. Whether it be them making silly poses to the camera, to getting spied on. That’s basically the main point to this. However, the ending is quite humorous, and done in true Azumanga Diaoh fashion. So while it might not pack the punch for the TV show, it will leave you with a smile on your face afterwards.
The animation was quite good on this. They tweaked things from the series, and now the characters are animated in a bit more detail and color. In fact, the art style is probably the thing that will stand out most when watching this. The eyes of the characters look a bit more anime friendly, and during one of the scenes, a bit of 3D animation is thrown into the mix.
Regarding the music, it’s pretty sparse overall. There is a nice opening theme at the beginning, but none of the tracks from the show make it on here, and there is little to no background music to speak of in this. Which I have to admit, was dissapointing, but at the same time, did give it a certain feel in atmosphere. The voice acting in this, was quite nice to listen to as expected.
The characters (of course) didn’t get the time they had from the series, but they still had time to do some funny one liners, and even a bit of action thrown into the mix. And fans of Osaka will like how she is used in this.
Overall, if you like Azumanga Diaoh, then this special should please. It won’t leave you with any kind of side splitting pain, or make your face hurt from laughter. It will however, leave you with a smile at the end. And really, sometimes that’s all you need. read more
11 of 11 episodes seen
The plot revolves around a group of older looking men, who work at a restaurant called "Casetta Dell’orso". Each worker wears eye glasses when they are on duty. And this in fact is what makes the restaurant stand out from the others in Rome. One day the staff gets greeted by a women from America, who in turn comes to them wanting to train with the crew. As the anime progresses, each member of the cast is brought in the spotlight, and gets there own in depth story as to how they ended up working there, along with other interesting tid-bits. It does stay linear in this aspect, but brings so many different unique twists on everyone’s story, that most shouldn’t mind this fact. Now because this anime is more of a slow paced down to earth story, everything in it’s plot is very realistic. And a lot of the drama that is brought to the table comes in the form of relationships, complicated family issues, to mixed feeling among characters. All of this is knitted very well together to make quite a compelling and deep storyline. Even though Nicolette is the main character of the story, they all get well balanced scenes, which is good as there is nobody in this that will ever leave the viewer with a big black question mark as to who they are. So be prepared for lots of dialog in this. Now not everything in this will please viewers. As mentioned earlier, the story is quite slow paced, and there really is no over all big plot to this anime. Simply put, it’s a story about life in a restaurant, and I actually found it quite dissapointing that the restaurant theme wasn’t used to it’s fullest. So don’t expect to get any kind of explanation as to how certain dishes are prepared, as the story is more character driven than anything else. Which isn’t a bad thing really, since they really do turn out to be the backbone of this anime. The ending is quite fitting, and should satisfy most.
Regarding possible offensive material. Ristorante Paradiso contains very little in this aspect. There are occasional suggestive situations, but they are done in a quite tasteful manner, never for show. The only thing I would say that some viewers might find a bit disturbing, is that the main lead female Nicoletta, shows attraction to men that are old enough to be her father.
The music track really shines in this. You get the traditional tracks one would hear if they were in Paris, Italy and of course...Rome. The opening theme is quite relaxing, as is the ending theme, and actually does mix well with it’s environment’s theme. Voice acting is also quite good. All character voice are done with maturity and calm, and really do bring the characters to life. Overall, it’s quite an endearing soundtrack.
This was the only real thing I didn’t like about the anime, it just didn’t feel like the animation was up to par regarding what it could have been. Quite a bit of the color scheme is pretty bland at times. Some may argue that it was done purposely in order to create a certain style to the anime. Regardless though, it still has a nice amount of detail to it. Case in point: being that the cast is of different style ages right? And the artists really worked over time to make sure that the characters looked their appropriate age. All the male characters look like they really are in their 40s and 50s. While others, such as Nicolette, appear to be in their 20’s. So while the animation is by no means pushing any boundaries, it’s still nice to look at, and detailed in the places you would want it to be..
As mentioned earlier, each member gets his or her own spotlighted episode. Considering that this is only an 11 episode series, you wouldn’t expect this to have much depth to it. Surprisingly though it does, and the best compliment I can give the cast, is that you really are able to get into their heads, and with many you can even read their thoughts. They have a good amount of layers to their personality, and you will want to push on in the show just to see why a certain character acts a certain way, as little tid-bits are explained as things progress. There was one draw back to this category though, and that comes in the form of Nicolette herself. At the beginning I was expecting her to really develop over the course of the series, and while she did have a bit of development to her, it really wasn’t much. As she tended to just remain in the background "observing" the other cast of character’s lives, and ended up feeling more like a prop to the series. Even still, a wonderful memorable cast that feel interesting, yet down to earth at the same time.
If you are looking for a deep and relaxing slice of life anime with a nice pace to it, then you will enjoy Ristorante Paradiso. While it might disappoint some that were expecting a series that centers around food, it still has a lot to offer the viewer who can appreciate it's plot and themes. So if you were looking for your next anime entree, then your appetite is about to be fed! read more
12 of 12 episodes seen
Now you might be thinking to yourself that this sort of idea can only come from a title that is rushed and uninspired. However, that is not so with Wandaba Style, as it actually does bring a pretty fun story into the mix. The idea is that a certain young scientist (age 13) want’s to be the first person to make a rocket that is able to travel to the moon. So he enlists the help of a struggling j-pop group called "Mixed Juice", in hopes that together, they can make his idea become a reality. All the while, getting the recognition the group deserve. The first few portions of the series simply come down to the professor attempting to get to the moon. However, it doesn’t stay linear in this matter, as new plot threads are reveled, along with crazy mishaps. And that’s where Wandaba really shines, in it’s "crazy" style of humor. This comes in the form of the professor either messing up with his latest invention, to the girls having a wacky misunderstanding regarding an idea or event. As the story progresses, the ties between the characters become more evident, as pasts and story bits are slowly revealed. Now while this certainly won’t be the most drawn in anime you will ever see. It does do a pretty good job of mixing good character charisma and gags. It also takes a pretty interesting turn towards the end. The singing elements are also used to a good extent, and don't feel tacked on like you would first expect. The girls really do give off the fact that they are a struggling singing group, which is nice. Now it does have it’s flaws too. While the story does have some good humor in it, there are also some repeated jokes and scenes that might annoy some viewers. And the over the top humor won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, as it is pretty "been there done that", especially if you like this style of anime. Again though, what impressed me the most is that for a crazy style comedy anime, it actually does get you involved in the story, which begins to really pick up pace after the half way point. Plus you get some nice emotional and touching elements to it too, along with the humor.
Regarding possible offensive material. "Wandaba Style" does have a pretty fair amount of fan service. This can include the girls having their close ripped off, to being shown in there underwear. It’s certainly not a constant in this series, but does pop up enough times to be mentioned. The dialog on the other hand, is quite clean.
Characters and environments are sharp and clean, with bright colorful visuals. The cast vary from be quite well portioned, to their silly over the top facial expressions. The whole over all feel of this anime’s color scheme can at times feel very 60’s. Such interesting features include a giant Mickey Mouse style glove hand, wacky rockets and other silly art styles, which can at times, give the anime a sort of western style cartoony flavor to it. It’s a series that doesn’t take itself too seriously most of the time, so it shouldn’t be anything too surprising when you see them.
The soundtrack is the strongest point in the anime, as expected from a series that features a j-pop group, you get some pretty catchy songs and beats through out the series. They’re very lively as expected, and put you in a good mood after watching it, especially when regarding the closing song. My only problem with the music, is that songs tended to get repeated in the story, and by the end I was a bit tired of hearing the girls main theme song so much, as they tended to play it a lot during the anime. Voice acting is very solid. The ADV dub is pretty good, and they matched well with the characters. The Japanese audio is the way to go though if you are debating between the two. Everything in it is just so much more nice to listen to, as each actress do each character in a humors way, yet aren’t annoying at the same time.
The cast of characters are quite charming and likable the whole way through, and the girls overreaction to many simple situations will no doubt put a smile on your face. However, they lack any kind of real depth to them at the same time. I was dissapointed that they pretty much remained who they are from the first episode to the end, with not much tid-bits given about their personal life. The characters who do end up having the most depth to them however, are the professor and his assistant/android "Kiku No. 8". As time goes on you end up seeing that these two are more than what they first appear to be, a scene which is especially apparent come the end. So while they won’t be the deepest cast of characters you’ll see, they make up for it with their charm and humor.
If you are in the mood for a fun and wacky ride, then I recommend giving Wandaba Style a try. It might not revolutionize the comedy genre, and some may find the humor to get a bit redundant at times. It’s still never the less a good comedy series to invest your time in, especially if you want one that puts a smile on your face afterwards. read more
1 of 1 episodes seen
Note: The following review will talk about not only the recap special, but also the episodes it covers.
Bakemonogatari - recap special, shows the past events that circle around episodes 1 -5.
The tale revolves around Koyomi Araragi, who has just recently survived a vampire attack, and under certain circumstances gets involved with many things regarding the supernatural (ghosts, spirits and the like). A mysterious girl falls from the sky one day, and his life is never the same afterward. Now if you have never watched the series up until this point then you’re probably thinking there isn’t a whole lot of reason to check this version out, as it only recaps the first five episodes. However, I feel that it could in fact serve a good purpose to both fans of the series, and those who may still be debating on picking it up or not. These recap episodes don’t really contain too much in the way of spoilers, at least not any that are very relevant to the overall plot as of yet. People who have never seen it might be thinking to themselves that a story revolving around ghosts, vampires and other supernatural things, has been run into the ground too much to be of interest. However, every couple of years a company finds a way of doing it differently. And I am happy to say that "Bakemonogatari" is one of these anime titles. Being that the story does revolve around the supernatural, you might think things up to this point were all about action. But no, you would be wrong. The episodes are VERY dialog heavy, and wouldn’t be something you would want to watch without subs (unless you understand Japanese that is). In many of the episodes it all comes down to character discussions. They range from relationship talk, to spirits and creatures, to even talking about one’s personal situation and grief. Most of the inner turmoil and problems that the cast have, have some kind of relation to spiritual creatures, who represent said character's problem. When a form is actually located, it comes down more to a mentality at stopping it, and not with actual brute force. The script writing in this series is very well done, but that isn’t exactly what makes "Bakemonogatari" so special--as it’s not what the story is about, so much as how they present it. Both the plot and dialog are very artistic, even when it comes down to the characters simply talking about things that don’t really have a solid purpose to the storyline. If you have ever seen the "ef" series, then you will feel right at home with this title. Which is fitting, since both are made by the same producers (SHAFT). Even so, it does have it’s faults too, some of the conversations between the characters can feel bloated at times, without a solid purpose in mind. And because of it’s somewhat trippy style in telling a tale, some might also find it to be a bit too drawn out and weird at times. Still, if you are looking for a story that adds a unique twist on how it tells it, then you will enjoy these episodes.
The art in this is really something special, the main focus of the animation is not with the overall picture, as it is so much with the characters themselves. Many times the backgrounds will be quite plain, and many times they won’t stand out much at all. As mentioned before this is a very "artsy" anime, and it tends to not stay on one animation scene for very long. This might annoy some viewers, as it does tend to change its scenery a lot. Many of the scene changes will only show a colored screen with a word or symbol on it, or will have a still image representing what the characters are talking about, or events taking place. It's a "mind over matter" art style.
Soundtrack to this title is really good, it’s the same music that derives from the series. Most of them come in the form of creepy style bleeps and bloops, and really do great at setting the tone for the atmosphere. The opening and closing themes are more on the brighter side than the actual background music. The music in this series does good at complimenting the mood that the company wanted you to feel. Even so though, I wouldn’t really consider it to be a memorable soundtrack, and once you’re done with this recap (and the series), you’ll most likely forget about it. The voice acting is top notch, and all characters match well with their voice actors.
I would say that the characters are pretty deep in their personalities, you really are able to get into their head as the episodes progress. Many of them are not who you think they would be right off the bat. With the exception of Mayoi, most of the main characters talk very seriously in their tone, even when a joke is being played out. Some might find them a bit too calm (or even sleepy) at times, but once again, it fits with the eerie style of the show.
Even for a recap special, I really enjoyed this. It marked all the key points to the story so far, and will keep you entertained. If you are thinking about picking up the series still, this special is a nice taste of how the anime works, without spoiling too much for the viewer. And if you have already seen the episodes up to this point, it’s still a nice refresher course, and could point out something you may have missed before. read more
Aug 11, 2009Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann: Mitee Mono wa Miteen d... (Anime) add
2 of 1 episodes seen
Well since these two episodes take place during the series, it just won’t have the charm from the actual anime, nor do they really fill any kind of gap in the story. They are simply meant to be fun little stories for the Gurren fans.
The first OVA (episode 5.5) shows a few extra things that happened to Kamina and the gang while they were crossing the wilderness. The key point here is that two new faces are lurking in the shadows, who's true motives are unknown to the gang. "Are they friend or foe?" Now don’t expect this episode to have any extreme action in it, in fact it actually plays more along the lines of an actual comedy episode, all done with the same Gurren charm. Though you do get some fun action in it as well. The only real bummer I had with this episode, is that it’s only about 12 minutes in length, it would have been much nicer to have a full episode length. It’s fun, and will put a smile on your face afterward, but it’s a bit too short.
The second OVA (episode 6 - Director’s cut) takes us back to the infamous spa episode, which most fans probably remember from the series. If you were dissapointed at the fact that the original episode contained mostly flashbacks, then you will be happy to learn that this Director’s cut version, is all 100% episode, with all the flashbacks removed. It even has many "uncensored" parts to it. So if you are looking for some fan service, this should satisfy. There are a few niches though. The first one being the obvious--this isn’t exactly a new episode, it’s basically a more fuller version of episode 6. And secondly--considering that it’s suppose to be "uncensored", it doesn’t really go that extreme distance like you would expect. In fact only the male characters actually appear nude in this episode. With the females in somewhat more exotic style scenes, but no nudity from them. So if you were expecting some steamy Yoko scenes, you might be dissapointed. But there are a lot of laughs to be had here too, and I feel that it makes up for it quite nicely with that. Despite these episodes having some small problems, they should still end up leaving you with a smile.
Not really much to say regarding this, it’s the same stylized animation from the series. Characters are colorful and well proportioned, yet they have their own exaggerated features to them. And you also get the trademark goofiness in the art when the comedy is playing key role (ie the characters have huge facial and body movements). If you have never seen the show before, then the art really will stand out for you. It looks like a traditional anime, but has a style all it’s own.
You get the same opening theme from the first part of the anime, with a few extra scenes thrown in from the OVAs. The ending is exactly the same though. Character voices are well matched, and seem to hit the right key notes at the right time. Some of it does come off as a bit "too acted out" in some scenes, but it’s not all that noticeable.
They are still funny, still charming and very fun to watch. Kamina plays more of a comical role in these two OVAs than he probably did in the actual series, and tends to steal the show from the other characters. The supporting cast are all present, but don’t play much of a role in these. Basically they keep all their trademark antics from the anime. If you loved them before, then you will love them again now, and visa-versa of course. It is also interesting to note that two new characters are introduced in this episode. However, there is little to no back story on them, and they never show up again afterwards.
When it comes right down to it, they are enjoyable OVA titles, and still manage to capture the charm from the show. Due to the fact that episode one is short, and episode 2 is simply an expansion of another, not all fans will be pleased. Still, if you liked the series, you owe it to yourself to check these out. While they may not blow you away with anything, they certainly aren’t a waste of time either. read more
51 of 51 episodes seen
If you are no stranger to the "magical girl" genre, then the start up to "Wedding Peach" shouldn’t be anything unfamiliar to you. We start off with a young 15 year old girl named Momoko, who is chosen to fight the forces of evil between the angel world and the devil world, as one of the Love Angels. She is not alone in this however, as she will be joined by devoted allies, trusted friends, and maybe even some she never thought would help. Wedding Peach has quite a lot going for it with it’s plot (despite the fact that it borrows heavily from Sailor Moon). The main heroines, always seem to be caught up in different situations in their day to day lives, most of which end up getting foiled by the forces of evil. This comes in the form of the devil world possessing human beings, or sending out evil monsters to do their bidding. Now the villains in this story aren’t sent just for the sake of causing havoc, they are looking for something called the "Saint Something Four". These four magical marriage items are extremely powerful, and whoever can get their hands on all the pieces will be given great amounts of power. However, they are hidden in different locations throughout the land. So as long as the Love Angels can stop them from obtaining these pieces, the world won’t be taken over. The plot works well enough for a magical girl title, as new information on the overall storyline is revealed at a steady but good pace. Most episodes don’t really lead into the next, unless a key plot point has been reached in the series. And in this, is where I feel Wedding Peach’s greatest weakness in the story lies. Whenever a certain key plot point is reached in the show, it seems to happen more at random than leading into any kind of build up. Without saying any spoilers, I can best describe it as this: picture you’re watching your favorite anime series. After many many episodes of waiting for your favorite hero to obtain something he or she needs, it is finally obtained and celebration follows. But, let’s pretend that instead of obtaining this item by defeating a foe, or doing it in a more stylized way, they instead have the main hero find simply by accident, or just have said item appear out of nowhere. In that mediphore, is the best way I can describe how some of the plots in Wedding Peach come into play. There is little to any build up, or even clues for the viewer, since some seem to happen at random (not all though). Fight scenes usually end up with the girls struggling against a foe, then using the same magic moves each time against an enemy, which can make the fight scenes get repetitive. To Wedding Peach’s credit though, there are good romance elements going on between many of the characters. These can lead into bitter rivalries, heart breaking misunderstandings, and deep romance twists. The Wedding theme doesn't play as big a part as some might think, but in fact "love" plays more of a role. As the villains can sense what is called "love waves" from any human that shows any kind of remote affection. There are episodes that feature couples getting married and what not, but they don't happen that often. The storyline takes many curves in it’s plot, and many of them are quite unexpected, and actually do play a big part in the story later on. The ending to this was quite good, as all loose ends are tied. So you don’t have to worry about going through the series only to be dissapointed in the end. Overall, Wedding Peach has it’s ups and downs, and most viewers fill find that their disappointment will walk hand in hand with their enjoyment. Not all episodes are winners, but they defiantly have their good points.
As far as possible offensive material goes, Wedding Peach has little to none. Some adult jokes appear every blue moon or so, but rarely ever. All the character relationships are kept clean, and there is no blood in this series. Some of the monsters could scare the little ones, but this anime is nothing past a PG rating.
Wedding Peach first aired in the mid 90’s, and despite the colors coming off as a bit washed out by today’s standards, the series itself was just beautiful for it’s time. Character animations run smoothly, magical attacks are quite nice to look at, and you overall get a nice array of color schemes in this. Cast members have good distinctions from one another too, and have some pretty good facial expressions. The only thing I didn’t like in the animation, was the actual monster design. They were garbage! The main henchmen that appear through out the series work well enough, but the subordinate monsters just come off as silly, and most times unimaginative. Such examples include a door with a face, and a small clown with a little hat. Most aren't even human size. The battle outfits are created with nice colorful detail and flare, but they also have different styles of Wedding Dresses that they wear before hand in order to heal the monsters. Not a whole lot of detail is put into the latter, but they still look nice.
You get a nice mix of high beat magical girl sounds in this series. The opening and closing themes change twice through both seasons. The first two opening and closing titles really match well with the wedding theme, and you of course get the traditional wedding instrumental played everytime the preview for the next episode starts. Background music isn’t really much in the way of special, but you do get some nice lite hearted tracks throughout. When deciding which version to watch (sub or dub), I would defiantly go with the sub version. They feel more natural and easier to listen to, because the English actors can get on the corny side. Especially when the dub version has some of the cast featured in *shudders* accents!
This was probably my favorite thing about Wedding Peach. The main cast interact well with one another, and get off some pretty funny lines. Friendship plays key role in this series, and the Love Angels certainly have big hearts in this department. Always willing to help get one another out of a jam. We have Momoko, who typically is a bit on the clumsy side, to Yuri, the well mannered of the bunch. Expect to see quite a bit of romance in this series, most of it starts out as baby crushes between the cast members, but later on in the anime develop into something beautiful. The only negative things are--there weren’t many staple supporting characters, and some of the cast didn’t get enough back story to them. Even still though, they were quite a lovable cast.
If you are a magical girl fan, then I think Wedding Peach should be given a chance at. Its ups and downs in the storyline might turn off some viewers, which doesn’t make it a series for everyone. But if given the chance, I feel many people will get caught up in it’s character development and romance themes. So while Wedding Peach might not be the big bash of all weddings, it never the less still remains a fun one. read more
13 of 13 episodes seen
The plot begins with Haruo, a seemingly ordinary guy at school, nothing special about him at all, just pretty much your average student. One day he happens to see a beautiful girl on his way to class, who turns out to be the newest transfer student of the school, named Ayumi. Because of her beauty she quickly becomes the most popular girl in school. So...why in the world would she want Haruo??!! Well, it turns out that is exactly who she wants, but, not for the motives one would expect, she definitely has a hidden agenda. And as it turns out, she is not the only one who wants him (all of the main female cast members have some sort of magical power). So as you can tell from this little summary, what this anime is, is in fact a harem title. Now don't let that frighten you away from at least giving this one a try, because even though this anime follows the harem formula to a "T", it also has one great redeeming factor, and that is comedy! There are a good number of adult themed jokes in this, a long with slap stick humor, which during a lot of scenes can get pretty "tongue and cheek." For example, there is an episode where Ayumi puts on these cursed style panties. That can only be taken off by Haruo. Oh and did I mention that this particular pair of underwear can talk? Yep, it goes there. The other supporting cast (most of which are female) also help in the humor. Most of them see each other as rivals of course, and this is where the "tongue and cheek" humor plays a role in, so be prepared to hear them call each other some pretty nasty things. So the main point of the story is for Ayumi to get Haruo to fall in love with her, as she needs him to solve her own problem, which rumor has it, only he can do. As the story progress, and the fact that this anime deals heavily in magic, you will see other unworldly creatures come into play, such as ghosts and other wandering spirits. But again, it is not done in a kind of serious manner, with the exception of the last few episodes. And on that note, despite the fact that this is a harem title, the ending to it is actually quite satisfying, and done with a unique twist that most probably won't see coming. The humor aside, Magikano does suffer from being your standard paint by numbers harem title, so don't be expecting to see anything different if you are a fan of this genre, as it is very strait forward in it's harem way. However, that still doesn't change the fact that this series has it where it counts...humor! If you are just looking for a series with a good sense of humor, then I think you will find the story quite charming in that right.
As far as possible offensive material goes. Magikano does have adult themed humor in it, both with the dialog and visuals. There are a few scenes that imply about sex and other adult related humor. This also comes in the form of the female cast members dressed in tight revealing clothes on some occasions. It's nothing past a PG-13 rating though.
The spell effects in the animation is really quite an eye candy, as various characters have different style of powers. The visuals are quite clean, pretty well detailed and sharp. The character design is a little disappointing though, as the cast looks pretty lack luster when compared to other anime titles. And many characters look like they were copy and pasted from one another--Characters do move with good fluidity though. Quite a colorful series, it just lacks a little in the character design, and needs more distinction. Facial expressions play key role with many of the characters, which is nicely animated and quite silly/funny to look at.
The opening and closing theme are pretty darn catchy. The intro has a nice magical girl style feel to it, and the ending has a nice "get up and party" beat to it. Both keep the same lyrics the whole way through, but the animation on them changes as new cast members are introduced. The Japanese and English voice cast are pretty well done, though the ADV dub does have a few parts where the actresses get a bit on the exaggerated side with their lines, making it sound a but corny on some parts. Still, they did match the characters well in each of their roles.
Personalities play key role in any good anime title, regardless of what it's theme is. The Magikano cast has some hit and misses in this department, as they can sometimes come off as a bit exaggerated at times. They enjoy getting these angry looks to them and screaming at one another quite a bit. The character's likes come in a variety of ways-- We have Chiaki, a girl with an unhealthy addiction to dieting (yet she eats like a horse), to Fuyuno, a little girl with an even unhealthier love for money, to Maika, a girl with a brother complex towards Haruo (I am sure you know where that's going). I have to say that I liked the cast they had overall, even if some of them felt like their theme was only there to mask the fact that there really wasn't much to some of them.
Magikano, I feel, is a good title to watch when you are simply looking for some good humor, and you will be laughing on many occations. Hardcore harem fans may be dissapointed that this title does little to anything new or deep with it's theme, which doesn't make it a series for everyone. Even still, it's quite an entertaining little comedy title. And sometimes in life, all you need...is a good laugh! read more
13 of 13 episodes seen
Taking place in the near future, wrestling is not what it use to be. Gone are the days where two opponents would get in the ring, and fight each other hand to hand until the other was pinned. In this era fighters have now dawned metal suits, which strengthens their moves ten times over, thus calling it "Neo Wrestling!" Going into this anime, I was kind of expecting the whole "wrestling idea" to play more of a side story, thus making the anime feel gimmicky. But no, in truth it actually concentrates on the wrestling theme quite a bit...maybe even too much! So what you see is what you get, the anime follows this formula to a T. In center stage we have little Miku, star of the all female fighting team called the Pretty Four. The main bulk of the story follows the girls as they take on opponents (which usually happens at the end of most episodes) until they can make it to the top, all along meeting new friends and fierce rivals. What makes the anime fun is it’s mix of funny bits, drama and action. It doesn’t surpass anything while it does this, but is there none the less. Determination and team work plays key into each fight, as matches take place in a "four on four" tag match. Now because of the metal suits involved, don’t expect to see much in the way of authentic looking wrestling moves. Most of them are exaggerated, what with super jumps, power punches and the like (if you have ever seen Angelic Layer, then they look something like that). There are a few plot twists that take place near the end that can be quite unexpected too. Most opponents don’t play fair in the very least, and you will see quite a bit of cheating and underhanded deals going though. The main characters transform into their metal suits much like you would see in your tradition magical girl anime. While the story does remain very strait forward with it’’s idea, it also doesn’t do it in a repetitive manner either. As each episode spotlights a new problem for the team to over come, whether it be stopping the underhanded deeds done by their enemies, to simply encouraging one another to stay strong. There is little to no romance in this, and the ones that are present are handled very lightly. One of the problems I had with this anime, is with it’s actual ending. Which takes place in a "1 on 1" match, which I found to be odd since the overall anime is centered on teamwork. As a whole, some viewers might find it’s linear wrestling plot to be too strict to the source to enjoy, but I think fans of action anime may want to check this out, as many of the fights are fun to watch.
Metal Fighter Miku shouldn’t contain anything that viewers would find offensive. There is no blood in this, nor is there any fan service. Of course there is violence as far as wrestling goes, but it’s only done in a mildly over the top manner.
Taking into consideration that this anime was made almost 19 years ago, it goes without saying that it doesn’t live up to anything by today’s standards. However for it’s time it really is a well detailed and colorful series. Fights are animated smoothly, with hardly any kind of re-hashed scenes used over and over again (battle suit transformations aside). Backgrounds are the only thing that don’t live up to the rest of the art, they can look quite simplistic and dull at times. If you have ever seen a series called "Cat Girl Nuku Nuku" then you will notice many resemblances between the two.
Nice tracks play throughout the series, they feel quite dated, but still have catchy beats to them. The opening and ending tracks don’t feel quite as old however, both are pretty high up beat tunes that match well with the girls personalities. Both are sung by the same vocalist too. As far as the background tracks go there really isn’t much to say. They do their jobs for what is going on in the anime, but lack any kind of really memorable tunes, with the exception of the main track that plays when the girls are about to enter the ring. Good voice overs through out the series, though the dub version does leave a little to be desired.
They are a mixed baggage. Most of them are well thought out and do have a "wrestler’s attitude" about them (a good thing). The character that ended up intrigued me the most was the coach--Eiichi. He was quite the hard individual to figure out at first, they don’t actually try to hide his past from the viewers, but they do hide enough of it to make most people tilt their head in interest when they see him. Miku has everything you would want in a leader. She doesn’t show boat, works hard at what she does, and always gives it here all. As the story progress you will find out that she does have her weakness that must be overcome, which is nice as far as character development goes. The other girls were a little more disappointing, they never really molded past their whole "teamwork" idea, and some such as Sayaka, you never get any really knowledge of at all. The rivals and enemies can suffer from the same thing, with the exception of a few of them, who actually do show their true selves to the audience later on. The characters who were important to the story were great, it's just a shame that some never got the attention they deserved.
Despite it's strait forward plot, "Metal Fighter Miku" serves up just the right amount of action that should keep most viewers satisfied. Fun characters, interesting battles and a nice mix of wrestling and dialog are all part of this package. Because of it's linear storyline though, not all will be able to stay interested, and while it may be not pin any of the competition out there, it does put up a very good fight in the ring. read more