This my first time ever writing a review here on MAL. I felt the need to write one because this show is by far the most underrated show of the season. The story is original, the characters are great, and the artwork is beautiful. There is quite a bit of action in Zetsuen no Tempest but it's the dialogue that will keep you on the edge of your seat, especially in the later episodes. It's what happens when there is no real "bad guy" and both sides are desperately fighting for what they truly and honestly believe is right. These shows are always so much
more intense and so much better than your typical "I'm doing this because I'm evil and you're here to stop me because you're good." shows. I highly recommend this show to everyone.
“What’s past is prologue.” - The Tempest - William Shakespeare
Nothing could say more about Blast of Tempest than Shakespeare’s The Tempest which is heavily referenced throughout the series. Blast of Tempest is a story about overcoming entrapment in the past, both figuratively and literally.
One thing that can be said about Blast of Tempest is that it follows a logical premise that manages to feel legitimately inspired despite its fair share of twists. Even though the story involves magic, the series defines a strong logical framework that both empowers and entraps its characters.
Above all, our character’s personal history is a major factor in the
series. It drives Mahiro on a vengeful path to determine who killed his sister and weighs down Yoshino to the point of near-detachment. It is only when these characters are able to accept fate and focus that they are able to allow a tragic event to become the means to a better end (saving the world). Moreover, past as a general influence is extremely well-realized. Events in the past, including Hakaze’s imprisonment, Aika’s death, and even further back to the formation of the Tree of Exodus as a means to end the Tree of Genesis’s purpose in resetting humanity are central to the plot.
Furthermore, the notion of order and chaos is thematically prevalent in the series. Even though the Tree of Genesis represents order, it is only with the chaos represented by the Tree of Exodus that humanity can thrive and even exist. Despite the resurgence of crime and inequality after the dissolution of the Tree of Genesis, it is easy to understand the necessity in the action and why the order imposed by the Tree of Genesis would eventually deem all of humanity unrighteous.
The only major flaw to Blast of Tempest‘s story is that it tends to use its characters as if they are actors in a play (perhaps intentionally). Each character plays his part, often without question. This is extremely noticeable in Aika’s casual acceptance of her fate despite what clearly would have been a difficult decision – but this may actually speak more to her character than to the show’s tendency to have its actors fill a role.
Character development is very important in Blast of Tempest - and all of its main characters, Hakaze, Yoshino, Mahiro and Aika, are a strong basis to the show’s central themes despite their differing personas. What enforces their strength is their intelligence – even in Mahiro’s case – the characters carefully and cleverly plan their actions.
Hakaze is a strong female lead that is open and direct, while sometimes being too upfront and occasionally becoming distracted by desire. What defines Hakaze the most is that, despite her attunement to the Tree of Genesis, she is far from unquestioning. Her actions are often fueled by her desire to seek her own path, even with opposition or without knowing the consequences. It makes her into a character nearly embracing chaos despite the order surrounding her – which accentuates her foil in Aika.
Aika, though appearing frail, is strong to a fault. Her character embraces the ideology of Exodus far too unconditionally which is but testament to her acceptance with being an actress in a play. She often quotes Hamlet and The Tempest because she feels that her only goals have already been previously scripted and she must play to those ideals.
Mahiro, on the other hand, represents another extreme of chaos with his absolute path of vengeance. His early ambitions are simply to avenge the death of Aika, but this actually drives him to greatness because of her involvement in much more crucial matters. When he is freed from this path, his goal has actually become to enact a plan to save the world. Mahiro is a renegade without being overly reckless and ambitious to a point where he is not clouded.
Yoshino, for a large majority of the show, is very detached. Aika’s death had an opposing effect on him in that he nearly lost desire to function after her passing. Even though he is tied down by her loss, he thinks clearly and keeps Mahiro in check when he is pushing himself too far. It’s important to note that Yoshino is the last character to resolve his past as a lesson in history, because he is too entrapped by it. Hakaze’s confessions to him cause him to break because he is not ready to continue his life until all others’ problems have been resolved.
Blast of Tempest is breathtaking visually and its usage of classical pieces in its soundtrack is excellently done. By now, this is what we expect from BONES, so it isn’t too unbelievable that this show lives up to BONES’s capability to generate quality in its production value. Particularly of note are the show’s excellent action scenes that accentuate brilliant animation along with well-utilized classical music.
While Blast of Tempest occasionally falls short of absolute excellence in its willingness to allow its characters to fill roles, it presents a story of past entanglements that is very well-realized and non-contradictory with a cast that synergizes their differing viewpoints.
Zetsuen no Tempest is an action/supernatural/shonen anime by studio Bones, known for its previous works Eureka Seven, Fullmetal Alchemist, Star Driver, etc. Tempest starts out as a very promising shonen anime with interesting characters and an elaborate setup in a world full of turmoil. Preferring to skip the dramatic buildup, Tempest throws you right into the action and chaos right from the very first episode. Its steady pacing keeps the viewers on the edge of their seat and eager for more of the story. It’s too bad that Tempest doesn’t keep this up for the whole series. Halfway through, the show takes a serious dip
in quality in just about every area, aside from maybe animation and sound.
And it’s a shame because Zetsuen no Tempest had so much potential, but it falls flat on its face instead. But let’s talk about the good of this show first. The art and animation are top notch. Studio Bones pulled no punches when it came to the gorgeous animation and character designs. The battles are fast, fluid, and intense, going hand in hand with the spectacular and vivid wheel of colors that enhance the magical effects. The character designs are stylish and unique, with no two characters looking too much alike. Another small little detail that was well done was the character’s clothing. Each character’s various clothing looks like something straight out of a teen fashion magazine; very funky and stylish. Small artistic details are also added in the character’s hair and accessories. If I were rating this anime solely based on its art and animation, it would easily score a nine at the very least. Unfortunately, I did not, and I won’t.
Now on to the not-so-good of Zetsuen no Tempest, which is basically everything else. Perhaps the weakest aspect of the show is its story. The story starts out with Hakaze Kusaribe, the princess of a clan of mages, contacting Fuwa Mahiro to help her extinguish an uprising instigated by her followers. Left stranded on an island by said followers, they can only communicate through magic. Hakaze promises to help Mahiro find his sister’s killer in exchange for his help. Mahiro’s friend, Takigawa Yoshino comes along for the ride, and together the three aim to prevent the Kusaribe clan from awakening the tree of Exodus, which would subsequently bring destruction to the entire world.
The entire story pays homage to Shakespeare’s works, namely The Tempest and Hamlet. For some reason, the story feels it needs to remind you of this quite frequently, as it seems every few minutes someone is throwing out a Shakespeare quote. There’s no subtlety in its delivery, and the quotes have little meaning to the plot or the characters. It seems they simply threw in several quotes in order to make the script seemed more grand and classy. Instead, it ended up making the entire anime sound incredibly pretentious. It could be argued that the two differing plays were being quoted to signal that this anime could either have a happy or tragic ending, leaving the viewer to wonder in anticipation. But not only is that grasping at straws, it gives the writers more credit than they probably deserve.
Now to be fair, the first half of the series was pretty good. It was standing on shaky ground but it was still quite good. It may have been standard shonen anime fare “save the world with magical powers, stop the bad guys” but it had an interesting enough twist to keep it afloat. The characters were interesting; they had clear cut motivations that at least made some sense. The plot moved about at a comfortable pace with just enough action and character development shimmied into each episode. The rules of the universe made sense. All that was completely ruined by its mess of a second half.
The plot begins to contradict the rules it established in its first half. It makes no effort to even make sense of Hakaze’s ability to time travel for a second and third time. It presents a ridiculous plot twist that makes even less sense and gives a sort of barbaric edge to Aika’s character that the other characters don’t even bat an eye at. And worst of all, romance is shoehorned in for the sake of throwing in some aspects of a corny school love comedy. Hakaze even alludes to this in a hilarious 4th wall breaking internal monologue.
Perhaps one of the most disappointing aspects of the show is the degradation of its characters. Yes that’s right, the very characters that made the show go backwards as it drags on. Perhaps the character that does it the most is Hakaze Kusaribe. She is initially presented as a strong heroine, with an arrogant edge that is backed up by her standing as the most powerful mage in the clan. She is cunning and unflinching, yet kind and caring when she needs to be. But of course that is all negated when she falls in love.
Yes, LOVE! She becomes clumsy, indecisive, and silly at the first hints of love. Her initial goal was to prevent the destruction of the world and take control of her clan once again. But when she falls in love, she leaves the fate of her clan in the hands of the guy who betrayed her and sent her to an island to die. All so she could travel freely with her love interest. Later, she wants to save the world simply for her love. To say anything else about her silly love driven mindset would mean spoilers, so to be vague, pay attention to what she says when she travels across time a second time. It is so unbelievably silly, bordering on completely idiotic. She goes from a strong heroine to someone whose sole reason for existing and acting is for her love.
Maybe it wouldn’t be that bad it we had some substantial buildup to the relationship, coupled with proof of an established and long-lasting bond that could never be broken. That, and if her feelings were actually reciprocated. Then it would be quite romantic and heroic that Hakaze would do anything for her love. But instead, her actions are based on a silly schoolgirl crush (that quite literally springs out of nowhere) and nothing more, making her actions and motivations seem incredibly idiotic.
Fuwa Mahiro and Takigawa Yoshino are perfect foils, making for a very interesting relationship between the two heroes. They get a significant amount of development in the first half of the show through a series of flashbacks, some of which involve Aika. Brash and arrogant Mahiro is the brawn of their duo, while the manipulative and analytical Yoshino is the brains. Their relationship is one of the most interesting ones of the series. How two young men who are so different from each other could end up cooperating so willingly and becoming the best of friends is a real mystery. But their actions in the second half become a bit odd to say the least. Not only that, but they show little emotion when finding out the truth behind Aika’s death, despite the fact that they are the most important people to her. In fact, their lack of emotion is prevalent even in the first half. They are just normal high school boys, not hardened soldiers. Yet their reactions to the destruction of their home certainly don’t give any hints to that.
Then there is Fuwa Aika, one of the most confusing characters. She’s already dead by the beginning of the series, yet still plays an important role in the story. She’s the motivation for Yoshino and Mahiro’s actions and appears in numerous flashbacks. Her character is described in the anime as having a “horrible personality.” That’s not even the half of it. Her development at the tail end of the series hints at a facet of her personality that is far more barbaric, border lining on psychotic. The rest of the side characters are mostly just there for decoration. They are lively personalities to either spice things up or be used as a convenient plot device to move the story along.
Now don’t get me wrong, Zetsuen no Tempest is not wholly unwatchable. There is plenty of enjoyment to be had watching this series, especially during the first half. It’s just too bad that Bones screwed up the story and characters so hard during the second half that it irredeemably sours the entire series. The character’s motivations during the second half make little to no sense. And trying to piece together why the characters are doing what they’re doing gives way to the realization that these characters are acting like total idiots. The plot twist during the second half was also ridiculous, giving the viewer little justification for WHY things had to be this way. Not to mention the implausibility of the situation based purely on the rules set by the anime.
Zetsuen no Tempest is a great watch if you turn off your brain and just enjoy it for what it is: Your “only very slightly above average until the second half of the show” shonen anime. Anybody looking for anything more won’t get much enjoyment out of this anime.
How should I say this... This anime was one of the best that I've seen. Whenever I have nothing to watch, I would turn to Zetsuen no Tempest (Blast of the Tempest/ The Civilization Blaster). The ending was perfect, the story line was amazing, but the best of all were the characters.
Let me go into detail...
Story: The story was put together in a great yet questionable way. There were many parts of the anime that could be related to the famous works of Shakespeare. With plot twists that would leave you confused, the story was never boring. The twisted tale of love, hate, revenge and
a touch of magic was most definitely satisfying especially how the ending wrapped up the entire story. I sincerely wish that they would make a sequel.
Art: The art was satisfying, it clearly showed details in the magic shields and barriers. They point that stood out the most for me were the eyes. The characters eyes showed their emotions so clearly that they sent shivers down my spine, how they would dull or brighten depending on the emotions being conveyed.
Sound: The music chosen for this anime was.... Fabulous. The violin solos with the varying volumes matched the pace of the show and the suspense in the best fashion. The opening and endings weren't boring and they definitely didn't reveal a lot about the story. The upbeat openings shows the action and the more aggressive emotions in the show whereas the slower themes in the endings portrays the more negative and deeper feelings.
Character: Gosh, all of the characters were so perfect. They each played a huge role in the story but I think I should be more specific. Takigawa Yoshino is my favorite character, he is so mysterious and he definitely is a major character. He is referred as Horatio in some parts of the anime. His tale of not being able to grieve for the one he loves is heart breaking, how he shows great deduction skills and how he seems so innocent is so twisted and yet it fits the story perfectly. Fuwa Mahiro is the rich and feared character. His feelings played a large role, I find his motives very amusing throughout the plot. Yoshino and Mahiro are very... different characters compared to the cliches that show up nowadays. When you expect them to do something, they do the complete opposite. But what scares and surprises me the most is the lack of response from the two of them, no matter what they can always appear calm.
Overall, I ranked this anime a 9/10. Although I would say that it's closer to a 9.5/10. XD
Yet, in some ways, they always seem to come back from the past and continue to be part of your lives. It's like when you go through a photo album and you see that one picture which strikes you the most. You take out that picture and examines it carefully and take a trip down memory lane. However, in this series, that memory lane isn't a happy memory. No, in fact, it's one ride you wish you'd never had taken because from that event, things are never the same again.
Zetsuen no Tempest (also known as Blast of Tempest) is an
anime series adapted from the manga of the same name handled by Bones. The studio is already known for some of their other works with the supernatural/super power themes such as Full Metal Alchemist, Darker than Black, and Star Driver. Their latest title in their line of evolution of works is this little gem. Written by Kyou Shirodaira, the series follows the aftermath involving lives of two best friends after the events of a tragic past. To uncover the mysteries of the past, they seek the help of a powerful magician and with their help might find the answer they are looking for. At the same time, it's up to the duo to stop a mysterious clan on the horizon to prevent the end of the world.
Sounds all intriguing and mind bobbling right? Well, that's what it seems at first especially with the rather confusing pilot episode...
On the surface, there are many questions that seems to need answers not only revolving for the main protagonists but for ourselves as well. It's no surprise there is so much mystery involved either considering the author of the series is also involved in another mystery title, Spiral: The Bonds of Reasoning. The pilot episode suggests this with introduction of the main characters and a small glimpse of their mysterious past. Curiously enough, we also see the “mage in the barrel” (as the pilot episode suggests) that may make us scratch our heads a bit more. In fact, we can even see blood and tragedy already from the backgrounds. Furthermore, there seems to be a barrage of butterflies roaming in the air as well as the monotonic speeches from the main protagonists. To add to the package, we have some action including a dark haired beauty, shounen-style action gags, and a seemingly civilization that is in ruins for God-knows-what reasons with a touch of magic. All sound mind bobbling, doesn't it? For some reason, it's how the series begin and towards the ends it shows the dark revelation of a tragedy. In order to embrace on what's to come, it's imperative to watch the series with some insight and with your brains focused on more than just the pretty visuals.
Oh but visuals itself doesn't just represent Zetusen no Tempest. It's a bit more than that. For fans of Shakespeare, this could be a delight of those into his literature. As a matter of fact, a few of the dialogues and characters may represent his works themselves. For example, the term “Tempest” could be a homage of Shakespeare's work of “The Tempest”, which was assumed to be one of his last creations. The themes from that play such as an island setting, magic, and those bits of romance suggests this and be converted into modern times. It's quite appealing to watch though as most of us who attends those boring English classes at high school and sleeping through discussions (you know who you are) might get a pleasant surprise at this series. If not, well then, tough break.
The plot of the series seems to be quite attractive not only with the mysterious backgrounds but also the way it is presented. The Tree of Exodus seems to play a prominent role to determine the fate of the world by the way everyone tries to learn and awaken its power. It can also be implied that the Tree of Exodus may be a key to unlock the main protagonists' past tragedies and the truth they are looking for. Nevertheless, it is definitely important since everyone wishes to get to it before the others. The mysteries surrounding the plot seems also revolve around the purpose and true origins of that tree. Why was it there? What is its power? And how did it came to be are just a few of many questions that the viewers may ask themselves when progressing through this series. There also seems cases of government conspiracies and conflicts between clans with its fellow mages. All of this spells out the word confusion (it sure did for me!) in the first half of the series.
There are also various flashbacks played throughout the series from the viewpoint of Mahiro related to the case of a main character. She is in fact already dead prior to the series but maintains a strong after-presence with her backgrounds and the mysteries that resulted her death. Plus, there is peach haired princess Hakaze who is crafty, resourceful, and often likes to play mini mind games with the antagonist, and at times with Mahiro and Yoshino. Bored much? Well, probably from being stranded on that island for an extended period of time. In fact, she has her own little secret that gets revealed soon and that itself is a mystery. Nonetheless, the plot twists and various sequences are crafted carefully in order to not go off track and often makes viewers question themselves on what's next. That's where the thriller part comes in. It is thrilling with some of the surprises but at other times, just cliched or even predictable. However, it should be no surprise that Mahiro clearly wants revenge expressed by the look of his face each time his past is reminded. He wants vengeance for his tragic past and he'll stop at nothing to achieve it. Mahiro desire for revenge spells out his determination and what he wants. Yet, there's a point to be said here. Even if he achieves his goal of revenge, the past won't change. The dead don't just get back and walk again.
The series maintains a small cast of characters rather than a whole all-star ensemble. The two main male protagonists, Mahiro and Yoshino seems to resemble a reflection of William Shakespeare's famous works, Hamlet and Romeo and Juliet respectively. If we look at it carefully, Mahiro seeks revenge for his tragic past similar to Prince Halmet from the play. Mahiro struggles to avenge the death of his family while at times becomes irrational in the way of him doing things. On the other hand, there's Yoshino who seems to allude the character Romeo. In Shakespeare's famous play, Romeo and Juliet, Romeo loses someone they hold dear to their heart. The result of that loss becomes a tragedy in what seems to be a forbidden love story from his work. Behind the scenes of all this drama is the girl Aika who despite her lack of a physical presence in the series seems to influence it more than anything. Although she doesn't technically make a physical appearance in the show in its present storyline, viewers can clearly see that she is a special individual to both the main protagonists. As a matter of fact, even Hakaze is curious about her (despite not seemingly know who she is) after being acquainted with the main protagonists. From my viewpoint, Aika seems to represent a girl with a mysterious personality with a manipulative state of mind.
The antagonist of the series, Samon also has a mysterious way of doing his things. In particular, he seeks out the Tree of Exodus with his clan but at the same time seems to want to prevent the destruction of the world with his own ideologies. Behind that suit also seems to lie an insecure individual even with the protection of one of the most elite of those mages from the series.
As being action, fantasy, and shounen all at once, expect some action throughout the series. The way is presented is in a magical way that although lacks strategy focuses more on morality even doing the occasional dialogues between the fight scenes. However, this doesn't last too long. The fight scenes are significantly toned down later on and hell, even eradicated later on from the show. It goes from action packed to lengthy dialogue that almost seems like reading a textbook. The certain shift of sequences from saving the world to speeches toned me off a bit especially when one moment, there seems to be cool action with an apocalyptic presentation. Then, the next moment it shifts to long dragged out speeches about morality, identity, and more mysteries. The speeches themselves seems to be a bit confusing and not surprisingly enough has Mahiro voice his desire to take revenge AGAIN. The way the characters speak in some of the later dialogues also seems repetitive and digs a bigger hole to the mystery itself with more and more bizarre revelations.
In terms of artwork, Zetsuen no Tempest has a well crafted image of portraying its various scenes. The art directors makes most of the visuals appealing that gets to the point with the themes of the series. In fact, most of the palates and crafted visuals represents the civilization, the tragic scenes, flashbacks, paradise, etc. The characters' designs are also visually represented well especially Aika who has a sense of beauty in her manipulative ways. The series even attempts some jokes with its visuals such as the snickers bar. There some bits of fan service mainly involving around Hakaze by the way she dresses on the island during wet days. But it's really not too much in my opinion.
The soundtrack of the series has many Shakespearean like rhythm to them. It should not be a surprise though given the themes of the series. Kazuhiro Wakabayashi (Soul Eater, Wolf's Rain, xxxHolic) orchestrates many of the music scores well and develop that sense of mysterious atmosphere in many episodes. In fact, the eerie soundtrack and factors with the dialogues matches well with the rhythms. The opening song, "Spirit Inspiration" by Nothing's Carved In Stone from the first half has a strong representation in the sense of what the series may be potential be about. All the main characters as well as some of the supporting characters are presented along with potential conflicts. The first ED song, “happy endings" is presented by Kana Hanazawa who does quite a nice job with her voice. The song shows many of the more metamorphic images involving the main characters as well as the butterflies as seen throughout many times in the series. She also happens to voice one of the main characters in the series, Aika.
All in all, Zetsuen no Tempest represents a modern style mystery with some ancestry blood of William Shakespearean work bought to life. The life of one of the main characters no longer exists and that set off many of the conflicts. The conflicts from this series are quite a twist with the various plot holes and surprises. It can be thrilling even with the dialogues but at times, it can also be a bit bothersome. It's a mysterious series to me and should be considered a watch.
Zetsuen no tempest was one of the anime that had me waiting for each episode. A series I'd probably have seen all together if I hadn't been watching it as it was being aired. And so, this review is after seeing 7 episodes of the series. I might update it if I feel the need to, but as for now, this is my opinion of the series.
"Yoshino, Why did Aika have to die this way? It's been ten months and they don't have any leads. Nothing left behind.. no witnesses.. They don't even know if the killer was acting alone. The task force hardly does
anything anymore. It's absurd. It makes no sense..."
"Then, what will you do about this absurdity? Find her killer and punish them yourself?"
"Yeah, that's it... I'll do whatever it takes to have everything make sense again!"
Following his sister's mysterious murder, Fuwa Mahiro sets out to find her killer and avenge her death. Then three years later, he returns to his hometown and chances upon his childhood friend Takigawa Yoshino, who doesn't know what to think when his best friend uses magic to save his life, and starts talking about mages, an ancient magic clan, the princess stranded on a distant island and a strange phenomenon that can destroy the world. And yet, Yoshina can't help but believe what he's being told.
The story of this anime is the kind that tends to keep the viewers in the dark. The facts are clearly explained. The magic system is not very complicated, but doesn't seem to be created halfway through either. But it's difficult to understand the characters' intentions. They do become a little clearer as their pasts are revealed. But they're mostly unpredictable. The random Shakespearen quotes add a tinge of drama which goes very well with the story, and they don't feel out of place. I'm not a huge fan of Shakespeare but I do feel like reading a little more of his stuff after watching it.
And so, I'll give the story an 8. Not extraordinary, but done quite well. The anime seems to focus more on the characters.
Even though most of the main characters were introduced very early in the show(the first episode, actually), there is very little known about them. There is a lot of mystery about both Mahiro and Yoshino's relation with Aika(the girl who was murdered), and they both themselves don't really come off as 'friends'. Still, they come to the other's rescue when it matters and seem to get along well, despite their conflicting personalities.
But the most striking thing is Mahiro and Yoshino both are not the kind of guys you'd imagine saving the world. Being ex-delinquents, they do have some experience with fights, but a one-minded revenge crazed guy and an easy going person who seems okay with everything wouldn't be my choice. In contrast to most protagonists, Yoshino actually enjoys being the hero, and the thought of saving the world he hates, which is quite refreshing. Then there's Aika herself. The little that is revealed about her from the flashbacks did make it clear that she was a woman that knew what she wanted, and didn't let anyone else in on it.
All in all, it's very engaging knowing more about the characters. 9/10
----ANIMATION AND MUSIC----
The animation is pretty decent. The fighting scenes and magic effects are nicely done. The expressions also come off well. The present feels vivid but the flashbacks have a distant feel to them. It's easy to immediateley differentiate them(the fact that the flashbacks have Aika aside). And the quality of the animation is the same for all episodes. The music is good and suits the show. And I don't see myself skipping the opening or ending song anytime soon. 8/10
OVERALL: I'm enjoying the anime a lot. The story is neither too fast paced, nor too slow. The show has a lot to offer, so it's definitely worth a shot. It has a dramatic feel to it, but that is also not overdone. The first episode pretty much reflects the style of the entire anime. And it only gets better from there on.
The following review is essentially a salty rambling involving a show no one's watched and a particularly egregious cinema sin: "quote dropping".
Nothing grinds my gears more than a highly superficial anime that pretentiously throws around Shakespeare quotes with no apparent purpose or meaning. No, it doesn't emphasize the show's dramatic storytelling, nor does it contribute to the themes (or lack thereof) that the show attempts to present. Rather, shows that arbitrarily drop quotes from popular novelists, psychologists, or philosophers (e.g. Psycho-Pass and Perfect Insider) for no other reason than to feign intelligence are simply insulting.
Zetsuen no Tempest, a 2012 anime purportedly inspired by Shakespeare's dramas,
bases its characters and plot on plays such as The Tempest, Romeo and Juliet, and Hamlet. However, if you take away the frivolous and out-of-context quote dropping, you wouldn't recognize the resemblance. Strip away the superficial "homage" entirely and you're left with a trope-heavy and mediocre "save the world" plot with some far-fetched fantasy elements.
Bear with me for a while as I try to make sense of Zetsuen no Tempest's cluster**** of a plot. It's spoiler-free, and one of the most contrived scenarios I've ever seen in a shonen title.
From what I gather, there's a group of magi attempting to bring about the end of the world through a pandemic that turns everything to metal. In order to do so, they're summoning a giant tree that causes "fruit", or giant eye-ball covered things attached to chains, to bear from the ground. These mages have exiled their leader, Hakaze, an omnipotent teenage girl with a God-like command of magic, on a desert island. She was opposed to the group's actions, but one has to beg the question… How did they manage to capture and imprison their leader if she's shown, on multiple occasions, to overpower them? Hell if I know! In any case, she's somehow managed to establish contact with the outside world, bestowing her powers in talismans that she's spread around Japan. Wait… If she was able to do this, doesn't that mean she foresaw the betrayal? Isn't there a more effective method of seeking help than throwing magical walkie-talkies across a country? Again, the show doesn't really explain these conveniences. They're plot holes, but extremely contrived ones at that.
But wait! That's not all of it… The main plot actually revolves around the mysterious death of the protagonist's sister. The viewer follows our two teenage heroes, Yoshino and Mahiro, as they unravel this conspiracy, while the hectic apocalyptic background attempts to brings it all together. Thankfully, the show isn't as hard to follow as I've made it sound. If anything, the slow build-ups and incessant, heavy-handed expositions make the plot seem completely arbitrary in nature. Moreover, the setting is centered around a post-apocalyptic event, but the way Zetsuen no Tempest mishandles and neglects its impact makes everything seem inconsequential. Half of Japan was wiped out by a magical, unknown epidemic and the parents of the main protagonist were in a city known to be affected by said epidemic? Well, we'll just show a single, 10 second scene of the destruction and be done with it. The action falls under a similar pattern, with the majority of confrontations being entirely mindless and serving no purpose. For example, an entire episode was spent showing the fight between some random henchman with a spear and the main protagonist - almost 20 minutes of senseless fighting without any sort of context. At least the audience can find humour in the fact that the main protagonists constantly used teleportation to fight, but when overpowered, the fight simply ends with the protagonists running away... On foot.
Perhaps the biggest plot hole was the "Romeo and Juliet" forbidden romance between Yoshina and Mahiro's sister, Aika. Love at first sight is a rather aggravating occurrence that plagues all of Shakespeare's romantic tragedies, and like many Shakespearean plays, the coupling of Aika and Yoshino was mostly born out of convenience. Despite being Yoshino's motivation for joining the quest to save the world, his entire relationship with Aika and their attraction was largely unexplained. It's understandably difficult to establish or depict a relationship with a dead character, but there really needs to be some substance behind the character's death and their relationship with the living cast if the entire plot is be grounded by it. If the viewer isn't given any reason to care about the show's central characters, why should we give a damn about a conflict that's propelled by them?
One of the few redeeming aspects of the show was the fact that its protagonists had unclear motivations for "playing the hero". Their relationship with each other isn't really expanded beyond "childhood friends, one delinquent and his well-reasoned buddy that tries to set him straight". However, it's interesting to speculate as to why they're trying to save the world (beyond the obvious justification of their inevitable destruction). Neither protagonist, Yoshino or Mahiro, seems to have a particular attachment to the world they're trying to save, but they can't be accurately characterized as "nihilistic". Every aspect about the characters beyond this feature, however, was largely uninspired. Mahiro's characterization is as flat as revenged-crazed siblings come, but Yoshino was particularly disappointing in that he's introduced and constantly remarked as a sly, manipulative person. Despite all of this exposition, he never appears to be anything more than a well-intentioned, level-headed character for more or less the entirety of the series. Zetsuen no Tempest is a frustrating case where the show continuously tells the viewers about its characters rather than building characterization through the plot and context. In fact, almost all of the character traits revealed throughout the show were given through observations by other characters - Hakaze is revealed to be powerful only through the praise of her followers, Yoshino is supposedly manipulative because Aika introduced him as such, and Mahiro's brashness comes from all of the characters frequently calling him out on it.
Art and Animation
The artwork is passable, but not spectacular by any means. Zetsuen no Tempest does get kudos, however, for a successful depiction of post-apocalyptic environments. The colour palettes were dark and earthy, with most of its settings lying somewhere on the grey scale. Similar to the manga, the pseudo-bishonen/bishoujo design is somewhat hit-or-miss and prevalent on each and every character. Every male character has an overly exaggerated hair style and colour, but it isn't overly bothersome. What is bothersome, however, is the repeated use of certain scenes. Practically every episode reminds viewers of the overarching "ritual" plot by showing the same scene of robed, chanting figures.
In the sound department, Zetsuen no Tempest mostly relies on dramatic, classical pieces. Befitting, but hardly memorable.The first OP stands out though, being an English rock song sung by an entirely Japanese band. If there's one thing about the show that I can wholeheartedly recommend, it'd be the music of Nothing's Carved in Stone's.
I can't really recommend this show to anyone, despite the fact that it's being praised as one of the best mystery/thrillers to recently air. Hell, I could hardly find any reason to finish this show myself. If you're looking for something thoughtful, then I highly suggest you give this show a pass. There really isn't any "heavy-dialogue" in a good sense, except the frequent info dumps that result from a really contrived (and ultimately unsuccessful) plot. All in all, Zetsuen no Tempest is a highly mediocre shonen title, with enough inconsistencies and missteps to make any informed viewer scratch their head with frustration.
So this is my first review of any anime but I wrote reviews about manga before. Anyways, don't be harsh xD
The first thing that caught my attention for this anime was how its wallpaper looked like. It was just an advertisement when I was watching some other anime, and I was like..hmm, this looks interesting. I didn't have the slightest clue about what it is, neither that it was a new anime or its genres. I just decided to watch it cause I was bored and the genres were my favorites. So I watched the first episode and it did not disappoint me. Well
to be honest I didn't like it that much when it began. It made absolutely no sense to me. There was just some random things happening that had no connections to each other and it didn't make sense at all. But at the end, they all connected to each other and you wanna know more and what's gonna happen next. Things that made no sense alone, now make sense with each other. I only watched the first three episodes that's already out, but the story seems promising and it's gonna be on my list to follow up.
Although there's a bad point to it, that it's not that unique. As I was watching the anime a lot of other anime came across my mind. But oh well, you can't always expect a perfect anime :D
I can't say there's anything special about the art except for the actions scenes. The characters are normal anime characters that you see in any other anime. I would say they really look alike the characters from durarara and Guilty Crown. Still it is good art. The actions scenes are kinda unique though. Well I never saw any kind of this action in any other anime before, so I guess that's what makes it unique. Unlike many other action anime, in this anime the action scenes are really good animated and it did not disappoint me.
I really liked the sound. The voice actors do a really good job and can express the feelings well. The background sound is good as well and it puts you in the mood of the anime, you can actually feel mystery, sadness, anger and all the other emotions through the sound.
What I liked the most about this anime is the characters. The characters really attracted me and I wanna know more about them. There's a lot of mystery hidden behind the personality of each character and you think you just see through them in the first glance, but you're wrong cause you don't. How the characters developed in the past few episodes was really good. I'm looking forward to each of their character development.
I really enjoyed the anime overall. As I said before I only watched it cause I was bored but now I'm hooked. I really want the new episodes to come out. How everything mixes together makes this anime outstanding.
If you are a fan of action, mystery and magic, you have to watch this. It's not just silly anime and it has a serious feeling to it. I really liked it so far and hopefully it'll stay this way.
Hope this helps. ^__^
This is a story that constantly quotes and references Hamlet and The Tempest, both works of Shakespeare. Some people will love that fact, while others may be a little annoyed. I thought it was done very well, and I really loved the theme and the execution of this series. I have not read the Manga it is based on, but I never expected to love this series going into it. I was pleasantly surprised and it's now one of my favorites. It is a great blend of story, dialogue, action, and it has a great visual and audio presentation.
What's it about? The synopsis doesn't really
say. It's about magic, it's about relationships, it's about the end of the world, and it's about quirky characters that interact with each other in very bizarre ways. It's difficult to describe without throwing spoilers around. Think "Shakespeare Play" and you'll get the feel of it right away!
This is one of those beautifully done series as far as artwork and animation goes. It's consistent, it's good quality and it has some wow moments. The music fits well, and it enhances the experience, and the voice acting is done very well. Being filled with so much dialogue, this is an important piece for them to nail and I think they did just that. I loved the package, I loved the execution, and I really think it shines in these elements.
The characters of Zetsuen no Tempest were dysfunctional, unexpected, and yet wonderful at the same time. The two main characters were not your stereotypical heroes, in fact their roles in this story were borderline bizarre. This story is based on the emotional involvement of these main characters. They do have their awesome moments early on, but later in the story are not the dominant "action heroes" of the tale by any means. The fate of the world revolves around the "feelings" of all parties involved, and the two main characters relationship with each other keep the fate of mankind hanging in the balance. It is a character driven story, and the characters are not swarming with stereotypes. I loved that fact about Zetsuen no Tempest, and I think it gives it that little extra something.
Now the story.... I loved the story, though it's filled with plot holes and flawed logic. The flawed logic is going to really bother some people, but the constant reference to the flawed logic of “the world” really almost pokes fun at the story in general. It’s a little ridiculous while being absolutely wonderful at the same time. The fact is that the flaws are used as storytelling devices, and it's the plot holes and flaws that help tell the story properly. It is a little obvious at times, but it has some nice little twists and surprises that keep it fresh. Best of all it’s told in such a way that it was easy to watch week to week. I looked forward to every episode and the cliffhangers were done very well.
I really loved this series. It was different enough to feel fresh while being absurd and intriguing at the same time. I loved the main characters and I loved how it tried to imitate Shakespeare in its delivery. The fast and quirky dialogue while focusing on the interpersonal relationships made this series special. I highly recommend it!
“There is more shounen ai in this anime, Horatio, than is dreamt of in your philosophy” - Definitely not Shakespeare
A light hearted review of Blast of Tempest (my first, so suggestions welcome)
Blast of Tempest (Tempest for short) is, for some inexplicable reason, a love letter to two of Shakespeare’s most enduring plays: The Tempest and Hamlet. A strange concept it is indeed, and this anime is, without a doubt, one of the most pretentious I have seen as a result. I admire the writer for being self-absorbed enough to take two classic pieces of literature, and squeeze them into the context of a
high-schooler mystery action anime. Surprisingly though, it is exactly this confidence that the show exudes that makes the mixture click beautifully.
Our main characters, Fuwa Mahiro and Takigawa Yoshino, are thrust almost immediately into a world where everyone is turning into stone, Mahiro’s found a doll allowing him to speak to Kusaribe Hakaze (a half-naked magician/tsundere stuck on an island) with Yoshino just following along looking generally photogenic. Standard fare then, for a shounen series. The real standout feature for the series presents itself rather abruptly with the fixation on referencing Shakespeare, particularly when Fuwa Aika (Mahiro’s recently murdered sister) enters the stage. The story and characters aren’t just inspired by Shakespeare, they’re going to make sure you know the sole reason they have for their existence is to be going around quoting Shakespeare.
So it is unsurprising, given the plays this anime is inspired by, that this is a tale of revenge primarily for both the main characters. For Mahiro, it is a chance to use his newfound magic capabilities thanks to Hakaze in order to track down his sister’s killer (for whom he has a very obvious, entirely unrequited, love). Yoshino meanwhile is determined to gain peace of mind for the death of Aika, who until her death was secretly dating Yoshino under her brother’s nose. Yoshino tries to make it seem that he tags along however so as not to see the killer punished by Mahiro, to uphold his position as our inevitable token idealistic anime character (in the very best of ways though).
Anyone familiar with the stories of The Tempest or Hamlet will quickly notice the similarities between Blast of Tempest’s two main characters and the protagonists of The Tempest and Hamlet. Mahiro in his hell-bent devotion to revenge, calls Hamlet to mind, whereas in his more optimistic but rational moments, Yoshino is a transparent reference to The Tempest’s Prospero. While not necessary, as the anime does a reasonable job of explaining to the audience the overall themes behind The Tempest and Hamlet, anyone with even a passing knowledge of the stories and in particular the characters of both these Shakespeare plays will no doubt leaving the anime more satisfied. The ties to Shakespeare the story and characters the anime holds become more and more elegant as it progresses, and are certainly one of the most enjoyable features of the anime. That is, if you can handle the sacrilege that is an anime so arrogantly ripping of the works of the one true playwright (note: sarcasm)
Secondary characters in the show are largely passable, especially after the change in personality much of the characters have in the second half of the anime, which adopts a far more shounen tone than its first half. What you make of this is very much dependent on your overall opinion of typical shounen anime. If anyone had to animate this show though, I am glad it was studio Bones; the light-dark tones of the second half of Tempest are reminiscent of the comedy tones Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood had going for it when it wasn’t being a horribly dark I see you’ve just turned that poor girl into a monster you heartless bastards sort of show.
Blast of Tempest’s animation is what I would expect coming from Bones, not up there but definitely pleasant to the eye. I think Bones knew however that they wouldn’t need exquisitely animated backgrounds, because it surely isn’t just me who can’t get over those character designs? The power of photogenicity is definitely strong in these ones. And respect to Bones for making a show where some of the characters do occasionally find themselves wearing different clothing. If you’re not a fan of shounen ai, stay very much clear – this show is like the gateway drug to watching Free! - Iwatobi Swim Club.
The music as well ranks very highly for this show – particular props to Fuwa Aika’s seiyuu, Hanazawa Kana (also known for Kuroneko in OreImo and Mayuri in Steins;Gate), who apart from playing the ultimate ice queen as Aika, can lay claim to one of the more pleasant ending songs I have listened to. Spirit Inspiration, the first op, is great fun as well, if utterly, entirely devoid of actual meaning. Wholly deserving of my best use of engrish 2013 award.
Bones no doubt took a bit of a gamble with this show – the story is so far up its own behind it probably put many people off without giving it time to settle down and, worse still, it isn’t set in a high school. I am so glad however that they did. This 25 episode anime has an incredibly satisfying sense of progression, taking time to slow itself down before each crescendo, with the first half in particular being one of my favourite arcs in anime. If logic and rational progression in a shounen story aren’t your thing, you will probably leave Blast of Tempest feeling underwhelmed, as my favourite episodes of the series, episodes 9-12, are spent almost entirely stationary by the main characters, engaging in a good old fashioned debate. However, if you appreciate more logical progression in a storyline with a good sense of pacing, and less fanservice-based, more intelligently designed characters, you should definitely give Blast of Tempest a look. If the entire concept sounds mad but cool to you, that’s exactly what it is, and it’s brilliant for it.
Recommendation: Psycho Pass for a similarly pretentious and yet oddly satisfying storyline, filled with photogenic characters galore (and a penchant for quoting various well-known authors). Funnily enough, the band responsible for Tempest’s first op also has a (rather good) op in Psycho Pass. Note that Psycho Pass is a work of Gen Urobuchi, so by definition almost is darker than FMA and Blast of Tempest combined, with room to spare for a Madoka Magica sequel.
There's this common expression: "all bark and no bite." Blast of Tempest is a dog that barks Shakespeare quotes aimlessly, holding little weight and consequence out of the context of its wholesome product. It's like how there's so much Zelda paraphernalia that gradually obfuscates from the point of what the iconic series was in the first place - a large game franchise with a grand mythos of diverse interconnecting core stories and subplots. Blast of Tempest puts up a facade of intelligence and substance by spouting Shakespeare when there's hardly any actual story content to speak of it. Well then, I'll move on to the
core of the review that I have something to talk about, unlike this very series itself.
Story: Okay, let's start this on a positive note before I start slamming this series for its lack-of-"Story"; the initial episodes have promise at least. We have the Romeo expy Yoshino standing at his girlfriend's grave when a mysterious woman by the name of Evangeline appears asking about the whereabouts of his old friend Mahiro, the Hamlet expy. Mahiro encounters Evangeline and things get hectic. It turns out Mahiro has connections to this missing woman named Hakaze who is a mage trapped on some far off island and she wants to stop her brother Samon from reviving a magical tree that threatens the planet. Mahiro fends off Evangeline with the various magical talismans Hakaze left across the area. Meanwhile giant seeds of the Tree of Exodus Samon is trying to revive are sprouting over the city and petrifying anyone who isn't protected by a talisman. Evangeline suspects it's Hakaze's doing because Mahiro is seen actively using Hakaze's magic himself. Mahiro communicates with Hakaze via this magic idol, and Mahiro is assisting Hakaze on the condition that she finds his sister's murderer, and unbeknownst to Mahiro, his dead sister was Yoshino's girlfriend in secret. Some of Samon's assistants are thrown into the conflict to ensure things go smoothly with Exodus' resurrection, and Yoshino teams up with Mahiro to get him out of the bind and to also find out who killed his lover Aika. The first 3 episodes have lots of action and intrigue, with various sides clashing, a catastrophic plan unfolding and a decent dose of angst...but then it doesn't know where to go from there, almost literally I might add. Mahiro and Yoshino travel around every 2 episodes or so, but since nothing's going on in the present, they just settle in one spot shortly after and show flashbacks of Yoshino, Mahiro and Aika and then one boring fight scene in an aquarium and Yoshino being captured for a short period thrown to mix it up a bit. Once episode 8 comes, things get even thinner; we have not one, not two, but FOUR episodes of a long winded sophistry battle between Yoshino, Mahiro and Samon trying to prove Hakaze still being alive (which was earlier suspected to be all a weird contradiction) involving duplicates, time rifts and other stuff, and the arguments go back and forth with neither party having much evidence or going to much length to argue their stance while the government tries to attack the Tree of Exodus. When the half point hits, the world is stricken by calamity, but there's no driving conflict or urgency in the second cour, so the characters--which, mind you, all villains reconcile with the allies at this point--just meander around and occasionally blow up a tree or two every now and then, because again, nothing is going on. After blowing up enough trees (yeah, take that environment!), the plot starts to head towards some semblance of a conclusion, but not before we find out who Aika's killer is, which happens to be one of the most ludicrous and groan-worthy twists I've ever seen, and it's all uncovered thanks to the magic of a crappy time travel element to put the crap icing on the garbage cake. The remaining events unfold without many bumps in the road, wrapping up in a totally run of the mill happy ending just to nip it in the bud. That's pretty much it. The story is about as thin as a nickel and is littered with many problems, but it has the occasional saving grace like the first 3 episodes, the conflict with society and the media on blowing up the trees fearing worse than the already poor conditions, and a delightfully liberating and refreshing scene where the one sane and logical side character beats the crap out of our far gone angst-ridden protagonists. That's all more than enough to save it from being one of the worst things ever, but it is still a big waste of time. I love Shirodaira's most prolific work, Spiral, so I had some expectations going in, and suffice to say I was massively disappointed, such a shame.
Characters: Oh goody, the characters. I'll be fair and say that for the most part they started off tolerable in the first cour before the even more dreadful second, but there's still nothing exemplary from most of them, and the second cour does some hefty damage to them. Yoshino is the lovelorn Romeo character who goes from being more proactive and level headed to whiney and self-loathing, Mahiro is the cynical and sharp-tongued Hamlet who goes from a driven avenger to an egotistical bully and Aika is the sadistic princess who played around with both of them. Hakaze turns from a confident and spunky lass to a nagging waifu trying to pine for Yoshino. Evangeline is something of an aggressive Misato-esque warrior woman who stays fairly consistent but is less prominent in the latter half while her assistant Takumi is pretty much just along for the ride. Hakaze's big bro Samon gets some of the worst of it, turning from a stern and headstrong antagonist to...comic relief with a straight face. His right hand brawn, Natsumura, is a ruthless stoic, but he doesn't have much of a hand in the second half, but Tetsuma the brains and voice for Samon has it worse, becoming nothing more than a cab driver for everyone else. Now, the one who is straight up the worst character of the lot the entire time...Junichiro. The lawful neutral who fulfills only that much, just wandering around being neutral; if he ever gets involved, he beats up members of both parties, of which, the fights are omitted to be left to the imagination, making it more dreadful than it already is. He is an absolutely pointless character, and the only time he ever did something with some effect to it is when he tried to share certain plot details which obfuscate details and make things more mysterious. Thankfully though, I'll close things off with the one character who DOES stand out as a good character - better than the series does justice to, which is Hanemura. He starts out as a bit of a spineless but sincere and rational guy who learns to fight under Mahiro's tutelage and gradually becoming more outspoken and vigorous after going through all the physical duress of Mahiro's training and emotional turmoil of all the other characters angsting and complaining around him, leading to the powerful scene of him kicking Mahiro and Yoshino's asses when things get out of hand. He's a stand up guy and he sets things straight when the plot is wrought with too much self-indulgence, anguish and melodrama, making him a refreshing change, ironically he is introduced in the second cour when all else goes to crap, so that in itself is a plus. At the end of the day, Hanemura breaks the series out of its conceited shell, but when leveled with the general character decay and initial merely decent characterization plus Junichirou, I can't give the roster a pass.
Art/Animation: Blast of Tempest being animated by Bones is a good sign. The very same company known for works such as both Fullmetal Alchemist adaptations, Wolf's Rain, RahXephon and many more nice looking series, and Blast of Tempest upholds some degree of that quality in its appearance. The characters are almost never off model, everything is smoothly rendered, clean and sharp looking and can pull off some more dynamic action scenes well, but those scenes are rather few and far between, and there's still much better out there, so it isn't THAT remarkable. The artwork looks really nice too thankfully, capturing the look of the manga well, with the designs being very sharp to begin with so the series looks cool at the very least.
Sound: The score is a rather enticing collection of melancholic orchestral pieces with bits of whimsy, mystery, grandiose and tragedy to them. There also happens to be select Beethoven pieces bundled in, so you know there's quality classical pieces to be had in this series, so that music happens to be the strongest department for this anime. The voice work on the other hand, is about average; characters come off as one note a lot of the time and lack a bit of enthusiasm at times, but the voices fit the characters well and performances are still consistent and serviceable.
Enjoyment: For me, enjoyment tends to run concurrent with story, and even if an anime may come off as "boring" in terms of tone and atmosphere to some, if there is some weighty metatheming or elaborate writing and intrigue permeating over the course of things, I won't get bored personally. However, as my story section dictates, there was hardly anything worthwhile for me to chew on. If Blast of Tempest were a steak, it would be a bland, dry and tough to chew on one. I was bored watching it most of the time because things always meandered and there wasn't much intellectual meat to it, and a lot of it was far below average. Blast of Tempest was just a really stale journey.
In closing, Blast of Tempest is one of those series that falls into-nay, EPITOMIZES the cliche of a lot of anime out there: interesting concept, poor execution (in this case, hardly any). It's one of the most sloggish and inflated series I've ever seen that clings to its premise like a pure catholic teen clings to his/her chastity. The series had a cool idea that was rather intriguing, but it didn't know how to expand on it, so they just run around haphazardly with it and start randomly expounding Shakespeare references to try and uphold the air of assured direction when they haven't a clue what they are doing. "Okay, so I've hooked them with the premise and I gotta make a series with this, but I have no idea what to do next...GOT IT! I'll have the characters quote Shakespeare because HE'S intelligent, so that will make them think THIS SERIES is still intelligent! Perfect!" Blast of Tempest is a stretched out, pretentious (I try to use this word sparingly) and unexciting odyssey (if you can even call it that) and it is not worth your time. Don't be fooled by the Shakespeare references, this series is hardly smart at all, don't waste your time on it. Do yourself a favour and just read Spiral by the same author, it's a mystery that's worth it, Shirodaira just dropped the ball here.
This is one of the best psychological anime that I have ever seen till now (Might change in the future if I stumble upon another anime which is even greater than this). Let’s find out why is it the best psychological anime, Shall we?
This was just wonderfully written and done. It was simply epic. I don’t marathon a anime in a single day but Zetsuen no Tempest made me marathon it in just a day. This was an anime which I shall call the mother of all plot twists. You will think exactly the opposite of what will happen *no let me correct that*
No you are actually made to think the opposite of exactly what will happen. I still wonder how this isn't in the top 100. This should be rated even higher than it’ current ran of 277th. I did not expect disappointment when I picked this show and it didn't give me disappointment either. All the questions we have near the end of the anime are answered (Well that was for me though). The story was at a really good pace and even leaving a few hours for some work will make you want to watch the next episode and find out what is going on. It’s that kind of feeling I had.
Now this was another brilliant part of the anime. The 2 OP as well as the 2 ED will not disappoint you (ED 1 made me sleepy actually). The OP 1 was completely sung in English by Nothing’s Craved in stone, yes you heard me right. It’s a full English OP and not a semi one and it was damn good to listen to. They have also sung OP 2 of Psycho Pass too. The OST were pretty well done and a few were done by the people in Key and the OST just fit in with the scenes.
They weren't uninteresting nor interesting, they were just good and they did their roles well. The 2 male MC were just brilliant (in terms of having brains.) They both were intelligent but they both had their own separate ways in dealing with the same problem. We were also shown of a few side characters past or we were more exposed to them = learning who and how they are. So it didn't suck there. We were introduced to a lot of characters but the main side characters behaviours and how they truly are were shown which is supposed to be important in all anime. We also had a few plot twists in the characters itself too.
Again this was good. There were some parts where it did go downhill for a few secs but they were ok for me as the story is more important to me. The CG were pretty good too. The CG didn't even feel like it was Different. The OP2 introduced to us the new characters and it was enjoyable looking at it. Well there was not much here for me
I enjoyed it pretty well. There were few episodes of enjoyment + it did keep me entertained the entire anime. So if you think this is all a serious anime then you are wrong. There of course need to be fun time too.
Overall: A Really good psychological + supernatural anime I would recommend to watch
Overall score: 8.8
Personal note: These are entirely my opinions and you don’t have to agree or disagree with me.
The first episode of this series was most impressive. To be fair, it blew me away. First the artwork - it set the tone for the anime. It wasn't cutesy or cartoonish at all (nothing wrong with that) but showed a kind of muted realism, both in the characters' drawing and the scenery. It elevated the anime in some ways. Also the almost understated tension in the first episode showed something I'd not seen before. So I was very much interested to watch on.
The premise of the whole story was also fascinating. As well as having magic, a
murder mystery, and some bizarre butterflies and floating eyeball fruit, this anime, for me, was set apart from the pack.
The initial set up to the story was intriguing, and the characters had a kind of gritty realism about them. Combined with a catchy opening sequence, the series showed a hell of a lot of promise. Promise that ultimately was unfulfilled. The end left me with unrequited yearning. Allow me to explain.
If I were to sum up the series in one word it would be "slow". The pace of the anime was just too darned slow. From memory I could only remember a few occasions where I REALLY wanted to watch on. And although there were a few minor surprises and twists (none which you wouldn't be able to guess yourself if you're bright enough) the anime just did not seem to have the pace that it promised from the first episode. Much of the series was taken up by somewhat pointless dialogue which kind of droned on. I kept asking myself when something would happen, then the episode would end and I was left with a feeling of "what the...?"
That's not to say there aren't some good elements to the anime. I thought the music used was very atmospheric, appropriate and really added tension to the dramatic aspects. The art was also superb, it was really something, and for the most part I enjoyed watching it for that aspect.
But having finished I couldn't shake the niggling feeling there was something essential lacking. It's hard to put one's finger on it. The artwork was great, the music fantastic, the characters original and unique... But Zetsuen no Tempest was ultimately unable to deliver.
Firstly the characters. The first half of the series was difficult to watch because there were no protagonists who the viewer could identify with or even like, except for a mage who is stuck on a deserted island in the middle of nowhere and can only communicate through a wooden doll. Mahiro is not a likeable hero, and does not seem to pretend to be one either. So we follow his angry, selfish motives for vengeance as he tries to find the killer of his sister. And on the flip side of the coin we have Yoshino, who is nebulous at best. He barely reacts to anything, and it's hard to drum up any feeling for this deadpan character. Even at the end I wasn't sure if I liked him or not. I suppose I would say I didn't really care.
The second half of the series was also somewhat disappointing. All the potential conflicts and plot lines are too conveniently tied up, and they don't really go anywhere. It was disappointing.
The constant references to Shakespeare were interesting... sort of. The characters have this thing where they start spurting random quotes form the Tempest and Hamlet. Others have said this is a strength of the anime, but personally I'm not so sure. It appears forced initially and out of place. Even I can start spouting Shakespeare if I wanted: "When we are born we cry that we are come to this great stage of fools"... but I'm not sure why I would do it ... At the end they tie in the two Shakespearean references somewhat nicely, so I guess it wasn't all bad.
I'd give it a go if you like slow paced character driven anime. Being a fan of fantasy genres in general, I wouldn't have high hopes for that aspect of the story as the mages' "powers" are kind of limited and in the end don't really mean much or add anything to the plot.
Before getting into the review, let me say that, Zetsuen no Tempest is heavily linked with the works of William Shakespeare. The Tempest and Hamlet are the two pieces used and having some prior knowledge on these two texts does help fully appreciate Zetsuen no Tempest. If you have an indepth understanding of both of the plays you'll be able to notice the similarities and predict some scenarios beforehand. However, the anime does a good job of not making it a prerequisite and thus the general audience will be able to follow. Simply put, the major difference between the two is that; Hamlet is a
tragedy while The Tempest ends happily. There are many references of the two pieces, while the plot and characters are heavily influenced from both The Tempest and Hamlet.
The first episode sets the up the plot and wastes no time in getting into the action. From the episode, it's evident that there are two main complications. The first is of the death of Aika Fuwa (Mahrio's sister), and Mahiro is trying to hunt the killer himself. The second key plot is about the Kurasibe Clan. Hazkaze (female lead) is stranded on an island, because Samon (Kurasibe Clan leader) wants to awaken the Tree of Exodous. Simply put, there is the possibility of an apocalyptic-type destruction to occur if the tree is awoken from its slumber. The two stories approach closer and closer, as the series progresses only to tangle into one bigger picture.
Zetusen no Tempest does a good job of making it appear more complicated than it really is. The basic plot is covered with mystery and psychological elements which are used to disrupt the predictability. New aspects are continuously added to create unexpected moments and attempt to confuse the audience.
Zetsuen no Tempest has a lead dual protagonist, of equal position, which is pretty rare and difficult to pull off. However it manages to do it exceptionally well and thus characters Mahiro and Yoshino are appealing. Mahiro started off as someone who was blinded for revenge, but only to become more mature and calm than at first. Yoshino appears as an innocent bystander, but as the story progresses, the perception of his character changes. They give mutual assurance to each other as arise, which helps advance the story. Their relationship starts as friends, with some background to it, but changes overtime. Bonds are tested by issues and complications arise which can only deepen or break friendships.
Hakaze Kusaribe is a sorceress and the strongest one in history. Hakaze isn't as central as the duo but still went through some growth and change. Her selflessness was the most evident part of her personality, and thus it goes through the biggest development. She is the strongest magic user and thus becomes an invaluable person in most of the situations in combat. Her relationship with the other characters can only grow after being in isolation for so long, and she begins emotions she hasn't felt before.
Secondary characters weren't as influential but they were important to the initial advancement of the story. They each had a role to create a complication, helping the main characters mature. They played apart in conversations and various narrations. But towards the second half, they began to lose their purpose as the main plot was becoming uncovered. Their roles started declining and becoming almost generic, like a backdrop to the scenes.
The latter half of the series lacked what made the first half so special. In the first half , the predictability was never there because the characters were indefinite. They still weren't fully matured and thus could do the unexpected by, having a change of heart. The plot was also purposely undeveloped but flexible allowing it to potentially stray off into any direction. In the second half, the general plot was revealed and thus it loses its charm of secrecy. However, it does a solid job of maintaining the major mystery of Aika's death until the very end. Zetsuen no Tempest had the choice of either ending as The Tempest or Hamlet. Though I won't say how it ends, the one it does choose is rather forcible.
The use of magic brings a supernatural theme, but takes away some of its realism. And thankfully it did not go over the top with the use of magic. Its primary uses were for combat, destruction and for some odd bits and pieces. It wasn't a major part of the anime, but instead adds another dimension of possibilities to the already flexible plot.
The depressed atmosphere goes well with the world ending theme. There was little action in general but for the small pieces of combat were animated nicely. The fighting scene act as a change of pace from the rest of the anime. There was a good amount of it, never too much or too little. The art-style looked good and consistent throughout. While the character models depicted the personalities of the characters. The soundtrack worked well and only enhanced the mood.
In the end the anime handled itself well and its ending that ties up the ends. The series as a whole, balances all the components, and has an excellent cast of characters. Although the first half is noticeably better than the second and attempts to force a specific ending, but no doubt it was worth the watch.
My favorite anime this season, really interesting story that pays homage to Shakespeare's Hamlet and The Tempest while integrating its own original storyline and unique characters.
Zetsunen no Tempest, a story of revenge and tragedy. Referencing Shakespeare's Hamlet, the story portrayed can lead to tragic end of revenge where sadness is reflected with more sadness. However, there is also The Tempest, the alternative end to a story of revenge. An ending where all is forgiven and sadness is repaid with forgiveness and happiness.
Amazing plot, the story of revenge leads the audience to decide whether the ending should be one of tragedy or happy ending. Loved how
Zetsuen no Tempest tells a story of magic and mythology, at the same time giving the possibility that what seems like magic and gods could merely be science at a level above one's comprehension. The story involves a lot of psychology theme which is a favorite of mine. Questioning just how one should response to loss of loved one, by either responding with desire for revenge or to continue living a normal life. Honestly this story deserves a higher rating than 8, a majority of top animes with high ratings are romance comedy. This story is interesting! It helps question what it means to be human, whether being logical all the time is appropriate or to express those emotions we humans were given to show. Using the words from Hamlet and The Tempest, truly made the story more elegant and beautiful. Showing that humans not only desire a meaningful life, but a meaningful death. Not to mention Zetsuen no Tempest help question whether lifes' coincidences are just coincidences or do they tie to pre destined state of events in life.
Enjoyed the art definitely, characters were well design. Loved how Aika's death was shown to be mysterious, beautiful and meaningful when given reason for her death but also cold and tragic without understanding what was the point of her death. Mahiro's character art was well drawn as well, his appearance gave off a rebellious leader aura that was recklessly yet rational. Yoshino's character art was also well suited for his character and personality, looking somewhat regular like character but hiding a calculative intelligent persona that at times lack delicacy due to experience.
The classical use of music helped produced the atmosphere really well. Music being classical really help Zetsuen no Tempest relate to Shakespeare's Hamlet and the Tempest even most so. Not much to say otherwise.
Loved all the characters, especially Aika for being the mastermind behind our 2 protagonists' journey for revenge and truth. Aika (also voiced by my favorite seiyuu) was my favourite, her personality being a little bit of everything. Strong and cold by being able to make the decision of her death all on her own, playing an act in front of Mahiro with Yoshino to keep their relationship a secret. Yet having a soft, warm and playful side to her that is somewhat childish at times. During times with her and just Yoshino or arguing with Mahiro because neither were afraid of her but rather felt the need to protect her frail looking appearance. Yoshino was my favourite character for first half of the story, being able to calmly make decisions and act out of rationality, adapting when necessary. Being perfect yet imperfect was what made him interesting. Since Aika mentioned that Yoshino is able to be calm and act rational at all times is because he goes with the flow adapting when necessary, able to be everything appropriate but unable to be individual. Mahiro wasn't much of a favorite character but likable nevertheless. A typical rebellious cold and cool character, reckless yet has good rational than most rebellious characters would. Hakaze being the opposite half of Aika was good to have. A sheltered princess unknowing to common sense, having an outward tough exterior but is actual frail on the inside being the maiden she is. Complete opposite of Aika who was frail in appearance but strong willed in personality, complementing each other's character.
Probably one of my new top favorites indefinitely, since its rare to have good tragedy stories. Not to mention a tragedy story with a good turn around. Plus despite the continuous bombardment of tragic plot events, it had some slight comedic relief time to time to help keep the story from being depressing. One of my favorite reasons that I enjoyed this story was that it was not 2 protagonist with special traits or abilities, but rather 2 ordinary high school students at a unique place at a unique time, making it very adaptive to the idea that no matter how normal the life you live is. You are your own protagonist in your own story. An enjoyable story of what may seem like predetermined act with actors following a script, but it is the actor's will to carry out those lines.
The first half of the anime was theatrical, morose and stylish (yellow butterflies, humans turned into metal statues, faintly Lovecraftian environmental apocalypse, Kabbalism and Shakespeare go surprisingly well together). It had a certain charm, even if the characters talked their mouths off and the action moved a bit slowly.
Then the second half completely changed the tone. Everything started revolving around Hakaze's juvenile, banal crush on Yoshino. The fate of the world and the revenge plot took second stage to the riveting sight of Hakaze going kyaa and smashing her breasts against Yoshino's arm every two minutes. Quality storytelling, that. -_-
So if you don't mind an
interesting premise turning halfway through into a run of the mill romantic comedy about the relationship angst of a hormonal teenager, you can watch this. Otherwise give Zetsuen a wide berth.
Zetsuen No Tempest is one of those series that you'll come across accidentally, instead of getting it recommended from an anime-loving friend, and after finishing it, you'll be scratching your head, wondering why it isn't higher up in the rankings. But what makes it so good? Let's find out, shall we?
At first, the story may seem like a typical shonen; the two main characters are trying to save the world, with the help of a stranger, from a seemingly evil group (and a tree!). However, as you progress through the series, you'll start realizing there's a lot more than to what meets the eye. The
story becomes a roller-coaster ride midway and until the end, you'll be on the edge of the seat, captivated by the flow of the story.
This is probably the weakest point of the series. Although it's not horrible, the art is not exceptional either, and the animation does no justice to the series, with regular animation errors that you can't help but face-palm at. Try not to be too hung up on the errors, or it might be make the experience a bit more unpleasant.
The music is pretty decent, in my opinion. The first opening, Spirit Inspiration, is a fun ride (although its lyrics make no sense), and he two endings are a pleasant experience. The background music is also well done, with each piece setting the mood properly, if not perfectly.
Undoubtedly the best part of the series. Each character is different from the other. Most of them, including the supporting protagonists, have character developments which range from good to amazing. The dialogues are the highest points of the show, with frequent references to Shakespearean plays like Hamlet and The Tempest which are used to great effect.
To be honest, I was pretty skeptical of the show at first. Little did I know though, it would be one hell of a hectic ride that would keep my eyes glued to the screen at all times and prevent me from ever wanting to take a break.
In conclusion, Zetsuen No Tempest is like a sports car you haven't used in a long time: it takes some time to get to its best, but when it does, you won't look back. It's a gem of a series which deserves a lot of recognition, and I can safely say it is one of the finest anime I've seen in my life.
Would you obliterate this world for the sake of someone you love? Would you go against the logic of the world to achieve your goals?
Zetsuen No Tempest is a masterly written piece of work that challenges the watcher to reflect on their ideas of death, love, and logic. I started this anime with low expectations. I am a rather optimistic person, and the premise of a dystopic world did not attract much enthusiasm from me. Zestuen No Tempest, however, is not just a story of some parallel dystopian world, but rather a personal story involving love and tragedy.
ZNT prides itself in their story
telling. Yes, there are numerous action scenes to gratify our blood-thirsty anime watching peers but these are not the most impressive features of the anime. The splendidity is established in the plot and dialog. ZNT did a great job with dialog. The initial proposition of the anime were not striking. You have a world where there is a special clan, called the Kusaribe, that can manipulate technology to use their power, which they call magic. It seems like this “magic” comes from a tree, and the magic can only be used to enforce the world's logic. Nothing mind blowing.
The story is less about magic but rather the peculiar circumstances of the two main characters, Fuwa Mahiro and Takigawa Yoshino. These two characters are both thrown into this surreal world of magic after the murder of their beloved, Fuwa Aika. Mahiro is bent on avenging his little sister, while Yoshino is struggling to find inner peace with this news. These two personalities are the driving force of the plot.
I think Yoshino and Mahiro had a terrific dynamic that kept me in the edge of my seat, at least, during the first half of the anime. Yoshino and Mahiro are supposedly friends, but their relationship are at first pictured ambiguously. Their devious personalities made me suspicious of their real motives, but it is those parts that made the anime so intense and eye grabbing.
Though the anime is rather dark, there are comedic elements that help alleviate some of the darkness that surrounds the story. I am not a fan of "fan service" but there were some of it in the anime. It was all nicely placed and didn't interfered with the viewing experience. Some of it was actually nicely appreciated.
The first half of this anime was phenomenal. The intensity of those first few episodes were unprecedented in my experience, and the most surprising part was how they executed it. I will not spill spoilers, but those parts were dialog-driven, and it is spectacular how those scenes captured you into the story and made your mind thrilled at every new twist.
The second half of the anime was not as intense as the first half, but by no mean was it sub par. The second half just added more to the story. The introduction of a certain anticipated female character was the main event, but there were other factors that made the second half excellent.
Overall, I give the story 8/10.
The scores says it all. Not much to explain.
I enjoyed the second half's opening and closing more than the first half's Op and Ed. Both of them were good.
The BGM was excellent and fit every scene. It was so unique and theatrical in it's volume and instrument used. The epicness, the intensity, and the dystopia shown were all equally fitted with superb background music.
Will definitely check out the OST when I get the chance.
I mentioned earlier that the plot drives the anime, and while this is true, it is the characters that pushes the plot forward. ZNT did not flesh out every character that were introduced ( there were some characters that we never even got to see at all) but they managed to really fulfill the characters that were the most central to their story. These central characters would be Mahiro, Yoshino, Hazake, and Aika.
Mahiro- He was my favorite character of the series. His intellect could not be denied, his will power was impeccable, and his vengeance nothing to play with. I felt bad for him throughout the anime since it seemed like he was the one in most pain, and I couldn't see a good ending for him emotionally. One that is driven for revenge usually doesn't have the best ending. There was character development and Mahiro did change a bit, though he would deny it. I like seeing his interactions with others, though Mahiro seems like he can do it all, he does have trouble with communication, which gave some good comedic relief on my part. Liked his character design.
Yoshino- I have mixed feelings about this character. I mostly like him but I still feel like we didn't really get to delve into who Yoshino really is. I get it. He prides himself in not showing his emotion to anyone, but you would think that we would at least get a glimpse, as us watchers, to his inner attitude towards other characters. Besides that, I really enjoyed this character. He is not your typical MC, he is smart, conscious, and and not afraid to get his hand dirty. He is a complex character, and you always want your MC to be more than one dimensional. Unique character design, but looks like Light Yagami in some angles.
Hazake: I did not like her at first, but she grew on me over time. She's smart, but has an annoying attitude. She is extremely arrogant. This makes sense however, since she was raised as a princess, and is the strongest person of the Kusaribe tribe. She grew on me later, because we got to see different sides of her, and it made her more human to me. I grew very fond of her. Typical but fitting character design. She was a bit too short for my opinion. Maybe she has a Napoleon complex......
Aika: The mysterious girl that has captured the heart of the two main MCs and thrown logic out of joint. The girl in love with Shakespeare tragedies, and can be seen religiously quoting verses from Hamlet and Tempest. I enjoyed Aika. I think the anime foreshadowed her to be this special and unique character, and I thought they were doing too much with all her flashbacks, but in the end, Aika in full glory was all that I thought she would be. Her witty remarks, her dark humor, her sexual teasing, I loved it all. She certainly deserves all the attention given to her in Zetsuen No Tempest. Pretty Character design, seems to be in contrast to Hazake's design.
Zetsuen No Tempest was a heck of a ride. The first half shined as bright as any anime I have ever seen, and the second half was spectacular in their transition. The theme of the anime about wanting to change the world for someone you love is reiterated and explained throughout the anime. There are numerous quotes from Hamlet and Tempest, and I would be surprised if one is not at least tempted to get into Shakespeare after completing this anime. The enjoyment was out of the roof for me, I initially gave this anime an 9/10...but there was two episode in the second half that boosted the anime to a perfect score.
But the anime was not perfect, there were some underwhelming parts, but overall, I cannot disregard the tremendous excitement that I felt while watching this anime.
I recommend this to anyone that enjoys a great Ost, drama, love, and battle of wits.
Here we have, a superb series that didnt get the spotlight it deseved. The Fall 2012 anime season brought a lot of fan favorite series that would have viewers buzzing so other anime would be dropped. Zetsuen no Tempest was unfortunate, for some, to be part of the latter.
Studio Bones animates another Shonen Gangan manga, but unlike some of their previous adaptions it's not pragmatic and has no gecko ending. Meaning it follows the story all the way through. Some scenes are altered and arranged differently from the original manga but they're arguably improvements. The plot of the anime, even if not original is executed
very well. From episode 5 and onwards there's at least one twist or revelation in every episode and Zetsuen no Tempest does this without getting convoluted. It starts out as a simple story about revnge but expands the plot to a worldly scale.
As stated earlier the anime is by Studio Bones so it's given high production values in it's art and animation. The character designs are very attractive; the hairstyles and outfits are very detailed and the colors are deep and vibrant, especially in the character's eyes. The CGI also adds to a beautiful experience, most notably in the action scenes and the animation of butterflies.
The main characters meant to be based off those in Shakespeare's works. Mahiro as Prince Hamlet(Hamlet), Yoshino as Romeo Montague(Romeo & Juliet), Hakaze as Prospero(The Tempest), and Aika as Sycorax(The Tempest) and Ophelia(Hamlet). However, due to the plot of the story, the characters' actions differ and they're spared some of the angst found in a Shakespeare play. In fact Yoshino, Aika, Mahiro(and Hakaze later on) are aware of Shakespeare's works and make a point to not "let this story end in tragedy). Mahiro is a straightforward, almost stereotypically shonen protagonist, main character. He has an unfettered mind consumed by revenge, yet even he has some wits about him. Yoshino, is a "Beware the nice guy" type who isnt afraid to turn into a manipulative bastard. Mahiro doesnt care about the world and even he finds Yoshino ruthless. Hakaze, despite her upbringing is spunky and probably gets the most character development in the series. Then there's Aika, the posthumous chracter, who has a huge impact on the plot, and is brig something to look forward to in the flashbacks as she steals scenes. The supporting cast is pretty small so they're given a lot of screen time to be memorable. All in all , this show has good characterization.
The music is ambitious. It alludes to Shakesperean plays by using deep, orchestral sounds in the episodes. The first opener is a solid rock song and the second one is more melodic and quite possibly fits the show better based off it's lyrics. As for the ending themes, "Happy Endings" and "Bokutachi no Uta" may feel out of place but are enjoyable nonetheless. If the sound doesnt interest you the voice acting will. Particulary, Toshiyuki Toyanaga whose playing against his type as Mahiro. Toyanaga delves so deep into the role he uses an unrecognizable voice. Still, the rest of the actors are strong. Kouki Uchiyama gives a heartstring pulling perfomance as Yoshino in episode 18. Meanwhile, Miyuki Sawashiro's Hakaze is very spirited and Kana Hanazawa gives Aika an enchanting voice. Rikiya Koyama delivers Samon's inner thoughts effectively.
If there is an issue with Zetsuen no Tempest it's episodes 10-12. What was meant to be a showdown comes out as a debate of sorts, and after some impressive fight scenes, the clever dialogue of the show might not appeal to everyone.
Earlier in the review I wrote that some people may have dropped this anime but for the people who stuck with it, they can tell you that the show kept them on the edge of their seats. I would obviously agree. With all the drama, dailogue, and plot of this show waiting for a new episode every week was almost painful. And now that it's over I'm almost going to feel abandoned.
For all the reasons I put in this review, I'm willing to consider this show a masterpiece. At the risk of sounding like a weaboo I think this is the "BEST ANIME EVER" but I know it wont take the #1 spot on MAL because it's got traits that will turn some viewers. Even so, I highly recommend it.
This is probably one of the best anime's i have seen. It has many elements from different genres making it very enjoyable for many people. It also has great cliff hangers in almost every episode making it hard for you to stop till the end. It has a quick story line that is fast paced but is still a longer story that is pretty hard to predict even if you think hard about it, it will just change completely.So overall its an amazing anime. It has many genres that are enjoyable, Great story, Beautiful artwork, Interesting characters, Ever changing plot and much more.