It's rare that a series leaves me at a complete loss for words, and I really don't mean that in a good way. I've managed to gathered the words now though, and here they are:
STORY - ...What story? Seriously, at what point is anything in this series explained? (Hint: never!) There are problems presented, sure -- Seimei, Ritsuka's older brother, was killed and he wants to find out who did it and why. Not really that intriguing or original, but it works, right? Additionally, Ritsuka has amnesia and is a "completely different person" than he was two years prior, but he doesn't know what happened.
Also not that original, but still acceptable. Unfortunately, the series doesn't seem to focus very well on either problems and instead teases you by presenting a lot of leads that seem like they're going somewhere, but never do. Soubi, who should serve as Ritsuka's connection to Seimei refuses to say anything on the matter. In fact, as far as Rituska's troubles go, Soubi's pretty worthless for plot progression even if he does defend him from mysterious attackers (who are never explained). And his creepy shotacon ways seem like far, far too shameless an attempt to wind up the fangirls. I like shounen-ai well enough, and while I don't really care for shota, I can swallow it if it's done well. Well, this wasn't done well at all.
The story's only redemption may be that Ritsuka's social anxieties are addressed gradually throughout the series, and the subplot concerning his personality change and memories does see some progress. In fact, it might even be considered a good storyline if we ever got to find out what happened to him, but we don't! Does that even count as a spoiler? The fact that ultimately, nothing happens? The plot with Seimei seemed like it had potential at times -- all of the vague, unexplained hints did seem like they were going somewhere, and if you cocked your head sideways, you might have even been able to pick up clues to the mystery. The last episode seemed like it was trying to explain what was going on, but it was so garbled and nonsensical that it's almost impossible to draw any kind of conclusions from it, and in the end, there's nothing but a big, gaping void where all your answers should be.
The battle system in this series is something else that seemed to have potential. The concept of a Fighter and a Sacrifice is actually pretty interesting, though I think they would have survived without all the gratuitous bondage. Unfortunately, the actual fighting is never explained, and it's difficult to deduce where exactly anyone derives their power or how the mechanics of the fighting works. I really don't know why all of these things were sidestepped; it really doesn't seem like it should have taken that much time or effort to explain something that was so central to the whole Seven Moons and Seimei's murderers madness.
I haven't read the manga, but I get this distinct feeling that it's probably ten times better than this anime, because certainly it can't be worse. Like I said, the wisps of story here and there seemed to have potential, and it was just frustrating to see that almost none of them have a definite conclusion. It seems like this should have been a twenty-six episode series instead of twelve, or they should have spent more time on actual plot progression instead of random shota fluff and molestation. In the end, I think I just wasted four hours of my life watching this series, and that's about it. And even though I'm sure the manga is better, I'm left so frustrated with the series that I'm not sure I even care enough to go read it.
Addendum: The anime was apparently produced when only volumes 1-4 of the manga was out (the series is 8 volumes long), so they had limited source material. Still, I think they could have done a much better job -- certainly things like the fight system could have been addressed better anyway. And while they supposedly left the "ending" open for a possible sequel, there still could have still been an actual conclusion of some sort. But really, unless it's one of those long running shounen series, I don't think there's any reason to ever produce an anime for an unfinished series. It just leads to unpleasant bullshit like this and X/1999. :|
CHARACTER - Ritsuka is probably the best character in the series, though that isn't really saying much. In any case, he seems to be the only character that goes through any significant change throughout the series. His turmoil at the beginning of Loveless is very understandable, what with a crazy mother, no memories, and a dead brother. The sessions with his psychologist summed up his development pretty well, though it did kind of seem like a cheap way to present everything to the audience. His relationship with his friends moved up in a classic line graph as he was somewhat sporadic and inconsistent in the beginning and steadily progressed up towards "real friendship." His relationship with Soubi... I guess it really wasn't that bad; his reaction to Soubi's advances were realistic: his indignation, disgust, and eventual worry. You could see his feelings change slowly as the series went on, and the relationship did contribute to Ritsuka's overall personality progression, so to that end, I guess it was all right.
Soubi is probably a much more multi-faceted character than the Loveless anime allowed him to be; I could tell by watching, but that didn't change the fact that he didn't end up being explored all that much. Because so little is revealed about his past, with Seimei or otherwise, you never know what his motivation for anything is, which was immensely irritating and frustrating. He tells Rituska some things, but then establishes a steady history of lies, so anything he says is questionable, even if they sound like they might, or even should, be true. Whether or not he really cares for Ritsuka always seems to be questionable, and his masochistic complex complicates the matter further -- not to mention it makes things ridiculously awkward. I think, in the end, you're supposed to gather that he's changed a little (for the better) since his days with Seimei, but it's really not that convincing at all.
All of the other characters were pretty generic, and a lot of them seemed pretty damn pointless too. Rituska's school friends seemed like they could have been plucked out of any other anime Japanese school ever. Sure, they contributed to the plot and Ritsuka's development, but they really weren't that interesting to watch. Kio, Soubi's roommate? Classmate? Random friend? (Ex-)boyfriend? I have no idea what their relationship is because, surprise, they never explained, but he was only fun because he addressed some of my thoughts on Soubi, namely his apparent raging perversion and pedophilia (though Soubi consistently denied these accusations). But other than that, another generic support character? Yeah. The same goes for Ritsuka's teacher and his psychologist, and the fact that both of them were randomly in love with one of the protagonists seemed like more pointless fanservice. All of the fighter pairs sent from Seven Moons were flat and boring -- they were sent to fight, yippee. Did they have their own goals or aspirations? Who knows? Subplot with the lesbians? Seemed like a lame ploy to allow for a convenient winner of that fight. Complete lack of intrigue.
Finally... this was the original reason I had no interest in watching this series. What the hell is the point of the cat ears? What does this contribute to anything at all? It just seems like a silly gimmick to invite giggles from the audience (fangirls think about this stuff anyway, do we really need to encourage them?), and to allow for lots of suggestive dialogue in the show. The only reason I could think of for this is to have "proof" that Soubi isn't randomly raping Ritsuka ('cause it sure seems like it sometimes). Here's an idea -- if your character is so inappropriate that you have to have a lame gimmick to prove his innocence, how about not writing him to be so outrageous in the first place? Certainly Soubi didn't need to make out with Ritsuka in the middle of every battle.
ARTWORK & ANIMATION - Resoundingly average. Ritsuka was cute and Soubi was your run-of-the-mill bishounen. All the other characters were similarly plain, and the backgrounds don't really invite rounds of praise either. None of it was bad, but none of it was great either. The animation was about the same, though I really thought the effects for the fights were unimpressive and cheap.
MUSIC - I'd actually heard the opening theme, "Tsuki no Curse," long before I saw this series because it was composed by Yuki Kaijura. Unfortunately, I wasn't too impressed with it then, and I remained unimpressed with it in the series. I'm not really sure what it is about it, but it just doesn't stand up against most of Kaijura's other work. The end theme by Kaori Hikita was similarly plain. The music throughout the series actually surprised me by how random it seemed. Most series, even if they don't have particularly great music, still manage to get tracks that are appropriate for their scenes: sad tracks for sad scenes, energetic tracks for fights, etc. Loveless is probably the first series where I've been confused at their music choices for various scenes... They had weird, mecha-style battle tracks that were far, far too exciting for the scenes they were in, and then strange, melodious tracks that conflicted with conversation-heavy scenes. Occasionally, they had some nice, soft vocal tracks that seemed to fit okay, but they weren't prominent enough to balance out the other randomness.
VOICE ACTING - Average.
OVERALL - I think the best way to watch Loveless is to treat it as a drinking game. Take a shot of vodka every time Soubi says "suki dayo" ("I like you" or "I love you" depending on context and translator). You'll be mad drunk by the second episode (seriously, he's a broken record) and will thus be too wasted to realize that the entire series has little substance, never answers any of your questions, has no ending, and is ultimately unsatisfying. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to go bash in the brains of the person who recommended this series to me.
For me, the best word to describe this anime is simply "beautiful"... If you truly want to understand it you have to take a closer look and be able to see beyond the "shounen-ai" or "shotacon" tags. I can't even say it's about a homosexual love, because it goes way beyond that, at a more spiritual level. In this anime, love becomes a great source of power. The fighter/sacrifice couples simply HAVE to create a great bond between them in order to become powerful.
But love is not the main theme, it deals with a lot of other issues too. For example, the way we
project ourselves on others - Seimei appears in one way for Ritsuka, his mother or Soubi, but we find out about his true nature only later on. Another example is forgetness, memories, the link between past-present-future and essential questions that everyone asks himself or herself at a certain point in his/her life, and how 12-year-old Ritsuka is searching for a meaning of his life. Yet another example is the way people are treated in society due to certain tags they wear. In this case, I'm talking about the ct years that explicitly show the status of their sexual life and how others react to that.
Also, in this anime, true love has nothing to do with sexuality, and is expressed by strong emotions and subtile gestures.
The story has an interesting plot, and it develops little by little, and unfortunately does not end... You'll just have to read the manga too see what happens next. If you only watch the 12 episodes anime series the story doesn't really make sense at the end and it leaves you with even more questions. But it gets interesting when you start to go beneath the surface and find the truth behind all the appearences.
The art helps creating a slight dark atmosphere. Not dark as in "evil"... but more like enigmatic, mysterious. The colors are not so bright, sometimes dark, it has beautiful landscapes, and a lot of scenes occur at night, sunset or in the dark fighting setting. One of the most interesting artistic elements is the buttefly - it always accompanies Soubi's arrival, or in Soubi's paintigs, as a weapon, or in Ritsu's collection.
The soundtrack also helps a lot creating this slight dark atmosphere, and it backs up every emotion that the characters are feeling. Some emotions don't even need to be expressed by words, the music completes them and amplifies the impact they have on the viewer.
As for the characters, they are very strong and complex ones. Ritsuka is the one in search for his existence's meaning, and for life's meaning in general, feeling lost in a world he doesn't understand and that doesn't understand him. Soubi is the one that has the answers but he cannot give them to Ritsuka. When it comes to love, Soubi is the one to show Ritsuka the meaning of it, the meaning behind the appearances, the powerful and spiritual level of love. But Soubi often acts contradictory, his true feelings remain hidden, he says things very easily but sometimes his actions do not sustain his big words.
To me, it's a very unique, enjoyable combination of drama, love, philosophical questions, mistery and supernatural. The words are well chosen and always make you wonder about the truth and how much you far you have to go in order to find it. One thing is for certain - you have to ignore appearances. I really think this anime is deep and worth watching.
I believe that Loveless is MUCH MORE than just some shounen-ai story. It is so much deeper than that. It really delves into the life of a young boy who is lost in the world. Ritsuka's real name being Loveless is a strong showing of that fact.
I have to say that sadly, I was confused a few times while watching this anime. And many people I have talked to get very upset about how it was ended. They say that there were too many questions left unanswered. But think about it, in real life, there are always more questions that have not been answered.
have to give this a lower rating because, although at the start the story moved along very smoothly, near the end things got very confusing. At first it was simple. Ritsuka lost his brother, and his fighter Soubi came along because Semei ordered him to. And they fought enemies. Not too hard to understand. But then new characters were introduced and they brought up even more questions, half of which never got answered.
ART: AMAZING. The colors used in this anime are simply awe-inspiring. The way they portray Soubi as a butterfly and they show it in beautiful colors is just wonderful. The characters are all well-drawn and very cute/handsome (in Soubi's case) The noses bug me a tad, but I'll get over it. :)
SOUND: Also great. The OP song is one that I actually always listen to every time I watch an episode. When romantic moments are occuring throughout the course of the season, they play very nice background music. Same with sad moments. The music goes along well with the mood. And not even one of the character voices are annoying! Not even Yuiko. And that surprised me.
CHARACTER: I think that if I could add more favorite characters to my list, EVERY single character from this anime would be on it. There is such a good mix of personailities, from the shy Ritsuka to the serious Soubi and the playful Yuiko and the HILARIOUS Yayoi. The way the characters all relate is very nice as well. Although at times, I was confused at why Ritsuka would just let Soubi kiss him and whatnot, but still... very good interactions and love triangles. It's the whole grade school, "I like her but she likes him..." ordeal. And I sometimes like that! It makes the story much more light and humorous.
ENJOYMENT: I gave this a 9 because for the most part, I was very entertained. There were a few episodes where I did not laugh or almost cry at all. But something kept me watching this anime. I think for the most part it was the characters. But I enjoyed the fights and the love between Ritsuka and Soubi. I just wish there had been more episodes to enjoy.
Overall, I give this anime a 9. Oh... and lastly, go team Zero! *squee*
The yaoi fangirls are going to kill me here. Loveless stands up with Gravitation, Junjou Romantica, and Sekai Ichi Hatsukoi as one of those BL anime that all yaoi fans love. While out of all of those the only one I legitimately enjoyed was Gravitation, that is just a matter of personal taste. Junjou and Hatsukoi are at least somewhat decent, especially when compared to what BL anime that came before them were like. With that out of the way I can safely say that Loveless is one of the few anime that made me want to claw my own eyes out.
The story centers around
Ritsuka Aoyagi, a grade school boy who lost all of his memories two years prior to the start of the series. At that time, he also did a complete 180 in personality, going from an outgoing and popular boy who didn't have the best grades to a student with perfect grades who avoids any kind of social interaction. This apparently put such a strain on his mother that she began frequently beating him (and much worse in the manga) and claiming that he isn't her son, but someone else in her son's body. Apparently, if he does anything that the old Ritsuka wouldn't do, his mother will beat him. Things were at least tolerable for awhile, since his older brother, Seimei, protected him from his mother's beatings, but then Seimei was discovered burned to death in Ritsuka's classroom. The anime itself begins after all this when Ritsuka is transferred to a new class. A girl named Yuiko tries to befriend him, but Ritsuka regards her coldly since she's only doing it because her classmates put her up to it. After receiving harsh criticism from Ritsuka, Yuiko decides not to be pushed around by her classmates anymore and pushes for a genuine friendship with Ritsuka. After that, Ritsuka meets Soubi, a man who claims to be an old friend of Seimei's. Soubi tells Ritsuka about his arrangement with Seimei that if anything were to happen to Seimei, Soubi would "belong" to Ritsuka. Soubi turns out to be Seimei's "sentouki," a companion who would fight battles with magic, while Seimei was the "sacrifice," or the person who would take the damage in these battles. Since Seimei is now dead, Soubi must become Ritsuka's sentouki and Ritsuka will become the sacrifice.
Oh, and did I mention that it's a huge plot point that virgins have cat ears? Yeah, way to throw random sex into the plot. That's one thing I really hate.
However, after that huge info dump, nothing is really completely explained again. Most of the episodes consist of Soubi battling another pair of magic fighters and trying to protect Ritsuka in between molesting him. The story itself is so poorly explained that I had no idea what was going on half the time and ended up consulting wikipedia and the manga several times during the course of an episode, and that is not a good thing. I gave it a decent rating merely because it was interesting, but it never did anything more than that. I never really even knew why half these characters were fighting other than some taboo about the fact that Ritsuka and Soubi shouldn't be a team because both their names aren't "Loveless" or something like that. The only thing I could understand was the adult molesting the child frequently. Hooray for pedophilia, I guess! Especially on an already traumatized and broken child!
The art was...well, it was actually fairly good, at least on the characters. The backgrounds were a bit lazy most of the time, but at least the magic battles usually looked good, and the character designs were at least distinct. However, the style reminded me a lot of Higurashi in that, while it used bright colors, it always looked like there was a film over the animation giving it a weird misty look that seemed out of place, though that could be because of the poorly done backgrounds.
The sound was easily the best part of the show. I can't really say the dub of either language was particularly outstanding, but the soundtrack was done by Yuki Kajiura. 'Nuff said. It's far from being her best work, but it's Yuki Kajiura nonetheless. What's not to like?
The characters are not so lucky. Most of them are boring, unlikable, or underdeveloped. The worst offender of this is Soubi himself. Since he's one of the two main characters, he should be someone the audience can cheer for and want to see succeed, or at least care somewhat about what he's doing. I really didn't feel anything toward him, even when part of his history as revealed. He has very little personality, and he's constantly flip-flopping when it comes to his actions. I can at least understand his motives of wanting to keep Ritsuka safe, but it's hard to relate to that when he's such a shameless pedophile. The only reason I gave the characters a decent rating is because of Ritsuka. He wouldn't have much of an effect if he was a side character, but as a main character he does well. He has a very distinct personality, and his development is very well handled. Sure, he starts off rather depressed at first, but he has every right to be, and unlike some anime characters he does grow quite a lot. His circumstances barely change at all, so the fact that he's able to change his attitude is impressive.
However, the fact that Ritsuka's such a good character actually works against the series. When you actually care about a character, it's not enjoyable to watch him suffer so much without any happy ending in sight. Nobody who knows about his abuse is doing anything about it, even Soubi who claims to love him. Soubi's sexual advances on a boy who's underage even in Japan, especially one who has enough mental trauma on top of amnesia and a possible personality disorder, is just disgusting. I continued watching until the end in order to see something good finally happen to this kid, and it really doesn't. I could barely stand a moment of this, so the enjoyment factor was very low. I was able to enjoy the few quiet moments Ritsuka had with his friends, at least, but that's about it.
All in all, there were a few things in this series that were okay, and the main character is really good. However, it's just unpleasant to watch and I find the fact that all of this is fetishized to be disgusting. Any time I hear someone praising this series, I feel a little sick inside. I suppose people are allowed to like what they want, but I personally find this show terrible. The overall score of 3 out of 10 is surprisingly generous, and I only gave it because of Ritsuka and the soundtrack by Yuki Kajiura. That's all.
Loveless could some times be a confusing anime but it's irresistible
The story revolves around Aoyagi Ritsuka,a 12-year old who transfers with a mom having countless mental breakdowns which leads to child abuse dealing physical pain. Two years ago Ritsuka had lost memories and became a different person, from there his brother Seimei becomes important in his life. The anime begins with the death of Seimei which keeps Ritsuka wondering who killed his brother. The story truely begins when Ritsuka meets Agatsuma Soubi, Seimei's former fighter, and all the unexplained mystery comes, well you must watch it to see. It's true that to some the battles
seem like it's not needed but let's just say if there were no battles, most likely Ritsuka and Soubi will have no bond.
The art/animation is okay, it's like a regular anime it's not too special, but the cat ears are quite creative and the battles combines fantasy and reality, the art makes the unnatural events possibly believable.
This anime's sound is nice overall, in my opinion this anime has very nice music and sound which creates more intrest to an anime watcher's .
The characters are creative and has a way of it's own, all the characters seems like complete opposite in a way but fits perfectly together. There's always a bond that ties the characters together.
This anime is very enjoyable, but there are scenes at school where Yuiko gets too annoying, that's just the beginning, the episodes in some way becomes better one after another.
Overall this anime is worth watching, I would highly recommend this anime to probably anyone. This anime may suprise you at times and may not be what you would expect so be on caution.
My first shonen-ai anime. I didn’t even think it was shonen-ai, so it caught me by surprise. I thought it was about something dark and creepy – guess not.
I watched anime with shonen-ai premises before, and have watched one shojo-ai anime, but this anime is really different. At first it was hard to believe/handle. I didn’t even like it at first because the shonen-ai was very surprising (didn’t like it until episode 3). I’m a good girl, from a conservative family, so I’ve never seen anything like it. The fact that the main character is a 12 year old boy who’s involved with a male
college student is kinda scary, but surprisingly, beautiful.
Yes, that’s the word I’m looking for. The anime would have been much better if it focused more on the boy-boy love, and less about the battles and whatnot. In fact, the spell battles and seven moons were a bit vague – or maybe I just focused too much on the shonen –ai. In any case, the whole concept was overshadowed by the shonen-ai.I think that’s expected from the original creator who started working on Gundam Wing doujinshis.
The nekomimis threw me off at first – I just didn’t get why they were there. I thought they had nekomimis because catgirls/boys are popular among a lot of anime fans, with me as an exception. I found out later they were a sign of someone’s virginity, or lack thereof.
Characters were interesting – Of course, most of them are self-proclaimed perverts (the fact I like all of them scares me). For some reason they’re not bothered by the fact that Soubi likes someone way, way younger than him. It’s not just him too – Ritsuka’s psychologist seems to have a slight crush on him as well. Anyway, almost all of them are likable (and almost all of them wore glasses, which I love), even Yuiko who irritated me at first. She’s not so bad. I have the same opinion about Yayoi, the boy who’s hopelessly in love with Yuiko. I didn’t like him at first either, but he’s actually very funny, and he reminded me of Tamaki from Ouran.
I just wish that the other characters had their fair share of lime light. I can’t even remember the name of Soubi’s hot teacher, and that Nagisa – sensei, I don’t know much about her either. The character management is just done poorly.
I’m a bit iffy about the drawing style. The backgrounds are marvelous, like delicate water color paintings. On the character design is sub par. The drawings tend to waver a lot, and the bodies are way off proportion (specially Ritsuka – he looks so skinny). Despite the wavering drawing style, there’s still a tasteful amount of bishonens. Soubi happens to be my favorite. The colors I don’t like that much either – the colors look a bit too pale, and I prefer more vibrant colors. There was minimal use of CG, which is OK, since it’s just complimentary. CG was used a lot for the fight scenes, but the fight scenes still needed work. They weren\'t exciting or fun to watch at all.
I actually like the voice acting, since the seiyus brought out their characters personalities. I am very delighted at the fact that the seiyus for Soubi, Ritsuka and Yukio are all familiar to me – I’ve seen, rather, heard of their work in other series before. Soubi’s seiyu, which is Katsuyuki Konishi is actually the seiyu for Kenta Usui from Karin. I still can’t believe it’s the same person since Soubi and Kenta have very different personalities, as well as manner of speaking.
The music was so-so. The background music is what I would like to call, music you’d hear from a creepy carnival at night, and it would make you want to either freak out or kill yourself – I mean that in a good way. It matches the theme and feel of the anime, after all. I like the opening theme too – I have heard it many times before I’ve even watched the series. The ending song was a bit dreary and depressing, but that’s OK.
Story wise, it didn’t impress me. Bishonen-wise, it sure did. I’m hoping there’s going to be a sequel, even if it’s a bit late to do that. Like I said, some issues were left unresolved, and I want to catch another glimpse of the gorgeous bishies – after all, this is what I love the most about the anime.
Before I begin, I am going to say it outright - I HATE YAOI. Yaoi-fan girls drive me crazy. I have yet to meet some mature ones, but hey, they probably exist right? And guess what? I'm a girl too and I hate yaoi :o le gasp. Also I rarely will review anime I hate with a passion (unless DBZ) and this is the only other exception.
When someone said I should watch this - I watch about 5 minutes of episode 1 and stopped. Why? I read the plot. What is wrong with the plot you ask?
To delve into what society is today, homosexuality
is becoming more acceptable, which is, of course, what you would expect from a growing society. However - PEDOPHELIA IS NOT. Ritsuka is 12 years old-not even in puberty, and some creepy old guy named Soubi is kinda ... making moves on him? Ummm...yea, pedophelia is realllyyyyy acceptable, hmm? I'm being sarcastic. Though I detest yaoi, if they were closer in age, it would not be so bad, but poor Ritska is 12, Soubi 20 -something years old. Honestly, if anyone thinks this is "cute" or "aww, its love!" you need to get a reality check. Last I heard, when some poor unfortunate child is a victim of pedophelia, most people get angry and ask why someone would do such a thing.
This anime makes pedophelia seem natural, which, it is not. It's creepy, sick and twisted and it makes me feel ashamed that girls like me find this stuff appealing.
Also, don't think I'm a homophobe for hating yaoi. I'm not. Get your facts straight.
To the sane people who still believe pedophelia is just ... NO, then I say - you are a godsend. To those who find it adorable like in this anime...all I gotta say it...why?
It took me a long time to finally sit down and watch this anime and not because of the shonen ai themes...because of the cat ears. Normally I'm just not a cat-ear type of girl, but after watching the first episode or two and realizing the importance of the cat ears and their overall symbolism in the show I was incredibly hooked.
The story was beautiful and well written, however, I gave the story a 9 because I believe that there was a lot left unsaid. It was almost as if they were waiting for a second season that never came to ease up some questions
about Seven Moons and Seimei. Aside from that it was just brilliant. The characters are easy to love and relate and you find yourself feeling their emotions as the story progresses. The story deals with the issues of pain and loss and the light of hope that new love brings.
I thought the music throughout the series was also very beautiful and alluring. So overall I gave this show a 9. It is one of my favorites that I've seen in a while and I ended up watching the entire series in one night.
While I recognise the strength of emotion in this series, and the beauty, I was never able to get past the fact that Sobi is a pedophile. There is nothing wrong with Shonen-ai, but this goes way beyond that. You have a man in his twenties chasing after a boy who is 12, barely starting puberty. Even if Loveless was in his later teens, 15 or 16, I'd be able to deal with that, but 12? It's sick. I could understand if it was a brotherly love, Loveless lost his brother, and finds it hard to believe that people could love him. While they do
handle the age gap gracefully, it's too much for me.
But the child molesting isn't the only thing I disliked. There is never any explanation of why the battles go on, what happened to Loveless' brother, etc. Some stories can get away with unanswered questions, but not this one.
I originally watched the series, not knowing about this pedophilia, and I liked some of the concepts. The society is based much on sexuality, in fact they have cat ears and tails that the people lose when they lose their virginity. It's unique, and I would like it if it wasn't for Sobi being a child molester.
If you’re not a manga reader, you probably wonder why whenever a manga becomes an anime, they’re will be fans insisting that the manga is so much better. Usually, that’s debatable – anime does have the benefits of things like color and sound, and if there are major plot changes some might be for the better. On the other hand, there are also anime adaptations that are inferior to their respective manga not because of what’s in the anime but rather what’s not. Oftentimes, short anime series will be made from long manga that end up with a made-up, rushed, or inconclusive ending. This is
definitely the main weakness of Loveless, an anime that’s suffers much from its tiny length.
Whether you’ve read the manga or not, Loveless has a great setting. It’s much like our world, but with a notable difference of people being born with cat ears and a tail that they lose with their virginity. That alone makes for an interesting concept if done in a non-perverted way – and for the most part, it is. But Loveless isn’t deprived of a good plot and expect to cover it up with the great setting. Rather, the plot itself is fairly unique and beautifully developed. Ritsuka, a twelve-year-old boy still recovering from the mysterious murder of his older brother, Seimei, happens upon Soubi, an old friend of said brother. He finds out that there’s more to Seimei’s death than meets the eye: he was killed by an organization known as “Septimal Moon,” and was involved in a type of bizarre battling based solely on words. In addition to his quest to avenge his brother and rediscover himself, Ritsuka becomes part of the battles himself. It’s a great example of a plot that creates a lot of questions that are eventually answered slowly enough to draw the viewer in but quickly enough to keep things interesting. That said, this is the part of the series that suffers most from short-anime syndrome, and the ending that the anime’s writers threw together is ambiguous and doesn’t provide a satisfying conclusion, a major flaw to an otherwise ambiguous and well-executed plot.
Fortunately, however, this lack of plot resolution has no negative effect on the cast, which is full of unique people. Ritsuka, in particular, is moody and hesitant, a far cry from other protagonists in similar series. Because of this, the relationships he creates with the rest of the cast are often unexpected yet beautifully done. Soubi, meanwhile, is a bit more typical of the older, experienced type that is seen often in shoujo anime and manga, but since he’s actually quite submissive in some ways he doesn’t give off the air of a walking stereotype like you might expect. The supporting characters are similarly well-made; from Ritsuka’s oftentimes downright adorable classmates other fighters that all have their own stories and motivation (and some of which are apt to cause tears in the eyes of viewers) there’s no lack of memorable characters. (A word of warning, though: if you tend to dislike characters that are a bit whacked in the head a la Evangelion or Utena, Loveless’ cast may not leave the same impression on you.)
Even with this great cast of characters, there’s another part of Loveless that is praised more often: the art and animation. That’s certainly a justified claim: frankly, the series looks gorgeous. The animation is smooth and remarkably easy to follow, especially considering the style of battling that could potentially be quite difficult. These battles happen on a mostly-black background that’s just perfect for emphasizing the important things: characters and attacks. Coming from someone who usually has trouble following action scenes, these are very enjoyable to watch. Outside of battle, the backgrounds are simply breathtaking and the animation is fluid all over. The one disadvantage of the art is character design; primarily I’m not much fond of the faces. Overall, there’s very little not to like when seeing this series.
The lovely art is paired with almost as lovely music. The opening song, “Tsuki no Curse,” is a haunting melody that sets the mysterious and somewhat melancholy tone of the series, and both the lyrics and singer work with the music to make the song sound great (if not a bit high). The ending song, “Michiyuki” is similar in mood, calmer but just as dark; it really wraps up each episode nicely. The background music doesn’t disappoint, either; the best pieces are fully atmospheric without being intrusive, while others are less effective but still very much listenable.
In technical terms, Loveless is great. In literary terms, Loveless is well-made. Still, the series has a reputation among some viewers as being creepy, even pedophilic, while others find it a cute piece of BL anime. However, both of these are shallow and about as accurate as saying that My-Hime is about breasts or Gankutsuou is a mecha series. In some respects, they are true, but in the big picture they’re utter falsehoods. Loveless may be about catboys and girl, and have blatantly sexual situations between an adult man and a young boy, but it’s no standard fanservice series. The somewhat twisted relationship between Ritsuka and Soubi isn’t just there for kicks; it’s a unique dynamic that is never portrayed as anything but unusual, and it’s a less-conventional way of helping these characters develop. Enjoying Loveless doesn’t require a shouta-loving soul; it requires an ability to look past the surface and think about the complexities of human relationships. It’s a series that requires some real reflection after viewing, but it’s definitely worth that thought.
Okay, so as a younger man learning about his own sexuality, I adored this anime and the romance of an older man taking and caring for a younger boy. This was a highly romanticised idea in my adolescent brain.
Coming back and watching it again, ten years later, I find myself exceptionally uncomfortable. This story is about a paedophile grooming a boy (yes yes, technically he is a hebephile, but general society does not see that distinction). I guess, due to age, I identify with the adult of the series more than the child, and as an adult I find this repugnant.
I had to drop it,
refusing to watch it again.
If you are young, and fantasise about being with an older male, this will appeal to you. If you are an older male who fantasises about being with a young boy… well, get counselling. Seriously. Or stick with shounen-ai or yaoi that is more age appropriate and, well, less paedophilic.
I can't speak for how a fujoshi might view this, but for me, this is a definite no. Probably doesn't help that my tastes have moved more to bara these days.
let's see...i have to say this anime has no redeeming features what to ever! it was horrid and i do NOT recommend you waste a single moment of your precious existence on this shit. i knew it was terrible when i made the choice to watch it but i still did because i thought i would be worth making fun of but it's not even worth that, trust me man!
STORY: story was very unoriginal ,very poorly developed and left me bored out of my mind in by the second episode. And i honestly do think they could have developed it if they wanted to even
within the 13 episodes they had cause most of the anime is the characters doing NOTHINGGGGGGGGG!!!!!!!!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! I UNDERSTAND THE CONCEPT AND STORY IS SHITTY BUT YOU COULD AT LEAST TRY EXPLAINING THINGSSSSSSSS!!!! oh and the second last episode is a festival episode. not only that but literally nothing happens asides from this random dude popping up in front of this middle school student (i don't recall their names BECAUSE THEY ARE UNWORTHY BUT ANYWHO) and starts telling him he loves him and was chosen by his dead brother to become his servant. that's it! and then there's these random fights that are completely unexplained and those battles are supposed to be them "casting spells" in each other's direction. oh and by spells i mean them saying a single random word like " negate" or "defend". apparently who ever made this has read the dictionary. congrats! and of course the cat ears (which are not explained in the anime) that apparently represent onE'S VIRGINITY???????????? WHAT?? HOW FUCKING DUMB IS THAT???? SO YES STORY IS SHIT!!!!!ALSO THE MAIN CHARACTER'S REAL NAME IS LOVELESS APPEARANTLY! ISN'T THAT DUMB? DON'T YOU THINK THAT'S DUMB? PLEASE DON'T WATCH THIS!
ART: i've seen worse but it was still bad!! their eyes were sinking into their faces! at least i got that impression! the main character's blond lover person has a chin he could stab you with. the effects in the battles were terrible!! and every time they had fire, it looked like it didn't fit in at all! not to mention all bad use of negative space throughout the thing. oh and the butterflies...man they tried sO FUCKING HARD ON THE BUTTERFLIES YOU DON'T EVEN UNDERSTAND!!!!!!!!!!! BUT THEY FAILED! THEY FAILED...YEAH. ALSO THE CONCEPT ART IS SHITTY AND MEDIOCRE AND SIMPLY LACKING
SOUND: the opening was so...high pitched...like really high, it sounded almost squeaky to me. and i didn't bother listening to the ending. the sound track made no sense. the music didn't fit the scene most of the time. oh and they try so hard to make some parts sound epic by randomly adding an electric guitar but it didn't fit in at all and failed. i didn't like it.
CHARACTERS: the character designs like i mentioned were shit. the character had no development what so ever throughout the thing and some characters didn't even serve a purpose in the thing at all! scratch that all the characters served no purpose except for the two guys and maybe the ugly pink haired girl. the only character that develops is loveless and by develop i mean he goes from being the annoying ass tsundere who yells at everyone to not like him and then complains about being loveless which as i mentioned is his FUCKING NAME, to liking people but still being an annoying ass tsundere
ENJOYMENT: i laughed at how dumb it was in the opening and half the first episode but then was bored out of my mind.
OVERALL: IT'S SHITTY!!! DON'T WATCH IT!! DON'T EVEN CONSIDER IT!!! DON'T EVEN LOOK AT ITTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LET'S PRETEND IT DOESN'T EXIST...YEAH
DISCLAIMER: I “thank” AWC’s Random Challenge for making me watch this… and honestly thank my friend who suffered together with me.
Also, there are a few spoilers ahead.
There are shounen-ai anime. There are bad shounen-ai anime (which are, let’s be honest, almost all of them). And then there is Loveless, a cacophony of things that just shouldn’t exist.
Yeah, of course, there is this really deep plot about Ritsuka being Loveless and the other guy being Beloved…. lol, nope, there’s not. Let’s be honest, this anime is about a little boy being wooed by a grown up, adult man. I’m not even kidding.
But let’s start from
the beginning. I’m presenting to you 5 reasons why Loveless is a bad thing and every “fujoshi” or whoever who enjoys this is either a 13 years old OR just a sick person:
One of the main aspects of Loveless are cat ears and tail. Cute, right? What’s better than a little boy with cat ears and fluffy tail. …I’ll tell you what. How about a little boy with cat ears and fluffy tail… without attaching to it some weird “plot” device? Quotes because it’s not related to the plot at all. Let’s say I’m writing a story and I want a cute cat boy in it. How do I justify it? Maybe I’ll just add cat ears to everyone? Ooor I could make this world full of animal-hybrids? No, I’ve got it! IF THE PERSON HAS CAT EARS. THEN IT MEANS. THAT THEY’RE A VIRGIN! YES, GENIUS!
…..I get it, it’s probably part of some Japanese weird thing or something. We know Japanese. They are… pretty special in some aspects. But how exactly is okay to just let show off someone’s privacy? It’s everyone’s own choice how to handle their virginity and yes, if someone still has their “cat ears” in 23 it’s completely okay!
2) People’s view of Shinonome
… This should perhaps be 1.5, because it’s mainly a continuation of the first point. I myself really disliked Ritsuka’s teacher, but that was because of her character (or… “character” :’)). Shinonome, as a 23 years old teacher who still has her ears, is often a target of remarks about her it. Seme-san… sorry, Soubi, refers to her as “childish” despite her being older then him. And why is that? Try to guess…
I’ll say it again… IT’S OKAY TO BE VIRGIN IN 23! SHE COULD BE AN ASEXUAL OR SOMETHING! OR SHE’S SAVING HERSELF FOR THE ONE TRUE LOVE! OR I DON’T KNOW! JUST LET HER BE!
3) The psychologist
Don’t get me wrong, it’s completely okay to have a psychiatrist or a psychologist. Everyone has their problems and problems exist to be solved. But what’s not okay is… a grown ass psychologist woman with… a weird crush on her patient?? Who is a 12 years old boy?? What even was that?! What was the point?! Was it there just for the fangirls to have someone to hate on, or what?! Psychologists are supposed to be profesionals and this is casting a really bad light on this important profession.
4) Ritsuka the Sex Bomb
Yes, I mean that Ritsuka. That 12 years old little boy who should go play football (…soccer? ‘murica?) or computer games or something. There were just a few characters who DIDN’T want to get the D… or ass… or I don’t know. I have to remind you, that he is 12 years old. Twelve years old.
There he is, the awesome Seme-san, who actually has more than 1,000 Member Favorites on MAL (just… why). He’s a 20 years old art student (let’s say it again: TWENTY years old). His favorite hobbies include fondling Ritsuka, kissing Ritsuka, stalking Ritsuka, breaking into Ritsuka’s room through the window and, finally, offering Ritsuka to “take his ears away”. And we all know what’s that a metaphor for.
Also, he’s a masochist who wants Shota-kun to punish him. RIP in pieces.
BONUS ROUND) The Relationship
Just to say it again for those in the back rows. The main plot of the story is twenty years old guy being lovey dovey with a twelve years old boy. Soubi’s maybe not a pedophile by psychiatric terminology (I’ll suppose that Ritsuka is already in puberty…) but, you know… I hope that I don’t have to say how much of not okay it is.
Yeah, that would be it. The author was either smoking something when writing this or just has some really big issues. The plot, aside the gays™, was non-existent and most of the characters were really, really creepy. And not the good kind of creepy.
But this is a review, so I should say also something nice. Uhm… the canon lesbian ship was a nice surprise? But, well, it’s Japan. Name one canon lesbian ship in anime that doesn’t have a nice, mostly healthy relationship. Seriously, if the author can write a cute lesbian pair why not also write a cute gay pair? It’s not that hard.
I searched far and wide to download the rare English dub DVD release for this anime and to my disappointment; it is one of the most dreadful and dull anime that I have cross paths with.
I can see that the author is struggling and striving for a good story. She used a lot of symbolisms, life problems, and tries to make a sort of fantasy battle anime combined with romantic drama.
First of all, you cannot just make an unknown and boring character jump right ahead with another character without even explaining the connection between the two because viewers cannot relate and feel
what is being felt by the said character. Yaoi scenes felt lifeless because of the distance between the audience and the character; henceforth, the romantic lines are rubbish and sound cheesy.
Although she, the author, have the desire to express herself with common life problems, such as the users and the used, loving one’s self, the consequences of love and so on and so forth, the characters are lifeless, edgeless, brainless, colorless and everythingless and killed the entire story. If they have extended the anime into two seasons and give more depth to the story and the characters, it might just be worth watching.
When I first saw the anime, I think it immediately gave me anime-cat-phobia. Yeah it is cute but I cannot see the relevance of cats to the story. I understand stories with demons who has usually has something to do with death, deals and such, but when I see cat people, it tells me that they want the story to be cute and that is all. It reminds me of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s broadway musical “Cats.” The difference between Andrew’s Cats and this type of cat though is that his cats has better, more distinct and fierce personalities and does not aim to be cute.
The sound is good at least. Thank my God of Conquest for giving this show something good to remember by – that its music is good enough and the sound was not that bad at all.
A character’s personality, for me, is one of the most important elements in an anime or in any piece of literature because they are the ones who drive the story into a good route where the audience could enjoy. The characters are way below the line and do not even feel realistic when they say their lines. I am not sure if the author is aiming for male character with a strong feminine side or what. If so, Ritsuka feels like an awkward male character who immediately surrendered to a female life under the hands of Soubi. Soubi is one of the most robotic and monotonous characters that I had ever came across with – in other words, boring. Yuiko, on the other hand is an annoying, stupid and a useless female character. Characters like her should only exist in a show that has characters with strong and influential personalities. I could go on but there are so many characters with, if not annoying and boring, unrealistic personalities.
I watched the anime before reading the manga, as my friends advised I shouldn't. I admit, the concept was harder to grasp and overall a bit more confusing that it would've been if I'd read the manga before hand. I really love the relationship between Ritsuka-kun and his peers. His wit and view of things is very accurate for someone who recently lost something special to them. He is very observant and also very hesitant. His relationship with Soubi is harder to grasp at a younger age. It seems to be overall complicated, but as it develops; it becomes more of a heart pull. I
became very attached to this work in such little time, and was sad when it came to an end. It was very beautiful, and very worth my time. Such a beautiful story, not to mention the anime and manga were flawless. ♥
Highs: Engaging side characters; fascinating environment; crisp animation
Lows: Side characters play very little role; plot leaves many questions; confusing at times; in the end, nothing happens
Normally I am not one to take the time to watch a shounen-ai anime, although the animation and the plot intrigued me enough to give Loveless a chance. I was already taken in by the interesting setting; in which majority of the people in the world have cat ears on the tops of their heads. Seemed like something different and new.
Loveless starts off normally, with a young boy with a lot of angst and problems over his lost brother. The
premise seems interesting enough as before you know it, he runs into his brother’s friend, which at that time; Loveless begins to show its shounen-ai side. The abundance of characters in this anime is fantastic and each of them has great personalities that grow on you. One of the characters specifically, Hawatari Yuiko brings a lot of energy to the screen and brightens up an otherwise gloomy show. Although, the significance of these side characters are slim to none. They play a very little part in the actual plot and could have easily been written out, which is a shame since the side characters are far more interesting then the main ones.
There were a lot of ideas thrown out in Loveless, but very few of them were actually explored. This is truly a disappointment, there was so much that could have been drawn from the plot and in the end it didn’t live up to it’s full potential. The abrupt ending could be partially to blame for this because Loveless lacks any sort of resolution, leaving us wondering if that was really in the end, with more questions rather then answers.
Loveless is a unique anime, with a great environment and engaging side characters, but seriously lacks in the department of story and plot. If bishounen and cat boys are your thing, then Loveless might be a title you want to consider, but otherwise, you’ll have no love for Loveless.
Just a short overlook:)I don't write long reviews.
The story itself is a romance that takes place during the pique of a young boys adolescence. The feelings of an unbiased perception of love is very evident and further delves into the inhibitions of what most slice of life animes aim for but with a more realistic character development. The situations are very similar to the struggles of an adolescent; the main character called "Loveless" fitting as it is, suffers from lack of self esteem, a mother with grief issues from the recent loss of his older brother. He truly is alone and lost though through the
series the true drama is how he copes with this is explained as a romance of sorts developes with an older man Soubi. The action plot is fair and remains mysterious until the end circling issues surrounding his brother mysterious death. The artwork is very good, not fantastic but very fitting for this anime. The audio is done well and the theme songs are very nice as well. All in all it's a rather good show to watch.
OK so here goes my first review, wish I could say I'm writing this cause I loved the anime so much, but I really can't. I actually wish I hadn't wasted my time with it.
First off I have to give the story a 3 and here's why:
When I rate a story I take into account the ending too, if your like me this read this. The ending isn't really one, to me it felt like a longer series that just got cut off. They don't explain the big secret mystery of the whole series, and the last episode actually left me with more questions than
i had before, like they were trying to hook you for a season 2 that never came. I find that kind of thing very annoying! Oh and it feels like they drop you in the middle of another world without explaining any of the rules.
Now Art, that i give a 7:
Yeah, the best thing in this whole series for me was the art, I thought the style was nice, the ears and tails cute, colors well defined and I felt what the characters were supposed to feel a lot through the looks, good job on the art people.
6 for the sound:
The sound was fair to me, it wasn't annoying but nothing really wowed me either.
Now this could just be me here, but I found the characters hard to relate to. One guy is all like 'I love you because I was ordered to' and the other at first seems to hate everyone. I must admit the latter one was easier to understand as the story went on and you see into his past a bit, but they didn't give enough on the older one, the one who loves due to an order, to make him really relatable to me. So for me he was kinda flat and odd.
I say this because of the ending mostly. I mean the whole series they keep building you up with this whole mystery thing that keeps you watching, hoping for a reveal, only to go, WTH at the end. They explain nothing really and actually leave you with even more questions at the end, which I find Very Annoying!
So Overall 4:
Interesting at first, makes you want to know all the secrets, makes you want to understand the characters and see where they will end up. In the end leaves you wholly disappointed. Only thing I can say is it probably came from a manga and if so maybe that is better or if you know the manga you might get and like this. Otherwise, if your like me and just wanted to enjoy an interesting story and romance, DON'T BOTHER!
P.S. sorry if this offends anyone who actually liked the show, but this irritated me so much I had to write this.
Loveless is an anime that teaches us that even the emo-est of dudes can learn how to care about himself and other people now that he's got himself a boyfriend.
This is the story of an angsty emo 12-year old who falls into a deep depression after his beloved onii-chan's tragic death. He hasn't smiled or cared about anyone or anything since the incident. All he wants to know is who killed his brother. Ritsuka's life is boring, dull, and stupid and ain't no one got a chance at turnin' that frown upside down. Until...a random older man named Soubi comes along to sweep him
off his feet.
So apparently this Soubi knows the brother and they used to be boyfriends or something. Probably. And then all of a sudden these kids with weird ninja skills start a battle with them in the middle of the park. The whole battle thing isn't really explained very well and it just sort of happens during random points in the series. All of the people who battle them seem to have info on the boy's brother but no one really tells him anything. The plot doesn't have a whole lot of substance and there isn't really very much going on besides the random battles and the development of the relationship between Ristuka and Soubi.
As for the romance aspect, there are a few scenes here and there between the two guys but it isn't super apparent. Heck there were even a couple of scenes between two genderbent doppelgangers of the main couple that felt way more romantic than the interactions we got with Ritsuka and Soubi.
The only other complaint I have about their relationship is the fact that Ritsuka is 12 and Soubi looks to be in his early 20's. Though that's just typical yaoi stuffs. To be fair though, all of the kids look and dress like high school students. The only indication that they're in elementary school is how immature they act and the fact that they don't wear school uniforms. That still doesn't make it any less weird though. But at least they aren't doing the do or anything so I guess that's a plus.
Most of the characters are bland and don't have much substance to them. All of the girls are crybabies who don't do anything except create unneeded "comedic" love dodecahedrons with everyone (except the psychologist she's pretty cool) and basically only exist to further along the little bit of character development Ristuka gets over the course of the series.
Overall the show isn't bad. But it isn't very good either. It's pretty uninspired and doesn't really offer anything outside of the norm. It's also innocent( if you put aside the large age gap ) and doesn't delve into the gross rapey territory of the bl genre. So if you're looking for a nice show about gay dudes that isn't over-sexualized this show may be for you.
It's a pretty good anime, if you're into pedophilia!
Loveless is the story of a prepubescent boy who is being romantically groomed and pursued by an adult man. If that's your bag, then have a blast, because this is probably the biggest and most popular show that has been officially endorsed by NAMBLA. If you want cat boy yaoi without the unfortunate overtones of Loveless, then go play Lamento: Beyond the Void. If you want a yaoi without any of the creepy undertones, then you don't want yaoi.
With that said, it is a shame that the author of Loveless is probably one or two
years away from being arrested for statutory rape, because everything else about the show is pretty okay. It's not great, mind you, but it's more than serviceable, especially considering that the hook for most people was "cat boys do gay stuff." This show could have potentially gone mainsteam if Ritsuka had been aged up a few years.