This show should be watched by aspiring writers. Its greatest contribution is that it shows how a project can have tremendous charm, good redeeming characteristics, and yet fail when considered as a whole.
A gruesome autopsy can be fascinating to a scientific observer; this show can be fascinating to a creative artist who hopes to learn how art projects can go wrong.
Let us start with the redeeming characteristics. The art designs are charmingly retro, featuring costumes, weapons, vehicles, and technology spanning a period from about 1930 to 1955. If you love World War II costumes, you might watch the entire show just to
see the visual designs.
The lead voice talents are good. The music is initially redeemed by the opening theme, but the rest of the music is mediocre and the whole sound fails to inspire, draw the project together, or create a cohesive mood. (By contrast, [i]Ergo Proxy[/i] takes a similarly small selection of music and uses it to create a mood.)
The characters are somewhat stereotypical. Further, they are puppets in the service of an idiotic plot, so they behave irrationally. The characters are usually armed to the teeth with deadly firearms, but they are fervent pacifists, so they usually refuse to shoot. If they must squeeze a trigger, they are sure to fire warning shots or to target something nonlethal. This show prettifies warfare by showing shiny planes that can be wrecked with their pilots always parachuting to safety. There are tens of thousands of opportunities for death and destruction - and in 26 episodes, there are fewer than half a dozen injuries. Characters can stand a few yards away from a dynamite bomb, with no ill effects; but they can be rendered conveniently unconscious by punches. It's pretty standard for heroic anime teenagers to be passionately in love with each other and yet incapable of touching each other, but the shyness in this series goes beyond anime-standard silliness into self-parody. In the face of this idiotic pseudo-violence and pseudo-tension, the plot holes, though numerous and annoying, are scarcely worth mentioning.
Somehow I found the whole mess to be surprisingly watchable. There are some ambitious, artsy flashbacks that tugged my heartstrings, and some ambitious supporting characters that failed to move me. There were a few suspenseful sequences that actually evoked World War II era commando tactics; there were some cute moments; there was at least one good laugh. If nothing else, there is a morbid fascination in asking, "How much cheesier can this get?" because the answer is always, "Soooo much cheesier."
Some viewers have suggested watching the first half and skipping the second half. I disagree; if one is going to stare into this abyss, one had better do it whole-heartedly. I recommend that most viewers should skip this entirely, but aspiring writers should bear with the cheesiness for all 26 episodes. It builds character.
Allison and Lillia is a great adventure that takes place high up in the vast blue skies, while it isn't the greatest adventure title you'll see, it does remain a good watch!
Despite this title having many military action elements to it, its actually all kept pretty darn clean. There are rarely any deaths that take place, most of which are the bad guys, and there is no blood to speak of with it, which is both a positive and negative depending on your taste. Now without posting any spoilers, I can tell you that this series is divided into two arks: Allison's Tales (first
half), and Lillia's tale (second half).
Starting with the first half about Allison and Will, things start off kinda slow but begin to get better and better as the story progresses, and by episode 3 begins to pick up. (though the pacing of both story sequences do stay rather slow throughout, just so your aware) Basically Allison and her friend Will are trying to find the legendary hidden treasure in order to unite the two countries together. This concept works well, as the two make their way into the adventure many plot twist and friends are found along the way. This series is also great with its little detective work bits that the viewer can try to figure out along with them. Still, some may find that the overall plot moves way too slow, (this is true with both story arks) as they seem show a lot of friendly chat between the characters a lot, which can be seen as fillers. On Allison's last episode everything is concluded and will leave you with a smile on your face and good satisfaction! However once Lillia's story begins you may get the impression that the writers didn't know where to take the story anymore, as it basically has Lillia and her friend Trieve wandering about aimlessly with no real goal as to what they are both trying to accomplish (or the villains for that matter, we never even find out who the main one was at the end) with the story. Lillia herself can come off as stuck up and Trieze as cowardly, that they just don't have the appeal of the cast before them, which makes it hard to actually care about these characters. Not the worst by any means, just a bit of a stumbling block I felt.
The ending itself leaves much to be desired though, as it leaves a bunch of plot holes in the end and most questions and circumstances unresolved. A good story overall, I just wished they would have developed the second half more.
Truly, the character development is indeed good, as all of them do actually grow closer and closer to one another. All characters are likable for the most part and have distinct personalities to them, and never come off as redundant. Not to mention Allison trying catch Will's interest about her is also nice, even though he is a dense as they come when dealing with it, he never comes off as annoying, plus the way they are carried out is charming and cute! While there isn't a large variety with the character personalities, it still hold its own. Some may feel that the second half characters are a bit more of an annoyance, which they kinda are, but this at least helps in the variety department to some extent!
The animation done by Madhouse is good overall, while its not their best work by any means, Allison and Lillia is a nice anime to look at, what with well detailed characters and scenes. They just never really went that extra mile to make it really stand out. As I felt it was missing the overall colorful affect of other adventure titles that came before it. The character design, while not exactly unique, does really give you the feeling of being in this era!
The music is very charming, with a catchy soft sung opening and ending, with great live orchestral Background soundtracks to compliment, that definitely fit the series to a T and give you the sense that adventure looms right over the horizon.! It won't appeal to all music lovers out there, but most will agree that it works for the kind of atmosphere they were going for. The voice acting is also spot on, and you will find that they really took the time to find the right voice actors for the right roles. My only complaint was that some of the voices were starting to get a bit on the repetitive side.....especially regarding some of the male villains. Kinda sounded like it was the same guy doing some of them.
Bottom Line: 7/10
Even though the overall story is quite slow paced and has its short comings (which might kill it for some), Allison and Lillia still remains an entertaining watch! I feel this series truly could have been great had they developed Lillia's story ark a little more. As it stands now though, it is still a fun little adventure despite it all!
Allison and Lillia has a rather unusual flavour to it for an anime series. While you can see from a mile away that it is an action/adventure series with an underpinning romance subplot, it carries itself very differently from all other anime I’ve seen in this broader genre, and deals with a lot of themes that aren’t regularly explored in this medium. Perhaps this is to be expected from any anime that comes along with Keichii Sigsawa, original creator of the successful and remarkable Kino’s Journey. Kino’s Journey really tackled a whole array of social and human themes with depth and subtlety that I have
not found in any other anime series I’ve ever seen, and while this show retains some charms of the author, particularly how his love for travel and adventure once again shine through, it really is vastly different. Gone is the grit, angst and metaphoric render of Kino’s Journey, and in its place Allison and Lillia pulsates with light-hearted energy and tries diligently to capture the pure spirit of adventure. I struggle to think of something that works as comparison, which is funny because one of the first things that sprung to mind to describe this show was “a traditional adventure”.
Perhaps it is reminiscent of forgotten childhood books and stories, and just maybe this is how its charm really resonates. The soaring elation of flying in a plane for the first time, the anticipation and trepidation before setting off on a journey to somewhere unknown, the thrill of getting swept up in a dangerous train caper – Allison to Lillia at its core is about that, and about tapping into a nostalgic, childish form of escapism. Speaking of planes and trains, they are featured heavily in this series, and help to form the setting which is one of the ways in which it gains an atypical feel to it. The war-era West is the perfect choice of fictionalised setting as a time when technology and machinery still had a degree of magic to it. Allison to Lillia really capitalizes on this feeling of wonder, taking us for flights with a sense of gusto and amazement that must have existed before planes became a banal form of commute.
The setting may be a refreshing change from the generic Japanese High School but the characters that populate it are still distinctly Japanese in their behavior and culture. The result is like an antique Western adventure characterised by a familiar anime tone. The romantic aspect of the series plays out largely very predictably and bashfully, and the female characters are spiced up with some bouncy moe features to their personalities. Much of the show revolves around the relationship between the core duo getting caught up in these antics. In the first half, the duo comprises of Wilhelm and Allison, and in the second Treize and Lillia pair up to assail the world. In both cases, one of the characters is trying to confess to the other (and propose marriage no less) for much of their half of the show. Cue the botched/interrupted confessions and romantic obliviousness of the resilience seen only in anime! It is in this that she show loses a lot of points, with characters who are supposed to be so adventurous being so gratingly nervous with each other, and with the female characters being made so cute that it sometimes seems a bit jarring. Jabs at their believability aside, the main characters are really very likeable, and, especially in the case of Lillia and Treize, their interplay with each other is a lot of fun and gives the series a lot of its personality. Even if I may cringe when Treize is unable to confess, they are good enough characters that I genuinely did want to see things turn out happily for them in the end (which isn’t to say that it doesn’t – no spoilers from me!).
Believability is misplaced a bit in other areas of the show too. The creators may have spent so much effort nailing the essence of adventure that they completely neglected the details of said escapades. In a lot of cases, the villain presence feels contrived and there are quite a few relatively glaring leaps of logic in the plot that are ignored in favour of in-the-moment suspense. If you’ve seen the show I’m sure you’ll be able to think back to some times where you disconnected from the flow of the show and had to think “why are the villains going to all the trouble of doing this when they could have just..?” or “how is killing a seaplane load of orphans an optimal way to draw attention to a nation’s poverty crisis, at all?”. Often it gets ahead of itself, which unfortunately erodes the credibility of some of its stories. This may be the fault of the original creator; while Kino’s Journey was quite abstract and could afford the absence of realism, Allison and Lillia tries for conventional storytelling that relies in suspension of disbelief.
Mediocrity seeps into it from one other angle and that is the visual production. The score may have not been great music in its own right, but it got the job done in providing an extra edge of tension or drama where needed. The animation and direction, however might have been just a tad bland for this kind of show. Some scenes looked really great – some of the dog fights were done very well for a tv anime. But the background art was too simple and the episode direction was boringly conventional. I’m not asking for trippy 3D camera pans or anything like that, but the direction did nothing to add atmosphere to the series. It was generally just close up, followed by another close-up etc – the minimum thought needed in getting the animation into a frame. The director is not an unknown, Nishida Masayoshi worked on Mokke recently and I recall that suffering the same blandness. On the other hand, the character designs were very different and, especially for the female characters, very nice indeed. With their rounded, feminine features both Allison and Lillia often looked very beautiful (as opposed to just cute).
There is a message and a moral to each of its arcs, but it does not burrow too deeply with themes into the darker side of humanity. Rather, Allison to Lillia is washed over with a thick coat of optimism that is essential to this fun-spirited nature. To those of you who retain the childish yearning for adventure and exploration, Allison to Lillia should prove to be very enjoyable, providing just the right mix of tension, charm and romance. If you can latch onto this brand then it’s got to be a healthy change from or alternative to the kind of escapism fueled by the moe genre. It’s not particularly complex, involved or intelligent (quite unlike Kino’s Journey) but I’m sure it never tried to be and it works quite well as simple, wholesome entertainment, if you can overlook some logic gaps.
“It’s a small world” well this one certainly is. Allison & Lillia is an Action, Adventure series set in a world where a war is going on. This anime did have a lot of potential to be a great series but it was let down by its own carefree nature.
The tale of Allison & Lillia is interesting because it is split into 2 separate stories. The first major focus of the story is on the titular character Allison and her childhood friend Wil. Their adventure soon begins when they journey to discover something that could end the war between nations. Even though the meaning behind
this WWII-like war was incredibly stupid, at least it gave meaning to the pair’s journey. The only real downside is that it’s resolved surprisingly quickly, which will leave anyone feeling quite unsatisfied. However that’s not the end of this arc-driven story, since it follows a basic structure: establish arc, develop it, climax, rinse then repeat. The second part of the series does the same but focuses on the other titular character Lillia.
The characters involved during these adventures are okay at best but it becomes tiring when so many characters appear to be inter-connected in someway. For the most part they are fairly well-developed, yet from the 2 boisterous female leads to the dull male leads; the cast as a whole leaves very little impression on the viewer. Although what does leave an impression are the farfetched decisions the characters generally make.
At least there’s one positive thing that leaves an impressions and that’s the production value. Sure the animation has its good and bad points, yet the lush environments and character designs (that are quite bland) match the whole WWII theme. Yet CGI similar to the likes of “Last Exile” is to be expected. Well even though this series may not fair so well for some in the animation department, it ends up doing a great job in the sound department by having an amazing soundtrack. The music in the series is up to par with the whole WWII theme and the SFX is certainly impressive.
Overall Allison & Lillia felt like a pretty camp, adventure series with quite a few journeys and quest that are resolved so easily that it proves to be a big disappointment. Sure there are plenty of things to enjoy in this series, like the way the main characters interact with one another and the element of combat, nevertheless with this being such a kid friendly show anything from the combat to the romance will bore anyone who’s used to something… a bit more… intense.
*Review completely rewritten at series' completion (10/4/2008)*
'Allison & Lillia', based off the light novel series 'Allison' and 'Lillia & Treize', introduce a new characteristic in it's plot, presenting four main characters on consecutive generations within a same family, cleanly separated by a time skip exactly at the mid of it's duration (halfway through the 13th episode of the 26).
Other than the time skip, the story is divided into various isolated small arcs with almost no relation to each other, the only persisting part of the plot is the developing love relationship between the main characters, developing which mostly consists of said characters gathering the necessary
strength to confess their love and finally fulfill their romance.
The art beautifully portrays the technological setting of the show(around 1930, in-between world wars). The european architecture and flora, the clothing used by the characters, along with the suave painting style and colors used, contribute to successfully give the viewer the cold and warm sensations of the environment the characters are in. The animations however have some flaws, and the the actions of characters in crucial moments are very badly planned, and many inconsistencies can be observed without difficulty.
The theme songs fit the mood of the rest of the show perfectly, with a calming and flowing opening filled with wind instruments, that is coupled with shots of the characters in cold or aerial environments mostly blue in color, and a heartwarming ending with a "memory" motif, with string instruments played over reddish or sepia backgrounds. The background music is specially good during action shots, adding to the feeling of adventure of the scene, and is also very good at the more calm moments of the show.
The main characters are the focus of the entire show, since they are the only permanent part of it. Their personalities, however, change very little throughout the episodes themselves, with a big change to the characters of the first half during the time skip. Their actions are motivated mostly by their strong sense of justice and selflessness, specially on the male cast, in a very cliched romantic-hero fashion, which leads them to be somewhat shallow and predictable. As such, some of the supporting cast's and villains' backgrond story and motivations are more interesting than those of the main characters.
In the end, this was a refreshing series, one that I would personally recommend to anyone searching for a calm and social story. I still stand against attempts of marathoning through it all at once though, since most people would be finding their appreciation of the anime hindered by slow pacing and uneventfulless of single episodes.
I had moderate hopes for Allison and Lillia. After all, the novel was written by the same author who wrrote Kino's Journey. Now, I'm not calling Kino's Journey something wonderful. A collection of dark comedies, no matter how good they are, rarely bring anything new to adult audiences. However, most tales in Kino's Jouney are at least thought-provoking to some degrees, and the show has a good and unique atmosphere. Therefore, I thought Allison and Lillia might be another nice little journey for me. Unfortunately it's not the case.
The low production value is the first turn-off for most audiences. The characters all lack moe qualities.
The animation is terrible too. What's more disappointing is the fact that throughout the 8 episodes I watched, I haven't even seen one face that is not distorted. I always thought Madhouse was a decent studio, but I don't know what they were thinking when they made this show.
Low production value sometimes can still be saved by good scriptwriting and characterization. Sadly Allison and Lillia has neither. I'm sure that a junior high student can write better scripts than this. Allison tells mini-stories on a 4-episode basis. The first story is about Allison and Will looking for a treasure that can end the war. The story is a little bit interesting at first, but then it gets boring soon after the first episode. Their encounter with that old woman and the death of the old man at the army base brings nothing to the story. The final relevation is also very disappointing. TBH I was expecting much more than a drawing. The second mini-story is even worse. Helping a princess getting her revenge, I mean come on...Sadly the boring plot is not the major problem with the scriptwriting. How the writer resolves crisis is beyond my comprehension: using a watch to block a knife, falling off a tower because a plane flew nearby, and being able to draw a gun and shoot someone when that someone already holds a gun. Allison is filled with this kind of unrealistic details. The characterization is no better either. None of the characters annoy me, but they lack complex emotions and subtle changes that are essential to good characterization. How they acknowledge what goes on around them is also missing. I don't know how good the Lillia part is going to be, but I won't be able to find out since I'm dropping the show.
The world is a confusing place. We have a whole variety of different opinions about how the world should be run and why, along with how people should act in certain situations. With the billions of people scattered across the Earth, to say that a majority of people believe in a single set of societal rules would certainly be a strong accusation. When all of this is taken into consideration, I could imagine how difficult it would be to draw out a realistic, yet imaginary world where nothing about our countries or cultural agendas exist. This is something Allison to Lillia sets out to disprove;
that a realistic, yet imaginary world can be both conceivable and simplistic all at once.
The story begins in a world that isn't our own. While it resembles a post World War view of Europe and harbors technology within that timeframe, it assures you that it isn't what you believe it to be. The viewer is quickly introduced to a young man by the name of Wil, who, at first glance, seems like a studious and cautious boy destined for a hard-working life as a school teacher. His character is basically the equivalent of any typical male hero on his own. However, just as quickly, we are introduced to the second protagonist of this series: Wil's childhood friend, Allison. Allison is an aspiring pilot who's gutsy personality and adventurous spirit makes her a perfect mis-match for Wil, and makes for an entertaining variety of banter between them. The chemistry between these friends is spontaneous, while also cliche. While it's been done in the past, the gradually progressing romance between the two feels more realistic the more the viewer gets to know about their past together and the hardships they have to face while trying not to get under each other's skin. Wil and Allison's relationship from the very start is coated in a distinct aura of innocence and care. The relationship between these characters work for this reason and this reason alone.
The plot centers around two countries that are currently at war with each other over ownership of the land they both currently reside over. Again, certainly doesn't sound like Europe, does it? While this makes for an interesting premise, one of the many things that this anime likes to do is think of a topic, then resolve it within three to six episodes. What you read in the synopsis only covers the first four episodes of this series, while the rest of the series becomes more focused on little sub-plots that arise after the main plot is resolved. This makes the title feel more episodic in general, which may kill any hope to those looking for a long adventure with a sort of epic atmosphere. Along with these sub-plots comes more opportunities for the title to make itself as realistic as possible. It takes those opportunities and destroys them. Many times throughout this anime I found myself questioning the decisions certain characters make or why something was resolved in the fashion that it was. There are plenty of inconsistencies that reside inside the plot of this anime that only hurts the credibility of the world within it.
The overall design of this new world is colorful and shiny, like Van Gogh painting with diamonds, but without the Impressionist designs and tarnished easel. It only adds to the feel of innocence that surrounds the characters and their equipment as they take on the imaginary world. While it invokes nostalgic emotions, the movement of the characters are a bit slow-paced, especially during action scenes. The character designs are memorable, but only for those they decided to focus on. Wil and Allison are visibly brighter than any other character in this series, which gives the impression that they are more important than anyone else in the series. While that may ring true, it could always rub supporters of the side characters the wrong way.
The only reason this title gets by with all of these issues is because of the overall likability of the characters. While Allison and Wil together are already enough to satisfy the void of necessary characters, there are others that come along and hold a firm position in the title's roster along with them. It holds a certain charm that seduced my inner desire for adventure and pre-adolescent fantasies of a dangerous journey across the land with only my closest friend by my side. The imagination put into this is enough to intrigue those with any taste in entertainment.
Suddenly, Allison to Lillia travels fifteen to sixteen years into the future.
The focus of the series now lies on Allison and Wil's daughter, Lillia. While at first she seems to exude more personality from her Mother, as the series progresses, she quickly adapts into her own blend of her parent's worst qualities. This is simply an ironic statement. The truth is, she steals every bit of likability out of her parents and over the course of the series, decides never to show it. This is not an ironic statement. Within the first few episodes of her introduction, Lillia is shown to have the adventurous spirit her Mother possesses, while showing the same hesitance that her Father had at the face of adversity. This is quickly abandoned soon after in order to convert her into a typical damsel in distress. Who is she distressing to? A new character named Treize, who's personality is a blend between unspoiled royalty and spoiled milk. Along with a few other new faces, the anime gives the reigns to Lillia and Treize, two childhood friends who go on spontaneous adventures together while developing a stronger friendship in the process. Sound familiar?
The second part of the series is when the creativity begins to take a turn for the worst. While the idea of the two original main characters having a daughter is refreshing, it ultimately backfires when you take away her personality and put her in the exact same situation as her parents, except without any overwhelming obstacles in their way. To put it simply, Allison to Lillia is a 26 episode anime that resets itself after episode thirteen, with the addition of new characters and the main conflict missing. Along with this repetition, comes more inconsistencies and plot holes. Don't worry, they reset that, too. But fret not, along with these inconsistencies comes drama through cliffhangers and deus ex machinas, something the first thirteen episodes used minimally, and seemed to forget later on that less is more.
With the addition of new faces with recycled personalities, plots that don't amount to much and suspense based on extreme exclamations, Allison to Lillia downgrades into an imaginative world of exploration into the standard cliches of mindless action/suspense. It begins with the promise of a grand journey and concludes with a train falling off of a cliff. This may be symbolic. All that's left to say is that this was a very enjoyable one-cour series.
Given that the novels were written by the same author as Kino no Tabi, I half expected a series that was far more in-depth but Allison and Lilia has proven to be a surprise (no unpleasantly) for me to watch and quite enjoyable for those of you who would like to watch a series that stirs up some feelings of nostalgia and throwback adventures of a simpler time.
First off to note is the story and overall feel of the series really goes for the old-school, youthful, grand adventure type of plot that I came to expect from summary. Far from the more thought-provoking journey
from Kino no Tabi, Allison and Lilia keeps the formula of mystery, adventure, and romance simplistic and relatively pure. While this works both for and against it at various times the largest issue with plot is consistency, with the plot often shifting from very strong to poorly executed. This is probably most noticeable in the Lilia portion of the anime where for many viewers the plot may take a significant drop in quality. This bound with the relative "convenience" of some of the mysteries can make the series feel to simplistic at times.
The simple nature of the plot is actually very well complemented by the musical soundtrack which does well to give viewers a feel for the environment and overall pretense of the stories that are occurring. While calling the soundtrack remarkable would be a push for many, it most definitely helped draw viewers to buy into the world of Allison and Lilia.
The core characters for the most part are all very well defined in the series. Though character development is not the strongest point of the series, each of the main protagonists are presented in a manner that is relatively well understood and likable. Among these, Allison shines in her role as the series namesake (and far more so than Lilia on many occasions) and most definitely helps spur viewers sense of adventure as the plot moves onward.
The artistic design and voice acting of the series are all beautifully done keeping in line with the simple and throwback nature of the plot. It strays away from extraordinarily detailed character design but keeps it relatively clean, with particular focus on some of the environment and background scenes. While by no means a masterpiece in its genre, the art and animation does its job well and lends itself in a supportive nature to the pretense of the series.
Overall, Allison and Lilia does have a few bumps on the road to calling it an extraordinary series. Its simple but pure plot may or may not encourage those who are interested in watching this series. However it is undeniable that it does suffer its share of frustrating holes and disappointments. While it is not entirely character driven in terms of development, all the main characters are well defined and wonderful to watch while helping viewers buy into being part of the adventure. For those wishing to watch a series from a simpler time and place, Allison and Lilia will fill that void in your list nicely.
Sometimes, in watching something excellent, you can see the way a whole studio has come together in realising a shared creative vision. Other times, what you see is something like Allison and Lillia, where you can see where various components of the production want to go off in different directions and it seems like only the director is the one making them all stay mostly within the same series, with the upshot that the series has very little idea what it actually is.
For starters, there's a remarkably gentle surface philosophy behind the story. Enough information already exists about the setting and so on,
so I'll skip that and simply say that Allison and Lillia is fairly unusual in that it is a series in which all military personnel are politically aware citzens, truly there to protect something and solemnly do their patriotic duty, instead of being the people who enjoy the chance to blow shit up when the man in the suit says so; even the enemy in their various forms are ideologically sound, but simply misguided, for the most part, and all our protagonists are avowed pacifists.
However, the design department is resolute about using European technology from the first half of last century, including detailed and exacting depictions of various deadly firearms, aircraft and other military machines. More importantly, the word of the author dictates strict realism is the flavour of the month. What is the practical upshot? Despite marksmanship being a trait of both male protagonists and guns being waved about a lot, the baddies cannot shoot more than very occasionally, and when they do, either they miss unbelievably, or their bullet is deflected; the goodies cannot shoot any more often, and when they do, they are not aiming for the person but for their gun, which they invariably hit, even though they are firing at a moving jeep while jumping, or whatever. Worst of all, however, is the obvious thinness of the sugar-coating that is put on everything; life seems simultaneously precious and cheap, with all onscreen violence resulting in a very carefully specified lack of fatalities, and yet there are several references to extrajudicial execution, but it happens off-screen so it must be OK.
On the grounds that it's usually abused as a deus ex machina rather than explored as a system, I hate magic as a rule. Something like this, that recycles early 20th century Europe as a kind of fantasy setting but without magic I can really appreciate on a certain level. Again, this kind of backdrop is a great start - obviously it makes for lots of evocative and exotic (to the Japanese point of view) visuals, and a setting that makes deus ex machina hard to include would, you might reasonably expect, force the writer to avoid them. However, that implies that the writer is capable of avoiding them, which in this case they clearly aren't, as they simply rely on implausible luck, unexplained omission and completely incomprehensible concepts to provide them instead. There are interesting premises throughout the series, wasted time and again by silly errors and poor choices.
One such is the music. While the opening theme is a very nice piece, peaceful, minimal and rather beautiful, the background music manages to become very repetitive and tiresome in a short period of time, and more importantly, just doesn't fit. The setting would logically suggest some sort of blend of classical, jazz and swing, but, being synthesiser-heavy in exciting periods, overly simplistic in more sedate moments and insipidly unevocative throughout, the score just seems like it belongs in another show entirely. The end credits also sport an entirely inappropriate song, the singer of which is so obviously a modern star that it totally breaks the mood of the show.
The well researched and reproduced visuals and reasonably complex and fairly well-formed characters go a good way to creating a fairly credible setting. Voice work is generally of a high standard as well. However the protagonists, while interesting and somewhat multifaceted, are very familiar character archetypes, and worse, they don't ever develop. Essentially, the characters have some adventures, then after four episodes things are sorted out and they go home ready for the next four, without any of what they do actually visibly touching or affecting them.
There is an eighteen year gap between Allison and Will's half and Lillia and Trieze's, and the older Allison and Will are similar to but not identical to their younger counterparts - so the character development basically occurs offscreen. Smooth move there, Madhouse. The only real exception to this - which is a spoiler, so skip the whole next paragraph or be spoiled - Is Will at the end of the first half.
By this point I was sick of him being stereotypically, irrationally reticent and
inconsistent that I was already beginning to dislike him somewhat. Then, he is approached by Allison's newly-revealed dad, who is in military intelligence, and is offered the chance of giving up the woman he loves and the society of his birth to become a spy in the other main country, with no ties to his former life and on the very flimsy pretext of 'protecting Allison', even though his romantic relationship has only just begun, she is at least as capable of protecting herself as he is and probably more so, and it is now peacetime. Alternatively, he could lead a successful career as an academic
and teacher, true to his generally pacifistic outlook on life, and commit to protecting Allison directly day-to-day. OK, I thought, here's your chance to redeem yourself and put this ethically bankrupt suspicion-peddler in his rightful place by refusing his ridiculous job offer. Instead, totally at right-angles to what is sensible and consistent, and without any real explanation of his reasoning, he accepts. That, I have to say, is exactly how not to do character development. Will has spontaneously developed into a grade-A moron.
The lack of anything more unpleasant than what cinemas in the UK hilariously tend to call 'mild peril' tends to create the impression that this is aimed at a young audience. However, when you get issues like the above coming up, the sort of thing that I doubt kids who require bloodless entertainment would actually be able to comprehend, it does make the whole aim and tone of the series seem terminally misaimed. You have to conclude that there's a conscious effort being made to pitch this as a show for adults to watch and hark back to entertainment they enjoyed as children, and I'm certainly not the only one who picks up on this old-fashioned vibe. It's just a shame that the plot and writing and the issues it raises are not dealt with as befits drama for adults.
Indeed the issues that arise from the series - things like the futility of revenge and responsibility to parents, to children and to spouses, not to mention the distasteful nationalism that isn't explored, simply assumed - are remarkably complex. That the story tries to deal with them in such simplistic ways and makes the sort of mess of it that it does is a real shame. Lousy characterisation aside, the generally bright, idealised and sanitary world of the story also is very much at odds with the underlying tone, creating yet another disconnection.
I'm also slightly perturbed by the underlying agenda. Obviously, Will's choice is intended to be seen as the morally right one; taken along with the strong military presence, the power and influence the military wield in the story's world, the highly active role of secret paramilitary-police forces in enforcing national security, and the relentlessly positive treatment of absolute monarchy, this comes across as a very old-fashioned, rightist view of the world. Then there are the various terrorists that take the roles of antagonists at various stages, all of whom are portrayed, morally speaking, as unambiguously wrong for whatever reason, while our state military-allied protagonists are always right. This, to me, somewhat resembles the worldview of the Japanese state in the '20s and '30s, with its reverence for the Emperor, strong and powerful military, highly flexible attitude to the sanctity of human life and very active internal secret police, not to mention the idea that performing one's national duty through military service is a family obligation as well as a national service. But the thing that gets me more than all of that is the lack of any sense of negative consequences - everything seems to be perfectly OK as a default state, and whatever happens to spoil that is only ever seen as a temporary hitch, something to be dealt with and disposed of so that the pastoral status quo can resume. Nobody ever asks questions about whether there was a reason for what happened, or wonders if this is a mistake they should learn from.
This sort of attitude is very far from progressive, and the agenda highly suspect, and given Japan's rather unusual and stubborn national refusal to officially face up to significant parts of its wartime past, I worry about passing this sort of ethos on to the kids of Japan, who really should be allowed the latitude to form their own ideas, not be having highly biased and idealised attitudes like this shovelled at them in the guise of an innocent fantasy.
Maybe this is all too much analysis and I'm reading too much into it; I can only relate what was going on in my head while I was watching this. On a basic level, this is an adventure story that doesn't quite manage to be satisfying or consistent in any sense. The premise, art and characters belong in a teen fantasy, the music is from something far more modern and pedestrian, the mechanical design and several plot elements have escaped from a war story, and the underlying mindset is frankly a throwback to the good old bad old days. While lacking in several ways, it is pretty, it is engaging, it is curiously compelling, it is superficially quite gentle, and overall it is enjoyable - but on closer analysis, you may not necessarily find yourself very happy with the underlying ethical standpoint. Whether you apply that sort of analysis, and whether you're willing to explain it to your kids when they start asking what's going on, is of course a judgement only you can make.
WARNING: Contains spoilers. Of course, unless you are bored, there are better things to watch so you might not care.
My opinion? Average, that's all. Would be more, if only it wasn't overshadowed by what it could have been.
This anime had a lot of potential in the beginning, but it was really ruined by several things. One, the characters--despite their unique personalities and quite good voice acting--remained at a distance as they refused to express any adult emotions. Characters who were supposedly in love never kissed or hugged, characters who were married acted the same as when they were children and just good friends, etc. The
only two characters who weren't like this were the Hero and the Queen. Furthermore, there was a huge lack of realism and engagement due to the truly stupid use of violence. Characters put tons of other people in danger in refusing to kill, despite the implications that they have no qualms killing, guns were set pieces that people waved around more than anything, and dire scenes were full of inept bumbling and lacked tension completely. The latter half of the series was particularly prone to this. Also, as the series went on, the crazy situation made less and less sense. The final arc presented a complex mystery settup that made no logical sense. Why would you go through all that trouble to assasinate someone instead of just shooting them in the face? Also, (SPOILER) the prince was apparently dead and then--with no explanation as to his miraculous survival from certain death--he reappears.
There were some good parts. The first parts of the series were somewhat enjoyable, before the adventuresome spirit was tarnished by the lack of realism and authentic romance. The animation was fairly good, even if the battle choreography was stiff and unrealistic. The story world had great breadth and sufficient depth so as to seem complex, and the characters had a great deal of potential for development. If this series were remade under different direction, and several key story point were rewritten to include real violence, actual tension, realistic romance, and remove the gaping holes in the story logic, this would be a masterpiece, easily. But, due to mishandling of an epic nature, the show completely failed to live up to what it could have been.
Allison & Lillia is an anime that is different from most. It has a sense of mystery and adventure with it. Some storylines you can actually try to figure out the mystery with them. It has a lot to do with the military and I am 100% against wars and armies but I absolutely love this anime.
The story is seperated into mostly 4 episode storlyines, each taking place in a different season. The first 13 episodes is about Allison and Wil, and the second 13 episodes is about Lillia (Allison's daughter) and Treize. I personally liked Allison's Arc better, but Lillia's Arc comes in
a very close second place. They are both very interesting to watch. Lillia's Arc is a tad repetitive but it still has it's own little quality.
The art is really beautiful. Very different from most anime styles. The cahracters appear as if they look like they are made of rubber. But you get used to it really quickly. Lots of detail were put into this anime, especially in the planes and trains. The animation was also very flawless and it did look like it was done very professionally.
The opening theme "Tameiki no Hashi" is very unusual. Unusual in a good way though. Your first time hearing it you might be thinking "o.o" but after you hear it the next time you really here it's true beauty. The ending theme "Sayonara no Omajinai" also has that same quality. The score for this anime also is very beautiful. They place each piece of music perfectly with each scene. The voices for this show also are very professionally picked. They fit perfectly with each character and really bring them to life.
Each character has it's own defined personality (each main character that is). They each have their own special look and feel to them and their voice actors really bring them to life.
After each episode I couldn't wait to watch the next one! I was so into it! Each episode left you dying for more and you couldn't wait to find out what happened next! I loved loved LOVED it!
If you like any type of anime, I highly suggest this. There is violence, mystery, drama, chases, action, adventure, and girls with somewhat large eyes (somewhat is the keyword there). If you want ecchi or hentai though, don't stop here (well you should anyway XD).
It's a very exciting adventure anime. The novel were written by Sigsawa Keiichi, the author of the Kino no tabi. It is set in an alternative world with a technique 1900's years. One little story at about 3-4 episode.
- good story
- loveable characters
- real romance between the characters
- beautiful landscapes
- exciting action scenes
- a little rough-and-ready ending
- some unspoken fact
The anime is separated two part. There are 15 years between the parts.
The stories plays in the school holidays(spring,summer,autumn,winter).
Allison and Lillia is a children's show. At least, I assume it's a children's show, as few adults would stand for such massive plot holes, idiotic character motives, and unbelievable action sequences. Not that children's shows should be allowed to have such low standards, but adults often assume children are too stupid to notice the difference.
The story is broken up into several arcs of about 4 or 5 episodes each. The arcs usually occur some several months apart, although midway through there is a gap of about 16 years, and the main characters switch from Allison and Will to Lillia and Treize. The stories of
each arc may reference and have roots in previous events, but mostly they stand alone, so this series is somewhat like a collection of short stories centered around a common group of characters.
The stories range from adventures searching for a lost treasure that can stop a war between two nations, to uncovering and foiling various dastardly schemes by a parade of generic villains who often have baffling motives. The sense of danger present in the adventures decreases as it becomes increasingly obvious that no one is really willing to kill any of the important characters despite plentiful and convenient opportunities to do so. There is also always some faint romantic intrigue, usually one main character yearning for their painfully oblivious partner. While the awkward moments do make for some amusing scenes, the frustration negates many of the benefits of their inclusion.
The characters in the series are surprisingly flat, and many times incredibly carefree. Royalty and secret government agents too often rely on their emotions and whims. Fortunately for them, and the world at large, so do the corrupt politicians and businessmen. The main characters fair little better. Allison, the show's first protagonist, is a decently strong, if flighty, independent female, and a military pilot, but she is constantly pining for her childhood friend Will, who is comically obtuse to her feelings. It is primarily their interaction that carry the first half of the show, until Will changes drastically in the third arc due to a ridiculous plot twist.
The second half of the series switches focus to Allison's daughter Lillia and her friend Treize, who has a secret that EVERYONE else knows. Treize is also keen to a secret about Lillia that, again, she is the only one oblivious too (with a later character even reaching the conclusion within moments of meeting her). Personality wise, Lillia and Treize are very much echoes of Allison and Will, with the girl being the energetic and free-spirited one, and the boy being practical and subdued, but this time it is the boy with the one-sided crush. Unfortunately for Lillia and Treize, they lack the chemistry of their predecessors, and the pre-existing characters generally outshine them.
If you care at all about a sensible plot, though, this will all be overshadowed by a complete disregard for logic and Occam's razor. The surprises the show springs (the one's it doesn't constantly hint at, anyway) are completely unpredictable because no one in their right mind would make such decisions. In the last arc, multiple elaborate stages are used to kidnap the least likely person to ransom them for another who could have been taken several times early with less effort.
The artwork often captures the essence of the surroundings, and locales give a sense that they are genuine. Character designs are fine, and aircraft deserve special mention, considering how important they tend to be. Trains, however, tend to be unrealistically roomy (although that's a minor issue). Action scenes are passable, but do little to convey the excitement one would hope for.
The opening and closing numbers are mellifluous pieces, soft and soothing, which often puts them at odds with the events occurring in the story, but they remain enjoyable. The background music for the series on the other hand, is often overbearing, often beating the listener over the head with the sense that a given scene is supposed to be tense, suspenseful, or dire.
There are better shows out there. Try Kino's Journey if you want the sense of adventure, or maybe Last Exile for young people caught up in trying to end a war. Allison and Lillia, give it a miss.
This show is very very enjoyable to watch, especially if you are really bored at home, with nothing to do.
The first 13 episodes encompasses the story of Allison and her childhood friend Wil, and the second 13 episodes encompasses the story of Allison's daughter Lillia dn Trieze. This creates a pretty unique story, as the characters in the first reappear in the second. The story, however, is not really focused so much on the plot, as it is for the interactions between each character. The holes in the story also lowers its value.
The art isn't the "wow" kind, but it is good
enough for the story.
I liked the lively sounds in the show, and it makes a person feel happy (like the OP). It also has great suspense music at the serious scenes, and is pretty well placed along with the actions. The voices of the characters also match their archtype.
In the entire story, the one thing I found most desirable is the portrayal of the characters. Each character's past isn't explained much as it is very short, but their personalities are well defined, and you could infer how they became like that. Also, the main characters are pretty likable and the enemies are shown in a believable way.
The plot itself was very thin, but the show itself is well done. The conversations between characters and their adventures makes a person feel good. It is a very enjoyable series (albeit people who don't like adventure stories).
It is definitely worth watching (its a full days worth of anime (26x20)+2hours for food and toilet) and it is a good watch for a break from the more serious side of anime.
When I first read the synopsis for this anime I thought " ooh looks like a fun treasure hunting adventure anime." But after watching it, I found out it was a pretty boring anime that was not worth my time.
Story: The story had a lot of potential, but nothing came to fruition. A big problem for me was that they actually find the "treasure" about 4 episodes into the anime. This made it feel like the show reached its climax and everything that followed were just filler stories to eat up time.
Art: The art was good. It was up to modern anime quality standards, but
provided nothing innovate or new (which explains why I gave it an 8).
Music: The music was not memorable or exciting. It was pretty boring and dull. If you are looking for fun fast paced music like some of the Naruto intro songs then you will be sadly disappointed.
Characters: Boring as hell. No personalities, and nothing special about them. Just boring generic characters. This means that there was no connection to the characters. You don't learn to love or care for them at all.
Overall: Don't waste your time. I would rather have sex with a donut then re-watch this anime.
This anime has an interesting synopsis at first and a pleasant development in its beginnings with the story of Allison and Will, has a good soundtrack and they make you want to know that it awaits them as the chapters progress, it seems to me the end of the story of Allison it's a bit abrupt as is its final saga but it was definitely the first half that made this anime interesting.
The second half is unfortunately an exact copy of Allison's story and while i liked the dynamic between Treize and Lillia unfortunately steer ousting themselves generating a first saga of fighter jets, a
second saga about royalty and a third saga on a train in distress and the father's secret again, making it repetitive and somewhat boring.
Finally its end was something quite disappointing and very surreal, this one more than say that the no explanation of how Treize is saved is very strange and after that appears suddenly in the school of Lillia was absurdly opportunistic the situation.
In conlcusion i think it is an enjoyable and interesting story until the end of Allison's youth because later it's exactly the same story but with different protagonists, a story that starts at the top but as the chapters and the sagas is declining.
Well, This show is quite something. To say the truth it definitely has or had potential to be really good, but even though it doesnt meet expectations it is entertaining.
Why? you might ask?
Well, what i meant by it having potential is that the story is pretty unique and involves a whole different world with different problems, yet has some things that we have on Earth, like guns and airplanes and they all look the same. Basically the story takes place in a small country that looks like it would be on Earth but isn't. That's, that for where it takes place and now for what
the story is about. Well, the story is about a country with 2 sides that have a conflict regarding their history which leads to a war. Now this war has been going on for a long time and has affected many people. And, Some people it happens to affect are the main characters. One day though they find hope on stopping the war completely and chase after it. And now after finding out a way to stop the war they chase after it fighting through people, learning lessons, and finding friends.
Sorry if I butchered any of the wording. I'm not the best writer. I just hope i got what i was trying to say across to you.
Ok, Now for what brought down the chances of success of this anime. Well, first ill talk about the art. The art definitely looks very good and vivid which makes all the more enjoyable to watch. But, although it looks good it lacks some things. One thing is the little details. I don't know if you knew but even the smallest of details in the art makes a big difference and in this anime it definitely lacks the little details. Second is the art lacks spice. And by spice i mean facial expressions. Where does this matter? well it matters in the characters. And while you watch you will notice how when you might think one of the characters should look embarrassed or angry or sad, they actually don't(or at least not enough). This is definitely a problem because how the characters express their feelings in the show, influences the viewers.
And those are basically the things that pulled down this anime in the ratings.
Now ill talk a little bit about the characters. Well, what I think is important in the characters of an anime is variety. And by that, I mean a variety of personalities. This show does have a variety but is nothing special. The characters are interesting and have interesting personalities that help make the viewers want to watch more and more(which every anime should have).
And i guess ill tell you about 2 of the main characters in the show.
Well, one of them is named Wil. When Wil was born he was taken care of by his birth parents, but when he turned three years old they put him on the door step of an orphanage. Wil is a smart boy and is at the top of his class. Wil's grades are also high enough for him to be aloud to not go to class. Lastly, Wil is a kind person that takes care of his friends and thinks of solutions for situations.
The other one is named Allison. Allison is a blonde young girl and also is Wil's childhood friend. Allison is a pilot in the air force for one of the sides in the war. Although she is a pilot she wishes for no violence and wants the war to end. When Allison was eight years old, her father passed away so she was taken to the orphanage where Wil met her. Allison always caused trouble and didn't listen to anyone, and so she always got in trouble and always managed to get Wil in trouble too. Although she is stubborn, she also has a strong heart and doesn't give up. She cares for Wil and her friends and together they try to stop the war. That, i hope, shows you that there is some variety in the characters and also tells you a little bit about them.
Ok. Well, im getting tired and I am going to wrap this up. This anime is very nice and is very entertaining. It is fun to watch and if you ignore the minor faults this anime has you will notice it is actually really good. I hope you will enjoy watching this amime(as am i).
Thanks for reading. Sorry if any is hard to understand. And, I hope this helped you!
After watching Allison to Lillia, I came to a conclusion that it is not fair to judge this as a single season anime since it follows 2 (almost) different stories and sets of characters.
I HIGHLY suggest that you check out the light novels "Allison" and "Lillia and Treize", as well as "Meg and Seron" and "The Story of One continent" which are also set in the same universe and are a nice piece of literature.
The first part (13 eps) follows the adventures of Wil and Allison. If this was a standalone anime season, I would give it a solid 9.
The art is great, with a
lot of details and a nice mix of different kinds of animation. The music is maybe my favourite part as a whole. The main theme Tameiki no Hashi is my favourite theme song that I've heard so far.
The story itself is set ~1928 and it flows very nicely, though a little bit slow at the start. If you're a fan of spies and aviation you're going to enjoy this one. There are a lot of twists which make the story, despite being slow very enjoyable and fun. The main characters are strong and there are plenty of story arcs which define them and their friends. Wil is a bit oblivious to love, but it's just enough that you can keep liking him.
The problems with the anime (imo) begin at the other half, which follows the adventures of Lillia and Treize. The story is set 15 years later, around 1945.
I wish I could say that I enjoy it, but the art immensely drops in quality; especially in the last few episodes. Love takes the spotlight in the other half with aviation and spy drama taking the backstage, being there only for convenience. The characters seem so... boring and cliche. Unlike Wil and Allison, Lillia and Treize don't have anything that shapes them. They both, to me, act horribly un-human like. It's like they don't even have half a plank in their head. They're completely oblivious both in love and their surroundings. The story feels random, with little character development between major arcs.
In the end, I would give the second part a 5 or even a 4.
That is why I give this one a 8 in the end, I should give it lower, but the first part is just good enough to pull an 8 from me.
Allison and Lillia starts with a girl and boy (Allison and Wil) which their country has been in an unstoppable war for a long time, they meet an old man who then tells them of a treasure which is very valuable, many people have tried to find this treasure but failed, hence they call the old man a liar. Wil and Allison set off on an epic journey in the skies. Join them!
Allison and Lillia is a great anime to watch, it is one of my favourites, It has a very nice story line, though the characters are kind of the same, some may say
it gets repetitive but I find everything about Allison and Lillia good, other than that there aren't any more episodes.
If you like action, adventure, a bit of comedy and nice characters, this is an anime I recommend watching.
Whenever your in need of something to life your spirits this is definitely the anime for you. Great Romance in it and it follows a very interesting storyline. I think it moves a little quickly in some places but when it's an important scene or sequence of events they are very well designed. From the character interaction to the art its very nicely done.