Heard the title mentioned in one of the clubs, liked what I saw on the cover, liked what I read in the description, checked it out. And what a wonderful thirty minutes it was; even the extremely slow streaming site could not ruin this for me.
First of all, the setting is extremely unique. I love the idea of a city where daylight doesn't exist; it adds a mysterious and somewhat gloomy feel to the overall atmosphere. Nearly everything is covered in darkness, and yet this little boy carries on with his job to deliver 'light' from one person's heart to another. The concept is
simple but beautiful. Those who know the feeling of receiving a letter from a special person while having an overall bad day will surely be able to relate to it.
Since this is only a special for the upcoming TV series, obviously it does not show the entire story and does not explore all the characters in detail. In this special we are given a short overview of the world and are introduced to some of the main characters. It also covers one of the story arcs, and I loved every second of it. It was beautiful, touching, bittersweet, and very deep. It has that subtle slice-of-life feel to it that makes it realistic despite the fictional setting, some of the characters' mysterious powers, and mechanical monsters that get in the way of Lag's deliveries.
Once again, since this is only a special, I will judge it accordingly and will not subtract from character development either. In thirty minutes, Letter Bee introduced quite a variety of interesting individuals. Except for Lag, none were explored in detail, but all were very memorable. It left me with a lot of questions and made me wonder about their pasts and relationships with each other: how they became acquainted, who founded the Bee Hive in the first place, who were the previous Letter Bees... I can say this much: the cast was intriguing enough to make me want to watch the upcoming full story and learn more about all of them, and that means that the special did its job.
Both art and animation were simply stunning. I loved absolutely everything about it. The character designs (especially the eyes), the Letter Bee's uniform design, the background shots. The color choice was fantastic; the melancholic atmosphere it created fit in perfectly with all other aspects. It was just beautiful, I don't know what else there is to say.
To complete the perfection of this special, the music was also wonderful. It was at times sad, at times uplifting, and it was ideal for the portrayed situations. I loved the contrast between the rather gloomy opening and a cheerful ending theme after Lag successfully completed his delivery and moved on with his companions.
Letter Bee is one of the Autumn anime of 2009 that I look forward to. Knowing that the anime is an adaptation of the manga makes me want to watch it even more. I want to pick up the manga but since idle time is a luxury nowadays, it was a given that I couldn't afford to read another new manga. I just have to settle with just the anime for now.
This review however is for the special episode before the full season is released.
As the tittle suggested, Letter Bee is about delivering letter/mail/package. Letter Bee is equivalent to your modern day postmen. Bee is
the company where Lag, the protagonist works at.
He is accompany by Niche and Steak. Anyway, many refers Niche as Lag's guardian Dingo, whatever that is.
Light and Blue Night Fantasy tells the tale of Lag delivering an important package to Elena, a former Letter Bee. They are to make a journey to Silencio. He is to bring a veteran as a guide for this delivery. That's where Darwin steps in. Lag doesn't know this but Darwin was once Elena's Dingo and the real package for Elena is Darwin himself. Ralgo keeps this a secret from Lag for he knows if Darwin finds out he'll abandon the trip.
Letter Bee is a hazardous occupation. You might get attacked by Gaichuu during delivery hence why Lag carries a gun. The gun is called Shindan and is used to fire Heart when Gaichuu attacked. Shindan's ammunition is something that is called Spirit Amber. Lag's spirit amber is his red stone eye.
What is a Gaichuu you asked? They are bugs but with size of a monsters ^^"
Btw, Dingo is just a name given to the guardian. They pretty much protects the Bee from any harm. Niche for example, can hardens her hair and used it as a weapon against Gaichuu. Steak is usable too for he found their opponent weak spot. So guardian Dingo are not really human. They come in many forms, shapes and sizes. The relationship between a Dingo and a Letter Bee runs deep. It is as if they are partner for life.
I have no complains when it comes to the characters. The voice of each character suits them perfectly, so are the character designs. I personally thinks that Lag's voice is super cute and makes him appears more adorable and wot not.
No complains on the animation either. It is very pretty and smooth. I can feel that the production house puts a lot of effort with this episode. I appreciate that and hope the quality will stay consistent through out the season.
If there's one thing I do not like about Letter Bee, it is the way the Gaichuu met their death. It just wasn't dramatic enough imo. Other than that, I'm sure the full season of Letter Bee is going to be an enjoyable ride.
This small OVA sees the Tegami Bachi manga adapted into animated form, and the results are excellent.
The backgrounds and artwork are gorgeous, and very faithful to the manga's original style. The characters, though less detailed, are just as well depicted and yet again faithful to the author of the manga.
The voice acting, music, CGI and other special affects also get high marks.
Being only one episode so far, the story isn't remarkable, but the concept is creative and there's lots of potential there. The plot for this particular story was pulled off well and the conclusion was superb.
Given the treatment of this OVA, it
shows that the Tegami Bachi manga could make a succesful anime. I look forward to it!
Not very many anime have made me cry, feeling sad, yet feel so overwhelmingly happy about the story. It reminds me of some of my favorite books, where one falls in love with the characters and can feel almost what they feel. While there is so much more I want to know, this gives a great set up for the full lenght Anime coming out.
The art work was crisp. The details were exceltent. I enjoyied the realism of the buildings, and the designs on some of the more ornate objects. Won't go into them as this might provide spoilers. The world is in
darkness, but it is placed into a blue hue, so that it is neither scary, nor is it hard to tell details on.
I have a bias here... I have always been a huge fan of the style of music presented in here, it is both haunting, yet somehow soothing at the same time, which fits this fully.
I personally think that we'll get more character development in the Anime, but we might not. We are only given a small glimpse of the characters, but as this is a special, that is to be expected, isn't it? The characters are still lovable and filled with personality. It is just not much there.
I was jerked to tears. I had thought, alright, this is going to be one of those happy go lucky Anime's at first, but then I came to the conclusion that it wasn't, and that it was a very thought provoking piece, which makes me wonder if the Anime coming out will be the same.
I was mondo impressed. For such a short peice, and such a well developed world, they got a lot into the special here. Also, it drew on the emotions in just the right way, allowing one to sypathize with the characters. It is also a rather mellow story, but beuitiful none the less! :)
I haven't read the manga so I saw the anime without knowing anything about it, and it turned out to be a really nice surprise.
The story is sad but beautiful and despite being a short anime, it doesn't feel rushed. The characters are very likeable and expressive.
But my praise has to go to the art and the music. It really lifts this beyond just an average/good anime. With backgrounds reminiscent of Van Gogh and the wonderful music, going from chants to classical, the whole thing has an XVIII/XIX century european feel to it.
a very good fantasy drama that made me wish there was more of it.
This is more like a pilot or one-shot episode (as it aired prior to the beginning of the first season), and was actually re-used or re-animated as episode 17 in the first season of the anime. The season one episode title was: "Tegami Bachi to Dingo" (テガミバチとディンゴ) . So if you've seen the first season already, you've pretty much seen this episode. I want to say that the only difference is that there are more flashbacks in this OVA to compensate it as a one-shot, and the art looks a little sketchier in spots.