Every year the flowers bloom. Mysterious Cherry Blossoms blooming all over a crescent shaped island. That island is the island of Hatsune...
The main character who goes to Kazami Academy, Asakura Junnichi, has the power to see the dreams of other people in his sleep. He was also taught magic by an old lady that allows him to create sweets.
One day, Junnichi seems to have seen someone's dream again while he was sleeping. Inside that dream, a girl who was a childhood friend of his appeared. But, he was woken up by his sister Asakura Nemu, forcing him to come back to his regular life. Nemu doesn't actually have any blood relation to Junnichi but their bond is deeper than other real brothers and sisters. So deep that it gives the illusion that they're lovers.
It was another peaceful normal day waking up early in the morning and going to Kazami Academy. Together with childhood friend Amakase Miharu, the academy idol Shirakawa Kotori, the two sisters Mizukoshi Moe and Mako who prefer eating nabe on the school roof for lunch. Going through their day as usual, their childhood friend, Yoshino Sakura, who they thought had moved to America suddenly appears. It was a surprise for Junnichi and Nemu. Sakura tells them, "I came to finish the promise we made during our childhood"...
Da Capo is not for everyone. Especially anti-bishoujo vigilantes who'd surely find plenty of flaws to reinforce their misconceptions of a very very misunderstood class of anime. However, for those who are willing to look beyond its sub-tag of 'harem' and "eroge (adult games) conversion", you might just find an anime gem that few in the genre can outsparkle.
Story - 8
Da Capo has a very interesting premise and is a surprisingly coherent story. It achieves this in 2 ways. First, by never forgetting the thrust of the series. It could be an episode featuring one of the numerous side characters or typical high school
hijinks yet it never fails to leverage on these situations to further develop the central plot or characters. Grafting the various characters' stories onto the overarching theme is the 2nd avenue by which the series remains relevant despite its seemingly meandering series composition. Although I have to say the the first 15 eps could have been a lot tighter which accounts for the mildly-diminished score of 8 for this segment. Nevertheless, the series more than makes up for it with tightly-knitted and well paced 2nd half (ep 16 onwards).
Art - 9
For a 2003 production, the animation quality was nothing to write home about. The definition of art here extends beyond mere portrayal of visuals that the eyes can capture but sight that can touch the human heart. Da Capo clinches a 9 for this category because of its excellent art direction (which frankly is probably lost on most anime viewers.) Artistic scene transitions, panning shots that accentuate the mood of the scene etc are just some of the reasons why I believe Da Capo to have one of the finest cinematography in the genre.
Sound - 9
Da Capo soundtrack is undoubtedly the best of the genre. Not only are the pieces beautiful standalone musical compositions, their effect is greatly magnified in the various poignant scenes when employed skillfully under the anointed direction of the Da Capo crew, making its musical component one of the most memorable aspect of the production.
Character - 8
Da Capo has an endearing cast which sadly was not fully developed, at least for many of the fabulous side-haremettes. Again the series more than makes up for it with its wonderfully fleshed out leads. By digging deep into their psyche, motivations and struggles, one cannot help but empathize strongly with these girls binded by chains of cruel love. Few harem series does 'love' and even fewer do it with the depth and maturity of Da Capo
Enjoyment - 10
Well-crafted characters, poignant drama, impeccable music and an artistic flair to meld all these ingredients into a solid production is the reason why I enjoyed the series to. the. fullest.
Give DC a shot if you are not adverse to the much maligned bishoujo genre. Recommended only if you have an open mind, loves good drama, coherent plots and consistent characters.
Okay, so it's one of the most popular harem titles in japan, probably only second to KEY's big hits. It's even tiring to try to track the amount of side stories and sequels and doujin productions for this huge title.
But surprisingly despite all the hype this series gains, it totally killed all my expectations.
Okay honestly it started pretty nice.. with all the moe charm points you would find in any harem title. But it isnt really cool when the introduction episodes are cut to half time and u're forced to watch gravure videos of some of the seiyuus. they could have put more
effort into developing the story.
So when the real story actually started honestly thought it would be great. but it disappointed me at every turn. most of the plot is too cliche, too flat, too boring. i couldnt help sighing and hoping it would end sooner in the last 4 episodes.
The only thing commendable is probably the art, which is obviously the inspiration of many of the moe animes out nowadays. this is one of the main reason i watched this anime. everywhere you go in akihabara, you see da capo's art. it's that impressive.
I understand that 'da capo' is a musical term, so i was expecting some beautiful music. instead, it's so poor that i had to skip the OP and ED and sigh at all the scenes that were supposed to be touching. it's disappointing that they didnt work more on the music. as for the seiyuus, the big names are all over the place, so there's really not much to complain about.
Wow we have so many moe characters. You have your imouto, loli, osananajimi, senpai, and even an esper! What should we do? Decorate them in your bedroom! Yes, that's very much all there is to the characters in Da Capo. well, some of them have interesting backgrounds and personalities.. but in the anime they're prematurely developed, and leave much to desire. the characters are like pictures of people without a background. beautifully drawn, but shallow and monotonous.
And the worst character i've seen in a very long time is the main male character. each of his scripts make me sigh and wish it would end right there and then. it's so painful to see that pitiful soul. oh god please strike him with a bolt of lightning.
I started watching this with a lot of expectation, but the result is overwhelming disappointment. I should have been able to finish this in one day, but i couldnt stand watching it straight.. the shortcomings are so terrible it's depressing.. im not depressed because of the melancholy in the story, but because of the bad story.. sighs..
A good example of animes which dont live up to their popularity and fame. If you're going to watch this, make sure you're ready for disappointment
Story: 5/10~5.5/10 Its a pretty decent story. Its your average romance comedy, with a sample of drama and magic. Even so, I didn't find anything that particularly there that interested me, except maybe the "Forbidden Sibling Love". There are also a few things that I found "cheesy" such as: "The Island where sakura trees never wilt", "A love struggle between girls" as well as classic harem scenarios. When it first began I kinda enjoyed it, but I started to lose interest the mid to mid-last episodes as they focused more on the relationship between the two of the leads and the main male lead,
and condensed individual character stories in to one or two episodes. But I guess its worth watching if you have never watched anime based off of visual novels and other this anime of this genre.
Art: 8/10~8.5/10 The art I must admit is good. The scenes are exceptionally drawn, especially many night scenes and a few morning scenes. The characters are also pretty well drawn for 4 years ago as well, not that art has drastically changed. But for anime based off of visual novels you should expect any less than great animation.
Sound: 7/10 Ok I am a bit biased on soundtracks and music, since I am a music fanatic. The OP and ED songs aren't that shabby. I also enjoyed a most of the insert songs as well. However the OP song grew tedious after a while (maybe the for first 12 episodes I listened and watch). But its a commendable soundtrack nonetheless.
Character: 6/10 You've got the standard package of characters for a usual harem. One main male lead To be honest I liked most of the characters in the series however, there are some I got a bit irritated with (Such as Nemu and Sakura, but I still love them alot nonetheless) after a bit. But the reason why I gave it a lower score was because the character development in the episodes seem kinda shallow and only concentrated on a few of the characters, rather than developing some of the other supposed leads in the series.
Enjoyment: 6.0/10~6.5/10 There were times that I enjoyed it, like in the beginning, and times I felt like dropping it around the middle and mid-end. I guess the last few episodes covering the stories of individual characters was enough to satisfy me to watch and moderately enjoy the end as complete the first season of the series.
Overall: 6/10~7/10 I guess the last episodes played a large factor in my final decision of the series. I was wavering in my final rate between 6~7. I didn't particularly enjoy this season as much as I would've liked as other visual novels, but I guess the presentation was fine enough for me to look into the next seasons.
To be perfectly honest, I don't see what's bad about Da Capo except for the storyline; the characters are well drawn, they have unique and amusing personalities but aren't made to be 'over the top'. Throughout the anime, we see six different girls' relationship with the male protagonist Jyuunichi Asakura improve and we see that they all have feelings for him. However, we only see two of the girls actually confront each other about their feelings for Jyuunichi (i think that this is great since the story would probably go on for too long if all of the girls began to fight each other), these
are Nemu and Sakura. The anime also shows us the past of Jyuunichi's life which strongly involved both Sakura and Nemu, nice touch in my opinion, perhaps a little bit too typical but still very nice.
The music in Da Capo is awesome. Since the title is a musical term, this is kind of a necessity (some of you may disagree).
The art is very nice, since the anime is set in an island where sakuras are forever blooming, lots of the scenes have elegant and pretty floating sakura petals. If you're anything like me, you'll love it. The only problem might be the two wierd cats Mr, ~I dont know if this counts as a spoiler so I won't write its name~, and Utamaru. You can argur that Utamaru has a uniquely charming appearance but I prefer the typical cute nekos.
This is where the anime starts going downhill. The storyline or lines are not the best (to put it politely). The main storyline is just like most of the other typical Harems where a boy is loved by a few girls but finally chooses one that he loves after going through a series of arcs with the others. The main problem is the 'side story', this is a part in the anime where it is completely cut off from the main story. It is a meaningless and stupidly melancholic five minutes (or sometimes more) of the female characters of the anime encounters. . .a human cat. . .nuff said...
Despite the side stories, I enjoyed this anime very much and it was very refreshing...since the last anime I saw was so horribly made that I didn't put it on my anime list.