AnoHana - Overall Series Impressions & Total Series Rating
This thread is to be used for discussing the entire episodes of AnoHana ... your thoughts about the show, overall impressions, expectations and hopes about the DVD only footage etc.
A few subjects you might want to ramble on about:
And so on.
The poll represents your total series rating. In other words, how you would rate all the episodes combined (1-10)? If you'd rather rate the whole series by technical/artistic merits, you can do so. An example:
Animation Quality: 1-10
Voice Actors: 1-10
Emotional Involvement: 1-10
Average = Total Series Rating
Or a combination of the two. Or your general gut feeling.
Feel free to discuss and more importantly, have fun :)
I almost passed this anime up, since I never heard of it til it aired a few episodes, and usually not into this kind of show. I also almost dropped it after seeing a possibly dead loli rubbing against the male lead in a strange way. But I'm glad I didn't. :heh:
Ano Hana (We still don't remember the name of that anime because it was too damned long) is a powerful anime that mixes emotion with the nostalgia of childhood memories. Throughout the anime, we follow a group of characters that was once very close, but a single incident caused them to break apart, and as unfortunately as it would seem, time doesn't heal every wound. These characters are stuck in the past, unable to move on, trying to compensate the emptiness in their lives in their own different way. The 11 episode journey of Ano Hana leads viewers down the path of memories, and eventually the road to recovery. This proved to be a fulfilling journey as we followed them through their joy and their (especially) tears
Ano Hana's visuals are nothing spectacular, but the colors are nice and vivid. It's umm... very bright. The character designs them, are per the anime trend, cutesey looking but not overboard. And everyone has different outfits. (Yukikatsu, yay!) So that's always a plus. Overall, it's pretty smooth, and there's little to complain here about-- It's nice to look at
Again, nothing that will knock you off your feet, but the 2 OP/ED songs are very nice. Aoi Shiori goes for the whole nostalgia feeling thing. I did prefer the ending song "Secret Base"; it's kinda sentimental and sappy, but fits the anime very well to a tee. I also loved how the episodes will lead into the ending song. I haven't seen them do it that well since Mai-HiME.
Despite the somewhat sappy moments and simplistic plot, I could just say that Ano Hana worked. It kept me watching, it left me wanting for more, and I really wanted the leads to succeed. I wanted the show to succeed. Ultimately, it made me give a damn about the show, and in a genre I don't appreciate too much, that's just great. Many times, I have to ask when I'm watching: "What's the point of this?" Well, Ano Hana always had its goals in mind, and thus I was enjoying practically every moment without complaints... til after I watched. :p
I've gained a lot of respect for Mari Okada for writing this wonderful work, and it definitely has a place in my mind for great anime. Now that's the kind of show I want to see. Spring 2011 FTW!
Very close... Very close...! If only it didn't slip at at the end.
The first 2/3 of the anime was indeed excellent. Very emotional, in a good way. The characters were interesting and the story and atmosphere were great too. Of course, the ED was awesome.
Anaru's nickname sounds the same as Anal and that was entertaining in a different way.
Oh yeah, and Yukiatsu.
Just... it couldn't tie everything up and slipped up at the end.
For instance, Menma and her interaction with others. So she could just move objects in front of others?! Then do that in the first place!
What reason does the show give for this? "That's just the way they are" Haha, oh yeah, sure. I'm not buying it. Come back after you prove to me that Jintan and Menma are retarded and have no ability to use logic.
I thought that perhaps Menma couldn't interact with others. But no, she can, it turns out. Now explain to me why Poppo didn't react to Menma eating food right in front of him earlier in the anime.
Another thing was Anal's friends. There were signs that foretold that maybe they were not as bad as we thought. So surely they will have some interaction later that will certify this, right? No, they don't appear until the end of the anime.
Then there is Poppo's confession in the last episode, the over-dramatic presentation in the last episode, Tsuruko looking like cross-dressed Yukiatsu, etc.
All in all, it was still a good anime. Just not as perfect as it seemed earlier on.
It also taught me not to expect anything from Noitamina. They have interesting ideas that don't attach themselves to moe and all, but for both C and this, they just couldn't tie up their ideas together. So I'll probably think about avoiding their shows from now on.
A good show can become a bad memory with a bad end (like this or C)
A bad show can become a good memory with a good end (like AYAKASHI)
It's interesting to see shows like this and C start out so good and turn out mediocre while shows that started out bad like Sengoku Otome turn out good.
That's just the world, I guess.
I already wrote up a review for the show over at my blog so to summarize, yes I enjoyed the show quite a bit (good thing too, I did start the original thread for it after all XD). Menma being a ghost didn't bother me, all the characters had their ups and downs but (with the exception of Yukiatsu) I was able to understand and like them in the end, the voice-acting was solid, the music worked and the art was pretty to look at. What I liked best about the show was that it fit really well into just 11 episodes which, as past noitaminA shows have shown, is really tricky to do so kudos to all the writers who managed to pull this off. The show gets an 8.5/10 for me and I'd love to see it licensed in the US and get a copy of it.
I also wrote a lengthy blog review/summary of the series. In brief - the best show of 2011 so far in a walk for me. And I'm delighted at how popular it's turned out to be.
I was set to give it a perfect ten before the ending, but the ending was a bit of let down imo. It's strength was obviously in it's characters and the way their relationships have such depth and complexity to them.
Overall score: 9/10
Before this season, A-1 pictures has done little worth noting for me, but when I saw the synopsis for this anime coupled with the fact that it landed a notamina block spot, I was certain that this was going to be a winner.
The first episode was emotionally riveting, and surely I knew we were in for something a little special this season.
I've always enjoyed stories that manage to make connections to you personally. To me that's one of Ano Hana's greatest strength, its ability to pull on one's nostalgic chords. The whole story about old friends split apart (And in this case it's about something emotionally traumatic for the group) and managing to come back together and move on was a fairly straight forward, but effective means of drawing interest from the viewers. Most of if not all of us have probably gone through similar experiences where we split with old friends for one reason or another, and I'm sure many of us have thought about those so called "glory days" as well. In that regard, it managed to make an emotional connection with me from the synopsis alone.
However, this strength may also be Ano Hana's greatest weakness. Due the nature of having to follow the series intermittently week by week, and the fact that the series drives an emotional punch right from the start, there were many moments throughout the anime which failed to elicit the proper sympathetic response. No, one does not necessarily have to tear up or anything, as I never expected that sort of emotionally involving standard, but the anime still should be able to properly maintain the emotional involvement that it started with.
The series was weakest on this front during the middle portions of the story. However, I felt they managed to come full circle by the end, so Ano Hana gets points from me there. Though I will say that the last episode could have been a tad less melodramatic.
Perhaps not necessarily secondary to this strength/weakness though is Ano Hana's characters. Almost everyone in the group was developed extremely well, and each had their own little story, and each had their own problems and frustrations. Couple this with the fact that there's actually 3 guys and 3 girls in the Super Peace Busters instead of the usual harem or 4-5 girl ensemble, and it provided a much more interesting composition of characters in the main cast than you'd typically see in any other kind of show.
Really, the first thing a story should always do after creating the premise to make sure you have characters worth caring about. None of these stock cardboard cut out archetype characters that can't stand up on their own when compared to all the other stock cardboard cut out archetype characters. There needs to be some sort of substance, something more to see that just their quirky personality traits.
And no, it's not simply about giving them some sort of dramatic past like "my parents died in an accident, or my family, or my friend," and then showing them to be sad or distraught. Sure you can throw details like that into any story, but if you don't manage to successfully detail each character's personality, their woes and likes, how they respond to different events, why they think a certain way, then it's hard to understand what these characters even really think about in the end.
While melodrama and magical realism has been done to a certain extent before (See KEY animes), I feel like Ano Hana manages to separate itself and its narrative significantly. One large reason being the length of it, but also the type of story it wants to tell. Melodrama doesn't define a narrative, and people shouldn't try to pin Ano Hana as a story about cheap emotional involvement. I always felt it had a genuine and honest feeling to its story, something that shines true all the way to the end no matter how sappy it got.
That's probably the best word to describe Ano Hana, genuine.
I fully recommend the story to anyone who can accept the premise as is and whose sole goal isn't to make themselves cry. Ano Hana is a story that is more about the journey than the destination.
Animation Quality: 8
Voice Actors: 9
Emotional Involvement: 8
I think Anohana was definitely one of the most notable series of the season if not of the whole year. The plot centered around a group of friends, their past and their loss seen through a realistic and mature perspective was certainly a refreshing breeze over a sea of overused tropes and stereotypes.
The story was well defined and had a precise goal from the start, the absence of dilly-dallying and filler subplots is certainly praiseworthy. Notable is also the fact that there aren't really many unanswered questions left in the air apart from the nature of Menma and the related strange phenomenon, but that's acceptable.
Great care was exercized on the characterization of the main cast and this is a given considering this was a character-driven story. The execution was anyway very well done and this was well proven by the degree of affection that the super peace buster managed to attract from the audience.
I have however two complaints:
The first is that I wished that this story showed more about the childhood of these friends rather than the few fragmented flashbacks we have seen. In comparison 20th century boys was a lot more fascinating precisely because past and present unfolded in paralel binaries. Anohana had all the premises to become such a story, but the creators decided to focus on the present and left the past undeveloped.
My second complaint is that the ending pushed the drama way too far for my tastes rendering it awkward and somewhat hilarious, the exact opposite of what it should have been.
It's clear that different people had different reaction to this, but it cannot be denied that about half of those who followed this series with enthusiasm weren't positively impressed, and that's certainly not a good thing.
Overall I gave this series a 8.0 which from me is a very high score. Having seen more than 300 anime series I have become quite critic and hard to please.
This was a very powerful, genuine, dark anime that really had me until the last episode gave it a very drawn out, saccharine and inconclusive ending. I think the last episode should have focused less on Menma the ghost and more on a mature, serious examination of the emotions of those who survived and how they are going to move forward via real actions. Menma herself was the weakest link, and it seems ridiculous to develop her more since she is already dead and going to disappear forever no matter what--so for me the buildup was based on these well-fleshed out, living characters that I wanted to see find change.
I loved the music--both the ED and OP were excellent. "Our summer together has ended" is a beautiful, sad statement of the emotional center of this anime, which is bitter. 7/10
8/10 for me. It lost a lot of quality towards the end for me. I know there was no good way to end it, but seeing a bunch of teenagers cry their eyes out... not my cup of tea. But everything before that was great and the was music good too.
Is it a cultural thing? I don't mind all of the crying in the show. It was pretty elegant and not overly melodramatic. In fact Poppo's breakdown and final scream are one of the most potent and visceral emotions I've seen in a show. Also, I thought Poppo was very well foreshadowed with a lot of a subtle hints. The more I look at it, Menma is more of a symbol than she is a character. She represents something the characters want back into their lives.
Interesting Ano Hana tidbits I caught after 2nd viewing.
In Episode 3 when Menma first prays to Touko she tears up without reason... or so we thought.
In Episode 8 when Jinta finally cries, instrumental version of "I Left You" is playing. Menma tears up again and the promise being fulfilled kick starts her memory which is slowly revealed until Episode 11 where we find out what the wish was and "I Left You" is playing.
If anyone listened to the lyrics of "I Left You" It's about not hiding your pain and you'll eventually get over you loss and that you should not be ashamed to show your grief.
I really liked how Menma wasn't there for herself but for Jinta and a promise to Touko. It was just a bonus that Menma was able to spend time with her friends again and help mend their wounds. The Busters Reconciling wasn't a requirement for her to go to heaven.
8/10 for me because it would be a 10/10 if given a couple more episodes.
Also, I wonder if this would have worked better as a feature length film like 5cm/sec or Tokikake?
I am not going to break this masterpiece into pieces and rate them. Just going with my guts and feelings :
10/10 for being one of those few anime that will leave a mark in my memory forever.
Thank you A-1 pictures and the cast for such a masterpiece.
It definitely starts out as 10/10 for me, but the latest doesn't make me "moved" as much as the earlier episode, so I have to give this 9/10 instead. Tempted to give it 8/10, but considering anime lately weren't that good storywise, I'll leave it at 9.
Well, this series moved me to tears. That makes it an automatic 10, from me. 'Nuff said.
ahhh... finally the overall thread is going out
I don't watch this show until I hear the wonderful ending song.... (yeah! It's because of the ending song!)
so I will give the audio : 10/10
I must agree that this anime is original! I never encountered such plot and story.... It's simple but have many complicated and development.... involving emotion so much and maybe moved the watcher into tears....
then, I will give the story : 10/10
I don't have any comment about the seiyuu... It's just like the seiyuu are perfectly perform their character... I must give many credits to Anaru's seiyuu especially (for most of crying scenes, her performance is really good)... Jintan's seiyuu is little plain but the rest is perfect especially in last episode...
Each character has unique traits and some unpredictable problems. Each of them have special connection with 10 years ago's scene and still haunted by their own problems... How they finally can unite and move forward are the best part of this anime
10/10 for the characters and seiyuu
finally, I must say that this anime is satisfy me... I don't really like the genre but this anime really one of the best slice-of-life anime I ever watched (so realistic and emotional)
My only wish is they made this become 12-episode anime... Just split the last episode in two part, man! You can give better result, I think!
but overall 10/10 from me
AnoHana is all about the setup, to me. Delightfully animated, and blessed with a strong cast, you know most of what you need to within the first few episodes. From there, it's just a matter of coasting to the end, riding the winds of what made it great in the first place. The result is that it peaks a bit early, but still delivers on the promised laughs and tears.
I seem to have a thing for emotionally messed-up anime characters; I really enjoy analyzing and sympathizing with them, and AnoHana has a main cast full of these characters. It's all perfectly justified by the central conflict.
That brings me to AnoHana's other strength: Even with a sizable cast, it is laser-focused on a single plot and theme. They had 11 episodes, and they didn't mess around. Very little wasted motion here.
8/10 (Very Good), with a special mention that this is one of the only times where one series had both my favorite OP and ED of the season. Both used to tremendous effect.
That was a fine review and it was nice of you to link a video for the lazy, however I think the sound from the anime was a bit too loud-- it's extremely difficult to talk over it and hear what you have to say.
Cheers Archon. I tried messing with the volume a number of times, but the outcome was always hard to predict using movie maker. Plus when talking about characters and sound I kinda wanted the background to be heard. Perhaps I could've considered being quiet at times.
But I'll keep that in mind for future reference. I'm sure there are plenty of ways I can improve just getting used to movie maker.
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