Bakemonogatari - Overall Series Impressions & Total Series Rating
This thread is to be used for discussing the entire episodes of Bakemonogatari ... 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 :)
Animation Quality: 9
By far one of the best animations of all time for me. Numerous animation techniques can be found utilized throughout episodes and they all complimented each other. Absolute perfection for me. Sometimes it felt like I was watching a high quality OVA or animated movie, excluding the web episodes of course but the quality and detail of lighting, backgrounds and animation just brought this show onto another level. In fact, I think other anime should have this as a standard to animation instead using cheap gimmicks or illusions to induce effects. Notable scenes for me include the first episode, classrooms were very well drawn and rendered on screen, I could not believe it was an anime TV show; Rainy Devil fight, funky colors for blood but high paced action that was fluid and of course Shinobu's high octane flips and kick, that part was a knockout, even for the web quality. The only thing keeping this from a 10 is the fact that Shaft made too many changes and cuts from the broadcast version to the disc, in fact sometimes it made it worse. However just based on Blu-Ray, it deserves a 10 out of 10.
Voice Actors: 10
Do you really need to ask why? Kamiya was really in character as Araragi-kun and was really able to emphasize emotions quite well, nothing felt awkward or forced from the guy. Kamiya could pronounce "paradigm shift" correctly! You have to give him that. Chiwa Saito really stood out with her overruling and sadistic tone that slandered Araragi-kun every chance she could. Including the heartfelt revalation of what happened to her and her mother she really became her own where you could hear regret and parts of tears about to burst. Not only that, she knows how to speak English very well! Correct pronunciation and all. Examples include "I love you," and "Parent Teacher Association." And there was a slight American spin to it. Yui Horie did very well as the sharp minded Hanekawa and superbly as Black Hanekawa accentuating all the "Nya's" within her sentences which I find difficult. Especially with the tongue twister which proved to be very cute and distracting. I don't know how Hanazawa does it, but she just provided the cutest voice within the entire cast acting like the innocent sister that she is, with minor references to her true self and intentions. My minor bout with the seiyuu's is the listing of Hirano as Oshino Shinobu without muttering a single line or even an exclamation. I hope they fix that in the future.
The very unique play on words, meta-humor and references made this series quite the interesting one. Although it gaps the non-Japanese speaking audience further with the word play it involves, it doesn't do so to a degree where it becomes tedious and over used. The show intelligently uses various humor devices to capture the audiences laughter from simple gags to famous references from other shows or hysterical nonsense. A variety can be shown in epsiode 2 and 13 as there is an abundance of gags ranging from first touch's to a cafe maids stress. Although humor plays a major component within the anime there is also plot driven dialogue that sends this anime truly running quite smoothly plot-wise. Having monologues with discrete explanations and arguments that spark into conflict that all transition extremely well. Combined with the animation, they are able to turn this dialogue filled show into one the most best anime's of all time IMO. The plot this show follows is quite linear where a sudden problem appears and Araragi comes to save the day, but it's the twists and ideas that make the plot so ever different from the other shows out there where they have to kill one enemy after the next. Having the supernatural theme, the show draws together a unique story on oddities.
I have to thank this show for introducing me to the BEST ED for 2009. No, "Don't Say Lazy" was a bit repetitive for me and and the lyrics were kind of awry. supercell's ED "Kimi no Shirai Monogatari" was an absolute masterpiece, it alone just wins 10 out of 10. As supercell's debut album was introduced to me I anxiously waited for their next single which not only did just as the ED but in my case, surpassed beyond it. Back on topic now, the heroine OP's were definitely a plus and something new of a concept to me and worked quite well. But the broadcast version let it slip all over the place and didn't quite capture the idea as well as it should have. But the Blu-Ray on the other hand fixes it completely. The Original Soundtrack compliments the on screen action extremely well, I don't know it works but listening to the OST alone just makes completely repetitive, yet on screen it feels refined and unique.
The production involved in this no doubt stressed the editors as the scenes and cuts were mixed throughout the broadcast version led to some disastrous results. Note episode 10 for the disaster, where the battle between the snake oddity and Araragi was mostly cut out which led to numerous seconds of lost action and confusing moments. Again, they are able to rescue this by adding the missing scenes into the Blu-Ray. Another notable scene for cuts is the Rainy-Devil fight. However with that said, the editing for this was done very well, with the words on screen transitioning one scene to the next. It didn't tire the eyes yet was interesting and sometimes foreshadowed some the plot implicitly. I found it very appealing. The only problem is when large texts are used to introduce the background of each character at each new arc, it sometimes felt like I was being teased with the paragraphs they present as it only allows the audience only to read a little excerpt before introducing another slab of text which sometimes distressed me. However going through it having already read the story adds a little a sense of a faithful adaptation. This was the only weakest part of the entire series as everyone experienced the massive delays that SHAFT decided to take head on. Disregarding that fact, just going through episodes felt smooth and no scenes felt forced or out of place. They lost points for the broadcast version and delays.
This may be my new favorite anime of all time. It brought many elements and themes which I have never seen before in an animation series and it brought many laughter's and gripping moments. The uniqueness of monologues and the way they presented it was done so in format where it didn't feel repetitive nor boring or lengthy which is extremely impressive. I hate long speeches, but I guess they solved this problem somehow.
Emotional Involvement: 10
Instantly drawn in by everything presented in the first episode. Enough said.
Bakemonogatari was really the seasonal anime gateway for me. I never really followed a season more intensely other than this one and it clearly showed me what shows like this potentially held. To me it was a perfect balance between everything in all elements for a story. Looking at the Blu-Ray version of this, it clearly deserves a 10 out of 10 in all aspects I reviewed above. Although this should be a 9 out of 10 after my points given to each aspect, the combined effect of all of these elements just mesh so well it becomes clear why some components were used as it is. Keeping it faithful, and amazing at the same time. Bakemonogatari should go down in anime history as one of the most best and unique shows out there. I don't think the American audiences will be getting this anytime soon, there's too much of a cultural gap that disallows the full appreciation of this. After all the audience was only intended for Japanese audiences, yet the cultural barrier didn't affect me.
OK, time for some personal thoughts about the show. There is a clear distinction between people who have read the novels and who haven't. The prologue is extremely confusing if no one has ever read a synopsis or read the books itself. However, it intrigued me to a point where I knew I had to look it up to find out what's just going on. With that being said, I just hope that Shaft take up Kizumonogatari because first it will refine the entire monogatari storyline even further but it may just do better than Bakemonogatari as it is much more high paced. Plus it'll allow for the full circle where the plot point returns to the beginning about the this series. Back on topic now... The way that Shaft handled this show was beyond failure to me, but I'm not reviewing how they handled producing the anime so it doesn't reflect it in my score. BUT! The quality they put into this definitely showed me that the time they took to delay this show on and on was not because they chose to but because they needed it to or it would've ended up in the dump with the lot. With that said, all is forgiven. As for the final episode, actually all stories presented have 3 aspects to work on. The beginning, the middle and the end. They are the most crucial aspects of story telling, now anime as a media usually have trouble ending a series, and I know why. It's always the questions for continuity or the possibility of one, but I find that very disheartening. If one part of the story ends, you must show that is a clear ending. Some movies and book do a terrible job and it just ruins the entire overall effect, even if I though it was perfect. Now the ending for this show did show a clear resolution but the comment Araragi made about probably coming in contact more oddities in the future just made me feel a little uneasy about the ending. I thought he was going on that date with Senjougahara. If he didn't mutter those words: Perfect Ending. The order of his monologue was completely jumbled, if they reorganized that monologue again, Perfect Ending as well. And that's it. I'm just looking forward to Kizumonogatari. Don't disappoint me Shaft, it's a question of time. Not quality. :)
Animation Quality: 9
Voice Actors: 10
Emotional Involvement: 10
The guy who voted this 6 shouldn't animes ever again.
The main problem with this anime was the staff not being able to make it on time. It took them way too long to complete the series, finishing... like what, almost a year after when it should have ended? Thanks to that, any passion I had for the anime has completed been washed down the drain and I'm left not really caring what is going on whenever the anime does air, be it once a month or once half a year.
I guess from my memories...
The animation was... Shaft. Lots of cuts and other "Look, my sense is so great, uhoho!" moments Shaft tends to add in, trying to hide the fact they didn't make it on time by their "Shaft" animation, etc. In general, it wasn't bad though. Over-exaggerated at times though.
Yoshino (Hoshino?) was cool.
Nadeko was cute (and her arc so lackluster).
Mayoi MaiMai went Mayoi ByeBye thanks to Nadeko
Class Pres... doesn't really matter herself, but I got to give my condolences to her for suffering the worse from the staff not being able to make it on time.
The rest doesn't really matter.
Story... varied from good to bad. Too much random and boring talking.
It really is fun to watch the sells of the DVDs though. It is so obvious which character is popular and which are not.
So, anyways, 6/10, which is average. If the anime actually finished on time, it might have been a different story though.
Actually, I thought about 7/10, but I couldn't help but lower down by 1 point because of a crazy worshipper unable to stand others not worshipping this anime.
Also for people who think that Shaft isn't a good studio for this series then I don't even what to say to you since clearly you have no idea how much face-to-face dialog is in this series. If it wasn't for Shaft's artistic style to make the series more colorful you'll much pretty have 20 minutes of two characters standing in the same place talking. Yes, I can surely say that that whole reason why the series sold so much is because Shaft was the one who made it.
Animation Quality: 9
Voice Actors: 9
Emotional Involvement: 6
Overall 9/10 . I liked this show . Some part were hilarious , some cool , some awesome ... Lazy to describe all .
This time , i didn't mind SHAFT's special works but don't do so much too .
And Nadeko is cute but as usual , goddamn Fanservice ...
I expected for more development , specially Shinobu .
Maybe a S2 . Hope .
Just re-reading sereade_beta's review again... and this is just disappointing:
"So, anyways, 6/10, which is average. If the anime actually finished on time, it might have been a different story though.
Actually, I thought about 7/10, but I couldn't help but lower down by 1 point because of a crazy worshipper unable to stand others not worshipping this anime."
I've already made my point about that this is the review of the show itself and what elements are in it. Not HOW they made it. I'm pretty sure that reviewers for just about anything don't take points off for delays unless the product or event is time-related being the main focus. Now for movies and animations, I'm positive this isn't the case. But the next point is just an insult. Taking one point off to provoke others is really a poor judgment. Not only that, you actually 'had' to mention it in the post. It would've been better if you just kept that statement to yourself.
Since a lot of this is talking more about how to review and not actually about the anime, we'll continue this with private messages, OK?
Also, with quoting and everything, it will take too much space.
Personally it isn't the most amazing series in the world to me. I enjoy it, but is it the greatest series ever created? In my opinion, it doesn't even get into my top ten favorite animes. The romance between Hitagi and Araragi is disjointed and pretty much thrown right into your face, there are characters that are not developed beyond a stereotype or a few tropes (hi Nadeko) and frankly I'm rather jaded by Shaft. They're making people pay extra money to get a finished episode, when the episode should have been finished before they decided to air it. Say what you want about other companies and their quality, but at least they air finished products while Shaft doesn't.
My ranking is based on the Bakemonogatari anime and not the series as a whole. For the entire anime, I give it a 6. While the voice actors and the script is great, there are many things that the series suffers.
1) Animation. Or lack of it. When people say that they think they're watching a slideshow it isn't just a joke. While there are moments of good fluid animation, there are many times that this element does not exist.
2) The music. Some tracks are wonderful, but a lot of tracks are just way too simple for my liking. Not saying it needs to be orchestra god-tier stuff, but some of these tracks sound like they were thrown together and composed in two minutes.
3) Emotional involvement. Again, lack of. I wasn't emotionally invested in many of the characters. Hitagi and Araragi's romance didn't interest me, maybe one or two characters actually felt realistic and sometimes the story was pushed back for the sake of some minor jokes.
I think Shaft didn't take this adaptation as seriously as they should have. Maybe they didn't expect for it to be as big of a hit as it was, but that doesn't mean much. Adaptation wise, they did excellent. But like I said, I'm judging this as an anime and not the entire series as a whole. And as an anime it was average to me. Hardly on the masterpiece level that many claim it to be. Then again, I don't think any anime I've ever watched got up to that level for me.
A visually impressive series, no doubt. In general, it all looked very sleek and smooth, but then I generally expect SHAFT to excel in the visual department. The animation itself wasn't so hot, but the art style softened that blow some.
Voice Acting: 7
Voice actors were well suited to their roles and delivered strong performances all around. That being said, there were only a few parts where it felt like the voice actors were able to really flex their muscles, as it were, so I can only give it a somewhat above-average score.
Good material overall. Characters were written convincingly and consistently for the most part, but as with the voice acting, the script only rarely breaks above the 'pretty good' mark for me, and I tend to reserve scores of 8/9/10 for things that really pop.
The ED is excellent, and if I were judging the soundtrack by that alone, I'd probably be giving this a 9. However, there are other tracks to consider, which struck me as decent at best. Nothing bad, but nothing so good I couldn't forget it. "Renai Circulation" was cute and quirky, but that only goes so far for me.
You can certainly tell that a great deal of work went into the editing process, making sure the cuts were meaningfully placed, but I have to say that over the course of the series, there were times when it felt overused. It's as though the producers were just trying to distract from the consequences of their approach to the actual content--mainly the sometimes jarringly uneven pacing.
Despite my gripes, I did have fun with the series for the most part. It was a nice, easily digestible series that I could unwind my brain with after a long day, or something simple to start it running early in the morning. I enjoyed it most early on, when I was getting acquainted with the first batch of characters, though as it went on, it quickly became very predictable. Without reading any spoilers, I reached a point where I wasn't surprised by anything that happened from episode three onward. Sometimes that doesn't really matter. Here, it felt like it detracted a lot for me.
Emotional Involvement: 7
Are there attachment-worthy characters? Yes. However, the main protagonist is not one of them. Araragi fits the martyr archetype to a T, with his only distinguishing trait being that he is also a vampire. Hitagi, Suruga and Nadeko are all significantly more textured. Meme was also interesting, even if the 'cagey mentor' is itself getting a bit overdone. It's not that there aren't characters I can invest in substantially, just that they're not the ones the story focuses on.
Certainly worth watching, and I'm glad I had the experience, but it's one of those series where I wouldn't particularly care to see more of it. Probably much more appealing to strong fans of fanservice and/or harem stuff, but for me it's basically light viewing to space out other shows.
Also, as I said already, both the Shaft and this series has their distinct "storytelling". People either love Shaft or they hate them simply because they are artsy. As for Bake its a dialog driven series with very kinky scenes, people who don't enjoy seeing 14 year old girls getting mouth raped simply would not enjoy the show.
Anyway no score for me, I don't believe an arbitrary numeric value can represent something as complex as an opinion. We'll see if I'm bothered enough to write out a a review though :heh:
Enjoyed the series immensely. The decision to move from 12 to 15 episodes both hurt and helped the series, but that's neither here nor there. I've given it a 9/10.
Up to ep 12 it was 10/10. But somehow i can't really give out a rating by the end of ep 15. Do not feel a sense of "completed" yet
In short I'd rate as so:
Animation: 10, a different art style, yet I still felt it was very well done, and the odd styles it used at times were interesting.
Voice Acting: 10, Really I was impressed by the whole cast here, they all did an excellent job fitting their roles.
Music: 10, BGMs were all good, and all 5 OP were good to amazing, and ED was the best ED theme ever.
Script: 10, Script was excellent allowed for plenty of hilarious moments while still keeping the story going, and feeling very unique and interesting.
Editing: 9, would be 10 if not for the airing version being as good as DVD/BR.
Enjoyment: 12, It made for an excellently enjoyable series to watch that often used well crafted humor as well, that frankly made me laugh at times hard than I ever have at any other anime series, yet when was serious it was gripping for that as well, showing how to handle both well.
Emotional Involvement: 9, because compared to Clannad/AS, it wasn't perfect in this aspect :p
Overall: 10, See below.
Sometimes it's really a wonderful thing to be seasons behind everybody else. You missed all the discussions and the weekly cliffhangers but you also missed the delays and the...weekly cliffhangers.
I imagine people who followed Bakemonogatari from the beginning must have felt faded about the ending, what's with the ridiculously long delay. I...feel differently. I thought it was wonderfully done, barring of course the delay itself.
Gah, SHAFT. If they drop their pretensions and get up from their lazy (or alternatively budget-starved) asses, they could awe anyone. I have a very diverse impression of the show's animation quality because of that. First, the world feels empty. I literally can't remember an unnamed character in the entire show. Stylistic choice? Sure. But some stylistic choices are not very good ideas. The budget-saving eye closeups get really really annoying. They're not cool and they're not expressive, though it's not as bad in Bakemonogatari as it was in Arakawa. Likewise for the occasional unrealistically disproportionate, empty backgrounds. Huge fields of bicycles and all those nonsense.
On the other hand, when they did their best, it was magnificent. The final episode was an extraordinarily well-directed visual feast including some inspiring high-impact action from the series' quietest character.
When people complain about anime's animation in comparison with Western ones, this series both prove and disprove their misgivings. With a caveat: it's SHAFT. They're not very representative of anyone.
No complaints here. In fact I think they all do a wonderful job, especially Arararararagi's VA, whom I think is the same as the spirited young man from Arakawa, another SHAFT show.
Nisio- ah screw it, that novelist guy is probably responsible for the dialogue's wit and charm, but SHAFT should be complimented for successfully adapting it. If I have a complaint it is that none of the girls are paid enough attention, ironically enough. I wanted to see more Tsundere-chan when she isn't there, then I wanted Muraragi to chat up Mayoi after a few episodes without her, then I thought sweet Nadeko should really get more conversations going with her beloved sempai and...
Although, I admit, the one problem I had with it was that the interaction between the girls are too rare. Arararagi is a great protagonist, but the show would have been more dynamic with more players in the game at once, so the speak.
This is omitting any complaints about learning very little even by inference about Shinobu and the apparently very important vampire incident before the story begins, because I've heard they're part of a prequel story that will be adapted later.
If there's one thing I think SHAFT never fails to impress, it's their choice of related songs. Their in-character OP's are a magnificent use of an otherwise peripheral element. Nadeko's was by far my favorite. Such...win. I was moved. XD
I don't understand this option. Shouldn't it be part of the respective elements of the animation and the script?
It was great. Now I see what everybody else was going crazy about. I marathon'd it of course, so it might have been a different experience.
There were some annoyances though, as mentioned above, and I certainly wanted more, much more in fact. Which ultimately just means I really like it, moar plz and with proper animation this time, etc., etc.
I'm going to use this as a character section instead because I think this show is entirely character driven. Heavy crabs and vampires and bakeneko and snakes are not really all that interesting by themselves in this series, but rather in how they affect the characters (Hitagi Crab). The whole point of the show is to fall in with the characters.
And I will say that I think they really did make the show.
Let's start from the least-liked first though:
I'm actually not all that impressed about the cagey mentor guy, who's, well, a cagey mentor. He's not bad by any means but we've seen him before and he isn't very different here.
Suruga is my second least favorite though I do not hate her either. Her callously cruel "dark" side expressed in the 8th episode did not endear her to me very much -- it's not a kind of dark side that makes yanderes popular, for example, or spicing up an otherwise ordinary character (see below). Her later behavior made up for it though. She becomes a good friend to Ararararagi with some fun dynamics going.
Then there's the Class President, Tsubasa -- for some reason I can't really associate her name with her character though. She seems like the most even-keeled of all the characters and consequently the least interesting, but she made up for it and beyond by having the appealing kind of dark side that spices her up. One is her hidden eroticism and jealousy (expressed rather crassly in the final OP, lolSHAFT), the other is the Cat, which is a great character by itself, more complex and more human that it likes to admit.
Next is Nadeko. She too when looked at objectively isn't really such a special character, her screentime is limited and she isn't drawing laughter and applause, but I'm not here to be objective am I? That OP won me over to her. Completely. Plus I like her design and the feeling of her being more than a little girl but not yet a woman, a perfect age to have a really really special crush.
The last two girls I consider to be relatively equal in my liking, for very different reasons. Everybody's favorite seems to be Senjougahara Hitagi, and I agree she is quite the character. The irony behind her character is that she really *is* a tsundere despite the impression that she is being fitted into a tsundere while she is not. Do I make sense? No? Let me put this more clearly. She seems aware of her beyond the 4th wall archetype and therefore plays around with it, and that gave me the impression that she really isn't a tsundere but a subversion as such. But some of her crucial developments end up confirming her as one -- the roundabout way she kept trying to make Aragi confess, her harsh exterior and affectionate intentions, the sequence of the epic date. So it's a lot of fun whenever she's around, though for being Rararagi's girlfriend she doesn't have nearly enough screentime.
Mayoi...is the most fun character in the show, though I like her equally as I like Hitagi. I think I may have been influenced by Arararagi, who seems to be most open and happiest around her. And I mean who wouldn't? She's hilarious, energetic, clever but childlike (obviously) and with in my opinion got the best twist of all the stories. I was quite shocked by how eagerly he "sexually harassed" her but in retrospect it was both utterly hilarious and quite insightful as to how comfortable he was with her.
And finally I crown Araragi my favorite of the series because he's really that good. In a series like this a pathetic or even decent-but-not-quite-there male lead would have thrown the whole thing to hell. He is neither but rather someone impressive enough to hold his own in idiosyncratic conversations and throw himself head on at danger. The second point needs expansion: many male protagonists are fully ready to throw themselves at danger, but he does so and feels justified in my eyes because he is almost immortal and he really does have complex psychological issues though they are not clarified on. He acts, in short, like an immortal with a Jesus complex would. He is familiar enough to connect immediately and then proceeds to defy simple expectations by being a unique character himself.
One might notice that I omit both the sisters and Shinobu on account of them not being shown very much. Do I like them? Yes I do, quite a lot actually. But I don't think there's enough material to declare definitively that I totally love them, as I could for the other characters that have been focused on.
Oh yeah and there's Senjougahara's dad. Sorry Hitagi-papa.
Average = Total Series Rating:
Grades? What is this nonsense? I'm not nearly egotistical enough to think I could slap a number on some work of art and call it a day. Err...no offense to everyone else, I'm sure you all are giving it grades for different reason than I do. Oh yeah and please don't check back on my post history because I'm pretty sure I used to give out ratings myself. Ahem.
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