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Old 2009-02-25, 01:26   Link #21
AS Oji-kun
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Under a Starry Sky
Age: 68
The ones I like were perfectly paced and addicted me with lovable and interesting characters and a solid followable plot.
I really think you should give Nodame Cantabile a try, unless you absolutely hate classical music. And even if you think you do, still give it a try because the characters might win you over. It's not a deep plot -- two young adults trying to begin their professional lives while still having fun and perhaps finding romance along the way. Both the principals are definitely "lovable and interesting" though, and the story keeps moving along.

Here are some other shows with varying amounts of mostly linear plots and characters (mostly all female) that I'd say fall into the lovable and interesting category.

The first two are chldren.

Shion (Shion no Ou) - I mentioned this series earlier before seeing its conclusion. I was disappointed in the ending, but it's still worth watching because Shion herself is a terrific character -- a determined young mute girl who's trying to break into the top ranks of professional Shougi. Ultimately her personal development proved more compelling than the parallel story concerning her parents' murder.

Murasaki (Kure-nai) - A seven-year-old girl with the heart of a child and the mind of an adult, Murasaki has been kidnapped (rescued?) from her parents' estate. She's then entrusted to the care of a sixteen-year-old boy who attends high school by day but by night works at a dangerous part-time job. One of the best collectively-acted anime shows I've watched with an engaging, though fundamentally a bit preposterous, story.

Shurrei (Saiunkoku Monogatari) - My daughter thinks Shurrei's too nosy and often annoying, but I still love her smarts, pluck and determination. Shurrei's story is an engaging one; she wishes to become the first female Imperial official in a fantasy Asian land. Surrounding her in this quest are a large number of incredibly "bishie" men from the Emperor on down. Since Shurrei is also the eldest princess of a leading political clan, marriage, with or without romance, is always on someone's mind, though usually not on hers.

Balsa (Seirei no Moribito) - Balsa's turning thirty and is still making her living as a bodyguard in another imperial epic. She becomes entrusted with the protection of a young prince who may be possessed by an evil spirit. Probably the most beautifully-animated television show I've seen; you'll understand why after watching the first ten minutes. Again I had some problems with how the story eventually developed, but it's still one of the best shows I've watched. The plot is pretty linear, though the fantasy aspects are sometimes a bit obscure. The boy prince is also quite appealing since he's not the stereotypical whiny child of privilege that such characters often are.

And now for some semblance of balance, a guy.

"Apothecary" (Bakeneko/Mononoke) - He's lovable in a different way according to his fans among the women on this board. In his travels, the Apothecary encounters a variety of demons which he can exorcise only after identifying their three defining characteristics. Artistically this looks like no other show you've seen; it's closer to the psychedelic style of the Beatles' Yellow Submarine than it is to most anime. What really makes this show work for me, though, is the performance by Sakurai Takahiro in the lead role. He mixes wit, dread and cynicism in every line of dialogue. There's no long plot here, though; they're short-story arcs of 2-4 episodes each.

I'm going to suggest Monster again to you as well, though some might argue about how linear the plot is. The story requires the full 74 episodes to unfold, and it has a variety of twists, turns, and parallel developments along the way. At times the main character doesn't appear for a good stretch of episodes. Nevertheless the plot isn't really convoluted since the ultimate objective always remains clear. I'll also say that while I like and admire both the main characters, Dr. Tenma and Nina Fortner, one of the best characters ever to appear in anime, Grimmer, doesn't show up until at least halfway through the story.

Last edited by SeijiSensei; 2009-02-25 at 01:47.
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