Thursday, September 6, 2012

[Jas] Anime Rewind – Double Threat

[JT's note:  You all seem to love Jas's reviews... So, here's a double dose for you.]

So while surfing youtube (looking for cute cat videos as per usual), I stumbled upon a review of the 20 most epic anime characters by gigguk. It's an 8 part list and of course there were some characters in there that I knew of. But there were others from animes that I’d never heard of before. So, I set off to watch some of those. One, was pretty new called Darker than Black, something that I remember seeing while watching other series but never watched it myself. The second was Gankutsuou: The Count of Monte Cristo. Which has a really interesting art/animation style. I mean, I like seeing others views of epic characters, so I found this interesting!

Darker Than Black
Release Year: 2007
Episode Count: 25
Epic Character Rank: #19- Hei
Hei was ranked pretty low on the epic character list, which was mainly for season 2 of Darker than Black. (I haven’t seen the second season yet) I enjoyed the series for the most part, it wasn’t too spectualur in my opinion. Though it was part of the plot, a lot of the character lacked emotions and I felt like I didn’t get to know much about the past lives of them main characters all that much.

Mao guys....his name even SOUNDS like meow. 
My all time favorite character was most obviously the talking cat, Mao. I mean c’mon. I love cats. So that made the show vastly more exciting for me. Though you don’t get to learn much about his past. :/ Well, I still liked the series as a whole and I will probably watch season 2, just because I’m interested as to why it made the creator of the epic character video rank him so low on the list.

Overall, the plot line was interesting, with a few holes I would have liked to be filled. The characters were, for the most part, interesting though I found some to be rather flat. There were a lot of elements that seem to be in many animes now adays: Lolita girls, assassians, sister complex, and something new. The whole “stars” thing I found interesting, though I still feel like I don’t really understand the whole contracting thing and why some people became contractors and others didn’t. Maybe I wasn’t paying attention well enough when it was explained or something.

Still…..when Hei was explained near the end I was shocked. I honestly hadn’t seen that coming at all. Nor did I really understand the ending either. Maybe I’d need to watch it again, or watch the second season. Or maybe I need to pay attention more instead of doing dishes and trying to watch anime at the same time. (I can’t help that I’m a WORKING WOMAN OKAY??!?!) <spoiler> When Hei made the two different choices I got confused, especially when Amber turned back time so that he could choose again after making the first choice. So I was kinda confused at the final choice he made….I know he used his power to change everything to a quantum level…but I would have liked his/his sister’s powers to be explained a little more <end spoiler>
Can't lie, he is super smexy 

Perhaps the second season will clear up more things, and perhaps I will enjoy it more than the creator of the epic anime character videos. (He mentioned moe/Lolita girls and you know something…I like them….)
Just from this gif the second season looks....promising.....

Also not going to lie…I had some ships that I wanted to see happen. DREAMS CRUSHED AS PER USUAL! T_T

Though it was a good anime, I find it hard to really write a riveting review on it. I puttered through it, liked it mildly, and I’m interested in the second season. 
recommend giving it a shot if you haven't watched it already, it's pretty interesting and the fight scenes are awesome. Also, the powers people have are interesting, very original! Also. Yin. Adorable.

Gankutsuou: The Count of Monte Cristo
Release Year: 2004
Episode Count: 24
Epic Character Rank: # 7 – The Count
Okay, although the animation was sometimes blinding. I found myself staring at the clothing/hair far too often..the patterns were so vibrant!! Can’t. Stop. Watching. Patterns. Move. When. They. Move. Augh! But. Ignoring all of that, I really like the story. They keep things vague, like a mystery, and that might be why I really enjoyed watching it.
It also might be because of the vampire. I love revenge stories. I just love the Count.

The Count (left..duh) and Albert
Albert, the lead, is a little annoying at times. But his clothes, totally awesome. I also enjoy the borderline yaoi-ish relationship he has with the count….but I hate his naieve-ness when it comes to the count as well. He trusts so easily, it seems, and that bothers me. His best friend, Franz, is a relatively flat character for the most part, I feel like they should have given him more of a background. I think I would have liked to see more emotions, don’t get me wrong, the characters do show emotion, but there are a few key moments where I would have liked some more. (That’s the girl in me though)

The series started out strong and picked up pretty fast, which was great. There wasn’t a long introduction-type section. I’m not a fan of the opening or ending songs though…and that hurts my soul because I really do like the series as a whole.

I ship Franz and Albert, Franz totally wants Albert, you can’t deny it. And I won’t lie….<spoiler> When Franz died in Albert’s arms I was bawling my little eyes out and momentarily totally hated the Count with all my heart and soul. WHY DO MY SHIPS ALWAYS DIE??!??!! It was just so touching how the last thing Franz did was wish Albery happy birthday after fighting the duel to the death in Albert’s place. The whole time Franz was always just trying to protect Albert. AH THE LOVE!!! </end spoiler>

This whole revenge story is so well planned out and there is so much to it. So may people intertwined and hiding scandals. SO MANY FEELS WHILE WATCHING THIS ANIME!!! TEARS! TEARS!!! There is such hatred, love, despair, ruin, and forgiveness in this series. <Spoiler> When the count, Edmond Dantes dies, after getting a kiss on the cheek from Albert, which frees him from the hold over his body, I just wanted to cry when he told Albert to remember his real name. OH I SHIP THEM TOO! TEARS! TEARS!! Edmond was really attractive in the end as well….can’t lie. Even while bleeding out. OH WHY OH WHY?!?!?! Albert loved him to the end, even though Edmon, the count, wanted to kill him pretty much till his last breath. <end spoiler>

My feels..... GROSS SOBBING!
It’s so deep. SO DEEP! Even though sometimes I didn’t like Albert, because he is just so emotional and so trusting that it bothers me. His forgiveness is astounding, even for people that he shouldn’t forgive.

Oh the final act (aka last episode) One of my ship dreams came true and I smiled so hard. SO HARD! T_T Weeping tears of joy, excuse me. Even though there were so many sad moments in the anime, so much heart break and revenge, I’m glad to see such a relatively heart warming and happy ending to the show.

now that it's over....I'm dead...from the feels

I suggest watching this. It has everything. EVERYTHING! It exceeded my expectations!

Other animes I plan to check out after watching the youtube videos:
Release Year: 2004
Episode Count: 74
Epic Character Rank: # 2 – Johan


Samari Camploo
Release Year: 2004
Episode Count: 26
Epic Character Rank: #14 – Mugen

Have any other suggestions for me to watch? I always love trying out older series that I haven’t seen before!

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