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 Post subject: Otome Youkai Zakuro - Prepare to be Bewitched!
PostPosted: February 22nd, 2011, 2:33 pm 
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Joined: March 15th, 2007, 11:57 pm
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Otome Youkai Zakuro is set in Japan where supernatural beings known as spirits co exist with humans.

Basically about the Ministry of Spirit Affairs, a military effort to resolve spiritual related matters. 3 men from the military work with a group of spirits(Yojin)(they get partnered with 4 half spirit girls(Han-yo)) to deal with various odd jobs. Of course a plot is foreshadowed and shows up and it all resolves by the end of it in this 13 episode series.

Basically you got Agemaki Kei, a princely type who is scared of spirits. Then theres the stoic man of few words, Yoshinozakura Riken. To round it off you get the young overconfident braggart Hanakiri Ganryu. These guys get plopped into this newly established team and get partnered with half spirits(half fox we find out).

Kei gets put together with Zakuro, the hot headed tomboyish tsundere type who is actually weak to princely antics(which Kei goes overboard with at first to hide his fear of spirits) which leads to much hilarity at the start(which unfortunately doesn't last when the cat gets out of the bag).

Riken gets paired with Susukihotaru, a shy lady-like type. Both being similar somewhat complement each other very well, and the romantic scenes between the two are quite sweet.

Ganryu gets paired with the playful twins Bonbori and Hozuki. As he can tell them apart, they automatically take a liking towards him which results him them being all over him all the time. And he doesn't seem to mind too much except when they start to feed him. You can more or less consider Bonbori and Hozuki a single entity.

So you go these characters and the dynamics between them which the show handles pretty well despite the short episode count. The pairings complement very well. The men overcome the fact they are relatively powerless with regards to their partners but learn to deal with it and their partnerships blossom into something more. Kei's spirit-phobia isn't overly played out, they joke just enough with it and he overcomes it before it gets annoying(like he's already half over it by episode 2). There are also great wonderful comedic moments, stuff like Zakuro dealing with her dislike of the Westernization of Japan and coming to terms with drinking cow's milk. Wouldn't call the main story that great(main villains are pretty cliche with exaggerated actions with regards to their motivation), but it works and the main appeal are characters and relationships. Animation is beautiful. While the manga is ongoing(have no idea about differences), the anime manages to resolve the plot it started with no loose ends and we get a life goes on sorta ending with relationships having progressed here and there.

Will we get a season 2? Don't know, but while the show doesn't exactly need a season 2 it is definitely desirable.

So yeah, romance, comedy and relationships with a dash of action here and there. I felt it was done really well regardless and I haven't felt quite as refreshed by an anime in a while. Despite its episodic nature for most of it, I still couldn't stop watching even with the lack of like cliffhangers and the like. Like an active desire to keep watching, rather than 'oh this show is amusing enough and I'm free so I'll keep watching' or 'oh crap cliffhanger what happens next'. Its short and sweet and wraps itself up pretty nicely, something I feel is a rarity these days. Also three different ending themes, each corresponding to the different pairings. There is also a little battle song which they sing in some of the fights which is quite catchy to listen to.

So if you are fond of characters and relationships and would like it in a more fantastical settings(or with fantastical characters), then this is the show for you.

The contents of a deranged mind.

 Post subject: Re: Otome Youkai Zakuro - Prepare to be Bewitched!
PostPosted: February 23rd, 2011, 4:42 pm 
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Joined: May 13th, 2007, 7:57 am
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Location: Trier, Germany
I'm not sure whether I'd be able to warm up to this...


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