Love Pentagons (as well as body wash and birdseed) Leave a Bitter Aftertaste, Indeed

Four episodes into true tears and we’re set for drama. Shin’ichiro likes Hitomi, Noe like Shin’ichiro, and Aiko likes Miyakichi (but secretly likes Shin’ichiro), and who knows who else is going to enter the fray, so we might end up with a love heptagon or something (I dare someone to make a diagram if this happens. Make sure it has sides of equal length!). I’m liking it so far. It strikes a good balance between the serious and the silly, and I like the way comical moments (such as brushing one’s teeth with body wash) tie into the overall plot. It’s a changeup from the Key method of inserting humor, where the humor serves as a kind of gimmick to create affection between the viewer and the character. Not that that is a bad thing, necessarily, but it’s good in true tears as this series is only going to be 13 episodes long, and they’ll need all the plot development they can cram into it.

And I think that comparisons with ef – a tale of memories are going to be inevitable on the behalf of other people, but, as with all things, the strengths of each are different. ef was made spectacular via its visual flair and excellent directorial execution. true tears is much more subdued, of course, but it makes up for it by having more engaging characters and a more complex plot. true tears has been much better at four episodes plot-wise than ef was at the same length, although, again, ef had its visual stylings to carry the day. It’ll boil down to taste as to which one individuals decide to like better than the other, although I have the feeling that ef is going to be far more popular than true tears ever will be.

One other thing to mention–the art. It’s so…pretty. NIshimura’s always been about the pretty (well, at least, he was about the pretty in Simoun, less so in Ranma 1/2, but the latter is from the 80s, so…) and it’s nice to see he’s still got a knack for stunningly rendered background visuals. It’s not quite as good as the faux-watercolor backgrounds of Simoun, but pair up the background art with the bold character art and you’ve got yourself a very pretty series indeed. And I like pretty.

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I cannot understand those that take anime seriously, but I can love them, and I do. Out of my love I warn them to keep clear of this blog.

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a ridiculously long and only partially organized list of subjects


January 2008

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