Friday, April 13, 2012

Dantalian no Shoka

As a child, I was quiet the reader. I would read almost anything from mystery, to action, and even the stuff in between. When coming across this anime, I couldn't help but to smile, and feel a warmth spreading over me, because it had to deal with books and mysterious powers, and it was set in one of my favorite times in history: The Victorian Era.

The story for this anime is almost simple: a young man named Hugh Anthony Diswald, living in London when his grandfather dies, and leaves him the estate, along with his massive library. When he arrives at the estate, and goes down to the library, he meets a young girl named Dalian, the black biblioprincess, who is one of the keepers of 906,666 deadly books called the phantom books-books with special powers that enable strange things to happen, such as resurrection, hypnotism, and other strange occurrences. Together, the seek out phantom books to bring about the balance of the world.

The story in mind had premise, but it felt like later on in the anime that nothing truely connected. In the episodes, it seemed that a point could be elaborated upon, but it didn't happen, and the characters by the next episode were relaxing again. The story in each episode sort of got repetitive, due to the fact it was basically start of in house to meet problem character, to investigation "could there be a phantom book," to discovering phantom book, to battling crazy person with phantom book, to crappy end of episode.  True, while I do like episodic anime, this was a bit too serious of an anime to really pull the episodic execution, and thus the biggest failure of this anime.

The characters for this anime were likable, if not a bit dull. Diswald has an interesting back story of being a former army pilot, but they only expand on this at the last minute, and I truly wish they did more with that. Dalian was the token tsundere loli of the series, and just being as much use as just saying "Hey, I sense a phantom book," and she grants access to the library that has all the books to stop the phantom book, and even then, Diswald is responsible mostly for stopping the rampage of the book. The minor characters were very forgettable, and even the ones that they tried to make seem important were still easily forgettable.

The art for this anime was what actually drew me into this anime. It has a serious tone to it, but also has a light-hearted tone to it, which make me happy. In the anime, the art was fluid, and the effects for obtaining the books was interesting. The characters were well designed, though I felt like that the side character designs were repeated,and I had a hard time distinguishing them sometimes.

Overall, despite its flaws, I enjoyed this anime, even  though at the end it seemed to stop making sense. I liked the concept, I just wish that they had gone a bit more in depth with the characters, and perhaps not make it so episodic in nature, and have a bit more character development. Also, this anime was too short and serious to even pull off the episodic execution.

No comments:

Post a Comment