Do I have to put copies of reviews here or I'll put it directly to the review section?
anyway..here are the two that i've done so far.Initial D
They say a good packaging is one important factor for a product to be sold. This is obviously what Initial D lack.
How would a dull main character, provincial setting and a car racing sounds like? Sounds unfitting, right? That was precisely what I’m thinking before I watch the Initial D.
It started when street racers called the Red Suns, a team from Mt. Akagi, come to challenge Mt. Akina's local Speed Stars team to a "friendly" race. But after seeing how skilled and knowing the “epic stories” of this team’s success, they are now afraid. It looks like they don’t even have the skills to even had a decent match against them .But as they say, when it rains it pours because another problem arise. The team leader and primary downhill driver Iketani had an accident while having his practice. Now really desperate, they resort to the “ghost of Akina” for help. The ghost was actually none other than Takumi delivering tofu to the local Tofu store. That part was really a classic. It might be a worn out plot but still effective. It was then that Takumi’s world turn upside down.
The story focuses on the racing competitions. It can be noted that characters, although still studying, don’t have interest in school. This is one of few sports type anime that the competitions happen “outside the school premises”.
For starters, I would advise that before watching the entire series, you must have a brief background of the show or at least about cars in particular. Too much technical terms that only enthusiast and professionals would understand. It was like putting an accountant in a nursing examination. It would raise a lot of question. It was actually one of the reasons that Initial D is not that popular. It limits the audience. It was an anime that dedicated to particular group of people. I remember the first time I’ve seen it. Since I’m also a novice, the term used was never heard. After a few episodes it made me realized that I really need to research if I want to understand the “whats” that were roaming in my mind. Not that you would not understand the story. The story was quite simple. What you want to know is what they are talking about. What is ’86,’85 and drifting.
The story, save by the “night events” is dull and boring. It was the usual stuff like working and studying. There is really no exciting part that worth remembering aside from the “on the edge” drifting competitions. But it was really worth the wait. It makes viewer wish that it was already nightfall.
The competitions are really adrenaline rush type. Highlights would be Keisuke versus Takumi and Ryosuke versus Takumi‘s battle. This series show us some of the most dangerous possible style a race can be done. The dangerous Duct Tape Deathmatch and the nerve wrecking wet weather race are some of those. That’s why it’s a big NO NO for youngster without an older person’s supervision.
Are you looking for romance? I would refer you to other anime. Romance supposed to make someone giddy right? The common girl do the first move kind of story enhance by not greatly drawn characters makes the love story cliché and unremarkable. An epic failure. What I find cool is the upcoming conflict that it left behind. Who is the mysterious Papa? What would be his role in the “love story” between Takumi and “Natsuki Mogi”.
This department is a big factor that makes the show exciting. Having low quality drawing and generic character would not be a problem when you’re watching a race. The timing of effects and background music really gives a heart palpitation! Although not that refined, which can be accounted to the fact that this is a 90’s anime, it was still awesome.
The opening and ending songs used was obviously 90s. It was the typical danceable songs that although might be tag as old school, really blend to the entire series. It would give a so- Initial D like feeling. For a person who was used in typical shounen sound songs this is something “NEW” and a “BREAK”. But be careful, it might be mistaken as your parents’ favorite disco song. The songs seems to capture the older audience that the younger ones.
The poor drawing of characters is an obvious reality. It was made so generic and unappealing. The graphics are below average. If you think Slum Dunk is “old school” enough what would you call Initial D? Takumi was drawn ordinarily. Some characters look like him. The “X factor” that a main character usually had is missing. Leaving the drawing of characters behind, I think other area is good enough. Although it was not remarkable, the clothes they wore are an okay. You would not expect outrageous one in that kind of place. IT gives a glimpse of Japan’s fashion during that time. What I like best is the realistic drawing of the cars. You really wouldn’t mind the poorly drawn characters if you’re watching a race. There is no outrageous trick unless you would include Takumi’s amazing drifting. The setting is so provincial like. The people got a simple lifestyle. It was place where everyone knows each other. Initial D effectively made it realistic. Realistic enough that it sounds dull and boring until the nightfall comes.
Watching sports type anime seems to leave traces on my mind. I still remember Hanamichi Sakuragi’s shallowness as well as Echizen Ryoma’s cockiness. This is obviously missing in Initial D. If not frequently watch, you might interchange them. They are unremarkable and forgettable. Even the main character Takumi is unappealing. His personality is blurred. In fact, at first you would not even notice that he was actually the main character. But in fairness to the main guy, he got a little improvement as the story goes. Behind the dull and boring character was stubbornness. It seems that he hate being told of what he must do.
I would give a little credit to Keisuke and Ryosuke. They seem to be the only interesting characters of the show. Although quite affected by the poor drawing, their personality is quite noticeable and enigmatic. Another interesting character is Takumi’s love interest Mogi. It looks like she still had a lot to show us. She might look ordinary at first but it seems that she is quite a mystery.
This is a sports type anime minus the formal school related tournament that is so typical in this genre. The market is quite obvious. It might not be the most popular on its genre but the blending of elements is good. This is recommended not only for car racing enthusiast but to all sports type anime fan. Not greatly drawn but so what? It’s the classic substance over form. It’s not the latest in its genre so don’t expect the unexpected. But it’s a must watch that should not be missed.
Ouran High Host Club
Aren’t you wondering where can you find young gentlemen who got too much time on their hands and young ladies who also got too much time on their hands? You might find them in the Ouran High Host Club!
The concept of a host club is unpopular in an unadulterated theme mangas and animes since it denotes a negative implication. That’s why it was quite something to look at when I heard that there is one.
This anime had a good start. This is the type that after watching the fist episode you’ll be encourage watching more.
The story seems to be an everyday life as a host with a twist that save by the humor, sometimes do not make sense at all. The first part is noted for shallowness of the characters and the redundancy of the episodes. The story becomes interesting when the conflicts arise. The narration of the individual characters story before they join the Host Club is something to watch for.
The main conflict that this anime had is quite unexpected. It’s not unique but unbecoming. There is sudden seriousness. The humor is gone. The story from pastel becomes gray. But good thing it was resolve. The pastel color was recast.
It shows the society in the point of view of the rich and famous. We both see the positive as well as negative side. Despite being rich, they are still humans. They cannot control anything. The story would tell us that despite the “press release” as excessive hobby, the Host Club was actually a sanctuary where members find the “family” that they longed to have.
I watched Ouran High Host Club during the time when “Girls who crossdress” was hot commodity that the idea was not new. What’s new is the idea that all the main guy character actually knows that she’s a girl right after the very first episode.
Although it was a reverse harem and shoujo (yes, you hear it right) type of anime which will give a misleading idea that Haruhi would be the main focus, it was actually Tamaki who was given the emphasis. I personally hate harem type animes but I would make an exception to Ouran High Host Club. Not because I’m a girl but because the lead girl is not the typical flirty girl that I despise to the bone.
The opening “Sakura Kiss” is a lively and energetic song that really compliment the story. As for the ending song, I really don’t see its connection to the story until I’ve seen the very last episode. The background music is excellent. Some of the noticeable moments might be Tamaki playing a classical piano piece in the club room. I personally thought it was just a prop since the Club location was a previous Music Room. Talking about revelations, it was actually a surprise that he can actually play the instrument. It serves as an innuendo of his other side.
The sound effects don’t have noticeable flaws. It was vivid and lively that really match the crazy antics that the characters are currently in. The voice actors did a job well done. I think that was pretty obvious. Although I would give two thumbs up to Tamaki and Kyoya’s seiyuu because their dubbing is really effective. All in all, this department is one of the reasons why the show was save despite the redundancy.
The graphics can be categorized as above average. It might not be the best I’ve seen so far but it certainly harmonized with the festive theme that the series had. Although it was often tag as “bishounens”, they certainly didn’t come up to my standard. I think the right word for them is charismatic. You’ll still be enticed by their antics not really because of their looks. This anime focus more on drawing the characters according to their personalities. Tamaki would give a “prince like” feeling because of his purple eyes and blonde hair in contrast to Kyoya’s “cool and intelligent looks” that was boost by his eyeglasses. Numerous costumes had been used in this anime. Aside from the uniform that seems to be the “standard” costumes can be categorized in to two types: When in Haruhi’s world, they wear casual and when in elite world, they wear formal although there is also the summer attire which become a comical issue since Haruni is a girl and cross dressing gowns wear by the guys when they infiltrate the all girls school who “abduct” Haruhi. I honestly believe that if it’s a school life anime, the uniform must be something that would identify the anime. It’s like their ID. But I got a disappointment in Ouran High. It was not only generic and unremarkable but also unappealing and worth forgetting. There is nothing really remarkable in all the costume they wear although it was quite refreshing and funny once in a while.
Aside from the Host Club’s Headquarters aka The Music Room, which is being arranged in accordance with Tamaki’s preference with indirect influence from Kyoya, settings can also be categorized in to two: Haruhi’s ordinary world and the elite world. The contrast is remarkable, although a bit exaggerated, and realistic. Although not clearly stated, Ouran High Host Club gives a summer atmosphere.
The character distinction is remarkable. Each personality shines. Right after watching the very first episode, you’ll know who’s who. I honestly believe, at first, that characterization was the strength of this anime. But while watching, I had second thoughts. Although it was presented with humor and crazy antics the yaoi feeling (boy love) cannot be disregarded. The twin’s “forbidden love” for each, the unusual protectiveness of Mori towards Hani and the family role playing of Tamaki and Kyoya might be adorable and cute for female viewers but something that male viewers would not like. It was actually what divides and limits the audience. But beneath that comic boy love are deeper characters. If you really watch it ‘till the end, you would not say that the Host Club members are gay. They are, in fact, men with principle.
Considered as a shoujo anime, the character that really stands out was Tamaki. How can an airhead guy seem to be the leader of this bunch of “stubborn fellows”? I really find it weird and unbecoming. It was quite obvious that Kyoya was the potential leader of the troupe. It was then that I realize that Tamaki was actually heart of the club. In spite the shallowness that he shows, without him, there will be no host club.
In fairness to Haruhi, she was quite a trend. She’s not the usual damsel in distress type. She’s independent and sensible. In fact, her trademark “sarcasm” can be associated to the fact that she’s really sensible and realist.
Character development was noted to Tamaki, Kyoya and Hikaru. The main girl of the story got her development at the last few episodes. The last thing you would expect is troupe of feminist. But yes, Ouran High Host Club also had an encounter with them. It will give you a glimpse of yuri (girl love) world.
The deficiency in one category is being supplied by the other area. The overall result is good if not better. The redundancy of some episodes is compensated by humor and crazy antics. The drawing that is not greatly drawn is being compensated by lively expression and by effective seiyuus.
The market is obviously female: 90% female and 10% male. Male viewers must not be discouraged. It might give a gayish felling but it was actually give some pointers of how to court a girl. In fact, it was noted that almost all the Host Club members had an innuendo courtship towards Haruhi.
Want a glimpse of the elite society? This is a must watch. Are you bored and looking for someone to entertain you? Why not visit the Ouran High Host Club and Take-Your-Pick.