Monday, March 19, 2012

[Ended] Nisemonogatari: Still Intriguing

To be honest, I really wasn't impressed by this sequel of the highly acclaimed Bakemonogatari series. While everything is still typical SHAFT style, it seemed they pushed the envelope on ecchi content a bit too much. Every corner it turns, they tried to stuff more ecchi scenes. It was amusing in the beginning, but half way through the series, when they keep doing the same thing over and over again, you'd stop and say, "seriously? again?" While the story is indeed very clever, this excessive ecchi'ness in my opinion serves as more of a distraction than anything else. I think at some point people at studio SHAFT need to pull back a bit on their greediness and get a bit more realistic on what they're trying to do.

Aside from that, however, I would say the series average. I'd probably give it an over "B" grade, that is until I watched the final episode. That episode, in my opinion, was enough to propel it to an "A" grade anime. But I think it has more to do with how the story wrapped up rather than the episode quality itself. It actually managed to fill all pretty much all the blanks of the story, (except for the part about what's going on between Hanekawa and Senjougahara, which I think we'll probably see in its OVA release, just like Bakemonogatari) and explained in depth the meaning of its title. (p.s. while it's not really necessary, I think a little understanding of kanji would help out quite some in the last episode when they explained the word "Nise" in the title, the philosophy in my opinion part of what made this final episode so good).

Final scoreboard:

Drama: 94 (Intriguing)
Comedy: 90 (Amusing)
Action: 90 (SHAFT style)
Art/Animation: 88 (Overly ecchi but interesting)
Sound/Music: 90 (Very good)
Character: 92 (The sisters)
Plot: 92 (Final episode makes it)
Ending: 96 (Great finish)

Re-watch value: 80 (Would be interesting to catch more details)

Overall: 91 - Not as great as Bake, but still very good

Recommendation: All in all, Nisemonogatari inherited most good things that Bakemonogatari brought to the world of anime. While the overly excessive ecchi content was a bit more disruptive to the plot flow than I would like, you would slowly get used to it after a couple of episodes. As of now, I haven't met anybody who watched and didn't like Bakemonogatari, but I wouldn't deny the possibility of existence of such people. So unless you are among those few individuals, you should be able to thoroughly enjoy Nisemonogatari, given you've already seen Bakemonogatari and a little excessive ecchi'ness doesn't bother you too much.

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