Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Breaking the Ice

Alright, coming up with an anime to review was a huge pain in the ass. I thouhgt maybe id do FLCL, then realized that would be a short review, FLCL fucking epic, 'nough said. Then i thought maybe id do a review for something like one of the big3, that went out in a bloody pirate dopple ganger sword fight in a orange jump suit. Maybe, i thought, ill do it on something random that i think no ones ever seen. After scrolling through (insert name of thing you worship here) only knows how many pages of anime titles and seeing nothing that looked interesting, i realized i should just do it on some anime i remember watching on adult swim.

Tactics is an upbeat supernatural suspense mystery with a hint of comdey thrown in, anime that provides a nice break from the miserable, downtroddin, death, woe filled animes that usually get the supernatural suspense tag. So anyway our 6th sense gifted writer lead character, Kantaro, journeys all over Japan exorcising demons with his pals, Haruka, the strongest orge eating goblin, Yohko, the begrudging fox spirit forced to serve Kantaro, and the little naive Suzu. And all the other characters that come and go through out the series.

All those negatives aside i enjoyed this quirky little shoujo-ish anime. Almost all the characters are interesting on some level and many are multi-dimensional in their characteristics. Which is important because the whole series is driven by mini character arcs and a lot of focus is put on them. But the down side to this is theres very little depth to these mini-arcs and leaves you wanting a little more. The key characters are pretty simple on the surface, filling their roles well; Yohko is the pretty girl who wants to live a pampered life, Suzu only follows the group around so she can be with Haruka, and Sugino, the weird white goblin, and his wife, Muu-chan (a strange green thing that looks like Ty got high and decided to make something while in that state). Kantaro is just like Sora. Hes one of those overly nice do-gooders that at some points you just want to crawl through the screen and smack some sense into him, but he plays a good counter balance for the always brooding Hakaru.

Yes, theres a shoujo element in there. But dont worry its not one of those crazy "younger guy + older guy + attraction = creepy, awkward character dynamics" sort thing. Kantaro does feel an attraction towards his goblin friend but only hints at it subliminally and Haruka recieves these with blatant disreguard or disinterest.

The art used for the scenery is well done. Its more like watching a scrolling painting of a beautiful field or sundappled forest floor or even a moonlit landscape of night. This is all well and good but the character art just seems tp pale in comparison. They are sharply defined and seem somewhat out of place surrounded by the scenery. Any how thats an acceptable fault as theres very little to no action and the series isnt really about the action. The only real action we get is in the fight squence at the end of each episode (which is kinda like watching the exorcist if the priest had buddist beads, chanted montras and his help shot red lightning out of a golden stick thingy). These "fights" never last long as the focus of the episodes seems to be introducing the characters and the conflict.

The opening and closing themes are good, in my opinion and the opening is very appropriate for the series. Its a song about searching for a secret world, now doesnt that sound like the perfect kinda thing for this series? The music in the show itself is a little bland i think, but hey who really ever pays enough attention to realize what kinda backgorund music is playing.

P.S. If theres a yaoi booth at anime boston ill be doing a report on it. but im a guy who enjoys the dying screams of babies and the visual thoughts of bathing in womens tears (not really) so i have no clue what to report on it. So if the readers could be so kind as to put what you want to know in a comment, id really appreciate that.

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