October 22nd, 2004

azumanga

Finished series: Gilgamesh

Today, we've finished watching Gilgamesh. First episode review is here.
First things first: this series is ugly -- no two ways about it. Character designs are ugly (the designers wanted a 'realistic' style that just doesn't work), and the animation in incredibly cheap. The color palette used is also all drab browns and greys -- I guess that goes with the post-apocalyptic setting.

As I explained in the first episode review, someone called Enkidu triggered something that had been buried deep under the sands of Mesopotamia, creating a magnetic field around the Earth ("Sheltering Sky") rendering all computers useless. Chaos ensued, time passes.
The two main characters, siblings, turn out to be the children of Enkidu. They encounter the disciples of their father, who turn out to be able to morph into monsters. They get 'bought' by a Countess, who was a colleague of their father. They encounter the chairman of the corporation that backed the research conducted in Mesapotamia, and his ambitious succesor. Lots of stuff happens.

However, because this is another manga adaption (it seems like all anime these days is either based on a manga or a H-game), the events pass rather quickly. This also means that the backstory never becomes completely clear -- at the end, there are some things that I still did not understand. But, to the credit of the writers, the motivations of the characters are complex and believable. That is what makes this series interesting.

Good points:
- Complex and believable characters and motivations;
- Rather interesting back-story.
Bad points:
- Ugly as hell;
- Backstory isn't completely explained;
- Ending is not cheerful at all.

I'll give it a 6 -- the ugliness of the series is offset by the rich characterisation, but it isn't enough to raise the series above the level of 'merely OK'.
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