So, I’ve had this series in my backlog for a bit, my usual routine of trying to find something to watch for the weekend had failed me. So I just decided to pick a random page from my want to watch list on Anime-Planet and then see what was available through VRV. This is usually my back up method for finding something to watch and it hasn’t failed me yet!
Initially, I didn’t know what to expect from this series, I had looked at the tags on AP and it ticked the right boxes for what usually interests me, and I have to say, it delivered. So with that, let’s dive in and look at what makes this series so good. This will be on the long side and will have minor spoilers, you’ve been warned.
The story itself follows a group of friends and their adventure to learn the mysteries of the world around them. With pacing that is on the slower side, it maintains a steady pace with the story, progressing through as we follow the group of kids into adulthood. The mysteries and deception are what really make the story shine, planting little lies that are told to the kids as they grow up. While they know deep down that the elders are hiding the truth from them, they set out determined to uncover why things are the way they are. As the story progresses and they discover more about the world around them and how it came to be the way that it is, they are met with many hardships that test them in more ways then they could have imagined. The more knowledge they gain, the more difficult things become for them, and the darker the world around them gets, a few of them begin to question if they should continue, while others are determined to see it through to the end. As time passes and they get older, their relationships with one another also develop, either becoming closer friends or something deeper than friends. Their connections grow and the events that take place after they reach their teenage years, begin to test them again, with feelings of betrayal, the fear of death, and the burden of the truth weighing on them, they manage to continue to push on toward their goal. As things continue to unfold and more is learned, we are taken along the twists and turns of the mystery of this world and what happened. With plenty of Drama, Mystery, and some moments of sadness throughout the story, we are given a very compelling story that really leaves you thinking even after the credits roll. With the advantage of having 25 episodes to work with, they were able to flesh out a story with a detailed world that wasn’t afraid to ask deep questions about modern-day society and show the emotions of the characters as they matured.
With an initial air date of Fall 2012, this may not hold up as well for everyone, but personally, I think it still holds up really well. The series has a mostly unique design style, with a lot of the scenes being a bit dark, the overall feel of the animation matched the tone of the series. Using a darker pallet for character and background designs, the characters still stand out from their surroundings. The animation is fluid enough for the time it came out, while maybe not being the strongest part of the series, it certainly doesn’t take anything away from it either. The series definitely has some very pretty and detailed animation and doesn’t distract from the story being told.
Now on to one of my favorite aspects of the series, the amazing soundtrack that really helped convey the darker nature of some of the moments throughout the series. Composed by Shigeo Komori, his portfolio isn’t very extensive, but it doesn’t need to be. This is up there for one of my favorite soundtracks. Each track amplified the weight and emotion of each scene, as well as making the more sensitive scenes all the more memorable. It never felt out of place or repetitive, and fit each scene beautifully. Some of the songs on their own are very moving and leave an impactful feeling as you listen to them. They set the tone so well for the series that I don’t feel it could have been done any better. The soundtrack alone is well worth listening to just for how emotionally driven it is.
This series left a very lasting impression on me, I love series that keep you guessing and thinking even after they’re over. I don’t come across series like this very often, so anytime I do, I’m overjoyed. Everything from the mysteries and deception, the supernatural elements, the soundtrack, and the setting were so well executed, that I immediately started recommending it to friends. And I’ll be doing the same thing with this review. Now if you’re not a fan of slower-paced series that focus on deep story rather than action and fight scenes, this series obviously won’t appeal to you. This is not a series that the 4 episode rule applies to, this is one that needs to be watched all the way through to be appreciated, and after watching this series, I can absolutely recommend it. It is well worth the 25 episode length and makes good use of that.
Thanks for reading and look forward to more reviews in the near future!