Posted by psgels on 31 March 2007 with categories: Anime Reviews, Otogi Juushi Akazukin


Otogi Juushi Akazukin is a children-aimed fantasy-series which can be fun for every age. It’s deeply rooted in the old European fairytales, with characters such as Little Red Riding Hood, Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, the City-Musicians of Bremen, Rapunzel, Hansel, Gretel and the violinist of Hameln making cameo-appearances. The story is simple, an evil which had been sealed long ago broke free, and needs to be resealed again by our main character: Akazukin. Still, despite this fairly simple concept, I found myself mesmerized by this anime again and again.

For starters, it’s got some of the cutest character-design ever. The animation may range from flawed to good, the character-designs and imaginative background-art more than make up for it. The music also gives a perfect fairy-tale feeling to the whole atmosphere. Thumbs up.

Still, the parts where Otogi Juushi Akazukin shines the most are the characters and the storytelling. The series comes with a set of characters who complement each other perfectly. They start out as one-dimensional characters, but they soon gain lots of depth as the anime continues. Each with his or her own story. Overall, these characters were adorable, as they were featured in both serious, funny and cute moments.

Through the course of the anime, lots of different stories are shown. Even though some side-characters just serve the purpose of fleshing out some of the main characters, they worked out quite well. Still, the best stories were the ones who focused on the group of main characters. Especially after the second half kicks in, the show picks up steam, and some of the episodes were just amazing to watch. Each character got enough time to show his or her background, and near the end, there’s given enough time to close of their stories, some of these stories ending in the most amazing episodes. My personal favourite was the surprisingly sad Randagio-episode.

Any bad points? Well, the ending. Or episodes 36 and 37 to be exactly. After most of the stories have closed, and only the main storyline remains. Through the course of the series, this anime has done well at keeping its level of cheesiness just low enough for it not to be annoying, but these efforts all fail when it goes and uses some of the biggest clichés in the book. Thankfully, the final episode closes off the series well enough, but the fact remains that these episodes left a nasty thorn in an otherwise excellent series.

Excellent as it may be, I can see a lot of people disliking it. Especially people who believe children’s shows are too childish. There’s no denying that the series is childish at times, but for me, that was just part of its charms. If you’re not bothered by the fact that this is a children’s show, then it’s definitely worth it to give this a try, as the characters were just amazing.

5 Responses

  1. Necromancer says:

    I’ve been enjoying Akazukin which is weird when I’m a 24 year old male, lol. Randagio is my fave male and Shirayuki (I’m a sucker for blue haired meganekkos :P) my fave female. I look forward to seeing the last ep being subbed :D

  2. Solaris says:

    “Excellent as it may be, I can see a lot of people disliking it. Especially people who believe children’s shows are too childish”
    Id’like to quote this. I showed Akazukin to a friend who didn’t like it at all because of its childish look.
    Besides that this show is one of the nicest i’ve ever seen, despite it’s a child show.
    I’d like to see rare peearls of a child show like this, instead of the ultra stupid carbage they air for the kids on TV in my country nowadays.

  3. Firechick says:

    For some reason, I stopped watching this when I reached the 5th episode. I think maybe I should watch the rest of it. I finally finished Mokke, so maybe I can find other anime I need to finish. I will admit that the characters are cute as heck!

  4. windy says:

    I don’t know why , since I most of the time enjoy children shows, I can’t make myself to like this one, even if the graphics are exeptionnally well-made, the characters cute, maybe I’ll give it another chance later on, but the first arc hasn’t impressed me at all, one of the reason is that’s too repetitive, and the characters’ fights are childish at the extreme and most of the dialogues seem to fill the scenes that don’t have action in them, then near the end : a fight with some weird creature, the tales have also been put upside down, something I desagree with.

  5. Tan-Tan says:

    It was interesting, but I found the characters too one-dimensional to care anymore. I guess it was only the little red riding hood girl and Blair whom I could appreciate. The main character’s a total wuss that just annoys me.

    I can’t believe you graded this over 90. For a children’s show, it was nice, but its creativity isn’t very engaging for me.

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  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:48 AM)
    Ashura was an excellent example of how to through anime illicit and emotional response in an honest, non-melodramatic way.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:46 AM)
    @Bam: I’d be more than happy to take a look at some of those shorts anytime.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:44 AM)
    @Emma: there’s a lot of European animators that got active in the last 10 years or so that are really reinvigorating their animation scene, and every now and then I get introduced to some fabulous shorts.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:40 AM)
    @Emma: no I don’t really mind gory ‘for the fuck of it’ violence, I even like it in some grindhouse type of works, but I just don’t think it’s always effective as a shock factor. Live-action is the most sympathetic for obvious reasons, but there are animated works that do elicit a deep response. Probably because of circumstances but also the details of the in-between animation, which can induce certain feelings of disgust.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:39 AM)
    *here and there
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:35 AM)
    @Bam: I really wish there was more arthouse anime now to give some kind of a balance to everything thats out these days.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:33 AM)
    Now I like my exploitation every so often, but yes Bam I really do wish that adult and mature storytelling could be better associated with truly, more pure mature themes.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:25 AM)
    I get choked up over Bergmans cries and whisper and Autumn sonata, I look back on a work by Key and Jun Maeda and wonder, think of how silly it looks to me now.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:24 AM)
    I also find it easier to get an emotional response from a honest drama, live action film, largely due to the real people doing the acting. Sometimes you get an actor whose just that good too…
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:22 AM)
    I’ve gotten my odd emotional reaction here from anime and manga but a lot of the time it feels like the jump scare in a generic horror movie, I got shocked but I felt minipulated afterwards it wasn’t genuine, the same goes for some anime/manga drama when it takes a melodramatic turn instead of a bleak, honest one.

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