Posted by psgels on 20 June 2008 with categories: Anime Reviews, Kurenai


Kurenai is quite possibly the most solid of the series that came out during the past spring season. It’s a well-written series. If you liked True Tears and want to see how it would have been with a bit less romance and a bit more action, then it’s likely that you’ll like Kurenai. This series is not going to hit any heights, but it’s perfect for a quick watch.

Aside from the solid writing, Kurenai has another thing it can boast about: its voice-acting. It joins Mahou Shoujotai and Red Garden in the very short list of series that have their voices recorded before the animation-process. The result is that the voice-actors are less restrained, and have more freedom in portraying their characters, which leads to a number of excellent dialogues, with the highlight being episode six.

Unfortunately, because the writing is so solid, the inconsistencies tend to stick out like a sore thumb. There are two or three points in this series that make you wonder what the creators have been smoking, because they don’t make any sense at all in the light of the involved characters, especially around the second half of this series.

With Brains Base, you can of course expect gorgeously animated fight-scenes, and indeed, whenever characters start fighting, the animation shines. Overall, Kurenai is probably too short for the story to make any real impact, but it’s got a likable cast of characters, great dialogue, excellent animation and terrific voice-acting.

7 Responses

  1. Ivy says:

    Why would anyone want to watch True Tears with less romance and more action? Apparently the romance was the main draw. Oh and Kurenai is one of the most memorable one-season shows, after Sola and Elfen Lied of course.

  2. Cyn says:

    I loved this series and is so far the best series I’ve watched this year. What really pulled me into it was the way the music just flows with the story and I don’t know how to explain but left me emotional every episode, weather it be a bitter sweet moment or just hilarious, and sad impact. Well yea to sum it up the BGM just went really well with the scenes

  3. Pegah says:

    Completely agree with cyn about the music. And i must say, this was the sweetest show i’ve ever seen.

  4. This is certainly by far the best series to have come out of Spring 2008. Definitely intelligent in its approach a certainly a strong contender for best series of 2008. Murasaki is just that great a character.

  5. Solaris says:

    Yes, given there were many contenders for the best spring show, Kurenai, with his above average art, won easily.
    Of course there’s still Kaiba and 20 faces on the run, but not many more interesting series.
    There are many good point in Kurenai. The best was maybe that only one novel was animated, on the choiche of four thus published.
    One season for one novel gave all the time to tell properly a beautiful story and to flesh out great characters.
    But the chars themselves were a bit disappointing at the end.
    Given the bad ending where the heroes won but the child was left in the lion mouth, as I already stated, Murasaki is unbelievable “mature” for her age. But the other chars aren’t that flawless too. Shinkuro is a bit too “emo” for an assassin, and the head of the Kuhnoin family is a weakling… should i continue?
    Ok good art, good music, good voice acting, good package in a few words, but something didn’t seem right to me at the very end. I’d give this serie no more than 70/100

  6. Houlgrave says:

    Lmao. Anyone who compares something as crappy as Sola with a show like Kurenai needs mental help.

    I agreed with most of the points presented in the overall review, but one thing that went unmentioned that I personally thought was that Shinkurou is a step above most male protagonists; kind and naive like usual, but exceptionally ruthless and brutal once he starts fighting. Nor is he undecisive generally, which was a relief. The picture we see of him ends up almost schizophrenic, and I loved that.

    Great review!

  7. Adrastea says:

    I really like the pacing and the how the story progressed. In a way it makes me feel as if it were simply one long movie and not series. I don’t know exactly where that feeling comes from though.

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  • Emma
    (Sunday, Mar 29. 2015 05:18 AM)
    Oh, awesome, dark horse is releasing volume 10 of black lagoon in April, its been nearly five years since the last complete volume…
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Mar 29. 2015 03:56 AM)
    @Aidan: I think theres something seriously wrong when theres the actually possibility of there being a good PA works anime but we all have our opinions =P
  • AidanAK47
    (Sunday, Mar 29. 2015 03:13 AM)
    @Raggers, I will go into detail when I review it. But I think something is seriously wrong when I get a far more satisfying ending out of shirobako than Death parade.
    Looking forward to writing a review of shirobako too.
  • Raggers
    (Sunday, Mar 29. 2015 02:56 AM)
    @Aidan: it wasn’t bad though. I think it suffered from too high expectations and lack of focus (or overreaching).
  • AidanAK47
    (Sunday, Mar 29. 2015 02:29 AM)
    Well. Death parades ending was quite underwhelming.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Mar 28. 2015 11:21 PM)
    Waiting between releases for this will be a good thing, its the sort of manga you pick up and put down, then go back to with breaks in between.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Mar 28. 2015 11:13 PM)
    13 volumes into dorohedero, I’ve found it good enough to buy now that I’ve caught up with the official English releases. While the plot meaders and is kind of messy, isn’t up to much, I love how crazy the gory action is, the gritty artstyle/world and the black comedy more than well make up for it. It works best when focused on those masked gangster magician guys and also the main character, the others are only alright.
  • Raggers
    (Saturday, Mar 28. 2015 02:19 AM)
    @Aidan: true, but I don’t think the level is anywhere close to a true shounen. And once the basic rules are established it’s strategising and straight out fighting.
    I’d be more inclined to call it seinen with shounen elements than actually shounen.
  • Emma
    (Friday, Mar 27. 2015 09:59 PM)
    Good all action finale to cap off Garo there, went out with a bang, though thing is I have no idea where their going to go with this when the movie, second season comes along, this seems like a pretty good point to finish.
  • Emma
    (Friday, Mar 27. 2015 05:35 PM)
    I think that just about all the manga serialized in ultra jump feel less seinen than those serialized in other seinen magazines.

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