Posted by psgels on 11 March 2009 with categories: Anime Reviews, Sora wo Miageru Shoujo no Hitomi ni Utsuru Sekai



Sora wo Miageru Shoujo no Hitomi ni Utsuru Sekai, otherwise known as the Munto Remake or that show with the incredibly long name. The original Munto was a series of two OVAs that simply couldn’t live up to the huge story that they tried to create. That’s why it was great news that it was going to get a remake TV-version that could give the story the right amount of time that it needed to… and yet this series turned into my single biggest disappointment of the past Winter-Season.

The “remake”-part of the title is incredibly misleading. This series is more like an exact copy of the first two episodes with about an hour and a half of new material pasted at the end. There was so much promise for an excellent series, and yet the creators spent the first six episode blatantly copying and pasting and did hardly anything to fix the original problems of the OVA. But to be fair, I’m going to review this series from the perspective of someone new to the Munto franchise. If you’ve already seen the OVAs, then you can easily subtract 30% from the rating, skip the series and watch the movie that’s going to be released in the future because then this series has nothing new to add.

Well then, Munto tells the story about two worlds: one of them is at war and in huge troubles, and a random girl named Yumemi who lives in the other world has enough powers to save it from destruction. Well, that’s the basic premise anyway. The pacing is very fast and it hardly leaves any moment for the viewer to get bored of the show, and that’s one of the show’s biggest strengths: there’s always something going on.

The problems mostly lie in the incredibly short length of the series. The characters have got so much potential to grow into a memorable cast, but they’re not given the chance because the airtime only consists out of nine episodes. Especially Yumemi’s friends are pretty likable, but a huge part of the cast just isn’t fleshed out and developed enough. The result is that some characters suddenly start acting completely out of character in the final episode.

The same problem is there with the setting: Munto takes place in a huge one, with different countries with different alliances, but we hardly get to know anything about it, even the most important one which is lead by one of the main characters of this series receives hardly any attention at all. Because of this it’s hard to care about what’s going on.

Thankfully this is Kyoto Animation, so there is a lot of eye candy in this series. Especially the first six episodes (the ones copied directly from the OVAs) look awesome, and the new material, while significantly lower in quality, still have lots of nice movement and hardly any still frames. There’s a lot of style in this series, and most of the time it’s a feast for the senses.

But yeah, that doesn’t prevent the flaws from sticking out. The story was meant for 26 episodes; there is no way that you can squeeze it in only nine of them, and the creators indeed screwed up a lot here. Thanks to the addictive storytelling and animation we still have ourselves a pretty decent series here, but it could have been so much better.

Storytelling: 8/10
Characters: 7/10
Production-Values: 9/10
Setting: 6/10

11 Responses

  1. omo says:

    You know there’s going to be a movie that follows up the TV series right?

  2. psgels psgels says:

    Yeah, I know. And I also know that it’s basically going to recap all the new material, so in terms of length it still isn’t going to make a difference.

  3. tekky99 says:

    I had to adjust my expectations half way through the series, or else I would’ve been REALLY disappointed. Yeah the short length really did “kill” the series, but in the end i still enjoyed it.
    I wouldn’t go as far as to say that KyoAni now “sucks” because of this show, nor did it drop my expectations of what KyoAni can produce. I still consider KyoAni to be the best animators of adaptations (Playing the Clannad game actually made me appreciate the anime even more).
    Anyways, great review

  4. shinobs says:

    WHY???
    Making a movie on the same stuff is pointless and a waste of money instead on putting it on making 13 episodes at least… >_

  5. Windspirit says:

    KyoAni is doing THRICE the same shit ?
    Goddamn it, wtf ?

  6. Bane says:

    There was a point to this TV series, right? Right? No, there wasn’t. I was looking forward to post-ep6 stuff, but stopped looking forward once we hit episode 8 and there was suddenly only “1 more to go”. And now a movie will recap the TV series that recapped the previous movies -_-;;; We are so being trolled by KyoAni…

  7. Wyrdwad says:

    I probably wouldn’t watch this series based on its name alone. A more pretentious anime title, I have never heard. (:

    I’m still intrigued by the main characters being named Yumemi and Munto, though. They’re unusual names, yet they JUST HAPPEN to be the names of two main characters from the tongue-in-cheek RPG “Tengai Makyou: The Apocalypse IV”. Yet, they don’t seem to be the same characters, nor does this show have any affiliation with Hudson, Red, or the Tengai Makyou series at all. So why the… homage? If it can even be called an homage…

    -Tom

  8. Denizen says:

    Biggest dissapointment of Winter. In contrast, Ippo is just as good, Birdy is even better, Natsume Yuujin Chou is still the same as ever, and the other shows are living up to their potential.

    As someone who never saw the OVAs, this TV series was good, but i’m not willing to see this series as what it is when its potential was just so huge, and its mere existence just pokes holes in KyoAni’s credibility.

    I don’t think there are any other studios that promise so much, let so much down and are still horrendously overrated, apart from Studio Pierrot.

  9. I find this review to be far to generous. Using your scoring system, here we have a show that has some of the most chaotic pacing I’ve seen in an anime in a long time such that it barely made any sense for the majority of the show so you could easily subtract about 3 points from my storytelling score. The characters weren’t all that developed thanks to the shortness of the series and the size of it’s scope and this unfortunately extends to the mains who all came off as mostly one note in personality and motivation (Munto=Arrogant and determined to save the magical kingdom, Yumemi=Whiny and trying to figure out why she’s different then others. Gass=Cool and self-sacrificing, Gntarl=Machievellian and wantsto get all the Akuto for himself) and with very little depth or development so you can subtract 3 from my score there as well, the animation is okay so you can leave it as is. And as for the setting, the whole magical kingdom concept had the most potential of anything in the show to be interesting and yet they never really bother to flesh it out so I can’t see it getting anything more then a 5/10.

    Tally that up and for me you get something more like a 55/100 using your overall score. Tepid is what I would use to describe Munto TV from a criticial standpoint. However I suppose if you just turn off your brain and look at all the pretty and Yumemi’s ample leg it becomes slightly more enjoyable on a “durrrrrrrrr!” eye candy level.

  10. Zeff says:

    Though I did enjoy the first 2 OVA’s, I have no idea what to think of the ending piece of the TV series. Sure, it looks nice, it sounds nice, and though the plot is a bit shaky, it has a potential. Perfectly good for a first-time-brainchild, right? Apparently not. I agree with 3 main factors, one, it was much, much to short.(What ever happened to a 26 episode run in the first place? Hardly any series use them anymore.) 2, the last episode. Though the ending result wasn’t bad, the entire out-of-character sequence killed me. 3, almost no back story at all. And the “new footage” the movie promises doesn’t seem like it will make anything up. Sheesh, if they wanted to simply make a movie in the end, why did they have to air it? It would have lowered the fans standards, at least, so we wouldn’t get such a big disappointment.

    I’ll probably end up watching the movie with hopes something may happen, but I doubt it. At least it’ll look nice…

  11. Helen says:

    I know you regret blogging this series, but I’m glad you did because I value your critiques. ^_^

    It made me appreciate the anime that I’m keeping track of even more.

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  • 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.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:16 AM)
    Keep in mind mature plot elements are different from graphic violence. A lot of times you are shocked because of sympathy for the circumstances of the characters, not their actual vicarious pain which you feel. As things move away from live-action and become animated the less it looks human the less natural respond it elicits. That’s why a lot of anime have emotional deathbed monologues to help hammer home the point.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:03 AM)
    @Aidan: meh … I think Madoka could’ve also been better if it used a more rigid style. I heard a lot that the moe made it more shocking for some people, I guess I can see that even if I don’t personally feel that away at all. I think Madoka was a good series that brought a wider shonen type of audience to more adult themes, but some of the fan-praise to me is a little halfbaked and unfounded.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 04:49 AM)
    I’m fairly fond of the artstyle sunrise used back in the 90s also.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 04:46 AM)
    Actually with old artstyles in mind, I watched an old ova called california crisis recently, the character design stood out for me, the ova itself is fairly trashy however, more of a guilty pleasure.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 04:31 AM)
    I still don’t like the art in madoka regardless though.
  • AidanAK47
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 04:29 AM)
    “Even if a series which has detailed backgrounds and a sharp dark tone features moe characters the show would be considered lighthearted and Moe, and any violence will come off as forced or even comical.”
    Madoka says otherwise.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 04:24 AM)
    But still even in terms of cutesy looking female characters, I’m still going to pick the old art over the new usually.

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