Posted by psgels on 14 June 2010 with categories: Anime Reviews

I really like what Toei has been doing lately. They took three kids genres that had gotten really stale lately: children’s horror, science anime and mahou shoujo, and successfully managed to breathe new life into them with Kaidan Restaurant, Marie&Gali and Heartcatch Precure. Out of those three, Kaidan Restaurant is obviously the inferior, but if you like kids’ shows then this series will offer some unique charms.

And I must say that it was based on quite a good idea for its basic premise. From the outside, it may look like yet another show about a group of kids who really angered the gods badly, and run into a bunch of ghosts in every episode, but that wouldn’t quite do justice to what this show really is about: it’s a collection of horror stories, sometimes from all over the world, told through the perspective of the lead characters.

Basically, nearly every episodes consists out of two to three quick horror stories, delivered in bite-sized chunks. The stories are short, a tad repetitive, and not that well animated, but at the same time they’re quite well told. In just ten minutes, the creators nearly always succeed in building up a creepy atmosphere, despite the short length. The stories are well paced, correctly introduced and often not as straight-forward as one may think. The series is based on a series of award-winning children’s books, and that really shines through in the adaptation, despite the presence of any sort of big budget. It’s THE sign that you can tell a great story on a short animation budget. And heck, during its airtime this series consistently hit the top 10 of Japan’s viewing rates.

the stories are very repetitive, that’s true. But they all do what they intend to go: provide quick bite-sized chunks of horror. The series is specifically set up in a restaurant format, with meals consisting out of an appetizer, main course and desert, which proved to be quite an interesting metaphor for the series to work with. I also quite liked how some stories leave a lot up to the interpretation of the viewers by not outright stating what happened, while others are more straight-forward. In some stories, the ghosts are killed, but there are also plenty of stories in which the ghosts are the winners, or simply leave. That’s another one of the strange things about this series: it’s quite sadistic at times, but it also has its heart-warming moments.

Storytelling: 9/10 – Is actually quite effective in its horror storytelling. Consistently creates a pretty tense atmosphere for stories that only take up 10 minutes.
Characters: 7/10 – Points for the idea, but the main characters remain mere shells because of how they’re meant to represent a different person for most of the episodes. The characterization of the persons in these individual stories is quite good, though.
Production-Values: 7/10 – This is a bit of an ugly series. The animation budget is full of errors, and very basic. It does what it need to do, but nothing more.
Setting: 8/10 – Repetitive, but imaginative. The setting has a lot more charm than all those cheaply made kids’ shows that treat children like idiots.

Gakkou no Kaidan
Telepathy Shoujo Ran
Aoi Blink

4 Responses

  1. Avatar c160 says:

    So sad its ending,its one of the shows that I still look forward too every week(along with Heartcatch).One of the more entertaining shows lately,and really nicely done for a kids’ show.But I thought it would be longer than just 22 episodes(or rather,I WANT it to be longer than22 episode)..

  2. Avatar ars says:

    I’m guessing this was an accident, but I’m pretty sure that 4th image is from Kaichou Wa Maid-Sama.

  3. psgels psgels says:

    ars: um, yes, it was. I’m not sure how that one slipped by…

    Fixed now.

  4. Avatar lilyan says:

    theres now a petition to have the anime dubed

Leave a Reply

Star Crossed Anime Blog

10 User(s) Online Join Server

Featured Posts

One Punch Man Season 2 – 10 [The Encirciling Net of Justice] Welcome one and all to a rather surprising week of One Punch Man Season 2! This week the animation was mostly fine, and interesting things happened, so let’s just jump right in! Starting off, I rail against the series a lot, but credit where it’s due. The sections of the Garou fight done by […]

Dororo – 23 [The Story of the Demons]

Welcome one and all to the penultimate episode of Dororo. We have brutality, we have drama, and we have a boatload of philosophy. Its everyone Game of Thrones Season 8 said it would be, but wasn’t. Is it too late to make that joke? Regardless, this was a good week for Dororo, so let’s jump […]

Mix – 11 [Try Pitching]

Good news for all you Mix fans out there: the show is likely to be two cour, as the Wikipedia page for its timeslot doesn’t have a replacement listed until October. That means three more months of baseball, romance, and mystifying Japanese puns before Hero Academia S4 kicks Mix off the air for the fall […]

Kimetsu no Yaiba – 11 [Tsuzumi Mansion]

Welcome to another episode of Kimetsu no Yaiba! This week we finally meet the rest of our leading group, find a new Demon and deal with some… odd tonal issues. Lets dive in! Starting off, Zenitsu. I have to say, whatever Yaiba is planning with him, so far I am not impressed. The man was […]

Fruits Basket (2019) – 11 [A Really Wonderful Hot Spring]

Fruits Basket gets a bit better this week, though not by a wide margin. This week is a return of Momiji, the most childish character we’ve seen so far in this show (until we learn that he’ll reach high school next year). The White Valentine approaches, and he wants to bring Tohru to the onsen […]

Sarazanmai – 10 [I Want to Connect, but I Can’t]

The body count keeps rising up in the final stretch of Sarazanmai. With this episode we get to the end of Reo and Mabu’s pair, and it’s certainly a bittersweet experience. As it turns out, we eventually learn that Mabu sacrifices his “desire” to Reo in order to physically stays behind him. So it’s Reo […]

Carole & Tuesday – 10 [River Deep, Mountain High]

“Do the gravity bounce?” Once again it’s GGK’s performance becomes my favorite of this week, and Angela’s style still is too mainstream for my taste. With the pacing of this episode I am more certain that this Brightest Mars competition is gonna take up the first half of the series. Things don’t look good for […]

Serial Experiments Lain – 7 [Society] – Throwback Thursday

Hello all and welcome to another episode of Serial Experiments Lain! Apologies for the lateness and brevity on this one, was/am feeling rather sick as this week wrapped up. Oddly enough, the addled state of mind may have helped me understand Lain better. As this week we get a lot of answers, the Knights become […]

One Punch Man S2 – 9 [The Ultimate Dilemma]

Sigh, it was nice having a free week of no OPM. No disappointment, not falling opinion of an acclaimed manga series. Just free time and no post I had to write. Now we are back though, and JC Staff has once again screwed it up. So join me as this week we talk music. For […]

Latest Reviews

[Star Crossed Anime Exclusive] Code Geass: Lelouch of the Resurrection Review – 80/100

I was lucky enough to be at Sakura-con in Seattle on 20 April 2019 for the Funimation’s movie premiere of Code Geass’ third movie with the Director himself, Gorō Taniguchi, along with his senior staff in attendance inside a room full of raving fans. Was it was worth the decade-long wait to have a worthy […]

Paranoia Agent Anime Review – 67/100

In an era of the mundane, where every series is the same moe blob, the weird sticks out. Even the most mediocre series can get attention just by being weird. Paranoia Agent is not mediocre, and it is far beyond simply “weird”. Written and Directed by Satoshi Kon, Paranoia Agent is one of his last […]

Boogiepop wa Warawanai (2019) (Winter 2019) Anime Review – 78/100

Just like the titular character, Boogiepop Phantom the series has become some sort of urban legend itself in this medium. Its Light Novels are amongst the first Light Novel ever released, dating back to mid-90s. Moreover, the franchise has endured the test of time, as it inspires anime, live-action adaptations and Boogiepop is a well-known […]

Kouya no Kotobuki Hikoutai (2019 Winter) Anime Review – 77/100

Coming to Kotobuki, there are lots of aspect that catch my attention: it’s from a famed director Tsutomu Mizushima who can turn the most trashable and genre-able concepts into something intriguing; it’s an CG show about air pilots: it has extended aerial combat set-pieces. Watching it till the end, I have to tip my hat […]

Kemurikusa (2019 Winter) Anime Review – 79/100

Kemurikusa is your very definition of an overlooked gem, one that never really gain much discussion anywhere, but one that has a distinctive style from an up-and-coming auteur who has full control of his projects. Coming to Kemurikusa, all the attention it has came from the fact that it is created by TATSUKI, a mastermind […]

Mob Psycho 100 S2 Anime Review – 87/100

Upon finishing this series, the only question on my mind was how many animators did Bones sacrifice on ONE’s altar to achieve this. Following their prior season, Mob Psycho 100 Season 2 continues Bones adaptation of webcomic and manga author ONE’s 4th work, Mob Psycho 100. ONE has also authored the critically acclaimed One Punch […]

Kaguya-sama wa Kokurasetai Review – 84/100

Anime draws on many different media types in its endless search for properties to adapt, but manga is still the king of the bunch. And why not? It’s a distinctly Japanese art form, their main demographics have significant overlap, and manga’s panel-based layout means that some of the anime staff’s work is already done. Plenty […]

Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteiru Anime Review – 93/100

Recently, sports anime have become a bit of a dying breed. Falling into the same hole as Mecha, aside from a passionate base audience, most are overlooked. There are the occasional hits like Haikyuu, Yuri on Ice, or Darling in the Franxx for Mecha, but those are few and far between, often taking years. Even […]

A quick and dirty review of Garo: Vanishing Line

What it claims to be about: A secret order of knights and alchemists, the Makai Knights and Alchemists, fight horrifying creatures called Hollows who prey on human weakness .Part of the media franchise spanning anime and live action shows, this iteration is set in modern metropolis and concerns the attempts of Sword, the strongest Makai […]