Posted by psgels on 19 September 2010 with categories: Anime Reviews, Uragiri wa Boku no Namae wo Shitteiru




Uragiri wa Boku no Namae wo Shitteiru (henceforth abbreviated as Uragiri) is a series that doesn’t start out as anything special. Its first ten episodes don’t really stand out aside from a few well written action scenes and overly campy dialogues. Still, it managed to pull itself together as a solid character-study in the end.

Uragiri is restrained, but it knows what it’s doing in terms of characters. Their development throughout the second half is well worth the wait, especially because the creators know how to use it in its action and exposition scenes. This goes for both the main and side characters, who manage to grow together into a neatly packaged whole.

There really is hardly a boring moment in the second half because of this. The entire series has this slow atmosphere, but the series never drags on: it is always exploring its characters, showing new things about them and fully detailing their worries, motivations, and the bonds they have with each other.

The action scenes get surprisingly badass as time goes on thanks to their excellent scenario, the unique visuals for this series (this show is especially good at blending in CG effects with 2D animation in order to give the whole series a very gothy feeling) and a soundtrack that on top of being excellently used, also only continues to get better and better as the series goes on.

Now, this series is technically based on a shounen ai story. To the people who are scared of gays: don’t worry, this show is nowhere near yaoi, and the gay undertones never end up taking over the show. Having said that, though, this series does have an array of very campy characters, ranging from the very eccentric dress sense that the demons in this series have, how underdeveloped the villains are compared to the lead characters and there is matter that the lead character Yuki may be a tad too much of a heaven-descended flower-child at times. There is of course being nice, but there are points in which the creators play a bit too much on his good-natured character.

This series however still has an excellent sense of build up (except for the ending; don’t ask me why, but somehow this show ends with a Deus ex Machina without resolving anything while preparing for a second season that is never going to come) and it skillfully builds its characters throughout its 24-episode run. It’s a very nice example of those series that start off without much of a fuss, but actually get pretty damn awesome near the end (emphasis on near!).

Storytelling: 8/10 – Starts off unimpressive, but gets much better as time goes on. Well balanced, a solid script and knows how to build up save for the ending.
Characters: 8/10 – A solid cast: well analyzed and developed. The bonds between them are very important in this series, and quite a bit of meaning has been put into them.
Production-Values: 9/10 – The character animation may not be much special and the characters-designs may be a bit too bishiefied, but the background art and CG are utterly gorgeous, and the soundtrack is really excellent.
Setting: 8/10 – Does what it needs to do, there are interesting concepts behind the setting and it forms a solid base for the characters to work with.

Suggestions:
– Shingetsutan Tsukihime
Night Head Genesis
Kobato

3 Responses

  1. LR says:

    After having read what you wrote, it makes me pessimistic about watching the final episode later on! You seemed pretty sure that there isn’t going to be a second season – which on second thoughts I suppose is a relatively good decision too because judging from the original manga, there isn’t enough material for a second season. I love this series too much to see it deviate from the original story that Odagiri-sensei intended.

    To me, one of the more memorable things about the Uraboku anime is its background art and CG. Quite often, I find myself admiring the sky, trees, landscape, furniture texture, marble flooring and I could ramble on but you get the idea… Even the cars behave (changing directions, when someone gets on or off, blinking signal lights) similar to reality. In particular, lighting effects were used very effectively to set the mood of the various scene. These factors greatly complement the storytelling and of course, not forgetting the excellent soundtrack as well. And I think the voice actors did a pretty good job in relating the feelings of the characters too. I especially adore the voice of Cadenza – gives me the shivers, haha!

    The Uraboku world is a beautiful but naive world setup. Yuki is too gentle! Reiga and his Opasts aren’t badass enough! The Giou clan’s kekkai ability is too convenient for cleaning up the scene! Nevertheless, slowly drink in the interactions amongst the various characters and their developments. You won’t be disappointed. =)

  2. LR says:

    And thank you, psgels, for your consistent weekly Uraboku posts! I always look forward to your updates. Helps to quench the burning curiosity before I get to sit down and enjoy the episode.

  3. Hathor says:

    “Yuki may be a tad too much of a heaven-descended flower-child at times. There is of course being nice, but there are points in which the creators play a bit too much on his good-natured character.”

    Thank goodness, I am not the only one who thinks so. >.>

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  • Bam
    (Monday, May 25. 2015 05:54 AM)
    The episode was alright and felt dense as I watched it, but in hindsight only really moved the plot forward incrementally. Lancer not untying Tohsaka as soon as he killed Kirei and then not killing Shinji when he clearly had the chance left a bad taste in my mouth. That and Shirou’s heavy plot armor at this point is becoming reminiscent of another famous anime dual-wielder. Not a compliment.
  • Bam
    (Monday, May 25. 2015 05:46 AM)
    UBW 20 felt like another rendition of Eva 26 (Take care of yourself), complete with character analysis, battle with one’s Jungian Shadow, and loosely Buddhist ideas of self-actualization. It even featured the repetitive monologue shots that fade to black (with “I saw Hell” instead of Rei’s “Sky. Red, red sky”). It never went as far as Eva with “which way is up?” type of Soliloquy, but that’s probably a good thing.
  • 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.

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