Posted by psgels on 20 September 2010 with categories: Anime Reviews




I don’t always like Shoji Kawamori’s series. My impressions of the series and concepts he comes up with range from preachy (Arjuna), disappointing (Macross Frontier), absolutely fantastic (Excaflowne), solid (Macross), gorgeous (the Macross OVAs and Movies) to ridiculously unbalanced but fun (Basquash). Still, I have to admit: this guy is creative, and to this day he is consistently coming up with original premises, rather than series based off of some manga, light novel or game. My personal guess as to why all those series are so completely different from each other is the rest of the staff behind it, who seem to get quite a bit of freedom (something a certain Shaft director could learn from). His next concept is Kiruminzoo, a series again completely different from anything that he tied his name to so far.

Now, I like kids’ shows. The good ones, in any case. There are unfortunately still too many badly produced ones that make cheaply made harem shows look like the combined works of Shakespeare. Kiruminzoo impressed me in this, though. It’s perhaps not as good as Heartcatch Precure, but it really has its heart at the right place. If I had kids and this show somehow made it over to the Netherlands, I really wouldn’t mind showing it to them.

Kiruminzoo isn’t simply trying to entertain, it’s also trying to teach its audience something. It’s all based on a bunch of kids who become able to transform into animals throughout some sort of mahou shoujo devices. The entire reason why they get to be able to do this is to improve understanding of all kinds of animals. This series teaches children about morals, how it’s often more important to understand rather than to fight, and how to treat animals with respect. It’s a great series for people who love animals.

This series also manages to avoid the “adults are useless”-trope that often plagues the kids’ shows. Most of the adults are nowhere near useless in this series, and most of the problems in this series revolve around issues that children can actually deal with, and it forces them to think. Only with the climax of the series does this show start to become a little epic, and even then it’s handled well. Well, for the most part…

This is a bit of a “love it or hate it”-thing, but this show is full of morons. And with that, I don’t just mean one character, but half the cast seems to only have half a braincell. Granted, the series provides an explanation for this, and on one hand, it’s part of the charms of this series to see the beyond stupid antics of certain characters, without that stupidity taking over the show, but on the other hand the stupidity does get taken a bit too far at times.

The main flaw of this series is that it’s too long, though. It’s an episodic series through which the characters gradually discover and explore their powers to transform to other creators, but the creators could have done this in 39 episodes as well. Right now, there are a number of points in which this series drags on, and there are a number of repetitive episodes that could easily have been cut in order to make it a bit more of a snappy series.

On the technical side, this show is very solid. The animation is very consistent, leading to very little distorted faces, and just about everything in this series is as bright, colourful and cute as possible; it just looks really pretty. The voice acting also is very good, and I especially loved Riko’s voice actress.

Overall, if you don’t like kids’ shows, then this series isn’t going to make you see the light. If you do, though, then this is quite an enjoyable series to watch with a charming cast and premise. Perhaps it’s a bit long, but it certainly doesn’t deserve to remain unsubbed.

Storytelling: 8/10 – Enjoyable, educative, and does justice to the animal kingdom.
Characters: 8/10 – A varied and charming cast.
Production-Values: 8/10 – Solid animation and music, very cute art.
Setting: 8/10 – Teaches kids understanding towards animals. Nothing wrong with that.

Suggestions:
Otogi Juushi Akazukin
Telepathy Shoujo Ran
Aoi Blink

4 Responses

  1. dood says:

    I wish the subbing was a little faster, only on episode 15.
    The show is quite entertaining.

  2. namaiki says:

    >I wish the subbing was a little faster, only on episode 15.
    *namaiki winks
    It’s being worked on. Episodes 16 and 17 should be out soon.

    >I especially loved Riko’s voice actress.
    She especially makes this show hilarious to watch, though sometimes she talks really fast.

    Random: Just had a look. I never realized that Rimu’s voice actress also played Ritsu in K-ON!!
    Also, I looove how Riko’s forelock is a heart, no matter how angry she is.

  3. Firechick says:

    Wasurenai has subbed the entire series of Kiruminzoo!

  4. starlog-akemi says:

    This show came to my country! It was actually pretty entertaining and charming. I knew it as something like Animal detectives (in my language, of course) and decided to look it up…
    anyway, I’m pretty surprised you like it!

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  • Bam
    (Tuesday, May 5. 2015 12:43 AM)
    I enjoyed Vivi’s storyline tho. I think even tho he was bland and quiet he still had the most emotional developments as a character, which tied in to identity and what it means to be alive. I also liked the “I want to be your Canary” play within the game, it was like a fleshed-out version of the Opera House scene from FF6.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, May 5. 2015 12:40 AM)
    Yeah I remember that my brother would watch me play FF9 here and there and I would fill him in on the details, and he came in when I was fighting Necron and said “who the hell is that?” to which I replied “I have no clue. I think it’s the final boss”. I don’t really know why they decided to do that, but probably to give Kuja a last minute redemption. Still, they should’ve just went with a superform Kuja battle instead imo.
  • Emma
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 10:33 PM)
    @Aidan: I can admit that, in regards to the final boss of FF9 at least.
  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 09:33 PM)
    FF9 was Final fantasy goes Dragon Quest. I didn’t like it for the designs and wasn’t into the story at all. Itwas sort of the reason why I didn’t like wind wakers style. The series is good because of it’s more mature feel. Speaking of embarrassing last boss fights FF9 was worse than FF10. With an endboss who literally came straight out of nowhere.
  • Bam
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 09:26 PM)
    @Aidan: yeah, fusing turn-based (or ATB) battles with some real-time elements always intrigued me. That was the only redeeming quality in Legend of Dragoon’s battle system. That recent Child of Light game was a good, albeit basic, homage to those earlier games, and the simple battle system was both fun and nostalgic.
  • Bam
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 09:21 PM)
    @Emma: 9 was a throwback to the earlier ones, and that’s why people ate it up. I did like it tho, even despite the Chibi style which I don’t enjoy. To be frank I liked the series from 7-10 the most. It’s a combination of the games and those specific years of my youth.
  • Emma
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 08:49 PM)
    Though those are opinions which are from my teenaged self back then…
  • Emma
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 08:34 PM)
    That last boss fight in FF10 was embarrassing, then they brought out that silly fanservicey sequel to it. I find FF9 at the time had a good blend of a then modern game but also retro feel, I liked the revelations surrounding garland, Kuja, Zidane and felt that FF9 was where I was the most emotionally involved.
  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 05:37 AM)
    True, assuming of course that the latter installment is indeed better. Resident evil 5 was no 4. That’s for sure.
    I liked that you could time R1 to give you more damage for attacking with Quall. And it was nice that summons leveled up. So that your earlier summons don’t become completely useless in the endgame.
  • Bam
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 03:46 AM)
    I also enjoyed FF8 quite a lot. I appreciate cinematic presentations and 8 delivered that with a lot of style. The visuals were amazing and the the music was great, and if you learned the GF BOOST ability you used the much-maligned long summon animations to stack up on some damage.

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