Posted by psgels on 28 December 2010 with categories: Anime Reviews




Otome Youkai Zakuro was another one of those series that went under the radar this season. And granted, when looking at its premise it seems like a very simple youkai series. However, it’s a series that really shines through its execution and it does a great job combining the youkai genre with the romance one.

It’s the kind of series that perhaps doesn’t do anything new, but what it does it does really well. The three lead couples are all charming, each in their own way and especially Agemaki and Zakuro are two very good main characters who are both more than just romantic stereotypes. The simplicity of this series also allows the creators to put in a lot of detailed character development, and that especially manifests itself in Zakuro’s background, but the entire main cast emerges from this series with some depth.

the only real flaw of this show is its restriction to some cliches, like Zakuro the Tsundere, or a villain who listens to a few overused archetypes. It’s well told though, so despite these cliches it’s really able to put an emotional charge to just about every episode. It’s very consistently told and at the same time the drama is genuine enough to get nowhere near the levels of cheese, thanks to some subtle characterization.

It’s a great recomendation if you’re looking for some light romance. the story itself is well paced and keeps a great balance between the romantic developments between the characters, and the actual story and the growth of their characters. Autumn 2010 had many sleeper hits. This is one of the biggest ones.

Storytelling: 9/10 – Well balanced, treats its cast seriously and can be both very subtle and pack a punch.
Characters: 9/10 – Characters are neatly laid out, the main ones have a lot of depth and backstory, but it’s especially the relationship between them that really well done.
Production-Values: 8/10 – Great artwork throughout the entire series.
Setting: 8/10 – Youkai series aren’t new, but it’s nevertheless a very solid setting for this series.

Suggestions:
Rozen Maiden
Ga-Rei Zero
Natsu no Arashi

8 Responses

  1. Jday says:

    This is the best directed series I’ve seen from Chiaki Kon. Maybe a lighter workload (and backing from good artists/animators) helps?

    Hopefully, this is sign of things to come.

  2. Hogart says:

    I’m surprised you enjoyed it more than the likes of Soredemo and Panty and Stocking (or at least graded it slightly higher). I found it much less entertaining, pretty production values aside.

    To me Zakuro started off relatively appealing (for what it is) but quickly squandered it’s characterization for a pretty cheesy and generic plot that undersold it’s potential. It’s still better than average for it’s genre, though, and certainly holds up well among what’s airing this season.

  3. Nomus says:

    Didn’t expect this will be so good. I think this series must be used as a reference for anyone, making 13 ep show. Because this is how things must be done not to have lot of plot holes, unexplained actions and undeveloped characters. Thank you once again, psgels! I started to watch this only because of your post.

  4. Kalandra says:

    ” Spring 2010 had many speeer hits. This is one of the biggest ones. ”

    Whats speeer? I assume you mean sleeper hits.

  5. psgels psgels says:

    Kalandra: really weird typos yeah. Thanks for noticing it.

  6. Kalandra says:

    It be great if you make a list for sleeper hits that you blogged about (that remained unnoticed outside of this blog).

  7. psgels psgels says:

    Kaladra: you mean like, from this season or just all of the sleeper hits I blogged about?

  8. Kalandra says:

    All the sleepers hits you blogged about would be too much, you probably forgotten half of them. How bout the sleeper hits of this year?

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  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Thursday, Oct 23. 2014 02:15 PM)
    show might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but its a detailed look into anime production that’s pretty damn rare, especially in english.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Thursday, Oct 23. 2014 02:09 PM)
    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1287579779/art-of-making-santa-company-a-complete-guide btw, if anyone’s interested in animation, this might be of interest.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Thursday, Oct 23. 2014 01:23 PM)
    oh ok. that explains it lol. quite…brilliant,
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Thursday, Oct 23. 2014 01:21 PM)
    wait what. why is a love hotel so close to an amusement park. jesus, the permits they must’ve paid.
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Oct 23. 2014 01:21 PM)
    @Bagel: My brother and his friends don’t allow me to mention that film, it is a dirty word.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Thursday, Oct 23. 2014 01:20 PM)
    especially that earthbending. i will never forget how off-sync that earthbending was with the effects.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Thursday, Oct 23. 2014 01:19 PM)
    @Emma oh it better. The Last Airbender would’ve been watchable if it at least had the action to warrant it. But those sorry excuses of martial arts…it was like watching a parody movie.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Thursday, Oct 23. 2014 01:18 PM)
    @Emma well yeah, but those are from the past. speaking of which, don’t know if we can get films like that anymore. even the critics seemed to have moved onto the faster pace of contemporary films.
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Oct 23. 2014 01:17 PM)
    @Bagel: Oh it was still a middling film that I gave a 3/5 to but its moreso not as bad as people say, focus on the action, which there was enough of and its watchable.
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Oct 23. 2014 01:14 PM)
    @Bagel: Theres old classic Japanese films like 7 samurai, rashamon and black cat.

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