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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  • Masky
    (Sunday, Aug 2. 2015 02:09 PM)
    Geez, people really make odd excuses when defending stuff they like ._.
    …I feel like thats probably hypocritical comment coming from me since I’ve probably done that too, but I think I usually go with attitude of “Hey, you’d probably not like it anyway, but I think you are wrong about that thing” xD
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 09:47 PM)
    @Aidan: I would recommend downloading it rather than browser-playing it as my browser kept crashing when I tried to.
    Its quite short but it gives a great teaser and introduction to the game, that gets me excited for it.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 09:45 PM)
    @Aidan: Mangagamer have released the demo for kara no shoujo 2, they’ve also confirmed a release for Autumn. Its probably better to call this demo more of a prologue/compliment to the game with content exclusive to it.
    Demo/prologue here: http://mangagamer.org/kns2/
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 02:14 PM)
    @invicableGod, Yep that comment was spam. Should have got rid of it first time I saw it.
  • Wicked
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 01:10 AM)
    well, this place changed a lot. Gotta say, I’m not a fan of how they adapted GATE into an anime. It feels too decompressed. Manga did a better job at keeping the tension taut
  • ;(
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 01:08 AM)
    Also I am not the blog, I’m just a poster… I really hope you have enough sense to tell the difference…
  • ;(
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 01:07 AM)
    @Emo: you’re saying all that like that doesn’t fit your description to a T. Kinda sad actually…
    Well I guess now at least I gave you one more thing to get angry about so your day seems just a bit more active than your last.
  • ;(
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 01:03 AM)
    I don’t think people are really expected to read it from the start anymore. I mean that’s probably why it stays popular in Japan considering people would have to be in their 20s at least to keep up from the start without reading hundreds of chapters just to keep up.
  • ;(
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 01:00 AM)
    Well admittly comics don’t seem to be that easy to follow (don’t actually read comics despite liking a lot of DC and marvel media), but anyway it’s not like the other long-running shounens in terms of continuity and more like the long-running comedies like say Kochikoma.
  • ;(
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 12:56 AM)
    If you don’t like it, it’s cool.
    If you don’t feel like watching a thing that still airs weekly that’s also cool.
    If you leave it because it’s long or far from ending, you’re really missing out for little reason. One Piece is like western comics, the characters and setting has been around for years but each saga comes as a standalone story and for the most part is directed at both veterans and newcomers.

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