Posted by psgels on 27 March 2011 with categories: Letter Bee



Nowhere near a great ending, but this also wasn’t a complete disaster. Really: this ending had both its good and bad parts.

Let’s start with the bad points: the climax of the series looking much more like an anti-climax. This is one thing that the creators of the anime just got wrong and it was a flimsy way to end the series. I can imagine what they wanted to do: bad guy sacrifices himself, the person that the lead character looks up to gets mortally wounded and so the lead character summons his inner powers in order to get rid of it. This was told very sloppily, though. It just doesn’t fit in the story. What really would have fitted much better was to exit this series with an exciting chase scene that involved all of the important characters.

At the same time though: that short climax did allow the aftermath to be very good. I mean, this series did not magically bring back Gauche’s heart, but explicitly stated that Lag gave him a new purpose in life. I mean, that pretty neatly wraps up his story here and I applaud the creators for that. Sunni meanwhile has the chance to recover (probably because she only got half-eaten by the cabernet), but again I like how the creators didn’t magically make her better, and instead made her recovery something that could happen over time, if it even would have happened at all.

Overall this series left some questions behind, but with most of them I actually don’t mind that they were unanswered. Lag’s mother for example had no business being inside this climax: there just wasn’t enough time to really focus on her character in detail, and instead this series gave enough hints to who she was and why Lag ended up the way he did. The rest of the details, we can fill in for ourselves. This episode has this “life goes on”-theme that I appreciate a lo. I’ve certainly seen much worse endings than this.

In the end, the big mistake that the creators made is that some of their key ideas just backfired on them. Of course the climax of this episode was one I’m referring to, but the biggest of them all was how they decided to put Gauche’s return at the end of the first season. I can definitely understand why they did it: the finale of the first season was one of the best hooks to a second season I’ve seen in a long, long while. At the same time, though they had to waste a lot of time in order to accomplish that, and because of that they ran out of time near the end when it became clear that they only could get 50 episodes.

If the creators would have chosen to continue with the story of the manga, I do think that I would have whined a lot more at this series, simply because there is no way that it could have been wrapped up in time. What the creators did here is commendable. It’s just a shame that they just aren’t the best storytellers.
Rating: * (Good)

3 Responses

  1. JBM says:

    A very good review of the final episode. But I’m sure psgels, you already expected something like this. An ending that wouldn’t match the high expectations one would have of a series as good as Letter Bee.

    The moment I decided to watch Letter Bee I knew it wouldn’t end in a great, spectacular way (in the vein of other shounen series like say, FMA-Brotherhood) knowing this was an adaptation of a manga that is still currently running. Any fan of anime knows that it is quite foolish to adapt a currently running manga without ruining it in the latter part when it’s time to end the series. There are exceptions of course, but I didn’t expect Letter Bee to be the exception knowing full well what the creators are capable of.

    Still, having lowered my expectations, I still think this was a pretty good way to end the series and I suggest anyone who would like to all 50 episodes of this series to lower their expectation near the end. There’s just no way the creators could have created a better one. But that’s just my opinion.

  2. Tan-Tan says:

    Sad there would be no more of Letter Bee in anime…

  3. Hogart says:

    Yeah, this ending was weak and very anticlimactic, there’s no getting around it. The moment they went with the Cabernet plot I knew that they wouldn’t have time to end this well. Surely they could have whipped up a better original ending from the first half of the season, rather than just following the manga into a corner?

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  • Bam
    (Thursday, May 5. 2016 10:26 AM)
    What do you think?
  • Bam
    (Thursday, May 5. 2016 10:25 AM)
    I met a French art student in a bar tonight, and after getting into Hugo and Notre-Dame de Paris, he suggested a more faithful French theater production of it. He believed that this is a much better portrayal of the conflicted priestly character of Frollo, and specifically offered this Hellfire-esque song sang by the talented Daniel Lavoie as evidence:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K5St9zF849o
  • SuperMario
    (Thursday, May 5. 2016 08:22 AM)
    @Kaiser: haha. If this film indeed was made I’ll be the first one on the line to watch it.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Thursday, May 5. 2016 06:32 AM)
    @Mario: This made me laugh far more than it should have: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kno3xDw27bY
  • Bam
    (Thursday, May 5. 2016 06:30 AM)
    Anybody else seen Jungle Book yet?
  • Bam
    (Thursday, May 5. 2016 06:25 AM)
    @Kaiser: I see. Look retro, so I might actually enjoy.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, May 5. 2016 06:24 AM)
    I don’t wanna hyperbolize, so I admit that some of the Disney/Marvel stuff has ingenuity to it. Guardians and even Antman had their moments of disarming charm, and genuine sentiment from the cast and crew, that made it special and not just another superhero flick.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, May 5. 2016 06:22 AM)
    @Aidan: Marvel movies feel like a very nice amusement park ride- they are always fun, but the return diminishes after successive exposure. Everything in the movies, from the fights, to the dialogue, and plot is incredibly formulatic. You just don’t get the same effect when you know what’s coming.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Wednesday, May 4. 2016 06:05 PM)
    @Bam: Actually let me rephrase
    I meant that you will like: http://letterboxd.com/film/the-company-of-wolves/
    Because it is fairyrale inspired
    Because you liked brotherhood of the wolf and tale of tales.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Wednesday, May 4. 2016 06:02 PM)
    @Bam: I meant tale of tales =)
    @Mario: My usual ratings are ***/***1/2 rating and ****
    Generally that indicates a film is kind good/good or great.

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