Posted by psgels on 29 March 2011 with categories: Level E



Awesome to see the entire main cast together again for the finale of this series. I mean, these are the kinds of characters who are awesome to watch, no matter what they do. Having an entire arc focus on them was exactly what this show needed to close off well.

Also, I finally spotted an overused cliche in this series: the seemingly helpless girl who manages to hit a home-run against all expectations. But then again, as an alien it makes perfect sense, and this episode even poked fun at the “walking into the shower”-scene that baffles me of why it was the first one to do that.

Overall, it’s true that the first arc of Level E was without a doubt its best: it had the element of surprise and used it utterly brilliantly. What happened after that is very interesting, though. Instead of joining the bandwagon of trying to make more episodes in the same vein, the rest of the episodes continued to experiment with all kinds of different stories and characters surrounding aliens on earth. Standalone it’s indeed easy to just compare the to the first three episodes and label this as a show that goes downhill, but nevertheless I find the way in which this series paints together a complete picture, making use of its momentum and constantly changing its focus and characters, to be quite brilliant and the single most enjoyable show of this season.

The thing is that I rarely give very high ratings to comedies, even though it’s a huge genre in anime. Level E has opened my eyes on how good the genre can be when it has some actually interesting stories to tell. This way, it can also be good whenever it’s not funny. Call it the X-Factor of comedies. With most comedies I’m just disappointed when they’re not funny, because besides being funny they fall apart without their humour. For Level E though, I think that it also would have worked as a series if it didn’t have its humour. It’d obviously be less awesome, but I can imagine that it would still keep my attention.

What’s more: a lot of comedies seem to be trying to solve this by going all serious in the final two episodes. I’ve only seen very few of them that actually pulled off such a good climax, though (Hyakko being one of those rare examples). This series however showed that you can just as easily tell serious stories that fit in 1 to 3 episodes that can work just as well as long arcs if they all succeed in coming together and form a whole and creating its own universe.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

7 Responses

  1. Joojoobees says:

    At first I wasn’t sure what to make of this show. It kept floating between Comedy and Science Fiction. In the end it seems like a pretty good synthesis of the two.

  2. jzar says:

    My pick for the best of the season! They have been a wonderful show, it’s so good to see a story done so well. I really can’t say enough good things about it.

  3. Tan-Tan says:

    Can’t blame the princess for falling in love…I mean, Prince was such a bishie @_@

  4. While I’ve found the series a bit hit and miss as at shifts between comedy and sci-fi, I’ve generally enjoyed it. The show is at its strongest when Yukitaka and Miho are there, but some of the other stuff has been alright too. Looking forward to seeing everything getting wrapped up. =)

  5. Mushyrulez says:

    Seemingly helpless?

    I also find it stupid that Mohan exercises with his human form – I mean, you could just switch into a more manly form anytime, right? You saw what Kraft Dinn-er, Kraft and co. were like when they first set foot on the planet.

  6. psgels psgels says:

    Mushyrulez: um, actually those were just their space-suits. ;)

  7. Moonhawk says:

    Somehow this girl doesn’t seem to me very helpless… in fact she reminds me a lot of Oujis first appearance where he tried to seem innocent and helpless, too. She did afterall compete with Ouki in solving problems and even got as far as being someho acknowledged by him. So I really doubt that she’s just some helpless little princess but expect her to be a genius mastermind (with a very obsessive behavior towards Ouji), too.

    All in all I really enjoyed this episode, the chemistry between Yukitaka, Miho and the rest ist just the best and it works once again so wonderfully!

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  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Jun 28. 2016 03:57 AM)
    @K-off: no but you’re right tho. There are shows that you can write a dissertation on each of its episodes, and then there’s others that you’ll be stretching it past a few sentences. They don’t all deserve the same treatment.
  • K-Off
    (Tuesday, Jun 28. 2016 03:50 AM)
    @Aidan Gamestop is a block from my apartment, and I couldn’t find anything better than 60 online.
    @Bam I said that in humor, but I agree every show has an audience and it wouldn’t hurt to get to those less covered animes every now and then. Hell, I remember psgels reviewing AKB0048 and ended up actually liking it.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Jun 28. 2016 03:15 AM)
    Also I vaguely remember hearing about Belladona, might check out the remastered at some point.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Jun 28. 2016 03:14 AM)
    @Kaiser: then Harmony is just like Empire of Corpses, a waste of good animation. Oh well, I’ll watch it once and forget about it then. Is there a torrent out for it already?
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Jun 28. 2016 02:22 AM)
    K-off: well usually these settings are backdrop for some form of character development, you can talk about that. There are some slice of life shows in which nothing happens, those are probably not worth reviewing tho. That’s why I’m still in favor of some shows getting a few episode reviewed at once.
  • AidanAK47
    (Tuesday, Jun 28. 2016 01:59 AM)
    @K-Off, thats odd. I got Tokyo Mirage for 40 euro. Were as I spent 60 on Fates. This time I bought it off amazon after finding out it was cheaper there.
  • K-Off
    (Monday, Jun 27. 2016 11:03 PM)
    Damn Tokyo Mirage is expensive. Costs more than a Fire Emblem game and Persona 4 combined so this better be worth it.
  • K-Off
    (Monday, Jun 27. 2016 10:57 PM)
    Always difficult to talk about slice of lifes. Usually its always “This week our characters went to the park. The end.”
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Monday, Jun 27. 2016 05:42 PM)
    @Bam: There was this bizzaro Joan of arc slide show arthouse erotica anime from the 70s that recently got a re-release, its somewhat tied to Tezuka, really trippy shit, Kanashimi no belladonna.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Monday, Jun 27. 2016 05:35 PM)
    As a book I could see it flowing better. Oshii or Kamiyama could more effectively adapt such density of material to screen.

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