Posted by psgels on 18 September 2011 with categories: Anime Reviews, Tiger & Bunny




The past years have shown a sudden influx of superhero series. It started with Ultraviolet and the Batman movies, then Heroman came and Madhouse had its Marvel series. The best of the bunch however, is Tiger and Bunny.

What this show did was quite special: it didn’t just pick a bunch of superheroes and had them fight crime. It constructed a very creative concept and setting around them: making them tv-stars. In the world of Tiger & Bunny, cameras follow every movement of the heroes as they catch bad guys, and they have been turned into a television phenomenon. By turning superheroes into celebrities, funded by sponsorships, this show is both able to celebrate, and criticize modern media.

The characters really succeed in making such an interesting setting come alive. One of the biggest strengths of this series is how fun the main cast is to watch. Especially the episodes that focus on just a few of them and explore their characters shine in their dynamics. This series is able to create very strong stories that are above all very fun to watch, making this one of the most enjoyable series of the past half year. Nearly every single episode delivers, and at the end of the series the cast has grown tremendously with powerful changes.

The format of this series is that it consists out of two halves. Each half starts off with a number of episodic stories that are meant to flesh out the cast and build up the story, after which a continuous story produces a climax. The plot of this series deserves praises especially because of how well it builds up. In fact, this is one of those stories where the build-up is actually more interesting to watch than the finales themselves. The creators throw in a ton of details as they slowly show more and more about the multi-layered storyline, while at the same time creating interesting individual stories for each of the cast members. it blends in seamlessly.

For me, the major flaw of this series was really that the finales went fairly straight-forward, and just not as interesting as the rest of the series. The cliches that were brilliantly used in the majority of the series in order to achieve some very creative effects suddenly became just… cliches. And that stood out a bit. The journey to the destination however was more than worth it.

Storytelling: 9/10 – Weaves various plot-lines very nicely throughout the story, is very well paced and above all really fun to watch. Albeit the finales are the least interesting parts of the show.
Characters: 9/10 – Awesome cast, wonderful development.
Production-Values: 8/10 – Yoshihiro Ike’s soundtrack rocks, the CG works, but often moves jerky, and the 2D animation also has its moments of inconsistencies. It’s a very colourful and bright looking series, though.
Setting: 9/10 – This series is very creative with its premise, and makes brilliant use of it.

Suggestions:
The Big O
Zone of the Enders
Mobile Police Patlabor

6 Responses

  1. LilyGinnyBlack says:

    Since the entirety of the series’ plot was built on cliches, when things became cliche that didn’t really bother me overall, but I can see how it could bother some others.

    I also liked how, with T&B’s plot, most of the big plot twists were expected (and already predicted by fans) but were usually executed wonderfully and it would be the small details that would really add to the reveals and make them so good, rather than the reveals themselves.

    I also don’t really have much gripes with the plot because it wasn’t meant to be anything special, this series has a homage feel to it, to a certain extent at least, and that really shines through in the rather basic and straightforward plots. But, most of the time, characters are actually more important to me than plot. If I don’t like the characters I will care less about the plot.

    And, of course, character building was something that T&B excelled at. All of the characters in this series are memorable, either when it comes to character design or personality or both. Also, characters that have elements of character types (such as Karina and Barnaby with their Tsundere-ness) never have that character type completely take over their personality and the way they act and behave, which is refreshing.

    I also think that the world building was great in T&B too, which definitely helps in the immersion department.

    I’m really interested and eager for whatever continuation there is going to be for this series, since it is just plain fun and enjoyable to watch. It’s not a masterpiece, but it wasn’t meant to be and I don’t think it ever tried to be either.

  2. Lirael says:

    Thank you for blogging this series, I only started watching it after reading your reviews.

    I liked how this series shows that you don’t need to subvert each and evry cliche to make a series enjoyable.

    Just wanted to say something about the production values: sadly, the reason it wasn’t that good is due to the fact that Sunrise thought the show would bomb, and thus invested all it’s money in Sacred Seven (bet they’re reggreting that now…) the show only managed to scrap by enough money to be actually produced due to the investment made by the sponsors.

  3. Cholisose says:

    I’ll admit the title of the show kept me from considering giving this show a try, but it seems that a lot of people have really enjoyed it. I think I’ll give it a try some time–I’ve heard it’s a fun one.

  4. DangerMouse says:

    Awesome job blogging this series, I really enjoyed reading and definitely agree the build up parts were just fantastic and every episode was always a blast to watch.

    I think I enjoyed the climaxes a tiny little more than you since I didn’t really expect them to avoid the cliches in them however I do agree that they would have been even more gripping/exciting and potentially pushed it up to the next level if they had managed to play with the execution of those climax cliches as much and as successfully as they did with various cliches during the fun parts, but it didn’t really take much away from them either since they were still pretty exciting :)

    Definitely agree with the similar suggestions, I definitely got cool Big O vibes at various points in the show even from the way they showed the city and I absolutely loved Big O, and ZOE had a similarly good mix of action, wonderfully executed comedy/buildup and fun messing with cliches (since that show has another rare father-aged character for the lead). :)

  5. Hogart says:

    What worked for me was that Tiger and Bunny was one of those series that was well aware of it’s cliched nature. When it didn’t go too far into abusing them, it was a lot fun. When it crossed the line, which sadly happened at the end, it fell apart just like any other show.

    I found it difficult to adjust my expectations for this show. It was too easy to have fun, and think that the series was going to try something that wasn’t cliched. The only time I really felt let down was the ending, when I wanted them to do something different to make the show memorable and not just “fun”.

    But I won’t knock it for just being fun. It’s rare enough that I genuinely find an anime fun without forcing myself in some way.

  6. Oroboros says:

    A failure of a great idea. A potentially post-watchmen turned out to be a bland generic superhero tale that’s merely reset for another generic tale.

    Media marketed corporate heroes? It’s hardly been done before!

    Too bad the creators chose to ground this ambitious premise with cliches after cliches.

    A good cast of characters that never went anywhere. A homo-erotic relationship scared to come out of the closet. Substandard CGI animation turned me off big time.

    This show deserves nothing more than a C plus. Won’t bother with the second season.

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  • WyattX
    (Wednesday, Nov 26. 2014 07:34 PM)
    Just watch it for how fracking trashy it is. “It’s so bad, it’s good” is a huge understatement. Go through the series in order for the full effect you’ll get when you watch the OVAs. Just pure gold.
  • WyattX
    (Wednesday, Nov 26. 2014 07:23 PM)
    I recommend you watch Princess Lover then watch the OVAs. The series itself is relatively normal (although crap) but the OVA are hentai. You get to see the hilarious jump from non-h to hentai as the main character turns into a hungry sex addict and tries to get into the heroine’s pants every five seconds when he HAD acted like a gentleman the entire series. LOL
  • Emma
    (Wednesday, Nov 26. 2014 01:02 PM)
    Generally later on when alot of comedies need to wrap things up they try to force in a plot so they can get some kind of ending. I know, agree its generally terrible, some of the drama later in toradora for example made me want to detusk a walrus in frustration.
  • WyattX
    (Wednesday, Nov 26. 2014 09:27 AM)
    What is it with light comedies trying to turn melodramatic as the series gets stretched out? What if we did the reverse? Let’s say theoretically that it happened to Tsubasa Chronicle. It would start out melodramatic as usual, then devolve into a simple, light slapstick comedy and forget about the story. People would lose their minds.
  • Emma
    (Wednesday, Nov 26. 2014 07:44 AM)
    Here I take a second look at time of eve/eve no jiken: http://emma-hime.deviantart.com/art/Review-Time-of-eve-496663893
  • Emma
    (Wednesday, Nov 26. 2014 03:06 AM)
    I’m not sure whether to watch the sequel or not.
  • Emma
    (Wednesday, Nov 26. 2014 03:04 AM)
    @Aidan: I try to avoid watching films where I can.
    Although you’ve got me to look back on my own review of guardians of the galaxy, the words I use in it don’t reflect the 4 out of 5 I gave it .
  • AidanAK47
    (Wednesday, Nov 26. 2014 03:04 AM)
    Started to notice pretty big plot holes too. like Gamora went to open the door to baddys chamber. But after opening it she shoots a hole in the roof and jumps straight into the bad guys chamber. So if you can get in that way then why did you send the others in a roundabout route instead of just blowing up the roof and getting there that way?
  • AidanAK47
    (Wednesday, Nov 26. 2014 02:49 AM)
    The comedy tends to only work once and it’s pretty weak. Like the “You are making me kick grass!” line. It’s not particularly funny, only random. The villain is just bland as hell. The characters are charming but not particularly deep.
    It’s a decent popcorn flick. But I am actually having second thoughts on getting it on DVD.
  • AidanAK47
    (Wednesday, Nov 26. 2014 02:46 AM)
    Hmm…Guardians of the galaxy wasn’t quite as good on a re-watch. First time it was pretty good. Now though it’s just…good. The film is just too damn long and like most marvel films…just mindless fun. That isn’t really bad, I mean there’s nothing wrong with fun. But when people are claiming this was one of the best superhero movies ever..yeah not so much.

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