Posted by psgels on 17 March 2012 with categories: Anime Reviews



To start this review, here is where I was coming from when starting Nisemonogatari: I really did not like its predecessor, Bakemonogatari. I had a ton of problems with how Shaft executed that series; it was trying too hard, the tons of still frames, far-away shots and blank frames made it look more like a slide-show than an actual anime, the characters bored me, the subject material didn’t feel interesting. It was a chore to sit through. In the meantime though, Shaft changed a lot. It’s not like they stopped making boring shows (Arakawa’s second season was a pain to sit through…), but their successes have allowed them to get a budget to actually animate their series really well. Enter Nisemonogatari.

To my surprise, I actually liked this series. I have a ton of problems with it, don’t get me wrong. But they actually get less in the way compared to Bakemnonogatari, and I was actually able to enjoy the good stuff inbetween these flaws.

Now, by far the biggest improvement and the biggest reason to watch this series is the visual presentation. Unlike Shaft’s early work, the characters in this series are actually animated, and they’re animated really well. Heck, Nisemonogatari was by far the best animated series of this Winter Season, and that is with a season that has a Shoji Kawamori series and a Brains Base series. There is a ton of creativity in the images without looking like it’s trying too hard with pretentious references or unnecessary convoluted detail. This show is a visual feast.

Bakemonogatari also really got on my nerves with its really poor storytelling. It had a ton of dialogue and all, but in the end its arcs never really seemed to amount to anything. To my surprise however, I actually really liked the way in which the both arcs that comprises this series resolved themselves. The dialogue was actually used well, and the growth tat the different characters go through is much more interesting. So yeah, I liked this show. but it really made it hard at times.

You might notice that Bakemonogatari had 15 episodes which combined to five different arcs, and even then it was dragged out. Nisemonogatari has 11 episodes… and consists out of only two arcs. It takes forever to get anywhere, and especially its first half drags on horribly. And ti does so with an ungodly amount of fanservice.

Seriously, this show randomly brings in characters, giving them a rather shallow reason to appear again and then proceeds to have them walk around naked, bathe with the male lead and all kinds of other stuff. At best it’s creative and clever, but at worst it’s realy distasteful. You’d think that at least the dialogue would make up for it, but even that grinds to a halt when the characters end up talking about nothing else but fanservice, over and over and over again.

This really ends up eating away at the majority of the series. The entire female cast needs to have had a long dragged out fanservice scene with the male lead that doesn’t go anywhere. It’s just way too much. Just as you think you’re done with one girl, the male lead moves on to the next and it starts all over again. The important lines that are tacked onto it that actually develop the characters and add more to them feel tacked more than anything. This show even jumps the implied incest bandwagon without really contributing anything to it. I don’t mind fanservice if it’s used well and all, but this was just way too much.

Thankfully, the points where it gets down to business, it really becomes good, and this series does really give some good insights into its lead cast. The dialogue whenever the fanservice isn’t involved is actually dedicated to fleshing out the characters and the wordplay is more put to the side-lines. Watch this if you want to see an arthouse flick, because it definitely is a well directed visual feast.

Storytelling: 7/10 – Great dialogue, way TOO MUCH fanservice.
Characters: 8/10 – Good development, interesting cast, well fleshed out characters for once.
Production-Values: 9/10 – Gorgeous and fluid animation with very creative shots and images. The music is nothing special, though.
Setting: 8/10 – Even though nobody seems to live in the world of Nisemonogatari outside of the main characters, the underlying themes make up for itwith some neat ideas and backstories.

Suggestions:
Dororon Enma-Kun Meerameera
High School of the Dead
Michiko e Hatchin

20 Responses

  1. Dynellen says:

    To give some context for the extreme levels of fanservice in this anime: the author loves writing and he has said that he wrote Nisemonogatari alone. It was something he wrote purely for his own enjoyment, fulfilling his fetishes and he really said that he never meant for it to be published.

    It’s considered to be the weakest novel in the monogatari-series by fans. But even then I greatly enjoyed watching this weekly, all the Shaftism and references and quirky dialogue were thoroughly enjoyable since for once I didn’t have to sit through the endless clichés that fill almost all the other anime these days.

    I’m very much looking forward to the Kizumonogatari movie and hoping Nekomonogatari gets animated soon.

    • psgels psgels says:

      Actually, I’d say that Nisemonogatari also has its fair set of cliches. Like a lot of other shows though, it also brings new stuff to the table.

      • Buck Wade says:

        Dude, the characters suck. They show no sort of emotion in their face or tone of voice, they just beat each other up and act as though nothing happened! Why isn’t anybody actually paying attention to this anime’s flaws?

  2. Cytl says:

    I loved the last episode of Nise. It’s a shame Tsukihi’s arc was so short in comparison with Karen’s (I really liked the former a lot more). Now it’s time to wait for Kizumonogatari and see if the rest of the novels (where hings get really crazy and new narrators appear)are animated: I hope so.

    • Mark says:

      Shinbo has stated that he plans to animate the whole Monogatari series and that there are currently 10 ‘Nisio Isin Anime’ projects planned (including Bakemonogatari, Katanagatari, Nisemonogatari and Kizumonogatari but not including Medaka Box) with it being Shinbo’s intention to make the 10th project an anime-original series. If, as you say, things get really crazy from here on out then this is great news.

      I have to say I thought this series was a lot weaker than the previous, though. I enjoyed it but it felt too loose, the stories less interesting and the dialogue didn’t feel as strong after the first couple of episodes.

      I also hope Shinbo focusing on Monogatari doesn’t hurt Zaregoto’s chances at an anime adaption as, from reading the two novels that were released in English, that felt like his most impressive work.

      Hopefully Nisio Isin’s anime adaptions are earning so much money that other (good) studios will be jumping at the opportunity to animate his other different series. Fingers crossed for Medaka Box. It isn’t as interesting or clever as his light novels but it has it’s moments.

      • Cytl says:

        Zaregoto… sometimes that sounds like a dream. It has awesome plot, great characters and plays directly with the reader’s heart. It also avoids the elements some people hate about Nisioisin (almost no wordplay and no fanservice; at least as far as I’ve read). The series is already completed so there would be no problem with an original ending. Maybe one day.

  3. Will says:

    Probably the worst series Shaft ever conceived.

    • Jerry says:

      I like the part where you backed up your opinion with an explanation oh wai-

    • Buck Wade says:

      I agree with you there. The characters show no sort of emotion, just get kidnapped then try to kill the male lead and act as though nothing happened. The thing that sucks about senjougahara, is that she never ever shows any sort of emotion in her voice or face. Really? You call that an awesome character? So yeah, the characters are poor souls who get saved by the male lead, then beat him up and show no sort of remorse. Whenever something’s happening, the show side tracks to something stupid, like how streets go and stuff. Really? This anime is just overrated

  4. ark says:

    Nisemono was pretty weak compared to bakemonogatari, and this episode just proved it, what a boring final. Expected a lot more from Shaft

    • Buck Wade says:

      Yeah, Nisemonogatari kept side tracking to stupid and annoying stuff. I mean we’re watching an anime that focuses on the supernatural and talking, so we want the characters to just talk about the supernatural but NO! Instead they say, “lets talk about girl’s underwear!” Seriously, the conversations are just annoying

  5. Litho says:

    The main problem with this show is that it spends way too much time talking about nothing. The pseudo-witty wordplay would be bearable if it made a point, but most of the time it ends up sounding like a pre-teen reprising your conventional gerrymandering state politician during election season.

  6. dm00 says:

    I felt Nisemonogatari to be the weaker of the two Nisioisin series that Shinbo has tackled. I understand the complaints about Bakemonogatari‘s stylishness, but I disagree with them — I thought Bakemonogatari was more experimental and playful, and I appreciated that. Nisemonogatari seems more conventional (although the production values are higher — presumably the studio has an adequate budget and staff for the project, which was clearly not the case when it was animating both Bakemonogatari and one of the Zetsubou Sensei series). Big budgets seem to have led SHAFT to flabby thinking.

    But I think a big chunk of the disappointment lies with the source material. The Nisemonogatari stories just seem weaker than the Bakemonogatari stories, and stretched out over more episodes, too. Less drama (perhaps deliberate on Nisioisin’s part), less interesting talk, less novelty. Bakemonogatari I can see watching over and over again. Nisemonogatari, I can’t.

  7. Mike Stevens says:

    This review is fair.

    • Litho says:

      I think the review is too forgiving and the score too generous.

      • Mike Stevens says:

        Well im happy to disagree with you there. I mean this anime is hard to score. It does a lot of things amazingly well like visuals, sound, and witty dialogue. But fails completely on other points like the story line. I understand its Echii and this is an adaptation from a book but the story line still is poor regardless. I would want to give it a lower score from that point but its hard to with all the other great aspects. 75 would be as lowest i would score it. When i see an 80 on psgels site what i see is “Its not the best, but its worth watching”. What did you think of the show Litho?

  8. RABUJOI says:

    Both arcs sputtered at their starts but they ended on very strong, confident notes, albeit in totally different ways. Dealing with Kaiki meant a war of words and negotiations and lies. Dealing with Yozuru started out as a physical confrontation, but Koyomi’s determination ultimately led her to stand down. IMO, the best two episodes were the Karen finale and the Tsukihi finale.

    • Oroboros says:

      I agree with RABUJOI. Both arcs ended on a powerful note, which demonstrates NisionIsin’s gift for rhetoric. It could have been better, had the focus on the nisemono been stronger throughout, rather than a point of interest the elliptic plot kept orbiting.

      Shaft pulled off a fantastic job in adapting the slippery material with gorgeous eye candy and solid animation that adds/enhanced the story.

      While NisionIsin did slip up into self-induglence, and Shaft exacerbated this with “fan-service” type of scenes, Nisemonogatari surpassed my expectations and is one of my favorites of 2012.

  9. Ren3D says:

    Hey, whenever you give a review, could you please give a short synopsis about the story as well. It’d really help decide if I want to watch the anime or not. Thanks.

Leave a Reply

Shoutbox

Name:
Email:
For:  
Mail will not be published
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Apr 18. 2015 06:21 PM)
    @Aidan: I only ever briefly played blazblue, but like guilty gear I saw enough of it so that I knew to view it like all fighting games, throw the plot out the window and not dwell on it and focus on the gameplay because its just a fighting game.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Apr 18. 2015 03:50 PM)
    Ta da!. Now there only a few more till these are done.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Apr 18. 2015 03:45 PM)
    Alright, meant to put these up yesterday but anyone on now might be a bit surprised at this. Though bad news is that I still don’t have my new laptop and this was only managed with the broken old one. Stupid slow ass couriers.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Apr 18. 2015 03:43 PM)
    @Emma, I actually had fun with Huniepop. Gameplay worked and I found the lack of anime stereotypes to be refreshing. Though I did play it after blazblue continuum shift so maybe my standards were just set to low.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Apr 18. 2015 05:21 AM)
    Sorry for spamming up the chat, had to get that out =P
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Apr 18. 2015 05:20 AM)
    Not that I wasted time playing it myself or watching the whole playthough. And fuck you, fuck you Aidan and thank you for mentioning that shit to me, got a great guilty laugh out of that.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Apr 18. 2015 05:18 AM)
    That it was actually dubbed into English was odd and amused me further, I don’t think I’ve ever seen an English voiced VN before. If dating in real life was this awful, babies would never get made lol
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Apr 18. 2015 05:17 AM)
    Oh hahaha, I seem to remember a visual novel called huniepop was mentioned on here. Not suggesting that anyone play it, make no mistake this is shallow, pandering shit but I watched a playthrough of it on youtube and almost died laughing at the awfulness and how the guy playing it was taking the piss/joking around throughout the whole playthrough.
  • Emma
    (Friday, Apr 17. 2015 05:11 PM)
    Can’t get into Beck at the moment, tried watching eight episodes, the music is alright but the animation is very inconsistent, the drama is bone dry and the cliches started getting to me.
  • AidanAK47
    (Friday, Apr 17. 2015 12:59 PM)
    @cizu, it is a very good show. Only problem being that its got little rewatch value. I recommend checking out the Umineko no naku koro ni visual novel as it is similar. There is an anime of it but it doesn’t do the visual novel justice.

1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · »

Featured Posts

Fate/Stay Night Unlimited Bladeworks – 14

As a reader of the Fate/stay night visual novel I can confirm that the majority of this episode was anime original content. However instead of being about castors history like I thought, it’s of his backstory with her first master. In all honestly making the episode be about her history with Jason would have been […]

Some Quick First Impressions: DanMachi, Denpa Kyoushi and Arslan Senki

Dungeon ni Deai wo Motomeru no wa Machigatteiru Darou ka Short Synopsis: Our protagonist wants to be an RPG pimp I am getting SAO reminders already. Let me talk about something for a moment. You see when I first played the game dark souls I was frustrated and angry at myself because of my own […]

Some Quick First Impressions: Gunslinger Stratos, Seraph of the end and Yahari season 2

Gunslinger Stratos Short Synopsis: Our protagonist falls into an alternate world full of trigger happy people. I am fairly certain that Gen is not writing this. You can see part of him in the concept but not anywhere else. The episode gave me a mixed impression. I hate the characters and find the main to […]

Fate/Stay Night Unlimited Bladeworks – 13

It’s back and still as beautiful as ever. Sadly not a fourty minutes long and still leaves me hungry by episodes end. It does seem to cut off suddenly rather than end. So after telling Shirou to stay away and stating how only masters should stay in the war, Rin is thrust into the exact […]

Death Parade Review – 65/100

  When I heard that Death Billards would be getting a full 12 episode series called Death Parade I was quite excited. The one episode short looked to be an excellent concept for a episodic series. A bar which people are sent to when they die which decides whether they go to heaven or hell […]

Death Parade – 12

So this is the end of Death Parade. Or at least this is the end of what may be it’s first and last season. The ongoing plot didn’t so much as tie itself up but rather fizzle out. Leaving a second season to tie up loose ends. A second season that may never come. I […]

Parasyte The Maxim Review-82.5/100

Parasyte, along with Gugure Kokkuri-San, are the only two shows from the last season that I’ve actually finished, and that’s actually saying quite a lot–seeing as how I haven’t been watching (much less blogging) anime at all this past season. However, I figured I should at least write a final review for Parasyte, just because […]

Death Parade – 11

So we are reaching the final conclusion and things are coming to a head. Chiyuki’s memories are restored and we find that in life she was an ice skater. An odd choice but it did lead to a rather beautiful scene of Chiyuki skating on Ice as she recalled her past. Admittedly I did try […]

Death Parade – 10

So Onna name is finally revealed and newly christened Chiyuki plays a game of old maid with a storyteller. Death parade, you are doing it again. You are drifting from what should be the focus of the series and really pushing this ongoing plot thread. So we learn a number of things. One, that Chiyuki’s […]

Latest Reviews

Shirobako Review – 80/100

When you see a harem anime and sigh as the breasts of the female lead jiggle with every step and wind that can flip a skirt it’s easy to forget that somewhere in Japan a group of people worked hard to get that jiggle right and draw each frame of animation. The hardships of the […]

Clipboard06

Nerawareta Gakuen Review – 84/100

Let me talk a bit about Ryousuke Nakamura. For a long time, this guy was my hero. He started off as an assistant director to Monster, in my opinion a big reason why that series got such a ridiculously solid adaptation, and then in 2008 he came with the groundbreaking Mouryou no Hako. No TV-series […]

Clipboard03

Kick Heart

Okay, so I didn’t want to exit 2013 without having seen Masaaki Yuasa’s Kick Heart. It’s only twelve minutes anyway, and I consider him to be one of the best anime directors out there. The story here is pretty silly and mostly serves as a backdrop, so I mostly want to talk about the nature […]

Clipboard01

Kyousogiga Review – 90/100

Everyone’s taste is different, and that’s a wonderful thing because that allows us to have so many different forms of media that all aim toward their own niche. My blog is obviously written from the perspective of my own taste, and even when a show doesn’t cater to it (which is nearly always), I love […]

Clipboard04

Ore no Nounai Sentakushi ga, Gakuen Lovecome o Zenryoku de Jama Shiteiru Review – 80/100

Noucome! You do not want to know how long I have been waiting for a series like this. More than half a decade, at the very least. Finally a series comes along and puts the incredibly overused harem genre in its place. And it actually does it well. Thank you! So to elaborate: the harem […]

Clipboard01

Pokemon: The Origin Review – 75/100

Normally I try to avoid spoilers with these reviews, but screw it, it’s Pokemon. Pokemon The Origin is a bomb of nostalgia. If you haven’t played Pokemon Red, Blue or Green, then you will not enjoy this one slight bit. This really is made as pure undilluted fanservice for the fans of the first games. […]

Clipboard08

Tamayura – More Aggressive Review – 75/100

I’m not going to dedicate a post for my impression for the final three episodes of this series. It was just too boring to write much about. I guess that that gives a pretty accurate indication of what I think about this series. Right at the start of Tamayura’s second season, I asked one question: […]

Clipboard04

Silver Spoon Review – 86/100

When Noitamina started airing two series per season, it was amazing. It’s a timeslot that on average tends to be aimed at a much older audience than usual, and having two series with the same mentality definitely helped to bring more diversity to anime overall. Unfortunately it’s a schedule that could not be kept up […]

Clipboard07

Yondemasuyo, Azazel-San Z Review – 82,5/100

Reviewing a comedy sequel usually is quite simple: in most cases it just drops the bomb and runs out of inspiration, and in rare cases it actually manages to stay hilarious. The tricky thing with these kinds of series is that you need to remain funny, and you need to have the inspiration for that. […]