Posted on 25 October 2007 with categories: Deltora Quest


Take any other anime, which involves fighting huge monsters. In nine out of ten cases, these monsters are just screaming and attacking with just no particular purpose, only waiting for the hero to defeat them. I love how Deltora Quest manages to avoid this often-made mistake by giving every single monster on the show the ability to talk and think on its own. Seriously, at the moment, the Shadow-Lord and Thaegan are the only ones who still feel like pure evil, but it isn’t like their stories are over, and I’m expecting their background along the way.

The king of Rat City, a huge three-headed dragon, may not have been the best boss this series had to offer (the fight with Thaegan was much better), it was refreshing to watch, when compared to the dozens of other series with villains who can’t think for themselves. Okay, Lief won in the end, but the storytelling was good enough for me not to mind. I also like how the end of the episode subverted the “Disney-ending”-trope, with the elixir of life that Jasmine got from the forest in the first arc.

Jasmine’s story for this episode may have been a bit too forced, and it could have gotten a bit more detail, but it does give a bit more depth to her character. Her reasons to join Lief were quite fragile to begin with, and with this episode, they were quite a bit strengthened. It seems that she just can’t leave Lief and Barda, who like to do first, think later (especially the former), alone. The three of them make a nice team: Lief’s courage, combined with Barda’s experience and Jasmine’s alertness.

One thing I didn’t like about this episode is the rats-part. I didn’t like how some parts of the castle were full of them, while in other parts they were nowhere to be found. There are a few clichés here and there in the storytelling, but the rest of it definitely makes up for them.

EDIT: I’ve decided to drop this series. Even if new episodes do get subbed, I’ll still watch them, but at this point I have no real intention to blog them.

Posted on 22 August 2007 with categories: Deltora Quest


Ah, I’ve missed this one. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like we’ll be seeing any new episodes soon, as it seemed that the translator of ACG has vanished without a trace. While his translations were crappy, at least there were some kind of translations. Let’s hope that they’ll find a new translator soon. I’m starting to regret waiting for the subs for this series, but right now I’m just too far behind to catch up.

Anyway, this episode wasn’t a special one, and it mainly focused at Lief’s sense of justice, and the truth about the Yurunai, or the Noratz, as they’re officially spelled. They live so secluded and clean because of their fear of rats, which overran their original city.

Especially Lief was cute in this episode. The fact remains that Tom is a merchant, and he’ll help anyone, whether it is the resistance or the Shadow Lord. Lief just can’t accept that there’s someone with a different sense of justice than his, which leads to quite some amusing banter between him and Jasmine. He even refuses to use the things he bought from Tom in the beginning.

I wonder what’s up with the ending of the episode, and what exactly made Jasmine to decide to give up. I suspect it’s because she just can’t keep up with Lief’s pace. She’s exclaimed clearly that she was out of energy, but Lief never really paid attention to it, and he wants to move forward at all costs.

And it’s true; Lief is an idiot. He’s got a sense of justice, he wants to help others, but he remains a kid in not taking the feeling of others in consideration. He just can’t act against his own feelings. While I usually hate these bratty ignorant characters, I can’t help but find Lief cute. It’s probably because he’s not a flat character, unlike most other shounen-shows. While this episode wasn’t really anything special, it did remind me why I fell in love with it, because its attention to detail in terms of storytelling is superb.

Posted on 22 May 2007 with categories: Deltora Quest


Ah, I’ve been dying for the next instalment of Deltora Quest, and once again I must say: whoa!

The Yurunai have really gotten more depth than you’d expect at first sight. At first, I believed that they were just the citizens of a city who were a bit too enthusiastic about their hygiene, but once again this anime surprises me to actually give them a reason to. I mean, when you live right next to a cave, covered with highly poisonous mushrooms that can kill you just by touching, it’d be perfectly plausible for these people to live cleaner than usual, to protect their people. There was just a huge need for this. I can imagine this fear for contamination lapsing into obsession over time. The origins of this obsession has never had anything to do with the shadow lord at all, though I do suspect that he did help a bit in making it worse.

That’s the thing I love about Deltora Quest, unlike other brainless shounen series like Gurren Lagann, this one actually makes you and it characters think about the situations and settings. Not even one event doesn’t get backed up or explained by others. Heck, even the Deus ex Machina make sense! You just know that Tira would come back after leaving Lief, Barda and Jasmine, simply because she forgot their swords. For once you can see a deus ex machina come because it makes sense, instead because of blatantly obvious storytelling. The same with Fillie, the Yurunai said that they sent Fillie into the tunnel, though the creature would be smart enough to actually hide and wait for Jasmine to come and pick him up. When he saw her in danger, he obviously wanted to defend her. And regarding the Dai-Master sneaking up in the tunnel, obviously a smack by Tira hurts, but she remains a little girl, and when she smacks you on the head with a frying pan, I can see that you’d only lose consciousness for a short while, when compared to a punch from Barda, for example.

There’s also one thing that makes Deltora Quest really unique among the shounen genre: the fact that killing off the big boss doesn’t mean the end of his subordinates as well. We already saw this when Thaegan was temporarily dead, but now we see this for real, as the Dai-Master won’t be getting up soon in the state he’s in. And still, the Yurunai are perfectly fine.

And also the food! I never expected to be such a deep meaning to it, when it gets sold back to Tom’s shop like that. And the strange thing is, I don’t recall Tom actually selling food at all. Also, how did the Yurunai get so much food to begin with? These questions will probably get answered in the next episode. It’s a shame you almost hear nobody about this series, but I’m glad that it’s actually being subbed.

Posted on 22 April 2007 with categories: Deltora Quest

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Short Synopsis: It’s now clear why the shopkeeper warned Lief not to take that road, it leads to the city of a very strange and strict religious civilization.
Good: If you’re looking for a fantasy-adventure anime: go for Deltora Quest.
Bad: Rather bad animation this time, but that can also be because of sloppy encoding or fansubbers.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10

It’s interesting. The new season brought us a lot of goodness, but none have been able to beat Deltora Quest on the fantasy-adventure part so far. I may have said this before, but I love how much thought has been put behind the different cases of the anime. This time, after having fallen off their “horses”, Lief, Barda and Jasmine are taken in by the Yurunai, who throw in a number of Kino no Tabi-vibes. They’re the perfect example of people clinging way too much to their religion. They believe everything should be clean, they abhor animals (bad news for Jasmine), and they keep repeating the same rituals over and over again. Especially the first part of the episode moves very slow, as they keep repeating “clean yurunai” over and over again.

This has been a regular pattern for Deltora quest. The first half of he case shows how the people behave, without showing any kind of bias, except from the different characters. That’s another thing I like about this anime. Even though you know who are going to be the good guys and the bad guys, the director doesn’t choose sides, unlike other anime, in which you can see a bad guy with an evil grin when nobody’s looking. Now that I mention it, I’ve always found such a plot event a bit lazy. It’s better than to give no sign of this at all, but when you see a character with such an evil smile, most often than not it’s included because it has to be included, and not because it fits in the storyline. Deltora Quest does a perfectly good job of merging these events with the storyline, so that it doesn’t need to send off lazy hints.

And another thing: chocolate. I was surprised to find out that the creators even added such a detail to this storyline. I never thought about it, but it does make sense that Lief has never had chocolate before in his life. Barda recognized it, because he once was in the palace, where it would have been perfectly possible to get the chance to eat some. It’s details like these that make this anime even better.

Posted on 15 April 2007 with categories: Deltora Quest

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Short Synopsis: Thaegan’s thirteen children come to take revenge for their mother; afterwards, Lief, Barda and Jasmine run into Tom’s shop.
Good: What the heck were the shopkeeper’s intentions?
Bad: Lief and Barda may have been a bit too gullible, but still: what the heck were the shopkeeper’s intentions?!
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10

I was secretly hoping for Shining Tears X Wind to be a bit like Deltora Quest, but unfortunately it decided to prefer fanservice and unexplained events above cleverly thought-out stories. I guess that Deltora Quest wll remain my main fantasy-adventure-fix for this season. It’s such a pity that I’m probably the only blogger who’s still watching this, as the series is quite good, and not at all like an all-fighting shounen anime.

Lots of things also happen in this episode. The scene of Thaegan’s children, beating each other up was quite intense, and good as well. For the first few episodes in this, I had my doubts, but this series has proved to feature some great climaxes. The second part of the episode also first seemed to be another trap Lief and Barda just walked in unsuspectingly, but I just can’t help but wondering what those intentions of the shopkeeper were. At first sight, he’s out to make a quick buck, but he does provide a couple of useful supplies, including horse-like creatures. And he does warn them of dangerous roads. But then again, he probably knew they wouldn’t listen to his advice. But on the other side, a serious-looking guy did buy the strange-looking rope without ever questioning him. Hrmm….

It’s also quite interesting that Thaegan’s children still don’t know that their mother has been brought back to life. I also wonder if they’re really dead now. I suspect not, due to one of the general rules of anime (which says, unless you actually see a character die, and it’s confirmed he’s really dead, he lives). Oh, and I’m glad to see that the music still is as awesome as ever

Posted on 2 April 2007 with categories: Deltora Quest

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Short Synopsis: Thaegan shows herself, and the lake shows to have more depth than originally assumed.
Good: Short but sweet. Just how I like it. :)
Bad: Seeing Thaegan get revived in the end was a tad disappointing
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10

Ah, this definitely was a great episode. I’m surprised but it seems that each arc will indeed be about three or four episodes long. Perfect for keeping up a steady pacing without getting dull or boring. The battles against Sorudeiin and Thaegan also were great. Instead of huge powers clashing, this episode is more about their characters than their powers. I loved the role of the flute for both of them. For Sorudeiin, it had a soothing effect, while for Thaegan it had an annoying effect.

It’s great to see that Deltora Quest puts many rules and twists inside the different items and characters. It’s great to play with these rules, if they’re creative enough. My only problem is the convenient full moon, and the effect this has on the Topaz which was revealed a tad too late. Still, it’s quite surprising that the people who have been abducted by Thaegan were actually turned into Sorudeiin, the statue and the fish inside the lake.

I loved Thaegan’s first death. I suspect that she’s going to play a big role as a mid-boss. I’d love to see some background from her side. I’m also curious about the next country that will be travelled to.

Posted on 27 March 2007 with categories: Deltora Quest

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Short Synopsis: Lief, Barda, Marasu and Jasmine head to to the city of Raradin, after which they reach the Nageki Lake, in order to collect the second gem.
Good: I still love how different this anime is from your usual adventure-anime; great cg.
Bad: Predictably, Lief is the only moderately annoying character.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10

Quite an interesting episode. In only 7 episodes, two gems will be collected. I’m looking forward to the fight next episode, as I’m interested to see how such a huge sea-monster can be defeated. Another thing I really liked is how Lief and the others have learned from the previous episode. During this episode, they’re extremely careful not to run into unnecessary danger. The Rara-tribe also shows quite an ingenious method to remain hidden from the Gray Guards. For also one of the first times ever, a wound actually remains for more than one episode, and it actually has to be healed. Quite interesting when you compare it with other anime, in which characters magically heal all of their wounds within ten seconds.

Sure, it may have cheesy elements, but the fact does remain that a lot of thought was put into the storyline. The only bad part is probably Lief. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a great character, but the fact does remain that he’s a bit annoying. Still, things could have been a lot worse. At least he’s not incredibly stupid, and he actually manages to use his head.

Posted on 13 March 2007 with categories: Deltora Quest

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Short Synopsis: Lief, Barda and Jasmine run into the trap of Nij and Doj, two of Tegan’s servants.
Good: Very refreshing, finally an adventure anime with the emphasis on using your head to get rid of the enemy.
Bad: I had a near-headdesk moment when Lief, Barda and Jasmine ran into the trap without noticing anything.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10

Ah, for the first time since the first episode I’ve been impressed again. The past few episodes were nice and all, but they were missing something. While this episode did have some annoying points, I still loved how both parties try to deceive their enemies. During the climax, Lief and Barda also didn’t just use their huge powers to slay the monsters. No, instead, they fled, and tried to eliminate them by disabling the path, which can be switched on and off.

I also loved the cross-references between the episode. I was wondering if the song of the last episode was some kind of introduction, and indeed it was. I’m suspecting that we’ll run into the eleven other children. Also, which raven has been swallowed by Tegan? I’m also curious about the frogs, the worms and the flees.

To make matters even better, the Tara-guy had a surprisingly heavy background. I assumed he couldn’t speak because he spoke a different language and didn’t even bother, but the voice of him and all his comrades has been sealed away by Tegan. Never knew that she would be this big. He also proved to be quite useful, instead of just acting like a random victim, or a person who gets to “see the light” because of our main characters.

Overall, I was right to chose to blog this series. It may have a few clichéd elements, but the rest of the anime more than makes up for it. It’s too bad that this series has been so incredibly neglected.

Still, I wish the fansubbers would proofread their releases a bit. At one point, they thought one of the monsters just talked gibberish at one point, they translated it as “bla bla bla”, with a note that he just “doesn’t say anything”, while it was in fact a sentence that even I could understand. Loosely translated, it’s something like “you’ll soon sleep forever”, which is why Lief suspected that they did something in the tea.

Posted on 10 March 2007 with categories: Deltora Quest

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Short Synopsis: Lief, Barda and Jasmine run into one of Tegan’s guards. Surprisingly, he uses riddles.
Good: Kree; Great to see enemies actually using riddles in a show of this nature.
Bad: Rather incompetent fansubbers; the guardian could have used a bit more background.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7.5/10

With this episode, I think it’ll be obvious why I decided to switch to the subbed versions. Seriously, I can follow what’s going on on the screen decently, but when an enemy actually uses word games and riddles, then it’s a definite sign for me that this isn’t an anime that I can watch raw. This anime also makes use of a number of very specific explanations, and without full understanding of what’s going on, it’s going to be hard to enjoy this anime to its fullest.

It’s just too bad that the fansubbers seem to either have insufficient English knowledge, or they just don’t know enough Japanese, as the translations are far from accurate. I wouldn’t be surprised if the lack of background from the guardian is because they missed a few details. Either that, or there’s some explanation about how he suddenly changed back to normal later in the anime. But ah well, you’ve at least to give them credit for trying, and subbing this anime in the first place. ;)

Anyway, I liked Kree’s back-story in this. The reason Jasmine was so reluctant to go to the lake was because of Tegan. The witch used to kill its entire family in her web (suggesting that she’s some kind of spider), and certain events in the episode suggested that she has no respect for animals whatsoever. Because of this, she sends him back to the forest. I still find her reason to join Lief and Barda a bit weak, though.

Posted on 21 January 2007 with categories: Deltora Quest

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Short Synopsis: Lief and Barda take on the first guardian with the Topaz, they witness his story, and his downfall. Jasmine also returns.
Good: A surprisingly huge amount of thought put behind the story of the forest and the guardian.
Bad: Lots of talking + my level of Japanese = X_X; Strange use of recycled scenes
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7/10

Deltora Quest keeps amazing me when it hugely deviates from your usual shounen-adventure with its well-developed characters and thought-out plot. Despite the concept, this anime cleverly stays away from all of the clichés that plague this genre, and delivers a great tale about Lief, set out to collect the seven gems.

I was surprised when I learned that the guardian had an actual back-story. When he appeared during the previous episode, I just expected he was a brainless goon, and that this episode would focus a basic fight. Boy, was I wrong. During the fight, it seems that he’s been protecting something else. I couldn’t pick up everything, but this is what I think what went on:

In the middle of the forest, there are some flowers which can produce the elixir of life. When the gems were stolen, this guardian was sent to that place, in order to protect it, along with his three comrades. When they saw the flowers, though, they started to fight about them, and the guardian ended up killing his two comrades. Over time, he began to get confused about his original goal, and in the end, he told himself he had to protect the flowers, instead of the gem. I’m not sure why he didn’t know who Adin was, though. It seemed like he’s been there for a lot longer than 16 years…

It also seems that Jasmine has been after these flowers for some time, and she finally got the chance to get it when Lief and Barda arrived. She’s interesting, as you wouldn’t expect her to be the one to save Lief and Barda. It often goes the other way around when the main female lead turns into your usual damsel in distress.

The next gem seems to be hidden inside a lake. Probably the water-country. In there, there’s a fearsome witch. She’s apparently famous, as even Jasmine has heard of her, and she’s been living alone for almost her entire life. It seems like she’s going to be quite interesting, perhaps even more than the armoured one we saw in this episode.

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  • Bam
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 07:08 AM)
    @Kaiser: I warned you about Eva and what it would ensue. I honestly think the original series is an unfinished mess of hodgepodge ideas, but among the heap of imperfection was a true spark of genius that is worth more than a million cookie-cutter shows that are ‘perfectly adequate’. I also don’t disliked Nasu either, that’s why I used the haters of them as seemingly one group of anti-intellect Shonen fan fodder.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 07:02 AM)
    Wait … wtf? I leave for a bit to drink some absinthe with ‘re m8s and watch few F/Z episodes and they think we’re salty at eachother? And they call us petty? Gimme a break. We get into arguments all the time, but have a level of mutual respect. And then before they use to called us a den of circle-jerkers who just agree wot eachother and enforce our biases. Seriously, wtf?
  • reaLjustified
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 06:31 AM)
    @Mike Unfortunately, I’m thinking about dropping Fuuka. Not that I’m not a fan of Kouji, but this one is just…too uninteresting to me. The drama and characters are almost all uninteresting besides Fuuka, and Kouji killed her off near the start…
  • mike
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 06:05 AM)
    @Kaiser I remember Aku no Hana’s anime adaptation being very controversial, what with the rotoscoping.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 05:55 AM)
    I always saw aku no hana as more of a trainwreck/dark comedy, the manga at least, first and foremost.
  • reaLjustified
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 05:54 AM)
    @;( I had to motivate myself to read through that series at first because the protagonist was so unlikable.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 05:51 AM)
    Maybe things helped, but that creative person always existed in these people.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 05:50 AM)
    I guess what I am saying here is that Anno, Lynch, Jodorsky , Von Trier Gilliam may not have required crazy/drugs to be as creative as they are.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 05:47 AM)
    I bring this up because I recall my aunt saying that initially she felt if she stopped drinking the creativity would go away, but she ended up being wrong and now claims it was always in her.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Sep 5. 2015 05:46 AM)
    Off topic, but I really meant to bring it up earlier, really really is the creative process truly helped by substance abuse or madness or is it really just always there in certain people before those two things even enter the picture.

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