Thursday, July 5, 2007

Review: Sola

I went into this anime with hopeful eyes. I can admit it. I wanted to like it. After all, one of the guy who wrote it is the same guy who wrote Kanon, Naoki Hisaya. Anyways, Sola is a multimedia event. In addition to the anime, they are also producing a manga, a drama CD, an internet radio show, and even rumors of a PS2 game. Hey, if they can milk it, they should.

Onto the plot... on second thought, go look here for the plot, but be warned, it's Wikipedia and there are spoilers in the description.

In the end, the plot is a fun ride, and the season had two fundamental aspects, the action plot and the love plot. In theory, both plots revolved around Yurito, but though he's the POV character, I think it would be more accurate to say that Matsuri is the protagonist. Anyways, the villain for each of the plots are Takeshi and Aono respectively.

Additionally, all the subplots were fun as well, though I could have used a bit more backstory, but overall that's a minor quibble. My biggest complaint with the series is that some of the surprises which are introduced over the course of the story could have been hinted at some more. In fact the big surprise of the story, I'm still not 100% clear just how Matsuri figured it out. I had no clue it was going to happen, and going back and watching the entire season one episode after another, I still fail to see any hints of it. I guess I could just be missing something, and if I am, I would love for someone to point it out to me.

The cast is relatively small. The main characters are Yorito Morimiya, Matsuri Shihō, Aono Morimiya, Mana Ishizuki, Koyori Ishizuki, Takeshi Tsujido and Mayuko Kamikawa. Like I said, it's not an overly large cast, so that they all get decent enough time to develop their characters. Of particular interest is the relationship between Aono and Koyori, at the start of the series, they're in the hospital together (which is also where Yorito and Mana meet at). The relationship is an interesting one, as Koyori really cares about Aono , much more than the other characters, and with the events at the end of the series, is subsequently hurt worse, and healed more, than the other characters as well.

Art-wise, and character designs, I prefer what was produced for Kanon over this, but since the character designer was Naru Nanao who worked on D.C. ~Da Capo~, the characters resemble those found in that series. Frankly, I think I prefer Kanon's artists. Not that these are bad, they're just not quite as good, as they have a tendency towards rail thin, sharp, pointed chins and slightly misporportioned bodies.

In the end, I enjoyed the story, but was less excited by the artwork. I give it a 3 out of 4.

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