Anime Music of Christmases (Long) Past

Unlike the iconic Dickens novel, I do mean long-past. I won’t be talking about special vocal albums like the Marimite Christmas album either, as hilarious as it is. No, for the purposes of this entry, I’m going to focus more on compositions or instrumental arrangements that channel the spirit of Christmas.

Back when I started watching anime, it never occurred to me that Japan would embrace the holiday to the point that they’d roll out their own Christmas tunes; up to that point, my experience with “foreign” Christmas music was mostly confined to “Feliz Navidad” and Asian-language variations of popular Christmas carols. It wasn’t until I finally watched Nadesico that I realized, to a mixture of horror and delight, that Japanese Christmas music is just as cheesy and unbearable as those commonly heard over here in the States! [Read more...]

ef – a tale of memories – Review

Title: ef – a tale of memories
Episodes: 12
Company: SHAFT
Genre(s): Romance, Drama
Air Dates: 7 Oct 2007 – 23 Dec 2007

Synopsis: Hiro Hirono is a high school student who also works drawing manga. Unfortunately, in doing so, he’s had to skip out on school quite a bit to meet the deadlines. Enter Kei Shindo, Hiro’s childhood friend who tries to look out for Hiro’s well-being. However, her hold over Hiro is being challenged by Miyako Miyamura, a free-spirited girl who also has a habit of skipping school. Together, these three form what is essentially the first love triangle of the series.

The second story centers on Renji, a boy in middle school who befriends Chihiro Shindo, Kei’s twin sister and a girl whose eye is blind due to an accident and cannot remember anything that’s occurred more than 13 hours before. In spite of this Renji works hard to see her every day and together, the two start to undertake a project to begin writing a novel. Although Chihiro cannot remember long enough to ensure that the story will run coherently from one page to the next, it’s with the hope that by collaborating with Renji, she will be able to fulfill her dream of becoming a novelist.

Pros:

  • Extremely good use of camera work
  • Tenmon once again delivers a good soundtrack along with the OP and ED themes
  • Excellent use of symbolism throughout the series

Cons:

  • Use of cliches is somewhat annoying
  • Some of the characters are difficult to like
  • [Read more...]

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