Bakemonogatari

Alt titles: A Monster Story

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kenikki's avatar By kenikki on Oct 19, 2009

Story: 4/10

This is basicly a harem show (Clanned or Air or somthing similar) mixed with xxxHOLiC. Although it takes Bakemonogatari around 3 episodes to do what xxxHOLiC does in one, and xxxHOLiC still does it better. I know I shouldn’t compare them, but I just can’t help it here since it REALLY reminds of xxxHOLiC all the time.

Also, it’s not exactly like most harems since most females don’t pursue him in a romantic way (even though it’s hinted at it with some/most of them), but it’s definitely set up like a harem. It’s one guy that helps out girls one by one in their own specific arc and is in the end surrounded by them.

If you ask me, the unique art directing is most probably used to hide that the show itself in fact isn’t unique at all.

If I wouldn’t be so interested in these kinds of supernatural stories to begin with the score would be MUCH lower.

Animation/Artwork/Visual Effects: 8/10

This part of the show is good in itself, but it isn’t used very well most of the time. There are plenty of unnecessary movements used throughout the series. Like the classic “shaking-ones-head-to-make-the-said-statement-appear-more-dramatic”, although, if you ask me, it does the exact opposite. It just ridiculous.Then we have the general directing which is very similar to an opening from “Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei” series. I’m comparing it to an opening and not the actual show because it’s much “wilder” than the actual SZS series and it doesn’t even fit with this show like it does with SZS.

That said, it does have some great shots here and there, and the fight scene with the “monkey” looks absolutely great.

The OP/ED had great animation

Sound: 6/10

The voice actors all did a good job, nothing real to complain about, even though I don’t think that Hiroshi Kamiya (Nozomu Itoshiki from SZS) really fits as Araragi. But I do think that Chiwa Saitō did a great job as Senjoughara.

The BGM is very inconsistent. Sometimes it’s great music, but it doesn’t fit with what’s going on, other times the music is just lame. But there are a few times when it works great. So overall it’s quite avarage.

The OP songs were never particularly good, but I liked the ED song.

Characters: 4/10

Araragi is alot like any other harem male lead. He’s a bit better than most though since he has some special background story which makes him more than the faceless male lead that usually inhabits harems. But his behaviour is very close to the usual type. Araragi is also one of the reasons why I keep thinking of Clannad and Air because those shows also have male leads with slightly special background stories that act pretty much like the usual male harem lead. They’re all still below avarage as characters though. Mayoi is the incredibly common yelling and fighting tsundere loli and Nadeko is the shy and helpless loli. Both incredibly cliché and uninteresting. We also have the “dignified” class-rep, Hanekawa, and the cheery sports girl, Kanbaru. Although thanks to some pretty nice and unexpected character development Hanekawa isn’t completely uninteresting and Kanbaru turns out pretty nice. Unfortunately, they’re still not all that good and I actually felt that Hanekawa could’ve been more fleshed out. Then we have the little sisters. We can’t have a harem set-up without some cute younger sisters now, can we? They didn’t even need them in the show. They used them as a way for Araragi to have some backstory with the snake girl, but that could’ve easily been done in another way. Senjoughara on the other hand is a pretty well crafted character, even if I didn’t like her personally. She was too much of a bitch for me, even if we got a good reason for why she acted the way she did. One thing I didn’t understand was why she carried arround all that hidden stuff in the beginning. Wouldn’t the staple be enough? I do gotta say that the staple thing was something I really found interesting though. That and the other characters personal objects which identified them with their “hidden nature”. Hitagi's staple - the claw of a crab, Mayoi's back pack - the shell of a snail, Kanbaru's leggings - Sarumata ('Saru' means monkey), and Nadeko's big hat and baggy jacket - the head and skin of a snake. Althought to be honest, I got this information after I finished this show and the previous information comes directly from Wikipedia. That doesn’t mean it’s not an interesting thing, even if it didn’t add any enjoyment to the show seeing as how I didn't see it when I watched the show.

Anyway, Senjoughara is pretty good, kanbaru is pretty entertaining in some aspects, Hanekawa has some redeeming facts even though she is close to the bottom, Araragi isn’t completely worthless as a character, but he isn’t far off either, Nadeko is very uninteresting but isn’t THAT annoying, Mayoi is incredibly annoying, cliché and generally uninteresting and the sisters are useless except for crappy fanservice although not for anything ecchi, just as imagination stereotypes.

Oh, I forgot about two characters; Shinobu and Oshino. Well, Shinobu is just used for backstories, she’s a bit interesting, but just as a mystery. She’s basicly nothing seeing as how she gets no character development. Oshino was just a very inferior version of Yuuko from xxxHOLiC.

The characters faults annoyed me much more than their positive sides entertained me. The only reason this didn’t get a bottom score is because of the personal object thing and the slight enjoyment from Kanbaru and Senjoughara. Although, even if Senjoughara is the most entertaining character, shouldn’t Araragi be the person on most of the posters and stuff, seeing as he is in fact the main character – not Senjoughara.

But I gotta say that if I did like the show for some reason I would probably try to think more of their good sider than their bad sides. But as it is, this is the only way I can view these characters.

Overall: 4.5/10

I didn’t like it at all. Like I’ve stated before, alot from this show reminded me of xxxHOLiC and this show is inferior in every aspect except for the quality of the A/A/V. The fact that I dislike harem shows deals another great blow to this series. The dialogue wasn’t the least bit witty to me and it irritated me much more than it entertained me with lines like “Hey Ararararagi.” “Wait, you added 2 extra ra to my name.” I mean, what the hell is that. They even use the same kind of joke several times. But they then did it like; “wait, you removed a ra from my name”. It was just sad.

If it weren’t for my love of supernatural shows this would get a bottom score.

4/10 story
8/10 animation
6/10 sound
4/10 characters
4.5/10 overall
meowmixgypsy's avatar By meowmixgypsy on Feb 28, 2013

     Bakemonogatari is either amazing or a let down depending on what you start the anime looking for. If you're looking for a creepy supernatural anime with heavy plot and adventure, you will probably find this anime to be very dull. However, if you start this anime looking for moe girls and cuteness, you will likely be thrilled by the supernatural sub-plot and gorgeous animation.

Story (Not the worst)
The story is broken up into five arcs, each focusing on an individual character. As you would expect, there are some sub-plots more interesting then others. The stories told behind all abnormalities affecting the girls are fascinating and add a layer of character development. While this show is moe-harem thinly masked by it's supernatural atmosphere, it erases alot of the genres cliches. The protagonist is not a pathetic wimp, and he picks a girl right away, while there is flirtation bewteen him and the others, you know where his heart lies. Bakemonogatari also has much more plot and substance then most harem anime. My biggest complaint story wise, is in such a short series, having filler episodes with the characters doing nothing but talking is frustrating. Especially because most of these conversations, while funny at times, are not very memorable and feel like a waste of an episode.


Animation (Eyegasm)
Some people complain about studio Shaft being "cheap" and taking shortcuts, by using cuts and using live-action bits, and how static talking scenes are. However, I say poo-poo to them, because those factors added to the already gorgeous art work. The character designs were gorgeous, the lighting and coloration added to the atmosphere, and the few fight scene that were in there were beautiful. And the scenery made you wish you were there. This anime is an AMV makers wet dream. This is the type of anime you can pause at random parts and you will not find the hilariously awkward stretched out pieces of characters and badly drawn facial expressions. Every frame of this show is art.

Sound (Delicious)
This anime has five openings, one for each heroine. Me being the sucker for girly music I am, fell madly in love with the second opening "Kaerimichi" and even moreso for the danceable "Renai Circulation" while the others are good, I don't find them as catchy as the other OPS. I also thought the ED sounded very pretty.
The background music wasn't particularily wowing aside from a couple songs and seeing as the show was mostly talking, the background music wasn't relied on heavily.
I can't think of a seeiyu I didn't like in this show, I also liked the lack of extras. There is never any speaking roles aside the main characters, which added an oddly intimate atmosphere.

Characters (Likeable)
I absolutely loved all the characters until I wrote a review. Why? All the characters are likeable, they are cute and all have personality quirks that make you fawn over them. Not to mention all their designs are gorgeous. However, if you look at this show analytically, all the shows are moe-moe cliches. A tsundere, a loli, a tomboy, a moe blob, the unlucky friend, and the imouto-chans, inspite of the cliches, the character still managed to be semi-unique. The supernatural feel and their own tales of suffering make them seem well developed, and some of them are. But most fell flat in the depth department. Regardless, they all had interesting stories and magnetic personalities, and I like them, even if they aren't all the best developed characters.

Over-all
While this anime had its flaws (their biggest crime were the fillers), it's still one of my all time favorite. I personally give it 9.5/10, however, in an unbiased review I give it 8/10, the art and sound do not disappoint, the characters are all pretty likeable, and a fascinating premise if you can handle the slow pace.

7/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
7/10 characters
8/10 overall
Zonda96's avatar By Zonda96 on Jul 21, 2011

This was a pretty good anime that I have recently have finished watching. I felt that the characters were somewhat bland and 2 dimensional. I felt that the told us nothing about the main character and how be became a vampire they should have made it longer and went into detail about that. I think they should have expanded upon the relationship between the main character and his girlfriend so that it would have made it feel more completed. I also think they should have expanded and finished the subplots they started such as the main character finding a college. Overall this was enjoyable and funny anime but its just too bland and loose to become a great or good anime. I recommend this anime as a good time waster it may not be the best anime but it could have been better if they just extended the series a bit.

6/10 story
8/10 animation
9/10 sound
6/10 characters
7/10 overall
MrChearlie's avatar By MrChearlie on Feb 3, 2013

Mi Inglish Is Tirrible but I'm trying my best, so my apologies if there is any error, I should fix them as soon as I notice them.

The Good Part:

  • Animation is so stylish!
  • Sounds weird, but it is actually a good part, the fanservice has a relevance to the characters.
  • The characters were great on a hopeless plot.

The Bad Part:

  • I really like this part, but a lot of people find it annoying, that is, the characters are talking all the time and sometimes about things that aren't so relevant.
  • This show is just good because the fan-service and the animation, without this all, most of character flavor will disapear, and the story is nothing.

Story (Bad)

A vampire, a lame one, like those of twilight but less absurd, the only thing that makes him a vampire is that he regenarates and he attracts girls who have being possesed by creatures like cats or snails and this isn't comical relief, even if it sounds silly it is actually something serious. The vampire, who is really the classical boy who is a little insecure and naive; feels like helping all these girls to get rid of the diabolical spirits. Despite of having his Harem he chooses his girl in the very first episodes.

So that's it.... No matter how I see it, it is bad, except some cool symbolism and interesting mythologies. but thinking better, If you have a girl with lots of courage it would be possessed by a lion, so the girl would star biting people and growl, that's how the this anime works, they give the burden to the character so he is in charge of everything.

Animation (Great)

I watched a trailer of Nekomonogatari and my first thoughs were, this looks like a pretentious shit but the animation is so beautiful.... I must.... resist.... oh, before this goes Bakemonogatari... must... resist... Okay I have time. I don't regret it at all, all the time I was having a visual delight. It was minimalistic most of the time but I was always amazed despite of the simplicity that sometimes it has. This is a lot of factor of taste to be honest, I'm pretty sure many won't agree that is that awesome, but it is good that is for sure. 

I would go for superb but, it really isn't that great, some people didn't liked some flashes of colors and phrases, I actually like them, but it's totally comprehensible that many would be annoyed by this. Have to add that sometimes they use very static  images while there are tons of dialogues on the background and this last for a lot of time, which I count as it biggest flaw on this area.

Character desing was very good, they are all simple but unique and stylish! so they manage to have a very memorable image.

Sound (Good)

5 openings, that's a good thing for a show of 13 episodes. Other than this, the music was always fitting, it wasn't exelent but  most of the time I was like "Hey I like this background music, it is cool", Sounds is also very well done despite of not having many uses since the characters are almost always speaking.

And well, a show were everyone speaks all the time, it would be terrible if they had bad voice actors, but, they were great, a little cheesy but so as well the characters. I never got tired despite of so much dialogue.

Characters (Good)

For what it was, the characters did a phenomenal job. You have almost no story and this wasn't a slice of life since it always followed a lame plot . This was the only key to make it good and they take it... with FAN SERVICE!... really?... Oh YEAH! I'm not really a fan of the fan-service, I really hate it most of the times, but this time it wasn't just for the fanboys to get excited and buy a lot of figurines for "unknown" reasons (yes, it is in part adressed for that kind of audience.) but it also affected the characters, all the sexual details stand out the characters personality, every ecchi scene the girl reacted according to her personality and to the situation, and the ecchi scenes were allways detonated by the plot. Could they make this show good in different ways? nooooooo, it is a man surrounded by 5 girls and nothing of story, it is logic that there is some sexual tension between them, why take it away, that would destroy it. But, despite of using fan-service, they at least make it subtle, for an ecchi show (there is a scene with a loli almost naked so don't take my "subtle" so literal). What I mean is that they don't bring it up everytime, if they are talking about a train they don't focus the camera on the boobs, but a train, so this Fan-Service was most of the time plotwise.

Okay... After expressing my feelings about how fan-service can be good I have to add some other  factors that help the character, and it was... the dialogue, they are always talking, and even when they are talking about boring stuff, the way they talk really makes you to understand the character behaviour, the conversation barely sound forced since the characters are rarely out of character and just following the conversation just like you would do with a person when you are giving your opinion about how fan-service can be good. It ends being your opinion and not the opinion of the author.

And the openings, there were 5 openings, one for each girl, the music and the animation were for you to understand more about the character point of view of her life. So they give you three big factors to make great characters, unfortunately they are all stereotypes, despite that, they were made to be memorable. Congratulations for surviving a stupid plot.

And one important thing I forgot to mention, this is a quite interesting harem since it is not the classic were everyone is in love with the main character. And the few ones that are in love with him have valid reasons so Kudos for that.

 Enjoyment (Average)

If it wasn't by the visual delight this anime had, I would have never finish it, is not that bad, but it has nothing more to show, the characters manage to survive but despite of this they aren't that good, so beside animation there is only one reason someone would stay watching this, and it is fan-service (I had to admit, it awake my kinky side a little) but still, I am no really into fan-service.

So the show is entertaining but at the same time is meh.

Overall (Good)

3/10 story
8.5/10 animation
7/10 sound
7/10 characters
6.1/10 overall
Quizap's avatar By Quizap on Aug 18, 2010

Awesome story arcs. Senjougahara is awesome. Araragi’s thoughts and comments are hilarious along with his actions and reactions to various things throughout the series. A lot was left unanswered but I’m hoping the 3 internet episodes answer most of them. Kanbaru is indeed a very kinky individual, she’s very honest with everything. Hanekawa and her “meowhahaha” was great, I can’t get enough of it. The last 3 episodes were by far the best of the bunch. Love Hanekawa quite a bit <3. Overall, a great anime.

?/10 story
?/10 animation
?/10 sound
?/10 characters
8.5/10 overall