Barakamon

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ZaveVG's avatar By ZaveVG on Sep 27, 2014

Recently, a quote from famous anime director Hayao Miyazaki of Studio Ghibli opened many anime fans to discussion on what truly makes an anime. He stated “If you don’t spend time watching real people, you can’t do this, because you’ve never seen it.” while drawing a vivid image of a young girl during a discussion regarding the state of the anime industry in modern times. Barakamon is a stellar example of an anime in recent times created with love and care for the characters it portrays.
The characters in this show all have very strong and realistic personalities which are conveyed through the antics which take place in the story. This is the kind of anime where while it takes place on an island in Japan, you can relate to the reactions and scenarios because the things that Handa is subjected to are actually sort of realistic. It's a great story that has been done before in one way or another, but the characters are truly what pulls this anime forward. You can tell that the person who created this story is not just an industry otaku, but someone who legitimately watches people and wanted to create a cast of great characters.

The art is pretty average, yet nice stylistically. The soundtrack is excellent, everything from the background music to the excellent opening and ending themes. This is a case of an anime that has the perfect opening and ending themes for the mood of the show.

I can imagine that somewhere out there there is a hyper girl named Naru who constantly pesters a jaded calligrapher named Handa who is in the process of finding happiness in life. This is a heartwarming slice of life that goes beyond the sum of it's parts and creates one of the greatest slice of life comedy anime in recent years.

Sound: 4.5/5 (Excellent)
Plot: 3.5/5 (Good)
Characters: 5/5 (Awesome)
Art: 3/5 (Pretty Good)
Lasting Appeal: 4/5 (Great)
Overall: 4.5/5 (Excellent)

8/10 story
8/10 animation
9/10 sound
10/10 characters
9/10 overall
harshrox2's avatar By harshrox2 on Sep 22, 2014

This series is overall a nice slice of life about a calligrapher handa seishu who smacked the director of all japan calligraphy assosiation and as a result he was forced to move to an island out of nowhere to improve his art, when he have lived his whole life in city  .It is a story of how he improves his art while interacting with all the villagers , and understand fun of living with society ........

Plot wise it is a nice story with good opening act and a great follow through it have its bunch of funny moments which unlike recent tradition of comedy it is not ecchi, so it is kind of clean comedy which is sort of fresh breath.It is fun to watch how the interaction of Naru with handa makes some moments delightful, while delusion of glasses are also quiet funny.If I compare it to any series which is delightful & comic at the same time , only silverspoon comes to my mind. Though its ending seems kinda rushed which makes me feel unsatisfied. well it is also one of its charm (to tell a great story in a inmum span of 12 episodes).

Animation is one of its relatively weak point , though I will not say it is was bad , rather it suits the story perfectly but it is still lacking compared to other fronts of the anime, like background are kinda a plain, which is good but not vivid, character design was average except the main cast ,overall it was a decent art but not something noteworthy.

Sound and Character Design are its strongest point the , opening and ending theme are both nice , even ost are good and fits perfectly with the situation , also voice of voice actos are great and seems to fit the characters perfectly escpecially the role of naru. charcter are great and unique nothing more to say about them , they each have there own personality which are able to connect with the viewer and that is this anime's strongest point (though design wise they are some what lacking especially side characters).

Overall it is a decent anime which everyone should watch atleast once it gave a fresh breath of air to the viewer who is watching this series after watching all those main stream genre of extreme shounen action and mindless comedy.Though it is a slice of life , it is not a tear jerker type of story so it is kinda nice innovation in the genre of slice of life.

If you see this review helpful or you want to suggest any thing ,please comment below.

Edit: This a new raking of an onlie streaming site which asked about best summer anime :http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/interest/2014-10-02/nico-nico-users-rank-the-hottest-anime-from-summer-2014/.79490

HARSHROX2

8.5/10 story
8/10 animation
9.5/10 sound
9/10 characters
8.7/10 overall
kidkonseptual's avatar By kidkonseptual on Oct 8, 2014

This was originally a recap on the finale (containing spoilers) as well as the following final impressions. You can read the post on my website found here.

Barakamon title screen.
Barakamon title screen.

Barakamon is a show about a pretentious, sheltered and impulsively violent artist from Tokyo. This will be a shorter “final impressions’ than I normally write up, because honestly, there’s not much to say. Both all the reasons why I enjoyed and would recommend this, as well as my criticisms of the series, are minor at best.

So, what’s Barakamon really about? I already told you, lol. The artist, Handa Seishu, has an altercation over his calligraphy. His family and friend pretty much send him away tonaru_04 somewhere in the Gotou islands, where he meets the wacky southern villagers, particularly the youths of the village.

The series begins in pretty standard “fish out of water” fashion. Handa has to deal with various country life issues like having to actually cook food, walk to the general store to make a phone call, manually heat his bath, etc. It’s really nothing we haven’t seen before a hundred times, but it’s entertaining, mainly due to the likeable characters, which I’ll get to in a minute.

It moves away from the outsider theme and morphs into a life lesson of the week themed series pretty quickly. Each week, with a few exceptions, Handa learns something about himself or something about life, usually by way of the friends he makes on the island.

Handa and friends spent after the beach episode.
Handa and friends spent after a day at the beach.

That’s pretty much it for the story. In my amateur opinion, If the characters were less then excellent, this series would have been instantly forgettable. Thankfully the characters created by Satsuki Yosino and fleshed out in their manga are as good as they are, especially all the villagers and supporting characters in general.

Without specifics, Handa who was sheltered and didn’t experience much of a childhood, is bright eyed around the laid back and generally fun loving children on the island. This includes the two middle school girls Miwa and Tamako, the high school aged, even tempered Hiroshi and the younger grade school aged kids, led by the ultimate rugrat, Naru.

All the kids are great and over the course of the series, we get to know each of them (some more than others) and all have a great impact on the protagonist. Through these friendships he’s able to change direction in his artistic endeavors, while starting to enjoy life a bit.

Naru and Hina are great real kids.
Naru and Hina are great real kids.

Everything extraneous to the plot is filled with quality. Of particular note was the voice acting of the actual children on the show, especially Naru and Hina. While the character designs were nice and faithful to the manga, they’re pretty standard. The voice acting, sort of like how the charatcers are written, raise the quality of the series overall. Here’s a clip of Naru and Hina — voiced by real children — making fun of a poetically contemplating Handa.

[Audio should work here]

I can’t really say enough about the characters, so I won’t say anything, except that they’re a lot of fun to watch. Not just fun, but they’re very warm as well. Ok, so the story is ok, but
is made a lot better by the characters and the production is ok, but is made a lot better naru_03
by the voice acting. Was there anything I didn’t particularly like? Yes, of course. I’m impossible to please.

First, the Handa Seishuu character is a giant man child. That fact is the entire catalyst of the show. It’s generally a coming of age story for a 23 year old man, who’s been a mental case for most of his life. This is easy to get past while watching, don’t get me wrong. But if you knew a 23 year old constantly hanging around a group of kids, you’ve be alarmed. I don’t mean for anything devious or criminal, but just for that person’s general mental state.

Handa is essentially a giant man child.
Handa is essentially a giant man child.

The other main thing, which in the end held me up writing this final impressions post, is the entirely predictable nature of the show. Future episodes, as well as the ending, are really easy to spot from a mile away. Earlier on, the series is more episodic — Handa and the kids do A, B, or C, or Handa participates in local custom X, Y or Z.

The show begins to move slightly away from that, getting back to the main story, in which we can see Handa apply the life lessons he’s learned while on the island. I was looking forward to returning to the overarching plot, but immediately realized I knew what was going to happen, because there’s no way anything else could have happened.

Miwa, Tamako, Naru make memories with fireworks.
Miwa, Tamako, Naru make memories with fireworks.

That could just have been me though, or people who look for that type of thing. Honestly, if I wasn’t recapping this show all season, I would have just sat there and watched it. In the end though, I am glad I wrote about this show all season.

I initially wanted to give Barakamon a score of 3.5 out of 5. My final rating is a 4 out of however. What finally bumped it up, was my mistaking some of the simplicity of the series for unoriginality or perhaps just crapatality. I just made that word up. Anyway — yeah, "really creative" doesn’t always mean better.

scale-4

Would I recommend Barakamon? Of course! I would especially recommend this series, essentially a shounen series where the main character levels up his maturity, to people who aren’t too familiar with the slice-of-life genre.

Did I ever think about dropping this? Uhm… nope, never. That’s it everyone. If you haven’t watched this yet, put it on your list. At 12 episodes it’s extremely easy to watch. If you have seen it, I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did!

Thanks for reading my Barakamon reviews!
Thanks for reading my Barakamon reviews!

6/10 story
5/10 animation
9/10 sound
10/10 characters
8/10 overall
rbjr73's avatar By rbjr73 on Oct 5, 2014

What makes this anime good is is not the special effects or the overhypedness of such shows...it's the simple  nature of the story telling from beginning to end... along with the fact that every episode you will have that killer laugh the will leave you smiling from ear to ear...Just watch the show!!!!!!!!! You will not regret it!

7/10 story
8/10 animation
7/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
shadowarai's avatar By shadowarai on Jul 31, 2014

First impressions based on ep´s 1-4(contains small spoilers)

when searching for the ep´s not even once I managed to write the title correctly...oh well I like it anyway..

  • Story: I love it! At first it didn´t catch my interest at all but it got more and more interesting as I continued watching.
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  • Animation: Well..it´s all nice and clean but nothing special

  • Sound: It´s ok; the OP song is kinda catchy^^

  • Characters: I love every. single. one. of them
  1. Seishuu Handa(main chara): ohohooo he´s an ikeman(ikemen?)*wink-wink* who´s really passionate about finding his own calligraphy style so he won´t be looked down by other calligraphers..i think..?
  2. Naru(other main chara): local kid who used to hand out with her friends in Handa´s house when it was empty...well actually she still hangs out in that house and diturbs Handa>.< She´s really funny and cheerful girl!
  3. Other kids: each of them has interesting personality like fujoshi-Tamako and her brother Akihiko who secretly admires Handa, Hina who always cries and Kentaro who reminds me of these kids I always see at countryside c:
  4. The villagers: They are so kind and funny people; I love it how they´re really alike to the usual folks you meet at the countryside and the way they all talk..it kinda sound like..Kansai dialect..? IT´S AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Overall: I love it! Make sure to watch this^^
8/10 story
5/10 animation
5/10 sound
10/10 characters
8/10 overall