Ok, first I'll admit this piece of review will be one of the most biased things you'll ever read because, when you look into my profile, you'll see that it's my 2nd top favorite anime. I usually try to be objective, but really whenever I think about this anime I only see awesome in it, but anyway here goes:
I usually just leave story unrated because, as I like moe, slice-of-life anime, they usually don't even have a real story at all, and to be frank they don't need it. As for Girls und Panzer, the whole story can be summed up at this:
WARNING! SPOILERS AHEAD!
"Miho messed up in the last Senshadou Tournament Finals and costed her school the victory (...in order to save a drowning teammate)! She's so shamed that she decided to move to a small school without Senshadou. There's just one problem: the school's so small it's going to be closed unless it has an epic victory, so its Student Council President re-opened Senshadou and forced Miho to join, where she must command her school to victory in this year's tournament in order to save her new school as well as prove her worth to her own family (which she eventually succeeded)!"
Not sure what you think, but I personally think the animation in this series is perfect. Sure it may not be as shiny as, say, KyoAni's moe masterpieces, but it works. I reckon it'd look pretty strange if everything looks dreamy and brilliant to the Clannad level, but it's gorgeous in its own ways. The characters look cute, the scenery looks vivid, and I couldn't find any imperfection in the animation itself, especially the tanks', they are just glorious yet so believable (except for the speed buff in everything but uh... that's another story).
This anime has some of the best songs and soundtracks I've heard, the glorious OP DreamRiser for example, and I'm not even very fond of marching music. Besides, the sounds the tanks make (tracks sound, turret traverse sounds, GUN sounds, oh the gun sounds...) are all pleasing to the ears, I can understand perfectly well why "Firing the tank's cannon for the first time is shown to be intensely pleasurable for Saori, Hana, and Yukari" (according to TVTropes). As for the voice acting, I'm not so good at analyzing that, but I'll just say none of the voices sounded annoying or fake to me. My only qualm is that Shirou remixed the main theme (apparently called "Panzer vor!" if I'm right) a little too much.
Ok, most reviews before me said that the characters weren't too interesting and were shallow, but consider this: It's a 12-episode anime, with 4 fully-shown tank battles lasting 2-3 episodes each, plus a training match. See? It's not like those overly-long action animes where you can "develop" your characters however much you want because you always have time. And then, GuP has a LARGE BUNCH of characters, since there're many teams and each team (if you count each rival school as a single team, then there're TWELVE teams in total, and I'm not counting Anzio) is composed of 3-5 chars. The very fact that not many of them are copies of one another at all is already a merit.
And yet, it manages to be quite the opposite, while the characters are not deep in overly-complicated ways like you often see in long action or drama animes, their traits were executed quite well. They're not all Ms. Troubled Life, but they're who they are.
WARNING! SPOILERS AHEAD!
Yukari is a tank nut who's extremely loyal to Miho, Miho is a gentle yet genius strategist, Saori is someone with a good tongue who's crazy about love, Mako is a lazy-as-s...eh...sloth genius, Anzu is an extremely easy-going manager who actually cares a lot about her teammates and always micro-managing everything in the background for the best, Momo is extremely loud yet considerate and determined, Darjeeling is someone who always act elegant and tell nice-sounding quotes even her best friend can't understand, Karina is a shy and a bit noisy girl but is also actually quite passionate when her teammates are concerned, and the list goes on...
Some of the characters' eh... character are fleshed out in just one single scene, and sometimes that's all she needs.
The tanks battles actually gave me some of the best thrills in my life that normal action animes couldn't, and I enjoyed it all while assured that none of the characters will actually be harmed (because I'm just that much of a coward and a light-hearted person, plus none of the characters deserve to be harmed), since there was an explanation on how no one can actually be killed in the sport (although I gotta admit that was a half-assed explanation that kinda came out of nowhere, but hey at least there's an explanation that at least sounds plausible).
Plus, the breathers episode were well placed and very relaxing, plus they helped a lot with character development, like a true slice-of-life anime. I hated how everyone just rated this anime with action criteria, since this is clearly an action-sports-slice-of-life hybrid.
Oh, and I said it gave the kind of thrills normal action animes couldn't. You know why? Because everything was handled realistically. Ok, it may not be too realistic when the exact specs of the tanks are strictly concerned, but they were worked out with very believable tactics and real teamwork. Whenever Ooarai wins, it actually felt like they won, not like they-won-because-the-author-wanted-them-to, which I think is the problem with most action animes. In those animes, in times of need, the "heroes" always get some s...uh...special powers that help them win magically because "power of friendship" and "protecting something" or "determination" or some s...stuff, or just plainly because the author wanted it.
WARNING! SPOILERS AHEAD!
My only qualm is that in most of Ooarai's victories, the rival schools give them too much of an advantage, but it's all firmly explained. Also, in most victories, Ooarai and the rival school shoot at the same time at each other's flag tanks, and then Ooarai hits first.
Overall: 10/10 (Rounded score, but still...)
In this world, having girls' schools train and battle in tanks in teams against other schools is considered a way to "develop yourself as a proper woman" and as a sophisticated endeavor. One school in particular resurrects their school's team after years of inactivity, and must compete against other schools with more experience and better equipment.
This anime is addicting. When all the niches are peeled away, it really is not that original plot-wise and is similar to a lot of other sports stories, but only with schoolgirls in tanks! And you know what, that premise is just enough to keep your attention and get a few laughs,
Each of the schools the protagonists face are representative of a certain country and feature their tanks. (The series is almost worth watching for 1 scene with the Russian school alone that I won't dare spoil for you.) The girls on the team are given distinct enough personalities, with each of them going through their own little story arch along the way.
If you're looking for something deep and introspective, you're at the wrong series. This series is just lighthearted fun and makes the most of its bizarre premise. The characters are enjoyable, the tank animations and battles are actually quite good and detailed.
The opening is probably above average, while the ending is just ok.
All in all, I can understand why so many people have consider this series a guilty pleasure. World of Tanks nuts will probably drool over this anime and its lovingly detailed portrayal of different tanks. For everyone else, this is still and enjoyable little romp of a series. Check it out if you have the time for some lighthearted fun.
Girls und Panzer as the name says so it's about a few girls in highschool who have an hobby called "Panzerfaren" that might be a typo but anyways the anime itself was quite good here is my review about it.
Animation 8/10 : This is quite an high score but that's because the tanks look really good wich are made with CGI else than that the character designs are quite good I like them and the backgrounds also looked good but nothing special so overall apart from the tanks it's nothing special
Story 6/10 : And this is the weakest point in this show it's the story not that it's that bad but it is very predictable I won't spoil anything but that's just waht I think about it, other than that the pacing was quite good.
Sound: 8/10 : The main reason why I give this show such a high score for sound is because they use the song "Katyusha" in ep 8, wich is a very good song in my opinion other than that the sound effects are quite good when they are firing the guns of the tanks.
Characters 6/10 : Also not a strong point in this show are the characters I didn't like them that much and other than that they inroduce characters on the last few episode's wich was also quite "meh" for me
Enjoyment 6.5 /10 : Overall this was more enjoyable than I thought it would be the action scence's where quite good but the other moments it's kind dull overall it was an average anime but the only thing is that it has quite a good animation and CGI of the tanks.
Extra note if you already watched this show and you liked it I suggest you check out "Upotte!!" wich is almost the same only this show the girls use guns instead of tanks
This was my review of Girls und Panzer if you liked my review please leave a comment or check out my other reviews thanks in advance
Cute School Girls in World War Two Armored Vehicles
What this one comes down to is whether you really like your world war two tanks and also cute innocent school girls doing their typical things while driving said tanks? If the answer is yes to both then stop reading this and go off to watch the show.
The animation is done well and the old tanks are faithfully rendered. The music and sound fits with the overarching theme well enhancing the show.
The characters are numerous and pretty shallow (they are young school girls) and there is no real development amongst them.
The plot is a simple affair with one unsubstantial surprise and no twists or turns anywhere along the line. but this does not really matter. The plot is just an excuse for the very entertaining absurdity of cute little school girls to fighting each other with vintage tanks, and entertaining it is.
As you may notice I tend to stop watching anime all the time. Sudden bursts of activity are followed by stagnant periods of inactivity. This is pretty much due to the fact the majority of anime I watch is so average or subpar, I get sick and tired of it. Despite all these anime having different plots and characters, they still manage to have the same plot and the same characters. And after seeing enough anime that contains two dimensional everything, I kind of move on to watching movies and finding more engaging media until a niggling voice in my head tells me to come back and embrace the garbage once again.
Girls Und Panzer reminds me why I intermittently stop watching anime. It’s the kind of arbitrary fap bait that has permeated nearly every season of anime for the past…well, as long as I’ve been watching anime. It’s a show with a following because it appeals to a demographic of people while also appealing to their weiners. Obviously if you like tanks or World War II or military stuff, you’ve most likely seen Girls Und Panzer. Whether you’re into these things or not, you’re embarking on a subpar journey with very few positive merits.
The show takes place at Oarai Girls Academy, where Miho Nishizumi is attempting to escape her previous life as a member of a tankery team. She meets new friends and, because the plot demands it, winds up getting stuck in a tankery after school activity. Her friends join her and together they, along with a lot of other students, set out to win a tankery tournament and save their school.
So we have a real basic setup here. The tank thing is an after-school event and the show focuses on the tournament between the different schools. It’s basically a sports anime in that regard. Once the initial hurdle of getting to the tournament is passed, the series moves at a fast clip, sending us from battle to battle. It’s paced pretty well but there’s a point about halfway through where they skip an entire battle for absolutely no reason. Every other fight of the tournament between our heroes and the other teams is shown, but this one is skipped. Okay, they wanted to push the anime forward and fit everything into the allotted episode limit. But it kind of ruins the whole idea of the underdog coming out on top. It’s a boring and overused plot device but part of the drama of this device is seeing how these underdogs manage to win. Especially after the upset of the first match, where we’re led to believe the Oarai team won due to some divine miracle, it breaks up the drama. Great, the underdogs are really badasses. Okay, so we can expect that they’ll win all their other matches.
But that only scratches the surface of the problems. The first major problem comes from the idea of tankery being feminine. The series establishes that tanks are feminine and tankery makes you a better wife. This raises a lot of questions in my head. Who, other than a Japanese man with strange fetishes, finds tanks to be feminine? When I think of femininity I don’t think of giant hunks of metal with massive cannons on them. So this idea of tanks being the kind of thing girls would love is ridiculously stupid. I’ve never known a girl who can tell an AK-47 from an M-16, let alone one who thinks tanks are cool.
Also, the anime takes place on a converted aircraft carrier. As in, the top of the carrier has been terraformed. Okay, the image is cool and if this were an anime like Gargantia where the planet is covered in water, I’d buy it. But the explanation of why schools are on battleships has something to do with how bad the school system is. Basically, the question is glossed over because not even the writer can figure out why the hell the schools are on ships.
And all the schools in the show are all-girl schools! Where are the men? What do men do in this world?
Why is it that people see a tank driving through their neighborhood and shooting and go from shocked to “GOOD LUCK AT THE MATCH!”
Why did a guy forget about the fact a tank was run into his shopfront because it is “good luck”?
How come they use old tanks? How come these tanks move so fast? How come the tank uniforms consist of short skirts? How come tanks are relevant to combat in a series that takes place in modern times?
And how come they didn’t mention that the school would close if they didn’t win the tournament until near the end? That’s a pretty big thing to forget about until the plot demands a reason for the characters to band together and set aside everything to succeed.
This show opens up so many questions. It has the skeletal parts of a story, but none of the meat that makes a story, you know, understandable. It’s like a guy was sitting at his desk with a model tank, a tank guidebook, and was watching Lucky Star. He had a voila moment and wrote out an anime that shows he obviously likes tanks and moe but he doesn’t understand anything about storytelling, character development, or world building.
Oh but the characters! How can I hate such fantastic characters? Every character in this show is pretty much awful with the exception of Yukari, who managed to be silly and cute at the same time. There’s Mako who falls asleep a lot. And Hana who…arranges flowers and that’s about it. Saori…she needs to get laid. Miho, the main character. She’s about as boring as you’d expect. One bad thing in her past defines her otherwise unstoppable winning streak. Like Kirito, she can pull shit from the air. She drifts a tank. She seriously drifts a fucking tank. Like, I could forgive most of the stupid physics and liberties taken with the tanks since it’s a cartoon. But drifting a tank…okay you’ve lost me.
Compound all these inherent problems with a lackluster main theme and ending (at least during the show the military music is a nice touch) as well as some mediocre animation (along with terrible CG tanks) and you have yourself a show so underwhelming and stupid, you’ll wonder why you sat through all twelve episodes.