ICE. When I saw the promotional poster for this OVA I was immediately intrigued. It was simple, good lookingm and hid just enough information for me to try it out. It had been quite a long time since I had run into a good love story, and that was what I expected. I was wrong to expect it to be typical.
As noted in the summary, it was a story of a dystopic world that had run into a bit of a problem: The loss of its men and a tense stalemate between the two groups the remaining people separated into. This itself was an interesting premise, albeit not exactly original.
It's not completely unwatchable, however it offers many disagreements to the viewer. My main problems with this anime were the pacing and to a degree the character interaction.
Many times I felt tossed around with the story. There seemed to be a bit of rushing in parts and nothing was ever fully layed out. Hitomi and Yuki's relationship seemed to proceed in an odd way. (There is only so much you can explain just by throwing the word destiny around.) Much of the focus was brought in on parts where it wasn't necessary at all. They dragged out scenes that in the end were not all too important. The switches between past and future could have been a bit less abrupt at the start. Some sort of transition or explanation for it as the story progressed would have done wonders. Also, the bit with Hitomi's visions as well as the events involving Lady Kisaragi in the ending and her rising seemed a bit farfetched/out there.
By the end, with so little attention to story, I was left wondering whether this was merely meant to be an exhibition of the AKB48 members as a service to fans rather than a serious work. With a bit more time and orginization, I feel this could have been significantly better.
The animation itself was decent, although it did seem to lack on occasion (especially with some of the shortcuts taken in the 'ballroom scene') I don't have any other complaints about it. The vocal choices were rather good. Most fitted their characters perfectly, demonstrating an effective use of technique to really capture their personalities even with such short screen time alotted.
Overall, I'd like to give the makers credit for thinking up something that had the potential to be rather good. However, I'm very disappointed with the actual realization of the idea. It's sad to say that the final scene was probably the best when none of the others matched it.
This is worth watching if you have some time on your hands, but not at all worth going out of the way for. If you're looking for something of with Simoun's quality and style, Maria-sama's gentle grace, or Kannazuki no Miko's well played out love throughout re-incarnation aspect- this is not at all for you. If you'd like something akin to a combined shadow of those three, be sure to check this out.
overall score: 5/10
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