What I Liked: Allusions to mythology, takarazuka theater and Christian mythology make the series a good series for analysts. Crazy amounts of symbolism. Anthy, for being a three-dimensional and sometimes nasty character. Every character has a complexity about them that makes the series highly interesting as their ideals and motivations clash. Great soundtrack. The Black Rose Saga version of Zettai Unmei Mokushiroku. The Akio Ohtori Arc dueling sequences. The series' take on all manner of things including teenage sexuality and gender roles. The leveling out of the serious tone of the series with some (almost) pure comedy episodes.
What I Didn't: Off-model animation sometimes plagues important scenes. Characters suffer from Spaghetti-Limb Syndrome. Copious amounts of repeated footage probably takes up a good 12 episodes worth of time. Sometimes the symbolism falls into the realms of the outright ridiculous (cars, for example). Akio's as much of a flamboyant and ridiculous fop as he is a horrible, horrible person. Incest why? Pacing is as slow as snails at times. Shame that Nanami was the punchline most of the time.
Final Verdict: Revolutionary Girl Utena is one of those series touted as a classic and luckily for good reason. Even with its unfortunate pacing issues and sometimes lacklustre animation, the series is filled with allusions, symbolism, red herrings and some of the most interesting and highly developed teenage characters to grace a Shoujo series in a long time. The series also manages to address social and interpersonal issues like teenage sexulaity and gender roles with flair. All in all, Revolutionary Girl Utena is a brilliant series with enough content to satisfy even the most fussy of literary analysts.
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