******THIS REVIEW IS IN THE PROCESS OF BEING EDITED******
"Angel Beats!" was one of those anime that I grew to really love within the meager length the whole thing lasted. This is one of my personal favourites to date and has been well worth my time. However that doesn't go without saying that Angel Beats is an example that needed more episodes (NOT a sequel, mind you) in order to bring out its full potential.
Provided that there is a plentiful cast and a decently complex storyline here, 13 episodes, 1 OVA and a 3 minute "epilogue" has left so much to be desired. I would advise further Story and Character development, would Angel Beats ever receive a remake. (which is probably unlikely)
With all that said, I find the weakest aspects in Angel Beats to be the Story and Characters, which we'll get to right now.
We start off with main protagonist Otonashi Yuzuru, who regains conscious to find himself in an afterlife world of some sort. He doesn't know where he is, what's going on, and is also suffering from amnesia, knowing nothing about his past before the present time. Soon enough he finds himself joining the Shinda Sekai Sensen (lit. "World of the Dead War Front", abbr. SSS), an organisation of other teen students trying to learn about the world they are trapped in and provoke "God" to enact revenge for making their lives
To be honest, I think this aspect of Angel Beats is actually overlooked or underrated by some people despite this being a weak point in the series. I found the whole purgatory afterlife concept t be rather creative, and that you must have no regrets from your "past life" in order to "move on".
Although to be fair, I can still understand why the story isn't well...brilliant. I've noticed, to be short, numerous plot holes within each episode. The most noteworthy examples I can remember from the top of my head, are as follows:
Putting all this aside, Angel Beats does have its touching moments (including the ending, by the time where everyone "moved on" and Otonashi and Kanade will be apparently reunited!), and every episode I watch has made me laugh a lot. XD Some of the scenes are just priceless! I suppose the humour does make up for the plot holes kinda...
Girls Dead Monster also deserves a special mention. It's an all-girls band that's featured in the story, and part of why Angel Beats is a bit of a big deal is because of this group. There are at least a couple of actual official albums by the band, as well as a number of singles, all which can be bought or downloaded if you wanted to. The real life-singers that make up the band (Marina and LiSA) have even held their own live performances and little concerts to further promote the music of Angel Beats.
As much as I REALLY love all the characters, there is a major problem that has severly hampered my rating for this: The lack of actual character development. This results in one-dimensional personalities.
Now when I say "character development", the key here is SCREEN TIME!!
I'm sure that many of us can agree that this is a very important part of what makes an anime good. As I said before, Angel Beats only had 13 episodes. If there were more episodes, then it would be a great idea to give all the characters (including the side-characters) more screen time so we can find out more about their personalities and themselves in general. For example, I thought that the Girls Dead Monster band deserved more dialogue and development.
If Angel Beats didn't have this issue, then I'm confident that I would give this point a perfect score of 10/10.
I'll briefly discuss a few of the most noteworthy cast.
Yuzuru Otonashi is the sort of person who you'd want to have as a best friend. He's friendly, collected and takes extreme caution in his actions. He's quite perceptive, very much like Kyon from The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, who would also be great for a best friend. There's also Kanade Tachibana, the adorable, pure and mysterious stoic who I'd personally want as a sister. XD Yuri is a charismatic but somewhat overly-exaggerating leader of the team, then there's the hyperactive Yui, hilarious Hinata and Takamatsu, Naoi with his badass hypnosis, and many more!
Oh, and TK says "Get chance and luck!"
Now we're talking! One of the really great things about Angel Beats besides its good use of humour is the Animation.
The style and quality of everything you see (especially the characters!) is an absolute GODSEND, even by anime standards. (If that makes sense)
I do love it when there is a generally colourful cast. Everyone looks awesome, cute, or both...and the hairstyles and colours are great too. Angel Beats has really made excellent use of lighting, effects and dramatic action scenes.
There isn't a lot for me to summarise here really. It's just in one or three words:
Pretty Much Perfect!
There isn't a lot I can say about the sound, especially since I don't pay too much attention to it. But I can say that it simply fits the show, and that's what matters most. The cast have great voices and I grew fond of the J-pop themed music by Girls Dead Monster. And the background music is the icing on the cake!
As mentioned earlier, Girls Dead Monster is pretty much the centre of the promotion of Angel Beats's music. The official albums and singles are available to buy or download and the live performances involving the real-life singers have been quite successful.
EXECUTION OF GENRES
OVERALL - PERSONAL SCORE 9/10
- FAIR SCORE 7.5/10
The Animation and Humour is well worth noting IMO. The characters themselves are also great, but again, they all needed more screen time and dialogue for us to give a damn about them. Many of them feel like that they're just....there.
Generally speaking this anime has been quite the success and I've more than often been fascinated to see people's interpretations and imaginations on what could possibly happen from the end of the show.