Being emapthetic to readers after writing this I don't think I would have liked to read a review like this before I watched the anime. I feel this way because Bakemonogatari is like a ones man's treasure is another mans trash type anime. I could say things I might hate about it but you may like it and I could say good things about it but perhaps you really hated those aspects.
If you are going to watch it anyway, I'd just go watch it and don't read reviews. If you have already seen it or you wouldn't watch it without understanding a little bit more about it then it's fine.
Bakemonogatari is a combination of Lucky Star, Death Note and Kino's Journey, at least that's how I would describe it. Since I loved all three of these anime, it's no great surprise that I also loved this one. Bakemonogatari's story is easy to explain but difficult to really give insight about how the story really is, Araragi helps out people who are in trouble, sometimes they're just lost and sometimes they're being choked to death by invisible snakes. Is it a harem? Is it an ecchi? Yes it is, while the harem component is over done and a little annoying at times, ecchi was okay, i've come across ecchi twice now, first in Highschool of the Dead and now in this and both could be looked at in many different ways but it's not the same as hentai for young boys. For being what it is, it is kind of smart and dignified... what it's real intentions are you can be the judge but I wouldn't be too turned off by the tags if I were you.
Bakemonogatari also reminds me of Angel Beats, one moment everyone is laughing and it's a slice of life and then in the next there's blood everywhere and it's really dramatic all of a sudden. We watch the characters discover themselves in new ways, change from happy to miserable and miserable to happy. I've never really used this many references to other animes before, if I were to say anything I would say that Bakemonogatari takes the best out of all my favourite anime and puts it into one. The result was great but there was something missing from it. I can't really put my finger on it but all the best anime i've watched, i've been unable to walk away from and I had to watch the next episode immediately before I moved onto normal life. However for this anime, I didn't get that feeling, perhaps its a useless thing to put into a review but whether it was the repetition of the same jokes, the sheer amount of dialogue or perhaps how predictable it was. I can't say for sure.
I will just say that the storyline was one of the weaker aspects of the anime.
However this part of it, was kickass. The animation was really the centre piece for this anime in the sense that so much effort was put into it. They actually bother to make intros and outros that only get played like once/twice and then they move on, some of the shots and uses of the "camera" are really unheard of for me in anime. It is a really involved and interesting part of Bakemonogatari. It has the usual stuff I see in animes but well, you'll understand if you watch it, I don't feel like explaining it.
Again, loved the intros/outros ops/eds and etc, the OST was really nice and the sieryuu were really talented. There's only so many ways I can say the same thing you guys -_-. You could tell a lot of effort went into it and it really made the difference, especially the everything!
Okay here's where I get serious. This anime did one character really well, I loved everything about her and that was Senjogahara. Every other character suffered from predictability, instant gratification or plain dullness. I enjoyed listening to their conversations, I enjoyed watching them deal with the monsters but almost every character was extremely boring. What I mean is this; you might laugh at the jokes, you might get excited by the action and you may melt to the romance but you will NOT get attached to the characters. You'll marvel at the animation and the music but at the end of the day these characters represent nothing, they are one sentence cliches who will never surprise you. They are not vague or obscure in their portrayal either.
You learn their most intimate secrets, you experience their most dramatic ordeals and you are told who they are and then after that they are tools of comedy and drama. With characters this shallow, it's difficult to do that. Perhaps I'm not describing it well, what I mean to say is that nvm I give up.
I am too stupid to convey my thoughts, perhaps too stupid to even have thoughts. I think my body woke up but my brain went to sleep. Such stupid people shouldn't write reviews, and to write a review this long? Gosh I am a horribly inconsiderate person and I shouldn't write anymore reviews! But I will. I know that there's a sequel but I can't take anymore I need a break ;[.