Arakawa under the bridge is a great anime filled with comedy, love and a bit of philosophic thought (but not so much...)
The story start with a young man name Kou Ichinomiya who have been taught to never rely on anyone for anything. When he fall into the Arakawa River and is saved by Nino, a girl who live there, he got the biggest debt of all: he owned her his life. He decide to become her lover and he start living under the bridge where he met the other inhabitant: the mayor who think he is a kappa, hoshi, a rock star wearing a star mask (yeah... weird...whatever...), Whitey, a man who let wife and kids because he become obssesed with walking on white lines, Sister, a bulky veteran crossdressing into a nun and many others.
The comedy in this anime is great, the jokes are a bit repetitive but falls into place. The overall story don't really evolve a lot, it's more of a "slice-of-life" feeling of what is happening under the bridge than a complete story. But there is at the end some things happening. A really liked it, every episode really maked me smile, and the starting part where the characters talk about the meaning of life were beautiful and yet didn't looked out of place in an anime that revolve around comedic situations.
The overall animation were good. Nino characters feels a bit strange at first, because it look like she is less in finition than other characters, but it add to the feeling of her being some kind of outsider to human race. The animation was smouth, with a lot of comedic effects (blank shocked characters, nasty aura, etc.) There was an artistic overall feeling with this anime.
The animation for the opening was great. I really loved it, it feels so poetic.
The opening sound is good, a really liked it and I sometimes found myself humming this tune while doing someting else (like washing the dishes....) The ending song is good, but forgettable. The music during the anime was greatly place. I particulary loved the music they used in the pilosophic phase, it gives a melancolic aura to it. Sound effect for the jokes were okay I guess and Hoshi's song were... let's forget them...
Like most of these kind of comedic animes, the characters takes a really important place. All of them were original, interesting and funny. Some of them were more amusing than other. The two central characters, Kou and Nino makes a great couple. The kappa mayor, sister, hoshi and all the other takes great place and we rapidly found ourself caring for them, even the few sadistic ones that inhabit the rivers bank.
I would have liked to have more of the background of the characters, we don't even know where they all comes from and the serie don't really add any devellopement in theirs personalities, except for Kou. But since the anime is about more comidy purpose than telling their stories, this feels alright.
Arakawa under the bridge is a great anime, something enjoyable during summer, to watch it in the sun with a lemonde feels like the normal thing to do. It makes smile and life seems brighter after watching it.