The Arcana Famiglia is no ordinary mafia. The organization, headed by the powerful Mondo, lives on Regalo Island and protects its citizens from crime and corruption with the help of certain members who wield supernatural powers known as Arcana. But Mondo is growing older, and has decided to organize a tournament to determine which Arcana wielder will take his place – and his daughter Felicitá's hand in marriage, much to her dismay. Now, as Felicitá herself and other friends and colleagues wait to enter the competition, they reminisce about old times, perform good deeds for the townsfolk and continue to hone their Arcana skills.
Arcana Famiglia is a single-season anime based on a visual novel series by the same name. The story revolves around Felicita, the daughter of the family's Papa, and soon-to-be-bride of the winner of the Arcana Duello. Felicita, like many in her family, has made a contract with a Tarot card that gives her special abilities. The lowest score for this anime has to come from the story. But it's not really the anime's fault. It's the game on which the anime is based. The game centers on Felicita, and her emotions. So, while the other characters are tackling some major backstory, Felicita is still trying to befriend the rest of the Arcana family. So, while everyone has these awesome powers, they are barely showcased because no one wants to use their powers on the boss's daughter. If the anime had deviated from the game and run with the powers aspect, the show might have had a much better story, in my opinion. Personally, I would have liked to see the middle generation's (Debito, Pace, and Laca) stories expanded. The animation is clean and neatly put together. I mean just look at Debito and his face. Adorable. I'm one of those that skips through the opening and endings of anime because I'm rude. Thus, I don't have a lot to say about the music. I will say that I didn't feel any of the background music wasn't suited for the situation. It fit together well. I feel the characters were not given the full treatment by the story. All of them feel slightly incomplete, whether because the backstories weren't fully explained or something else, I'm not sure. But from what there is in the anime, the characters are likeable and dynamic. Overall, I was slightly disappointed in the anime, but I still liked it.
Story The story revolves around a group of people sworn to protect Regalo Island, with their black suits and weapons they kind of give off a mafia fibe. While there are some really cool aspects within the story, like in the beginning when the boss declares a duello and the fact that all the main characters have some kind superpower based on Tarocco cards, it's doesn't really live up to it's potential. In the beginning you get curious and you expect a lot of action and battles, however, after episode one it kind of becomes an emotional drama series with comic relief and not a lot of action happens. Until the last two episodes, when most of the characters are suddenly a lot weaker and you don't get to see a lot of the action. Some aspects of the story are quite good, but most of the episodes could just have been filler eps. Animation The story takes place in Italy, and they did do a great job with incorperating that in the backgrounds and architecture of the buildings and stuff. Also in the clothing style. But besides the convincing and pretty accurate Italian style, it's pretty normal. Sound The opening and ending songs are kind of misleading, the opening song indicates a lot of action happening but that doesn't really show in the story. The ending song doesn't really fit either. The sound effect are pretty simple. Nothing bad but nothing nice either. Characters There are a lot of characters, but mainly you'll follow the boss's daughter who's really trying to get along with everyone. From watching the first episode I concluded she was going to be a strong female character who was prepared to do anything because she wants to follow her own path. However I got strongly disapointed, she spend most of the series just sitting there going 'eh' all the time. Until the last episode, when she's suddenly a lot stronger. She ends up in situations that indicate that she's curious but then she doesn't show that in her behaviour. But then she does get angry when some of the guys tries to hit on her again. The other characters are mainly all men. Pretty handsome men at that, they do all have individual personalities and show that in their appearence. We do get to see some of the backstory of the characters, which gives us a reason for their behaviour and actions. Overall Not an anime that I would watch again, it's kind of nice to watch but some aspects are really annoying. For example how the story could have been told in three episodes. And some of the character development is lacking. I feel they could have done more with the concept. The powers of the cards are actually quite interesting. However, if by any chance you do watch this series, make sure you watch the OVA. Just that one episode made watching the series worth while.
This anime could have been so good. The world it's set in is interesting and most of the characters are good. Unfortunately, instead of focusing on the things it did right and using them to make a great anime, they brushed over most of the interesting plot, background and characters and focused on a terrible main character and a strange love triangle. All of which went nowhere, making a lot of the anime redundant. If they had of removed the main character and everything that focused around her for absolutely no reason, it could have been a very enjoyable anime.
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