In present day Japan, the life of a school girl is never dull. The easily-bored Konata never finds time to study because of her otaku habits, which frustrates hard-working Kagami to no end. On the other hand, laid-back Tsukasa always manages to go with the flow, while Miyuki is concerned with keeping her status as resident know-it-all. Join these four girls as they muse and meander their way through everyday events such as eating chocolate cones, doing homework, gaming, and trips to the beach galore.
Lucky Star is a 24 episode slice-of-life comedy anime chock full of parodies and references to everything anime. Featuring chibi visuals and a cast of almost only female characters (mainly high school girls), this looks like a recipe for disaster and cringe. Yet… it isn’t. Don’t expect any plot, none here as it’s a bunch of random scenes stitched together on some sort of timeline, but plenty of laughs are to be had, even with the adorable style. Despite the horde of Japanese cultural references, this anime is best watched as the English dub version. An anime that even a cynic like me could appreciate. Animation So animation quality is top notch, I watched it in HD of course. Quite fluid and no glitches, especially noticeable in the small hand/arm animations during the scene in the large communal bath. The animation style was definitely unique. The entire thing has a cutesy chibi style, which I honestly haven’t seen done to this extent in anime before. Not 24 entire episodes of it (*remembers a bad anime, then puts memory away*). The weirdest thing is that the characters are apparently highschool girls. With this animation style, I can’t imagine the characters being more than 10 years old. One negative of this aesthetic theme is that it puts people off. I’m lucky I gave it a chance. They use quite a lot of quirks, a common one is the line eyes often used on Konata. Facial expression are important too and a key part of the gag for the lucky show segment at the end. And the style varies as well, for added comedic value. In an early episode, there’s a parody of a racing anime and everything suddenly goes very stylised and a bit more detailed. Some characters are exclusively animated in a different style too, like the employees at the manga store animated like something out of a serious action anime. It’s nice and colourful. It was very cutesy and someone as cynical as me even melted when I saw how adorable Tsukasa is (with that wittle bow on her wittle head). Dagnammit, I want to adopt such a cute child, forget adopting a puppy! And I love how there isn’t much room for fan-service. They were sensible in the beach episode, with the cliche exception of Konata wearing a goddamn school swimsuit. Goddammit! I really don’t see what’s so appealing about such a BS anime trope? That thing is ugly, why do they bother shoving that down our throats? Konata wears it on purpose, for the apparent reason that she’s whoring her body out for creepy wierdos who like that stuff. However you will notice in the intro that there is a little bit of boob-jiggle. Particularly on one character, Patricia Martin, the foreign otaku transfer student who typically has larger than average breasts like Miyuki. They don’t draw much attention to this thankfully, though Konata sometimes goes and ruins it by referring to it. A paragraph on the only aesthetic choice that I disagreed with. Sound The intro music is a bit weird, heck the intro is itself a bit weird and like the general style of animation, may wrongly put people off. But it isn’t terrible. What they do for the outro’s is even more exciting however. For the first 12 episodes, the outro follows a mini arc where the girls are at a karaoke place taking turns to sing a variety of songs. I think these songs are supposed to be references to anime and Japanese culture, but only one of them sounded familiar before the translation of the song lyrics turned out to be nonsense. The singing is funny too, as sometimes it’s obvious a character is singing terribly. And then the second outro… *giggle* The background music is used appropriately and well within context and once again contributes to the mood in the scene, often a funny one. Sound design is very good here, they even have music from other anime often to indicate a character watching an anime on TV. This anime is surprisingly available in both English and Japanese, I watched it in English of course and I must say that the dub was noticeably good. And I’m one who usually can’t comment on that sort of stuff. Even in the English version, there is a large amount of Japanese phrases and terms used, sometimes the names of things and this did often have me wondering what they were saying during those bits. I did end up watching the OVA, which was Japanese only (I also have both languages for the main series) and now I must honestly say that I thought the English voices were better for this anime. They seemed much more suitable and to radiate character. The voices were rightfully quirky while in the Japanese version, they seemed a bit generic and seemed to have a negative effect on the whole atmosphere and jokes. Especially Akira’s voice, the character can better be conveyed by the sound and tone of their voice better in the English version. This is one of the few anime where I’d recommend watching it in English. Stunning job on the voice acting. A respectable voice acting cast too here. Konata is voiced by Wendee Lee, who also voiced Faye Valentine from Cowboy Bebop, Bulma from Dragonball, Rushyuna Tendo from Grenadier, Haruhi from The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya (an anime referred to often), Hatsuho Kazami from Please Teacher and Miho Karasuma from Witch Hunter Robin. Kagami is voiced be Kari Wahlgreen, the voice of such characters including Marianne Vi Britannia from Code Geass, Anemone from Eureka Seven, Saber from Fate/Zero, Tsuruya and Kyon’s sister from The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, and Robin from Witch Hunter Robin. Karen Strassman is the voice of Miyuki here, who also voices Karen from Code Geass, Miyo Takano from Higurashi and Kiyoh Bachika from Gurren Lagann. If you didn’t notice, Tsukasa is obviously voiced by Michelle Ruff, I shouldn’t have to tell you what anime she’s been in. Other notable voices include Sean Regal as Minoru Shiraishi, Kate Higgins as Nanako Kuroi and Julie Ann-Taylor as Yui Narumi. Characters Konata Izumi, a long blue-haired, 17 year old, small-for-her-age high-school girl is the most prominent of the main characters. She’s also the source of most of the references in this anime as she is the otaku of the anime. A chilled out, lax character, she likes to spend her time watching anime, reading manga and playing games. Her favourite game genres are dating-sims and MMOs, but she seems to be good at everything. She also seems to have a taste in anime and manga more suited to an adolescent boy, her tastes are essentially inherited from her father who apparently introduced her to the stuff while she was a kid. She likes everything otaku, such as cosplay, conventions and collection pointless memorabilia. At school, she’s a slacker and often gets told off by her teacher and Kagami for it, especially as she often copies Kagami’s homework. Her grades are that great, but this is because she never does her homework or take her books home to revise. For the exams she does all-nighters to cram last minute and do well in the exam. She’s not exactly dumb and could do much better if she put her enthusiasm for all things anime and games into school, as mentioned by her friend Kagami. She is also very good at athletics, though she doesn’t enjoy that sort of stuff. Being the otaku, she is also the weirdest character of the bunch, pointing out weird things like fan-service and flags (apparently a mechanic of dating sims). Due to her mother dying when she was a child, she is good at housework and cooking from doing those things often. Who better to go with Konata than her friend Kagami Hiiragi. This lilac haired twin-tailed girl is in the same year as Konata, the older of the two Hiiragi twins and has always been in a different class to Konata and the others. She is the sensible and responsible character of the group, often making snide remarks at the silly things the others, mostly Konata say. Probably the most normal and realistic character of the group, she is worried about her weight (like girls do) and she also puts in effort where needed, always doing her homework on time, revising for exams properly and then getting good grades and she is also the class representative for her class. She is wrongly accused of being tsundere at times, though perhaps it’s not wrong to say that, since Kagami’s desires to be the responsible one means she often hides what little childishness and immaturity she has. She also likes to plays games, but not to the same extent as Konata and apparently her favourite genre is shooters. She is terrible at cooking and housework and often teased about it by Konata. Kagami’s adorable twin sister, Tsukasa Hiiragi, also has lilac hair, although a short and cute cut with an adorable ribbon on her head. The two are not identical twins and Tsukasa is the younger one, in the same class as Konata. She is often asking her for help with homework or to copy it. She also has trouble waking up early and often wakes up at midday. The cute and clumsy type of character who looks adorable if she tries hard or pouts, she is not as smart as her sister or even Konata and she’s picked up similar habits to Konata to get through school. Unlike Konata and much like her sister, she is still a girly girl and has interests accordingly. The Hiiragi twins live with their two older sisters and both of their parents as a big happy family. The last member of the main group is Miyuki Takara, a long pink-haired glasses-wearing rich girl. She seems to be of the perfect girl trope, a pleasant approachable individual raised in a well-off family and apparently is good at everything and seems to have no flaws. Konata often points out how curvaceous she is, thanks to the sensible animation style this would otherwise not be discernible. Being in the same class as Konata and Tsukasa, she is the class representative and like Kagami is a smart girl who does her homework properly and on time and does well in exams. Unlike Kagami, she is much more sensible and kind, being very tolerant of Konata’s jokes and appears not to have a hidden childish side. She is scared of the dentist and is often accused by Konata of being a moe character. She can definitely be clumsy at times, Konata often fawns at this. Miyuki’s mother often seems to be home and not doing much with no mention of a father. More characters, one of two regulars at the end of the show on a segment named Lucky Channel, is Akira Kogami. This cute, short and adorable idol is actually two-faced. Or put better, she is capable of acting cute and nice, but in reality is a hot-headed, selfish and cruel individual. She often display bad habits like picking her nose, teeth and ears and then flicking it. In pretty much every Lucky channel segment she can be seen in both forms, the nice form and the ‘real’ form. She is often mean to Minoru Shiraishi, the boy who is her co-host, often being jealous of the fact that he gets small cameo roles in the main anime. There are also connotations that she may be a teenage smoker. Speaking of which, Minoru Shirashi is the co-host of Lucky Channel and also features as small roles in the main segment as I mentioned before. He is often berated by the jealous meany Akira, but does his job well. He seems to have a bit of a submissive personality to balance Akira’s aggressive personality, but he does often get off small comments and complaints, while Akira is talking. He is quite knowledgeable and makes old references and disposes interesting facts like the origins of the term Tsundere. One of the more prominent characters in the anime is the adult cousin of Konata and policewoman, Yui Narumi. At the start, there is a mention one of Konata’s cousins is getting married and later you realise, that Yui is this cousin. Yui is said to have a ‘commuter marriage’ which means her husband lives away during work and only comes home when he has time off. As such, Yui has free time on her hands when she isn’t working herself, often hanging out with Konata and reading manga. Probably my favourite character in this anime and one which is easier to relate to. Despite being a traffic officer and a policewoman, Yui behaves irresponsibly and has no clue how to help, when Konata or her younger sister ask her for help. She loves to get drunk, she is an aggressive and dangerous driver and makes illicit suggestions, such as trying to take underage kids drinking. She is a very funny character in my opinion. There is one more character similar to Yui, who is Nanako Kuroi, the 27 year old, blonde snaggletooth teacher of the girls at their high-school. She can be quite harsh and strict, she is often found berating Konata and whacking her on the head when she sleeps or does something she isn’t supposed to. She is also single and spends a lot of time playing games, especially an MMO which Konata also plays. She plays a wizard and often reminds Konata of the real world with things like homework. She tries her best to put up the impression that single is good, but it becomes apparent that she truly is lonely. Strangely for an anime of this type, the parents are revealed in pretty much full with a few exceptions. One such parent is Sojiro Izumi, the single parent of Konata. You’d think he’d be single because he’s a bit creepy and slightly an Otaku, having raised his daughter with such interests, but actually his wife (Konata’s mother) died soon after his daughter was born. Yes I hate how creepy he is, often going around with cameras trying to take pictures of young girls and being accused of odd things as his wife was short and looked very young for her age (in pictures). But he’s actually a proper dad at heart, much less an otaku than his daughter doing things that dads do, showering his daughter with care and love and worrying about her too. After all, she’s the only family he has left. Miyuki’s seemingly single mother (father is never mentioned) is a lot like Miyuki, a posh, chilled out and clumsy individual. Unlike Miyuki, she isn’t as smart but always praises her daughter for knowing random stuff (hence why Miyukji studies up on random trivia). She does seem to have a mean and serious side, but this is rarely seen. The other characters don’t really appear until the second half. The first of which is Yui’s younger sister Yutaka Kobayakawa, mentioned to be moving into Konata’s house for high school in an earlier episode. This girl is very cute and short, with a high-pitched voice. She seems to be the shy, gentle, small and frail type and really looks up to her best friend Minami as well as her irresponsible sister and also her cousin Konata. She didn’t get many chances to make good friends and have fun during junior high due to being ill, so she’s very happy in high school with her new friends. The most prominent of these friends is Minami Iwasaki, a very shy and tall girl who is also from a well off family and happens to be Miyuki’s neighbour. She doesn’t talk very much and her timidness means the gentle Yutaka is perfect to be her friend. Being tall, she’s also overly concerned about her flat chest. Two two minor characters and friends of Yutaka’s in her class are Patricia Martin and Hiyori Tamura. Patricia Martin is a blonde transfer student from America, who also works at the cosplay café Konata gets a job at. She talks in a ridiculously high-pitched voice and is also curvaceous like Miyuki, contributing to the only bit of boob-jiggle in the entire anime. Both of these characters are otaku and Patricia looks at it being the pinnacle of Japanese culture, much to Kagami’s dismay. However, Hiyori is actually a Mangaka, a manga artist and specialises in adult manga called doujin. This suits her perverted personality and she’s often seen fantasising about her friends in romantic situations (especially Yutaka and Minami). Story There is no story or over arcing plot, this is most definitely a slice of life-anime. That’s not to say each of the events is a one trick pony, things that happen in older episodes are sometimes referred to. There’s a whole lot of talking, sometimes just random girly stuff and often including things that may make the viewer chuckle. The small developments there are, include the introduction of new characters and the passage of time starting from summer in the girls’ second year of high school and ending over a year later. Overall, this sort of anime would be severely disappointing as plot is one of the core pillars which makes anime worth ones time. But here, it’s about the laughs and there’s nothing to worry about as far as character development is concerning. No forming relationships, no cringey harems lacking progression, just a hearty good time. But it also has a few points to make, it got emotional and pulled at my heartstrings when the backstory about Konata’s parents was revealed. There is a ridiculous number of references to anime and Japanese pop culture. Many of these I didn’t understand, while others I did. A lot of the popular stuff is bleeped, likely due to copyright, the franchise that makes the most cameo appearances is Haruhi Suzumiya, makes sense since a lot of the VAs also did voices for characters in that anime. Popular games like Monster Hunter and Pokemon are also referenced and so many other anime like Code Geass, Fate and Da Capo. They even make reference to Japanese bands that have done music for anime, though Kagami incorrectly labels them as anime bands when they aren't exactly. Just to be clear, bands are normal bands unless they do almost exclusively anime songs. The few I recognised are just normal bands who have done a few songs for anime, often these songs are from their existing/future albums. It's just like how musicians in the western hemisphere might occasionally get paid to have their songs put in a movie or TV series or even ads. We don't call those movie musicians now do we? At the end of every episode there is a short segment called Lucky Channel, which doesn’t seem to have much going on. Beneath the surface though, lies a small subplot, which really comes into its own during the last several episodes. The story of the main series could have easily been improved, just by finishing when the main cast finishes high-school. It would have added more plot. And of course I just wanted more, a real shame that. Conclusion So after all that, this anime is definitely worth watching. Maybe stay away if you don’t like slice-of-life, but even among those anime, this is one of the better ones. Good laughs and very little bullshit, even with all of the otaku weirdness. I’d recommend it to everyone, to at least try a couple of episodes before deciding whether to continue watching it or not. The intro and animation style might be off-putting at first, but a cynical person like me who values story still enjoyed this anime which had no over-arcing plot. Also watch the English dub version instead, it’s actually better than the Japanese version. Family-friendliness Rating: 2/5 Occasional mature references (lower is better) Overall Rating: 8/10 (higher is better)
Okay, this is actually my first time reviewing this anime show called Lucky Star. Before I started to review it, theres actually a lot of reviews about it. Some have positive, some have negative reviews. I'm going to be one of the positive reviewers for this one. When I first saw Lucky Star, it has a fun sort of talk conversation including food, culture, video games, anime, and etc. There's also anime parodies including The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya and stuff like that. They even discuss about certain real stuff that parts of the subtitles were censored and I can hardly recognize it. Maybe if I buy the whole season, the subtitles might be uncensored. Anyway, moving on. Story: This show actually have no plot at all and it's like a sit-com. This is probably the only anime sit-com that I will never forget and always be my most favorite. It's just the main 4 teenage high school girls having their everyday lives. Like what it says above, they have conversation about mostly everything including the hobbies that I always like. Discussions can be dull, but other conversations can be entertaining sometimes. I mean most of the conversations about food usually makes me hungry more often. Even manga, anime, video games, and anything otaku-related just lures me like a magnet. Some of the jokes gave me quite a laugh. Lucky Channel that occurs almost close to the end of each episode is not bad, some of the parts were funny, some can usually pisses me off sometimes. And yes, I say the word, "some" alot. Animation: The animation is actually decent and really cute. I mean there's some people who hated it. I think this is actually really perfect with this style of the anime though it needs improvement, but the drawings and animation quality is just amazing and quite adorable. :D Sound: The opening theme of the song is really catchy and can be weird sometimes when it was my first time watching it. The ending theme is usually about half of the episodes were sung by the 4 main characters at the karaoke room. Idk why I can't see the inside of it, but I'll mind my own business. I even saw Minoru lol. The other ending themes I usually saw Minoru who has the same name as the character himself. It's usually goofy, but can be entertaining at most times. Characters: Aw man, theres actually a lot to talk about the characters. Most of the main characters are the most likeable throughout the series. Konata, a hardcore otaku. Kagami, a older twin sister and has a bit of a Tsundere personality, but can be emotional and shy sometimes. Tsukasa, a younger twin sister who's cute and friendly, but clumsy who doesn't do good at school, but has a major skill in cooking. Miyuki, who is smart, beautiful, well-mannered, and comes from a wealthy family. She usually have some minor mistakes like being clumsy for example. She also gives out interesting information. Most of the secondary characters are likeable except Akira from Lucky Channel. And the minor characters. Oh my gosh, there's about over 50 minor characters. I mean this is just insane. I never seen an anime show that had that much. Few of them I recognize more often. Overall: I actually enjoyed Lucky Star a lot! :D Very fun, entertaining, and has bits and pieces of comedy in a slice of life genre. Highly recommendable to anyone who wants to watch it. :)
Story: (2/10) ... huh...? There was a story to this...? Not really, no. It's just "watch 4 girls and creepy acquaintences and siblings as they roll around and talk about menial crap." Yep, that about sums up the story and my opinion on it. Damn I'm good. Animation: (7/10) Cute. Appropriate. I personally liked it, but after a while the backgrounds were rather dull and I got sick of seeing the same characters standing in the same positions for 20 minutes at a time. Decent? Yeah. Great? Not really. Sound: (4/10) All four points are for the OP. Super addicting. The rest? Voice actors are ear-itching after about 3 episodes, the background music was almost always this certain piano peice that sounded like it was composed by a chimp with down syndrome and a nice mix of Parkinson's and cerebral palsy. The ED theme was virtually non-existant, as it was usually just another skit known as "Lucky Channel", which is why the overall gets an extra point. Characters: (2/10) All the characters were extremely dull and hardly memorable at all, with the only real charismatic value coming from the blue-haired otaku girl, who frankly also became dull as the show sucked her humor out like a housewife. Essentially the character personalities offer a "meh, that was kinda funny" experience for a few episodes before becoming blatantly repetitive. Overall: (4/10) Honestly this show is drastically overrated. The best part about it is Lucky Channel, which is just a 2 minute segment. So the overall is 1 point for otaku girl, 1 point for the OP, one point for Lucky Channel, and one point for letting me know just how slice-of-lifey you can be if you try. Honestly, watch this if your pet-peeve is watching high school lolis talk about taking trips to the dentist and studying.
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