19 May 2012

Suzuka anime review

Type: TV
Episodes: 26
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Jul 7, 2005 to Dec 29, 2005
Producers: Marvelous Entertainment, FUNimation EntertainmentL
Genres: Drama, Romance, Sports
Duration: 23 min. per episode
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or older

I have to say after seeing the whole series even though a lot of people said it sucked..it kinda left an impression on me. 
The general audience should be the one that likes romance, drama, and/or "slice of life" anime. Or simply someone who just wants to give it a try. So if you're looking for something funny with a bit of fanservice and a couple of action, I suggest you try other anime's out there. I recommend this anime to those who watches realistic anime under the romance-drama genre. Oh, sports anime fans may have a little something to enjoy here. 

Akitsuki Yamato moved to Tokyo for a change of pace. Upon his first day at his new high school, Yamato passed by the track and field club practicing, only to witness something that would take his breath away. The image of a beautiful girl leaping over a raised bar would be embedded in his mind forever. After returning to his residence, an all-female boarding house/public bath owned by his aunt, Yamato is surprised to see that his new neighbor is none other than the girl who caused his heart to skip a beat. She is Asahina Suzuka, an aspiring high jumper and the prettiest girl Yamato has ever seen. 

Over time, Yamato can't help but fall more and more in love with Suzuka. He even goes as far as to join the track and field club just to be closer to her. Still, Suzuka does not warm up to Yamato so easily. Are the two just friends or is there something more than that underneath it all?

Even though the premise seems to come directly from Love Hina, this is hardly a harem anime (like anime with a lot of girls who all want this one guy, such as the titles Love Hina, or vice versa). The anime revolves around the relationship between Yamato and Suzuka. 

Throughout the anime, you are guided by the narration of Yamato (lead male character, who's far less wimpy than Love Hina's Keitaro XD) The character interactions and development is done very well and very realistically. (I could almost relate to Suzuka) 

The narration by Yamato really provides some great insight into what goes on in the mind of a guy who has a crush on a girl. I was giggling everytime Yamato tries not to make a fool of himself everytime he's with Suzuka. XD There aren't any other interesting characters because there are quite a few. Although I find the supporting characters very useful especially towards to developing relationship between Yamato and Suzuka. 

And Miss Suzuka here, our main lead female character, is my favorite character in the series. XD She's simple, nice with a cool attitude. I wonder why most of the people who decided to watch this, hated her guts. I mean, ok, she tends to be bitchy and bossy but she has her reasons.

Honoka, the second main heroine of the “Suzuka” is a caring, kind and cute girl who had a crush on Yamato for a long time.
What I liked the most about “Suzuka” is that every character behaves naturally. The way their feelings for each other were developing was almost life-like. Yes, it’s of course not perfect, but it definitely was great to not see in “Suzuka” any standard and over-used romantic clich├ęs and exaggerating. And I must mention one more thing: usually, a main hero’s friend in this kind of show is an air-headed fool who thinks only about girls and tries to give stupid advices. But Yasunobu is nothing like that; he is calm and seems lot more mature than Yamato. In fact, in general all supporting characters were well-made.
Each character has a unique, strong personality and although there are many cliched moments through-out the show where you can probably predict what will happen next, that doesn't prevent the show from being enjoyable though; as to see how the characters in question will deal with each situation keeps you the viewer going and wanting to see more- the show also has moments and reactions which are quiet surprising.

This all good, but one of the main flaws of the series is a lack of those things which make you “feel” the show more: good music, animation and graphic. The animation of the show is quite poor: sport sequences look rather bad due to low budget (not sure, but I got a feeling that it IS a low-budget anime) and the whole visual style of the show is simple. I took a look at the manga and I think that black and white pages look much better. And the soundtrack is uninspired and mediocre. There are some nice tunes (like the second ending), but that’s just not enough for me. I can’t say anything about the opening because I couldn’t bring myself to listen to it even for a single time.

Still, all these flaws didn’t ruin the entertainment. The last 6-7 episodes of the show were very interesting and breathtaking; I was completely in to the story. I think that “Suzuka is a great example of how romantic anime should be made in terms of character development and depiction difficulties of their relationships.

Anime opening titles:

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