ef – a tale of melodies [ep 1]

by eternal on October 8, 2008

All right, take a deep breath, stretch, relax your fingers…
…good. I hope I’ll be able to deliver you a relatively intelligent post on the first episode of the sequel to the extraordinary ef – a tale of memories, but if not, then don’t blame me. Blame the show for being this good.

Like always, I’ll start with the screencaps. Contrary to what I said last time, I ended up overloading on the pics again – then again, with animation like ef’s, you really can’t blame me.

Yup, I remember that paper airplane…good times.

You have no idea how much I love stories that deal with the arts.

As much as I’d like to complain about the sunlight, I have to admit, it looks pretty good.

This has to be the most aesthetically appealing show I’ve ever seen, tied with 5 cm Per Second.

The OP video is very abstract, just like last time.

Heh, I should start writing my name like that, Higurashi style.

It’s nice to see a reference to Chihiro, but it’s a shame we don’t get to see her or Miyako yet.

I almost forgot about that MILF.

This stuff always means something, but doubt anyone is capable of figuring it out without a little google ‘n’ wiki.

ミズキ…at least it’s easy to write.

Yet another one of the countless examples of Shaft’s creative art style.

Or so he claims…

Mizuki cosplay, part one!

Is it normal that this reminds me of Hidamari Sketch?

Holding the note for the right amount of time…but just how long is that?

In short, my opinion of this episode (and the franchise as a whole) is that it’s simply amazing. It’s unbelievably visually appealing in terms of both character design and everything else, it’s got the moe one would expect from a visual novel (I’m starting to take a liking to Mizuki), it’s got the semi-relateable, semi-escapist romance that’s laid over the slice-of-life undertones…put simply, it’s got everything. Or at least, everything that I could ever want from an anime.

I don’t want to ramble on too much right now about the show as a whole, and although there’s a ton of stuff I’d like to say, I should probably leave them for separate posts which I’ll conveniently label under “analysis” and write paragraphs upon paragraphs for great justice. Like I said, however, this show truly is amazing, at least in my eyes – it’s got a bit of everything in the genre, and it puts them together in a way that I daresay might be superior to Key. Might be. I’m well aware of just how awesome Key is.

Looking at this episode specifically, the story seems as if it’s off to a good start. While much of the plot remains a mystery, of course, the characters, both new and old, look like they hold much potential. Aside from my obvious curiosity about Yuuko (considering she appeared on several occasions in the first season without really saying much about herself), her story with Yuu looks more than a little intriguing. Like always, I’m not stupid enough to spoil myself on wikipedia or 4chan or any such places, so I have no clue what to expect from her route – and that’s definitely a good thing.

As for Mizuki, aside from being awesomely bright and genki (I have a weakness toward these things orz), she looks like she could become quite interesting as well, even if only for the guy. Ironically, Kuze’s character seems a lot more interesting to me than Mizuki’s, despite the fact that I obviously want to learn more about the actual girl who’s route is being animated. Regardless, though, all this talk about professional violinists and fermatas is getting me excited, and I’m definitely looking forward to what’s coming.

Ultimately, this episode was made of win, awesome animation, and more win. It’s really hard for me to not be biased toward the show, but then again, isn’t blogging all about being biased? After all, without bias, it’s hard to formulate a unique opinion, but I suppose that’s a debate for another day. Either way, I don’t believe I’m in the minority (unfunny pun is unfunny) when I say that I’ll be eagerly following this show week by week. With it’s extraordinary sense of artistic style, character designs that can rival the best in the industry, and a script worthy of Jun Maeda himself, ef – a tale of melodies does everything that it’s predecessor did. It ties together everything that makes the visual novel genre good, everything that guys love about hentai games where the H doesn’t even matter, everything that shoujo fans love about painfully realistic relationships; it’s surreal as Kanon, beautiful as 5 cm Per Second, and it’ll probably be as dramatic as Narcissu. What can I say? I love it, and this definitely isn’t the last you’ll be hearing about it – from Shaft’s studio in Japan, or from me.


{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

M12 October 9, 2008 at 3:10 am

Yes, just like last time, the visuals are absolutely amazing. Indeed, it’s cool how they made a Chihiro reference. But I want more than just a reference – I want to see her, damn it :3!

I watched this after midnight, which was probably a bad idea. Why? I was very confused O__O… XD.

I sure as heck will follow this series.

M12s last blog post..We’re moving – let’s go!


ETERNAL October 12, 2008 at 4:03 pm

@ M12: lol, it is a little confusing at first…maybe try re-watching it with a full night’s rest ;P


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