The Twelve Kingdoms (十二国記)

All posts tagged The Twelve Kingdoms (十二国記)

It was just 3 days ago that I last wrote my last review. Now, a review of a 45-episode anime is here in such a short time. Why is that you wonder? Well go on and read this review of The Twelve Kingdoms.

The storyline of this anime is brilliant, yet frustrating. A red-head high school girl was spirited away to a square-shaped continent that has 12 countries in it by some weird long-haired man. Then she was hunted down by mysterious creatures who wants her dead. Eventually she finds out that she is the new ruler of one of the countries, and went on to depose the fake ruler of her country and become one herself.

The synopsis above doesn’t really do the series justice, as it just covers the first arc of the anime (shame on you ANN). But what’s will bewilder me will come next in the second arc about the Kirin of another country, which if NHK doesn’t make a second season fast, will be anointed as the most wasteful anime story arc in history. In fact, you can watch episode 15-22 and will not miss anything!

The third arc makes more sense, but the fourth one, which forms the last 5 episodes of the series is just the same as the second arc. It doesn’t make any sense whatsoever, unless NHK makes a second season that can bring the closure to that silly arc of course. In other words, while the series is 45 episodes long, it ends actually at episode 39. And if you discount the episodes that make up the second arc, it will be even less than that.

The first and third story arcs are brilliant, but the second and the last story arc are frustrating. This anime has the words “SECOND SEASON” written all over it, and it really needs one because, for example,  the second story arc ends with plenty of questions unanswered. And it has all the hallmarks of a great story, but in its current state it just sucks.

I finished watching this one in 3 days because it was very good. In fact I have a marathon session yesterday where I watched nearly 30 episodes in one go. That’s how good this anime can be.

I found an online petition of the fans of this anime here. Everyone should sign it. This anime really needs a new season. Definitely better than Naruto which spend about a year in filler mode. I want to know what happens to that Kirin from Tai Country who are stuck in Japan. And I want to know more about the other countries. In fact, the main protagonist only travels to 3 of them, and some of the others are shrouded in mystery.

Character design:-
Well, from the 2 screenshots provided, not really outstanding. Here we don’t have the normal big eyes and big breasts, which is a good thing. I like the monsters character designs though, especially the Shirei monsters and also Rakushuun.

Voice acting:-
Another strong point of the anime, voice acting for most of the main characters are great. You really can’t complain about this one, as there are many talented voice actors/actresses bringing the maze of characters here to live.

Not as good as the voice acting and the story though. The OP and ED themes are not impressive. Meanwhile the OST is almost non-existent, as most of the story flows without being accompanied by music. Or I don’t heard it, which I doubt because I have a pair of good speakers and they are tuned up. Well, with such a good story, it can get away without any music.

It was the reverse of the case with Pretear. The directing is great but the animation in plenty of parts in the anime is somewhat lacking. And I watched a DVD rip here.

From all the texts I typed above, I decided to give this anime 8 out of 10.  A perfect score is not out of reach *wink*wink*nudge*nudge* NHK.