Red Garden – 1 – Colourful teenage exuberance

Many people couldn’t be bothered with Vision of Escaflowne because the character designs sported big noses. The almost-ignored Fantastic Children suffered from this same shallow discrimination. I dare say both of these are modern classics, and now Red Garden will face the exact same battle against a community that largely considers the likes of Kanon the epitome of animated beauty. What went wrong?

For me this is hands down the best looking show of the fall season. Alongside the vastly different but none the less outstanding Kemonozume, Red Garden makes an immediate impression with its angular character design and eye catching colour scheme. It is like watching a feminine art book in full motion; bursting with attitude and elegance, bridging the gap between the colourful teenage exuberance of FLCL and grandiose beauty of Paradise Kiss. However keeping in mind Red Garden is being produced by GONZO, whether they can maintain these high standards remains to be seen.

Unfortunately there is something seriously wrong with this episode; the insert song. Taking its magical girl influence to scary new extremes, a particularly tearful girl breaks out into the kind of spectacularly cringe inducing, brain melting song fit to grace hell. I’m all for experimental anime, but this girl can’t sing. Fact.

I haven’t seen a good magical girl anime since Mahou Shoujotai, but on this evidence Red Garden’s wonderful style and enthusiastic charisma may well win over my heart.

Author: bateszi

A huge bloody nerd. I apologise in advance. I live in Cambridge, England. That's not an excuse, by the way.

7 thoughts on “Red Garden – 1 – Colourful teenage exuberance”

  1. The only reason her voice isn’t that good is because she’s in despair. It’s obvious, so I dismissed it. This is one of my top picks for Fall 2006 though.

  2. hmm, well, i will completely disagree with you on kemonozune (i found the design really off with some of the facial features). However, to me, Red garden has a really interesting twist that might be good for this series.

    I am warming up to the series in my own blog but i will not say that it looks good. I think that it looks pretty decent but i guess the appearance of an anime is very subjective.

    But yes, red garden is good and i will be very keen to carry on blogging about it.

  3. “The only reason her voice isn’t that good is because she’s in despair.”

    I agree with you; the emotion is clear, but the fact is, it’s still bad listening and that it lasts a good minute or two is almost unforgivable. I credit Red Garden for trying something like this, its a nice idea, just needs good voices.

    “I am warming up to the series in my own blog but i will not say that it looks good. I think that it looks pretty decent but i guess the appearance of an anime is very subjective.”

    I’m just sick of seeing the same old style of big eyes, no nose and small mouth. It’s like the character designs are loosly based on wild animals rather than humans, are intentionally attempting to be a fluffy and cute as possible. Red Garden is a breath of fresh air in these regards, the fact it looks so different is a big part of its allure.

    As for Kemonozume, its a pretty extreme example anyway. That said, it’s by far and away the most creative anime airing right now. I guess most people aren’t looking for creativity though, just more of the same “harem”, or “high school comedy” etc.

  4. I haven’t watched the anime yet, but i had to to comment of escaflowne. The series is one of the best out there. It has everything.

  5. I rly like Red garden. I’m currently watching it
    I thought the noses were a little strange at first but I got used to them. They noses are alot more realistic that the usual triangular point and they all look different.
    The plot is amazing, it’s so addictive to watch.

  6. The only reason I began watching this series was due to its animation similarities to Escaflowne. That series remains to be one of my favorites of all-time (11 years later, it is still one of the best out there). It’s a shame most anime fans of present cannot appreciate the beauty in both shows.

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