Friday, December 20, 2013

12 Days of Stuff

Uchouten Kazoku looked to be one of my favorite anime seris of the year and to cement itself as the landmark to break PA Works' terrible, terrible curse that has tormented the studio since the beginning of time.

That curse has yet to be broken.

Uchouten Kazoku was kinda brilliant for the first two-thirds. An incredibly fleshed out and realistic family cast, beautifully handled emotions and underneath that exquisitely immersive setting full of strange whimisical events, Uchouten Kazoku was very human at its core, more human than most anime try to achieve, and it tugged at my heart strings quite a lot.

I should have guessed that Uchouten Kazoku would eventually succumb to the curse.

Uchouten Kazoku doesn't simply just have a disappointing ending. It had the most disappointing ending of the year. The two other disappointing endings that come to mind are Love Lab and Aku no Hana and they didn't match up!

Love Lab also shoots itself in the foot with that last third, but I didn't choose that ending over Uchouten because it never set its bar as high. I didn't choose Aku no Hana either because, while it was disappointing to see the series end on a cliffhanger, the show achieved a lot of its ambitions and I was fully satisfied with more than one moment. Aku no Hana wanted to present an innocent boy's slow descent into becoming a monster and it accomplished that. It wanted to exemplify how awful society and humanity is. Also accomplished. It wanted to slowly build moments upon moments into huge climaxes. Also accomplished.

While the start of Uchouten Kazoku wasbrilliant, I never fully understood what it was trying to accomplish in the long run and instead of trying to resolve character problems, the series only brought up more unresolved traits that seemed like they would be resolved by the end especially with Benten and our male lead.

And the whole stinger is that the series felt like there was finally going to be a huge satisfying pay off around episode seven.

Underwhelming would be an understatement for that last third. The climax was boring, the villains were too goofy and, worst of all, none of the characters are resolved. Everything felt the same from the beginning and none of those powerful human moments ever amounted to anything significant.

In the end, I'm sad to say, Uchouten Kazoku was way too reserved for its own good.
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