‘Bakemonogatari’ follows ‘Koyomi Araragi’ who has been bitten by a vampire but is able to stay human with the help of an expert on the matter. Unfortunately, his assistance does not get ‘Araragi’ out of the world of oddities and triggers a series of similar cases and has to help the rest of the cast of characters get over their own anomalies, such as losing your own weight, and your arm turning into that of a monkey’s.
In my endless search for an anime that could replicate the experience I have watching ‘The Social Network’, the ‘Monogatari’ series was often recommended to me as they’re both very quick-witted and clever with their words. And after having seen through the first season in the franchise I can definitely see the similarities even though the language barrier undeniably removed some of the effects the author might’ve intended. Nevertheless, even though I will have to revisit the series again to become more invested before continuing through the series, I’ll try to summarize my thoughts as a whole.
The element in the series I found the most striking was a lot of the visual aspects. It manages to have your attention even when scenes might be a bit dull. Not only is the animation and fairly detailed character designs interesting to look at, but the visual composition and use of colors and experimental mediums is what really makes for a great base for the visuals. A lot of the cinematography is just very memorable which I’m not used to in a lot of series.
I found the characters to be notably likable, and for the most part following them was enjoyable. You’d expect a series such as this to have somewhat obnoxious characters but are so to convey a certain theme or idea, but they are surprisingly charming often especially ‘Senjougahara’ who’s straight-forward manner felt very charming and made episode 12 an especially enjoyable experience which seems to be the general consensus among the ‘Monogatari’ fanbase from what I have garnered. And while some characters played off tropes I find deeply annoying and uncomfortable, such as ‘Hachikuji’ and ‘Sengoku’, the series for the most part does a good job of handling those characters well.
And while I still feel I need to revisit this before feeling completely engaged in the franchise, I found that it surprisingly works on its own. As in, the series works as a story by itself which I always appreciate in longer series such as this.
Strong 7 / 10