Tokyo Ravens Review — B

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Onmyoujis go to school in Tokyo.

A somewhat generic premise. Kids go to school, become friends, save the world from evil. But with cool onmyouji shit! So I liked it a lot. Even if I had no clue what was going on half the time. Like with everything involving the chief priest, Harutora’s lost memories, and the ending.

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Interesting characters (psycho blondie is my favorite, obviously, although the cross-dressing girl is a close second), sweet onmyouji battles, decent romance (although nothing great), and evil conspiracies.

  • Storytelling – C – Can be rather confusing with everyone being reincarnated and stuff… Lost me a lot.
  • Voice – B – Onmyoujis! Magic! Magic mecha thingies! Yay!
  • Characters – B – I always like it when shows have a cast which pays equal attention to both genders. Although there are a lot of girls interested in Harutora, I wouldn’t call it a harem. I was rather confused about what most of the adults were doing, but the kids made for some good characters. Kon was annoying sometimes.
  • Attention Grab – B – Lots of explosions, it knows how to please.
  • Production – B – Looks fine.
  • Overall – B

Recommendations – Shana, Kekkaishi, Inu X Boku SS

8 thoughts on “Tokyo Ravens Review — B

  1. This is one of the case that we have different opinion. This anime should be D, because the story telling is F.

    So, we found out that Harutora is the real Yakou reincarnation. A topic which drives the plot of this anime ever since episode 1. However, what’s the implication of that?
    What did he do after he obtained that power? What did the evil group do, after his power is activated? What did the good guys do?
    Nothing.

    He himself only used that power to revive a girl who died suddenly several episode before the ending. And he went into journey in the end. Into hiding. The earth is still rotating. The world is still at peace. And every characters wasted their efforts and lives.

    WTF man. WTF.

    1. I should add that the death of that girl is totally ass pull. We have seen them almost roasted alive, we have seen them fall from the sky, we have seen them attacked by a lot of freaks. Yet they survive.

      But just before the end, she was killed by some feathers?

    2. Haha yeah. The story isn’t over yet. I’m okay with that.

      If you read between the lines there’s more to it though. Some sort of power struggle between different factions. I haven’t entirely figured it out myself. You might say that the story telling is not very good because they didn’t explain it that well. But actually, I like being confused. I wish more anime didn’t feel the need to explain everything so even an idiot who slept through half the show could understand it. Keeps some mystery in it.

      1. The loli and her shinigamis are planning to make Harutora their leader, but from I have seen, they were hardly trying.
        Also, the only good guy who stand in their way is the handsome oniichan.
        The issue of Yakou seemed so irrelevant in the end.

    3. Haha eternia, we generally fall on opposite ends of the anime enjoyment spectrum, so I am a bit comforted by the fact that you don’t like Tokyo Ravens.

      “But just before the end, she was killed by some feathers?”

      Ever heard ‘straw that broke the camel’s back’? She was already dying (from all of the above), the feathers were incidental–not that anime obeys real life physical laws, ever.

      Draggle’s right about reading between the lines. That’s what a good portion of enjoyment the show is about for me. There’s subtlety in between the bombast awesomeness– and not so subtle hints everywhere too. Foreshadow and suggest, followed up by revelation later on and more games of mystery.

      Tokyo Ravens likes to play the carrot in the shadows game. For me, there’s appeal in between what is directly said, there’s meaning to what’s not said, and how everything is done. It likes to culture an air of mystery and mysticism for the Onmyouji. That game isn’t for everyone, and it can easily leave certain folk lost and confused.

      From episode one (though probably the weakest), there’s hints that Harutora was Yakou and not everything was as it seemed. Tokyo Ravens liked to play the game of shadows, and with discoveries popping up foreshadowed by earlier hints. Hokuto’s pink ribbon being valued leads to girl both girl / crossdressing girl cherishing pink ribbon and main character slowly getting & struggling to accept it one step at a time (while his best friend is like, you’re stupid, but you’ll get it eventually). Invisible familiar mention by guard dogs leads to Kon’s appearance. Almost all little threads leading up to the big relevation and sham the family pulled the wool over everyone as a distraction to hide Harutora with cross-dressing cousin.

      Fool’ed them long enough, but enjoyable antics ensue along the way for monkey wrenches in the plan. Partially undid seal that kept harutora from magic, but our crossdresser didn’t know that– thinking he had none. When it is revealed later on to the astute watcher Harutora has way way way too much magic available to him (that he cannot use for the majority of the show). Hints are everywhere, and relevation comes later on. That’s a major part of the fun for me.

      That and you know, crazy awesome omnyoujis duels, fun self-aware characters, and competent adults (rare for anime) each with skills and playing their own games against each other.

      The Tokyo Ravens world isn’t all about students, there’s bigger factions and skilled individuals at play with interesting personalities and dynamic. Particularly like the D & Shadow mutual respect due to dynamic skill power, and strength of will due to willingness of self sacrifice.

      Be my familiar
      You know I’ll eat you up, right?
      Then I’ll battle you and sacrifice another leg.
      Ha I like that

      Contrasted with flame boy who is a one trick pony… he’ll never get D’s email.

      The character interaction is pretty great, and people are competent (unlike harry potter and most shows focused on special young characters where adults are useless).

      I had a lot of fun, and looked forward to this show. That’s the only recommendation I really need.

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