Kemono Friends Anime Review : Gets Too Phenomenal

Kemono_Friends_SS02Kemono Friends is a phenomenal anime aired in winter 2017. It gets too phenomenal so you’ll find many people were doing many creative stuffs with this anime. A little bit information about Kemono Friends background, it was originally introduced as Mobile Phone Game (Mobage) on March 2015 by Nexon. Following the release of Mobage, a manga was also introduced in May 2015. The mobage however, has been closed since December 2016, just a month before the anime was aired. The manga serves as the prequel of the anime. So, you would want to get your hands on the manga just like me. However, in our current situation, getting the manga kinda is out of reach.

Now moving to the TV Anme , it was produced by Yaoyorozu, aired in Japan between January 10, 2017 and March 28, 2017. A short episode of 12.1 which takes timeline in the middle of episode 12 was uploaded to Youtube on April 1, 2017 as a bonus content.

Story
A girl with hat found herself in a savanna area of Japari Park wondering nowhere without understanding the situation she is in. Suddenly, another girl with ears and tail come to get her. Later, the girl with ears and tail introduced herself as Serval. The girl with hat however, doesn’t seem to have any memories about her past. Therefore, Serval named her Kaban-chan based on the bag (Kaban) she wears. The following and next episodes tell us the journey of how Kaban-chan trying to find out about herself. What kind animal or species she is and where does she actually belongs. I can’t spoil too much about the story because it will ruin the fun of those who haven’t watched the anime.

My impression about the story is deep. It makes me a bit emotional, especially the final episode. Every quests in this anime has been answered but some mysteries remain not clear, giving a room for sequel. I do hope they will make a sequel to uncover every fact of this anime. I think, the manga will also provide us more clue about the concept of Kemono Friends World. Overall, I am almost satisfy with the story. It was unexpectedly great. At first, the story feels very common and childish, but later it grows to be much deeper than I thought.

Animation
This anime uses 3D Anime shader for everything which is kinda unusual but not the first time. The 3D animation is good but still not good enough to be considered very good. It is simple and gets the job done but lack of details. Pretty much like 3D anime shader in many Japanese games out there I think.

Music
While the music is generally good, there are times where the music feel unbalanced. I can still go with that and maybe many of you don’t mind either. The opening theme is “Youkoso Japari Park e” (ようこそジャパリパークへ), by Doubutsu Biscuits×PPP, while the ending theme is “Boku no Friend” (ぼくのフレンド) by Mewhan. Doubutsu Biscuits consists of Ozaki Yuka, Ono Saki , and Motomiya Kana while PPP (pronounced as PePaPu) consists of Sasaki Mikoi, Nemoto Ruka, Ikuko Chikuta, Aiba Aina, and Tamura Kyouka. The opening song was so popular. You’ll find many people doing cover for the opening song in many different and unique ways.

Characters

So much characters are available in this anime. It is rather confusing explain them one by one. The main characters are Kaban-chan and Serval-chan. Kaban-chan is voiced by Uchida Aya while Serval-chan is voiced by Ozaki Yuka who is a shinjin seiyuu. The other characters makes their appearance a long the way in the story but mainly only featured in one episode and in the last episode. They have many different personalities assigned to them based on the animals. Also, for a bit of knowledge, the original Serval-chan in game is voiced by Nonaka Ai and she makes appearance too in the anime.

Voice Acting
Kemono_Friends_casts.jpg

PPP, back, left to right :
Aiba Aina, Chikuta Ikuko, Sasaki Mikoi, Nemoto Ruka, Tamura Kyouka
Doubutsu Biscuits, front, left to right :
Ono Saki, Ozaki Yuka, Motomiya Kana

With the massive number of more than 30 characters, there are so many voice actresses as well. But unlike Girlfriend Kakko Kari which got so many popular voice actresses, there aren’t many popular seiyuu in Kemono Friends. Perhaps budget can be taken into consideration as well. Mostly, they do their job just fine but clearly not in the level of Girlfriend Kakko Kari or Girls und Panzer. I was happy to learn that Uchida Aya has the lead character role. She not a shinjin seiyuu after all. However, after listening to her voice acting as Kaban-chan… Why the heck her voice acting sounds like a shinjin seiyuu too?! Ucchii and Ozaki Yuka voice acting sounds like they are on the same level. From the popularity of Kemono Friends, I’d say Ozaki Yuka already secured a place in the next seiyuu awards as Best Rookie Voice Actress. Her line “Sugooi” and “Tanoshii” become so popular after all.

Final Thoughts
Unexpected! Exceptional! This anime doesn’t have the material to become the best anime. But judging from the phenomenal popularity of this anime, I’d say this anime beats the expectation of the creators by significant margin! In the story alone, the progress of the first half of the story is rather slow but accelerates on the second half. The climax is unexpected and the resolution is (almost) satisfying. Still, I really hope they would make a sequel because it is clear that the anime leave us a room for a sequel!

Story 9
Animation 7
Sounds & Musics 8
Characters 9
Voice Acting 7
Overall 8
Rated as Excellent

Pros :
(+) Unexpectedly great storyline
(+) Many characters with different personalities but they can keep the story focuses on two main charas

Cons :
(-) Some mysteries about the background of the story remains unclear

Kemono_Friends_SS40.jpg

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