|Original Manga||Nisio Isin (light novel)|
|Episode Length||24 minutes|
|# of Eps/Volumes||15|
Sum it up in a Sentence
A half-vampire teenager, a homeless dude, and a gigantic tease are meta as fuck as they help out other teenagers with "oddity" problems.
Koyomi Araragi catches a girl falling down the stairs at his school, only to discover said girl barely weighs anything despite her appearance. The girl, Hitagi Senjogahara, staples his mouth to keep him from talking, but being the awesome goody two-shoes he is Koyomi decides to help her out anyway by taking her to a middle-aged homeless man named Meme Oshino. Oshino cured him of being a vampire, and with his help, Araragi seeks to help Senjogahara with her problem too.
So begins a series of mini-arcs as Araragi gets into shouting matches with a handful of crazy women who all have their own oddities: a little girl with a snail-like backpack, a lesbian with an evil gorilla arm, a classmate cursed to die with a snake tattoo, and more.
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I feel that Bakemonogatari was designed around the characters entirely, effectively making a plot based on their interactions. Bakemonogatari is a mood piece. Each character's personality is extreme.
The way the characters talked with each other was entirely realistic, given their personalities. At times the anime is creepy, but I feel that it was intentionally so.
This anime is worth checking out simply because of the vibrant characters and how they interact with one another. It was profound not in a deep or moving way, but as you would find in a satire.
This is a terrible show that likes to pretend its high art, so otakus can pretend they are cultured. Its full of creepy fanservice involving underaged girls.
I have feeling Bakemonogatari is a love it or hate it show. I personally loved it a lot. Bakemonogatari is more focused on character interactions. With that in mind, there will be a lot of dialogue, and knowing Shaft, a lot of text. The show does pull off the dialogue between characters very well and does have an interesting premise. If you love a show focusing on character interactions definitely give this a shot.
I think the best words to describe this show are "abstractly stylistic". That description pervades every aspect of the show, from the art direction to the directing style. But despite all the fantastic technical aspects of the show, it seems pretty obvious that SHAFT was working on their usual budget of bread and water. The animation is generally very simple and is often interjected with both text and image stills, but they were designed and interjected in such a way that they became stylistically fascinating.
Because of its abstract nature and the fact that most of the show is driven by character dialog this is an easy show to hate, but there is still a lot to like overall from the art to the characters. Give it a few episodes and see if it's your cup of tea.
The Devil Tesla
Harem anime for the sophisticated pedophile.
I legitimately believe the Monogatari franchise is good fiction. But it isn't good because it's espousing some big complex theme, or because it's an unassailable bastion of great literature. No, Monogatari is good because of how it plays within its own confines. I usually call it "the thinkin' man's harem anime", and that is really the entire conceit. It's a harem anime that takes its concept and its characters completely, 100%, stone-faced seriously. Which isn't to say it's not lighthearted or comedic, that's not quite right. What I mean is that Monogatari takes the typical teen power-fantasy narrative that the harem genre is built on, and uses that to build the entirety of its dramatic structure. It makes the story about a hapless everyman white-knighting a bunch of cute girls, by having him battle the manifestations of their own literal inner demons. It ruminates on what kind of emotional trauma people would need to carry to fit into customary harem archetypes. And it explores what that kind of trauma and psychosis would do to the girls who don't "win". That's the Monogatari franchise in a nutshell: a really clever take on a really, really dumb idea. Naturally, this means it does still carry some of the baggage that comes with the territory, but the show's overall ambition mostly elevates the material above it. It's about adolescence and self-identity; about moving forward and letting go. It's about how people construct realities, and tear themselves down. Monogatari is a story about people. Dynamic people with complex flaws and contradictory desires. It is also occasionally about boobs and lolis. Nothing's perfect. Monogatari does feel like it comes pretty damn close sometimes, though.