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falan's Jigoku Shoujo Tv Review

Jigoku Shoujo

Jigoku Shoujo tv Review

Rumor has it that somewhere on the Internet there is a website accessible only at midnight -- the Hotline to Hell -- where people can ask the Hell Girl to take revenge on people who have wronged them. However, when one person is cursed, two graves are dug, for if the Hell Girl fulfils your request, you too will be consigned to the pit of Hell when you die. Would you untie the red ribbon and sell your soul to the Hell Girl for vengeance?

Description: shinsengumi

Story & Characters

There are people the world would be better off without. Not just mass murderers or rapists, but people that may live down the block or even in your own house. This is where Hajime and his daughter Tsugumi disagree. While Tsugumi can find justice in the revenge the Jigoku Shoujo grants, Hajime insists that it's not the way. Who is right, the child or the adult? Is it really so simple, that everything is black and white, either wrong or right? This series explores many different believable situations, diving into the human psyche, leaving each viewer to decide for themselves whether the antagonist really deserved their fate or not. Things are shaken up quite a bit sometimes, but at the core, each story follows the same basic formula -- someone calls the Jigoku Shoujo and gets revenge on who wronged them -- the circumstances are all radically different, yet they're all believable; despite this, it can get repetitive for some. As Hajime and Tsugumi each come to their own conclusions, the mysteries of Enma Ai are explored and unraveled convincingly, enough even for most of the skeptics.

Rating: 8

Art

What often takes away from some series works brilliantly in Jigoku Shoujo. The overly simplistic style added to the credibility, leaving no unique character designs whatsoever, making it easier to imagine each protagonist and antagonist as people that could really exist. The recycling of bits of animation often seems like laziness, but here it shows the audience that sentencing people to hell has become routine for Enma Ai by now. However, the CGI used primarily for fire or supernatural elements was not mixed well with the rest of the animation.

Rating: 8

Sound

The voice actors for the three main characters each surprised me, most particularly Yuji Ueda (Hajime). Nana Mizuki was able to realistically portray the voice of a seven-year-old girl, something notable in the anime industry, since the children often sound either too much like babies or too old. All three were able to convincingly express even the most intense of emotions. It was also interesting just how many voice actors memorable for their performances in other series made appearances in this series as the protagonists, antagonists, and even characters who only spoke about five lines. (I lawled when I recognized Kappei Yamaguchi instantly, you can really pick his voice out anywhere) However, the performances of Ai's three straw dolls seemed weak at times, particularly when the characters were yelling; the voices just sounded forced.

The opening and ending themes were appropriately selected. The soft poprock melody of the opening was actually quite catchy, and the lyrics fit the series pretty well. Summarizing the mood and atmosphere of the end of each episode, the ending theme, performed by Mamiko Noto (Ai) also fit wonderfully.

Rating: 9

Presentation

The consequences of selling your soul to the devil is a concept that's been used and abused over time. However, this time there's no tricks, double meanings, implications, or fine print. The caller of the Jigoku Shoujo is told outright what awaits them should they make a contract with Ai, and even given a glimpse of hell so the decision isn't taken lightly. Fully understanding the consequences, they choose to make a contract anyway.

This series is not for everyone though. Some will find themselves uncomfortable with being confronted with the question of whether revenge can be justified or not. Some simply will grow impatient with the extremely slow pacing of the series. However, for others those factors will make this an instant favorite.

Rating: 7

Final Verdict

7.83 (good)

Reviewed by falan, Jul 25, 2006

Comments

  1. harakiri Jul 27, 2006

    I think that you have rated presentation and story too high. I mean, until the series develops some kind of plot we get confronted with countless short stories about revenge. The funny thing about those short stories is that every single one of them ends in the same way and there is no change of consequences (I mean, nobody decides not to take revenge at the end). Tsugumi and Hajime enter at around episode 10 but they don't really have an effect on the events.

  2. aikur Feb 02, 2009

    yeah the story is weak but the the show stills holds together for an average show

  3. rukasu04 Mute Member May 04, 2009

    Jigoku Shoujo is a good anime and story too :D

  4. SchRita Feb 05, 2010

    Thanks for the review!

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