Top 5 Anime With Fairies

Tuesday's Top 5

Fairies are fun to see in stories because there’s so many variations and forms on the idea of what a fairy is. From The Seven Deadly Sins to Amagi Brilliant Part, fairies show up over and over again. This list are my favourite appearances of fairies in anime (not necessarily best anime).

As always, I’d love to know your take on the list so please leave me a comment with your favourite anime that includes fairies.

Number 5: Midnight Occult Civil Servants

While starting his new job, Arata finds himself dealing with creatures called Anothers and as the only one who can understand them he ends up having to negotiate with these beings on numerous occasions. One of my favourite groups that turned up from time to time throughout the stories were the little fairies that lived in the park. Whether they were mad because the humans messed up their offerings or allowing themselves to be bribed for directions with cookies, these little creatures were always cute when they showed up.

Number 4: The Ancient Magus’ Bride

I genuinely couldn’t have made this list and left The Ancient Magus’ Bride off of it. This one gets points for being very detailed in its folklore and taking a more traditional approach to fairies and their rules. While they may not be as cute as some of the other entries, the attention to folklore here gives this one a well-deserved place and while the anime ended up dragging on a little bit, the magic and magical creatures were definitely a highlight and worth watching for.

Number 3: Sword Art Online Fairy Dance Arc

This may well be one of the most hated of all the SAO arcs and yet while the end of this arc brings us a psycho villain whose motive and actions are entirely flawed, the game that this arc is set in looks beautiful. The different fairy races that the characters can choose from, the flight mechanics, and the magic are just brilliant and I’d honestly love to play this game (provided it wasn’t being run by a made person using it to test mind control on people).

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FAIRY TAIL 1/6 SCALE PRE-PAINTED FIGURE: ERZA SCARLET BUNNY GIRL_STYLE / TYPE ROSSO

Number 2: WorldEnd

Here’s a different kind of fairy. These ones I’m never really sure if they are actually fairies, leprechauns, or something else entirely but it is a fun take on the story and the girls are all quite fun to get to know. Used to fight beasts with magic weapons and slowly losing control of their powers or losing their memories, the story here is tragic and yet quite compelling for the most part. If only the mid-season had managed to hold up its end this one would have a lot more discussion around it.

Number 1: Humanity Has Declined

How on Earth could I not have put these adorable and incredibly creepy fairies as the number one on the list. The story takes place as humans are declining and fairies have returned. The main character has the job of liaising with the fairies as they pursue new entertainments. They latch on to any idea and go crazy with it but just as quickly move onto the next thing (kind of like watching the progress of the internet in fast forward really). Whichever way, these little guys are a must see.

And that’s my list this week but be sure to let me know what your favourite anime with fairies are.

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Karandi James
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Fairy Gone Review Episode 9

A Train Derailment To Set The Story Straight

Fairy Gone Episode 9

After making an assassination attempt against the prime minister dull, I wasn’t expecting much from Fairy Gone despite a certain other blogger’s assurances that things were about to get somewhat more interesting. After 8 episodes of poor pacing, badly timed or irrelevant flash backs, action sequences that look like they should be cool but really don’t pull it off, and having characters that I’ve struggled to care about, Fairy Gone found its groove in episode 9 and managed twenty minutes of actually pretty compelling viewing.

Okay, I like looking at fancy swords.

This is the issue with episodic reviewing. This episode doesn’t make the previous 8 suddenly better. They were pretty tiresome to watch outside of a potentially intriguing premise. However, this episode couldn’t have worked without those previous 8 episodes. Whether or not this is a turning point that means this series is going to go from one that is fairly missable to one that is worth checking out remains to be seen, but there’s suddenly some light at the end of the tunnel.

The political situation in Fairy Gone is pretty complicated with almost everyone out for themselves and running their own agenda. There are so many factions, organisations, and government branches that it really is difficult to keep them all straight. That said, when we get a simple complication such as the transportation of an important weapon and the guys who are clearly trying to steal it, though whether that is because they want the weapon or because they want to undermine Dorothea’s authority remains to be seen, things get a great deal more interesting.

I mentioned in a previous review that I was wondering whether or not Dorothea was actually competent given they don’t seem to have succeeded at much since the start of the anime. This episode, while wonderfully dramatic and tense as the enemy derails the train carriage and rains bullets down upon them before liberally cutting down any sign of resistance from Dorothea, really demonstrated how under powered they are for the job they apparently have.

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The dramatic injury and subsequent death of one of their members kind of pins the severity of the situation but once again, Fairy Gone just hasn’t quite done enough to make me overly concerned about that particular character. More worrying is the impact this will have on Marlya and it is interesting that the flashback we got before the fight broke out (after the train derailed) was of Marlya learning to hunt. For the first time it felt like a meaningful placement of a flashback and one that might have consequences. As such, it felt like the death was less about making us feel sad for the now deceased character, and more about motivating Marlya into some kind of action.

Also, the villain is one of those smug over-confident types who lectures his opponents as he cuts them down and leaves them alive to get stronger to fight again. I hate this kind of villain at the best of times and in this situation it just seemed ridiculous.

However, despite the few complaints, the episode worked. It drew me back into the story and made me wonder what the next steps would be. I also had to wonder what the consequence of this failure would be for the organisation. Fairy Gone isn’t suddenly getting amazing but  this was certainly a much appreciated step in the right direction.

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Fairy Gone Review Episode 6

Fewer Things Worse Than Being Dull

Episode 1

I’m struggling thinking of things to say about this week’s episode of Fairy Gone. Where previous episodes have left me a little curious about the premise and a little disappointed in the execution, episode 6 managed to hit that really terrible point in watching where I had to honestly say I was bored while watching. It wasn’t the absence of fight sequences, or the serious lack of fairies outside of the artificial ones, it was just that the episode felt like nothing was happening.

On reflection, quite a bit happened, but that doesn’t take away the fact that while watching Fairy Gone I had this overwhelming feeling that I was in the endless elevator listening to that irritating music over and over and I wasn’t getting anywhere.

The bright side is that they’ve come up with a new gimmick to start episodes outside of flashbacks. Now they just directly narrate the history to us and join it into the episode through some awkward dialogue. No kidding. This week we got a history lesson of the first prime minister and the five dukes and then we cut to the old guys and the pub arguing about the dukes and so the episode begins.

The jury is still out on whether this approach is better or worse than decontextualised flashbacks in terms of starting an episode.

Free and Marlya then patrol the city because the anniversary of the end of the war is coming up and during their patrol one of the automated soldier things goes a little crazy for reasons Dorothea never seems to figure out but the audience was shown exactly what happened. It just adds to the overall impression that Dorothea is a little bit useless.

Anyway, forget that, because now Marlya is getting sent after a rumoured black tome once again and what follows is perhaps the slowest and dullest train pursuit sequence ever.

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Things kind of come together at the end of the episode but to be perfectly honest the characters have spent most the episode just kind of meandering about, they haven’t figured out a single thing, and it isn’t as though this was a pause to develop some of these characters because other than a Marlya-woe-is-me-I-have-no-parents moment there was nothing going on that could be counted as characterisation.

Fairy Gone not being very good I could handle. Fairy Gone being boring is a different story and if it doesn’t find its way to slightly interesting again soon I think I’ll let this one go from my watch list.

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Humanity Has Declined Series Review: A Spark Of Brilliance Followed Adequately

Overview:

In search of a decent way to explain the plot I kind of gave up and let Wikipedia do the heavy lifting:

Humanity Has Declined is set in a post-apocalyptic world where the human civilization has regressed and humanity keeps decreasing in numbers. The story follows an unnamed girl who acts as a mediator between humanity and the “fairies” who are small elf-like creatures attracted by sweets and happy things, but also have the habit to cause trouble to her with their powers in their endless search for amusement.

Review:

I had heard of this series but hadn’t given it much thought but when I came across it on HiDive at the same time as I was looking to see how the app went streaming to my TV, this seemed like a good test series and so I gave it a go and was soon joined by a friend who stuck his head in just to see what was up with the overly cute song and stayed, intrigued by the truly surreal viewing experience that the first two episodes of this show become.

See, the first two episodes are essentially the end of the story (because for the sake of being gimmicky each two episodes tell a story and each story occurs before the one you’ve just watched until you kind of get the start of the story with the final two episodes). What that means is you are dropped head first into a world with references to events you have no context for and some truly, truly bizarre things occurring (even by anime standards). The ridiculously cute fairies that have an incredibly dark view of life that they deliver dead pan while grinning psychotically (although that actually appears to be their standard expression), the assistant who thinks a joke involves a story where everyone dies (although my friend and I nearly fell off the couch laughing), oh and the revolution of the synthetic, sentient, skinned chickens. Can’t forget that last part, it is kind of important particularly if you want to get the Hitman parody in the final few minutes of the episode.

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So yeah, the first two episodes are pretty brilliant if for no other reason than you cannot look away as this strange and quirky tale unfolds. None of the characters have names but are usually referred to by their job or relationship. The main girl is regularly the granddaughter or referred to as a human by the fairies and the assistant is only ever called assistant. There is one episode far later down the track where the girl attempts to name the fairies but like most fads the fairies get caught up in, this one doesn’t stick and is well and truly forgotten by the first two episodes which I guess are actually the end of the story.

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I don’t actually have an issue with non-linear narrative or even stories that want to be told backwards, I just want there to be a point to it. The only thing the reverse order added in this case was that those first two episodes are fantastically novel and interesting and they do leave you wanting to know why something happened and what it was that happened to lead to something else. And that is pretty standard through the series as each story will mention at least one previous event that we will later see unfold. Otherwise, it really adds nothing and what it really means is there is no satisfying resolution to story and we never go back far enough to find out why humanity are in decline other than they are. Not that it really matters because this show is making observations of life and parodies of other shows but doesn’t seem to be overly concerned with thematic continuity other than the ephemeral nature of life.

Humanity

The opening song is ridiculously cute and boppy and when I first started watching I nearly hit the stop button but there was something slightly fascinating about it and so I kept watching. By the final episode I couldn’t stop my toes from tapping along even as my head was screaming about how wrong it was. Basically it is infectiously fun.

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The fairies remain the selling point of the series. Their observations and random questions always make for an intriguing mine field of thoughts that will never really get an answer but at least get you wondering. The only issue being that the fairies remain an enigma. Their purpose, other than to seek out fun new experiences (and sugar), is never understood. They build some marvellous things throughout the course of the series and they almost all crumble within the instant.

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I had fun with this series but like with a lot of shows that rely on comedy and gags, the fiftieth time you see a fairy respond with something that seems really quite dark in an overly cute way it doesn’t have quite the same impact. And none of the later episodes ever held up to the sheer enjoyment the first two gave. Still, if you haven’t given it a go, it was certainly worth the time to watch.

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WorldEnd: What do you do at the end of the world? Are you busy? Will you save us? Series Review: Someone Save Us From These Titles

Overview:

This is a story that takes place after the world has ended, humanity has been destroyed, and the species that survive now live on floating islands. However, the beasts still attack and so fairy weapons are kept to use magic swords to fight them. Willem, the only surviving human, is recruited to take care of the fairy weapons only he learns they are young girls who are basically being sent to their deaths.

I reviewed this week to week so if you are interested in my individual episode thoughts click here.

Review:

I was not planning on watching this show this season. The excessively long title, the cute characters, everything about it just screamed that this was a light novel train wreck waiting to happen. But I did watch the first episode because I like to give things a go, and amazingly enough the first episode of this show is actually really, really good. There are issues even in that first episode with how the characters are set up and the story being a little bit nebulous, but the delivery is great, the music goes perfectly, and it is just kind of a joy to watch.

WorldEnd1b

Then what happens is we have a whole series of ups and downs. There are some truly spectacular and emotional moments in this series. There are some great character moments. There’s some funny moments. Then there’s a lot of cute girls being cute, long drawn out side stories, too many characters being given focus when they aren’t really needed, an absence of the overall plot feeling like it is progressing, and the main characters just never quite clicking into their assigned roles. The show is working hard, I’ll give it credit for that, but there’s a lot of moments during the series where dropping seems like a perfectly fine option because while this never gets to terrible, there’s a lot of episodes that aren’t good.

WorldEnd12

Then we get to the final episode and it is like that first episode all over again. You could walk away and feel great that you made it through, stuck it out, and that it was all worth it. And really, it is. Not watching week to week, this show would be signficantly better because a lot of that fluffing about in the middle wouldn’t feel so drawn out and the bits of narrative would feel closer together. Not to mention, you would get that excellent ending so much earlier and you probably wouldn’t be trying to pick it to pieces.

So I’m left wondering if I enjoyed this series overall or not.

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I’m going with yes. For all that there are definitely lows in this series and they probably could have halved the character count and actually ended up with a more focussed story, I really did enjoy spending time with Willem and Chtholly. Okay, part of my enjoyment comes from just how broken both of these characters are inside even while they smile and joke and try to carry everyone else (I really do have a thing for characters like this and I’ve never understood why but if I lined up my favourite characters they would all be very broken people). But part of my enjoyment comes from the fact that they are characters that you want to know more about and you want to see them somehow get through what they are facing even when you know they aren’t going to. While the romance aspect didn’t work so well for me with these two, I definitely feel the two connected and needed one another and that worked really well and made the final all the more satisfying.

Oh and did I mention the music. The music is a real selling point for this one.

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However, I’m certain I said this somewhere in my write ups while watching this, I feel that now that the show is done, I’d like a different team to take it apart, cut out all the excess and unnecessary bits, and put together that much better story that runs through the whole thing. It would end up half the length but I think it could be spectacular. Those moments are there already, but they are getting buried beneath average sequences and scenes and scenes that are good but have no purpose here (and while they might be setting up later events for the story, they don’t do anything for the narrative in this series).

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Overall, I’d definitely recommend trying this but just know going in that this show is very uneven in its tone and delivery. You’ll be on the edge of your seat, smiling, crying, nodding along in one sequence and in another you’ll just be sitting back wondering when they are going to get back to something that matters (and please can something squish the green fairy girl now, I don’t want to go shopping with her again).


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WorldEnd Episode 12

Review:

I was kind of wondering where this show would end given how it began, and it doesn’t really disappoint. The final episode is extremely reminiscent of the first, including bringing back specific scenes we saw at the start of the first episode and the great use of music (missed that during the middle of this series). Basically the fight to save the airship continues and comes to its conclusion. If you want to know how the overall war goes or the whole story with the floating islands or even what is going to happen to the other fairy weapons, sorry to say but you are going to end up disappointed.

WorldEnd12

This episode really takes us through Willem’s mind-set before Chtholly swoops in to save the day in spectacular, though slightly suicidal, fashion.

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While their relationship has never really been all that believable, this final episode really makes you feel the connection between them (even if you still don’t buy it as a romance). The fight sequence that has them both running an internal monologue mirroring the other’s really works and makes this final sequence quite touching (the music helps a lot with this). The episode then ends and while at first it feels complete you then just think about the sheer number of unanswered questions and realise this story is nowhere near done and yet the show has just given you a farewell.

I’ll write a whole series review soon, but this final episode was a very solid way for this show to end.

WorldEnd is available on Crunchyroll.


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WorldEnd Episode 9

Review:

This episode continues to focus on Chtholly and her disintegration, focussing on her loss of memories. Early in the episode Ithea reveals that she did in fact lose her memories and woke up in a body that wasn’t her and the only reason she’s been able to pretend to be the person everyone knew was because she read the diary left behind by the previous Ithea. This seems a little far-fetched that someone could mimic another based on reading their diary and kind of undermines the totally different person theory if the only actual difference is a lack of memories. More importantly, what it reveals is that the fairy doesn’t die or lose their power because Ithea has been bouncing around and fighting anyway.

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So, for something that should have been a fairly massive reveal (character you thought you knew turned out to be a fake), it actually amounts to pretty much nothing.

There was another question I came upon in this episode and that is the idea of the dug weapons being made up of other charms. This we’ve been told before but in this episode Willem actually has removed a charm from one of the weapons to use (for a pretty trivial purpose).

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Part of me wonders if this is foreshadowing something with the weapons or whether it is just another random occurence in a show that continues to seem really uneven in its execution. Anyway, I wasn’t really sold on this episode. It’s watchable but doesn’t really hit any of the emotional marks it seems to aim for and unless you were desperate to see Chtholly in a wedding dress there’s really not a lot to recommend this particular episode.

WorldEnd is available on Crunchyroll.


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