Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Sola - Completed Review

What is it?

Sola is the story of a guy who meets a immortal being that he falls for. Meanwhile, his sister is in the hospital for unknown reasons. Anyways, this guy is a sky-enthusiast (if such a thing exists) taking pictures, painting and just about spending all his time admiring the sky. Ironically, his new friend can't watch a sunny sky because she burns when in contact of sunlight. What a bummer. Turns out Sis has a similar ailment and know what, I'm gonna stop there. This show is a bitch to summarize.

What's good about it?

Comparisons between Sola and Kanon are often made for easy reasons. Both shows are made by the same people, the animation is identical and character designs are very similar. Both feature a similar supernatural plot and elements. Both are shows with one guy and plenty of girls surrounding him (though you shouldn't for the life of you put this down in the harem/ecchi genre). Both stories take place in small towns with landmarks important to the story. Being the great show that Kanon is, any comparisons to it should be a compliment to that series and in some ways it is.

What's bad about it?

Sola is no Kanon. The most obvious downside to Sola is that it fails to stand as tall as Kanon in almost every category besides animation. The dialogue is nowhere near as witty and funny. In fact the whole show was very serious throughout. Even when the characters were joking around, the delivery was poor and the effect was tangibly minimal. Which brings me to the characters. Though the characters were pretty well developed, none were particularly endearing or charming. Basically, everyone is boring and their motives are not very believable due to their predicaments. Which brings me to the story. The supernatural takes overwhelming precedent as the series progresses and leaves a taste of incredulity in my mouth and by the end, nothing is shocking or even really matters. Finally, the show ,being only 13 episodes long, feels condensed, especially since it has to rush to make up for a slow starting pace.

Final Verdict

After all that criticism, you would probably assume my rating for the series would be poor. You would be wrong. I've spent my review describing why it falls short to its predecessor, and it does. However, if you take it on its own, the series is pretty decent. The story is rich and leaves no loose ends. The big budget animation is among the best you'll get in a series and while you may feel the plot borrows a lot from Kanon, if you hadn't see Kanon, you would find the story creative and refreshing.

Sure Sola is a poor man's Kanon. But the comparisons could have been drawn to a lot worse


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