Friday, 24 October 2008

ef - a tale of melodies - Episode 3

To call the opening couple of episodes of ef - a tale of melodies a slow-burner would probably be something of an understatement, given the series propensity to feed us only tiny parts of the story while preferring to dazzle us with its artistic merit - A plan which, as I mentioned last time around, will only ever take you so far.

Thankfully, episode three finally starts to move us forward in a decent fashion as far as actual plot development is concerned. For starters, Chihiro (one of the main features of the first series) makes her reappearance here, and finally confirms to Mizuki the shocking news that we'd all pretty much already guessed - That Kuze is a dying man. To her credit, that doesn't put her off at all, but Kuze himself seems determined to distance himself from anyone who could possibly regarded as caring about him, as well as seemingly wanting to rid himself of his musical talent for whatever reason. Looking at the other half of the story, Yu becomes drawn in closer to Yuuko as we learn more about her current situation, although I have to wonder exactly where Nagi is going to fit into this particular side of things (beyond becoming some kind of shining beacon of fan service for the series).

So, I can't really put my hand on my heart and say that this third instalment of ef - a tale of melodies has entirely convinced me that it's going anywhere, but it has at least started to lay down some of the building blocks of a more interesting story even if it's taken rather a long time to get there. There's a lot to like about the visuals of this show, as it does have a certain stylistic uniqueness to it, but pretty pictures alone does not a good anime make, and I still earnestly believe that a tale of memories needs to do a lot more to even live up to its predecessor, let alone surpass it.

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