Record of Lodoss War, is, simply the best anime series I've ever seen. Sure, it's old school, and some of the scenes and characters reflect that fact, but the story line and characters make... See full summary »
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On the cursed island continent of Lodoss, a party of adventurers becomes caught up in the struggle against a plot to conquer Lodoss and revive a long-dormant ancient evil deity. This thirteen-part Japanese television series is based on a series of Japanese novels, and is notable among other things for its inclusion of elements from the Dungeons & Dragons (TM) role-playing game.Written by
Christopher E. Meadows <email@example.com>
Episodes 1-8 of this series are based on original novel #1 of Record of Lodoss War by Ryo Mizuno, called "The Grey Witch". There are also manga and graphic novels by the same title based on this original novel available from CPM Manga. Episodes 9-13 are loosely based on the original novels #3,4,6,7 in the Lodoss War series. The story developed in these last episodes is unique to this animated series from the original story Mr. Mizuno developed. The later animated series "Record of Lodoss War: Chronicles of the Heroic Knight" follows the original novels and "corrects the record" starting after the end of episode 8 of this series. See more »
In episode two, Parn's shirt is torn and his arm his cut during his fight with the goblins in the forest, but in subsequent shots, the damage has disappeared, only to reappear later. See more »
[Slayn conjures a spell against attacking gargoyles]
Omnipotent power, creator of all things, forged by the gods from eternal chaos, throw off these false garments and reveal thy true forms. Creators of all things, become a shield to protect me. Great protectors, do not allow those who would destroy your great works to do their bidding in this sacred place. Use me as your weapon against this evil.
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The credits are accompanied by a series of drawings featuring elves. Included among them is a picture of Deedlit and Parn. See more »
Escapism at it's best, this is by far my favorite anime. It is different than others I've enjoyed because it's a little less serious or pretentious and a bit simpler but still somehow more touching because of it's unrelenting charm. The characters are irresistible, most notably the cute and often giggling High Elf Deedlit, as beautiful as she's skilled in mastering the elemental forces of nature. She is attracted to the young wannabe knight Parn who often crosses the line between bravery and foolishness and is rather oblivious to Deed's affections, which is good for some comic relief. Parn and Deedlit are what make the show, but the supporting characters are wonderful as well. Such as the Dwarf Ghim, in name not very different from Lord Of The Rings's Gimli, but he actually has a more interesting backstory. Woodchuck is your typical thieving scoundrel, Slayn a mysterious and wise wizard that is way cooler than Gandalf ever could be. Etoh is a noble cleric, a typical healer and a fine character as well but he doesn't get enough to do. A minor gripe because clearly the characters form a solid foundation and are what make a Lodoss great series.
The story was based on game sessions of the famous board game, Dungeons & Dragons. Don't worry, because writer Ryo Mizuno must have been a great Dungeon Master, the plot is thoroughly enjoyable and has anything you could want in a classical fantasy story: magic, a witch, Orcs, ancient Dragons, a Dark and a High Elf, you name it. The only character I missed in the party was an archer. There's a good balance between action and dialog.
The story can be confusing at times, out of order chronologically or raise the wrong expectations, because certain plot points get brushed over too quickly or just plain skipped. But mostly I would just feel for these characters, with their adventures and their flaws and I often couldn't wait to see what would happen next. Ultimately it's a story about the balance between light and darkness, the battle between good and evil, but this simplicity didn't bother me at all, it's just part of it's old fashioned charm.
The music is what truly makes the show magical: the soundtrack is sublime. It's mostly a wonderful classical score but at the beginning and end of each show there is some J-Pop which will grow on you as well.
The anime is beautifully drawn. Clearly there are the typical tricks to reduce animation work and the show could have been superior with a bigger budget. But with what little they had, they did extremely well. The colors and facial expressions are always spot on and the world of Lodoss and it's inhabitants is a joy to watch.
The English dub is very good. Personally I always prefer English dubs over the Japanese ones because I just can't stand it if the male and female voices are about 4 octaves apart from each other. But this anime is particularly known to have an above average English dub with pretty good voice work. It's worth it for Deedlit's giggling alone!
Occasionally a little bloody, this may not be suitable for all kids. But Lodoss is timeless fun, incredibly charming and a classic to watch again and again from time to time. I'd be hungry for many, many more episodes but unfortunately they don't make them like this anymore...
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