Posted by : Deborah Takahashi Sunday, August 18, 2013

Plot Summary:
In the kingdom of Fiore, the people of the land rely on the magic guilds that protect and defend their home. As for Lucy, she is set on becoming a famous wizard and the only way she can make it into the "Wizard Weekly" publication is to join a guild. Although she wasn't quite sure which guild to pick, she ultimately decided on Fairy Tail after she met Natsu and Happy. The moment she walked into Fairy Tail, she expected to see powerful and commanding wizards, but what she saw was quite the opposite: the wizards in Fairy Tail are literally a bunch of kids like her who are looking for acceptance and a family. Just like Lucy, everyone in the guild knows what its like to lose someone precious and, despite their faults and oddball tendencies, Lucy learns that Fairy Tail is literally the most powerful guild in the kingdom. Natsu (aka. Salamander) is a fire magic user, who was actually raised by a dragon, is one of the most powerful wizards of his age. Natsu's sidekick, Happy, is a super cute, blue cat who has the power to fly and has an obsession with fish. Gray is an ice magic user who is also quite powerful, but has a habit of losing his clothes. Erza Scarlet, the second in command, is the matriarch of the guild and is incredibly strong thanks to her armor magic. Fairy Tail is under the care of their master, Markarov, who they not only see as a mentor, but as a father figure. In this story arc, Lucy not only meets her new team mates, but she meets a unique group of people who would give their lives to protect her. For example, she meets Mira and Elfman (siblings who use magic to turn into animal like creatures), Cana (who uses card magic and has a drinking problem), Levy (who is part of the Shadow Group and can decode ancient texts), Loke (who uses ring magic and is a flirt), and many other interesting characters. Fairy Tail is a fun adventure where the purpose is to protect the innocent and one another at all costs.


Critical Evaluation:
Fairy Tail is such a blast! Not only is there a perfect mixture of humor, explosions, and fighting, there is a nice touch of drama and heartfelt moments. The main theme of this anime is that Fairy Tail is more than a guild: it's a family. In many ways, Fairy Tail is a sanctuary for those who need guidance, love, and support. Despite the rivalries, and the fighting, these wizards know the true meaning of friendship. Along with the story line, which isn't all that bad since most anime adaptations tend to stray away from the original story, the animation and graphics are spectacular! I just loved the intricate designs of the spell circles and loved seeing all the different colors. Granted, most of the female characters are pretty boob-a-licious (and there are quite a few hilarious naughty moments), this anime definitely appeals to the older, teen boy audience. However, teen girls will like it simply because Happy is just too cute for words! As for the English adaptation, viewers will continue to debate the original Japanese audio versus the English audio, but I am a believer in the talents of Funimation. As much as I love hearing the Japanese language, I can get burned out reading subtitles so I switch on the English dub. I usually enjoy hearing both Japanese and English versions because it's interesting to see how the different voices represent the characters. All in all, this series is a lot of fun and I am going to be adding this to my personal collection real soon!

Information about the Author & Director:
According to Wikipedia:
Hiro Mashima was born May 3, 1977 and is Japanese manga artist.His first success was the fantasy manga Rave, published by Kodansha's Weekly Shonen Magazine, from 1999 to 2005. The series was later adapted into an anime. However, the anime adaption was cancelled before it could complete the series.
In 2003, he collected some of his one-shot titles in two volumes: Mashima-en Vol.1 & 2. Those stories include, among others, Cocona, "Xmas Hearts" and "Fairy Tail", a sort of prototype for his latest work.
In 2006, he began his best known and current ongoing series, another fantasy manga called Fairy Tail, serialized in Kodansha's Weekly Shonen Magazine which has been adapted into an anime and has aired on TV Tokyo from October 2009 till March 2013. He also published the one-shot manga Monster Soul during the same year.
He was a notable guest at the 2008 San Diego Comic-Con and at the 2011 New York Anime Festival. He was influenced by Akira Toriyama and Hayao Miyazaki. He has one daughter.
Shinji Isihihara is known for directing the following anime series:
  • Log Horizon
  • Fairy tail
  • Air Gear
  • Yes! Precure 5
  • Koroshuya 1

Genre:
Teen Anime


Rating:
Ages 14 and up

Number of episodes:
12

Anime similar to Fairy Tail:
  • DragonBall Z
  • Soul Eater
Awards & Recognition:
From Wikipedia:
Fairy Tail won Animax Asia's "Anime of the Year" award in 2010. In 2012, the anime series won the "Meilleur Anime Japonais" (best Japanese anime) award and the best French dubbing award at the 19th Anime & Manga Grand Prix in Paris, France. In reviewing the first Funimation Entertainment DVD volume, Carlo Santos of Anime News Network praised the visuals, characters, and English voice acting, as well as the supporting characters for its comedic approach. However, Santos criticized both the anime's background music and CGI animation. In his review of the second volume, Santos also praised the development of "a more substantial storyline," but also criticized the inconsistent animation and original material not present in the manga. In  his review of the third volume, Santos praised the improvements of the story and animation, and said that the volume "finally shows the [anime] series living up to its potential.

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Deborah Takahashi
Pasadena, CA, United States
My name is Deb and I am a Librarian who absolutely loves to read and recommend books to teen and tween readers. In this blog, you will find reviews on a variety resources ranging from books, movies, video games, and much more. Please feel free to leave any feedback, especially book recommendations!
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