Genre: Fantasy / Comedy
Parental Guidance Recommended
1996. Katayama Ichiroh (director). Hiroshi Yamagi (creator). Group Tack, Media Works, Sotsu Agency. Screenshots courtesy of AnimeArt
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Those Who Hunt Elves Manga
Everything Those Who Hunt Elves
It all began when three people from the real world mysteriously disapperead, only to find themselves in a strange new land where elves and human beings co-exist. Since their appearance caused great disturbance among the people and their world, Celcia, leader of the elves, decided to help them return home. The elven priestess was to perform a ceremony that would create a map leading the outsiders back to their world, and she was not to be disturbed while doing it. Since the map was to be printed all over her body, she would have to take off all clothing after the ceremony. This little tidbit got to the thick-headed Junpei (one of the three), however, and he was unable to keep his mouth shut with his caustic remarks. This got Celcia so distracted (and majorly ticked-off), she never even got to the stripping part! As a result, parts of the map flew off in five different directions--and became etched in the skins of five different elves. Now the only way to get back home, is to find those elves. And if it means stripping all those magically-empowered elves butt-naked, so be it!
Another feel-good anime. >>> by thundersenshi
Those Who Hunt Elves is mostly character-driven, since it has a very simple plot. Airi was a celebrated actress before she got mixed-up in elf world, and she now uses her talent and brilliant mind to reach their goal. Ritsuko, who at first appeared to be an ordinary Japanese schoolgirl, turns out to be a weapons expert and now drives the team around in a T-74. Junpei is the typical muscle-bound guy who has peas for brains. And last but not the least, is the beautiful leader of the elves, Celcia, who helps the humans in finding their way back home. But don't expect her to be another Deedlit (from Record of Lodoss War) just because she strikes serene and demure poses for the camera. I've been deceived by the posters and opening theme -- she has lots of less-than-graceful moments and can be hilariously loud and hot-tempered!
The best thing about this anime is its lightness. One can only wallow in the depressing auras of seriously-themed anime like Neon Genesis Evangelion for so long. With TWHE's uncomplicated and ridiculous plot, it's 100% pure comedy! Although the elf-stripping can get a bit repetitive, each of the victim's reactions are almost always funny. That, plus Junpei and Celcia's antics and constant bickering provide enough entertainment for the viewer.
I find it weird that some people think the art sucks. I think it's quite good, especially for a TV series. The elves are so beautiful! The music is just as good too! To top it off, ADV's English dubbing is excellent. Generally, this series reminds me of Ghost Sweeper Mikami in its simplicity, although GSM uses more of the flat-out perverted language and is a bit better in terms of humour.
TWHE is pretty short, having only 12 volumes. A second series has already been realeased in Japan, although I wonder how much the "elf-stripping" plot can be stretched.
Individual Rating: Art/Animation 7; Story 7; Characters 8; Sounds 7