The Mystic Archives of Dantalian

Type: The Adventures of Library Girl and Her Trusty Companion


Synopsis: For years, Huey Disward thought his grandfather was a complete recluse who obsessed over books for the majority of his adult life. This turned out to be untrue. He actually obsessed over a young girl. That’s…better? Anyway, it turns out the girl is a magical library, a glorified Kindle really, and Huey agrees to help her collect forbidden books that are supposed to be secret, even though everyone in Europe seems to have one.

Pros: Right off the bat I have to point on The Mystic Archives of Dantalian’s theme song. It’s beautiful and perfectly set the tone for a post-WW1 show. That’s what I really loved about the show. It had the premise of magic spell books set in the backdrop of 1920’s Europe. There’s something classically romantic about that, and the show in general.  Most episodes are stand alone cases, where Huey and Dalian investigate a new rumored book, most of which end in tragedy. I loved this type of storytelling, because it had adventure, mystery, drama, and humor. I think this is the fist time an anime has made me feel like I was watching something based on a book. That’s a good feeling.

Cons: Whenever Huey and Dalian have to fight an evil book’s spell, they do this ritual where Huey physically extracts a book from Dalian and recites some nonsense incantation. That’s cool, but the anime used the same animation every this happened, which was a problem because  a lot of the episodes ended like that. There was also this mystery girl with silver hair that Huey seems to know, but it’s never really explained. The last episode implied that she was Pandora, but I would have liked an actual name rather than an indirect allusion. I also had a problem with the use of photorealistic backgrounds, but you get use to them.

Watch it!?: Like a good book, I couldn’t pull away. (4/5)

MVP: Huey Disward



Best Episode: Ep. 4 “Book of Soul Exchange” (Have you ever watched Misery?)

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