Shinigami No Ballad is a 6 episode series consisting of 6 short stories (each story 1 episode long). The main premise of the story is centred around a Shinigami named Momo and the people she deals with. (By the way, A Shinigami is a ‘gatekeeper” to the afterlife’) While there were great moments in the individual stories, I found the series as a whole to be rather lacking. Although all of the story premises we’re great, the last 3 episodes suffered from a bad case of “cheesey storytelling”.
The first 3 episodes we’re brilliant. The stories we’re all done very well with a great “mystery” aspect to them. Granted, its difficult to pull of an effect story in 20 minutes, but from the first moments, these episodes we’re quite enthralling. (4.5/5) Now, where this series suffers (and gets a much lower score) is in the last 3 episodes. As stated above they suffered from a case of “cheesyness” and seemed rather predictable and bland. If they had maintained the same momentum as they had with the three preceding episodes, the series would have been MUCH better off.
Not good. It honestly felt as though it could have been the exact same character playing in each episode. There were no “defining characteristics” that made individuals stand out from episode to episode. Nothing memorable or exciting in the character department.
The music and sounds were very fitting and well executed most of the time.
There we a few moments when the style seemed out of place with the atmosphere, but by-and-large, a job well done. The musical style is your typical animé-esque type background music. A helpful bout of strings, piano, and electronic keyboard create a classic animé atmosphere. The sound effects were very standard and casual, but well placed and executed.
It would be silly to expect complex animation or art style in an animé as simple as this one. Though the art wasn’t exceptional, it did fit the style of the story perfectly and had a rather unique feel to it. Job well done.
In the end, Shinigami No Ballad was a rather decent animé. The first half of the series excelled with excellent plots and storytelling. I just wish they had stuck with it for the last half as well. Although not extraordinary, the animé as a whole was an enjoyable watch and certainly not a waste of time.
Recommended to anyone who wants to see a series that light-heartedly experiments with the idea of death and reflection on ones own life.