Yuri Anime: Simoun

May 8th, 2007

Only about 6 months after the anime actually ended, I am *finally* getting around to doing an end-of-season review for the series that won my “Best Yuri of 2006” award, Simoun. Don’t want to rush these things, y’know.

I liked nearly everything about Simoun: the characters, the plot, the art, the music (oh god, so good…,) the ending, the epilogue. There was in fact, only one thing I did not like. The character designs…in particular, Neviriru’s design. It really distressed me. Other than that, there was just about nothing I did not like.

In particular I thought episodes 23-end were breathtaking, stunning, and wow. Yun’s choice was really powerful, and the way the story is tied up – loose ends and all – was to me completely satisfactory. In fact, IMHO, the loose ends are what made the anime work.

Let’s talk Yuri for a moment. There *is* a legitimate case for saying that there is no Yuri, as the Sibylla are meant to be understood to *not* be women, but to be maidens, as a kind of pre-pubescent state, despite their age and figure. Nonetheless, for the two girl x girl couples at the end (or three depending on how you see the one pair) I’m calling it Yuri. Because the choices were not made regardless of gender. These choices were made to some degree because of their gender. Being Sibylla made their love possible. And damn, it’s hard to explain what I mean unless you’ve seen the series. lol And I really don’t want to spoil too much. ^_^ Here’s just a small spoiler – Three Yuri, one Yaoi and one Straight couple at final count. lol (And almost everyone likes the boys best.) I liked them all.

But I wonder if it’s not just a series about love in general. Prayer in this series is inextricably linked to love, and love to the intent behind all their actions. In the end, that’s what I think Parietta’s final message is about.

“We were here – and we loved one another…and you.”

Ratings:

Art – other than the chara designs – 9
Story – 9
Characters – 8
Yuri – 7
Service – 6

Overall – 9

I know that I cannot be the only one to have noticed that Neviruru and Aeru did not work as a pair until they switched seme/uke roles, can I? ^_^

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8 Responses

  1. neo_hrtgdv says:

    I loved this anime too ^-^ looking back at that time when we had Simoun and SP almost weekly its kinda hard to make it through this times when we have only “possible” Yuri anime, but anyway.

    Also I don’t see why the argument about “non Yuri” can have any strength besides making up an excuse, they are physically exactly like a girl, voices were cunningly made all women (even for male characters) but its definitely Yuri, I even recall some girls saying “I’ve always been like this, so choosing woman would be natural to me” and the first one we see choosing says “my chest and hip will change, also my voice” ..so all this “but.. they choose gender and are thus not Yuri” is just excuse making not to admit this anime is, indeed, Yuri; or perhaps it is a clever way to make sensible audience relax and say “oh yes, they have no gender, like angels”.

    Just as a final comment, are “seme/uke” used for Yuri!? oO’ I remember being told not to use it for Yuri pairings, actually I didn’t know anything about it until a while ago in a conversation about Yuri “vices” in the topic “Morigana Milk is back” of the Hispanic Yuri Community forum Mistikal Moon (link is at my name.. but it’s in Spanish).

  2. Anonymous says:

    LOL @ seme/uke (auriga/sagitta) role switching comment.

    Thanks for the review.

  3. Yes, seme and uke are terms that can be used for female couples. So are “neko” (femme) and “tachi (butch).

    I feel that seme/uke are not at all the same thing as tachi/neko, although they are used pretty much interchangably. Most butches I know are the uke in the relationship. :-)

  4. Jesse says:

    For once, I’m with Neo. He brought the point across well. I’m frankly surprised at this debate of the Yuri in Simoun. What, has the anti-Yuri mob squad finally got to you Erica? LOL

  5. Me? I thought it was obvious that I am on the pro-Yuri side.

    I simply thought that the issue was worth commenting on, since the issue of choosing gender is arguably the single most important thing in the series. Certainly it is one of the most important choices facing the Sibylla.

    Even some Yuri fans have to note that in order to stay together, teo of the couples simply avoid choosing at all – essentially saying that they’d prefer to remain in an “immature” state. (That’s simplifying things considerably, of course.)

    Nonetheless, I think the choices were made because the fact that as females, and as Sibylla, they could do the one thing that they were best suited to – pray/fly. They chose to do those things together, because they loved one another. It wasn’t the fact that they didn’t want to grow up – it was that they wanted to do what “only they could do.” And to do that, they had to remain Sibylla.

    Anyway, yes, I see them as Yuri couples. :-)

  6. pseudorandom says:

    I can’t say one way or another whether this counts as Yuri — but it definitely is queer, which is good enough for me.

    I love this series, but remain confused about certain aspects of the ending — especially why certain others supported the main couple’s choices.

  7. Tomoyo says:

    I just finished watching this series the other day and I thought it was fantastic. The way the series ended was very satisfying and I’m glad I stuck with Simoun despite the confusing beginning. I’ve got a question about your review though. *Three* Yuri couples in at the final count? I only count two couples… (the blatantly obvious two). Who makes up the third Yuri couple?

  8. Anonymous says:

    man, this anime was amesome, awesome, great story, great characters, and i got so emocional with everyone SPOILER with mamiina’s death..T_T SPOILER END

    awesome again ^^ but i prefer aeru as the seme, no matter her height, she can’t be the uke(that’s what i think)

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