Home > Anime > Tokyo Magnitude 8.0 Review (80/100 – Very Good)

Tokyo Magnitude 8.0 Review (80/100 – Very Good)

Boy, did Tokyo Magnitude 8.0 (TM8) come out of nowhere and completely surprise me. It is a riveting story about what could possibly happen if Tokyo were to get hit by a devastating earthquake of magnitude 8.0. Mirai, a middle school freshman girl, and her younger brother, Yuuki, go to Tokyo at the start of summer vacation for a robot exhibition. An earthquake of magnitude 8.0 occurs which causes much devastation to Tokyo and the surrounding areas. They meet up with Mari, a motorcycle delivery woman, amidst the turmoil, and they start their journey to go back home.

Story: 10/10

The story is fascinating and fresh. There is a disclaimer at the beginning of each episode that states a large amount of research concerning earthquakes and such were done as the show is striving for realism. The show is fiction, but this sense of realism adds to the emotional story. Further, the flow of the story, for the most part, is excellent and will make viewers want to watch the episodes consecutively.

Animation: 8/10

The character drawings range from “average” at worst to “very good” at best. In some scenes, the characters look lazily drawn, but it gets the point across and is not annoying to look at. The backdrop has much more detail and is often times excellent in quality. The CG scenes are well done too. The difference in quality between the character and setting animations is to increase the overall realism and devastation caused by the earthquake.

Characters: 10/10

The characters are exceptional. Everyone is believable and very likeable. The protagonists grow with the unfolding events and are a main reason why the story is so moving. Further, the supporting cast is also well done. One can connect with any of the side characters and sympathize with their situation. In addition, the voice actors did an excellent job of conveying the tone and emotion to put an genuine spin on their characters (especially Mari and Yuuki’s seiyuus).

Music: 8/10

Kimi No Uta’s (opening) music and lyrics are fitting for the chaotic events and describe the protagonists’ situation well. The ending song, Melody, is very catchy and uplifting. Its “melody” is light and happy which clashes (in a good way) with some of the more serious scenes. The background score, while not exactly memorable by itself, is purposeful and moving.

Enjoyment: 7/10

Why is my gut feeling about this show just slightly above average when all the other qualities are higher? It is because I literally felt like I was punched in my emotional and proverbial gut towards the end of the show. Don’t get me wrong, the ending is far from horrible. It is hard to explain what I’m talking about without spoiling it so let me just simply say that it did its job of evoking my emotions, however I feel that it did too good of a job. We all know too much of a good thing can be bad.  The ending is extremely bittersweet, making me have a love-hate relationship for this series. I am sure other viewers will disagree with my gut feeling. I can see where they are coming from and completely respect that (see my perfect 10/10 score for the story).

Average Series Rating: 8/10 – Very Good

Bottom line: TM8 is a gripping, refreshing, depressing, but extremely entertaining drama. The viewer may want to watch something happier and lighter at the end because it is a real tear jerker. Not exactly my cup of tea (too sad), however I know a special series when I see it.

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