I watched and finished Level E in the span of a few days. Being an excellent show, I found two interesting things about it:
First, it completely went under my radar. Level E had a very unassuming writeup in those numerous season preview charts, and the name of David Production immediately brought up some raised eyebrows. I had had experience with them through Ristorante Paradiso (decent show with adult characters and issues), and I found them pretty good, if a bit incessant with the CG use.
I just didn’t find it promising to pick up.
However, fans seemed to like it, and a close friend was completely loving it. Since I was following a handful of shows last season, I just resolved to marathon the whole thing when it finished.
And I did. Shit, what was wrong with me? There’s really nothing special about Level E production-wise, but it looked reasonably well and had no noticeable drops in quality. The writing and characters, however, were superb. It was just thirteen episodes worth of genuinely funny story arcs.
In this expectation-laden environment we anime fans thrive in, that was such a surprise, wasn’t it?
Second, I was shocked to learn that the Level E anime is an adaptation of a manga that was serialized from 1995 to 1997. I mean, why just now? And it wasn’t even a particularly well-known work!
(As an aside, I tried reading the manga and the art is nothing like the anime’s. David Production updated the character designs quite neatly.)
I’m very curious as to how the anime happened, but that doesn’t change how much fun I had with the show. To me, Level E is a bastion of hope for all those wonderful works that still haven’t gotten the anime treatment. Because a good manga is a good manga any time of the day.