Changing Opening Themes, good or bad?

posted in: Anime Related | 8

changing op themes

In this post I want to discuss the reasons why anime themes get exchanged and if it is always a good idea to change them. For examples we will take a look at some opening themes of still ongoing shows like Golden Time, Tokyo Ravens, Strike the Blood, Magi and Yowamushi Pedal.

By default a two cour anime will probably have two different opening and ending themes.
For the music, professional and popular bands, voice actors or cute songstresses are hired.
They support the anime with providing a song that already exists or make a new one.

guitar

The Opening Theme is the figurehead of an anime, it is the first thing the viewer experiences. Opening and also Ending themes consist of audio and video, animations from the anime or extra made animations that show the viewer what to expect in the first cour in a compressed, artistic format. The music tries to convey the atmosphere from an anime.

As I started to watch animes, I had the opinion that animes with 24 or more episodes, but one opening theme are lazy, especially when the song is not so good, only when there is a very good song, a change is regretable. For the viewer a changing Opening makes an anime fresher with new animations and music. At best the new theme is as good as the first one or even better.

guitar2

Financial aspects play an important role in this regard, both music labels and anime studios make extra money with CD sales and will gain attention with the music played in an anime.

An anime profits from a popular band and a band profits from being part in an anime adaption since their songs reach the ears of the anime audience. Without anime I would have missed a number of great japanese artists. From electronic beats to romantic ballads, there is a wide range of genre’s that are used in anime, Higashi no Eden even had a western song.

Now lets listen to a few Songs of several 20 + episode animes and compare them.

Golden Time

 

 “Golden Time” by Yui Horie

The sweet and clear voice of Yui Horie make this a really romantic happy and enjoyable song.
The cozy and artistic animations focuses on the pretty main heroine in many cute scenes.

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QqU_JPwig_4

 

“The♡World’s♡End” by Yui Horie

Yui Horie performs a more dreamy song that gives off a distant, nearly lonely feeling, the noise over her singing is a bit distracting from her angelic voice, but it shows the personal conflitcs of the main heroine very well. A good opening change with a different mood.

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aN-nTIXLwEQ

 

Tokyo Ravens

 

“X-encounter” by Maon Kurosaki

Not a bad song for this one, dynamic song and also good animations.

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BVTwa-RDOKM
 

“~Outgrow~” by Gero

Well, that throws the first one out of the water, a very powerful song till the end, that’s the kind of song I prefer personally, the animations are really cool.

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pje4GXgNNec
 

 Strike the Blood

 

“Strike the Blood” by Kishida Kyoudan & The Akeboshi Rockets

A great opening with it’s rough, energetic speed and the strong female voice, the song reminds me of Highschool of the dead, it is a bit similar and very fitting for an action orientated, shounen anime. It’s one of the songs where I set the volume to maximum, I love songs that make me feel like grabbing a guitar and jumping around like a wild monkey.

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qAFSVQkavKw
 

“Fight 4 Real” by ALTIMA

That song really is weird choice, that’s a case of bad change, the song doesn’t want to fit.
I’d rather listened to the old one for another dozen of episodes, at least the darker scenes in the animation have a good atmosphereThe fitting for the show.

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4l6Qar6gXmw
 

Magi

 

“ANNIVERSARY” by SID

Magi always has nice themes, not something I would get as CD but they are good. A soft male voice is good for a shounen show that has friendship, trust and adventures as main topic.

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxxznc1yGOI
 

“Hikari (光-HIKARI-)” by ViViD

I would say that is as good as the previous one, the animations are a bit more interesting, I love the part at 1:19.

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B3q8Yzp6eGU
 

 Yowamushi Pedal

 

“Reclimb (リクライム)” by ROOKiEZ is PUNK’D

ROOKiEZ is PUNK’D is a great band and I like this song a lot, it fits very well to the beginning of the anime, where the shy Otaku Onoda lost his club, but found himself a decent hobby where he can grow both mentally and physically, make friends and challenges himself.
httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jyk3dM6qUhU
 

“Yowamushi na Honoo (弱虫な炎)” by Dirty Old Men

I already thought that “Reclimb” was the perfect song for this show, but Dirty Old Men pumped their song with so much power and passion that it is a really great song for this bicycle sport anime . I ordered the single and an album of the band, sorry I can’t find the video in a decent quality.

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Wl8XaqEoCg

 

What do you think about the changing of Opening Themes?

Was there a time when you were really dissapointed or relieved by such a change?
Please tell me in the comments.

8 Responses

  1. Tier

    I’m kinda apathetic to having two OP/EDs for the first half and second half of a 24 (or so) episode show; mainly I’m happy if I like the songs. Some of the shows I watched back when I got into anime in the early 2000s used just one OP/ED song each despite running for 24+ episodes, like Noir’s “Copperia no Hitsugi” and “Kirei na Kanjou” and Last Exile’s “Cloud Age Symphony” and “Over the Sky”, and I count those as among my favorite anime songs. Then again, Guilty Crown had a pretty terrible first intro song, and I was glad that they changed it to a more up-tempo rock song for the second half of the show (too bad the show was still awful). For a show that is reputed to have a good soundtrack, I can’t remember either of its ED songs. I really liked all of the songs for Seikon no Qwaser’s first season but I suppose I do like the second OP and second ED theme better than the first set of songs – however, somebody on Youtube pointed out that the second OP’s background chanting sounds kinda like, “Panties! We love panties! We love panties! Enough panties!” and now every time I listen to the song, I always listen for that.

    • wieselhead

      Interesting that you mentioned “Copperia no Hitsugi” it’s made by Ali Project, their songs always appear very “avantgarde” compared to everything thing else, I dislike this style but I at least like this song and “Seishoujo Ryouiki” from the second rozen maiden season. Ah that brings back memories, seems like many people started with the same “Kirei Na Kanjou” is a great song by Akino Arai, she also made fantastic song for Zegapain It had more of this calm and atmospheric songs, this here is also good.

      Oh Last Exile, the opening always made me feel totally strange, I never got used to it, but OI really liked “Over the Sky”. My all time favorite opening is quite old school, “Zankoku Na Tenshi” from Neon Genesis Evangelion.
      I love it as much as the show, my first real anime ^^

      Haha GC had nice music at least, I liked the first song, it had a nice romantic lyrics, but yeah listening to a song you dislike over and over is terrible , so a change can ease your pain 😀
      Hey this Seikon no Qwaser OP is pretty, good great refrain. I often find myself liking opening songs from heavy fanservice shows, Ikki Tousen for example or in Maken Ki’s first season. Im not that familiar with Saikon,
      I was a bit creeped out by the , kinky, sadistic erotic tendencies, so I never finished it. Fuck they really sing we love panties woooooooot!? XD

      thx for the entertaining comment

  2. Kai

    I normally skip most OPs and EDs, unless they are very good and is very fun to watch, lol. For example, one of my favorite EDs of all time – the second ending of Yakitate Japan, the music’s not just good, but the OP’s fun to watch, with the manager dancing to disco.

    Other than those very few favorites though, yea, I mostly skip D:

    • wieselhead

      Ah I see, I guess I would miss something when I skip the music regularly, for me it’s part of the experience.
      lol this is an unique song XD

  3. Miette-chan

    I think I find shows getting more than one opening rare nowadays, I guess since they are mostly 12-13 episode seasons. I always like more openings, specially if I like the artist that performs. I also really like it when the opening changes in conjunction with the narrative of the show. Sometimes though, it feels like they change for the sake of changing… like in Gundam Seed Destiny that fourth opening, compared to the others by TM Revolution and High and Mighty Color seemed to come out of nowhere.

    • wieselhead

      Yes, they rarely change it in these short shows, maybe because of a lower budget.
      It is important that the music and video is somewhat related to the content of the show.
      In Eureka Seven, a 50 episode anime, they had 4 Openings and Endings, I loved it and how they’ve portrayed the different stages of the story.
      I haven’t watched Seed Destiny so far, maybe it will be something for me to watch next.
      I don’t mind the changes, as long as the songs aren’t annoying as hell XD

  4. Aya

    Personally I only listen to them for 3-5 episodes after that I just skip to main part to the anime no matter how good they are, till they change it lol some of them better than the previous one some are not but it’s nice to see change it’s boring listen the same opening and the same song every episodes :p at least they switch after 12-13 episodes mostly

    • wieselhead

      So you save some minutes :p I only try to skip the annoying songs, there are a few exceptional good songs from time to time, I don’t want to skip, even afteer x episodes.
      When I’m going to watch more episodes of one show, I will probably want to skip the songs as well. A new song keeps the show fresh I assume.

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