On the face of it, Claymore is simply another anime series about the hunting and slaying of nasty monsters. It is well directed with fast moving action, some excellent animation, a straightforward plot, good screenplay and some interesting characters - and on this level it succeeds quite well. However, look a little more carefully, and one finds that it also possesses some quite satisfying depths in certain areas.
The artwork is unusual and extremely effective, employing bold drawing of the characters, often contrasted with pale colours occasionally fading almost into black and white, and incorporating monochrome tints and pale washes. The colours are well chosen, however, and this approach makes it even more striking when vivid colours are suddenly introduced for certain scenes. The lighting is also notable, often dramatic and sometimes spectacular.
Superficially the plot premise is fundamentally simple and often violent, as vicious, evil monsters are slain by claymore wielding heroines, but the character development is quite strong - many of the main characters displaying unexpected complexity - and ethical issues, as is frequently the case with anime, are not far beneath the surface. In fact, much of the series' plot and to a certain extent the characterization, revolves around the concept that power wielded in the name of Good can be corrupted into Evil if it becomes too great. That the characters in the story are morally aware is demonstrated by remarks such as Jean's : "I have no intention of compromising my honour just to live a long life".
Qualities like these manage to lift this Anime above the average, and, in my opinion, will further enhance the reputation of those brilliant women at Clamp, and all those connected with turning the manga into anime.
My initial four stars becomes five because I like the artwork so much, but even if the art doesn't work so well for you this is still an above average series.