GATE: Jieitai Kanochi nite, Kaku Tatakaeri (Gate: Thus the JSDF Fought There!) Review

 

Gate was a show that I totally ignored when it first came out because of one simple, but very stupid and very judgmental reason: There’s one guy and a bunch of girls in the poster…

gate-jieitai-kanochi-nite-kaku-tatakaeri

Yes, yes I know. Never judge a book by it’s cover, don’t be a dick and always learn to look both ways before crossing the road. But in my defense other shows that have the same male to female ratio in their cover tend to… you know? Not be good.

 

 

So I figured why waste my time with Gate? Surely it was going to be yet another moe moe ecchi harem type show like those other time wast-, err… I mean those other shows that were made to sell body pillows and figmas.

But something happened…

I finished watching Man in The High Castle (great show by the way) and was now out of shows to watch, anime or otherwise. And seeing as Gate is going to have a second season this week, I figured “why not? If it sucks at least I could review it and warn others about it.”

Thankfully it didn’t suck. Now it’s definitely not a MUST WATCH type show, at least for me, but it was definitely worthwhile and I’m actually interested in seeing the second season. In fact, even though I wasn’t too enthralled with the show, others might actually love it.

 

PLOT

NoPlotRory

Nothing to see here.

 

STORY

The story of Gate is simple. A portal opens up in the middle of a Japanese city and out from it comes a bunch of fantasy monsters and men in knightly armor. They kill people, police show up, the fantasy invaders get killed and the government sends the Jieitai (Japan’s Self-Defense Force) through the portal into a world simply known as the “Special Region”. While on the other side, the Jieitai is to set up a base of operations, investigate the Special Region and make contact with the local populace.

Screen Shot 2016-01-07 at 3.44.31 PM

What follows is one big circle jerk, stroking the ego of Japa-er, I mean what follows is an entertaining show about Japan’s finest being heroes and doing a lot of good and ass kicking. In all seriousness I didn’t actually mind the show’s patriotism. I found it endearing. And I thought that it was nice to see America as a villainous force for once, because though there’s fantasy monsters and what not to worry about, the show doesn’t forget the possible political maelstrom that would stir at the sudden discovery of a new world with yet to be discovered (and claimed) resources and powers. My only problem with that is that all the non-Japanese countries (America, China and Russia) are portrayed as being greedy villains with little to no depth… which just makes the patriotism a tad bit disturbing. Similar to how brown people tend are typically made into evil sand devils lacking in personality in some American media.

The show displays an attempt at fleshing out the kingdoms of the Special Region, so why not make non-Japanese countries just as complex? It’s almost as bad as a Transformers movie in that part (and only in that part, because the show’s actually pretty good).

Screen Shot 2016-01-07 at 3.44.06 PM

Ugh… Greedy Americans.

But I guess that’s not really the focus of the show. The focus is, after all, the Special Region, its people and how they interact with the Jieitai; which we see through the eyes of Gate’s protagonist: Youji Itami.

 

Characters

Screen Shot 2016-01-07 at 3.36.58 PM

Youji Itami. Protagonist and 33 year old otaku. Loser. But cool loser.

When we first meet Youji he’s portrayed as being an otaku that prioritizes his nerdy hobbies over work and adult responsibilities, but as soon as the action kicks in we see our 33-year-old protagonist acting in a very non-otaku like manner. He’s putting himself in danger to save people, he’s giving orders to police officers and he’s fighting against the fantasy invaders. Right now I don’t really have any complaints about this sequence since the show does explain why he’s very skilled and can just give orders around like that later on. But watching it at first I was a little bothered by how the show doesn’t tell us more about his character. And I know, I know, show don’t tell. But it did feel like the show was forgetting to tell me stuff about Youji rather than purposefully keeping secrets from me. A minor complaint, but it was there and it probably won’t bother most other people, because Youji Itami is a likable dude anyway.

Screen Shot 2016-01-07 at 3.37.57 PM

Youji goes Solid Snake on this guy.

Besides him there’s the other Jieitai members that become a part of his squad. We don’t really get to know all of them all too well, but the show does make an effort in providing at least half of them personalities. Outside of Youji’s squad there were a handful of other Japanese characters (Jieitai, government official and civilian) that either help to progress the plot along and flesh out characters without becoming plot devices with absolutely zero personality. And that’s part of what I appreciate about Gate, minor side characters might have been minor, but at least they weren’t completely boring and lacking of personality. For the most part at least. Were they good and depthful characters? Naw.  Not really. But they didn’t really take up too much of our time so it’s okay.

Screen Shot 2016-01-07 at 3.44.21 PM

Kawaii-chan. She has a real name, but I don’t remember it.

The characters that did get a lot of screen time besides Youji were the three main ladies on the poster (plus Princess Pina Colada… it’s okay to laugh). The three main girls of Gate are Tuka, Lelei and Rory. Tuka is an elf girl whose village was razed by a fire dragon, she’s suffering from PTSD because her father was killed. Lelei is a mage in training and is eager to learn about the world beyond the gate and about Japan. Rory, despite looking like the youngest of the three, is actually a 900 year old demigod who serves as a priestess of sorts for the God of death, or war… I don’t actually remember but when people die around her, their souls pass through her body and she gets very aroused… which leads to a number of scenes teeming with sexual tension…  Yeah.

gate-0120-19-37.jpg

I really want to say that there’s more to these girl’s characters other than being your typical harem ladies, but though they do have pretty entertaining personalities they just don’t have anything else going for them. Tuka doesn’t do much except for be an elf. Lelei serves as a translator between the Jieitai and the people of the Special Region but other than that she and Tuka don’t really do much except use a few helpful spells, but even that felt lacking. Rory had some pretty cool moments but other than her cool fights and sexual tension with Youji there’s not a lot to her character. But if you’re a fan of cool fight scenes you might like her and you might even think that she’s a great character… You might not notice how uninteresting she really is, but your brain will.

 

And as funny as her name is, I actually find Princess Pina’s character to be the best out of all the female ones because she’s actually a character with fears and goals. Tuka’s suffering from PTSD sure, and that’s probably going to play in later on in the series but as of right now it’s just there to be there. She, and the other two girls, just don’t have any real goals other than to be cute and try to get in bed with Youji Itami.

image_pina_colada

Princess Pina Colada.

Pina has real goals. She wants peace between her people and the Jieitai. She’s the daughter of the emperor but born to a concubine and has plenty to prove to the world and herself. Really, she has the most depth out of every character except for Youji and I’m glad that she didn’t ended up as just another loli harem character because you know that she could have easily been one. And if she does end up being infatuated with Youji, I wouldn’t mind it so long as she doesn’t lose her personality.

Basically what I’m complaining about here is that I wanted more from the three girls, not just screen-time but also something from them that’ll actually draw me in and make me care about them. Only reason I care about Tuka is because she’s worried about her dad, but even then that still felt like it was lacking. I want more damn it!

 

Oh well, at least the show does have plenty of epic moments like this one:

 

 

VERDICT

I’m sure, or at least I’m hoping, that the second season is going to be better. I still want the action and I still want to see more conflict between the Jieitai/Japan, the kingdoms of the Special Region and the world governments. But most of all I’m hoping that the next season gives us some interesting character moments because that could have really improved this show a lot. Not saying that it’s bad because I am going to recommend it to people.

For which people? Well, I think this is a pretty good anime for the typical anime fan who likes good action, decent story and cute ladies. And if you like fantasy and military stuff then this is definitely a show for you. Obviously a purely shoujo anime type then this show might not be for you. And if you’re looking for overt sexual stuff, go watch porn instead you fuck. The show might be a harem with a good amount of sexual overtones and tension, but it doesn’t ever go To-Love Ru levels of lewdness.

Thank God.

I would be disappointed if the next season didn’t have more Youji and Pina though.

YoujixPina

… I’m stupid.

Beautiful Bones: Sakurako’s Investigation Episodes 1-3 Review

Let’s Solve The Mystery!


Sakurako-San

I’m just going to start things up by talking about how much I adore Sakurako-san. She’s cold and seemingly uncaring but very eccentric. She has a fascination for the dead and anatomy, namely skeletons of both animals and humans—giving her a vault of knowledge that would ultimately help her solve and figure out whatever death related mystery presents itself to her. She’s a great detective, but like Sherlock Holmes before her, she seems to lack a bit of humanity, or at least she’s got it all buried way deep down her heart.

Sakurako-san <3

Sakurako-san ❤

Also, I have a crush on her…


Other Characters Are Kind of Meh

Of course, like in any detective story there’s bound to be a Watson. The sidekick who acts as the audiences’ extension to the story—the eyes that we see the world through. In Sakurako-san the Watson character is Boy A, or Shoutaro, but I prefer to call him Boy A primarily because he’s very bland and boring.

Hands of Sakurako-san punk!

Hands of Sakurako-san punk!

I have no doubt that he’ll play a pivotal later on in the series, but he’s kind of a spazz and I don’t like him. His design’s kind of lame, his personality is lame (if he even has one) and did I forget to mention that he’s lame?

There are other characters as well, people related to the mysteries, the police, Boy A’s high school friends and an old lady that acts as Sakurako-san’s maid. There’s not much to say about these other characters right now. There have been mentions of possible big players in the story, but right now the show’s focused on Sakurako-san and Boy A. And the fact that the focus is partially on Boy-A, the show gets kind of boring at times.

I forgot her name, but she's Boy A's classmate.

I forgot her name, but she’s Boy A’s classmate.


Clunky Writing

With deaths comes drama and action. Episode 2 and 3 had a tense action scene and tearjerker moment respectively. The action scene in episode 2 wasn’t anything special, but it did feel extremely clunky, as did the tearjerker moment in 3… Mind you I call it a tearjerker moment because it was supposed to be sad, but in the end, it ultimately failed to make me feel sad. Or feel anything.

Screen Shot 2015-10-28 at 2.54.13 PM

Sakurako-san tries to save a baby.

For me, Sakurako-san desperately trying to save and help the two kid characters was enough drama. There was no need for her to mistake Boy A for her brother. Doing so just felt forced.

That right there was enough drama and information.

That right there was enough drama and information.

And I get that they wanted to set up Sakurako-san having a dead brother, but I already figured or at least speculated that when seeing her be personally invested in the case.


Mysterious Mysteries

I do have to give the writer props for their convincing portrayal of forensics. However, while I enjoy watching Sakurako-san figure out what happened in the crime scene, I don’t like the fact that there’s not a whole lot of conflict going on in the mysteries for episode 1 and 3.

In episode 1 the mystery was solved mostly out of curiosity of the other characters and not because they were trying to convict a killer.

Solving an accident isn't that exciting.

Solving an accident isn’t that exciting.

In episode 3 the mystery was solved to resolve conflict within a character that I didn’t care much about. It wasn’t as bad as the first episode’s mystery, but it did feel weak, weaker in comparison to episode 2’s.


Verdict

So while I didn’t quite enjoy Sakurako-san as much as I had hope, I’m still going to keep watching it and I will be reviewing the 4th episode real soon. Probably by tonight assuming that it’s already out by then.

  • PROS
    • Sakurako-san is awesome.
    • Sakurako-san solving mysteries.
  • CONS
    • Boy A is lame.
    • Clumsy writing.
    • Lack of motivation.
Sakurako-san is mine!

Sakurako-san is mine!

One Punch Man Episode 4 Review

“What an innocent smile!”

The Humor In Saitama

As a joke, Saitama’s overwhelming strength is kind of wearing down on me already. At first I snickered out loud when I saw him destroy the giant dude from the first episode with ease, but by episode four the joke’s starting to feel tiresome. There was that one bit where Saitama punched Sonic’s crotch, which I thought was funny. And I’m not going to lie, I like that a lot primarily because someone got punched in the balls and I often have the mind of a 12-year-old boy.

LMAO.

LMAO.

However, and I can’t believe that I’m just noticing this now, the show’s humor really comes more from Saitama’s aloofness. Whether it’s him forgetting that there’s a sale in the supermarket or whether it’s him lamenting his lack of fame, Saitama and his general goofiness is definitely my main reason for watching the show.


The Speed O’ Sound Sonic Or Whatever

Speaking of humor, I thought the villain of the week—Sonic, not the Paradisers was hilarious. Though I do think that the Paradisers had their moments of hilarity as well. Sonic just really took the cake, primarily because of his innocent smile. It’s Saitama being aloof, but I can’t wait to see more of this guy and witness as his rivalry with Saitama escalates… if it even does.

Sonic's innocent smile.

Sonic’s innocent smile.


Plot Progression

Two more things about this episode.

One, we saw some scenes with Genos and the scientist that gave him his robotic body, as well as get some foreshadowing of Genos’ upgrades.

Mushroom Hakase

Mushroom Hakase

Number two, but not really number two, we saw some scenes with some goons that killed the Paradiser leader, talking about stolen equipment. I don’t actually consider this as plot progression since I have a feeling that whoever the next group of villain’s going to be they’re just going to be throw away. Or not, not sure yet.

I wonder if Saitama's also going to one punch these two goons.

I wonder if Saitama’s also going to one punch these two goons.

But real number two in terms of plot progression—Saitama signing up for the hero’s guild. It’s a small tidbit of the episode, but it does set up something more interesting than another group of useless villains.

#Saitamaproblems

#Saitamaproblems


Stray Observation

One more thing. At the very end of the episode we see Saitama lamenting the fact that if he hadn’t trained as much as he did, he would have become one of the Paradisers—a lazy NEET. It was a short bit, but an interesting character moment.

Thank God he got better.

Thank God he got better.


Verdict

Overall it was a great episode filled with many laughs. The humor did wane on me, but at least now I have something more interesting to look forward to. THE HERO’S GUILD!

Saitama fan girls... Imaginary fan girls.

Saitama fan girls… Imaginary fan girls.

One Punch Man Episode 1-2 Review

2015’s Attack on Titan? Probably.


The Former Half of Episode One Was Meh

Relax... I didn't hate it.

Relax… I didn’t hate it.

Maybe it was just me, but I didn’t really enjoy the first half of episode one. It had some nice chuckle-worthy moments but it was a little lackluster in terms of anything engaging. I don’t know, I just didn’t like the whole lobster guy bit.

However, after the first commercial break the show got awesome.


Issues With Strength

I hate overpowered characters. I find them boring and pointless. There’s nothing thrilling, nothing exciting or engaging about them since there’s no tension with powerful characters. Don’t get me wrong; it can be fun to watch a character kick ass and demolish his/her opponents a few times, but at some point it’ll get boring since you know that they’re just going to win anyway.

Pay it or else.

Pay it or else.

The best kinds of characters are the ones who have the odds stacked against them. I just find it more interesting when a character has to figure out how to win rather than just brute force their way to victory. But One Punch Man’s Saitama is just pure glory—he’s an overpowered character, but the fact that it’s played for laughs more than it’s played for the Rule of Cool makes him that much more enjoyable.

Plenty of Saitama’s enemies and the other characters have convoluted backstories, but One Punch Man’s backstory is simple—he wanted to be a hero because he was bored with life and so he trained for three years straight, lost all his hair and became super powerful.

ONE PUNCH... man... that's all he needs.

ONE PUNCH… man… that’s all he needs.

That’s it.

And really that’s all you need, because it’s enough to make his internal struggles interesting. Due to Saitama’s relentless training, he became a boring and overpowered hero—all his enemies are weaker in comparison and can be destroyed in one hit, making being a hero boring for him. It feels like a bit of meta-anime commentary and I like that. Because really… It is kind of boring even for viewers to watch a character that doesn’t struggle.

Hilarious

He's fast!

He’s fast!

As mentioned earlier Saitama’s overwhelming strength is played for laughs, but the show doesn’t just rely on that one joke (at least right now it doesn’t). There are plenty of other jokes and I found it all to be rather amusing—from the kid with the weird chin, Saitama not caring about other people’s backstory and him trying to kill a mosquito (and failing), there’s plenty of laughs to be had with this.

I love this guy.

I love this guy.

Sweet Animation

Other than the good laughs and interesting concept, One Punch Man’s animation is pretty sweet. Like seriously, the action and fight scenes are pretty awesome and badass. If you don’t care about laughs or meta-commentary, check this show out even just for the kickassery.


Verdict

Definitely going to be in my “To-Watch-List”. If you can only watch one anime this season, I recommend that you go watch this one.

9.5/10 – Excellent

  • Pros
    • Hilarious
    • Badass Animation
    • Meta-Commentary
  • Cons
    • Lackluster first half of episode one.
Our hero.

Our hero.

Aoharu x Kikanjuu (Aoharu x Machinegun) Episode 9 Review

Hotaru’s So Super Cool

PROS

  • The 2nd to 3rd Act Transition.

In almost every narrative (of any genre or medium), there’s a point in the story where the protagonist(s) would encounter some great force that would bring them to their knees and wallowing in despair. It’s the turning point in the story where we see our protagonist at their lowest and most vulnerable. And we always expect them to come out of this point in the story having learned their lesson and ready to face the villain a second time.

Using the Avengers as a quick reference, this is the scene in the movie where all hope seems to have been lost and the team torn apart—so after Loki’s little game of mayhem in the Helicarrier and during the part where Cap and Tony look a bit distraught and hopeless by their loss.

In a different show these would have been tentacles.

In a different show these would have been tentacles.

The very beginning of this episode showed us that Hotaru was greatly distraught by what’s happened in TGC. Her will has been shaken and she blames herself for their loss. But we expect her to get out of her stupor, if not this episode then maybe on the next one.

Hotaru don't!

Hotaru don’t!

This episode could have just depicted all three members of Toy Gun Gun dealing with defeat in their own separate ways without having any kind of resolution and I would have been fine with that. But instead the episode focused on Hotaru, which again I don’t mind. The episode revolved around her and her friend Kanae, who, despite being against Hotaru being a tomboy who enjoys survival games, decided to pick her friend back up and motivate her to stay true to herself.

I liked Kanae—we don’t know much about her, but we know enough. She’s Hotaru’s girly friend and that’s all we need to know about her character really. I liked both of their talks to each other and I buy Hotaru’s heel-turn back to being her old cool self again.

However… Even though I buy Hotaru’s heel-turn, the way Kanae decided to go about it (the 50-meter dash race bit) did feel a little hokey to me. Not that hokiness and cheesiness are alien to this show. But still, I couldn’t help but think that maybe they could have done something better.

Eh...

Eh…

  • Kanae Yajima

Side-Note: Everyone should just go gay in this show. Matsuoka should just go for Yukimura, Midori should have both Fujimoto and Ichi and Hotaru should just have Kanae. GAYNESS FOR EVERYONE!

I ship this.

I ship this.

  • Everyone Else Not Hotaru

Now speaking of those other characters, all their bits in this episode was very funny and amusing…

I want this manga.

I want this manga.

CONS

  • Pointless Scenes

… But ultimately pointless. I was fine with the length of Yukimura’s scene as the episode did establish a Hotaru focus early on, but I couldn’t help but think of how pointless the scenes with team Hoshishiro was. It was funny and amusing, but what was the point?

FANSERVICE!

FANSERVICE!

Now not every scene has to be riveting or even have a point, but the scenes with them just felt a bit too long for me—especially since we barely got any Matsuoka in this episode. And that’s probably why I’m peeved that there was so much more focus on Hoshishiro over him.

VERDICT

It wasn’t a bad episode by any means, but I didn’t like the lack of Yukimura and Matsuoka in it. The Hoshishiro scenes were funny and I like the Hotaru x Kanae speeches (but not the running thing too much). Still, I’m eager to see what happens next after all this.

Score: 7.5/10

  • PROS
    • Hotaru’s transition from depression to cool.
    • Kanae Yajima
    • Some funny scenes.
  • CONS
    • Racing bit.
    • Lack of Matsuoka and Yukimura.
Fujimon... You need help.

Fujimon… You need help.

Aoharu x Kikanjuu (Aoharu x Machinegun) Episode 8 Review

I WILL CONDEMN YOU!

PROS

  • Midori-Sensei (again!)

A well-written and sympathetic villain is often to be desired in a story to create greater tension and drama, but ultimately the villain needs to serve one crucial goal in the story, and that’s to be an obstacle for the protagonist(s) to overcome. Sometimes you don’t need a villain to be super fleshed out or even sympathetic to be a good character. Sometimes all you need is someone who seems impossible to overcome and someone that the viewers, readers or gamers to hate.

Midori-sensei: Sadist and overall jackass.

Midori-sensei: Sadist and overall jackass.

Midori-sensei has always had a very ominous air about him, but on episode 8 of Aoharu x Kikanjuu we see just why Matsuoka and Yukimura fears him so much. He’s a manipulative sadist who enjoys inflicting physical and emotional pain onto others—(not to mention a really skilled player in the survival games). And even though that’s all there is to him, that’s perfectly fine because it works. The past few episodes has done a great job of making all members of TGG to be very likeable and enjoyable to watch, and watching him torment Matsuoka and Yukimura is kind of hard to watch because we understand how much they hate this guy and how much pain he’s caused both of them in the past.

We want them to win because we like Matsuoka and Yukimura and when they lose to the doctor it’s kind of sad.

  • Hotaru Tachibana Versus Nagamasa Midori
PEW! PEW!

PEW! PEW!

After watching the fight between Hotaru and Fujimoto, I expected the fight between Hotaru and Midori-sensei to be as intense or better. And though I’m not sure if I’d say this battle was better, I still enjoyed it a lot. It showed that Hotaru can go toe to toe with Midori and it showed (though we’ve already seen it multiple times) just how much Hotaru cares about Matsuoka and Yukimura, but it also showed that she’s still very much open to being exploited and tormented by the sadistic doctor. He knows that she’s a girl and he knows that if Matsuoka and Yukimura finds out they might kick him out of the group and he uses this knowledge to his advantage—and uses it in a cheap and very underhanded way, as expected from Midori’s character.

It caught her off guard. Hotaru got sniped by Ichi. Midori’s team won. It’s a bit of a downer ending yes, but it’s that point in the story where the characters encounter some sort of dark period in their life that they need to overcome in order to move on and be better people. I’m not sure how each member of Toy Gun Gun’s going to come out of defeat, but it’s clear that every one of them has issues that they need to let go if they want to win against Hoshishiro.

JUSTICE!

JUSTICE!

  • Matsuoka’s Past With Midori

Minus the previous female member of TGG being tortured, we learn in this episode that Matsuoka and Midori were once really good friends—which I thought was a great addition for Yaoi fans out there. But I also thought that this added more to both of their characters as well as Yukimura’s. Minus the torment done to them in the past, now there’s a backstabbing/betrayal element to it that makes things between Toy Gun-Gun and Hoshishiro even tense!

That's adorable.

That’s adorable.

CONS

  • Time

The one complaint I have for this episode is that there were some lulls in it for me. I’m thinking mostly back to when Midori was torturing Matsuoka and Yukimura. I know that I praised the doctor for his sadistic ways and effectiveness as a villain and I’m not complaining about this because I felt bad for our protagonists and couldn’t stand to watch them be tormented. No, I’m complaining about this because I got bored watching it. The scene felt like it went too long for me to the point of boredom. It did what it had to for the story fairly quickly, but I guess they just felt the need to show more of it and frankly it didn’t work. I’m not saying that they should have just made the fight between Hotaru and Midori longer instead, no, I believe that most of the time less is better. Too much of a good thing can be sickening or, in this case boring. Maybe they should have made the fight between Matsuoka and Midori last a little bit longer instead, mostly just for pacing really. Still, the episode was still all pretty good and enjoyable as a whole.

There should have probably been more Yukimura or Matsuoka fighting against Midori.

There should have probably been more Yukimura or Matsuoka fighting against Midori.

VERDICT

It was a good episode overall. Probably not as enjoyable as the previous one, but I still liked it a lot and even with the lull in the former half of the episode I still had fun. This was more of a character centric episode, but the pacing and timing wasn’t handled too effectively. Either make the Matsuoka fight longer or maybe delve deeper into the flashback stuff.

Score: 8.5/10 Great!

  • PROS
    • Midori-sensei as a bad guy.
    • Hotaru versus Midori
    • More Midori stuff from the past.
  • CONS
    • Lulls in the first half.
Don't worry Hotaru, you'll get him next time!

Don’t worry Hotaru, you’ll get him next time!

Rokka no Yuusha (Rokka: Brave of the Six Flowers) Episode 7 Review

Flashbacks Can Be Really Sloppy!

PROS

  • The Adlet and Fremy scenes
Adlet Mayer and Fremy Speeddraw chat by the campfire.

Adlet Mayer and Fremy Speeddraw chat by the campfire.

I know that there are Adlet and Fremy shippers out there, and I’m one of you people, but this PRO isn’t really about the shipping of these two particular characters (though that is a plus). This PRO is more about how the first ten minutes of the episode impressed me by not only giving us a quick but efficient look into not one, but two of our protagonists’ backstories. It didn’t quite have that emotional punch that a prolonged Naruto or One Piece flashback might have, but I’m okay with that.

It gave us information about the characters’ pasts, hinted at what could come for them in the future and developed a relationship between Adlet and Fremy.

ALSO, TALKING FIEND!

ALSO, TALKING FIEND!

  • Adlet Mayer is Batman!

In a video I made summing up my impressions on the first six episodes of Rokka no Yuusha, I liken Adlet Mayer to the Dark Knight himself and I feel like this episode is further proof of that comparison.

When written poorly, Batman is an overpowered jack-of-all-trades that has a counter to everything and everyone, which makes him cool yes, but from a story telling prospective it’s kind of hokey and lame. In the hands of a more competent writer, Batman is grounded to just being a mortal man who pushes himself past his limits and someone who uses his wide-array of tools to give him an edge over insurmountable odds, may they be dozens of armed thugs or something more supernatural.

Adlet Mayer is the latter type of Batman. No, he’s not a grumpy prick that is the Caped Crusader, but just like Batman, Adlet Mayer is just a mortal man with no powers or any kind of special in-born talents or abilities. Everything that Adlet is now happened because he pushed himself past his limits and learned how to be adapt to any situation either with the help of his arsenal of tools or through his own cutting and wit.

Young Adlet learning how to make his arsenal of ninja like tools.

Young Adlet learning how to make his arsenal of ninja like tools.

I love characters like this. They’re grounded, the odds are against them and seeing them struggle and later triumph over impossible odds is just so much more satisfying than seeing yet another shounen hero who can transform into whatever form and overpower his opponents.

Young Adlet training relentlessly with Atro Spiker!

Young Adlet training relentlessly with Atro Spiker!

  • Fremy’s Past

Fremy’s past was only touched upon briefly, but again, it was efficiently told. It was enough to tell us about her character and how she feels. We learn about Fremy’s history and we learn about her motivation.

Fremy Speeddraw is determined to kill the Demon God.

Fremy Speeddraw is determined to kill the Demon God.

The thing about this episode that I really liked (but also kind of annoyed me) was the duality in Fremy’s character. I get why Hans and Chamo are suspicious of her, but I’m not going to lie, it’s getting a little tiring, especially since both Hans and Chamo feel like stock characters (the jokester assassin and the over-powered murderous cutie). But I do like how their suspicions did add to Fremy’s character in a way.

Earlier in the episode we learn about how Fremy feels betrayed by her mother and fiend family. Her sole motivation to kill the Demon God is to rub into the people that abandoned her the kind of monster they helped create. But even though she’s now cast aside her fiend blood and family, she’s still scene as a freak by her fellow Braves.

  • Aldet Mayer vs. Hans Humpty

The fight between Adlet and Hans was quick, but it was pretty enjoyable and the fact that it ended in a cliff-hangery way’s making me real excited for the next episode.

Adlet vs Hans!

Adlet vs Hans!

Stray Observation: When Goldof overhears the commotion back at the temple caused by Adlet and Hans’ fight, Nashetania brushes it off—the camera is positioned to her back, not showing us her face when she just started to walk away from the scene and lead Goldof away. If this isn’t a hint that Bunny Princess ain’t the 7th Brave, then I don’t know what it is.

EGAD! ON WHAT GROUNDS DO YOU MAKE THESE ACCUSATIONS TEMPTRESS!?

EGAD! ON WHAT GROUNDS DO YOU MAKE THESE ACCUSATIONS TEMPTRESS!?

CONS

  • Chamo and Hans are annoying.

I really dislike their characters right now and maybe it’s because we just haven’t had the time to get to know them better, but when they’re on the screen, all I see are stock characters.

All I see are Trope Characters.

All I see are Trope Characters.

VERDICT 

When I first saw Rokka no Yuusha, the only good thing I had to say about it was that it looked pretty and that Nashetania’s charms instantly made me fall for her—but now, it’s clear to me that despite having a super clichéd main plot, the way this show handles its characters and story-telling is impressive.

SCORE: 9/10 – Excellent!

  • PROS
    • The Adlet and Fremy Scenes
    • Adlet is Batman
    • Fremy’s Past
    • Adlet vs Hans
  • CONS
    • Chamo and Hans are annoying.
She won't.

She won’t.