We are well aware that we’ve gone very quiet and not done a very good job of our anime reviews this year so far but we’ve been brought back by a anime I’m sure no one will be surprised interested us.
A killer game, high victim counts, only one probably will survive?
From the beginning it was a interesting story, it gives me flashes of the “love will conquer all” bullshit I personally hate before kind of hiding it away again, or in one case ripping it apart limb by limb, whether love will save the day I guess I’ll have to wait and see but for episode one all it did was make things worse.
I feel the first episode had troubles finding its feet. It was a bit all over the place, at first I thought the timing was off and we were jumping around in time quite a bit but there was only one point where the time lines kind of jumped back and forth and the original starting point of the anime and its place in the time line was explained away by one of many sad monologues the main character, Kanazawa Nobuaki, regaled us with in the episode.
Story wise its strong and it gets you all amped up and ready for the series as a whole.
Some force is texting a classroom full of kids orders and they have to do what the texts tell them to or else be punished for disobeying the King. Punishment is death in a manner of grizzly ways which included in this episode limbs falling off, hanging, drowning and bleeding out.
It has to get a 10/10 for the animation not only of the horrible deaths, the contorted face left by the guy who hung himself and the grizzly death of Yuuichi, who kinda deserved it for being a total dick, but the characters themselves are all unique and interesting which for a story revolving around 32 people even though most won’t be of much consequence to the story no doubt is a feat in itself. It also has a very unnerving way with the backgrounds at times.
Looking deeper at the characters though and they aren’t much to get your hopes up for. Nobuaki gets a pass because they are trying to portray a young man who lost everything having to go through this game once before. Unfortunately with the rather rushed feel to the episode he came across as a jerk, when we realised why he came across as a jerk he came across as being rather boring instead. It doesn’t help that he’s been forced into a coupling with Natsuko Honda who hears he has a girlfriend and is in love and yet still wants to kiss him…. She’s lucky she did get the kiss in before midnight as it saved her until further notice but her character comes across as only being there for him and therefore kind of lacking in anything but being a big, busty, over the top female to bluster up the lacklustre personality of a character with PTSD.
There hasn’t been much to really get to grips with the other students so far. One or two have shown individual personalities but the majority seemed to be a hive mind, hanging on the words of Yuuichi and easily swayed. Other then to be one of a great number of deaths in the series they feel like they have no purpose.
As for deaths plenty were killed in episode one. One of the commands the King made was not to go to sleep so those who didn’t realise, who didn’t get a warning from Natsuko in time or just ignored it in general were killed off, as was Yuuichi for attacking Nobuaki.
All in all from 32 we’re down to 22. A much easier number of students to manage.