17 CommentsFirst Impressions / By Scamp /

A Bunch of First Impressions

I made the vow a couple of seasons back not to write a first impressions post if I couldn’t say enough interesting about it to warrant a full post. Which is all well and good, but most of the first episodes this season left me with rather little to say. I still want to say my piece though. So instead of giving them a post each, I’m returning back to Ye Olde Days style of first impressions with several anime reviewed at once.

Gosick

The way some people were going on about this you’d swear this was the most boring anime ever created. Sure, it’s got nowhere near as much effort put into it as previous Bones productions. The animation is annoyingly average with dull character designs. The pacing is off and they rush into introducing Victorique when it could have been done with much more finesse. The mystery is rather lame and answered before we even have a chance to consider the possibilities ourselves. The main character’s only trait is that he spends the entire episode whining. A lot of the supposed humour is based around this and simply isn’t funny. But guys, this isn’t that bad! It has a gothic loli rolling about on the ground with a pipe in her mouth to amuse herself. Yeah, I’m not exactly selling this very well, am I?

Beelzebub

DEAR PRODUCERS OF BEELZEBUB. DO YOU KNOW THAT SHOUTING EVERY SINGLE LINE DETRACTS FROM THE TIMES YOU ACTUALLY WANT TO MAKE A JOKE? YOU SHOUT THINGS THAT AREN’T FUNNY AND OVER-EXAGURATE ACTIONS THAT WOULD BE MUCH FUNNIER PUT IN A DEADPAN VOICE. OR EVEN A REGULAR VOICE COULD DELIVER SOME OF THESE ACTIONS WELL. OK, enough caps lock. There’s a great idea here, but it’s killed by the execution. The over-reacting delinquents at the start reminded me of Cromartie High School, but when everyone over-reacts like that it takes the humour out of their over-reactions. Over-react to everything means nothing gets over-reacted to because it’s all delivered in the same tone. This goes beyond ‘not funny’. This saps the humour out of situations that should be funny. You’re killing yourself Beelzebub.

Level E

Best first episode of the season, at least until Noitamina rolls in fashionably late as usual. Sure, it has that annoying shouty straight man complex that anime typically have, but the important point here is that it’s actually performing funny jokes. The ET parody was funny anyway, with or without a straight man pointing out the joke afterwards. It balanced the episode perfectly as well. We all knew he was an alien anyway, but they still introduced each piece of proof gradually with ever expanding powers. First the controller thing that could be connected to the spacecraft. Then he jumps out the window and only after all that do we see his hippy powers. The animation budget isn’t exactly high, but for a change it seems to know how to tell a damn story.

Kore Wa Zombie Desuka?

Do you know what’s killing the anime industry? Not necessarily moe, it’s self-referential otaku crap. Stuff that makes no sense and fails to appeal to those outside or less connected with fandom, but winks endlessly to those inside fandom. It panders to the smallest and ever-dwindling crowd because it knows memes. This is the same as Baka to Test exactly a year ago. I was sucked in by the self-referential nature of Baka to Test originally before realising later on how it had nothing beyond that and simply repeated those jokes. This will turn into the same thing. It already is the same thing. Wait for it anime fandom. I will be proven right on this one.

Dragon Crisis

For what is ultimately the single most generic anime this season has farted out, this was surprisingly well made. Like, really really well produced and structured. The animation style is neat, expanding on that blobby style in a rather strange way. The music is utterly godly, I have genuinely never heard classroom music as good as this. The episode was perfectly structured from first to last, never keeping on one point for too long. It’s a shame all this effort was put into Dragon Crisis. I’m not sure they could have come up with an episode more generic or a male lead with less personality. I do want to keep watching this in the desperate hope that this show will do something original to justify the great production values, but I’m obviously not holding out much hope.

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16 Comments

  1. mcm38
    Posted January 13, 2011 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    I think Beelzebub is great tough. It’s still entertaining enough. Unlike Midori Days, Tenjou Tenge, Seto no Hayanome or any other anime with delinquents, Beelzebubs delinquent part is actually well made and entertaining.

    Kore wa Zombie still attracts me not cause it’s a otaku pandering, but it’s the first anime I’ve ever seen with a Zombie as the protagonist. This may lead to unusualy entertaining situations in the future.

    Btw, baby Bel ftw /(>.<)/

  2. Piepe
    Posted January 13, 2011 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

    it’s hard to take you seriously, when you are talking about goth lolis (seriously? it’s one of the most overused anime cliche besides that retarded maid sht) and “perfect” this and “perfect” that..all right, know i’m taking myself too seriously about generic crap, that fails to impress year over year over year. That just my disappointment talking :(
    let us see how wolverine will turn out :)

    • Scamp
      Posted January 13, 2011 at 8:05 pm | Permalink

      I originally wrote “little girl” instead of loli because I hate the sexual connotations attached to the word but changed it because it fit the silly reason to like the show I wanted to put out.

      Watch the Noitamina shows if you’re feeling jaded with anime today

  3. Posted January 13, 2011 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

    Can’t say I agree with the overly pessimistic view on Kore wa Zombie, but I definitely didn’t find it as funny as many seem to have. But I didn’t think that was due to an overuse of otaku moe in-jokes.

  4. OHEMGEE
    Posted January 13, 2011 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

    Awh.
    Gosick was the anime I looked forward to most.
    I adore the mystery genre.
    Goth loli simply won’t make up for it if the mystery isn’t any good :c

    • Casandra
      Posted January 14, 2011 at 10:16 am | Permalink

      The real mystery in Gosick really only kicked off at the end of the first episode and I think it’s a pretty good one. (I’ve read the light novel)

      The first episode did rush the introductions too much. I guess they wanted to get straight into the mystery in the next episode.

      Give at least the next one a try before writing it off.

  5. Posted January 13, 2011 at 7:53 pm | Permalink

    Wow, you’re blowing these show’s flaws way out of proportion. In particular, I really don’t think you’re giving GOSICK, Level E and Zombie Desu Ka enough credit. Each one of them manages to tell a solid, well-executed story with endearing (if not entirely original) characters. And, at the end of the day, isn’t an entertaining narrative more important than anything else? Quit being so nitpicky and save your cynicism for the truly terrible shows of the season, like Infinite Stratos and FREEZING.

    • Scamp
      Posted January 13, 2011 at 8:12 pm | Permalink

      The better a show is, the more critical eye it deserves. With something like Freezing, broad statements cover everything you need to say. But if something is good, you need to examine it closer. Hence the flaws become more apparent and I write about it.

      Besides, I was positive about Level E =|

  6. Posted January 13, 2011 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

    I was very happy with Level E. Didn’t really count it into my expected watches for the season, but I really hope it keeps going the way it is.

    And with Hourou Musuko and Fractale (and some shows I didn’t like but everyone else did), this spring season might not be as boring as anticipated. =d

    • Scamp
      Posted January 13, 2011 at 11:03 pm | Permalink

      I did say this season would be better than people were making it out to be. As usual nobody listened >=(

      • Posted January 13, 2011 at 11:37 pm | Permalink

        Hey, I never said anything either way. 8D
        This season, next season: I feel like I can’t predict. There’s a lot of anime that seems potentially awesome in the next though, and this is looking good to far, so eh.

        MAYBE ANIME IS FIXING ITSELF.

        (hahahha)

  7. Posted January 13, 2011 at 11:07 pm | Permalink

    For a lot of these, I completely agree with you. Gosick, Beelzebub, Level E and Dragon Crisis. But…Kore wa Zombie desu ka?, I love. I love it why? It’s in no way trying to take itself seriously, and it made me laugh, then laugh some more and just keep laughing. I’m praying it doesn’t get repetitive. I’m in love with it. Crack and nothing more, and I need that sometimes.

  8. Vain
    Posted January 14, 2011 at 12:15 am | Permalink

    Personally I thought that the first episode of Beelzebub went really well. I was expecting that it will be disappointing experience like the first episode of Fairy Tail, another manga adaptation that I was looking forward to, but it dispelled all my fears.

    I am the type of guy that extremely rarely laughs out loud at anything. I usually just smile when I think something is funny but this episode made me laugh several times out loud.

    Objectively I could agree that the jokes could have been done a bit differently and thus made more funny but overall I think the first episode is a huge success. Well at least in my rabid fan opinion. x)

    Also Dragon Crisis is soooo bad imo. From the boobs in your face treatment, to ambiguous plotline, to girl falling in the protagonist’s lap, the said girl having super powers.

    Well to be frank I can’t say too much bad about it but the overall impression that it left was very bad indeed. Of all the shows I have seen for this season this is the poorest one.

    Also that girl with that Shana voice actress for some reason scares me shitless. Whenever she says his name…

    Inexplicable. =P

  9. Black Dalek
    Posted January 14, 2011 at 5:34 am | Permalink

    Level e looks more like my favorite martian with a slice of alf

  10. Posted January 20, 2011 at 5:19 am | Permalink

    If there were any self-referencing in the Zombie show, it went over my head. I’m just easily amused, and like fun shows. Although if there is suppose cancer killing the industry, imo, it’s shows will references aimed at the American otaku, not the Japanese ones.

    That, and the anti-pirating measures…

    • Posted January 20, 2011 at 6:03 am | Permalink

      Also, you mirror my thoughts on Beezlebub and Dragon Crisis perfectly.

      I think you actually weren’t as annoyed by Gosick as I was. Although Gosick managed to be so bad it amused me.

One Trackback

  • By winter 2011 part 2 « sometimes on January 14, 2011 at 12:34 am

    […] Scamp makes a good point about this show, though.  The self-referential style of this show may damage it.  But you know […]

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