24 CommentsFirst Impressions / By Scamp /

Chaika the Coffin Princess episode 1 – Unicorn guts

[HorribleSubs] Hitsugi no Chaika - 01 [480p].mkv_snapshot_04.13_[2014.04.09_20.40.16]While there are little niggly things about the first episode of Chaika that could only be called as “fucking anime bullshit”, I was quite impressed by the structure and storytelling capabilities of this episode. We establish our main character. He is a fighter of sorts who has fallen on rough times and is struggling to place down a full time job. We establish our support lead character. A mysterious girl with a coffin on her back. We establish the world they’re in, being a world of magic and unicorns full with guts. We establish there’s something ~mysterious~ going on with this girl. All of this with basically zero exposition. Congratulations on that Chaika. You might not have great dialogue but you told a story without needless exposition. Wish more anime took a leaf out of your book.

Other signs of getting away from bad writing was the lack of stupid proper nouns. The main character was a Proper Noun, but he was the only one I counted in that episode and I think you’re allowed to have one Proper Noun. The main girl was a sorcerer, a proper noun I think I can handle because it’s already in our lexicon. She casts magic. She casts magic with what appears to be a giant sniper rifle, but that’s cool. I can roll with that. I can extrapolate without you having to explain why.

Hitsugi no Chaika - 01 - Large 17Also another sign of getting away from bad writing was humour. The main guy’s sister starts smashing up a restaurant because her brother is a worthless NEET freeloader without a job. You would think the clientèle would be annoyed that she’s smashing up the place, but instead they’re commenting on what a poor girl she is for having to put up with this useless freeloader brother, even thought from our perspective he is clearly trying to be useful and get a job. A joke delivered quickly, succiently, with even a little bit of social commentary to give it an edge, and best of all didn’t have the main character yell “whaaaaaaaaaat you’re on her side” like we can’t already bloody see that. All right, it’s not exactly Monty Python level of humour, but these things build up.

For those reasons, I was relatively impressed by Chaika the Coffin Princess. I’m even staying around for more, even if the premise isn’t exactly bursting with originality. However it does have the aforementioned fucking anime bullshit factor, which rears its head at little scenes. The little girl being covered in cum I mean sorry bread dough in a leery camera angle. The sister character muttering the line “even though you have me” because all sisters want to fuck their brothers. Fucking anime bullshit rears its ugly behind every now and then to remind you that one of these aspects could easily become a more central plot point and ultimately derail the entire proceedings.

Hitsugi no Chaika - 01 - Large 12But it did have a unicorn explode in a pile of guts and entrails so for that I’m watching more.

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  1. gedata
    Posted April 10, 2014 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

    If you thought the bro-con hint here was bad, this was literally the very first scene of the manga


    • Scamp
      Posted April 11, 2014 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

      Hah, you’re right. I had actually read that bit of the manga. Anime > Manga as I’ve always said

  2. Posted April 10, 2014 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

    I liked the implication (which I am totally reading into the episode) that in this world being great at violence is not actually a particularly good way to make money, since the main guy and his sister are clearly pretty good at ass-kicking yet they’re struggling to find jobs.

    (Well, at least the main guy is. I think there were hints that the sister has a job.)

    • Scamp
      Posted April 11, 2014 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

      Violence doesn’t make you money?

      Shit, that’s where I’ve been going wrong all these years

  3. Canary Paint
    Posted April 10, 2014 at 9:41 pm | Permalink

    This anime is solidly in my “not yet dropped” category for all the reasons you mentioned…

    I must be naive since I had not noticed that bread dough could be cum though I had noticed and was annoyed by the “anime bullshit” brother-sister thing.

    I must say that I csn totally see how a particularly crafted gun might amplify magic ;-p

  4. Lazy
    Posted April 10, 2014 at 9:47 pm | Permalink

    No comment about the eyebrows?
    That’s surprising, I picked up this show just for them. Exploding unicorns are just a bonus.

    • Nagisa33
      Posted April 11, 2014 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

      Hmmmm, it looks like she’s the successor to the Prominent Eyebrows of Intrigue. They’ve been passed down from season to season ever since Commander Amarao from FLCL first appeared. Satsuki vigorously used them to her advantage last season. I wonder who’ll bear the brow next time?

    • Scamp
      Posted April 11, 2014 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

      Those eyebrows looked like she killed a man and stole his eyebrows. They clearly aren’t hers

  5. Cirith
    Posted April 10, 2014 at 11:56 pm | Permalink

    I would also class the weird speech pattern under anime bullshit, but it maybe has some in story reason or something.

    • Posted April 11, 2014 at 12:07 am | Permalink

      My optimistic assumption about Chaika’s speach patterns is that they’re supposed to be a sign that she’s speaking the language as a second language and her native tongue is something else. The more manga-y version is that they’re a sign that she’s under some sort of magical influence.

      I’m probably doomed to be disappointed here and it’s just anime bullshit to make her cuter and quirkier.

      • Scamp
        Posted April 11, 2014 at 9:28 pm | Permalink

        I think it’s anime bullshit, particularly after the bread dough scene, but I like your explanation.

    • R1CK_D0M
      Posted April 15, 2014 at 12:18 am | Permalink

      I was under the impression that she was straight up just never educated in language properly. Like from the cold intro it looked like she was brought up in the middle of nowhere with a monster thing.

    • digi
      Posted June 22, 2014 at 1:07 am | Permalink

      I think you’re right about the magical influence thing. The guy at the end of episode 1 said she was supposed to be dead… well what if she still is but her body was given life from a magic spell. Huh?

  6. Mr. Anon
    Posted April 11, 2014 at 12:11 am | Permalink

    >The main girl was a sorcerer, a proper noun I think I can handle because it’s already in our lexicon.

    But that’s just a regular noun. If she was *the* Sorcerer it would be a proper noun, but no.

    • Scamp
      Posted April 11, 2014 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

      Don’t you go getting all grammar on me

  7. Posted April 11, 2014 at 4:10 am | Permalink

    What, not a single crack about how the setup seems SUSPICIOUSLY similar to Scrapped Princess? I’m disappointed, 5camp.

    • Scamp
      Posted April 11, 2014 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

      I know they’re the same author, but come on they’re not that similar. Scrapped Princess is about a girl with a dangerous power she doesn’t really understand as a brother and a sister travel around a fantasy land with her protecting her. Meanwhile Chaiki is about a girl with a dangerous power she doesn’t really understand as a brother and a sister travel around a fantasy land…

      …ok maybe you have a point.

  8. Eadwacer
    Posted April 11, 2014 at 6:30 am | Permalink

    I like the way the main part of the episode started — Acura beating the bushes with a blade, saying “Man…Isn’t there any money lying around somewhere”?

    • Posted April 11, 2014 at 10:22 am | Permalink

      I know, what a dunce. Clearly you’re supposed to explode the unicorn then look for money lying around in its bits and pieces.

      Monsters contain gold; not bushes. That’s just how these things operate!

    • Eadwacer
      Posted April 11, 2014 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

      I think he was channeling Link

  9. Shikamaru
    Posted April 11, 2014 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

    I’m suprised that you liked this episode that much. Sadly this is one of the best first episodes. This season is so mediocre. I usually try to watch at least 15 anime per season but there isn’t that many decent shows right now.

    Also, those eyebrows are so moe.

  10. Shinmaru
    Posted April 11, 2014 at 6:35 pm | Permalink

    I liked this a lot more than expected. Not that it’s amazing, but everything came together to form a decent first episode and a setup with some legs. Even the super anime stuff didn’t bother me too much. (If it repeats, though …)

    Also, violent unicorn explosion.

    • Scamp
      Posted April 11, 2014 at 9:31 pm | Permalink

      That’s where I’m at. The anime bullshit wasn’t that annoying this episode, but I can totally see it repeating and getting more prominent

  11. strukingfourd
    Posted April 11, 2014 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

    Loli Django?

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