13 CommentsDurarara / By Scamp /

Durarara episode 1

Just before I watched the first episode of Durarara, I found myself flicking back through old entries on Animenano and seeing how little an impact Baccano left when it first hit the air. The only posts I found on it were people wondering why on earth this show wasn’t more popular. However you can’t keep quality down for long. Word of mouth spread, ratings rose and slowly but surely word filtered through that anime fandom had missed one of the best shows of the year. Popularity rose as more recommendations flooded in until, fast forward to 2010, and Durarara becomes the most anticipated new show of the winter season based mainly upon the fact it’s done by the same team.

Now to give you a brief glimpse of how much I loved Baccano, let me list out all the anime I’ve watched in order of how much I like them until I reach Baccano. Death Note. Baccano. There, see? Find me someone who loves Baccano more than I do and I’ll show you someone who hasn’t watched Death Note yet. So even though this will obviously be the most over-blogged show of the season, I could hardly let this oppertunity pass. I’m not so much hopping on the bandwagon as calling shotgun on the passengers seat in the front.

Right off the bat there are several similarities between the two. The most obvious of which is the huge explosion of characters right in episode one. The opening in Baccano certainly helped with that and the names again are listed by in the opening to Durarara. While we may have a full 24 episodes to remember these names, I can already see a potential problem there. This show is on Crunchyroll. CR never translate the opening so I have serious doubts that they’ll translate the names in the opening either. This first episode was done by gg fansubs but I’m pretty sure they’re not going to continue. I hope the names get translated in the opening but just in case they don’t I’m gonna screencap all the names from the opening and stick them at the end of this post. I’m hopeless with names and even worse trying to remember Japenese names. Actually I can’t remember a single characters name, not even this guy.

He spent the entire episode yapping away and I haven’t a clue what his name is *checks screenshots at the bottom* Masoami Kida? Good for him. Being bombarded with so much information in the first episode, it’s impossible to keep up but, again comparing to Baccano, they don’t expect you to keep up. All they expect is to leave an overall impression of the show and little bits of info will have trickled into your mind. So many characters, so many personalities and yet the only thing I can remember off the top of my head is that the main character, err…*checks bottom of the page again* Mikado, is an eensy bit racist. That ‘a guy who just so happens to be black’ made me laugh. OK, I remember a bit more than that. How on earth could I forget her?

Yes her. I’m sure you all noticed those curves in that full body leather catsuit, even fit with a nice pair of ears on the helmet. To think you usually associate fairies with pretty, prancy little creatures with sparkles and flowers. Not in anime I’m afraid. Nope, those things with sparkles are called ‘bishies’. Assuming she is a dullala (no spell checker, not a dullard), one of those headless Irish fairies, you can see we make our fairies slightly differently in Ireland. We give our fairies motorbikes and scythes and then ship them off to Japan.

One thing I liked about the whole fight scene was the the ‘baddies’ (they kidnapped a poor, defenceless and suicidal girl, of course they’re baddies) weren’t all a bunch of panicky wimps. OK, I’d panic at the site of my pal getting his face smashed in by a catgirl on a motorbike doing a wheelie too but at least these guys fought back. Stun gun, quick braking maneuvers. OK, hardly epic stuff but so often you would just see these guys panic and run away, with their trousers falling down for comic effect or something equally dumb. Durarara has more quality than that though.

That’s the most promising aspect of Durarara. No, not the random Horo, although that was certainly welcome, but the fact that it oozed quality from every pore. The true test of quality is whether a show can still be good even when not much is happening. The dialogue is witty, the characters are a wacky bunch (ok, not as wacky as Baccano but I really should stop comparing the two now) and nothing ever feels forced. In the same way that the first episode of Eden of the East embarrassed everything else that season without even doing very much, Durarara does the exact same. Not that this episode was a good as the first episode of Eden, but it definitely eclipsed every other first episode of the current season.

Time for some theorizing. The girl who bumped into the main character towards the end with that scar on her neck will obviously show up again. Now if I remember correctly from the synopsis, this crazy Irish fairy is looking for her head. Any chance that this is the head and that she was running away from the fairy? Think about it, the fairy appeared about 30 seconds after she ran off. I probably shouldn’t be theorizing so early in the game but it’s something to keep in mind.

And now, character names! Sorry about the song lyrics but there was no way of separating the translated names and the lyrics.

What I used to do when watching Baccano was try to name the characters before their names came up on screen. Jacuzzi Splot was the easiestbut I could never remember the name of the Gandor family characters. With them all having Japanese names in Durarara, this will be a considerably more difficult task.

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13 Comments

  1. luffyluffy
    Posted January 8, 2010 at 11:24 pm | Permalink

    I thought of you, when I saw Horo and I dont even watch Spice and Wolf 8D This.. looks like it’s going to be so much fun :3

  2. Rodienne
    Posted January 8, 2010 at 11:31 pm | Permalink

    Durarara!! This was an awesome episode. That scythe-thing was soo friggin’ cool. And when she slammed that guy’s head into the wall… yeah. ^^. Seems like it should be a really good series if it continues like this, but I won’t be learning all the character names, regardless…

  3. Posted January 9, 2010 at 2:20 am | Permalink

    Definitely the best first episode of the season that I’ve seen, and by a good distance too. It’s a good episode to introduce the viewer to the culture of this town and give it some life before all the craziness goes down. That guy getting his face run over by the motorcycle is enough to sate my bloodlust for now.

    I’d bet anything that the black guy is going to kick an enormous amount of ass, and I’d bet all my winnings from that bet that it will be fucking awesome.

  4. Béla
    Posted January 9, 2010 at 2:55 am | Permalink

    Too bad I can’t even recall like half of those characters from the episode.

  5. Posted January 9, 2010 at 3:07 am | Permalink

    Okay, to be entirely honest, and I’m going to get this out of the way, Baccano! is my #1 anime and yes, I have seen Deathnote.

    Putting that aside, no matter how excited I am for this show, I’m going to wait a week to watch it free on Crunchyroll as a matter of principle. It’s going to be an agonizing week but hopefully I’ll survive it.

    I’m so happy to see you’re blogging this series (though I already knew you would be). And those screencaps at the end are sure to be helpful.

    I look forward to reading more of your Durarara entries!

  6. Faye_Zhoa
    Posted January 9, 2010 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    Pretty shock bout the Horo thing *Long time no see Horo~*
    Two thumbs up for this anime!!

  7. Scamp
    Posted January 9, 2010 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    @luffyluffy

    Thanks to my Horo spamming in the Responding to Hetalia Comments post I assume :)

    @Rodienne

    I think we’re all in love with that irish fairy now

    @Shinmaru

    He might just be one of those gentle giant characters. He seemed that way from what little we saw of him, but there may still be some time for drink-machine hurling for him yet

    @Béla

    I don’t think half of them even appeared in the episode

    @Siri

    I’ve paid my dues on CR so I’ll be watching them simulcast, mwahahaha! And yeah, Baccano vs Death Note took me a long time to choose but Death Note had more depth and therefore left a longer lasting effect which what won it in the end.

    Also, glad you’re following me for this series!

    @Faye_Zhoa

    More Horo is always a good thing. ALWAYS!!!

  8. Duelit
    Posted January 9, 2010 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    I like Baccano over Death Note. Plain and Simple. ^^

  9. Posted January 9, 2010 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

    i think you missed the girl that u theorized about… (checking the name on his own saved screenshots only to find an excessive amount of shots of the fight scene) i thought she was just psychotic or androphobic. nice post!

  10. luffyluffy
    Posted January 9, 2010 at 8:51 pm | Permalink

    Why yes Scamp, yes it is. (It migtht also be worth while to mention that Hetalia is indirectly responcible for watching Durarara!! And Baccano! XD I had scene the Hetalia version of Baccano’s opening, and thats why I started it, and this is why I’m watching Durarara… >:3 )

  11. Scamp
    Posted January 9, 2010 at 9:17 pm | Permalink

    @Duelit

    BLASPHEMY!

    Yeah, I was just kidding over that Baccano vs Death Note thing. Just my totally biased views.

    @poro

    Yeah, turns out I somehow didn’t get half the names I wanted to get it. Loading pictures seems to take ages on this site and I missed a few when I first posted this. I even missed the main character…

    @luffyluffy

    Baccano deserves all the credit it gets and I’m glad people are watching it thanks to my posts. I should remember love from my favourite anime a bit more often

  12. Posted January 10, 2010 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    I am one of those SAD people that had been so hyped on Baccano yet not much people are acknowledging its awesomeness =_= I’m happy many have been complaining on its lack of popularity xD And I hope DRRR will help it get more recognized =D

    “Mikado, is an eensy bit racist. That ‘a guy who just so hap­pens to be black’ made me laugh.”
    —> Mikado’s thoughts on it made me laugh too xD Haha. I don’t see him that racist though. At least he didn’t finalize his thoughts on just referring to Simon as a “black guy”

    “One thing I liked about the whole fight scene was the the ‘bad­dies’ (they kid­napped a poor, defence­less and sui­cidal girl, of course they’re bad­dies) weren’t all a bunch of pan­icky wimps.”
    —> it also got me so relieved that even though they’re dickheads, they’ve got guts! Even after they see a comrade get pwned, they still have guts! OMG, this series makes me praise even extra characters~

    “Now if I remem­ber cor­rectly from the syn­op­sis, this crazy Irish fairy is look­ing for her head. Any chance that this is the head and that she was run­ning away from the fairy? Think about it, the fairy appeared about 30 seconds after she ran off. I prob­ably shouldn’t be the­or­iz­ing so early in the game but it’s some­thing to keep in mind.”
    —> many have a similar theory~

  13. Scamp
    Posted January 10, 2010 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

    @Sapphire Pyro

    Baccano’s popularity has shot up in the past year to the point that everyone now knows the name, which is bloody brilliant. Everyone’s talking about Durarara this season thanks to Baccano

    Yeah, I’ve seen that theory tossed about already. With so many people blogging this show there’s going to be plenty of theories shot about

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