20 CommentsFirst Impressions / By Scamp /

Freezing episode 1

For the record, just because I write about the first episode of a new show this season doesn’t mean I have any intention of writing about it weekly. Writing about every first episode is my fail-safe method of not picking up something unless it’s proven itself with at least two episodes. Secondly, just because I haven’t written about something doesn’t mean I haven’t watched it. It could just mean I have nothing interesting to say about it. Anyway, Freezing time.

Have you ever heard about the story behind the Negima manga and why it’s a harem? Ken Akamatsu wanted to write a shounen battle manga but wasn’t allowed to by his publishers. So he started Negima like any other crappy harem fest and gradually worked it into a battle manga with every volume. The start of Freezing makes me wonder is there something similar going on here. The author wants to write a serious psychological drama but is being forced by his publishers to include T&A shots. That, or his publishers are forcing him to put in a plot when all he wants to do is draw women fighting with their clothes being destroyed.

It’s annoying because there’s so much in Freezing that could make for a fascinating story. The show takes a lot of it’s visual cues from Evangelion with the way it presents the giant monster things and the awe-inspiring fear that radiates out from them. Freezing is also similar to Evangelion in that the ‘chosen ones’ are put through intense pain and mental suffering if they are going to fight these monsters. There’s a scene where they’re trying to heal those wounded in battle that contrasts the squeaky clean classroom scene. None of it’s done anywhere near as well as it’s done in Evangelion, but that’s obviously pretty high standards you’ve got there. Heck, even the young boy/older women combo has a lot of potential for weird relationships. Older sister become surrogate mother for estranged boy. Sadistic boy puts older girl through pain and she can’t refuse him because they’re tied together. There’s potential there for some really fascinating stuff.

But Freezing isn’t about that though. Remember that this comes from the same thought process that the likes of Ikkitousen or Queens Blade came from. This is about the clothes exploding mid-fight kind of stuff. It already has a massive bonus over the other two for having a potentially fascinating story. Compare my viewing experience of Freezing, where I counted Evanglion similarities, to Ikkitousen, where I spent my time counting panty shots, despire the two having roughly equal number of panty shots, give or take 10. But the tits ‘n ass get in the way. I’m watching for how they frame the Angel things, only to instead get treated to a screenfull of ass. When the main girl meets the main boy, she spends her time orgasming instead of perhaps a reaction that could be more in tune with the story of the anime. When one girl moaned rather loudly when she unleashes her weapon, I started concocting her reasoning behind fighting is that she had a lust after violence and got genuine sexual pleasure from unleashing her powers. However I was quickly forced to dismiss the idea when you consider it was more in tune with the show for it to have done that so the loser otaku can hear their favourite seiyuu moan.

Am I taking this anime too seriously? Yep, I guess I am. But I like taking my anime seriously. You get a lot more out of it when you do, so shame on you for not doing likewise. If this approach means I can’t get my hur hur boobs enjoyment from Freezing but can derive far more enjoyment from the visual cues in Madoka Magica, then I’m perfectly happy keeping to this form of viewing. I’m a big stinking elitist and I wouldn’t have my anime any other way.

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  1. CS
    Posted January 9, 2011 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

    I think it’s the latter, all they want is to draw chicks kicking ass but is being forced to shoe horn a story in. With fanservice every 2 mins I didn’t even notice there was a story until I watched it a second time. The story definitely has promise but probably going to take a back-seat to the tits. Hopefully I can be proved wrong and this gets amazing.

  2. Posted January 9, 2011 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

    Outside the fishbowl, this doesn’t make you an elitist, it makes you normal.

    • Scamp
      Posted January 9, 2011 at 11:31 pm | Permalink

      Spend too long listening to the minority opinion and you start to think you’re weird for not conforming with them

  3. Posted January 9, 2011 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

    I expected this anime to be really bad, so when I watched the first episode I was…pretty much blown away with shock. Sure, it’s obviously leaning towards an ecchi fest, and I bet it turns more that way as it continues and less towards anything truly interesting, but the story might be enough to carry it out of the muck where most ecchi battle anime reside, I hope.

    At least their weapons are cool.

  4. Posted January 9, 2011 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

    That was more than I expected.
    Gonna give it three episodes, then I will see.
    But I know people who say that the manhwa is quite cool.

  5. Posted January 9, 2011 at 11:54 pm | Permalink

    All of the author’s work is basically T&A. But, then again, the magazine Freezing is serialised in is pretty much all fighting girls stuff. So I don’t really know how the plot got there.

    The amount of fanservice peaks during the fight after the first one/s with Genessa. I found it to be incredibly squicky and uncomfortable there (and when you get knowledge of Satellizer’s past, it becomes pretty horrific in hindsight). But from then on… the fanservice starts to recede. And then plot actually happens, and gore levels – which have also been steadily increasing – spike.

    But I don’t know where the anime will go with things. Fanservice is pretty consistent with the source, but gore has been very much amped up. So I wouldn’t put it past them to add in some extra in the ecchi department. And, like I said, the fanservice in the next fight is awful. Maybe we’ll be lucky, though, and they’ll remove some of it?

    Posted January 10, 2011 at 3:09 am | Permalink

    “The author wants to write a ser­i­ous psy­cho­lo­gical drama but is being forced by his pub­lish­ers to include T&A shots. That, or his pub­lish­ers are for­cing him to put in a plot when all he wants to do is draw women fight­ing with their clothes being destroyed.”

    -I think the second speculation is much more tragic for the author o:

  7. Posted January 10, 2011 at 3:30 am | Permalink

    The end result is still a crappy ecchi anime. The moaning and the boobs and stuff are too annoying and prevalent for anything else to come through. This is why I hated High School of the Dead (though that one was clearly going for lots of boobs and butts and womens).

    Did anybody else find the training disturbing? Despite my qualm about the ecchi, Freezing’s major turnoff for me was the fact that the girls actually get their throats slit during training. That’s a little unnerving…

    • Thrashy
      Posted January 11, 2011 at 6:29 am | Permalink

      I had the same experience. I’ve got no problem with violence in my entertainment, but the sort of serial-killer cold casualness of it all, both in-universe and in how it’s presented to the viewer, is indeed rather disturbing. Graphic and gruesome deaths aren’t supposed to be something a viewer revels in, as Freezing so clearly expects us to (with nary but a weak hand-waved excuse of “…they got better!”). The fact that it’s being directed exclusively at women is even more frightening. I’m not sure that the author of this shows source material is someone I’d ever want to meet…

      • Posted January 11, 2011 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

        Seriously. And it’s even weirder given that it’s not like Infinite Stratos, where the girls fight because only they can fight. How come the guys don’t fight? I don’t see any convenient plot device that says males can’t fight…

  8. Posted January 10, 2011 at 4:18 am | Permalink

    There’s an off-putting level of graphic violence that makes either the ecchi level inappropriate or the blood-letting. Yeah, HSotD did that too, but that show handled it better and was more self-aware.

    Great minds think alike?

  9. Posted January 11, 2011 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

    Looks like i shall wait till the show is over before i start watching

  10. alexvoda
    Posted January 11, 2011 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

    As I see it this series has more in common with stuff like Sky Girls and Strike Witches than with Evangelion.

    Than again all of them might be twisted and more otaku pandering mutations of NGE.

    P.S.: I might be uninformed as I have only watched ep 1 of all three of them (SG, SW and Freezing) and I do not intend to watch the rest for either of them.

    PS/2 : Please write a review of the incest one of the season.
    I found your first review of OreImo incredibly amusing and true in its views and I am in need of amusment and of resolution number 2 for this year – “Call out sexual titillation-only anime for the crap they are

    • Scamp
      Posted January 11, 2011 at 9:40 pm | Permalink

      For crap anime this season I feel inclined to cover Rio Rainbow Gate. I’m afraid I’m kinda incest-ed out after last season

  11. Posted January 11, 2011 at 10:29 pm | Permalink

    I wasn’t planning to watch Freezing, period. Now I might have to.

  12. fury261
    Posted January 12, 2011 at 12:46 am | Permalink

    Of course the first thing i noticed when i watched the show is that there is tonzz of T&A so i automatically thought this would be like ikkitousen, sekirei or sumthin like that. After a minute or so without it, i could see a possible story but it wasnt until i saw the monster did i think the show was actually half decent. Plus the gore shown iz on par with the T&A so to me thats not all this show is about. I give the author props for takin on a different turn to these types of manga/anime and hopefully giving a half decent story. I think it should be given a chance.

  13. Posted January 22, 2011 at 1:29 am | Permalink

    Between you and me…

    I am tired of incest vibes in anime.

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