Friday, April 11, 2014

Anime Review #2 Knights of Sidonia

Knights of Sidonia: First Impressions

I'll have to admit, I was a little dubious of this one when I first saw that it had an anime.  I'd tried the manga and found the pacing and action nearly impossible to follow.  What I got from the anime was a massive improvement.  While it seems to keep with the story told in the first issue of the manga, it does so in a much more cohesive way and I found it pretty enjoyable. 

The art style is sort of a flattened 3D animation for the characters in full 3D environments, the visuals at times seem like they may be a bit dated, but it seems to work for this project.  There wasn't a massive amount of showing off the animators did in the first episode, but there were some well composed sequences that were visually appealing. 

Story-wise, it's a deep space mecha vs. tentaclebeast setup with the Sidonia from the title being the supermassive ship that the characters live on.  The main character seems to be a bit of a stereotypical chosen one from a strange land, but they seem to make it fit into their story somewhat comfortably. 

Character design does leave a little bit to be desired, there's the shy, quiet type main character, then there's the privileged fancy boy with the long hair that seems like he will be the rival, a couple of hermaphrodites with bowl cuts, and about thirty girls with pink hair.  It's actually a bit difficult to differentiate them at this point. 

Overall, I'm actually interested in going forward with this series, I found it much easier to follow than the manga and it managed to leave me wanting to see more.  Hopefully the pink hairs and the bowl cuts will grow personalities that set them apart, or I'll get used to the minor differences in how they're drawn.  Time will tell whether this one is going to be an enduring entry into the mecha genre, but I'll give it a watch for awhile.

I give this anime a C+ ranking, but that could change as the series develops.  There were points where the story seemed to rush by too quickly, he's discovered and then thrown into one of the most revered mecha on the ship within the span of a day.  So far, character development hasn't been much of a consideration, it's only the first episode, but I'm having difficulty feeling anything for the main character.  Finally the series has little to appeal to non mecha fans, this was the key element that lowered it from a B- to the C+ it has.  We'll soon see how well this one holds up.  Watch it if you're into mecha and space battles, otherwise, you'll have difficulty connecting with this one. 

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