Weekly Anime Review

April has finally started and we finally have a new anime season. “Ozma” only has 2 episodes left (I wish this was longer), and “Accel World’s” first episode was broadcasted. Next week I should have a few more shows to talk about, but let’s start with these.

Ozma ep 4

So the Captain’s name is Bainas, and Sam’s brother name is/was Dick. You know, this show so needs more than six episodes. I feel like I’m watching a 20+ episode series here. Information is dumped every episode, but there is so much world-building possible.

Barnados surfacing
Full speed ahead!

Also, Theseus is full of internal political strife. They don’t need any Natura to fight. Doing it among themselves seems to work as well. Here we have Gido, who just wants to take General Danga’s place by using Maya. They make me think of all the aristocratic governments. Full of backstabbing, envy, greed and blood. Just like the Empire in Star Wars and countless other stories. Maya is a nice girl, though.

The main event of this episode was: submarine warfare! Not something you see often anymore; submarines aren’t as popular as they were and, most of the time, it’s just torpedoes, sonar and decoys. But here we have Bainas as Captain, and she is a crazy and unorthodox strategist. She could give Lelouch a run for his money in Code Geass.  It was an awesome episode for people who like chess and strategy, though. Not long enough for me, but next episode promises a lot of staring between Bainas and Gido…

Accel World ep 1

So our main character is a fat little boy who has BIG self-worth issues and hates when people pity him. His virtual world avatar is a pig (apparently, the novel explains how he got it). Still, I’m sure the “pig” appearance explains what he think of himself. His web name is Haru, so I’m going to call him that from now on. Lucky for us, his friends are called Taku and Chiyu. I’m sure we can make lots of Haiku out of these.

Haru the main character
Haru the main character

Accel World is an adaptation of a Japanese light novel. I haven’t checked it out that much; somehow, I tend to enjoy a show more if I don’t know what is supposed to happen, so I’m avoiding spoilers. The first episode makes it seem like the novel extrapolates on where our future is going with the Internet and information access: everybody is linked to the Internet all the time and use virtual programs to escape life. It also includes teenagers’ slice-of-life, video gaming and I guess “be careful who you fall in love with” scenarios…

After seeing the first few minutes of this episode, I’m not sure if I would like to live in a world where everybody is connected all the time to the Internet. You get “I got mail” notices at the worst times. Everybody can find you if you “direct link” into the virtual world, and you lose your privacy…unless people don’t care if you exist.

So the story is about Haru getting new software installed: Brain Burst 2039, an online war game. Somehow, I don’t think it was exactly what he was expecting. I suspect that the person who gave it to him forgot to explain everything about it. Said person is the current student president. You know the drill: prettiest girl in the school, always has 4 or 5 girls fangirling around her and a few boys, has lots of money and she is super manipulative. Her nickname is Princess Snow Black and her avatar is a black butterfly.

You know, while I wouldn’t want to be plugged in to the web all the time, the Brain Burst program is kind of nice. It recreates 3D imagery and makes you experience it in an accelerated way, which means you can react faster. It gives you lots of time to think and allows you to walk around your surroundings. The time compression is one real-time second for ~16 minutes. There is just one side effect: it’s the equivalent of a real life Street Fighter.

The first episode was pretty good, despite being slightly cliché. I’m not sure if the voice actor for Haru was the correct pick, but he sounds less annoying here than in Guilty Crown, despite being just as emo. I guess this is just less serious, so it’s doesn’t seem as bad. My overall impression is Alice in Wonderland mixed with Street Fighter. We will see where this is going, but it looks like a bit of a trip, and I expect some sort of plot at some point, not just slice-of-life and street fighting.

The show is available in simulcast on Viz Media, Hulu (both US only) and (in French)

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