Posted by psgels on 4 March 2007 with categories: Strange Dawn

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Short Synopsis: Now that the enemy has fled, Darl tries to make the villagers get rid of Shall. Especially now that the two great protectors have announced to leave. He still believes in them, though.
Good: How! Incredibly! Refreshing!!!
Bad: It’s annoying! This series is sparking so much thoughts into me, but I just can’t get them into words.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8.5/10

Oh my god. I’ve fallen in love with another anime. I don’t care if this anime turns out to be disappointing for the rest of its episodes. The past two episodes were SO worth watching, as they easily breached more than a dozen clichés. I can’t believe how realistic this anime portrays the actions of our heroes, and I can’t believe how incredibly NEGLECTED this anime has become!

Like I mentioned above, this episode felt SO refreshing, I want to say so much about it, but I feel that I just can’t put all of my feelings to words and do this series justice. I’ll try, though. For starters, usually in battle, when people die you see a few shots of them in the midst of dying, usually with lots of blood, and that’s the rest you’ll see of them. In Strange Dawn, however, this guy really mattered in the aftermath. His death was seen as a real loss, and we even see his family in pain, even though that’s the first time we see him. If an anime really wants to try, it gives a bit of background about the guy before he dies, but never have I seen that background is given after the guy died, like in Strange Dawn. This emphasizes the fact that he’s just a random victim even more. His son, coming to Eri, asking her to bring his father back was heart-wrenching.

Also, how many times have we seen characters who get thrown into unexpected situations, and suddenly know exactly how to behave? Or they take one episode, in which they yell at the one responsible about how they never asked about their “duties”, and then suddenly everything’s fine and they’re ready to save the world? Probably too many to count. The combination of Eri and Yuki greatly breaks this stereotype. Eri likes to dream and keep everyone pleased. She’s afraid to go against people, and she likes the idea of keeping everyone happy. Because of that, she tries a few things here and there, but you can see that she doesn’t even try.

Yuki, meanwhile, cares far less about what other people think of her. She hates being in the centre of attention, and with people referring to her as the “great protector”, just because she’s large greatly annoys her. All she cares about is getting home. To make things even better, we don’t have that melodramatic crap where a character like that sees the light in the end, and cooperates with the main character like nothing happened. She indeed helped during the last episode, but that was probably more out of a reflex than wanting to help out at all costs.

I also love the village chief. He’s the perfect example of how easily people are influenced. Also, notice the vultures which have been circling around the town. Eri also was cute when she tried to find a toilet. It’s definitely something you’d expect of her. She just keeps worrying too much over things, and while Yuki started the toilet-thing, the probably forgot it not long after she said it.

When I first saw Shall, I feared that he’d be your standard strong hero. Even with that, I’m proven wrong. He isn’t impulsive at all, heck, he has lots of doubts about himself. For some reason, though, he keeps clinging to the thought that Eri and Yuki are the great protectors. It seems that he went to “the city” for a while, which seems to suggest that he went to the main capital, and that the village is just an outpost. Something probably happened during his stay in the city, which influenced him greatly.

I probably missed a lot of things in this short review, but there’s one final thing I’d like to say, if you skimmed through this article: do NOT get fooled by the character designs! The story in fact is quite dark and serious!

7 Responses

  1. Galen says:

    Strange Dawn gets no loving because only episodes 1-7 were released in the US; it was fully dubbed, and broadcast in England, but isn’t available on Home Video (except in French and Italian).
    -Galen

  2. Songster says:

    Just wanted to thank you for your blog. I have begun to follow some interesting series, including this one. I hope it does turn out well; breaking away from some cliches, and proding some great character studies. I am also now downloading the subbed version of ep1 _Flag, Second Season_, hoping it will have the kind of quality I intially hoped for from _Pumpkin Scissors_.

    Cheers, Songster

  3. psgels psgels says:

    The second season of Flag? Interesting, I didn’t know that one was already out. I loved the first season, so may I ask where you acquired it?

  4. Songster says:

    Now that I think on it–> I was under the impression that the series title was _Flag, Second Season_, rather than _Flag_. *smacks brain* I did not realize that until I had seen the OP. Unfortunately, I have not seen subs other than the ones on the site which has covered the first half-dozen episodes. Once again, I’m sorry to get you excited over nothing. And thank you for blogging several unloved yet wonderful series!

  5. psgels psgels says:

    Ah, no problem. ;)

    And thanks for the compliment. It’s unfair that such excellent series are neglected so much.

  6. TheStation says:

    You still want to see/blog this ?
    http://www.archonia.com and search for Strange Dawn. It’s fully subbed ( dutch ) .
    By the way,
    do you actually buy anime ?

  7. Lerry says:

    the hell i was looking for this anime in the net coz i forgot the title, and i really want to give this anime a full credit coz all of you who think this anime is cartoonish and childish, well it is kinda cartoonish, but the story is way too dark and void for a kid to watch. Battle scenes are also good. Where the hell can i watch this anime?!! i want to watch it so bad.. T.T

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  • SuperMario
    (Tuesday, May 3. 2016 04:09 PM)
    @Bam: just watched it and yes, I dig it. Quite a lot. Can’t wait to see his new film “Aquarius” (which from what I heard was cutting back from 6 hours raw material)
  • SuperMario
    (Tuesday, May 3. 2016 12:46 PM)
    @Bam: yeah, that sounds good. I will watch it and tell you how I think (hope my taste is not that weird ^^)
  • SuperMario
    (Tuesday, May 3. 2016 12:45 PM)
    @Bam: for some weird reasons I prefer Inherent Vice as it as, if the film was better or the plot was tigher I would think Anderson as a more calculated director. This version of Injerent Vice is wild and more crazy that actually make me think more fondly of him.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, May 3. 2016 12:27 PM)
    @SuperMario: Neighbouring Sounds was great. Judging from what I gathered of your taste, my money’s on you digging it as well.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, May 3. 2016 12:23 PM)
    @SuperMario: as I said I really liked the tone and the atmosphere and the atmosphere in Inherent Vice, but the overarcing plot is thin and True Dtectige season 2’s level of self-importance. A lot of scenes serve as mere venues for the great actors just cheering the secondary. A.tighter script and a little less directorial indulgence would’ve made it a lot better. Punch-Drunk Love is one such great example.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, May 3. 2016 12:16 PM)
    @Kaiser: the Master is brilliant, and I liked Boogie Nights, but others have much more love for it than me.
  • SuperMario
    (Tuesday, May 3. 2016 11:59 AM)
    Btw, in preparation for Cannes, I plan to watch Kleber Mendonça Filho’s previous work Neighbouring Sound. Have any of you watched the movie yet?
  • SuperMario
    (Tuesday, May 3. 2016 11:31 AM)
    I think P.T Anderson is one of the rare director who doesn’t go wrong with his works. There will be blood and the master as his masterpiece but I do really enjoy the tone of Inherent Vice and Punch drunk love actually keepps getting better for me
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Tuesday, May 3. 2016 11:19 AM)
    There was a found footage horror film with a hunter s Thompson inspired character, had a lovecraftian element to, Banshee chapter, utter hokum/nonsense but in an interesting vein.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Tuesday, May 3. 2016 11:14 AM)
    Paul Thomas Anderson must be one heck of an director of actors though, given he actually managed to make good use of Adam Sandler…

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