Posted by psgels on 29 October 2008 with categories: Kurozuka

Short Synopsis: Kurou remembers what happened to Kuromitsu, and the story takes an interesting turn.
Highlights: Matrix, anyone?
Overall Enjoyment Value: 7,5/10
I remember that during the winter-season, I was very annoyed with Madhouse for some strange reason. If I recall correctly, then apart from Mokke and Ooedo Rocket, every of their recent series at that time had some sort of annoyance that brought it down: Dennou Coil and especially Saiunkoku Monogatari had their endless amounts of hiatuses, Shigurui and especially Claymore had their disappointing endings, Death Note was unbalanced, Kaiji dragged on and Devil May Cry, Maple Story, Nougami Neuro, Kaibutsu Ojou were just badly written.

And here I am right now, seeing them continue to churn out hit after hit, for three consecutive seasons. Is this really the same Madhouse we’re talking about? I’m not sure what happened, perhaps some high-ranked official found it a good idea to put more emphasis on quality and originality, perhaps it’s just chance, and they’ve chosen a string of excellent series to animate (in a way, it’s like Gonzo’s string of excellent series from 2006 till Summer 2007). In any case, whatever it is, I really appreciate it, and I hope that this string of excellent series will last as long as possible.

This episode of Kurozuka again adds a whole new dimension to the series. We learn that when the screen turns funky, it’s not simply because of the visual effects, but at that time Kurou can also slow down time significantly. We also learn that Kuromitsu has been kidnapped by the strange enemies, but the end of the episode reveals that it was Karuta’s allies that took her away, making this not just a story of good vs evil anymore. It does make me wonder why they were walking around in enemy-suits, though. And why the heck the enemy’s after them, and why they needed Kuromitsu in the first place.

One problem that I have with the series is that it’s aired a bit too soon after Ultraviolet. I just can’t help but think that Kuromitsu and 044 are alike: their character-designs are so similar, and Paku Romi uses nearly the exact same voice for them. She’s going to have to be fleshed out a bit more if she really wants to stand apart from her Ultraviolet-counterpart, especially since their roles seem to be completely different. Ultraviolet was a strong-minded killer on the run, while Kuromitsu feels more like a damsel in distress (please don’t let her end up captured for the rest of the series).

5 Responses

  1. Kim says:

    You know I think Dennou Coil and Saiunkoku’s hiatus and recap issues had more to do with the fact they were both aired by the NHK than the fact that they were both produced by Madhouse.

  2. Lightbringer says:

    I highly doubt she’ll spend the season captured.

    I have a serious problem with this series. The character designs are nothing like the manga. What’s worse, they look very generic. The manga, while not being terribly interesting story-wise, had a very specific style, and it’s all lost here.

  3. psgels psgels says:

    Kim: true about the hiatuses, but the recaps as well? I can’t really see how a TV-station would force a recap down onto its series…

    Lightbringer: I’ve looked a bit at the cover-art of the manga, and I can see what you mean, the characters don’t look anything like those designs. Still, it should be something that one can get used to, shouldn’t it?

  4. Archer says:

    yeah the character design is indeed very different and one of the reasons why i finished the manga quite fast was because i found the art to be very good but i did get used to the anime version of the characters and i enjoy the anime quite a lot too

  5. smurph172 says:

    I’m bothered how they changed the story so much from the manga.

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  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Oct 6. 2015 08:57 PM)
    And that’s why Madhouse is one of the few respectable studios left. I thought that they will be seriously diminished after Masao Maruyama took some of its key members and funded MAPPA, but One-Punch Man showed that they are still one of the best in the business.
  • k-off
    (Tuesday, Oct 6. 2015 08:51 PM)
    @Kaiser The anime industry isn’t advanced enough in CG to make it look good, is all it is.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Tuesday, Oct 6. 2015 05:51 PM)
    @K-off: Your not wrong, it certainly looks poor but some of the old gonzo animated stuff was far more woeful looking. Stellvia, which was done by xebec was another example of old anime cgi which was quite ugly to look at. Just as I prefer traditional effects in film I also prefer traditional animation techniques to cg.
  • k-off
    (Tuesday, Oct 6. 2015 05:42 PM)
    Lately, the use of badly integrated cgi have been making my eyes sore,from the obviously cgi background characters in Asterisk to the overly fluid mech movements in Aldnoah. I still remember the shitty cgi piano hands in Kimi no Uso.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Oct 6. 2015 12:04 AM)
    On the note of good balance between humor and drama- I think BoJack Horseman is an example of a show that executed that almost perfectly in both seasons. You are laughing one minute and amused by the hijinks and silliness and the next minute you are actually moved and shocked by the honest introspection. Too be honest BoJack is more a tragic character then a goofy one, and his struggles are deeper and more existential than they have any business being in a show with anthropomorphic animals.
  • Bam
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 11:56 PM)
    The changes in the setting actually made me more excited for season 3 then what I felt the past few weeks, since now the plot needs to move forward from the cliffhanger and hopefully this translates to more cohesion and refocusing on what mad the show great in the first place. I’m pretty sure S3 will also be a blend of episodic and arch story elements tho. Overall a few ups and downs but still a great show.
  • Bam
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 11:52 PM)
    The finale also had some of the most overall arch story elements featured in the season. Earth joining the Galactic Federation is a big deal story-wise from now on. Also the use of a cover of Johnny Cash’s “Hurt” (not the Nine Inch Nails one clearly) was a nice fitting yet surprising touch. The throwback to Mr. PB after the credits was a good idea, but felt flat in it’s actual execution.
  • Bam
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 11:49 PM)
    I thought R&M had a pretty good finale. The episode achieved what was missing from most of season 2, and that was a balance of randomness and meaningful bits. What made Rick Potion #9 and the previous season’s finale and general tone great was a sense of humor that was combined with more sincere drama and character developments; a sort of sweet melancholy.
  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 09:51 PM)
    @K-off, not having too much trouble with the interface but I still cannot create categories.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 08:56 PM)
    Eh, I’ve updated myself now on the onepunch manga and also the manga for yuruyuri, I can cross the shows off my list now. I forgot to mention onepunchs first episode crammed in the first volume.
    I stopped reading though around chapter 30, it was decent fun for a bit but I’ll be continuing with it in small doses.

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