Posted on 27 June 2010 with categories: Black Lagoon - Roberta's Blood Trail




And so, after more than three years we finally get to see the continuation of Black Lagoon, and the creators decided to put the focus back on fan favourite Roberta. Personally, I loved that first season. The second season was a bit less, since I found that it lost sight of its big picture, but to be honest, I did have some strange biases back then. As an action-series, it still delivered like hell.

In any case, the third season starts off really well with a clear attempt to give more depth to Roberta, while also going for the most action-packed scenario possible. The real challenge for the creators is to balance them out well: deliver the solid action while at the same time not forgetting that they’re supposed to tell a story and fleshing out a character.

You can see that this really is an OVA for the fans. While this definitely had its own story, it also contains a ton of homages to the first seasons. There’s the obvious as Roberta, but here the creators introduced another maid with awesome fighting skills. And seriously: how many times has that pub been destroyed by now? It’s like there’s some sort of curse on it. And I wonder how the owner manages to fix it up every time again.

What impressed me a lot here was the animation. You can really see that Madhouse paid a lot of attention to it. The character-models may not be the most crisp here, but I hardly spotted any still frames. There really is a ton of movement, along with a large number of creative poses and camera angles that at the same time don’t try to overdo it. The action itself was also really well animated and coordinated.

overall though, an excellent start. I’m not yet sure whether the story will work out, but at least we’re certain of one hell of an action-packed OVA. This episode provided enough hints for that. But hey, there actually was quite a bit of build-up in this episode, so we might indeed be in for something awesome here.
Rating: ** (Excellent)
OP: A remix of the first OP. Again, part of playing to the fans of the series.
ED: Clever. You start with the first notes of the first ED, only to turn to something completely different. works really well.

Oh, and on a side-note: I’m glad that Dutch and Bennie seem to be playing a bigger role again

7 Responses

  1. anonymous says:

    It’s not that they decided to focus on Roberta, it’s just after all the story arcs of season 1 and 2, there is a huge story arc involving Roberta’s revenge that probably going to take all or most of third season. After that it’s a tech one, involving that counterfeiting girl you saw in season 2.

  2. anonymous says:

    I am just saying…they didn’t have much choice, it’s either the completed roberta arc, or the ongoing tech arc (which is kinda stalled).

  3. Kane says:

    I’m waiting for subs, but I wanna know if Roberta’s voice actress is still the same, since I heard she was retired (even when she played Roberta in Black Lagoon season 1, she was already retired at that time).

  4. Shockerz says:

    Oh yes! The animation is definitely executed well but I feel that the voice actors have been replaced . Although, I did watched the first OVA 1 but I can’t get what’s happening since my command of Japanese is poor.

    When will the sub be coming out? I hope it will be soon.

  5. Michael says:

    Just watched the sub. I liked it. But I have to say, I’m worried.

    SPOILERS FROM SEASON 2 OF BLACK LAGOON.

    The moral questions of Black Lagoon ended brilliantly at the end of season 2, seemingly arguing that there is no “twilight” in this world, and that Rock inevitably had to fall into the darkness of Roanapour. The last lines of season 2 were Rock and Benny saying that they still lived in the “twilight,” but them acting callous and at peace with the situation and going to see some “messed up stuff” in Roanapour. This suggests to me that their rhetoric didn’t match reality. They had fallen into the darkness, but didn’t notice it.

    With this new season, it seems like the frightened Rock of season 1 is back, as opposed to the changed, callous, and hardened Rock at the end of season 2. I’m very much bothered by this incongruity with character development.

    Now, I’m withholding judgment, because we didn’t see much of Rock in this episode, and I haven’t read the manga, so I have no idea where this is going. But I am seriously worried they turned away from the dark, brilliant ending of season 2 and pretended like it never happened.

  6. Rockmanshii says:

    @Micheal:I don’t think they will totally “erase” what happened back then, or else it would have been meaningless to show us how he keeps that photo in his wallet and all.I guess it’s just to show us that he’s down for now and a little depresseed because of it, I havn’t read the manga but I’m sure he’s still
    the same as the end of season 2.

    We have to wait and see now.

  7. Lauren says:

    there is going to be a lot of greatness in Roberta’s Blood Trail. Personally I am pretty psyched to see the inevitable, epic round-2 between Revy and Roberta. :D It’s gotta end in a draw again.

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  • Friend
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 09:42 PM)
    I was iffy about the roomate and Kawaii, but those two are the most interesting characters.
  • ninjarealist
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 08:51 PM)
  • TheUltimateReaper
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 08:42 PM)
    @Friend, it’s kinda not especially great but I’ll admit I’m watching all the episodes
  • Kenjeran
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 08:37 PM)
    @Friend Eh, I think the comedy was forced & kinda badly executed (trying way too hard with the character’s quirks). I like it when they focus on the romance.
  • Friend
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 07:22 PM)
    Anyoneelse watching Kawaii Complex Guide to Manors? The first ep was pretty bad, but the jokes piick up and most of the characters are likeable.
  • Friend
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 07:02 PM)
    @Vincemt yup. To be honest, I didnt try much on this chapter. But I can promise that starting next week, the art’ll be more extravagant. I’m going to combine my drawings with CG enviornments to make my life easier X/
  • Vincent
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 06:42 PM)
    @Friend did you really only spend an hour on the entire page? It’d take me days to do that O.o
  • Vincent
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 06:40 PM)
    Thanks for the comic friend. It’s greatly entertaining, and it’ll be a great series to read in between animes.
  • Juno
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 03:40 PM)
    Literally, the tune started playing and I was like, “…I know this song… Where have I heard it before…?”
    And just as the vocals started, I was already singing it. XD
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 10:47 AM)
    Now this is very very good news to me, dark horse is releasing more of Satoshi Kon’s manga in the west, seraphim and opus, I’ll grab anything this guy has worked on. Definitely excited for this.

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