Posted by psgels on 10 January 2011 with categories: Black Lagoon - Roberta's Blood Trail, OVA Impressions




The contrast with the previous episode couldn’t be bigger here. Where that one was mostly focused on building up and dialogue, this was was nearly entirely focused on the action part. The first half of the episode showed different skirmishes between all of the different fractions that happened to come together. The second half. Oh boy. Talk about nightmare fuel.

There are still two episodes left, so the combat in the first half was only just the tip of the iceberg of the things that are about to happen. They were quite well written, though: every fraction had its own way of combat and the different skirmishes were quite varied throughout the episode. At the same time, there were also a few great dialogues, like the one between Rock and Chang, and Revy and Fabiola.

In the second half meanwhile, Garcia runs into Roberta. This scene takes up around ten minutes in total, and it was relentless in the incredibly slow way in which it unfolded itself and where Roberta’s demented acts completely destroyed the image Garcia had of her. It was really disturbing, and just shows how completely drugged up Roberta must be at this point. That cliff-hanger especially is a really nasty one to have to wait for another two months.

On a side-note: this episode also featured foreign languages, but instead of voicing them over in that very confusing way like they did in the second season, this episode instead simply subtitles them. Works much better.

Also, I’m not sure if I’ve said this before, but I quite like the OP and ED of Roberta’s Blood Trail. Especially the ED: there is something wonderfully ironic to have such a semi-upbeat tune after all the depressing stuff and for once it doesn’t feel out of place unlike a ton of other dark shows that have bright EDs (I’m looking at you, Uragiri…). I just wonder why they showed so much of Balalaika, because she doesn’t really have that big of a part in this arc of the story.
OVA Episode Rating: 8,5/10

8 Responses

  1. Lock says:

    Unreal. Totally unreal. The second half was the most messed up thing I’ve seen in anime.

    On another note, I find it extremely difficult to drum up any sympathy for the FARC terrorist that Revy executed with a triple tap, knowing what that organization has been responsible for. I cheered on Revy as she shot that man dead.

    And on yet another note, this episode showed us that while Roberta is absurdly strong, she’s not invincible, and a smart opponent can still take her down. I wonder if this is going to lead up to something.

    Also: I was very impressed by the sound of the silenced submachine guns. That’s what it really sounds like.

  2. RollingCamel says:

    No one subbing this?

  3. Ncrdrg says:

    umee subbed the first two. Expect them to do it again.

  4. Troyen says:

    Given the history of “When Johnny Comes Marching Home” (famous American Civil War song about returning home from war), I figured it was picked for symbolic reasons. But yeah, I really like the OP/ED too.

    Also, they didn’t really end with a big cliffhanger…?

  5. Zetatrain says:

    yeah, at the end the soldier said they secured a boy so we know Garcia is alive and he’s even in the preview for the next episode.

  6. RollingCamel says:

    The gore level was just ridiculous in a bad way. It is unbelievable how strong Roberta is, smashing the guys head with bare hands and swinging his body like a dummy was stupid.

    Smashing the head with a metal….I have no problem with this type of gore…I guess that is messed up too.

    • RollingHills says:

      She was insane and hopped up on drugs so its not totally implausible. Also those guys she was crushing are in rpg terms mooks so for all intents and purposes, they’re canon fodder whereas Roberta is a named character and if anyone has been paying to fiction, we all know what happens when named characters face off against non-named characters.

      So its understandable.

  7. Kaza says:

    I just finishied watching the 24 ep. series…then I get my hands on these…just wonderful.

    there really should be more anime like B.L. [which remembers me a little of trigun and cowboy bebop, but with more gore and more criminals than bounty hunters, not to say the darker scenario]

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  • AidanAK47
    (Thursday, Nov 27. 2014 04:58 PM)
    @Bam, Extra Credits made a video praising Dark souls 2’s difficultly system. Never have I disagreed with them more.
    @Ninja, I read the beginning chapters of Love Tyrant but it was just too slapstick for my taste.
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Nov 27. 2014 12:52 PM)
    @Realist: I also noticed in that story arc with the talking cats, it mentioned cats of ulthar, which was also mentioned in a HP Lovecraft story.
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Nov 27. 2014 12:20 PM)
    We have reached the moment of truth and what we waited for in space brothers manga. The next chapters cannot come fast enough.
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Nov 27. 2014 12:16 PM)
    @Realist: Like that skull head guy a bit.
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Nov 27. 2014 12:15 PM)
    Apparently in bloodbourne they are upping the violence…I think.
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Nov 27. 2014 12:13 PM)
    @Bam: Scott Snyder at least…is one of them.
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Nov 27. 2014 12:11 PM)
    @Realist: I read that mahou tsukai no yome manga you mentioned, the two available volumes. After a few chapters I started getting more into it, but I’ll need more time/updates, looks like its doing a decent enough job setting up a fairly readable plot.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Nov 27. 2014 12:10 PM)
    @Emma: also isn’t American Vampire written by two guys?
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Nov 27. 2014 12:10 PM)
    @Emma: not only Amira but also Kaiser and Favaro’s dialogue and characterization was pretty weak. Their feud and reconciliation was forced as he’ll, and I just hate it when powerful demons uncharacteristically waste too much time talking to humans they could, and should, easily defeat.
  • Bam
    (Thursday, Nov 27. 2014 12:07 PM)
    @k-off: the series has some sombre and unconventional stories, it’s just that the story is told indirectly thru lore and subtlety. Demon’s Souls had a decent amount of narrative to the whole affair, albeit short and told mostly thru items and NPC encounters. But unfortunately the series moved forward on from cryptic to straight minimal storytelling. DS2 feels lazy although it has a few cool narratives, like Luciatel, but you have to play your cards right to even get to see that.

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