Posted by psgels on 31 March 2012 with categories: Some Quick First Impressions

The Legend of Korra

Short Synopsis: Our lead character is the legendary chosen one.
Allright already! I give in; I’ll watch the first episode of this Avatar sequel. Normally I don’t cover American animation, but with this there were so many people requesting it. My impression is, that it’s indeed a pretty good series based on this first impression. The animation is really good: it is inspired by anime’s level of detail in its art, yet manages to retain the amount of fluidity that’s typical of American animation. There are some cliches in the cast of characters, like the spunky kid in the middle of a dignified Asian-inspired setting, which is quite common in these types of stories, and Korra herself definitely has her annoying moments. I am intrigued however by the politics in this series, although I have no idea what role the main character will end up playing in this. Everyone keeps talking about how she’s special as the avatar, but most of the problems that are presented in this episode don’t really seem like problems that can be solved by someone who just happens to be able to “bend” multiple elements.
ED: Very fast credits. Good music.
Potential: 80%

Ginga he Kickoff

Short Synopsis: Our lead character wants to found a football team.
Uh so yeah. Don’t ask me why, but we suddenly got treated to the fifth episode of Ginga he Kickoff. As for what happened to the first four… I have no idea. So I just watched the fifth episode of this series, and really, it’s fairly representative of the nature of this series. There were parts I enjoyed. The cast of side-characters is fairly nice. Better than Area no Kishi in any case. It just has one really, really big problem: the main character! Good lord, this kid is horrible. He keeps yelling and whining throughout the entire episode. In this episode he wants a certain person to become the coach of his football team, and do you know how he ends up doing it? By whining and whining and whining until the coach can’t take it anymore. Yes, the parents in the world will be thankful to this series.
OP: Very cheesy J-Pop
ED: Another dull song.
Potential: 10%

Natsuiro Kiseki

Short Synopsis: Our lead characters are a bunch of middle school girls.
Okay. I am intrigues. I’m definitely going to keep watching this series. I’m not going to say why; you just need to watch this episode for yourself. Instead I’m going to talk a bit about this episode in general. Natsuiro Kiseki was a series that I really feared would just become another copy and paste moeblob clone. However, the execution is different from your average series. There is actual tension between the characters, and not in the usual clown-straight man pairing, but it feels much more natural than usual. It still has its problems of being way too angsty. There is in particular a blond girl in this show who needs to lay off the angst, because she kept causing drama that could have been solved by proper communication. Despite that though, this series doesn’t feel random, but the characters are actually talking about something. Some characters are a tad cliched (the deadpan girl in particular), but others are actually pretty inspired (the green-haired girl in this show is actually an interesting variation on the “ditzy girl”-archetype).
OP: Dull J-rock.
ED: Dull J-pop (for those who are new to this blog: yes, I kindof dislike these genres)
Potential: 80%

25 Responses

  1. djrunn3r says:

    Wow, I’m surprised you actually did a first impressions on The Legend of Korra. Hopefully, it can live up to the lasting impact of the first series.

  2. Ebod says:

    YESSSSS, you watched Korra! The second episode’s out too, if you want to check it out. :P

    Anyways, yeah, the plot does seem interesting because from what I’ve seen from the trailers, Korra’s presence only seems to make the situation worse instead of better.

  3. Chan says:

    With Korra, her bending multiple elements isn’t what makes her capable of stopping problems, but rather its a signal that she HAS to. Its an Avatar’s duty to solve problems that humans get themselves into. Though keep watching when they talk about her past lives, you’ll get a better understanding of her duty.

  4. WatcherZero says:

    Yes essentially as the link between humans, the four elements and nature its the avatars job to bring peace and balance.

  5. Kim says:

    Oh wow you are blogging Korra, I totally approve. :)

    I recommend watching the first series too if you have the chance. It might seem a bit childish at first but it’s such a wonderful series with a well thought out world and great character development. I am hoping for more of the same with Korra.

    The main difference I am seeing is Korra is set in one city (although a very complex one) with the original Avatar taking place in multiple countries.

    And I also think Korra’s problems will get more serious as time goes on (especially with the non-bending faction). Just knowing all 4 elements and being a good fighter is not going to solve all her problems.

  6. Kiseki says:

    Natsuiro Kiseki is a science fiction fantasy, anyway.

    About Ginga: there was a pre-airing of episodes 1-5 in March on NHK BS Premium before it airs on whatever channel it was supposed to air on.

  7. Chiarissimo says:

    Asian-themed?

    This is New York. Even Aang’s statue is the Statue of Liberty…

    ” Everyone keeps talking about how she’s special as the avatar, but most of the problems that are presented in this episode don’t really seem like problems that can be solved by someone who just happens to be able to “bend” multiple elements.”
    >> Have you seen the original series?

  8. Kim says:

    There is nothing that says Korra’s world is NY or Aang’s statue is a representation of the statue of liberty (the statue is there because he is the founder of the city)

    The world of Korra is not based on one particular place but a mixture of many different places.

  9. daigo says:

    Omg Saint Seiya Omega was fantastic, i hope you enjoy it psgels.

    As a fan of the original Saint Seiya, Casshern Sins and Heartcath Precure.

    I cant be as happier right now.

    Also the opening is a remixed version of the original series, so much nostalgia.

  10. daigo says:

    Also recommen d you to wathc the original series, sure is 80´s shonen.

    Theres something in the soundtrack of SS, that puts it above dragon ball anime.

    Also the themes in greek mythology, are not common in Japan.

    The series has more succes in South America, Europe.

    it has cliches, but the themes make up for it.

    At least in the 80´s was original.

  11. Jeevas says:

    Yay, you watched it! :D

  12. blah says:

    Psgels watching an Avatar series?

    This pleases me.

  13. blah says:

    wait…

    this is definitely an april fools joke

  14. As quite a few other people have said, the Avatar is supposed to be a bridge between people and between people in the spirit world because of their status as essentially the incarnation of the planet’s spirit. So Korra’s special status really has less to do with the fact that she can bend all the elements (okay three currently) and more that she’s a special person who has these abilities amongst others.

    • Ars says:

      I see you enjoyed Korra enough to give it an 80% potential. My advice is to stop and take a crack at the first series before getting into the new one. First because it’s very good and second I feel this one would be more enjoyable after having experienced the first series.

    • Ars says:

      Whoops, placed that wrong. That was supposed to be a general reply to the thread.

  15. kagura says:

    I’m of the opinion that you should watch the first Avatar as well. It’s simply awesome and you definitely won’t be wasting your time. I’d really love to read your review of it someday.

  16. Denizen says:

    Interesting to see you’re taking a look at american animation. I like anime, but your opinions are interesting regardless of the medium, so if you felt like reviewing various things on this blog I would love to see that. Seeing your opinions on Live Action, whether it be Eastern of the likes of HBO, would be great.

    As for people telling you to check out the first season – honestly, don’t. It’s not bad in the slightest, and Korra seems to retain much of the style and wit of the original, but it’s a long series and I would say much more childish at the beginning, which can be a pain. Korra is definitely a more mature series in characterisation and setting, so i’d stick with it and only go back to the older series (which is worth a look) once Korra has finished its first season.

    As an anime enthusiast, what makes the Avatar series great is the expressive and fluid animation – unfortunately it can never reach the impressive technical skill of a good japanese sakuga specialist, despite its huge budget, but the choreography is still fantastic. A ton of thought and martial arts influence goes in to the way the characters move when they bend, taking from various schools and translating them into a sort of related theme for each element, which is probably the most impressive part of the show. That’s something to look out for.

    So far it hasn’t officially aired yet, so you may want to wait, but if you do decide to make a regular thing of blogging this show, that would be great.

    • djrunn3r says:

      Totally agree with you. The thing that made me love the first series was, in fact, the choreography. Such an amazing level of detail.

  17. JB says:

    What makes the Avatar series great in my mind is the writing. There was like a dozen people who wrote the first series, both male and female.

    The animation of the characters was okay, but the backgrounds lacked the detail that Japanese put in their anime.

  18. Stuff says:

    The avatar is actually the bridge between the spirit world and the human world. They’re essentially the spirit of the world, but in human form, and are tasked to maintain balance. What makes them special is not only being able to bend all four elements, but also have the ability to go to the spirit world (allows them to communicate with the spirits) , and tap into the avatar state (which is basically what makes the avatar such a fighting force).

  19. Tanz says:

    Hearing you blog Legend of Korra was the best thing I’ve ever heard from you.

  20. cookie.thief says:

    Will you continue to blog about Korra in the future? I’d love to hear your thoughts as the episodes are released!! :D

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  • Vincent
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 01:34 AM)
    @Bam Yeah, while you’re at it, tell that to the Huron amd Iroquois and see how much they feared guns and cannons.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 01:34 AM)
    @Vincent: No simply not true. The thing about what-if scenarios are that they are exercises in futility. Nobody can correctly predict the ramifications of giving the natives modern technology in the 16th century.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 01:32 AM)
    @Vincent: go read the native accounts of the fall of Teocalli to see the devastating military effects as well as the psychological ones the canons had in the native/Spanish conflicts.
  • Vincent
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 01:31 AM)
    Weapons were part of their defeat, but even if the Incas had semi-automatic bolt action rifles they still would’ve fallen apart because of the politics.
  • Vincent
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 01:30 AM)
    @Bam Exactly. The politics and strategy were far more important. The weapons came last.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 01:26 AM)
    The Inca’s lack of cooperation with their neighboring tribes, as well as their own affiliates, shows a lack of tactical sophistication which when combined with lack of modern medicine and weaponry amidst a economic, political and environmental upheaval led to their defeat by the hands of the conquistadors.
  • Vincent
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 01:25 AM)
    @Bam Of course they’re part of it. They held weapons, so weapons were part of the war; no one argues that. But you are grossly overestimating their importance.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 01:20 AM)
    You can use all kinds of acrobats to argue invalidly that weapons don’t matter in a war, at the end of the day that is simply not true. There is no single factor for their defeat but a multitude of different aspects, and advance weapons were one of them.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 01:18 AM)
    @Vincent: “in a battle” and that’s your mistake right there. One battle does not determine the grand scale of the ethnic cleansing that took place in the region.
  • Vincent
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 01:00 AM)
    In a battle that was depicted in Spanish records as a Spanish cavalry charge defeating a massive invasion force of Incas, Archeologists uncovered the battlegrounds and forensic scientists found that most of the Inca soldiers were killed not with sharp weapons that the Spanish used, but rather with the blunt weapons of the Indians.

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