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First Impressions: Summer 2014 – Persona 4: The Golden Animation, Psycho-Pass: Extended Edition and Tokyo ESP

July 13, 2014

summerbanNext up is a re-make, a re-edit/re-airing and an esper war - Persona 4: The Golden Animation, Psycho-Pass: Extended Edition and Tokyo ESP.

Persona 4: The Golden Animation

Okay so this is basically a remake with a few tweaks – I haven’t played the game, but apparently this new series will be pursuing a few of the alternate routes available in replays.  Most noticeable difference is the presence of a new character – the oh so stereotypically tsundere Marie, and the slight difference in out main character’s personality.  In this version Yu is much more confident, outspoken and massively overpowered when he first activates his persona.

The other major thing of note is that this first episode had absolutely no sense of flow and felt more like a bunch of cut scenes strung together with little regard for pacing or building a coherent story.  I’ve sat through one series of Persona 4 and don’t really want to do so again – much as the setting and general idea of the series interests me, I think I’d be better off playing the game instead of watching this messy version of the story.  Dropped.

Psycho-Pass: Extended Edition

So this was more or less a straight re-airing of the first episode, just re-cut to run for 40 mins.

It is nice to be able to rewatch Psycho-Pass in decent quality, I had to watch the show when it was airing in terrible streaming quality on a tiny netbook screen thanks to being away on my travels at the time.

If you haven’t seen the show yet this is a brilliant opportunity to do so, even though this re-edit is going to be half the length as the second series is starting next season, it should be a sufficient taster for the show, and will provide a great refresher for those of us who have already seen the first series.

Tokyo ESP

I don’t know why, but I thought this show was going to be comedy, so the first episode of Tokyo ESP kinda of threw me since it takes a fairly serious tone for the most part.  I was also pretty surprised to find it is set in the same universe as Ga-Rei Zero and characters from that show even cameo in this episode (also somewhat amused to see that the doomed team in orange from the first episode of Ga-Rei Zero are also present here).  Other than being slightly surprised by the tone and universe, the rest of the episode was basically your standard conflict set-up with espers being the terrorists threatening the everyday lives of the people.

I do think that the Us Vs Them thing could have been set up with a bit more subtlety – the terrorist espers are way too cartoonish in their villianry (especially that lunatic woman who delighted in mocking a small child crying for her trapped mother).  The espers probably do have a valid reason for rebelling, they seem to be feared and discriminated against in normal society, but there is no real explanation given and it just seems like a bunch of psychopaths picking on poor innocent civilians.  Of course there are espers on the ‘good side’ too, but our main character ‘The White Girl’ (who seems to be treated like some sort of superhero) only shows up at the last moment so god knows what she’s going to be like.

There is potential here, but there really needs to be work done on the writing to make the show stand out.  Will be watching another few episodes to see where it is going – what Ga-Rei Zero taught me is that this author seems to to like abruptly changing track with little warning, so I doubt the first episode is really a representation of what the true nature of this series is.

 

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. July 13, 2014 12:37 am

    “I doubt the first episode is really a representation of what the true nature of this series is.”

    Hmmm… I was ready to drop Tokyo ESP, since it seemed to be a pretty standard battle anime – not my favorite genre. I suppose I should at least check out a second episode, to confirm.

    The only thing I really enjoyed about Persona4 the last time, were the OPs by Shihoko Hirata, so I’m not going to bother with the remake.

    Maybe I should take a second look at Psychopass. I think I was super busy that season and dropped it as a side-effect, not because I particularly disliked the show itself.

    • July 13, 2014 3:12 pm

      Yeah I’d probably recommend checking out Tokyo ESP’s 2nd ep just to see what they’re actually going for – really don’t think it will play out like this episode did.

      Remaking Persona 4 seems entirely pointless to me – does this franchise really sell well enough to justify this kind of milking?

      I would highly recommend Psycho-Pass, it has some really interesting ideas (and some pretty dumb ones) and Akane actually becomes a really decent female character by the end.

  2. July 13, 2014 8:49 am

    I’ve not read the Tokyo ESP manga myself, but know people who have, and the reaction has been largely one of confusion – apparently the cameos/crossovers are all anime-original, and the other events of the first episode don’t happen until later in the story. And I’m assured that it is indeed a comedy. I assume that now they’ve started with a bang and got our attention, they’ll ‘flash back’ to the actual beginning.

    • July 13, 2014 3:13 pm

      Yeah that sounds pretty much like people’s reaction to the first episode of Ga-Rei Zero which was also mostly anime original and a flashforward. I’m not usually this off with my initial impressions so the lack of (intentional) comedy threw me.

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