Autumn 2013: First Impressions – Nagi no Asukara & Strike the Blood
Nagi no Asukara
It has to be said that the world setting for Nagi no Asukara is pretty interesting. I loved the whole under the sea village thing, and quite a lot of attention has been paid to creating a whole culture complete with religion – I can appreciate that thought has been put into this setting. It is a pity that they didn’t differentiate the under sea character designs a bit more – having the characters sparkle like rejects from Twilight doesn’t really cut it when PA Works character designs normally look like they’ve been polished anyway.
The set-up of having a bunch of kids from under the sea join a surface school and the resulting spate of racist bullying was handled better than I thought, but the drama was rather forced and I ended up laughing at the show more than was intended. There is comedy (good god, farting fish knee!) and it is done well, but I don’t think comedy is going to be the primary focus given this is Mari Okada & PA Works. Has to be said that I did not like the characters – the lead male is a huge tsundere, with an empathis on the tsun, he comes across as a massive arsehole the majority of the time. The main girl is just a mass of moe blobbiness and has no discernible personality (but since she had the farting fish knee I’ll let her off), and they are clearly setting the rest of the cast up to be a love polygon……yay.
So yeah, cool setting with irritating characters – I’ll give it another few episodes at least and will probably end up watching it all knowing me, however unless the characters improve dramatically and I can’t see Nagi no Asukara making my favourites list.
Strike the Blood
Well that was generic as feck. I was getting Index & Shana flashbacks repeatedly to the extent I had to double check this wasn’t JC Staff! But no, this is Silver Link/Connect and completely lacks the SHAFT-lite visual flair that usually makes Silver Link shows at least visually interesting. Strike the Blood is run of the mill to a fault, nothing about the show really stands out and even though I’ve just finished watching it not much is sticking with me apart from that one fella who summoned a horse made of pink fire. And the terrible forced fanservice thanks to the repeated flipping of the girls skirt. Yeah.
The characters aren’t even all that interesting – we’re told that the lead fella is some sort of super vampire whose very existence is classed as a potential war, but he is just the same bland male lead you’ve seem a million times before. The girl is yet another Shana clone – basic tsundere with decent fighting abilities who randomly latches onto the bland lead male.
I’ve seen this same series too many times before so I’ll be dropping Strike the Blood, however it isn’t offensively bad or anything, just pretty unremarkable with fairly low production values. There are better things to watch this season.