Guilty Crown 01-02: Void

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The Fall season’s most anticipated series finally gets the review treatment here, and what better way to start things off than to not highlight the main female protagonist in the introductory image. Why? Because I think Tsugumi just proved herself to be far superior than damsel-in-distress Inori in both usefulness and overall character introduction. Sorry Inori, but your last-minute class transfer better work wonders next week.

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Luckily, my opinions of this show can be based off a casual viewer’s perspective who’s watched his or her fair share of anime to sense the borrowed elements of this title. Let’s just start by mixing Macross Frontier robot battles with elements of Harry Potter cloaking, Evangelion weapons systems, Minority Report styled control and communication systems, Equilibrium societal oppression, and pretty pink-haired heroines. Combine all of that with a boy’s mysterious ability to pull giant DNA weapons out of his right arm using a proxy and you’ve got yourself a fantastically drawn, well-orchestrated anime for the Fall 2011 season. I kid you not, the visuals of this show are rather impressive; it only makes me wonder how many filler episodes with sub-par animation quality we’ll get over the next few weeks until we start seeing episodes as good as the first and second one.

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Storywise? Let’s keep things simple and brief: Japan’s got it rough for being oppressed by GHQ, an organization that has been ridding society of ‘infected’ folks due to an unknown virus epidemic ten years prior. An underground group called ‘Undertaker’ wants nothing but to bring GHQ down and salvage the society that has been under their strong grip. Throw in some mecha and awesome displays of alchemy via Inori and Ouma’s teamwork and you have yourself a fine, if not over-generalized, action sci-fi series with attractively drawn females and GAR males. Oh, and did I mention that (ryo) Supercell is heading up most of the key musical pieces of the show? I’m almost waiting for Hatsune Miku to jump out from the rubble and start deculture-ing the entire GHQ organization. Better yet, let’s just have Inori cosplay as Luka and we’ll be set.

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First Impression Rating: 8.5/10. Great buildup to the final scenes of the second episode, only to find out that Ouma went against typical shounen standards and rejected his membership into Undertaker. Eyebrows raised for Inori transferring into his same class; stalker status much, anyone? Although episode one naturally had a slow buildup, episode two took the action a few logical steps up in intensity and rightfully slammed us back down to the reality of day-to-day school rumblings. I like the heavier suspense of this show so please, not too much school angst. I’d rather watch Honey & Clover all over again than see those elements in here with the pace of the revealing of the world they all live in rolling out nice and neatly.

Likelihood to Blog: 10/10. I genuinely find this show good material to blog about for the action that it has and the sense of mystery in figuring out all of the inner-workings of this futuristic world not too far into the future from our own. Will we be able to manifest classified DNA into powerful hand-held weapons capable of striking justice onto the world with one swift blow in an effort to keep the world’s antagonists at bay, all while managing to keep up with our homework and after-school club activities? I’m not sure; let’s just ask our children’s children when the time comes. Perhaps the things that Inori wears may not seem so scandalous 30-40 years from now.

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