I Tokmoh, therefore I am

April 25, 2008

[Anime] Soul Eater – first impression

Filed under: Opinion,Otakuism — tokmoh @ 6:08 am
Tags: ,

Genres: action, adventure, comedy, supernatural
Plot Summary: Set in the Shinigami technical school for weapon meisters, the series revolves around 3 groups of each a weapon meister and a human weapon. Trying to make the latter a “Death Scythe” and thus fit for use by the Shinigami, they must collect the souls of 99 evil humans and 1 witch.
I have to admit, I’ve been slow with picking up new series since autumn 2007’s season, heck, I have yet to pick up any new series at all and just kept watching Gintama!! That means I’ve missed Shakugan no Shana II (which from what I heard was worse than the 1st season), Gundam 00 (hm…was never a fan of mecha except Tengen Toppa Gurren-Lagann), Zuko Sayonara Zetsubo Sensei (Hardly heard or read any review about it, hopefully it was as good as the 1st season), Dragonaut (heard it suXx terribly despite having great cast lineup including Aya Hirano), Bamboo Blade, Myself;Yourself, Clannad, H2O ~Footprints in the Sand~, True Tears, and some other probably underrated series.
But right now, spring 2008 has promised a few very, very interesting series. Soul Eater, Allison & Lillia, The Tower of Druaga ~the Aegis of URUK~, Kyouran Kazoku Nikki, and some other probably underrated series (again). For the past series as stated above, well, I’ll catch up with them later, but for now, I’ve started with Soul Eater, and here I go!!

By just looking at that image, I swore the first thing that came to my mind was “D.Gray-Man!!” (which have been criticised as a Bleach + FMA clone) Certain screenshots indicate that this story is set around Great Britain during the Victorian era, which is quite similar to D.Gray-man. It even has a reference to Jack the Ripper in the first episode. The location of the shinigami school is unknown, much like the Black Order’s (D.Gray-man) headquarters. Instead of Innocence (or zampakuto in Bleach), they have……weapons. Which can turn into human mode as well (they can even experience nose bleed). The weapons need to collect 99 souls of evil human and 1 soul of witch to become a shinigami’s death scythe (like…sealing reiatsu to the zampakuto in Bleach, perhaps? But with a more specific requirement.) with their meisters ie technician (they create the weapon, and they wield it until the weapons are qualified to become a proper death scythe).

After watching the first two episodes by Rumbel-subs, I can say that it also reminds me of FLCL. That hyperactive wackiness is definitely there, but with a much more vibrant colour and contrast, which could be attributed to its High-Definition (each episode is easily 340++MB, twice the size of a normal episode) format, so the picture is very crisp and sharp. One of the three main meister characters, Maka, even sound like Mamimi (FLCL), although her seiyuu, Chiaki Omigawa is making her debut career in this series.

After 2 episodes, Soul Eater certainly leaves me with a bad feeling. It borderlines being a shonen and seinen because of a heavy amount of ecchi by shonen’s standard, but would’ve been considered too light and too little violent by seinen’s standard. As for the comedy, the Shinigami (who’s acting like the principal of the shinigami school) reminisces of a lamer Sasuke (Ninin Ga Shinobuden). But the biggest problem with the series is the cast. Chiaki Omigawa is too noob to voice a main character, the others meanwhile are too average, it’s so frustrating, that I feel like I can choose a better cast for the characters they voiced!!

Such a pity, the animation quality during fighting is worthy of being called awesome, and just look at the colours!! And it’s being let down by dull seiyuu, and rather lame, half-assed jokes. I guess this is the effect of watching Gintama only for the past more than 6 months, most other jokes in any other series would look like they’re made by 2-year-olds (except for Seto no Hanayome and Ninin Ga Shinobuden). Some may say that this series is not primarily comedy, but it’s about the action and adventure for the weapons to become death scythe, but when the seiyuu are mostly too annoying to listen to, I start to experience deja vu like I did with Dragonball, Bleach, One Piece and D.Gray-man: the retarded over-hyped Shonen syndrome.

There’s 51 episodes to be aired as announced, so I’ll need a few more episodes to really confirm whether it’ll be a hit or miss series. Coming from the same studio which made Full Metal Alchemist, Studio Bones have a lot of homeworks to do to ensure this is a series to remember just like FMA. Else, it might be forgotten like Hayate no Gotoku: a promising comedy which became stale before it reaches mid-point.

Sauce

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14 Comments »

  1. goodness. there are a few other nice titles this year. you could go to bleachexile.com and check out the new releases there.

    cant catch up with all la.

    Comment by kevin — April 25, 2008 @ 5:08 pm | Reply

  2. when i read ur blog i quickly download this anime and try it and you know what, this anime is really awesome!!! might be next best anime after bleach…

    Comment by Azuan — April 28, 2008 @ 5:33 pm | Reply

  3. Kevin: Yea, though the problem is it takes ages to download. I also tried streaming it online, but it’s also slow. Grrr……and I hate it everytime my friend in UK boasted about taking only 3 minutes to download an episode, biatch uni’s server. Even snailmyx is faster but still……

    I yearn the day broadband in M’sia is truly 100MB/s.

    Azuan: Bleach the best anime? Err……forgive me, yes, Bleach was good up until the end of Soul Society arc, and then it went sheez. I have watched enough anime series to classify Bleach as “disappointing”. There are just too few shounen anime which are good to me, and they all have a different story than about “Imm@ g0nN@ b3 1337est n1nj@/sh1n1g@m1/p1r@t3/3x0rC15t 3v@r, & pWn j0o n00bZzoRz!” Just probably, the only one series that has this kinda story but is very cool and great is Tengen Toppa Gurren-Lagann.

    Anyway, as I admit, it is still too early to judge Soul Eater with just 2 episodes, I’m gonna give it at least 15 episodes before I decide Soul Eater’s gonna be a hit-or-miss series. Cuz I definitely don’t want it to be classified as “just another lame shounen series.”

    Comment by tokmoh — April 28, 2008 @ 11:38 pm | Reply

  4. tokmoh : its truly 100kbps. my house dls hit 180kbps.

    azuan : yea bleach was nice till ichigo got his bankai.

    here are some great animes: FULL METAL ALCHEMIST, NEON GENESIS EVANGELION, RUROUNIN KENSHIN (SAMURAI X), DEATH NOTE, SHAMAN KING.

    Comment by kevin — April 29, 2008 @ 8:07 pm | Reply

  5. Ehh…..so nice…u use Streamyx or Jaring? Or Maxis broadband?

    At home, sometimes I can achieve 100kbps, but at odd hours of the day. Else, I can achieve 20-30kbps

    Death Note aa……hated the ending!! Dam tiring to read the manga, and thought it was nice up until L died, only to see in the end Kira got pwned with “Yes, I know ur every thought, I am more 1337 than L tau, I got psychic u noe, dun pray-pray with me ah, heeeh……j0o got PWNED, N00bZzo0rRz!!!” Near. What a waste.

    The rest of the titles are great 🙂 My all-time top 3 epic animes would be:

    1. Tengen Toppa Gurren-Lagann.
    2. Last Exile
    3. Gintama

    Comment by tokmoh — April 29, 2008 @ 10:41 pm | Reply

  6. I can definitely say (if you haven’t caught it already) that you should definitely watch Denno Coil!

    Now back to the actual topic. I’m in the middle of watching the first few episodes of this Soul Eater series, and boy, they got it *so * so *sooo wrong in the seiyuu department! I’ve been reading a few forum threads that allow for this Chiaki seiyuu being new to the industry, but seriously, for such a long-running anime, they *really* *really* need a strong seiyuu (and there’s not a lack of them!) for this main role!

    I’m sure most seiyuus work their way up from smaller characters, but throwing her into such a major role is just slapping the anime into the bargain bin. One wonders how she got the role in the first place! I’m almost tempted to hit *mute* during the fight scene, because her voice completely puts me off the actual HD fight. It’s bad enough that it’s too nasal for the character, but it’s pretty much like me trying my hand at voice acting i.e. *very* bad idea! Did they just pick her off the street?

    Maybe I shouldn’t be this harsh? But having watched some excellent anime series recently, where characters were brought to life by their seiyuus, one can’t help but feel bitter disappointment at something that looked so promising. Given a choice, I’d offer Chiaki a smaller role, and go spend some of that HD animation budget on a good female seiyuu. It will do the series (all 51 episodes) a world of difference.

    p/s: A good example is Gintama! The voice actors – *thumbsup*!
    p/s2: Yes, I thought D.Gray-man too.
    p/s3: Denno Coil would definitely be in my top 3 epic anime. Consistently good throughout. Another would be Aria (the first two series at the very least)

    Comment by flick — May 31, 2008 @ 10:47 am | Reply

  7. p/s4: I should add that it also helps that Death the Kid was Tamaki Suou in Ouran 😉 And another redeeming feature is that “Houko Kuwashima” will be starring as well.

    Comment by flick — May 31, 2008 @ 11:00 am | Reply

  8. Hello there Flick!! Welcome to my blog 🙂

    Agreed that Soul Eater got it wrong with the seiyuu. I feel that Soul Eater might be able to break record as the first series which the English dub will be better than the original. It’s not just Maka, Soul also sounds too try hard to sound cool, but I think it’ll be easier to just get Tomokazu Sugita (Kyon in Suzumiya Haruhi, Gintoki in Gintama) to voice him instead if a deep voice is what they want.

    Death the Kid is probably the only voice in Soul Eater that doesn’t annoy me, Mamoru Miyano also voiced Yagami Light 😉 Unfortunately, his CHARACTER that’s annoying with the obsession for everything to be symmetrical and yet, he himself isn’t symmetrical with that white stripes on the left side of his hair.

    I kinda like D.Gray-Man a lot when it first came out, but now it’s kinda meh… Lenalee-chan kawaii though ^_^!!

    Thanks for recommending Denno Coil! Will definitely check it out soon 😉

    Comment by tokmoh — June 8, 2008 @ 1:05 am | Reply

  9. I think that all of you are pretty stupid. First off I think that Chiaki has a really interesting voice and is well suited for the role, those naysayers what do you want? For her to sound like ever other voice actor out there?I think she gives a flair to the character and I actually love listing to her voice.

    As far as souls voice if you knew anything about playing to the character HE IS SUPPOSED TO SOUND LIKE HE IS TRYING TO HARD TO BE COOL,thats the character. I think that your just all being elitist otaku and you’ll never be satisfied with any change if it isn’t what you want, newsflash nobody cares what you think.

    Comment by WTF — June 13, 2008 @ 1:05 pm | Reply

  10. WTF: I think you’re a Narutard AND Bleachtard.

    My take on anime is just like my take on cars and food: there are good and bad anime/car/food. The good ones deserve honor, the bad ones should just be forgotten.

    I heard ep11 is very good, so there’s a chance that Soul Eater CAN redeem what it lost in the first 5 episodes.

    Comment by tokmoh — June 24, 2008 @ 12:14 am | Reply

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    Comment by Marc Shaw — October 16, 2009 @ 5:06 am | Reply

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    Comment by black hattitude — October 19, 2009 @ 4:10 pm | Reply


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