Thu 3 Jul 2008
Since the first comment on the previous primer was one requesting a review of the first episode from someone who knows the series (presumably unlike, say, our friend psgels over at Star Crossed, who had mixed feelings about the first episode. At least he did enjoy our main characters after they got warmed up, I was worried he’d be turned off by their silliness) I feel more than obligated to oblige.
So, here it is. Episode 1 of Slayers Revolution from a fan perspective.
To put it mildly, I have never been happier watching a first episode of anime in my life. I was smiling the whole way through, smiling so much it hurt.
Ya know who is more badass than Captain Jack Sparrow?
Lina Mothafuckin’ Inverse, that’s who.
The first episode of Slayers Revolution was fairly standard for a Slayers first episode. In fact, it shared a bit in common with all three of the first episodes. It begins with Lina kicking the ass of Bandits (or in this case, pirates) like at the beginning of the first season, the big final challenge was a Tank similar to the giant Golem at the beginning of Next, and a good portion of the action took place at sea like the beginning of Try. The sense of humor is just as great as it has always been. It even ends with a Dragon Slave, something no first episode of Slayers should be without. However, it still stood out for several reasons.
First and foremost is the animation. HOLY. CRAP. Admittedly, Slayers was pretty low budget at first and it’s 13 years old, but the stark contrast between the fluidity and appearance of the old and the new is just baffling. It’s more than just time; having an actual budget behind it has really allowed this series to shine. Everything just MOVES in Revolution in ways I’m not used to Slayers moving.
I’m also glad, though, that they haven’t tried to modernize the designs. While they do look slightly different, they still are going for the same hand-drawn feel from the originals, and it is working well for the most part.
Second is what it was working to set up. The first episode of Next and Try both introduced the recurring anime-only character, but the feel of this episode was establishing not just one character, but rather THREE. Wizer, the chief inspector, looks to be a Zenigata-type character, chasing Lina to the ends of the earth. Kuppy, the “Mermaid,” feels so far like a potential running gag on damsels in distress. Those two are being relegated a joke status similar to part of Martina’s character in Slayers Next.
And then there’s this thing, named Pokota.
Looks like a Terriermon. Decimates cities like a Lina.
As I said, Revolution episode 1 ends with a Dragon Slave. However, instead of it being Lina to cast the spell… it’s this little bugger up there. I’m hoping there’s a reason for him appearing out of nowhere to level the city, but this little guy looks like he’s gonna be pretty damn important.
I also gotta say, I like his attitude. It’s neat to see a character design usually reserved for cute and cuddly seizure monsters and see it being given a sarcastic, angry wiseass face. He’s even voiced by freaking BLACK STAR of Soul Eater.
Finally, before going into questions I have, I’d like to say just one thing.
Gourry’s Broken Sword Running Gag…
Is freaking awesome.
Seriously, two times in a single episode, his sword breaks, and he tries to repair it hastily and on the spot. It’s silly and out of nowhere, but it’s perfect for the Slayers atmosphere. I really hope he keeps it up until he gets a replacement for the Sword of Light. It’s a wonderful little gag.
Broken Sword Count: 2.
Anyway, time for me to raise some questions and thoughts based on the Opening and Closing themes (which are both awesome, by the way.)
I’m used to weird symbols in my Slayers openings, but never CG, never color, and never this. Do I smell important MacGuffin? I think I do.
Featuring prominently in the opening is this Eclipse, seen superimposed over Lina. Second sun symbol in the Opening. Looks vaguely similar to the form of the Lord of Nightmares given in the Next Opening. The Sun is definitely going to play into this story.
Who are these three? Our seasonal Villains? Weird.
Only one question really surrounds Pokota. How is it possible that such a little twerp could seem so cool on first impression?!
Fucking Ninja, moves too fast to get a good Screenshot OHSHIT ZUUMA HAS ESCAPED THE SLAYERS NOVELS.
(Zuuma was an Assassin in Novel 4, and one of the only Normals able to really hold his own against the Slayers crew. He was confirmed to be in Revolution, and he’s big enough to make it to the opening credits as a Gourry rival. Awesome. Not only do they get to beat up Pirates, but a NINJA as well!)
Rumors had held that Xelloss’ true Mazoku form was that cone thing you see superimposed there, having been seen previously in Try. Word of God Confirmation?
THAT IS NOT THE SWORD OF LIGHT. WHAT IS THAT LIGHT SABER THING.
O hai, Mazoku Lord Chart. Thank you for being the first image in the Closing theme and reminding us that Gaav and Fibrizo are dead. Does that mean Dynast, Dolphin and Zelas are important this season?
Alright, that’s all I have right now. We’ll see where this season goes. *Is happy.*