Kekkai Sensen Episode 1 [Initial Impression]

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PLOT:  One day, New York City as we know it vanished overnight into a mysterious fog. Now known as Hellusalem Road, it has become a place where another world beyond imagining is connected to our reality. The balance within this new world is protected by a secret society known as Libra. Leo, a journalist and photographer who arrives in the city, is unexpectedly recruited to join their ranks. {Taken from ANN}

Arslan SenkiPunchline and this are about the big three shows I’ve been anticipating this season.  I absolutely love Yasuhiro Nightow’s work on Trigun and here we get an interesting perspective of New York City where supernatural battles amongst humans and monsters have become commonplace.

Leonard Watch is somewhat of a freeloader or that’s how this episode pans him out to be.  I like his nature as he wants to help out whenever he can to make up for his misfortunes and actions.  This reflects a lot about the depth of his character quite well–  the situation with his ailing sister reflects this greatly in that he couldn’t help but freeze at that moment.  Klaus the leader of sets this series up for some fantastic creatures in this show with a solid backstory.  From what I can tell he’s been around the bin and seems to have studied his skills with the Master of the Brain Grid Blood style for quite some time.  He will be a great counterbalance to Zap’s hotblooded personality in this show.  Good comedic rift between the two and I already like what we’ve seen from Leonard’s cowardice reactions with Zap.

Speaking of Zap, he’s probably my favorite character so far because he separates the main cast so far with such a dynamic attitude.   Chain Sumeragi has an ability it seems–  I haven’t read the manga but she looks straight out of TRIGUN and this show all in all just oozes with cool.

The animation by BONES is top notch.  I’m curious to see how well they will handle two series in 1-cour–  this and Show by Rock!!.  The Mach Monkey is weird and is a nice addition to getting this story off its feet into a crazy crime fantasy series–  he’s attached with Femto’s device in opening the gate.  Which I’m sure we will see eventually.  I’m astonished how well polished this episode had been consistently, not a down drop in quality!  So many drawings in that second half’s fight scene ends up being animated with a fluid style!  Animator Yutaka Nakamura, I’m impressed with this but not surprised considering how well he animated the final episode of Space Dandy where Gel’s ship transforms and the Viva All dance number in the musical episode.  This is the second time I’ve mentioned his work– Garo Episode 18 is a slight nod to his previous works on STAR DRIVER and Sword of the Stranger.  So expected no less from this talented artist!

As much narration as this episode has from Leonard it didn’t detract one bit from all the fun this show threw on screen, especially in 4K with Leonard’s running at the second half and Zap’s fight with that monstrous criminal!  I wonder how the creators will adapt this because we’ve got an original anime character White being introduced into the mix and it’s anyone’s guess right now as to how many cours this will be.  Rie Matsumoto handled Kyousogiga extremely well so I’m sure she can direct this adaptation smoothly.  Also the final Viva All musical number in episode 17 of Dandy is his work as well!

I’m in love with this soundtrack it has quite a bit of jazz scores to it.  This is the second composer in the last two season that has had their debut in an animated work–  Ken Arai with Kiseiju and now Taisei Iwasaki with Kekkai Sensen!




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