You are currently browsing the Obsessivity weblog archives for the day Tuesday, October 17th, 2006.

17 Oct 2006

Erementar Gerad – Complete

Anime

Postponing the last four episodes was definitely a good idea. It would have been hard to take a break between them. Yeah, okay, it’s mostly been done before, but it was still a good story.

I did mean to mention the reason I watched it in the first place. Reading the description made me think it may have been a source that Simoun copied, but there’s no connection. Simoun’s mystical skywriting may have been done before, but it wasn’t here.

Also – one major defect in Erementar Gerad was the narration. We didn’t really need a recap at the beginning of each episode. But far worse were the interruptions to explain technical points. If they can’t be done in context, the storytelling has failed. That was mostly confined to the early episodes, fortunately, but it was still annoying. There was too much monologuing in the last two episodes, too.

Still, they’re fairly minor problems in a decent series. Probably not one I’ll watch again, but you never know.

Edit: I’m already finding myself slightly depressed that I’m no longer part of that world. That’s one of the marks of a good obsession. I guess I’ll leave it on the list for a day or two. I’ll especially miss the opening – though I now have the song on my current playlist. It’s a high-energy techno track that sounds completly typical of an anime opening piece, but it’s highly catchy. I don’t think I’ll be letting go of it anytime soon, either. (Forever, by Savage Genius.)

Current obsessions: (anime) Simoun
Elfen Lied
Erementar Gerad

17 Oct 2006

Erementar Gerad

Anime

I’m a little surprised that Erementar Gerad / Elemental Gelade (which is a more accurate transliteration) made it to my list of current obsessions. When I started watching it, I didn’t think of it as much more than a fighting anime with interesting touches.

What keeps me interested in a story is not generally events but relationships. A strong romance can cover a weak story – so I loved Kannazuki no Miko, though I dislike mecha in general, “mecha from the gods” in particular, and found the entire evil crew to be completely without merit.

Erementar Gerad is the story of Coud, a (obligatory “of course”) teenage boy, a very typical scruffy fighting anime / video game anti-hero, who discovers a girl among stolen loot. She, Ren, is a member of a race known as the Edil Raid, who have supernatural powers – including the ability to bond with a human to give him a greater power than either alone. For self-preservation she “reacts” with Coud in the first episode.

Since the bond of a true Edil Raid is for life, this makes Coud a target of everyone who wants to use Ren for their own purposes, and involves Coud in Ren’s quest to join with her people.

The growth of the relationship between Coud and Ren is the backbone of the story, though the plot also takes some unusual twists, keeping it interesting. (Some stupid / inexplicable inconsistencies, too, but that’s fairly normal.) As with most anime boy-girl love stories there’s far too much denial and embarrassment, but the pacing is good, and the affection between the two is well-handled.

(The relative weakness of boy-girl romance in anime is the main reason I find myself drawn to yuri stories. It isn’t that they’re girl-girl, just that they’re usually more compelling.)

So, early on, I had no problem just watching a couple of episodes and moving on. But at this point, four episodes from the end, I had trouble last night convincing myself that it was better to postpone the finale until I was awake enough to appreciate it. About the only thing that would interfere with me finishing Erementar Gerad is if I could pick up those last two DVDs of Elfen Lied… or more Simoun. So it’s definitly sneaked onto the obsessions list, for now.

(Good news. Simoun 17 has moved up from “QC4” where it has languished for a long time to “QC5” at simon-fans. Whatever the heck that means…)

Erementar Gerad music is by Kajiura Yuki, which ought to make the series an automatic favorite of mine. That’s going to take some re-watching, I guess. The incidental music seems quite understated, which is unusual for her.

Current obsessions: (anime) Simoun
Elfen Lied
Erementar Gerad