Captain earth – a mech show with standard looking protagonist with a trying past. And not this guy
Heck even google refuses to give me anime related results. The following article contains heavy spoilers. Reader discretion is advised. For final verdict, scroll down to the end of the post. Bones! The guys who gave us Fullmetal Alchemist and Darker than Black and the much celebrated mechas Eureka Seven and RahXephon, comes another which escalates the scale of its universe so much in the first episode itself , I am actually worried the rest might not be so interesting.. But let us not rely on first impressions, and hope for the best.
A rather deep and depressing introduction to the anime. We are introduced to a male character waking up from what looks like a flashback. An ordinary teenage boy with the ‘first semester of his second year in high school ending’. A throwaway line to express his age I believe. The character is shown to be disinterested in his school academics and spends more time surfing the internet for information on space and things concerning his father’s disappearance which is infact, death in a space related accident. The first 3 minutes of the episode is just exposition, with no significant information regarding the character or any of the characters.
After some strange and odd timed events like the introduction to the team rocket – esque characters, we finally get to some interesting animation.
Again, in a series of flashbacks, our character Daichi Minatsu, meets and befriends Teppei Arashi. And then we switch to present times again. From what I could gather up until 10 minutes into the episode is nothing. Literally nothing. There are almost 4 flashbacks in 10 minutes, all jerky and oddly placed. The animation is fluid but feels like it is edited in haste. The flashbacks and current timeline were recorded separately and the someone asked some desk assistant to somehow put them together. Event though the flashbacks and present time line are supposed to act in accordance with each other, the past explaining things as the current events roll along, everything seems to skim over the head.
After what feels like 15 minutes of more flashbacks, we see earth getting attacked by the alien Jessie in some sort of a pod that transforms into a mech as it is beamed? I dont know…..transported next to earth. We finally get to see some action as the protagonist somehow learns to control a giant robot which is upgraded into a super giant robot as it plummets towards the enemy ship in what can only be considered as a cliff hanger for the hopefully , a better explained second episode.
Why watch it?
This series made me realise how much I value exposition over visually perceiving the events on screen. I would rather have a silhouette of some important looking guy sitting in a chair giving me the details all at once then go over them in the form of disjointed flashbacks that come without announcing themselves like an annoying cousin. The whole thing feels rushed and broken despite the amazing animation quality. The colours are great. Not too in the face and with just the right amount of variety. Also the character designs are commendable and believable. But then its an anime with giant robots, belief is really the last thing on the creators’ minds. Being an anime only series, I am curious to see where this story goes. We have hardly had any character development or any story development in these 24 min, and I am looking forward to more. I am also curious to know their justification to Daichi’s off screen instant space craft training that made him pilot that thing and most importantly, let qualified scientist let him handle that robot. Although I am a little sceptical of the scale they have set in the first episode itself, and I fear they may lose their charm easily. The villains or the supposed antagonists at this point also look quite interesting, and its not just their costumes.
With a plethora of other characters being hinted at in this episode, Captain Earth looks interesting enough to give it a go. Also, with so many flashbacks, I expect heavy character development in the coming 24 episodes. Not to mention the colorful character designs and the whole universe set up in the series looks like it’ll keep things fun and engaging for a while.
And a last mention to the song featured at the end ‘mugen no hana’ by flumpool (Its flumpool for goodness sakes!!!!!). I guess I wont be skipping opening songs for this anime.