Thursday, August 04, 2011

Soul Eater

I know what you are thinking. "What's this? A post about anime that is NOT written by Monkey Sri? Has the world gone mad??"

No, dear readers, the world has not gone mad. The fact of the matter is I, Maggie Cats, have decided to dip my toe into the anime pool.

I admit that until this point I have not been an anime fan. It's not that I don't like it, in fact I have a little previous anime experience...if you think of Robotech, Sailor Moon, and Unico as anime. The truth is that I always felt like you couldn't lightly get into anime; everyone I know who is a fan is a serious fan, you know what I mean? I just never thought I had the time or the patience to get into a whole new fandom.

Recently I decided that was stupid. If I wanted to watch a little bit of anime, I would dammit! So when Netflix recommended that I watch the anime series Soul Eater, I figured why not. And so I gave it a try.

Like most anime, it's a very different story than we are used to and doesn't reply on our Western cultural tropes. Which is honestly, part of the appeal. Briefly: the show is set at the "Death Weapon Meister Academy (DWMA)," and revolves around three teams consisting of a weapon meister (teenager badass) and human weapon (another teenager who can tranform into a badass weapon). Trying to make the latter a "Death Scythe" and thus fit for use by the academy's headmaster, Lord Death, aka The Grim Reaper, they must collect the souls of 99 evil humans and one witch, in that order; otherwise, they will have to start all over again. That's only the very basics of the plot though, the bigger focus is on the DWMA stopping evil witches and demons from spreading madness throughout the world. It's got awesome fight scenes, a bunch of plot surprises and twists, and while some of the characters annoy (mostly the male teenage ones, natch), for the most part it's an exciting, addicting, and really well-made series.

As my first real crack at anime I found it relatively easy to get into the world of the show. A couple things didn't necessarily translate well (boys get bloody noses when they are attracted to someone?? Whatever), and of course many of the women had RIDICULOUSLY large boobs, but the differences are part of the appeal for anime. You never know what to expect, and that is something I really like. Also, the first three episodes were pure set-up and intended to introduce the show's main characters. So if things seem a bit slow at first, stick with it and the plot soon picks way up.

For people who are not really into anime (yet), Soul Eater is a great gateway into the world, and I really recommend the show. The entire series (about 50 some episodes) is available on Netflix.

They may look like kids, but half of them turn into weapons and the other half will kick your face in. Fun for the whole family!


Scienter said...

My anime experience is limited to Ghost in the Shell, which I enjoyed, and Akira, which I can barely remember watching. I think it was in law school? Maybe I'll give this a try!

Maggie Cats said...

Go for it! But remember, don't judge it by the first few've got to let it get into its plot groove.