Episode Title: The Devil of the Rhine
On the front lines of the war, there is a little girl. Blond hair, blue eyes, and porcelain white skin, she commands her squad with lisping voice. Her name is Tanya Degurechaff. But in reality, she is one of Japan’s most elite salarymen, reborn as a little girl after angering a mysterious being who calls himself God. This little girl, who prioritizes efficiency and her own career over anything else, will become the most dangerous being amongst the sorcerers of the imperial army.
It’s early, but thus far Youjo Senki is giving me everything I expected: an insane little girl fighting in WWI. Once again the names are changed to protect the innocent and we have The Empire vs The Republic, with our hero Tanya fighting on behalf of The Fatherland. I got a bit of a spoiler before watching this that Tanya and the others were powered by magic, but it looks like it comes from their equipment rather than inherent ability. I didn’t really understand the small act of mercy at first, given what the show advertised itself to be, but it all made sense by the end of the episode.
I think the whole thing is different enough from Izetta to avoid going down the same path. I don’t really understand her being a reborn Japanese salaryman, though. I guess it may become relevant later.
The animation is decent enough and never slips to ‘bad’. There is nothing for me to really complain about as the atmosphere is dreary enough to sell the wartime setting and the action, while a little stiff, is serviceable. Tanya’s seiyuu is Aoi Yuuki, who I’m starting to like more with every role I see of hers. I do hope that there’s more to this show than just Tanya being evil, but for an opening it covered what it needed to.
– WWI fanservice
– Reasonable magic system?
– Unexplained background
– Possibly one note
I had originally added Youjo Senki to my watch list, but since Weekend Otaku chose it first, I substituted it for another title. Needless to say, I was looking forward to this series. Anime narratives unfolding in historical settings has always appealed to me. Being a huge history nerd myself, I can appreciate the effort it takes to create an original story, while accurately portraying the period.
The opening scene of Youjo reminded me of Saving Private Ryan, with the battle scene unfolding much as one would expect in an actual war. Unfortunately, everything sort of went down hill after that. The animation was not the greatest, with many scenes lacking fine details. In a scene where the soldiers are standing (well, hovering really) next to one another, the exact same profile seemed to be used for a handful of them. Aside from this, viewers were not privy to any sort of background regarding the characters; meaning I have absolutely no budding attachment to any of them. Much of the content felt contrived for the sake of the narrative, which left me feeling overall disappointed. So far, all this series has going for it is the fight scenes; they are captivating. Hopefully, next week Youjo Senki will deliver some much needed character and story development.
– Decent battle scenes
– Recycled animation for background characters
– Overly tsundere protagonist; already becoming annoying
This post is part of our seasonal episodic review series. To view all the posts in this series, click the following link: Viewing Party