Guilty Crown – 2

Gut check time.  After two episodes, let’s take a moment to review what Guilty Crown is doing right, where it’s underperforming, and what is going wrong.

When wanting to see what Guilty Crown is doing right, you don’t have to look far.  It’s everywhere.  The art and animation haven’t taken a significant drop in quality after the first episode, so we can expect this excellence throughout the anime.  The artwork is still gorgeous with its brilliant use of lighting and the motion in the animation, especially considering the bulky movements by the mecha, has been tremendous.  In fact, the animation used in the fighting sequences is probably better than those in the first episode, showing a more comprehensive battle and detailing more characters and mecha.  And all those pretty pictures and seamless animation certainly help out another aspect that Guilty Crown is doing right: the action.

So far the action and fighting in Guilty Crown has been terrific.  We’ve seen several different types of mecha fighting, getting trashed, beaten up, and always exploding, which has made for some rousing battles, even if we’re still wondering what’s going on exactly.  The ground-personnel, mainly equipped with guns and laser-thingies, have added another dimension to the battles as well and provide another angle to the fighting making this more than just a mecha-dominated anime.  Shu and his diverse range of weaponry certainly has made for some exciting moments, too.  And even when there isn’t any fighting on screen, the characters (mainly Tsugumi) are still bouncing around (literally!).  The only time they rest is when they start up on the story and the situation.  And that’s where things begin to turn.

Even though it has only been two episodes, I can’t help but feel the set-up and the story are underperforming, at least from where I expected a series like this to be.  The scenes just sorta seem to happen without any defined purpose or clear continuity and the explanations provided are a little lacking.  At first, Funeral Parlor was stealing some genomic weapon (more on that later) and then they had a mission failure, losing the cylinder and a precious mecha, and immediately go out to rescues irrelevant civilians with their entire team and several expensive resources.  It could’ve been transitioned or explained easier than what we got.  The story, while still in its infancy, has taken a backseat to exploring Shu’s new power and developing the setting.  While I’m very happy with both right now and realize that the story shouldn’t be explained entirely by now, I’m a little concerned that the story hasn’t really formed yet.  So far it seems like there’s a resistance, an oppressive military, a powerful genomic weapon, and a virus that wiped out most of the population.  These elements have been connected somewhat but there’s no clear direction to go from here.  It will be explained further soon but it’s a little troubling to have no real story by this point when this season is only 11 episodes.

There’s only one aspect so far in Guilty Crown that has been wrong and that’s the needless inclusion of ecchi elements.  Does this series really need bouncing breasts, jiggling butts, purposefully ecchi camera shots, and a wardrobe for the female cast that is either a full-body spandex suit or an outfit that is missing its entire front?  This fanservice hasn’t crossed the line where it’s actually affected the enjoyment of the series but you have to wonder what else is in store for later episodes.  Is this a theme that will continue throughout, showing off skimpy clothes, boob physics, and pretty soon naked chicks?  Are we going to have a beach or onsen episode later?  An anime like this with a brilliant staff, healthy budget, and vast amounts of potential shouldn’t need to use fanservice like this to tell its story or develop its characters.  Unless it begins to be used to develop sexual tension or something, I feel that the ecchi elements in Guilty Crown are wrong or at least not warranted.  Hopefully these elements will be downplayed in future episodes but we’ll have to wait and see (or not see) to find out.

One detail about the mechas that I appreciated in Guilty Crown that other mecha animes seem to ignore is the location of the pilots in these war-machines.  It seems the staff of this anime realized that in the future, it makes sense to have the pilots located off-site in the mecha rather than having them inside the machines.  There are trade-offs for each but this one seems the most logical considering that the pilots face reduced risks and that multiple people are capable of piloting the machine whereas it’s only one when they’re inside the machine.  But the detail that impressed me was that Ayase’s machine, an archaic one used by Funeral Parlor, had the pilot within the machine compared to the others.  Not only does it show the difference in resources and abilities between the two sides but it shows that technology has improved from whenever those old machines were left over in Japan to the infusion of these new ones.  Minor, unrelated details like that always strike me as impressive or meaningful because they’re someone’s idea that made it all the way to the final product, adding another piece to the setting that is Guilty Crown.  I hope to see more of these details as the series continues to help build a strong and inspiring world for Guilty Crown.

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  1. #1 by zammael on October 21, 2011 - 12:58 AM

    Wow what a complete collapse. How embarrassing: despite a star studded creative team, this is the result? Makes u wonder what sort of mandate they were under, if they seem to be mailing in the concepts by trading them in for cliched tropes? I’m frigging serious.

    Dropped.

    • #2 by avvesione on October 21, 2011 - 2:45 PM

      I’ve seen a lot of people rant/rage about this episode of Guilty Crown and I’m shocked. The series has been a let down so far but are people really this dissatisfied from some cliches and a school setting? Everyone’s overreacting I think. Then again, everything is open to interpretation. I’m fine with the series so far but I know some others who, like you, have already dropped it.

      Kinda curious to see what people will be like Thursday, after a week off, if they’ll try it again. Even if they do try one more episode, I figure they’ll still drop it since it’s entirely school-based. Oh well.

      • #3 by Zammael on October 21, 2011 - 4:36 PM

        You’re right to question the response in general. Can’t speak for others, but Perhaps I’ve been spoiled rotten by a steady diet of great anime in recent months, which mutates my expectations to absurd levels.

        What’s specifically disappointing is the generic setting and ideas: nothing is challenging; no villain as protagonist or Machiavellian genius attempting to change the world for noble purposes. That was the advance hype I was hoping for.

        I mean I have no issues with Fate/Zero other than a couple of lazy character designs. Far less ambitious but far more intriguing due to the galaxy of characters and a story potentially rich enough to go anywhere.

      • #4 by avvesione on October 21, 2011 - 5:03 PM

        (replying here because otherwise the text becomes too narrow)

        I think what’s hurting this anime more than anything else are the unrealistic expectations set up for it (of which, I’m part to blame). We were given an all-star staff, superb animation, and awesome PVs to hype this show and this is what we’re getting. And while it hasn’t lived up to its expectations, it hasn’t been terrible either. There are problems with the show but nothing major, just a handful of tired stereotypes and a school setting (which you’ve said are the most disappoint aspects of the show). It hasn’t been the anime we all expected it to be and that’s why I think people are so outraged/frustrated with these minor details. At least that’s how I see it.

  2. #5 by ThatOneGuy on October 26, 2011 - 8:10 PM

    No more commenting on the genome weapon? Or how Gai completely disregarded the fact that the genomic weapon could very easily have been his before he told schue to keep if well guarded as he runs off into a warground?

    • #6 by avvesione on October 27, 2011 - 1:09 AM

      No more comments right now at least. I want to see more of it and get a better idea of what it is and what to expect from it (both ability and its role in the story) before I’ll go in-depth on the subject.

      That and everything I write about is pretty much a tangent or something off-topic every week.

    • #7 by Kakusei Heroism on November 14, 2011 - 10:39 PM

      i see nothing wrong with it its been far greater than any anime ive seen in a long wile

  3. #8 by Kakusei Heroism on November 14, 2011 - 10:37 PM

    WTF uive watched this anime nothing wrong with it and so echi parts would be cool lol idk why your all triping best anime ive seen in a long time

    • #9 by avvesione on November 17, 2011 - 9:38 AM

      I’ve liked and enjoyed GC so far but there are some things that are wrong with it and the ecchi is one of them. For one, it’s out of place, not really integrating with the story as well, more just a way to sex out their girls. But I guess not everyone agrees with me which is fine. I’m sure there are plenty out there who fully support the ecchi in GC like yourself.

  1. Notes of Guilty Crown Episodes 2-5 « Organization Anti-Social Geniuses
  2. Notes of Guilty Crown Episodes 2-5 | Organization Anti-Social Geniuses

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