Guilty Crown – 19

Though the writing in Guilty Crown dependably stays somewhere between atrocious and horrific, there are still aspects of this anime that create some genuine enjoyment for me.  This episode did well to magnify two of these elements to even greater degrees and thus, are worthy of comment and admiration this week.  One of these features is that Guilty Crown is usually entertaining, especially when spectacular action sequences dazzle with visual eye candy, vigorous energy, and hilarious circumstances.  The other is the generally likable (and attractive) cast of minor characters, specifically Haruka and Ayase this episode.

While entertainment is not the main purpose of Guilty Crown, unlike comedy or fanservice anime, episodes end up satisfying this characteristic through visually appealing action sequences.  The spontaneous skirmish at the end of this episode, pitting the ruthless Segai and his Endlaves against the remaining members of Funeral Parlor, Shu’s schoolmates, and his non-blood-related mother, was more than enough action to take the episode from humdrum to exciting.  Simple firefights with machine guns, explosions, and giant robots are enough to pass that entertainment threshold.  But what happened next is what made the whole episode worthwhile in terms of entertainment.

Shu’s appearance and subsequent broken use of his new Void power really took the episode over the top both in terms of hilariously bad writing and entertainment.  And while it took the anime down a step in terms of writing, seemingly reaching a new low each week, it was a positive move in terms of entertainment.  Not only were the battle sequences brilliantly directed and gushing with visually stellar sequences, the writing and turn of events added a bit of camp value too to add in some comedy to an otherwise somber and serious scene.  It’s not hard to peg that there were plot holes, shoddy storytelling, and awful pacing in this episode but it’d be even harder to deny that it was not the least bit entertaining.

Despite the fact that the writing has also limited character development and reduced characters to mere stereotypes or background scenery (poor Kanon), I generally like most of the cast of Guilty Crown.  The reason for liking most of the characters, however, is pretty shallow but is a reason why I, and likely many, continue to watch Guilty Crown.  For one, Haruka has always been attractive, both in appearance and personality, even without the unnecessary ecchi scenes, and her seemingly lost or confused role in the story.  Seeing her actually advance the plot in a meaningful way really helped her character by showing that she’s more than just fanservice.  Also showing her deal with these moral dilemmas, such as how to use the final Void genome, showed some growth in her character.  She’s beyond that underwear-clad, beer-drinking, free-spirit that we were introduced to back when Guilty Crown attempted to be something akin to an action/comedy/fanservice anime.

Ayase, though significantly more developed and prominent than Haruka, also dazzled in the spotlight in this episode thanks to the way the episode was structured.  Like most of the female cast of Guilty Crown, Ayase benefits from being cute (and therefore popular), but what separates her from the rest of the girls is her strong, independent, and compassionate personality.  This was on full display when she wanted to assume the burden of the final Void genome and face Gai herself.  What backed up this decision was a throughout explanation that seemed valid from her point of view.  Furthermore, she had the tenacity to act on her decision when her party was trapped in a pincer attack and risked her life in an attempt to rescue her comrades and new friends.  Her noble personality is really what makes Ayase one of the more likable characters in Guilty Crown.

Though Guilty Crown continues to be ridiculed weekly for its horrendous writing, and rightfully so, there are areas of the series where I find authentic enjoyment and actually like Guilty Crown for what it is.  Removing the elements of the writing, such as the issues with plot progression and character development, really removes most of the problems with the series and leaves behind a decent or respectable anime.  The directing, cast, voice acting, setting, and entertainment are all performed quite well for the anime and I’m still thoroughly pleased with the art and animation.  It’s a shame the dreadful writing in this anime has stolen most of the focus from this show away from its better aspects but it makes it more meaningful to take a step back and examine the other aspects of the anime and come to your own conclusion or judgment for how they’re doing.

So Shu’s new void power has the ability to absorb everyone’s voids into himself for him to use whenever?  Despite breaking numerous rules that were established throughout the series and again raising the ethical questions behind using voids when they were a death sentence just an episode ago, does this mean that character will no longer be needed for their voids and can fade into irrelevancy now?  I’m assuming that since Shu has all these voids now he won’t need to see them again to use their voids which means the character as essentially unnecessary for any further action or battle sequences.  I doubt they’ll be gone for good but I foresee that these characters, Yahiro, Kanon, and Souta, will quickly disappear from the anime until perhaps the finale or epilogue or something.  If they do show up and are relevant to the circumstances or play a role of any kind, I’d be greatly surprised.  For now, I figure these forgettable characters will slowly disappear from the anime until the very end which is either sad or not depending on how much you liked these characters.

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  1. #1 by Myst on March 3, 2012 - 7:24 AM

    I am quite pleased by the amount of Ayase in this episode, but that’s about it. I’m not a fan of Haruka because all her ecchi scenes annoyed me earlier in the show, especially as she was supposed to be Shu’s mom.

    One thing I forgot to mention in my own post was the idea of Shu’s void being an arm. Does this mean that he had to LOSE an arm first before he would be able to use his void? The logical answer would be that his void can change to be appropriate to any shape, but it still defeats the significance of Shu losing his arm two episodes back. Does anything matter in this show? Kill an important character and he will be back. Lost a limb? NO PROBLEM, what do you think we have Voids for? Lose the void genome? Don’t worry, your mom has one more locked away!

    I kind of wish that Ayase was the one to use the new void genome cause that would’ve been an awesome troll. Plus, it would mean that she would get more focus in the story. :3

    • #2 by avvesione on March 4, 2012 - 3:56 AM

      Everyone I’ve talked to (only a handful of people, mind you) all wanted Ayase to use the Void Genome on herself and be the new hero. I think we’re all disappointed Guilty Crown didn’t go down that path since that would’ve been amazing.

      As for Shu’s void, I have no clue what it is exactly. What we saw it do was make a crystaline replica of his arm and he was able to use it like his normal arm but what else can it do. You do bring up a good point asking what it’d be like if he used it before he lost his arm and I wonder the same thing. I’m not sure what his void is exactly since it isn’t a gun, binoculars, or a refridgerator, but it might be something akin to Tsugumi’s which makes replicas of people.

      And yeah, Guilty Crown does have incredibly poor writing at times, especially the examples you listed above. They continue to play the card that pits the characters in a corner they can’t logically escape from but give them some unexplained plot device as an easy way out everytime completely missing the chance for character development or intelligence to emerge.

  2. #3 by CANCERINYOURHEART on March 22, 2012 - 3:52 PM

    im not dissapointed at all! guilty crown is an amazing anime! you’re probably a fking old turd that hates everyone and everything in the world PFFF FKING HATERS!

  3. #4 by CANCERINYOURHEART on March 22, 2012 - 3:55 PM

    PS why the fk would you even watch this anime of you hate everything about it OMFG!

    • #5 by avvesione on March 25, 2012 - 6:20 PM

      Glad to hear you enjoy the anime more than I do. Sorry to hear our opinions don’t match on this anime but that’s often how it goes between people with different tastes.

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