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Public Discussions

GreenCine Movie Talk
Discuss all topics related to anime.

One Episode Review(tm): Gilgamesh
Topic by: ahogue
Posted: January 27, 2007 - 12:32 PM PST
Last Reply: January 27, 2007 - 11:58 PM PST

author topic: One Episode Review(tm): Gilgamesh
post #1  on January 27, 2007 - 12:32 PM PST  
Yeah, maybe I shouldn't be reviewing whole TV shows after a single episode, but I'm busy and no one pays me to watch bad anime just so that I can claim some kind of spurious authoritativity.

So, Gilgamesh looked up my alley. Post-apocalyptic (never gets old) check, dark themes and color palette -- check, and, well, that's all it took actually. I hadn't heard anything about it, but that's not always a bad sign. No one seems to have seen Texhnolyze after all*, and that's one of my favorites (which incidentally shares the above-mentioned superficial features with Gilgamesh).

I will say this for Gilgamesh, if someone (as someone always does) should pop in and tell me that Gilgamesh is actually a raving masterpiece I wouldn't necessarily think them insane. Gosh, I mean, it could become a decent show, I guess, but consider the following bad, bad signs:

1) Annoying, 2D-looking character designs. While it is nice to see designs which differ from the standard anime fare (although this in itself is not so unusual anymore), the characters' faces are busy with complicated and distracting patterns of lines all over the place. Shading is outlined, for instance, to give it what I assume is an intentional "inked and filled in" look. Augmenting this is the very flat appearance of the characters. In some cases the primitive look is really taken much too far, and the faces look like they were drawn by a slightly more talented Napolean Dynamite, with crudely disproportional features. I'm just not a fan, not at all.

2) Cheap animation. The animation looks very cheap to me. In the first episode, a character is -- I can't remember exactly -- rummaging in her purse, let's say. She is framed in a medium shot with the purse/whatever out of frame, and her arm blips back and forth like one of those old liquid crystal portable videogames that used to be popular in the days before gameboys. Just terrible.

On the other hand, the show does make liberal use of what I assume are CG tricks, some of which are admittedly nice and reasonably subtle. I have particularly in mind on shot in which a door which is being pounded on from the outside actually deforms in a convex fashion so it looks as if the door is actually rattling. It was one nice effect but it doesn't make up for other moments which lack such special effects.

Over all, the episode has a very cheap feel to it.

3) Derivative, derivative, derivative. How many times is Neon Genesis Evangelion going to be resurrected? At least as many times as it can be given a slightly new twist by using the mythology of a different culture. Hence, instead of Judeo-christian symbolism, we here have Sumerian. Otherwise, though there are no robots in the first episode, there are giant government experiments with heavy priestly-mystical overtones and crazed geniuses bent on the destruction of the world and all that -- all in the first ep, mind you. I thought NGE had its good points, but I couldn't take Raxhephon seriously and I'm getting tired of this sort of story.

4) Really bad music. I've gotten used to anime music -- even grown to really like one or two opening or ending themes -- but there is a limit. Poppy funky techno opening is tonally discordant (with the the show) almost to the point of hilarity. The ending theme I simply skipped -- it was too much to sit through.

In summary, I think I'm sending this one back with the rest of the disk unwatched.

(NB: If I've just trashed your favorite anime of all time, please keep in mind that I have no idea what I'm talking about.)

* No doubt, at least in part, because of the indecipherable and utterly gratuitous "respelling". Could they have made it any harder to find with a search engine?
post #2  on January 27, 2007 - 12:42 PM PST  
I started watching this, and stopped after a bit... I wasn't repelled or anything, but my interest just flagged. I've heard good things about it. I suppose someday I can go back and finish it but I'm not terribly compelled.
post #3  on January 27, 2007 - 11:58 PM PST  
My complaint is that in the first episode the kids are shown some truly disgusting looking fried chicken, salty gravy, and frozen peas and carrots, yet the kids murmer "looks great".

I kinda liked the grey irises (although they got irritating fast).

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