Well I think it’s time to get over my hangover, or… something like that. And what better way to exercise my brain than with a review. Now if I try to sum up Blassreiter in a couple of words all I can say is… it’s a pure and simple piece of entertainment that just blows you away and doesn’t disappoint. Much…
The plot is something I like to call ,,Bare basics”. We have a bad guy that want to kill everyone in the world cause he feels like it, and we have a good guy that wants to stop him. Well at first you don’t know that. At first you know about demons appearing in modern Germany called Amalgams. These demons can fuse with technology and thus enhancing their abilities. But of course there is a group called XAT who hunts and kills the demons. So these demons usually appear from dead people, but those that appear from living people are much stronger. So as you can guess more such people start appearing and some use their powers for good and some for evil. But trust me; the plot is simple and easy to follow. The series is made out of story arcs, kind of like chapters. Each arc is about another person who transformed into an Amalgam (and would you guess there is an actual word ,,amalgam” which means an alloy that dentists use to cover holes in your teeth?) The arc starts in the episode of his transformation and ends with his death (or just another transformation). It’s an interesting way to reveal the story, cause instead of following the same character, you follow different characters, and it’s easier to grow attached to some of them. But even if it is a nice sci-fi setting with a nice way of revealing the story, it still falls short of an amazing plot. I mean it’s not bad, but it has no suspense or reason to want more. Basically I felt it was there just to keep everything going and for the action to make sense, as in ,,Why is he doing it? Why is he fighting this person?” But it has no mystery, and the bad guy’s motivation is cliché… ,,Ohhh I hate that guy…and that guy…and that guy…and that guy too… I think I’ll just kill everyone in the world” Also there are things which could’ve used some more suspense, some more mystery. I’m afraid I’ll have to spoil, but to give an example. Later a traitor in the XAT will appear. Now one would think that they will use subtle clues as to who he is, and you strat suspecting him, but then it turns out that a missing piece of the puzzle was found and you put everything together and voila… this other person is the actual traitor. But as I learned, this anime is anything but subtle. You just see a bad guy come up to him and say ,,You wanna live?” ,,Sure” ,,You want power?” ,,Of course” ,,Then ally with me and betray your friends” ,,Hmmmm… Ok”. And that’s it; you see it from the start. It would’ve been so much better with the subtle clues. But all in all, it is a decent story.
Now what attracts me still to see many scenes from it again is… the action of course. Cause that what it is created for, right? To deliver pure mind-numbing fun and kick-ass entertainment. Some of you might disagree, but I think the action here is awesome. I mean pick some random fight scenes, put Phenomenon and you got yourself a winner. The fighting reminds me of Karas (more on that later) but it takes it to a whole new level of entertainment by delivering more and diverse. A personal complaint for me is the amount of drama. I mean don’t get me wrong, it’s nice, powerful, and sometimes I actually ALMOST cried. It gives a good message about the world, how the weak and poor get abused by the rich, how discrimination of racial and national backgrounds still exists, and sometimes does a good job of affecting you emotionally when you see these abuses, and sometimes you can understand some of the characters and their motivations. BUT GOD, HOW MUCH CAN YOU DWELL ON THIS!?! I mean it’s nice to get a feel of what’s going on, but when you get constantly reminded of it, and you see it happening for ENTIRE EPISODES with no action, it just gets a bit frustrating. You just wish that some scenes would be presented in form of flashbacks, and not episodes. But, I say again, this is just something coming out of a guy who prefers action over heart-breaking drama that has no end.
The characters in this anime don’t stand out much. You have your typical lone wolf hero, delusional villain, a silent guy, a noisy guy, a woman that doesn’t know how to act when faced with family problems, etc. But they’re good and some are likable, I mean you’ll really feel bad that they died, and they tend to do that often. I hate to spoil much for those that haven’t seen it yet, but let’s just say that at the end you’ll think it was a genocide. But really, I felt bad when some died, especially since I wanted them to be till the end. I won’t say it is a complaint, just a personal desire, or something like that. But what really stand out are the Amalgams. Every model is different and awesome to look at, cause they have a lot of detail and character. Every time I see them I’m reminded of Karas, cause there really is a striking resemblance, but I think some are more awesome than Karas. Not all, but most have more color and character. I think it’s just a choice of tastes.
The presentation is great. The animation is rich in color and detail, character models look great and make you believe that an ACTUAL PERSON can look that way in real life. And let’s not forget the Amalgams, which look awesome and have some nice CG effects. The music is good. The opening is fast-paced and gives you a feel of the action, while the ending gives you a sense of the drama. But sometimes if you read the lyrics (and in this case hear them) they don’t make much sense. ,,Don’t touch me, baby, freedom baby” WTF? I mean if you read it, maybe it sounds Ok, but when you hear it, there are certain pauses, and the way they sing, well… maybe an ignorant Westerner like me can’t grasp the subtle concept.
Overall, this is a certain recommend to all those action fans out there. If you want some nice kick-ass action with good animation, then I say go for it.