Tears to Tiara #26 — The Once and Future Blech

September 27th, 2009


Good, it’s over.


I think my favorite part of this episode was how the very first thing that Merkadis did was blow up a mountain, just to show off his power. Then, while everybody sat around waiting for Ogam to explain the deus ex way to beat the damn beasty, it politely sat there for about 4 minutes. Luckily, by being Primula’s descendant, Ria has the SUPER MAGIC in her that can kill the critter, but only if she believes in herself, or Arawn, or her desire to stop sucking enough. I don’t think it really matters which one you go with because they’re all terrible.

So, an awful ending to what has been an awful final arc. Everything was completely fabricated through flashbacks, characters died and then came back to life a couple episodes later, and they spent as much time on the zombie of a mook from EPISODE 1 as they did on either of the supposed world destroying gods. But thankfully, Riannon believed in herself, so the day was saved and everybody lived happily ever after. Hell, Arawn and Arthur were the only ones that even had a scratch on them. Now that says hard-fought victory.

Final Thoughts:

If I had to sum up the most egregious problems with this show, it would be pacing and focus. Both were simply godawful from start to finish. At the start, it was a bit less noticeable, but then they reached the end and had to cut away from current events for almost three episodes worth of flashback over four episodes just to make the final battle make a lick of sense. Then, when they came back, the characters immediately overcame whatever they were fighting by waving their magic sword or using whatever new magic power they had found. The only time there was ever a sense that the heroes were on their heels at all was when Lydia’s ridiculous tree ninja-knights ambushed them back in the first half of the series. Every single other battle that had anything to do with the plot, the good guys easily and immediately won within a minute or two.

So that’s the lack of any drama in the action, which brings us to the glut of characters. It’s a common problem with a cast this large, but that doesn’t make it any less of a problem. A lack of development for tertiary characters is fine, but the show was enamored of constantly cutting away from a demiurge detonating mountains, or a castle siege, just so we could see what the maids were up to this time. Even Arawn never received any significant attention. He stopped being anything except a cheerleader after he killed some zombies. For the central character and a DEMIGOD, you’d expect him to at least do something. I realize that it’s an adaptation, but it’s the job of such to smooth over the bad and play up the good. They could have spaced out the flashbacks, could have shortened or skipped some of the more nonsensical arcs, could have cut the episode where a giant dragon fights a rock, but they failed to do any of that.

I will say that it was one of the most solid productions I’ve seen in a while. That actually made some things more frustrating since they would do a really great job with scenes that had absolutely no importance at all and then half-ass or cram in flashbacks to the end of arcs. Even at its worst though, it was still at least a tier or two above most other action shows. It’s a shame that they couldn’t really seem to put the effort in where it counted and really make those important scenes memorable. Instead, I remember how great the cave troll was, and how they worked so much harder to kill the automated archer bots than they did the 300 foot tall angel-monster.

So, if you just want some brainless action, you can do far worse. If you’re looking for some kind of epic fantasy adventure, you’re probably better off looking somewhere else.

Posted in Tears to Tiara | 6 Comments »

6 Shouts From the Peanut Gallery

  • DK says:

    Too much blah, not enough action. I mean, geez, they cut off the OP and ED just to cram in more dialog…!? Then again, what can you expect from fighting a(nother) giant dick monster?

    So in the end, Arawn is Kamina (minus the hot-blooded shonen personality) to Riannon’s Simon. That’s right, Riannon of all people! I pretty much facepalm’d after seeing her get trasported back to the flower field again only to get more words of encouragement from Primula. Let’s just give her a Core Drill and get this over with! I guess Arthur just forgot his idiot flaws when he learned he was just being mindraped by some white dude. Then he goes on to become Saber as a bonus…

    I still can’t believe how much they downplayed the harem aspect of this series. Hey! People! Arthur still needs a queen to rule with him, y’know! If we go by the Arthurian Legend, Morgan is the closest chance of Arthur having an “heir,” but I wouldn’t rule out the possibility of Octavia being a (sorta) reasonable facsimile of Guinevere.

    Welp, like I said before, pacing issues, too many flashbacks, too much internal monologue, not enough action, and little to no character development pretty much ruined this potentially great anime. I just don’t see this anime getting revisited with fanservice OVA’s like Utawarerumono is currently enjoying. In the end, TtT is just a “watch once, then forget entirely”-series; it looks pretty (funded by Animax’s international simulcast and all), but that’s basically all it has going for.

    • Yue says:

      Yes, people are more interested on animating how characters level and battle their way to progress the story. Like Tales, it’s suppose to be a game. Yes, story is important but not to the extent that it overshadows battles.

      Anime audiences tend to have short attention lifespans and aren’t much interested in more than 20 second conversations unless it’s followed up by comedy, drama, fanservice or an action scene. ^_^

  • Anonymous says:

    It’s shows like this that really turn me off to the fantasy adventure genre. I like the concept, and in fact play a lot of RPGs, but anime that try to do the same end up talking way too much and just skip most of the fighting.

  • Bill says:

    Believe in me! Who believes in you!

  • Lero says:

    Uh oh! be aware of the lolicons on the house Arawn!

  • Solaris says:

    Maybe the adaptation of the game wasn’t that great and it wasn’t possible to flesh out well the whole cast, but after all this anime had action, nice story with development and (very important) a proper ending. Proper endings are quite rare in nowadays animation. I shouldn’t rate it low.