RWBY – Ice Queendom #01 — In Celebration of Nepotism

June 25th, 2022


Two legacies who personally know the president and a rich person got into the school of their choice? *gasp*

The first three episodes 'pre-aired' on Crunchyroll, and the fourth episode is scheduled to be shown at Anime Expo a week from tomorrow on July 3rd, the same day its actual broadcast begins. In other words, episode 4 is next Sunday, and episode 5 on is Sundays beginning July 31st. I think I'm just going to watch one episode at a time with at least a short to long break between them to cleanse the palate. Perhaps some of my issues will be addressed two minutes into the next episode and I'll feel silly slightly later, but that's a risk I'm willing to take.


I'm not totally sure how to approach this, not having watched more than a clip here or there of the original CGI RWBY series. The initial season being a series of mostly ~5 minute shorts certainly didn't help. So we come to this, which appears to be a alternate universe retelling aimed at fans, and I don't qualify as such. I will say that the animation certainly got a lot of effort and genuinely looks quite good. The fights are fast paced, well choreographed, music fits, not bogged down by pointless exposition or blathering weird technojargan from the sidelines. It could definitely be better though. Every fight is quite one-sided, just the girls beating up random monster/robots/dudes. Take your Garo/Rage of Bahamut/Tokyo Majin/Horizon fights, for example, and there's a lot more back and forth, not to mention banter, even if the raw animation on display wasn't the same caliber. These were more like the recent Symphogear season fights. Visually impressive, but lacking in any tension or weight. Not to mention a little weirdness in the scale. Did this dude seriously put on his best opera clothing and park an aircraft downtown to rob the local bodega?

It's everything else in this first episode that I'm far more uncertain about, and I'm not sure how much of that goes to me not being an existing RWBY fan. It's basically vignettes for three of the titular four characters where they all announce that they want to go to school, somebody gasps some random nonsense jargon word as they watch them beat up -random noun-, and then… they smile about getting to go to school. It's again spread quite thin and there's both no story nor plot to speak of, nor any character depth greater than "I want to do my best." Which isn't to say that I want them to stop and explain the whole world setting. Gods no. It's Generic RPG World where it calles its magicite/fonons/unobtanium dust. I'm confident I can keep up. But I want more of a narrative than "girls want to Do Their Best, and Doing Their Best means going to school because that's where they can Do Their Best."


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