A “new school battle action” project by Sunrise. The tagline is “People’s memories change the world!”
Exhaustive summary, I know.
I sat down to watch this episode not knowing what to expect except for a school, battles, and action. Maybe something about memories too.
Sacred Seven jumps right into things with a malicious statue wrecking a ship. In the distance and possibly connected, the main character Tandoji Arma suffers from a seizure involving darkness covering his body and his eyes changing color. Observing the situation from a faraway rooftop is a dark, shadowy figure in what looks like a mechanical suit.
What the hell’s going on? That was pretty much what was going through my head at this point (it was also what was going through my head after I finished the episode, but that’s for later). Pushing this away for a bit, we’re introduced to the main character – Tandoji Arma, tall, thin, silent, and feared almost all of his fellow students as a violent person who had hurt classmates in the past. The one student who doesn’t fear him is Wakana (didn’t get her last name), an eternally cheerful and friendly girl who talks to Tandoji and even goes so far as to invite him to join her club activities, despite the warnings of her friends. Gotta respect her for having the courage to talk to someone so ostracized by the rest of the school. It’s not an easy thing, beating peer pressure. She ends up inviting him to a museum trip with the rest of her club. Well, it’s partially guilting him into it since she insists that she’ll be waiting for him until he comes. Really now, what kind of main character would leave a girl waiting out in the cold for him?
The next character is Ruri Aiba, head of the Aiba Foundation which is probably some sort of colossal corporation, supported by her servant Kagami and her extensive team of uniformed maids (lol?). She tells Tandoji that the disaster of the ship was caused by a Darkstone monster, and that they need his power to fight it. To illustrate their information and for our benefit, Kagami also gives us a data dump on Tandoji’s situation: “17 years old, second year at the New Minato Academy, decent grades, at the age of 14 went berserk, wounding 18 high school students and given a six month suspension, father missing, mother delivered while single and died ten years ago, …” At this, Tandoji gets mad and undergoes another transformation like at the beginning. Ruri and company back off.
Action starts here – Ruri’s group mobilizes to deal with the Darkstone that is now rampaging through the town, while Tandoji notices the Darkstone and is guilted into trying to save Wakana. Kagami in his Knightmare Frame lookalike is unable to stop the Darkstone, so it’s up to Tandoji. Tandoji transforms even further this time, into a red humanoid… thingthat displays huge strength and little sanity, and pretty much whales on the statue. Completing this, he moves on to Ruri, but is stopped by a power of her own. She transforms him into a more heroic, human-like form that has sanity included.
Just in time, too, as an arm of the statue that was broken off earlier stealthily consumes the gem that was its target and transforms into a huge monster. Tandoji shows off his new power, fighting the monster in a fast-paced battle and managing to destroy it. GG Darkstone.
Tandoji’s character can pretty much be described as an antihero. Gifted with powers he doesn’t want, isolated from his peers, and only helping defeat the villain because of personal reasons. On the other hand, we have Ruri and Kagami turning many of their (extraordinarly large) resources towards fighting the Darkstones. It will be interesting seeing how the two contrasting sides mesh together – though of course, Ruri will eventually manage to convince Tandoji to fight against the Darkstones. Wouldn’t be a very exciting series otherwise. 😀
By far the worst part of this episode was the lack of information that had me pretty much perpetually confused. From the in media res beginning to the inexplicable transformations of the end, we had no idea about why stuff happened. Darkstones, Tandoji’s powers, his transformations, Ruri’s powers, why Tandoji knows how to use the weapons of his last transformation, that weird hellstone character, the dark character who appeared in the very beginning and very end, blah blah. The whole episode was in media res, and that made it far less cool as it could have been. Hopefully all these things will be explained.
Disregarding my confusion caused by the lack of info, the episode seemed to me a lot like a prologue – sort of like a ‘the story starts now’ feeling at the end of it. Tandoji coming out of his period of isolation and entering the clubroom with the other characters seemed like a new beginning for him, a beginning for his story involving Ruri and Kagami and Wakana. Moreover, he only managed to get his heroic transformation form from Ruri at the later part of the episode – before that, he was closer to a villain, with his violent uncontrolled transformations whenever he got mad. On a tangent, it would be interesting as well as deep if part of the plot were about Tandoji trying to control his rage after transformation – though it seems like that won’t be a factor if Ruri’s around with her power.
A reasonable first episode, solid action and nice character designs. I’ll be watching the next few.