To many in the anime community, Black Clover’s first episode was seen as a huge disappointment. The show had a huge push behind it and Crunchyroll was really hoping it would do well. Unfortunately for them, the show has been met with almost universal criticism that it is just another generic Shonen with a lot of adaptation problems. Skip ahead two months though: has Black Clover gotten any better?
Well, I️ think that honestly depends on what exactly you mean by better. If by better, you mean good, than I’m going to ask you to calm down, take a seat and let me explain.
From the beginning, Black Clover didn’t really have a lot going for it. Many people were calling it a clone of Naruto, with Asta. a loner orphan who never gives up and wants to be the ruler of his kingdom, being the main character. Not exactly doing a great job at differentiating itself. Crunchyroll didn’t really help this in its push for the show, literally calling it the next Naruto on their website.
Unfortunately, Black Clover hasn’t been able to live up to this comparison. The show started with a lot of problems and hasn’t really been able to get rid of any of them. As Mother’s Basement pointed out in his recent video on the show, Black Clover has terrible pacing, seemingly speeding up and slowing down with no real rhyme or reason. Take episode 8, for example. The show spends almost 5 minutes just showing Asta cleaning up the Black Bulls base. By the end of the episode, we see him and Noelle get their first mission, but we don’t actually get to see any of the mission.
Oh, and let us not forget about the main man Asta himself. Granted, the show has only been on for 8 episodes and is going to be 51 total, but one would expect at least a little development or change to happen with the main character, especially considering that he became a Member of the Black Bulls. That’s just not the case, and let’s not forget to mention the incredible amount of times that Asta think’s its necessary to scream at the top of his lungs. Sure it’s tolerable by episode 5 or so, but only after you’ve heard it like 30 times.
Now, if your definition of better is that the show has improved since the first episode, then I think it’s fair to say yes. Since the first episode, we’ve gotten a little taste of the show’s action. When Asta gets to the Kingdom’s capital in order to become a magical knight, part of the exam that he must take involves a one on one battle with one of the other examinees. Now, the fight literally only lasted a minute, but I would be lying if I said that it wasn’t one of the things that kept me watching. No matter how much I try to deny it, seeing Asta swing around his giant sword makes me want to see what is going to happen next, especially when it comes to finding out the root of his powers.
It would also be disingenuous of to not mention the other members of the Black Bulls. Their addition to the cast, while not being the best side characters, certainly make it more bearable than just having Asta on screen for a full 20 minutes by himself. Noelle and Magna especially seem like they are going to be worthwhile characters.
While I’m not optimistic about Black Clover, I haven’t given up hope either. There have been plenty of show’s before that started off kind of week but got a lot stronger as they went on, and hopefully, Black Clover can end up in that same category.
What do you think of Black Clover so far? Love it? Hate it? Is there stuff that I didn’t mention that it needs to work on? Let me know in the comments below. Thanks for reading and bye for now, Friendos!