Welcome, weebs, to Animated Observations
Listen, listen. I’m not saying you should expect a random hiatus from me every once and a while, but I am saying my brand is kind of built on inconsistency ;). In all seriousness though, I do apologize for being gone. I have had a lot going on, from my sister’s graduation, my grandmother coming to visit from out of state, and my cousin getting married. Plus, I have been trying to scratch my competitive itch by climbing the ranked ladder in Hearthstone and competing for a spot in the upcoming master’s tour events.
As I’ve been getting back into the swing of things, I was reminded, as I usually am, that their are approximately one billion shows that I have started up and have not finished. Not that this list will ever actually shrink in size, but I figured since I was not as interested in catching up on seasonal stuff at the moment, I would try and watch something else. Ultimately, I settled on “Fire Force” for a few reasons.
First, the artwork and character designs are ones that I really like. Those who have followed me for any length are probably aware that I make it a point to re-watch “Soul Eater” every year. Needless to say, I am a big fan of Atsushi Okubo’s work. The premise is also notably darker than his previous work. Whereas “Soul Eater” often feels like a typical Shonen with a horror aesthetic, the premise of Fire Force comes off as legitimately terrifying in a way that “Soul Eater” does not achieve.
However, the thing that initially turned me off to the series was, above all else, its fanservice. Like, yeah, Shonen anime generally has fanservice and often uses its female main characters as readily available punchlines in comedic misunderstandings, I get it. Still, I was hoping a series with a premise as bleak and unforgiving as this one might forgo that kind of humor.
As of writing this post, I am roughly three quarters of the way through the first season. I can say with no hesitation that I am very much still enjoying the series. The action has been amazing, the reveals and character development are solidly a step above the average shounen series. I will admit, I was mostly wrong to say that the show was not worth watching. With that being said, the fan service is still bad and totally nonsensical.
The best example of this thus far is the end of the show’s second arc. Shinra and a few others are assigned to train at Fire Force Branch 1 in order to investigate a potential suspect in the creation of artifical infernals. As it turns out, that person is Rekka Hoshimiya, one of the commanders of division one. Shinra ends up confronting Rekka and the two fight. However, while Shinra is in the middle of fighting a CHILD MURDERER, he “accidentally” gets punched into Tamaki’s chest not once, but twice.
Before I get any comments along these lines, I am not asking that fanservice be removed entirely from Shonen. Relieving tension in between serious scenes is important so that the whole series in not dowered in a depressive mood. I would even go as far as to argue that comedic misunderstandings like these could be used to hint at deeper relationships between characters.
Regardless, I do that think it is a lot to ask from h writers to maintain some level of tonal consistency when it comes to their fight scenes. In other words, at the very least, save the fanservice for after the fight is over, rather than during a scene where Shinra is fighting, and I cannot stress this enough, a literal CHILD MURDERER.
Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk.
How do you all feel about “Fire Force” and Fanservice? Let me know in the comments below.
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