This is the Review for my Monthly Watch, for a synopsis of this Anime please see my older post: here
Eureka Seven AO Review
It’s been six years since Eureka Seven Psalms of Planets ended, and Bones finally made a sequel. I would have given this show five stars if it wasn’t for the fact that you need to have seen the original in order to understand much of what’s going on. If Eureka Seven AO perhaps better defined the situations or enemies taking place in the show, watching or reading the original may not have been entirely necessary. The show, much like the original, has a rocky and slightly uninteresting start where they fill your head with terminology used in the universe that isn’t explained very well so it’s easy to become confused. Eureka Seven AO is only 25 episodes long so it’s easy to fit into a week or two, which is good for those of us who sometimes find it hard to set time aside to watch Anime. The downside to this is that sometimes I felt like some of the episodes were rushed to meet the 25 episode limit.
The series takes some of the core concepts of Eureka Seven, it takes the definition of Trappar and Corallian, it grabs the son of the two lead characters of Eureka Seven, puts him into a completely different location and even time. Then they kind of just go with it as they try to explain what the hell is going on as it goes along. Where Eureka Seven focused on showing children’s naivety, this series instead focuses on forcing children into the center of conflict, while emphasizing that they do not belong there in the slightest.
After a bit of a warm-up period, this show just delivers plot twist after plot twist. It’s a really good suspense series that keeps you wondering what’s going to happen next. The series has a lot of interesting ideas and twists that come from out of nowhere and give completely different turns to what the plot was before.
I mean, back with Un-Go, that was a series that had perfect control of its fast pacing. Ao does not, and there are quite a few plot holes. On the other hand though, there are plenty of moments that might seem ludicrous, only to make sense when you start thinking about it. A lot of the plot twists aren’t explicitly explained, or require the viewer to constantly pay attention to what’s going on. This series in no way holds your hand, and you definitely cannot watch it when you’re tired, otherwise you’ll miss stuff. After watching an episode you may need to take a break to comprehend what you just watched. It’s all about the suspense of disbelief for this series.
The characters, who may not be as good as the cast of Eureka Seven, are still very likable, diverse and entertaining, and this show is also full of unexpected character-development. What I really enjoyed with this series that no other series has done, is how it treats the old characters of the first series. Out of all the sequels I have seen that focus more on different characters than the first; this is by far the best use of the old cast. They are used at the right moments, and this show pays homage to them, yet also shows their flaws. It shows who they turned into after the end of the series, and it gives them their own storylines that are more than just “let us old guys just watch over you new guys”.
This is a very ambitious series. You can also see this though the production values, which were some of the most consistent of the year for an action series, containing a lot of fluid and fast-paced action scenes and a really good soundtrack. Although this ambition does have its prices to pay with the rushed plot that is easy to get bored with.
Storytelling: 9/10 I love the ambition of this series for delivering as many plot twists as possible that attempt to weave a whole storyline together. Great suspense, though the rushed pacing and plot holes will be a turn-off for some. I’m not too happy with the direction of the Eureka Seven universe but I still enjoyed what I watched.
Characters: 8.5/10 Great use of the old Eureka Seven cast, enjoyable and gripping cast of both main and side characters, although the cast is too big for every character to really show his/her best. Some characters get lost for a few episodes and then they pop up again and you’ll be asking yourself where you saw them before.
Production Values: 9/10 Great production values, excellent soundtrack, really fluid animation at times.
Setting: 8.5/10 Takes the setting of Eureka Seven, expands upon it, turns it into something completely different and completely changes what it stands for. Might be hard to swallow for fans of the first series hoping for the same as the series takes place in a completely different setting.