K Episode 1 [First Impression]: No Blood, No Bone, No Ash
On the streets, a group led by the psychic Suoh Mikoto abducts and threatens an English-speaking businessman until they prove he knows nothing, leading them to leave the area. Near the entrance, they come in contact with the Blues led by the psychic user Munakata, who engages in battle with Mikoto using their sanctums. Elsewhere, a boy named Isana Yashiro is given a shopping errand from the student council and heads out to buy the requested fireworks when he is suddenly targeted by the Reds, who chase him through the streets of the city until he is saved by “Black Dog” Yatogami Kuroh, who points a sword at him straight after, naming him as the colourless King.
That was certainly a lot to take in – but I’d expect no less from such an anticipated show. Both the hype and the marketing of the show have been blown out of proportion, and I actually recall some article mentioning that K would air simultaneously all over Asia, during the same block as Japan. I have no idea about how subbing would work then, but there was (bad) Engrish, and the overall plot wasn’t too hard to figure out. In the world of psychic users, a battle royale is occurring in which seven kings fight it out with their opposing factions, with the aim of – uh, I don’t think there is one, or they haven’t revealed it yet in any case.
The Third King, Suoh Mikoto is one such psychic user, and he has a REALLY cool gang of badasses that I’ll just call the Reds for convenience’s sake. He seems to be on the lawless side of things, and I’m not sure whether to label him an antagonist or just someone that happens to appear in a villainous role for the time being as we really have no idea about where the factions lie on the spectrum, who they have allegiances with and what their goals are. In terms of power level he and his group seem really strong (despite him having been captured at the end) and I have a feeling he is one to fear in this war. I’m going to call it now – the loli is going to turn out to be amazing, complete with her psychic marble abilities and all. Yeah, no bias here, heh… Their motto “no blood, no bone, no ash” probably refers to leaving no trace when they burn their enemies – to the point where there’s nothing left of them. Mikoto’s sanctum (presumably his bankai, killer move, special power) is the Sword of Damocles, and was able to go head-to-head with what I think was another king - the leader of the Blues (hence why Mikoto’s group were the Reds), Munakata. The term “Scepter 4″ was thrown around somewhere as well, and given that it’s the first episode I’m not sure who it refers to, most probably the Blues though. I recognized Sawashiro Miyuki’s voice somewhere, who is a seiyuu I’ve come to absolutely love recently. She has a really unique voice that can somehow play such a wide range of roles and voice types. Anyway, Mikoto vs Munakata will probably become some kind of plot point later on, with it being featured in the OP as well as this first episode. Epic sword battle go!
The U-turn to a school setting wasn’t entirely unexpected (what kind of anime has no school, nowadays) though a clash between our protagonist Isana Yashiro (Shiro for short) and the psychic guys was pretty much inevitable. Shiro himself is one of those guys who is really approachable and friendly, but when it comes down to it you don’t really know much about him at all. I suppose I like him enough, though then again we hardly know anything about him right now. To say he had a dark past may be a massive understatement – the two possible scenarios for his claiming to be the Colourless King yet knowing nothing about the psychic world may be either because he had his memories and abilities wiped, or if he was framed. It’s hinted that Mikoto may have been the one to set him up like that, and his entire faction look like they have a bone to pick with Shiro. The baseball bat guy is scary, by the way. Imagine how painful getting hit by a psychic-infused metal bat must be. I also wouldn’t put it past Yatogami Kuroh, the “Black Dog” to be Shiro’s protector and mentor instead of his killer, given both what the OP sequence shows and that he saved him from the Reds this episode. Pretty much a truckload of questions were opened today.
You can tell that a lot of money was injected into this. The entire thing is beautifully produced, and there’s quite a lot of scenery porn for an episodic show. The futuristic setting helped, and is similar to something like Accel World – everyone uses electronics in class, and holograms or other media seem to be common now. The soundtrack is the epitome of classy and refined – there’s something about the drum beat that appears really often that seems more…calm jazzy compared to the frantic music it accompanies. The OST is almost reminiscent of visual novels (who have superior OSTs to aid the experience) making this a musical gem.
Other than the slight Touhou vibes I got right at the beginning, I could liken this to DRRR! a lot – not just because of the Shizuo lookalike, but also because of the urban setting. We could do with a night-life backdrop, but a place where colourful inhabitants run amok under the surface of a bustling city is enough to tell me that it has the makings of a good show. Plus, there’ll apparently be some Neko next week. Yes, the naked cat girl that randomly went across the screen for a moment there. What, the cat on Shiro’s arm? I have no idea, but it’s possible…
Possibility of Watching: Guaranteed
Possibility of Blogging: Yes, even if it kills me. Which is actually quite likely.
Eva’s First Impression:
I’m just.. holy… cow… I’m speechless to be honest. I had to sit back and think about just, how was I going to write my thoughts?
The entire time I watched this, the art, the camera techniques, oh my god- was just absolutely breathtaking and spectacular. I can’t even describe how impressed and awed I was! The animation, oh my god, from the backgrounds to the characters to the vibrant colors, all of it is literally eye candy! Here I was sitting back in my seat, my eyes wide as I’m trying to absorb all this, I felt that if I blinked I was going to miss something beautiful. I couldn’t take my eye off it. Heck I’m not going to lie, if there weren’t any dialogues, I can probably guarantee this show would still be a massive hit just because the animation is so mind-blowing! I especially love the fights, I’m really, really looking forward to the big ones in the future. I’m very excited, it’s going to be awesome!!!! Now for the background music: as I mentioned in the Fall Pre-Impressions, without a doubt this show’s OST is already a masterpiece. I find it absolutely magnificent how they managed the transitions between the tracks.
The story is pretty vague right now, but we do know one thing. It appears gangs are pretty hot in the city (much like Durarara), and Yashiro (otherwise identified as Shiro) suddenly finds himself in this mess because he looks to be the King who murdered an acquaintance of Mikoto (who is currently in prison). He’s not denying it either, so this is definitely going to be interesting to see how or whether or not he’s connected, or the guy himself.
Oh and that’s right, before I forget: It seems that only Shiro (for the time being) is able to see Neko since students in the hallway didn’t appear to notice presence… not to mention, being naked, ahahaha!
The Red Clan (lead by the Red King, Mikoto) seems to be a small group at the moment, but they certainly have wicked resources and skills (I mean they hacked the city’s monitors!!!), they also appear to be searching for someone or something. The cute girl, Anna who looks into some bead appears to be able to read the thoughts or mind of people, so this way she can tell whether they are telling the truth or not.
The security group or whatever; …lets call them Blues like Vantage did. The Blues… we don’t know much about them but for the time being we given the idea that they are hunting down Kings like Mikoto.
The engrish was a bit difficult to understand, shame I can’t read Japanese at the moment to take advantage of their subtitles.
Ahh… I feel like there’s more to talk about, but i can’t seem to put my finger on what. I wonder if I was too distracted by the animation, ahaha!
Without a doubt, and you can tell just by the amount of promotion this show had- a shitload of money has been invested into this production. If the plot fares well, and the quality keeps up, I’m quite sure their sales will be very promising. Lets just hope this show turns out great because… well, lets face it- recently all the shows that have been getting a shitload of promotion hasn’t actually lived up to our expectations… >_>;;;
Possibility of Blogging: Guaranteed … That is, if I don’t get too distracted by the animation in the future, I should be able to! XD I’ll give this a few episodes to see whether this is something I can confidently write about.
Possibility of Watching: Guaranteed
Tenderfoot’s First Impression:
Bring on the dissenting opinion! Unlike Eva and Vantage…I actually disliked K (or K Project or call it what you will). Keep in mind that the following is just my personal opinion, and I’m sorry I’m such a little rain cloud all the time, but there were a lot of things about this show that rubbed me totally the wrong way.
Let me start with this: You can take something unpleasant like lemons, or a rotten egg, or a dog turd and cover it with gold and jems and shiny stuff as much as you want, but that won’t change the fact that underneath it’s still a lemon (or a rotten egg or a dog turd). That is basically what this show was for me. A shiny, golden, jem encrusted piece of poop.
From the beginning, from the first shots of the Red Kings gang, I could tell that this show was going to go the style-over-substance route. Any show that spends that much time trying to convince me that a 10 second shot of someones wallet chain glinting in the sun is like the coolest thing ever clearly isn’t going to prioritize story or characters. This also goes for the fact that it needed two opening squences (why? just…why?)Everything is lens flares and shiny things and saturation at 200% and let’s play with color balances and filters in photoshop!
Ugh, it’s like this show was screaming at me “LOOK AT HOW COOL I LOOK GUYS!!! AREN’T I PRETTY? Let me distract you from the fact that my storyline is next to unexplained, there’s almost no meaningful dialouge that would give you any insite into who any of these characters are (I’m not kidding, more than half this show is silent except for the music), and the fact that I’m so obviously full of sterotypical characters and imagery that if you stop to think about it, it might make you a little sick. BUT HEY I LOOK NICE! SPARKLE SPARKLE!”
I literally have no idea what the story is (rival gangs with supernatural powers fight each other and the cops and the American mob and psychic powers and naked cat girls no one can see and kids on skateboards! I mean…you need to give me a little tiny bit of something to go on.)
Hand to God, by the end of the episode, and even now, I still don’t know any of the characters names and you know what, I’m fine with that. There’s the super-powerful red king, the cool blue sword fighter and his team (complete with blue flames), the loli type girl who hangs around, the yellow haired dude who hangs out at a bar al la Shizou from DRRR!, a cat girl, the rough skateboarder type, and then our protaganist (about whom I care exactly zero because he’s about as bland and personality free as the color beige) the innocent but maybe also crazy powerful white haired boy, and his protector/love interest (because, hey, we need to pander to those yaoi fangirls). They all go by so quickly and without any proper introduction, that they all blend together into one giant blob of pretty boys (No girls to speak of, except for the naked cat girl and that one throw-away girl obsessed with getting white haired boy to eat his veggies. Oh and the jail-bait little girl, but she barley counts). Couldn’t even give me one character to care about or even have a passing interested in? Not a good sign.
I think I’m alone in this but I though the music was the type of music someone came up with because they thought “This is what cool music sounds like” without having any idea what actually cool music sounds like. I found it very distracting, coming in as these half hip-hop and half jazz beats at awkward moments. It’s like it couldn’t settle on one type of music or even a theme to pull through the whole episode, so it just went for sounding generally discombobulated and all over the place. Opening and Ending weren’t anything to write home about.
There are literally a million other little things that annoyed the crap out of me about this show, and if you want me to go on I certainly will (leave me a note in the comments), but I think you get the general jist of it. It comes down to this for me: This show was trying waaaaay too hard to do too many things. Instead of focusing on doing one thing really well (like having a story that you actually give a shit about at the end of the first episode, or characters, or dialouge that was memorable) they decieded to throw in everything but the kitchen sink, which just has the effect of being horrible instead of awesome. Too many characters, too many colors, too many “cool” things, it was just way too much. Yes, it looks fantastic, but is that really enough? “You can’t always judge a book by it’s cover” cuts both ways; you can’t always count on your exterior to hide a vapid and weak story, populated by uninteresting, over-used, and frankly capital-B Boring character stereotypes Are people really going to come back week after week because it’s *pretty*? (probably, but that’s a sad fact of the world we live in) Thanks, but no thanks.
Possibility of Watching: Maybe for laughs. Or just to see how bad it gets.
Possibility of Blogging: I’ll leave that to the good folks who like this show
so you won’t have to deal with my ranting every week.
Linzz’s First Impression:
Okayyyyyy… I did expect an animation way beyond than the animes that I have watched so far and it did. It’s a new animation style where my eyes are adjusting to it. Also there are just some bad things about this episode. OTL
For a first episode, I am expecting for some explanation as to WHY IS THIS HAPPENING?! But I am very quite surprised by how the flow of the episode went although it wasn’t really into my linking. This is where “you expected too much” goes in pretty well. Compared to other action anime with supernatural touch that I’ve watched so far, this didn’t go beyond my normal standards than I had imagined it to be. As for a show that is the most anticipated by everyone, the first episode kind of let me down on most aspects.
Seizures, EVERYWHERE!!! The use of color combination to their animation is quite bad for my eyes. I thought that it was only the effect applied for the PV but it was for the whole animation?! OMG I dun think I’ll last a day watching this kind of animation… AT ALL. But for a once a week, it made me go through a sigh of relief. For some reason as someone who just happen to look out for this series today, I CAN’T RELATE AT ALL. That’s one let down for someone who have no idea what s/he is watching. LOL But for some, I would be able to grasp everything as episodes go by, hopefully.
DAT YOSHI AND KURO PAIRING OMG!!! D8
Possibility of Watching: Yes for the Yaoiness and bishies’ sake. 8D
Possibility of Blogging: Apparently, there are the other guys who would want to anyway. XD