Youjo Senki: Saga of Tanya the Evil Episode 1: The Devil of the Rhine (First Impression)
She is a monster in the form of a little girl.
She really is.
She takes out an entire company on her own and purposely lets those in her platoon get killed because they went against her orders. And she just smiles. She really is Tanya the Evil, the Devil of the Rhine, but I know that we’ve seen nothing yet.
For some reason this show wasn’t on my radar. I don’t know if this was added into the Winter lineup late or I just completely skipped it somehow when I was looking at the list, but I found out about this show when we did the preview for the blog. The synopsis was strange so that itself intrigued me. The PV sealed the deal, as I saw this little girl looking crazy flying around and shooting things. I still wasn’t sure what it was about, but after watching the first episode it’s pretty clear. Sort of.
The synopsis mentioned Tanya being a reincarnation of a Japanese salaryman, whose just a businessman right? We didn’t get any mention of that this episode. This episode just threw us straight into the war and battles so there’s mystery surrounding Tanya. She’s a strange sight in this show. She’s a short little girl who holds this hard and terrifying glare. She’s the lieutenant of a mage platoon and she’s deemed as the best mage, and it was evident as we saw what she did in the end of the episode. My question is how Tanya was able to join the Republic’s army. I’m sure we’ll see how when we find out how Tanya came to be, but it is strange seeing a little girl in the same ranks as a group full of grown men. The same can be said about Viktoriya.
The plot of the show is another war story set in Europe. We have the Empire (Germany) as our main setting. They have the best military and weaponry in the continent, but the twist this time is that for once, Germany isn’t invading others. The surrounding countries are invading Germany…uh, the Empire. So now the Empire is facing huge problems as countries all around them are invading, and the current plan is pushing the enemies away and stalling their advances, but it’s not working out as soldiers and mages are being killed left and right. That’s right, there are also mages, so magic exists in this world. It’s not really explained, it’s just there. I hope they explain how the magic actually works, because I want to know why Tanya was able to produce a ridiculous explosion in the end.
We’re thrown right into the battlefield right away. The episode gives us what we were explained, the characters facing off against the Republic (one of their enemies) and trying to drive them back. Things are looking bad as many men of the Empire are getting killed. Tanya and her/his(?) troops are fighting the best they can, but a couple of the mages head off and go against Tanya’s orders. She gets angry at them and decides to send them home, and when they disagree with her orders again, she makes a motion to unsheath her sword and kill them but Viktoriya, another platoon member, stops her. Tanya then sends them to the rear lines in a pillbox, and at first we’re made to think that Tanya went easy on their punishment, but we learn in the end that it was the opposite.
Tanya is an interesting character and I already want to learn more about her. Viktoriya seems to be another main character, and I’m not sure how I feel about her. She hasn’t made too much of an impact right now, but seeing as how she’s the only other female besides Tanya, I want to know how she got there too.
What stands out, and not really in a good way, are Tanya and Viktoriya’s designs. They look so out of place. The setting is dark and it has a muddy color. Everyone looks so serious and appropriate to this kind of show. And theeen we get a huge art change whenever Tanya and Viktoriya show up on screen. I went out to see what the art in the novels and manga looked like, and they’re pretty different. Tanya doesn’t really look all that different, but they really went all out in changing Viktoriya’s design. I actually prefer the art of the novels/manga because they actually blended in more with their environment, whereas in the anime they don’t. Tanya doesn’t bother me too much, but Viktoriya is kind of an eyesore. She just looks so strange. Her design just makes her look silly, like she belongs in a different type of anime. It was weird enough having a little girl cause destruction in a WWI type of war, but then seeing someone like Viktoriya there…makes everything weird. It’s just bothering me now. Also, I can’t stand Tanya’s voice. I don’t care how popular Aoi Yuuki is, I hate her voice this time.
Other than that, I really did like this episode. It was intense, the music was great (MYTH & ROID are doing the opening so that should be good shit), and the animation was very good! Studio NUT (lol) is a brand new studio, founded by the co-founder I think of Madhouse. So that itself makes me optimistic about this show. I don’t know if the animation will stay this good throughout but I’ll be hopeful. Even though I have my gripes about the art and the designs and Tanya’s voice, I enjoyed everything else. The plot is unique in a weird way, but that’s good because I like unique. I don’t know if the story will go any deeper, but I would at least like an in-depth look into Tanya’s character. Tanya…the Evil.
I’m looking forward to what this show will bring us.
Possibility of watching: Guaranteed
Possibility of blogging: Guaranteed