Radiant Episode 1 [First Impression]
Ever since Crunchyroll Expo I’ve been pretty excited for this series. Especially after I learned that the screenwriter for this series also did screenwriting for my favorite series, Assassination Classroom. And it’s also been done by the same animation studio, Lerche. Though I think it’s more impressive that this was originally a French manga. And the fact that it was made into an anime in Japan just shows how big of an influence anime really is becoming.
The episode starts off with an explanation of what goes on in the world. With demon like creatures called Nemesis that bring disaster wherever they go and whoever they touch either die or become cursed. The only ones who can stand up against the Nemesis (heh) were the ones who lived through having made contact with one before. Now, I’m already intrigued by this little introduction. Especially since I’m a sucker for cursed individuals who are often ostracized by society.
The quote in the beginning “People are not born human. They become human” was pretty interesting. And it makes you think. What truly makes someone a human? Since there has been so much media already that show human to be more of the monsters. After reading the that introductory message at the beginning, I already had a feeling that the Sorcerers were going to be alienated by regular people, especially since they are “cursed” by the Nemesis.
We meet Seth, the main protagonist of the story and already, he feels like the typical “shounen hero boy.” Hopefully he can actually grow into a character of his own and not have me refer to him as Naruto or Natsu. However, I really like Alma so far, a sorcerer and Seth’s current caretaker. I also love Romi Park so hearing her voice from Alma makes her even greater. Her relationship with Seth feels like the typical older caretaker having to watch over the rowdy youngster. However, I really like how much Seth seems to have a large respect for Alma as a sorcerer. Especially when it becomes half of the reason he wants to destroy all the Nemesis so that regular people would respect and accept people like Alma. Honestly, I’m not quite sure how I feel about Seth since his reasons for being a great sorcerer are a little too one dimensional.
And was it just me or was I the only one who didn’t realize Alma was missing an arm until my second watch through… Whoops.
Now that My Hero Academia has wrapped up the season for now, I feel like I need some sort of Shounen Adventure to tide me over and so far Radiant seems to be just the thing. While it hasn’t shown anything particularly amazing, I just absolutely love the fantasy setting and it makes me want to learn more about this world. Especially what exactly the Nemesis are and how someone even becomes a sorcerer. They explained that Sorcerers are people who survive coming into contact with one, but don’t quite explain what exactly that entails. And just overall, this series seems to be a lot of fun.
But man, when a Nemesis egg fell into the town and Seth gathers all of the things to take it down my immediate response was: OH NO THIS WON’T END WELL. NO NO NO NO. And I was right, Seth just did not have the power to take on a Nemesis and was immediately taken out. However, he still had enough strength to stop the Nemesis from killing one of the town kids. Though I have to admit, the sounds the Nemesis made was FREAKY. From the groaning to that weird sharp noise (that sounds like a stock sound from one of those dramatic cooking shows lol) that accompanied it when it moves.
I look forward to learning more about this world, especially when it gives me Seven Deadly Sins and One Piece vibes. Though it may not turn out to be as good as Seven Deadly Sins, it’s definitely a setting that I really like. So far, nothing is inherently bad about the series and the main character is tolerable (for now lol). Though I have to admit I really like his design. I eagerly await to see what this French-based anime will bring to the table.
Possibility of Watching: High
Possibility of Blogging: High
As someone who’s always eagerly searching for a new shounen to hook onto, Radiant caught my eye pretty quickly when it was announced. After watching the first episode, I’m glad to see it sticks to its shounen routes quite well. A protagonist striving to become the strongest, a tough love mentor who genuinely cares for her student, and ostracization from the locals! It all comes together to form a union of tropes that make Radiant a purist shounen.
The setting stood out to me immediately, a vibrant town with beautiful greenery in all directions. The scenery is gorgeous and the town practically screams peace and tranquility. Is our protagonist taking in the view and slowly strolling through the cobblestone paths? Of course not, he’s a shounen protagonist, he’s jumping across rooftops instead.
Seth is relatively tame at the moment, and is like many other shounen heroes we’ve seen in the past. He wishes to become a strong sorcerer and purge the world of the Nemesis, but as of now, he’s at a laughable strength. He’s got the hothead and golden heart, and I’m sure he has an iron stomach as well. Nothing in the episode one really proved him to be anything more than a generic shounen character, but there was also nothing particularly bad about him either. He’s a bit dumb, but most shounen characters have to be a bit dumb to fit their ideals. Hopefully Seth reaches the heights of characters like Yusuke or Luffy rather than Asta. I must admit though, his magic punch early in the episode reminded me very strongly of Gon’s Janken from Hunter x Hunter.
The other characters include his mentor Alma and a young town boy named Tommy. Alma is the classic hardass mentor for our soft hearted protagonist, and she’s quite loveable of a character. Her design alone is enough to earn respect, particularly her missing right arm, but she gets even better as the episode goes on. She’s someone who understands how society approaches sorcerers, since she’s been through it for so long. She almost seems disappointed telling Seth about how everyone fears them, almost as if she wants to preserve the naive ideals Seth clings onto. But the worst part about Seth’s mentor being someone genuinely interesting is that I’m very worried for her well being. Perhaps the show is going for a happier vibe than say the likes of Attack on Titan, but it’ll be devastating if Alma has to go. Hope not!
Tommy is the other important character, a village boy who hangs out with Seth. While the other towns folk have deemed it good to ignore and avoid the sorcerers, Tommy’s childlike curiosity and interest in magic has made him good friends with Seth. Going against the beliefs of his parents and townsfolk, he idolizes and jokes around with Seth as a little brother would. It’s a sweet relationship, and it becomes quite clear through their banter that they’re good friends.
This friendship is demonstrated towards the end of the episode when the Nemesis egg crashed into the town. While the townsfolk quickly change their minds about sorcerers, almost begging for them to come and save the day, Seth crashes down in full gear. But we all knew what was coming. It’s episode one, no way our protagonist can beat a Nemesis yet. I was scared that the show would take a dark turn and the Nemesis would go on a killing spree through the town, but that’s just Goblin Slayer getting to me.
As Seth struggles to fight the Nemesis, Tommy runs through the crowd and approaches the hulking brute. He quickly realizes he’s in danger but distracts the Nemesis long enough for Seth to barely recover. Seth heroically jumps in the way of danger for Tommy, blocking a fist that probably weighs like three tons. How else can we demonstrate the golden heart of Seth?
As things grow dire, Seth does not power up through the strength of friendship. Instead he gets crushed even harder, until a squad of sorcerer’s arrive to save the day. Leading the charge is a magical All Might with a beard, dressed in tights and rocking a great beard. Hopefully the townsfolk appreciate their support and don’t blame them for damages or something.
Overall, the first episode is an interesting introduction to the world of Radiant, and establishes Alma and Seth quite well. Nothing sticks out as particularly amazing yet, but I have hope!
Chance of Watching: 95%
Chance of Blogging: 85%