Wednesday, 11 June 2014
FIRST IMPRESSIONS - PROBLEM CHILDREN ARE COMING FROM ANOTHER WORLD, AREN'T THEY?
I know right? Longest series title in history, but oh so worth it...
At first, I wasn't going to watch this. As I mentioned, if a title sounds lame or unexciting, I usually just skip it, but I am so freaking glad I took a chance with this one. To save my aching fingers, I'll shorten it to PCFW. What I expected to see and what I finally saw couldn't have been further from each other. Bunny ears girl on the poster, I was expecting some fanservicey spectacular, instead I get the coolest badass EVER!
The plot for PCFW is interesting enough: Three children, Sakamaki Izayoi, Kudō Asuka, and Kasukabe Yō all live rather boring and unexciting lives. All three are strangers at the start with the only thing they have in common being that they each possess some kind of psychic power. Even though it was the most used throughout the first episode, I couldn't figure out what Izayoi's ability actually does. At first I thought he was some kind of pyrokinetic, but then things shifted again. Asuka's powers seem to allow her to control other lifeforms with words. Kasukabe can talk to animals. Of the three, hers sucks the most in my opinion. Back to the story, the three live dull lives until they receive an envelope one day transporting them to Little Garden, a place of supernatural powers called Gifts. The folks who live there, play high-stakes games known as Gift Games in order to earn wealth and prestige for their respective communities.
"Are those ears real?" "Yes." "Maybe we should all check just to be sure."
Now the games can range from battles to card games to any kind of game based on either luck or skill. The sky is the limit. That I like. We're also introduced to Black Rabbit, a chick with rabbit ears and just to make sure they're not cosplaying, every character feels the urge to test the declaration for themselves. Black Rabbit spends an unusually large amount of time explaining the rules of Little Garden to both the protagonists and the audience, but due to some fantastic deadpan snarking by Izayoi and the others, I wasn't bored by the bag of exposition.
"I hate fifty-two pickup!!!!"
Speaking of the characters, they all seem really animated - in a good way. You're not supposed to take PCFW seriously. It is a fantasy comedy, but I liked how all the characters were really laid-back and relatable - except Izayoi. I wish I could be that smooth and cool. Arrogant, but with a sharp intelligence that makes his bragging seem more like a birthright. Josh Grelle voices some of my favorite characters, but Izayoi might just be my favorite. Seriously, Grelle makes Izayoi sound ten times more baddass. Spot on! I also liked Jessica Calvello's Black Rabbit character who is immediately turned into the show's butt monkey - mostly by Grelle's Izayoi, but all the characters seem to gang up on her on occasion. I don't know, maybe all the protagonists in this show are secretly sadists.
"Be glad you weren't playing strip poker!"
The visuals and animation in this show look fantastic. I'm not someone who nitpicks these things, but I know what I like. The character who has the best look would have to be Kasukabe. That outfit just screams awesome. Coming in second is Asuka's weid shrine-maiden inspired look. I have no idea if those are actual headphones or some other device stuck to Izayoi's ears, but it kinda makes him look like a gogglehead.
It's still very early in the show, but I really liked how little fanservice there was in this episode. Apart from the bunny girl which isn't that attractive and some boob jokes that were more entertaining than perverse, there wasn't anything cringe worthy. PCFW is really a show I can just sit down and enjoy without any hassles. A lot of shows these days, both live and anime are really serious. As I'm not much of a harem fan and the jokes in sitcoms nowadays dry up quickly for me, I need a show like this to just laugh at. It needs to be entertaining and fun at the same time!
Rating this first episode: 8/10. Instead of a death-in-the-family back-story, when asked what their motivations were for participating in the games, the characters gave 'because I want to have fun'. Make of that what you will.