Friday, 4 July 2014


Future Diary meets Digimon and Pokemon. Uhhh...

Generally, when I decide to watch something, I search for a cool sounding title. Eight times out of ten, I get it right and what I watch is an absolute masterpiece. Call it intuition, call it luck, but whatever the case, titles are the first step to impressing an audience. Now when I heard about Devil Survivor, I thought that it sounded freaking boss. Remember the eight out of ten I mentioned earlier? Well this is one of the other two times.

"I don't even want to know what the two ladies in the background are imagining."

We're introduced to Hibiki and Daichi, the protagonists who are stressing about college entrance exams when Daichi shows Hibiki this new phone app called Dead Face. Signing up means that whenever one of your friends who is also registered on Dead Face is killed, a clip of their dead face is streamed to your phone. Now this was my first WTF moment. Why the hell would you want to see how your friends looked just before they died? If any of my friends registered for this crap, I'd delete them from my contacts immediately!

As it turns out, Dead Face doesn't just show you how your friends looked just after they died, it shows you the last few seconds before they die which is what happens to Hibiki and Daichi later in the subway. Now this is where the Future Diary reminder came in. It feels very much like that only instead of being messaged as to how you're gonna die, a video is shown. Different, but the comparison was so freaking obvious that it felt so ripped off. Made worse as I adore Future Diary!

"You want to see what I'd look like when I die? Wait! What?"

Soon after, Hibiki, Daichi and their new female friend Lo get phone upgrades that allows them to summon demons to fight for them. That's the Digimon part and the Pokemon part comes in later when it's made clear that they can summon more than one type of monster. Now this mix of ideas really didn't sit well with me. It was as though too many things were trying to be set up. You have the Future Diary-like app on your phone, phone-shaped Pokeballs and attacks on the city by random creatures. Plus did I mention the super secret organization who already know about these creatures? Far too many stuff going on.

I suppose that's not really an issue as it may mean that all these plot strands will evolve into a more complex story, but generally when I watch anime, I try to look for something with a more mature or psychological aspect. Generally, but exclusively. Future Diary's unique time traveling, out-gambit-me survival game was like this. Even though I used to watch both Digimon and Pokemon when I was ten, now the idea of a bunch of monsters fighting each other bores me to tears. It may appease younger fans, but not me unfortunately.

"I know this Digimon. It's Baihumon!"

Talking about the characters themselves, I found Daichi to be the most fun to watch. Greg Ayres does a pretty boss job with the character. As for Hibiki, he comes across as intelligent, but a little bland. Although, of three main characters, he looks the coolest. His gear (slang for clothes) really makes him stand out. I'm a sucker for white. Patrick Poole voices Hibiki and Jessica Boone voices Lo. Lo doesn't really do much but worry for most of her screen time, but that can be forgiven as the first episode is really more about Daichi and Hibiki. Sorry I keep saying Daichi and Hibiki as opposed to Hibiki and Daichi. That just goes to show you how much I prefer the latter.

"I'll admit that Hibiki looks like a freaking badass with one glowing arm like that."

If my ten-year old self had tuned in to Devil Survivor 2, I'm sure that I'd be glued to the screen for the whole series. I know Devil Survivor is definitely something ten-year old me would've loved. It's more mature than both Pokemon (let's be honest, nobody watches that crap nowadays) and Digimon (let's be honest, it's never been the same ever since Digimon Frontier).

Rating the first episode: 6.5/10. Really weird and unusual mix of ideas swimming around, but not my particular cup of tea.

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