Friday, 13 November 2015
FIRST IMPRESSIONS - ATTACK ON TITAN: JUNIOR HIGH
Attack on Titan + Junior High + Slice of Life = Hilarity!
Let me just get this out of the way first: I had no interest in seeing Attack on Titan: Junior High. While I adore Attack on Titan, I was one of those people who saw this parody spin-off as nothing other than a cheap way to get the franchise going. But boy am I glad I tuned in!
The broadcast dub for the first episode premiered earlier this week and I must say that after about three minutes, I wanted to binge watch the whole series. The show is so adorably comedic that not laughing probably means you’re missing a funny bone somewhere. The series excels at taking the p*ss out of the proper animated series, highlighting key moments like Potato Girl’s potato/rice ball scene and just doing everything it can to make it a hundred times more funny.
"Chibi Mikasa looks so cute!"
Every one of the characters are exaggerations of their alter ego, save Eren who manages to stay exactly the same (except for the chibi form), but strangely enough, his famous impulsive, Titan obsessed personality (this time stemming from an incident where the Colossal Titan stole his lunch) work much better when it’s being milked for humor. Other characters include Mikasa who more openly loves Eren and spends a lot of the time either “saving” him or thinking of ways to get him to notice her, Krista, who serves as an even shier moe, innocent fanservice girl, Ymir, who more openly obsesses over Krista, Jean, who serves as Eren’s sparring partner and serves as the love triangle guy for the whole Eren/Misaka/Jean subplot.
Armin is surprisingly absent from the episode. The only trace of him being the opening narration which is a comedic retake from that iconic first scene with the “human as cattle” speech. If I had to choose something to dislike about this episode, the lack of Armin would fit the bill. More Armin please!
"Slay that Titan Eren! Slay that SOB!"
The plot is not nearly as interesting as Attack on Titan, instead exploring the various hijinks one would expect to find in a Slice of Life parody. What is impressive is the soundtrack, which reuses the original soundtrack used for Attack on Titan, choosing moments to play opportune, climatic tracks over mundane sequences which serves to make the scenes in question even funnier. Serious, ominous music combined with silly over dramatization equals comedy gold!
Having Bryce Papenbrook back as Eren is awesome, given that he's a Los Angeles based VA and Funimation is based in Texas and these dubs go out weekly. The fact the Funimation kept the original voice when recasting would’ve made more sense (production and logistically) just speaks volumes to how much effort they put in making these dubs.
"In a world where Titans eat your lunches, is it a good idea having all those bentos out in the open like that?"
Just like Attack on Titan, the cast of Funimation do an outstanding job with this dub. The script is clever, the comedic delivery is perfect and the performances are incredible all across the board.
Given the quality of the animation, the scenes and the English performances, what turns into a shame is how short these episodes are. Given the magnitude named above, it only makes you want to watch more.
Rating this first impression: 9/10