Wooo, its time for a brand new season of anime. Most everything from last season has now concluded, and we’ve got ourselves a brand new line up dropping. Hell there’s even a new Fate/ series on the docket, to tide us over until the Heaven’s Feel movies start dropping. Based on a video game for the PSP, Fate/Apocrypha is coming to us from the wonderful hands over at ufoTable, the studio that breathed new life into the franchise with their adaptations of Fate/Zero and Unlimited Blade Wo… What? What do you mean ufoTable isn’t handling this?
Who is then?
Okay, think positive J-Dawg, it’s okay. So what if A-1 has released some of the worst shows of the last few years, it’s okay, it’s fine. It’s an adaptation of a Fate/Story, the people involved in writing them out are pretty good at what they do. It isn’t like they’re adapting a Light Novel, hahahahaha.
Okay, look, I’ve watched the first two episodes and I enjoyed them thoroughly. Character designs aren’t nearly as awkward and same-facey as most A-1 productions tend to be, which is probably down to these characters already having a pretty well defined designs prior to this production, and the voice acting is pretty solid all around, especially Shirou, taking a turn at being a scheming priest over his usual schtick as a Hero of Justice.
The cinematography is, adequete. There’s some awkward camera angles, mostly in the fight scenes, but its not bad for an A-1 pictures production.
Even if there’s some pretty… A-1y things in here.
Even with that said, at the very least its MILES ahead of the Studio DEEN adaptations of /Stay Night and /Unlimited Blade Works, so there’s that I suppose.
But, surprisingly enough, my biggest sticking point with this isn’t actually in any of the A-1isms, although I do have a few minor nitpicks such as the fights looking a bit subpar after half a decade of /Zero and /Unlimited Blade Works 2014 licking my eyes with all of the pretty, pretty particle effects and fluid as balls choreography.
No my issue is with the fact that, come the end of episode 2 we know the identity of every single servant that we’ve met up to this point. Which is 12 of them, and that, for me, is an issue.
People straight up just say the names of their servants, or the servants themselves announce to the world who they happen to be, which isn’t exactly the way things tend to go in these stories. The identity of the servants not only add to the intrigue of the story, they can also be used to craft some beautiful moments of drama and character depth. Concealing Beserker/Zero’s identity right up to the end makes for a gut punch of a reveal, and gets us crying and screaming at the screen, sympathising with the characters on the in front of us.
Its just good story telling, you guys.
Here in Apocypha, nope. Everyone’s names are given, the probably-good guys-and-shifty-Shiro are already aware of the enemy Lancer’s identity and there’s just no drama to these reveals. People are having a conversation, and just randomly blurt out their servant’s identities. That or the servants themselves will just tell people who they are, and that’s just… Just no fun.
Mordred though, now she’s Hella Fun.
Quick Side Note while I’ve got you. Fate/Apocrypha will be officially streaming on Netflix from November 7th, 2017, and while I don’t like advocating piracy, unless you live in Japan proper there’s no legit way to watch it just yet outside of living in Japan and watching it on TV, I’m not going to condemn anyone for going the less than legal route.
Even so, I highly advocate supporting the official release once Netflix pulls the finger out and puts up the first 13 episodes at the beginning of November.
Also if, for some reason, a staffer from Netflix is reading this; (Unlikely) anime viewers want to watch this stuff on release, guys. We exist as a community that likes to discuss these things week to week, to compare and contrast our opinions on the shows as well as positing up some theory crafting on the side. By holding the shows you get the rights to hostage until the entire thing is released (And sometimes not even then *Cough* Little Witch Academia *Cough*) you drive people to a state where they’re more likely to pirate simply because they want to join in on the discussion week to week, like I said. Not everything needs to be released whole seasons at a time. Sometimes its okay to just release shows on a week to week basis.