Sunday, July 10, 2011
Manga4life reviews "Chrome Shelled Regios"
Chrome Shelled Regios. What can I say? Some loved it, some hated it, and some found it to be mildly entertaining, I guess I enjoyed it enough to say that I liked it but the strength of this series was more about the likable characters more so than the plot. Today I’m going to write a review of an anime series called Chrome Shelled Regios and it isn’t going to be easy, I find it to be hard for me to write about a show that has such interesting characters and such a basic and somewhat uninspired plot, but here it is and I hope you enjoy.
I first saw this show in subbed format which is strange for me since I usually always hold out for the English dub, but something about this show dragged me in during it’s original run back in mid 2009 and I’m glad that I got a chance to get acquainted with it back then because it really doesn’t look like a show that I would be interested in buying on DVD. I was greeted by a program that offered some of the most likable characters I’ve seen in a series that wasn’t long running and I was drawn in by the relationships and bonds that formed so early on between the members of the cast, characters such as Felli, Layfon, and Nina really shined throughout the duration of this show and I felt like I bonded with Felli the most. Before we get too much into the characters I figured I would tackle the basic plot of Chrome Shelled Regios first, it’s a fairly basic plot but in many ways it worked and I liked the things they were able to do with the show, this is no grand opus by any stretch of the imagination but it was certainly a program that I would recommend to those looking to fill a void or take a chance on something that they normally wouldn’t watch. The story introduces us to Layfon Alsief, a young man with a troubled past, as he enters into school as a new student. He meets up with Nina, Felli and some of the other members of the 17th Platoon and after a series of events finds himself becoming a member of the squad, although reluctantly due to his other activities such as a part-time job. As the series progresses the Platoon meets other Platoon’s on the field of friendly school battle and Nina spends most of her time training and throwing hissy fits over how poorly her team stands up against other squads, to add to that Felli finds that she has a crush on Layfon and tries early on to get close to him although he usually remains distant from the rest of the team due to his low-key demeanor. As the teams in the different Platoon’s find themselves fighting among each other and competing for school glory the weird town/orb thing that they all live in finds itself in a time of trouble as monsters and visitors from the outside find their way in to cause trouble.
This show started off very entertaining for me because of the great animation and the fun characters but unfortunately after the first 12-13 episodes the story begins to drag a little bit and the show loses some of it’s fun appeal up until the final 4 episodes or so. Toward the finale of the series things pick up quite a bit and the plot begins to thicken as does the action, everything starts to make sense and the show ends with a bit of glory which was really nice to see. All in all I would say I enjoyed what I saw out of Chrome Shelled Regios and like I said before, I definitely recommend it to those looking to keep up with what’s new and for those looking to fill a void in between something they’ve just finished and something they really want to see that may not be released on DVD yet. With all of that out of they way it’s now time for me to discuss some of the production values of Chrome Shelled Regios, something I really enjoy doing since it helps with the overall enjoyment of the series.
First off I’d like to talk about the animation within this series and how good it actually is, seriously, the character designs were well done and everything is nice and fluid with the animation and I’d say it’s on par with some of the better drawn shows out there. I didn’t see any major flaws in the art production except that there was too many classic anime cliches` such as facial changes and sweat drops above the head, that and once in a while I noticed a slight drop in animation quality during group shots, but that’s all par for the course in any animated program.
The music and sound effects used in Chrome Shelled Regios were fine, nothing overly exciting or too catchy but everything that can be heard throughout the series was good and some tunes helped out with the atmosphere of certain situations the characters were in and whatnot. I wouldn’t exactly run out and buy the OST or anything but that’s just a personal opinion more than anything, still, you may find yourself humming the main theme every now and again or maybe quoting some of the saying from the characters, such as “restoration!”.
The storytelling in this series was fine, as was the writing, but I wouldn't put it up there with something like Claymore or Casshern Sins or anything like that, instead I would say that the writers told a pretty fun story that probably won't stand the test of time like some other spectacular anime out there. But instead, the story will certainly entertain those who have chosen to give the series a chance for a simple viewing or two, but again, you may just watch this series and fall absolutely in love with it, it all relies on what kind of anime you enjoy. Personally, I watched this series all the way through a few times now and I'll probably revisit it after 5 years or so just to see how it's held up, I enjoyed it and you'll see just how much in the ratings below, but I do wish that the story didn't drag so much toward the middle-end and I feel it hindered the plot more than anything else. Anyhow, I think if you give Chrome Shelled Regios a shot that you'll be pleasantly surprised and I really hope that those who read this blog entry will try it out for themselves because the characters are fun, the story was interesting, and the overall package is good enough to hang with a lot of the anime that's being released today. CSR is certainly competitive and should provide the viewer with at least one or two moments that they will remember and reference sometime down the road, if not then at least you got to meet Felli, she's quite the intriguing character if I do say so myself. "Restoration!"
Art & Animation - 8.5/10
Music & Sound Effects - 8.0/10
Story & Writing - 7.5/10
Fun - 7.5/10
Overall - 7.5/10
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