June 17, 2013
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Title: Eureka Seven AO
Genre: Science Fiction
Rating: 5.6/10

Eureka Seven Ao

Summary: Ao, the son of Eureka, lives on Okinawa. He comes into contact with Mark 1, which turns out to be Nirvash, his mother’s mecha, which no one has been able to make it work since his mother used it. Ao ends up joining an organization called Generation Blue with Nirvash and helps fights G-Monsters/Secrets.

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Review: This anime had me at the edge of my seat, slumped in my chair, and falling asleep with my head resting on my desk. It was such a big rollercoaster of excitement and boredom that it was difficult for me to rate it. In the end I feel like I made the right choice after weighing everything together in terms of characters, story, artwork, and soundtrack.

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I have to say that the thing that got me into the anime was the nostalgic feeling I got when seeing the artwork. It reminded me of one of my first long series anime Eureka Seven. I was happy that they didn’t decide to change things up and throw us in a different universe. The beginning started with a lot of great shots of Osaka and its people. Each character had a unique identifier which brought out a breath of fresh air. Things started with a bang as Secrets started spawning left and right laying waste to the land. I watched in fear and awe as giant dust clouds sprouted form the ground creating giant mushrooms all over the world. The air battles were pretty top notch with great animation and choreography. I couldn’t catch any outstanding animation faults and I felt keeping the original style of the series was a good idea. They did of course make a few improvements in the CGI, but that’s a given after how many years it has been since the original.

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More importantly I was invested in the characters at a vary early stage. I actually liked everyone who showed up on the screen and played either major or minor roles. Of course the one I was most impressed with Ao. Without spoiling anything (though I’m not sure it is much of a spoiler) he doesn’t act the way I expected him to after watching Eureka Seven. The characters in it’s prequel weren’t much until the end of the series. Ao was one of those kids that just didn’t care what other people said or what he thought was “the safe bet”. He comes across this unknown mecha as the world seemed to be going to hell. What did he do? He didn’t just turn tail and run, or stand in awe afraid of this sleeping beast. No my friends, he jumped right in, turned it on, and kicked some Secret butt. The series didn’t have a complex story line so it kept things rather light hearted… at first. This was my, and many others’, biggest problem with the anime. They tried to do too much with what they had. I understand that they needed to do something different from the original series to make it interesting; they just went a little too far. Eureka Seven AO ended up being the most convoluted, confused anime in the entire season. I had no idea what the main goal was or what they characters were thinking. It is a rare case but I actually ended up disliking Ao after thinking he was such an amazing character at the beginning. I tried to empathize with him, but he just made it so difficult. If he wasn’t crying about one thing he complaining about another. The support characters didn’t do much for me either because they hardly left a lasting impreand ssion. Really none of them had any impact on the anime it seemed. I didn’t feel like they actually had a strong role in Ao’s daily life. I would dive deeper for my reasoning behind that but it would give way too many spoilers. Then again I don’t think anyone would even understand what I was talking about because I sure as heck can’t explain what happened.

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The soundtrack for Eureka Seven AO was pretty top-notch and gave me a nostalgic feeling. The first opening “Escape” by Hemenway was probably my favorite. It was matched rather well with the high action opening and majestic mecha maneuvers. I have to say though that I expected a superb soundtrack because of songs like Niji and Himitsu Kichi from Eureka Seven. I’m glad that they met my expectations with songs like IFO-RA272 ‘Nirvash’ SPEC-M2 and Slipping Away W/U. If you are into electronic/dance then I would suggest giving the whole soundtrack a listen.

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Final statements: I thought that the series was going to be a lot better than it turned out. It was doing a great job with character development, story, and overall entertainment; however, it wasn’t too long before things starts to take a turn for the worst. I wasn’t sure what to think anymore and got completely lost. I would blame it on my lack of watching Eureka Seven right before release, but it seems to me that it wouldn’t have helped. Due to its poor story and character development I have to say that this is an avoid watch.

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