I’m not ready to fully review this yet. I watched it awhile ago and remember not being terribly impressed (especially with the title character, Akame). That said, I decided to give the series another go because I didn’t really remember much detail other than not liking the main characters.
At the time of writing, I’ve watched the first five episodes again, though if I’m honest I was ready to give it away at episode 1. I’m kind of glad I pushed through that because I am enjoying the show more than I remember the first time. That said, I’m still not really liking the show.
What I like:
- Some of the fight sequences are quite interesting.
- The weapons, while crazily improbable, made for some really interesting attacks.
- Sheele. I seriously don’t remember paying her any attention at all last time but I quite liked seeing her back story and I love how she transitions from air-head to ruthless killer in a split second. I also vaguely recall that I shouldn’t get too attached to her because I don’t think she hangs around much longer so this could be a problem.
- The way Tatsumi’s grief is dealt with over the first few episodes at the loss of his friends from his home village.
What I don’t like:
- Most of the characters. None of them click for me. Tatsumi is only barely tolerable and when he starts off on yet another idealistic spiel before being mocked by the other members of Night Raid it just makes me bang my head against the back of the couch. I get that he is supposed to be idealistic and young and not as jaded as the seasoned assassins, but does he have to come off that stupidly naive that often? Akame is dull. She may fight well but as a character she just kind of fills the screen occasionally. And she cooks. And eats. A lot. The other members of Night Raid each have various quirks but none of them really feel like wholly developed individuals. They feel like placeholders for various events and necessary comments in the dialogue.
- The extremes. Everyone in the government is either corrupt or too scared of those who are corrupt to do anything. The assassins are fighting for the revolutionary army which is clearly in the right and going to make things better. Okay, it is a petty complaint given it’s the set up of so many other stories but just every now and then it would be nice to see the rebels do something that makes them seem like they are worth backing over the the current government. Just being told they are going to help make things better (and being told that repeatedly) does not make it so.
- The general tone at times – and this one is entirely on me and the way I perceive it. This show doesn’t feel dark enough to really deliver some of the scenes with the impact it really needs to. Tatsumi’s friends die in a truly horrible manner, but because of the way Tatsumi has been set up, the way the battle outside was handled, and what follows after, the true grief and pain that scene should bring kind of get’s buried. Admittedly, they do let Tatsumi grieve properly over time, but the show delivers hard hitting content but seems afraid to just let it be dark. It doesn’t help that I’m not a fan of the way the show tries to deliver the lighter moments and I find these really intrusive to the mood.
- Esdeth’s introduction. Great, she’s a sadistic general and super powerful. So why exactly do we need to introduce her with a naked man licking her boot? Is there no other way to show a powerful, evil woman?
So, I’m going to finish my rewatch of this series over the next little bit and then I’ll write my final review.