elDLIVE Series Review

Overview:

Chuta is a normal student except that he has a voice that he hears and talks to making people look at him a bit strangely. Turns out, the voice belongs to an alien Monatelian and now Chuta’s been recruited in elDLIVE to assist the space police as they crack down on aliens committing crimes on Earth.

I reviewed this week to week so if you want to know my thoughts on individual episodes click here.

Review:

If you followed my weekly reviews you already know my main opinion on this anime; it’s full of wasted potential. We have an incredibly interesting premise with a human who is technically possessed by an alien being recruited by the alien space police. So many adventures and things that could happen. It all seems so incredibly fascinating.

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The reality is what we’re in for is a fairly mediocre high school comedy with occasional aliens thrown in for added weirdness. The characters get some minor development and grow a bit but ultimately Chuta is still a bit of a wimp who makes fairly bold statements at key moments but then goes back to being ridiculously insecure and his partner, Misuzu, is still pretty much stuck up. The minor inroads they made toward being a team were pretty inconsequential and none of the other characters get significant enough screen time to actual do anything that might be called development.

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Which is kind of a shame because many of the support cast seem far more interesting than either Chuta of Misuzu. My favourite character was probably Dr Love and he didn’t come in until fairly late in the series. I also liked the Captain, though he mostly got to sit and occasionally got to say the last word in the episode, and I enjoyed Vega, though that was a short acquaintance. So while these characters all had potential, very little of it came about in the show and I just wonder how much more interesting the story would have been if we’d dumped Chuta in an airlock and had this cast as the primary focus.

It isn’t that there is anything broken inside this show. There are some weird visual effects with scene transitions that are a bit jarring in the first few episodes but eventually you just get over those. There’s also some weird colour schemes, but again, not so much a problem. Conflicts are resolved way too easily and very little feels like a real threat. But none of these are nail-in-the-coffin problems as the show continues to be relatively functional.

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Then we have our villains who are as cliché and hopeless as they come. They fail to provide any real sense of drama, their motivations are usually basic or not explored, and their goals seem relatively trivial or pointless in the grander scheme.

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Basically, this show works but it isn’t really worth your time. There are plenty of shows about normal humans who acquire some sort of power and then get recruited to do whatever that are much more entertaining. While this show has glimmers of interesting ideas and occasionally does something that strikes you as reasonably clever, mostly it fails to really land its mark not being funny enough to just be viewed as a comedy or serious enough to view as a drama. Both elements are watered down by the existence of the other and the end result is something that is overall pretty bland.


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elDLIVE Episode 12

Review:

Amazingly enough we didn’t get any kind of twist. The spy was Vega. We do get an angsty reason why and in the end we save him but seriously for a season finale having the recently introduced character turn out to be a traitor and call that a wrap on the season is just kind of lazy.

Of course that’s a criticism I could extend across a lot of this. The suddenly being able to recruit aliens all around the world to take out DeMille’s ships is just a cheap throw away plot device because otherwise the heroes can’t get out of the fix they are in. But there’s no speech or negotiation scene. It’s just, hey, here’s an idea, and it’s all done. If it was that easy, why were the ships even a threat?

Additionally, the final fight between the space police and DeMille Junior is just so easy and over and done with too quickly. Playing the theme song and hitting us hard with guitar riffs doesn’t make it any more exciting. The only fight that had any punch to it was between Vega and Chuta and the outcome of that was so incredibly clear that it just didn’t feel worth it.

So I’ll write my full review of this show and sadly put it among the titles of shows that maybe could have been so much better than they ever were.

elDLIVE is available on Crunchyroll.


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elDLIVE Episode 11

Review:

There’s actually a half decent set-up in this episode with the villains demanding Chuta get handed over and the spy in elDLIVE (though it seems like it is obvious who that is unless they are just playing us). However, as always, elDLIVE decides to strangle itself by spending the first third of the episode on a random art museum excursion where the boys get all excited over pictures of naked girls and the girls get all offended. The other issue this episode is Chuta is back to being miserable. While I get he isn’t going to instantly be full of confidence, his bouts of self-doubt are really dragging this particular story down because they aren’t dealt with very well and he isn’t a sophisticated enough character for me to care about his insecurities. It just makes me want to slap him and tell him to get over himself. Plus, Dolough fading out just before revealing the name of the traitor is pretty lame though was completely expected at this point. Well, I guess we’ll find out how this crisis is resolved next week.

elDLIVE is available on Crunchyroll.


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elDLIVE Episode 10

Review:

For a show that supposedly has only 12 episodes they really aren’t making any effort to bring this season to any kind of climax. We get another kind of throw-away investigation of the week episode with some bare minimum character development propped against it in episode 10. And also a random introduction to yet another new character in the final minutes (there’s two episodes left). While I’m glad Misuzu isn’t going to be nose plugged any more and that Chuta can finally get over his rampant insecurity about his smell and start being illogically insecure about pretty much anything else, there really wasn’t any other point to anything this episode. The side characters more or less read a few lines and vanished and the actual ‘case’ was pretty pathetic.

elDLIVE is available on Crunchyroll.


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elDLIVE Episode 9

Review:

I really wish that this show hadn’t tried to shove all the new characters into Chuta’s class at school. It just seems incredibly pointless and the ongoing human ignorance of alien presence (“what is that cosplay?”) is just getting ridiculous. Even the citizens of Sunnydale eventually woke up that they were living on a hellmouth (sorry for the Buffy reference).

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Anyway, this episode seems mostly pointless but I’m kind of hoping they tell us sooner rather than later what is actually going on with Misuzu in terms of her not being able to stand Chuta’s smell. They’ve belaboured this point for far too long now for it to be nothing. Also, Dr Love is every bit as fun a character as I thought he would be. Too bad the other two girls have added pretty much zip.

elDLIVE is available on Crunchyroll.


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elDLIVE Episode 8

Review:

There were moments this episode where I was having a great time. Then there were other moments when I was wondering why I’m still watching this show. Early in the episode I had one of those flash-back moments to Scooby Doo but then we moved to some slightly more high stakes drama and it was quite entertaining.

One thing that kind of annoys me are Chuta’s observations. He just isn’t observant enough or smart enough for these to add much of anything to the show and are either him stating the obvious or stating something that’s entirely wrong or naive. It’s kind of bugging me.

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That said, there’s some good action this week and Chuta finally uses more than just one attack so some progress on that front. Fairly certain this story is going to end just when it starts getting interesting.

elDLIVE is available on Crunchyroll.


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elDLIVE Episode 7

Review:

Well, we are no closer to figuring out what Misuzu’s fate is going to be, but this episode does offer some interesting moments. I get the feeling Dr Love is going to be a highly entertaining addition. He isn’t afflicted with ongoing stupidity like so many of the cast have been, and he really manages to nail those one-liners.

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The final parts of the episode, while significant from a story point of view I guess, aren’t really that fun to watch. Maybe if I were younger, the whole hope and believe in yourself message here might have struck a chord but mostly I was just worried I’d roll my eyes clear out of my skull. Still, there were definitely some good moments in this episode.

elDLIVE is available on Crunchyroll.


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elDLIVE Episode 6

Review: 

Misuzu is being interrogated for releasing a prisoner and they have film of her doing it but it turns out that she probably doesn’t remember doing it because she was some sort of test subject and is being medicated. Not sure how  that makes it not her fault (or the fault of those supervising the administration of the medication) but apparently if we rescue some doctor on earth we can clear it all up. Cue a partnership between two girls with contrasting personalities and Chuta. On the plus side the Captain finally got to show off some moves.

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This episode was interesting to watch but several moments in it kind of fail any kind of logic test when you reflect on the episode. Besides, they had a classic let’s have the villain just randomly do something truly horrible (like blow up a room-full of people) in his opening scene just to prove he was some kind of threat rather than making him seem threatening. As always with this show, there are parts I’m really interested in and other parts that just make me wonder when they are going to get it together.

elDLIVe is available on Crunchyroll.


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elDLIVE Episode 5

Review:

Must be the week for shows suddenly kicking things into gear and actually getting them right. elDLIVe really delivered an episode full of action, emotion, and just good fun.

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It wasn’t that anything in the episode was all that far removed from what we’ve seen so far. Chuta is still full of guilt about the incident on the cliff though we finally learn what happened. Misuzu is still her usual self. Everything more or less stayed the same and yet it somehow finally all clicked together.

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Anyway, I’m really hoping this story continues on this way because the last two episodes have just genuinely been fun to watch.

elDLIVe is available on Crunchyroll.


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elDLIVE Episode 4

Review:

This episode does indeed seem to kick things into gear finally. Admittedly, it starts slowly with Chuta reminiscing about the past, though in this case it is kind of important to show he has changed since joining elDLIVE and it becomes important later in the episode. We are subjected to one moment of fairly pointless comedy in the middle and then we go into the final part of the episode where it seems like things might actually get dangerous. This final part of the episode is actually really interesting because you know everything is about to go wrong and yet they pace it quite well to keep you in suspense without dragging. And then, unlike every other episode so far, they don’t rush a conclusion but rather let it end on a cliff hanger. All and all this episode is definitely a step up.

A note on Chuta’s power. We were told that he can imagine what he wants to happen and we’ve seen that in the previous episode where he used ice instead of sewing. The problem seems to be that Chuta apparently lacks imagination because he defaults to sewing almost every time we’ve seen him use his power.

elDLIVE is available on Crunchyroll.


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