Vivy or Diva?
One of the interesting things that comes out of episodical anime reviews is that each episode ends up getting evaluated on its own strengths and weaknesses rather than when you review a whole season and you are looking at the overall flow of a narrative and the quality carried across an entire season. As a result we have an episode such as episode 7 of Vivy: Fluorite Eye’s Song that is still a decent episode but isn’t as compelling as the six previous episodes delivered by this series and the end result is I felt a little disappointed when it ended even though that is ridiculous and this anime remains a very solid watch.
Part of the problem comes from the fact that Diva/Vivy has had some kind of memory glitch and is firmly in Diva mode. She’s forgotten her previous missions with Matsumoto, outside of a few minor glimpses and her focus is firmly on her performance on the main stage. We’ve jumped again in time and she is now 60 years old but we’re only the briefest of glimpses into how her previous actions have affected the time-line.
The basic formula has been the first episode of a pair gives us the new context, establishes a mission and Vivy sets off before we end on some kind of surprise or obstacle and then the second episode resolves it. Here we lack the context other than Diva is really successful and there’s a concert happening and the reveal at the end of the episode seemed to come out of nowhere (unless of course you know what happens to Shakespeare’s characters in which case the name makes sense but it still seems like an out of context problem for Matsumoto to be involved with).
Whether this ultimately proves to be a weak link in an otherwise strong narrative will really be determined by the next episode and whether or not it brings all the threads together. I have confidence in this anime so far because it has given us six pretty solid episodes leading up to this one, but on its own, without the second part, honestly this one feels a little lacking.
However, while the narrative feels a little lacking in grounding and like it got a little lost or is meandering a bit, Diva/Vivy’s character was on full display this week. Since her first encounter with Matsumoto this AI has been going through small and subtle changes and these have definitely accumulated to the Diva we meet at the start of this episode some 60 years on from that first meeting.
While she is still definitely an AI and hasn’t just become an idol, her personality has very much expanded to feel more nuanced and fitting with her role as a performer. It is a really wonderful character evolution to watch and it will be interesting to see where the story takes this.
As usual, this episode looked really good. The opening song was fantastic to listen to and the visuals were spot on as always. The weakest point comes during the darker scenes where Vivy activates her combat program to avoid some falling debris, but even then the movement is pretty fluid. As much as I have said this episode is a weaker entry that is only comparably to the rest of this series. Vivy remains one of my favourite shows that I am watching this season and if it wasn’t for my fascination with Mars Red it would be my top pick for the season.
Images used for review from: Vivy: Fluorite Eye’s Song. Dir. S Ezaki. Wit Studio. 2021.
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