What About the Show Makes the Least Sense this Season? It’s K.
GMX is this weekend and I’m busy coming up with interview questions for our illustrious guests. You’ll be getting all that coverage over the weekend and next week, but for now there’s something I need to append. When I wrote the article about what show’s I’d been watching for Fall Season ’12, I had a niggling feeling that I’d forgotten something. There was a show I had watched some of that completely slipped my mind while going over every detail of the shows I was writing up, and doesn’t that just sound like a good foot to start off on?
K or Backwards K, Regular K is the story of… I’m not sure. Seriously, I only have a vague grasp of what’s going on. The first episode starts off with part of a fight, then follows a boring kid through his boring day, watch out for the naked lady oh she’s gone, then someone tries to kill him because he’s SECRET EVIL OH NO, then the episode ends. There’s two people trying to kill him, one group that has only one important character who rides a skateboard while holding a baseball bat while shooting red particle effects and one guy who has a katana and powers. The second episode pretends that the first episode makes sense and immediately doesn’t explain the SECRET EVIL OH NO because katana man and baseball guy have to fight for four seconds, then the main character’s cat turns into a naked lady with ultra tits for no reason and helps him run away from katana man who found his house. They run around for a literal day time lapse, then eat breakfast together and the episode ends. Actually, “stops” is a better word than “ends” because… what?
It’s not until the third episode that we get some semblance of explanation, but that doesn’t make any sense either. The two main characters who would have been having the fight in the first episode, one with red particle effects and one with blue, but then they don’t and red guy is arrested. Blue guy, who leads a team of army people whose uniform and character designers have never even heard of Hiromu Arakawa, then exposits to red particle guy about a bunch of terms you’ve never heard before.
What unique uniforms that I’ve never seen before ever.
Blue particle guy rattles off the terms, in order, “Weismann level,” “Sword of Damocles,” Kagutsu crater,” and “Dresden states.” Now, most of those are probably words that you can maybe guess at the meaning of. You see swords in the first episode hovering in the sky, so maybe that’s the Sword of Damocles. Red particle guy’s “Weismann level limit” is supposed to bring down the Sword of Damocles, but later on some other character says his high power is a lie or something but it’s a half truth. And there’s a psychic gothic lolita who works for the group that baseball bat guy is part of, but he’s actually part of a different group while working for this group HOMRA, probably because HOMRA doesn’t seem to do anything even though they can apparently offer a ten million yen reward for info on some guy even though people who see the ad for that think it’s just another one of their pranks and…
Shut down. I can’t handle it anymore. I’m not deliberately trying to confuse you. This is just how the show progresses. Plot points are thrown at you randomly over the course of the episodes before they just stop on what I think are supposed to be cliffhangers or “the adventure continues” moments. There’s a point where katana guy explains that the particle effect colors come from color kings, one for each of the colors of the rainbow, and a colorless king who is the main character even though he doesn’t know that. Then he describes the red clan as violent, we see a scene with bat guy, then two pretty people are dancing in a sky fortress, then back to the main character and katana guy. That was me trying to explain the progression of the show at a better pace than the show itself, but did that make any more sense? If you can understand the plot of this show, you deserve a prize because I have no idea what the fuck is going on at any point.
This makes just as much sense in context
This maybe wouldn’t be a breaking point as this show was very clearly produced to be very visually engaging. It’s just that it falls flat in that aspect as well. There’s good flow of motion especially in fight scenes, one of which includes a face getting grabbed which you know I love, but that’s really it. You may be able to tell from those pictures that there’s this obnoxious screened green-to-blue gradient overlay on the whole show that sometimes looks ok and other times looks like shit. Things are also usually too bright and shiny. This might be the first anime you need to watch with sunglasses on. Colors look over-saturated especially when people are using their color powers. It’s a visual mess.
That’s to speak nothing of the character designs. This show doesn’t know who it’s being marketed towards. On one hand, it’s bishonen central. All the guys are pretty with their sparkly power interacting with the sparkly, over-saturated backgrounds making a sparkly bishonen festival for half the episode. It’s apparently supposed to be some cross media project aimed at fans of that sort of thing, there’s even a prequel manga that might make the show itself make more sense, but that stops making sense when you see the primary female characters. There’s that naked, transformed from a cat lady whose always naked or wearing a jacket just to hold her tits for maximum cleavage. She’s gets fanservice shots in the opening and ending and during the show, but it’s not just her. The other big time female character in blue particle guy’s army thing wears a miniskirt that is so mini you can see the crease of her ass cheeks poking out from under the bottom on top of her ridiculous and poorly drawn boobs. Seriously, I know that anime tits are similar to real breasts in the same way a beach ball is similar to an orange, but look at this picture and tell me if you can see what’s wrong with it:
You see it, right? How her left boob is bigger and further forward despite that it’s further away from us meaning that it’s something like 1.5 time as big as her right one due to perspective? Not only is the female fanservice obnoxious and completely out of place, it’s not even drawn well.
So Mirror K, Normal K is a complete mess. Nonsensical story with confusing progression, ugly, overstylized visuals, and crappy, unoriginal character designs that can’t decide who they want to pander torwards make a show that’s only value is trying to figure out what the fuck is going on. In a lot of ways, I see K as the opposite of JoJo’s: The Animation. Where davidproduction had to work around a thin budget by using high stylization and excellent direction to make JoJo’s, the design philosophy of K was, “Look at all the money we have! Let’s just throw it around randomly!” I wouldn’t bother.