Slowly, slowly, I am working my way down the piles of items to review. This item sort of fell to the bottom of that pile with all the new incoming. My apologies to today’s sponsor, Daniel, for the delay.
Burst Angel Volume 4 is pretty much where the series lost my attention the first time around. I was having difficulty holding my attention on it this viewing, as well. Time after time, I had to stop starting a second thing while the DVD was playing. The story just sort of loses focus. Perhaps because BA is really a 13-episode series wearing a 24-episode season? I dunno. I’ll leave that to the philosophers.
The volume starts off pretty strong, with the end of the Osaka arc, complete with tragedy, loyalty, heroism and pride in Osaka that just bursts out of the screen. Thinking about it, if the Osaka arc has been lengthened by another episode, and the entire series was just that arc, I think I would have liked it better. Well, okay, the Bible Black rip-off arc was pretty good too. But the rest of the episodes…meh.
Immediately after the big bang full of sound and fury signifying nothing, we move into a series of filler episodes. The first of these is the backstory when Jo met Meg. It’s a little lighter-handed than the expanded OAV version of the story, so Meg remains a lovable incompetent with bad fashion sense and large breasts that jiggle. Jo saves her.
This is followed by a simply hysterical episode where everyone wears terrifying bathing suits and there is a big monster with tentacles. Meg gets nabbed. Jo saves her.
In the final episode we are treated to heavy-handed Jo-ness. Jo’s past – hinted at in her and Meg’s backstory – is catching up with her. She ends up joining forces with a samurai-esque guy to fight an out-of-control robot. And to be really, really honest, I can’t remember a single thing about this episode.
So, while the anime is in one sense heading towards a climax, the tension that draws *me* into a series has been lost. Too much filler between one arc and the other, maybe? Too much something, or not enough.
Yuri from here on in can be summed up as “Jo seems to be fond of Meg.” (You remember that line? It was from the official Vandread description of Jura. “Jura seems to be fond of Barnette.”) We’ve established just about all the relationship we’re going to get between Meg and Jo, and the series has shifted focus away from them as partners to Jo alone. And while there will be thrills and spills and shoot-outs and giant robots from here on in, somehow…it’s less compelling than the action that was wrapped around utter stupidity. Not *every* action series needs to have a plot. Sometimes we’re okay just watching Jo kick ass. We might even be willing to be kidnapped to have her save us. ;-)
Art – 5
Characters – 6
Story – 5
Yuri – 1
Service – 7 (someone came up with those bathing suits…)
Overall – 5
Last volume I said I was surprised how much I remembered. This volume I’m not surprised to see how much I forgot.