R.O.D. Official Archive Artbook (English)

June 21st, 2013

When Udon announced the R.O.D. Official Archive, I thought “Cool!” Then I thought, “Wait, you mean the cover art and the pencil board art? Ewwwww….”

Well, I went ahead and bought it anyway, (even though Udon offered to send me a PDF review copy, thanks folks) and I’m glad I did.

The images run the gamut – promotional art and cover images from Read or Die, the original OVA, the manga, the novels and even more from Read or Dream, the manga and the anime. A lot of the images would have been Newtype and other magazine stills, poster art, postcard art and, yeah, those super-skanky pencil boards from the anime. ^_^;

Taken as a whole, there is more good art than bad.  The middle of the book contains detailed character profiles and histories, setting and random other designs, like Maggie’s creatures.

But wait! There’s more! What makes this book a very cool thing to have is episode-by-episode synopses and insight to motivations and plot complications, by the staff. For that alone, the book is worth a look. I found myself totally lost in the episode section poring over the bit in ROD The TV where we plumb Yomiko’s memories. I wanted to know if my interpretation of what happened had any relationship to what actually happened. ^_^

Not a must-have, but if you’re a big-‘F’ Fan of the series, you’ll probably want to have this.

Ratings:

Overall – 8

A fun collection of ephemera from a series that was way better than it had any right to be. ^_^

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3 Responses

  1. Barbara says:

    Are these insights to the character motivations and plot you mentioned not seen directly in the television show?

    • That’s a surprisingly difficult question to answer, Barbara. ROD The TV posits a number of possible timelines and does not establish any as the one true (TM) timeline. Especially towards the end, one can easily question about which – if any – of the stories of what “happened” is really what happened at all. So while in some cases some viewers might have picked up on some of what is said in the book, many (especially if they are focusing on something other at the moment) could miss them. Even within the TV series, we’re not given one fixed history and the TV series implicitly acknowledges that there are other alternative timelines (i.e., the manga, the novels…) so good luck getting a “yes/no” answer to that question. ^_^

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