Anime Review: Jormungand
Jormugand’s premise is an interesting one. Koko is a young arms seller that secretly deals in arms trade under the guise of working for an international shipping company. Since this line of work isn’t exactly legal, Koko gets involved in her fair share of gunfights, car chases and all sorts of warfare. In order to stay in business, Koko employs a handful of mercenaries to ensure her precious cargo reaches the hands of those paying a premium price for her products.
With such an explosive premise, one would think that the show would move along at a rapid rate. That is not the case in this show. At least not in the handful of episodes I watched. Much of each episode is usually bogged down by exposition and/or character development of characters that fail jump beyond being two-dimensional characters. I am all for slower shows, so long as the show properly uses the downtime from the action to convey something meaningful and bring the viewer closer to the experience. Jormungand just did not do that for me.
After watching the first seven episodes of Jormungand, I really don’t remember anything unique about the show’s cast. Koko is reminiscent Sir Integras Wingates Hellsing from Hellsing. Both are young, pretty, headstrong women in charge of a powerful organizations that get involved in international wars. Both characters are steadfast leaders that refuse to flinch in the face of even the most powerful adversary.
Speaking of similarities between Koko and Integras, both characters are served by powerful killers that are deadly marksmen. Koko’s bodyguard, and a main focus of the show, is a young boy with a deep distaste for the death and destruction of war. The middle-eastern mercenary, Jonathan, had been orphaned due to war and afterwards was later sent to “work” at a military base. Ironically, life leads him to become a child warrior that must use the very weapons he hates in order to achieve his goals. The stoic and resolute character is very remiscent of Setsuna F. Seiei from Gundam 00.
Besides Koko and Jonathan, the cast is filled by other mercenaries and villains that feel equally bland and/or derivative as the main characters.
The soundtrack and voice acting is very forgettable. Enough said.
The art style, like the story and the show’s off-beat sense of humor, borrows from the ever-popular Hellsing series. There is also a mix of Fullmetal Alchemist in the show’s character designs.
The action scenes lack a real sense of tension, since the outcome always favors the good guys. No matter who tries to take on Koko, her mercenaries always triumph. The animation is serviceable, but these scenes often fails to really pull the viewer into the experience. The action in the show also left me with the feeling that I had already experienced a similar sequence in another show or movie.
Jormungand takes a cool premise, borrows art styles and characters that have worked in other shows and puts them all in a blender. But as it turns out, the blend that results from these ingredients just doesn’t go down smooth.
The show very much reminds me of Hellsing without the darker elements that were a signature of the Hellsing series. It tries to compensate by making the viewer relate to the show’s characters, which feel unrelateable and/or uninspired. So for me Jormungand is a pass.
|Posted 21 February, 2015 - 10:52 by SentaiSeiya|