Mekakucity Actors Episode 1 [First Impression]

Alright, so I hear this is based off something Vocaloid related. I like Vocaloid. So here we go.

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The first minute of animation had me sold, this show looks amazing. The animation is fantastic, oh well it’s Shaft. This shouldn’t shock me, their animation style has always impressed me. I had actually just finished re-watching Madoka when I watched this. I suppose I should of seen the similarities. Also the character designs, in particular the main character remind me a lot of the art from Bakemonogatari.

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Now to say I understood everything that went on in this episode would be a complete lie. I don’t feel like you’re really supposed to understand it though, this episode one is clearly going to be explained throughout the progression of the series.

Well let me set you up with what I can understand off just the first episode. Our ‘Hero’ or main character is a NEET named Shintaro Kisaragi. He hasn’t been outside in almost two years. A while back, he acquired an interesting room mate in the form of a computer program. The best way I can think of to describe what she is, is a Net-Navi from Mega man. She lives in his computer and talks to him, she can be transported around on portable devices.

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She’s totally cute.

So in an argument with her over sunblock he gets a little too active and knocks a bottle of soda onto key keyboard. completely ruining the thing. So he has to buy a new one, unfortunately it’s a holiday and nobody can deliver for another three to five days.

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He can’t wait that long! This computer is his life! There is one way he can get a new keyboard today and that’s by going….. OUTSIDE! NO, THE HORRORS! I guess that would be awkward after being inside your house for almost two years. Also most NEETs I’ve seen depicted in anime have mild to severe social anxieties. I’m not sure if this is the real case for people like that in the real world but for this character it seems pretty spot on.
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Well apparently this keyboard is important enough to force him outside to a shopping center. A shopping center with a theme park on the roof! Is, is that a real thing? Do those exist in Japan? If so I need to pack up and move right the hell now! So the computer program room mate wants to go to the theme park and on the ferris wheel so she bribes our ‘hero’ by threatening to tell everyone about his porn if he doesn’t take her. He gives in and says sure, just for a bit.

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However, before their shopping can even begin! The place is held up by a bunch of terrorist! Bad luck, first time outside in two years and this kid ends up a terrorist hostage. This is when the episode gets really weird, I’m not sure what’s real and what’s not past this part.

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The coloring gets really interesting and I don’t know who this character is…or anything about them but they are deranged and I want their children! He’s having FUN with this hostage situation!
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YES! I spammed screen shots of him despite not even knowing his name. I don’t have a problem!

All Shintaro needs are his hands untied and the terrorist distracted and their chances of getting out of there are 100%.

So he gets exactly what he wishes for and plugs his Net-Navi into the computer systems. I need to find a better term for her…I’ll work on it in episode two if they don’t give us something to call her.

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That’s pretty much the base of the episode but there is so much more going on besides that, what’s with the brown haired girl? How do all these characters link together? What’s with the timer? Why can’t Shintaro remember how he met this brown haired girl? Why are they on a giant clock? I can’t even begin to guess so I’ll have to wait.

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Overall: This episode was amazing! It gives you so many leads into the strange things that are going on. I’m never really sure what’s real and what could be going on in just the main characters head. Are these peoples eyes really red? What kind of power do you have to just make a distraction like that? So many questions that I can’t wait to have answered. The music is beautiful, the art is beautiful. The questions are amazing and the characters are very interesting from the little I’ve seen.

blogging: IF NOBODY ELSE WANTS IT I’LL BE ON IT LIKE A BEE ON HONEY! I’ve found my love of this season!

~Midnight

8 thoughts on “Mekakucity Actors Episode 1 [First Impression]

  1. I’m laughing so hard. Okay I was expecting you to cut it up in a really bad way, since a LOT of people didn’t like the first episode. But this review is actually pretty decent and had me laughing. I’ve been a KagePro fan ever since it started so this anime is a pretty big deal to me (and the rest of the fandom). Glad somebody outside of the fandom also feels our excitement!

    P.S.
    Nothing major spoiler-y or anything but the guy with the long side bangs is named Kano Shuuya. And we call Ene “Cyber Girl”.

  2. Thanks for the review! I loved this first episode! The characters were great and really entertaining, the story is filled with so much mystery yet by the end of the season will probably realize that all of the answers were right in front of us.

  3. Hi there! I’m glad to finally have found a non-KagePro fan who actually liked the anime adaptation. I have my bias so I totally dig the whole thing but others seemed to be put off at how greatly it resembles monogatari (well,duh, it’s shaft. lol). But anyway, I implore you to listen to the vocaloid songs. If you don’t want to be spoiled I guess you can watch them after each episode, the title of the ep, is the title of the song, btw.

    And, oh! You’re crushing on Kano. Haha. Good pick. He’s my fave too. Did you notice how his thumbs weren’t really tied back there? :))

    1. I did notice that, I’m very curious as to how he got his hands free. Yeah Kano is great! I’ll go listen to the songs perhaps after a few episodes have aired! I’d never heard of any of this before but I’m totally into it. I can’t wait for next Saturday.

  4. I don’t know why people praise Shaft’s animation works. In my experience watching 3 Shaft shows, Bakemonogatari, Nisekoi, and Mekaku City Actors, this has to be one of the worst companies in terms of animation for me. What I hate about Shaft is their lack of visual detail, especially in backgrounds. They just look too bland. I feel like they don’t give too much effort into their shows. It almost feels like they had budget issues or something.

    The only thing I can praise them with is their character design, which I’ve always liked. The only show where Shaft did a good job in animation is Nisekoi, that’s it. One reason I’m criticizing them so much because I’m comparing their animation to Nagi no Asukara’s animation, which finished a few weeks ago. That show excelled in almost every way for animation and detail and Shaft’s anime doesn’t even come close to that. Just to let you know, Nagi no Asukara’s animation is created by P.A Works which also animated Another and Angel Beats, both with great animations. So, whenever I find that a show is created by Shaft, I’m going to have low expectations in their animation.

    1. SHAFT has always been more of the more artistic animation studio. It really all boils down to preference and what you define as “quality”, some people love it, some people like yourself don’t.

      P.A Works on the other hand has always been one of the studios (other than MADHOUSE from time to time) who would focus on the delivering stunning backgrounds and in depth details (Hanasaku Iroha is another great example) and they continue to get better at it over the years.

    2. This series does have budget issues,hence it looks like crap. There’s quite a bit of off-model animation, use of stock backgrounds to cut down on character animation etc. I do think SHAFT’s style is good if used sparingly, but at this point it’s just overkill. Also they reuse shots from older series, just tweaking the colours, which is plain cheap. It used to look fresh but it’s been used in so many of their shows;
      The polkadots from Hidamari Sketch, the reused city skylines from Arakawa, the headtilts from Monogatari…it’s an amalgamation of all things SHAFT done horribly.

  5. I still love this show- Since it has budget issues *cough* shaft used all their budget on Nisekoi *cough* Its not so good. To be honest this has the potential to be far better then Nisekoi. But to be honest this sort of style suits the show. I just hope they dont mess things up…

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