The first episode of Dimension W drew me in almost immediately with an incredibly smooth animation quality that I don’t see very often. If you have not yet seen Dimension W a great example is the opening, which shows fluid animation in a momentary dance scene. Openings may not always be indicative of true quality, but Dimension W maintained a very continuous animation quality that I have yet to see matched. That being said, I think the other show I have spoken of (Active Raid) is actually very good quality as well, so I don’t say that lightly. The animation quality in Dimension W is such a refreshing reward from the last seasons of anime I’ve had to cover, where the quality could be a little inconsistent.
Dimension W very quickly sets up a specific world: Electricity is the main form of power, and therefore the currency of power, through a system of inventions known as Coils. Coils are highly regulated to the extent that illegal coils are hunted down by everyone from legal agencies to the equivalent of bounty hunters: in this show they’re called Collectors. Very quickly we see an older jaded kind of main character who flat out hates the stuff despite being a Collector himself. He asks for half of his payments to be in gas, which we learn early in the episode is about 30 dollars per litre at this point. It’s a fun thing to wonder what makes him bitter, but the character archetype has definitely seen its day.
While Kyouma is definitely not a new character he is refreshing given his age. I find in anime when someone is older and bitter it provides a lot more lee way to see them from a different perspective than a younger character. Younger characters typically go through one traumatic event that is sometimes not even relatable: and generally don’t become understanding of anyone around them. Despite Kyouma’s hard ass insistence that he doesn’t have to save anyone and pulling a very typical ‘I’m not here to save the girl’ shtick, he reveals himself in a scene by preventing the main female character, Mira, from being touched by a villain. I appreciate that despite the trope he still showed a moment of decency before succumbing to a very predictable dynamic.
Mira however, is another can of worms. From the beginning the two main characters kind of mirror one another and begin to converge on a location, however Mira is much more demure and very similar to a high school girl. She even comes built in with fanservice! It was shocking to me when she showed up as fanservicey as she did, but not at the same time. I think she is one of the only sources of it in this show, so she has a lot to make up for it. (I forsee she won’t have any issue getting to that point at all.)
The main appeal of Dimension W to me is that Kyouma is not a complete idiot. He, and the show, feel a lot like pieces of a much older anime, Darker than Black. I got the feeling right away when the plot was being introduced that the show had very big allusions to that show. While coils are not completely otherworldly, it is basically shown they possess an incredible power that many people want to get their hands on or imitate. We may see more of the premise of otherworldly when we learn more of Mira, who refers to the Doctor responsible for coils as ‘father’. Mira’s Father is given a very quick backstory the first, and last, time we see him. The company that oversees coils comes to reconcile with him. For what? They just killed his whole family, no big deal. But the company assures him the people behind it were ‘punished’ and the board of directors is ‘sorry’. Understandably the doctor tells them to go fuck themselves by using a special coil to create a black hole and destroy an entire section of town, as well as himself. Oopsie! Mira’s motivations aren’t quite clear but she certainly is aligned only with her father. Er. You know. His memory.
I immediately loved this show. On its own merits the show is very good at capturing your interest in the plot while also wrapping you up with the characters. While I’m not in love with any of the characters yet there is no one I dislike and already many people I am fond of. Here’s to the hope that Kyouma and Mira can engage us with their banter and growth, while keeping the mystery and intrigue of the coils alive for the length of the season. As for me, this is definitely a must watch!
One thing though: Nice faux catgirl show. We all know what you did and you’re not fooling any of us.
Likelihood of Blogging: Blogging so hard I can’t even.