The last couple of years have spawned some anime series that ditched the usual 20-minute episode format in favor of longer episodes. ‘Break Blade’, ‘Kara no Kyokai’ and ‘Katanagatari’ all released new installments that were (at least) double the length of a typical anime episode up to and including feature length films. Upsides to this approach are that the production values tend to be much higher and that the longer format allows for more deliberate pacing. The downside is that viewers who follow these series end up waiting a long time between the release of new installments.
‘Towa no Quon’ (TnQ) is a superhero story
as well as Studio Bones’ attempt to hop on the bandwagon. How is it?
Not bad, actually.
It opens with tense sequence involving a shady organization chasing a young boy. Their attempt at capture is swiftly interrupted by a strange figure who proceeds to engage them in a blistering and beautifully animated action sequence. Eventually said figure manages to escape with the boy, and it’s from then that the story well and truly starts up.
The rest of the movie is basically what you’d expect from a first installment. It mostly concerns itself with establishing the major players, the setting and the main conflict. It’s all handled well. Characters all fall under familiar archetypes but not annoyingly so and the larger conflict has the potential for cool developments. Kudos for introducing it all without too much spoon feeding of exposition. Which is something Bones has often tried to do though it’s lead to incoherent messes like ‘Darker than Black’ and ‘Xamd’. The narrative in this, however, is simple and straightforward so there’s no fear of getting lost, not yet at least.
By far the best thing about TnQ’s first episode is the excellent balance between all its elements. It manages to introduce all the important things while keeping the story going. This is further enhanced by the fact that titular character Quon is already introduced as a skilled fighter from the very beginning. Thus avoiding typical clichés revolving around a hero who must come to grips with his powers et cetera (this gets turned into a subplot). On the flipside, it avoids making Quon so powerful that he can effortlessly defeat any opponent. He gets considerable injuries in most fights he’s in and he actually needs the help of his colorful ensemble of sidekicks. This makes it all the easier to warm up to the characters even though they’re yet to be fleshed out.
The animation is great. Environments are well drawn and most of the characters have distinctive designs rather than recycled models with slight alterations. But most of the effort went into creating the wonderful action sequences which, this being a superhero story and all, are sure to be the main draw of this series. They’re not just well-animated, however. They also manage to feel compelling because of the way they’re written. It shuns dry 1-on-1 fights in favor of dynamic confrontations between groups of powerful characters with all sorts of abilities which they use in cool ways in order to get the upper hand. The director deserves props for showing these fights in such a way that they feel dynamic and hectic without making them chaotic. Once again, the balance is excellent. It’s no exaggeration to say that the action sequences are some of the best since ‘Sword of the Stranger’.
The music doesn’t particularly stand out even though it was composed by acclaimed composer Kenji Kawai. It’s competent but little more.
Judging from the first episode Towa no Quon has the potential to make for a great action series. The brisk pace, well built up tension and outstanding action certainly make it very promising. One can rightfully criticize the series for its liberal use of clichés and lack of depth but those hungry for something action-packed should seriously consider giving this a try. The jury is still out on whether or not the rest of the series will be good but this first movie is still well worth checking out.
People with suddenly awakening superhuman powers? Check. A shadowy organization, run by a circular table of cryptic old men, that hunts these newly awakened superhumans? Check. A small alliance of superhumans hiding in plain sight, fighting against persecution by rescuing the awakened ones before they're caught, lead by an experienced veteran (named Quon) with a colorful past? Check, check, check. To be blunt, there's hardly an ounce of originality in the entire series of Towa no Quon films. It whips out numerous ideas from past tales of heroes and villains, and doesn't even have the decency to arrange them in a unique manner. It's worth
noting that an abundance of cliches should never be thought of as an automatic death sentence—sometimes a strong delivery is enough to breathe life into unoriginal concepts and make them into something remarkable, or at least into something entertaining to watch.
Not so in this case. The pacing is ill-conceived, with three entire films dedicated to episodic situations which ultimately serve no purpose but to establish the setting and the characters in an extremely roundabout way. Much of what happens is of shockingly little consequence, and there's a real lack of suspense and momentum, and, for that matter, a real lack of anything that would make the viewer want to watch the next movie. The idea of the superhumans themselves is poorly thought out and ends up being explained away in a manner that both raises more questions than it answers and calls the structural integrity of the story and its setting into question. The films sometimes can't even cover the easiest of bases, the things that should be the simplest in the world to explain—just what exactly are Quon's superpowers, anyway? He's immortal, and at various points in time he appears to be capable of jumping thirty feet in the air, manipulating metal and water just by touching them, and projecting a blade and shield made out of solid light. Not much rhyme or reason to infer from that, and none is ever explicitly offered up. Lazy writing, plain and simple. Oh, and if you're wondering exactly who the people running the secret hunting organization are or what motivates them, you're in good company, because that little tidbit is never explained. Towa no Quon's story does have a few tricks up its sleeve, and a couple of nice surprises (mostly in the final two movies) help take the edge off some of the disappointment, but by and large it's unremarkable and just a little sloppy.
Quon as a main character is probably the biggest letdown of the entire experience. He's one thousand years old, which means one thousand years to be affected by the tragic death of his brother, one thousand years spent helping the superhumans hide and live peaceful lives. He could have been complicated—bitter, wise, enigmatic, arrogant, worldly, or any number of things. After all, entire civilizations rose and fell with him watching from the sidelines, and he's burdened with the knowledge that he has outlived all of his past friends and will outlive all of his future friends. Doesn't take much imagination to see awesome potential in that concept. But instead, this is Quon: a simpering, simplistic imbecile with all of the onscreen presence of a rock, who mutters something corny like “because I must save everyone” in response to just about any question he's asked. The few attempts made to flesh him out and turn him into something more than that are lackluster. I really can't even fashion a creative way to rip on him, or a creative way to describe him, because he does not have a personality to speak of. He's actually at his most charismatic when he's in superhuman form, fighting a losing battle. The look of silent, dogged resolve on his face is preferable to his incessant smile and his trite shonen-inspired platitudes. He cannot carry a dramatic moment, and he cannot carry these films.
Sadly, the supporting roles all suffer from similar symptoms, and with few exceptions, most of them act like miniature Quons, either full of baseless optimism or quaking in fear—whatever is required of them by the plot. They have, again, little individual voice, or anything that differentiates them from each other, and most of what I begrudgingly call their “character arcs” consist of little more than a hint at a tragic backstory. Some of them are fun to watch, good for a moment's laugh, but that's about as far as it goes. Towa no Quon also has a strange habit of placing huge weight on side characters who have barely been introduced, and in one scene, Quon gives what I assumed was supposed to be a tearful and heartfelt speech to a child who had not yet received forty-five seconds of screentime. The films do strike an interesting note with two secondary villains, both cybernetically enhanced soldiers who fight against the superhumans—the cyborgs are treated poorly by their superhuman-hating superiors, and this causes them to question whether or not they're human anymore themselves, and how much different they are from the emerging superhumans that they're being sent to kill. That's probably the smartest bit of character drama that Towa no Quon manages to pull off, and it's one small drop of good in a pretty big bucket of mediocrity.
Purely in terms of art and animation, Studio Bones has a good reputation, and that, at least, is largely upheld by Towa no Quon. Visually, these movies end up about where you'd expect them to, looking better than the average television series but a few steps short of feature-film level. The backgrounds—dark, expansive cityscapes and forest-covered mountainsides, to name the most prominent—are sharply detailed and sometimes quite striking. The color palette is expansive, with an appreciable use of light artificial greens, blues, and purples that play well against some of the darker, earthier tones. With few exceptions, the animation is spot-on and the scenes of action are deftly choreographed. The design work is rather unambitious, and I'm sad to say there's nothing particularly distinctive or fresh about the way the characters look, either in human form or as superhumans/robots, but throughout all of the movies the quality of the art is at least maintained with a good degree of consistency.
The music is orchestral, and it practically screams “I am a big, important, epic score.” Not in a good way; it's all very one-note, the same deep, thrumming strings, menacingly advancing drum beats, and ominously droning wordless vocals over, and over, and over again. The score does come equipped with just enough variety to match the moments of lightheartedness and atmospheric tension, but even the latter are sometimes accompanied by those seemingly ceaseless drums and vocals. Almost every song sounds fit to herald an apocalypse, and that can help build the mood where it's appropriate, but the returns diminish as time wears on. It's still a competent soundtrack on some levels, but it's typical for this type of production, and it rehashes its heavier elements to the point of being just a little bit obnoxious and largely forgettable.
And, yes, “largely forgettable” is an apt description for Towa no Quon as a whole. There's nothing pushing this series of films into the realm of being truly bad, and at times they can be entertaining. But they represent a tired take on tired concepts, and, overall, an exceedingly bloodless endeavor. The presentation is certainly up to snuff, but the world of Towa no Quon itself and the people within it both feel like the products of cold and hasty construction, empty of thought and effort, devoid of any real heart or voice. These movies are a portrait of what it means to be uninspired.
First of all i would like to say i am not that fond of action animes,i am more like the peaceful type.So when i first saw this i wasn't that interested but it took only the first movie to change my mind.
I am writing this review based on the whole series.
Story(10): i don't like to give 10 to any anime because that would be too disrespectful to the masterpieces.I had no choice cause the plot is not that much but unique nonetheless.On the light this is a story about two sides fighting for their own ideals.In one sides the attractors who has awakened supernatural powers
and unable to control their powers that much and causing harm to the others around them fighting for their survival and wanting to live.On the other hand we have cyborg teams who are victims of the attractors directly or indirectly,sacrificed their emotions and body parts only to protect order and stop the attractors.
Thats what on the surface but in the dark every single of them has a dark side that haunts them.A past trauma,sin that makes them suffer every moment.Hated by everyone in the childhood,being called a monster,unable to become mentally stable going berserk causing harm to everyone they care for.bound by the chain of suffering they fight to survive.
The story centers around Quon a esp that lived for a thousand years,every moment of suffering and atoning sin for his untenability to protect his brother and becoming mentally stressed and going berserk and killing a lot of people.Now he lives in order to save the hunted before they become the hunter.he endures a large amount of pain in order to save the young ones from taking the same path he did.With his friends that he saved he goes against the cyborgs.
A twist after twist,sufferings,pains and cries of quon will surely make you in tears.
I won't call this a masterpiece but this one is great.touching is what i mean.I highly recommend this anime to everyone.
--------------------------Review contains minor spoilers---------------------------------------------------
Plot- In a futuristic Tokyo, unique human beings who have awakened distinct powers are being hunted by a secret organization named Custos. Known as "Attractors", these exceptional humans are joining forces to defend themselves. They are led by a boy named Quon, an idealist who is determined to save all the Attractors he can.
- This series is more like Japanese X-men version. Almost everything seems similar, mutants hiding in a special place getting trained and educated, how to control their powers etc. Quon is the main character or you can say Professor x of the series, he is determined to save all
the "Attractors" and to put them at the right path. He has the ability to sense others who are about to awaken their powers, as well as transforming into Insania Quon. It has 6 episodes/movies each 48 minutes long.
Genres- Action, Mystery, Super Power, Supernatural
Story- 7.5/10 (Nothing extraordinary, but it still has it's charm that got me hooked. The only con I found, There aren't any explanation to any character's sudden power development or why all the havoc around the city?!)
Characters- 8.5/10 ( Well, it is kinda superhero movie. So, every character is lovable, but this series offers no background story or character's history. Just goes right into the action!)
Art- 10/10 (It is done by " Bones" which is responsible for FMA and FMA:B. So, it goes without saying. It is full stylish action pack where fight scenes are well executed)
Sound- 10/10 (This is what steals the series for me, background music is just brilliant and the sounds effects is freaking awesome. I highly recommend you to watch it on 720p nothing below that!)
Enjoyment-8/10 (Overall, I enjoyed it. I ignored all the flaws, If you want series with great fight scenes and pump up background music. This series is for you.)
This is a review for the whole movie series and should be taken as such.
Tell me if you have heard this premise before, an organization of super-powered teenagers/children that are in hiding have to combat and rebel against an authoritarian task force created to weed out super-humans with lethal enforcement. if you thought this show is the X-Men you'd be kind of right. this show is basically an X-men clone. if it were to make enough interesting deviations from the formula I might have given it a higher score. but the only real selling point of the show is the animation AND BY GOD IS
THE ANIMATION IMPRESSIVE IN THESE MOVIES. If you have seen One-Punch Man or Death Parade its on that level of animation at points. also despite the lack of originality, the exciting fights and easy to follow story make it a very entertaining ride. the characters in this show can also an issue. the entire cast doesn't feel at all fleshed out and relies on two dimensional character archetypes to convey their personalities most of the time. the only interesting character narratives are the main character, Qwon, and one of the opposing cyborgs they fight, Epsilon. the main villains' motivations are also a problem as they are inconsistent throughout the story. Then there's the ending that screams read the manga which is annoying. despite all these flaws if you want a action series that you can turn your brain off to This can be a fun thrill ride that's basically a 12 episode anime in the form of 6 movies.
I came into Towa no Quon 1 with almost any expectations, having been linked to its page from another random anime I was viewing at the time. When I saw that it was a 6 part mini-movie series, and in the action genre as well, my interest was piqued. Katanagatari uses a similar 50 minutes per episode run-time, and the art and action in that had impressed me so well that I felt confident a new series with the same set up might as well, despite the different setting. This first episode isn't quite up to par with the greatness of that other series, but
it serves as an acceptable introduction to what I hope will be an above-average anime.
Towa no Quon 1 starts off displaying its greatest strength - action. In the very first scenes we are introduced to our two main competing factions in the story in the heat of battle. A militaristic, secret organization is targeting a terrified child running for his life in a brutally efficient manner, sending orders from a command HQ to multiple specialized units in the field. The music kicks in and delivers a pulsing beat and epic backdrop - the situation is tense as suddenly the child's body starts mutating and glowing with power, sending orbs of energy off randomly. Just as he appears to be doomed with the approach of the militarized attacks, another person with superpowers comes in to save him, fighting off an entire unit in epic style.
This is Quon - the quintessential hero of the tale. And he is introduced in absolutely beautiful, stylized action. The scenes are fast paced, full of small explosions, packed with intensity, and masterfully animated. The show often takes its time to go into slow motion to show off particle effects to make Quon look even cooler. The entire sequence is punchy and non-repetitive, yet manages to last for a satisfyingly long time. This is how the action in Towa no Quon plays out, and is the heart of the show. Future fights play out with less flair but are consistently good and escalate in danger. I can't wait to see where the series takes them in the next episode.
The sound is as good as the animation, which is necessary in a good action show. The background music is suitable but never over-stated, and shines during moments of intensity. I also found the ending theme that played during the credits ("Reckless" by LAZY) exceptionally fitting for the action vibes with its gritty hard rock vibes and good guitar solo. It made me watch the credits all the way to the end, which is rare for me in anime as I usually can't wait to start watching the next episode.
The voice actors all do a good job at portraying the characters they've been billed, but there's not any time yet for any of them to shine. This episode is mostly an introduction to all the characters, to allow us to establish where each of them fit in the world and their relations to each other.
Thus, the characters mostly feel straightforward and dull. Even Quon can only be seen as caring/sympathetic, who is steadfastly focused on saving as many "Attractors" as he can from the evil organization. We are given an introduction to characters on both side of the conflict, and I imagine that this will be used to elicit sympathetic reactions later on. But this is only the first episode in the series, so I believe all the characters are introduced acceptably for development later.
Since I did not research this show very much before I started watching, I was expecting it to be more serious and targeted for a slightly older audience (similar to Ghost in the Shell). This is not the case, as the show carries a lighter tone targeted at a younger teen audience. Most of the "Attractors" (the 'good' guys) are either children or young adults, and the members of the secret organization are all older. It definitely has the feel of "us against the world," with the theme of outcasts from society banding together to live and survive.
Overall, by itself this episode is a solid introduction to a promising series. It has excellent and serious action scenes with a superb audio. It is more light-hearted than dark, but it has potentially serious themes and sets up what may become a heavy conflict between the underdog and a villainous defender of society and rules. While it may not be amazing on its own, it is certainly an enjoyable watch, and will give a good taste for anyone considering watching the whole series.
(This review goes to all parts of the movie series.)
Now, here’s a thing that I never noticed in most recent anime before and that is called the Movie Series……now this is definitely different from the term “OVA” as in movie series are released theatrically while OVAs are direct-to-video. Many examples of anime movie series include Kara No Kyōukai (or The Garden of Sinners), Broken Blade & Mobile Suit Gundam UC Unicorn. The film series is directed by Umanosuke Iida, known for directing anime such as Devilman, Vandread, Hellsing (the original one), Mobile Suit Gundan: The 08th MS Team & Shangri-La. Unfortunately, before the movies were
released, he passed away of lung cancer at the age of 49 in 2010, and that’s the same year that Satoshi Kon passed away from pancreatic cancer..…..OK, let’s just get to the review.
In a futuristic Tokyo, unique human beings who have awakened distinct powers are being hunted by a secret organization named Custos. Known as "Attractors", these exceptional humans are joining forces to defend themselves. They are led by a boy named Quon, an idealist who is determined to save all the Attractors he can.
Now here’s the thing about these films: They are quite reminiscent of the dark superhero genre and mostly the X-Men franchise, which are the majority of which they are parallel to, such as, ordinary people who have these powers that they can’t control, which have affected their past and scarred them for life and they are being taken in a facility, much like Professor Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters to an extent and like that, they are being hunted down by a secret organization that wants to do them in. Yeah, this idea isn’t exactly wholly original but it’s an interesting concept and premise and I can say for that reason alone, it works on paper and it does work on the big screen.
As for the characters, they are actually very stock characters with hit or miss qualities about them with having powers that can cause consequences and mostly regret. The main character, Quon, who has lived over a millennia, from witnessing his family being slaughtered and wanting vengeance ever since. Now I say Quon was some similarities to Wolverine but here’s the difference between them….Wolverine has more charisma and personality than Quon as that character seems unmotivated most of the time but he is not the all-mighty God-mode being that most people would suspect as he gets his ass kicked a lot in fights but he does manage to heal himself after. There’s Yuri, the flirty but competent attractor whose powers aren’t exactly developed but can maintain it; Kiri, the innocent young girl whose gift is her voice and with it, she can only use it to heal or to destroy and I got to admit, that trait is close to being the character Rogue. Tei is the telepathic woman who can communicate with others from many distances but can relive painful memories of the past. Miu is the young girl that can communicate to animals but her limiter enables her to speak normally and also the animal’s language. Takao is the smart-alecky, lazy, but complacent attractor who talks shit sometimes but not so much to be an asshole. Yuma is the boy whose power is to erupt colored orbs from his body whenever he’s upset or angry and the antagonist Genji Kamishiro is the class-A comic book-style villain who wants to control all the Attractors and to gain order……so, yeah, he’s the typical villain and last but not least Towa is Quon’s younger brother, who is believed that whoever contacts him will have their powers increased.
As for the animation, I can safely say that BONES did an excellent job on this, especially the fighting animation where it feels so fast-paced and often gritty sometimes and that goes to the art style of the show, too, especially with some scenes that would be gruesome for younger eyes. The main theme for the show called “Reckless” by LAZY is somewhat thrilling and yet unintentionally funny for every time I hear, “Feel Rock Emotion, Burning Rock Emotion” because I know they use Engrish in some of the lyrics, but it still feel silly once you heard it so many times.
For the dub by Sentai Filmworks, I can see why I said that Quon had no charisma and that’s thanks to Corey Hartzog and his lackluster performance as Quon sounds too chill, even in a tense situation, but I will say that, I’m pleased with the rest of their performances including Jessica Boone as Yuri, Emily Neves as Kiri & Monica Rial as Tei.
FINAL VERDICT: After seeing some lackluster titles from BONES (No.6, Ghost Slayers Ayashi), this is an improvement and the kind of quality that BONES should have put in most of their shows. It’s a concept that seems foreign to Japan but if handled well, it can turn to be pretty impressive. I could easily recommend this to people who are akin to any Marvel comic character.
This is my first review and I'm not really sure how to write this but ill try to...
I should say this first: Towa no quon, despite the pretty good character design, art, and action scenes, did not reach my expectations.
The story was the usual cliche: powerful boy tries to save everyone from bad guys. There weren't anything unexpected for me.
The art was pretty nice, the characters looked great, the amusement park looked cool. So not much criticism on that one.
I didn't have the sound on, so I can't comment on it.
The characters were the worst of the lot. They, especially Quon, looked good but the
personalities were just dull. Especially Quon. I read another review that said all Quon says is "I want to save everyone." Watched the anime. So true. The whole "saving people thing" was about 50% of all he says. "I want to save everyone." "I want to save her." "I did this because I want to save everyone." He should have more personality and say something MORE INTERESTING. At least he isn't a total weakling. The other characters were nothing memorable so I don't really care.
For some reason, despite all these critics, I actually enjoyed some parts in it, like the action scenes and the last ten minutes of it. However, there are definitively better animes to watch than this one.
So in the end, I rated this a 7/10 due to character design, action, and art.