Every now and then there's an anime that's released that walks the delicate line of being called absolute garbage and absolute FUCKING garbage. These shows tend to focus heavily on shock factor deaths as a one trick pony, which in turn removes any integrity it may have. Some notable cases include Elfen Lied, Gantz, Mirai Nikki, Deadman Wonderland and now the next anime to carry the torch Terra Formars, has stepped up for the challenge.
Story? What story? Government conspiracies, the mission of Bug II and anything else the show brought up remains unresolved. Plot points that go nowhere and simply end abruptly. It's
like slowly going up the rails of a roller coaster and getting ready for the ride but the ride never happens. The show treats the material as more of a glorified add to read the manga than a stand alone work. This co-dependence on the source material to make a cohesive story is just lazy.
You'd think by now that CGI will be used in better effect in complimenting a show, right? Well, Terra Formars spits on the face of innovation, giving us hoards of horrid CGI cockroaches that rival that of Gonzo's track record. And to top it all off, it's simply the same design copied and pasted. The character designs, also deserve special mention for looking rather stiff. It feels like no effort or love was placed into this series. The only noteworthy mention should be about the grim backgrounds of the Mars environment.
The same tracks were played continuously, showing no variation at all. Nothing worth listening to on its own and nothing that really grabs your attention. They simply serve to follow the scenes, but does nothing to heighten them. Voice performances were fine. Each character's voice actor matched their given traits, standouts being Michelle K. Davis. Of course, it will all be forgotten almost as soon as you're finished with the series.
I'm not even sure this cast can even be considered "characters". They didn't even manage to make them 2 dimensional. There's more depth in your run of the mill shounen protagonist than any of these "characters". They mostly follow the lines of common fodder or OP roach killer.
Throwing in a depressing backstory doesn't qualify as proper characterization. Especially if we don't even remember them by the time the 20min run time is up. It seems like characters were only introduced to be killed by the next episode. Not only giving you no time to even care about them, but it also broke immersion when death is treated with no tension. Just a fodder fest of people we don't give a fuck about.
I'm a completionist, the only reason I even finished this nonsense was because of the short run time. Unlike other nonsensical series like Elfen Lied, Terra Formars became more of a chore to watch. I'd rather take my chances watching another Michael Bay film that sitting through this again.
Terra Formars was simply another rushed adaptation that felt more like an eyegasm for the fans than an actual show. If you're a fan of excessive gore or the manga then this might be for you.
-I haven’t read the manga.
-I watched the uncensored release of the anime.
Terraformars, an anime about a bunch of genetically modified humans with animal powers that get sent to Mars to exterminate a race of hyper evolved humanoid cockroaches called Johj. Sounds radical, right? Unfortunately it isn’t and here i’ll explain why.
Really, there’s not a whole lot to talk about in terms of story. The entire plot is just an excuse to get the characters to Mars as quickly as possible and make them fight a whole lot and i suppose it does achieve that just fine.
The main problem with the storytelling in Terraformars is
For a series that prides itself on being nothing but dumb action and violent fights, it’s actually painfully slow. We get shots that linger forever for no good reason, characters standing around doing and saying nothing for extended periods of time, tons of narrator delivered exposition and a ludicrous amount of flashbacks that sometimes take up the entire duration of an episode, while not really adding anything substantial. The best moments of the show are when it throws away any pretense of storytelling and just goes into full-on hot-blooded action-mode. Unfortunately these moments are rarer than you might assume and usually over quite quickly.
Special shout-out to the shitty worldbuilding of this series.
Terraformars is apparently set 600 years in the future, yet aside from space travel, genetic manipulation and terraforming i guess, no technological advancements were made by the human race. The people back on earth still drive the same cars, dress in the same clothes and use the same fucking smartphones as we do today. Why even set the series this far in the future, if you’re not gonna use it for some interesting worldbuilding?
The lightning fast evolution of the humanoid cockroaches is ridiculous anyway, may as well have set it fifty years in the future and not expose your complete lack of imagination.
Oh yeah, there’s also some government conspiracy subplot, but no one cares.
The series doesnt’t even have any conclusion at all, it’s set up for a sequel that will undoubtedly happen considering the popularity of it’s manga counterpart.
The characters of Terraformars are about as boring and one dimensional as they come. The series utilizes constant long-ass flashbacks with sappy background stories to flesh out the characters, but it never works out, the characters remain uninteresting and all the flashbacks achieve is to kill any feeling of momentum this action series might have had.
I shit you not, there’s one character whose entire backstory involves people in his life telling him what a boring person he is.
However, this fleshing out only applies to a handful of the surprisingly large cast of Terraformars. The rest? Nameless cannon fodder that is absolutely and utterly useless and usually spend their time sitting around waiting to be killed.
Also, holy fuck Terraformars, your only important German character is named Adolf, are you fucking shitting me? Would it have killed the writers to spend five seconds to google more appropriate German names?
The OP is a generic fast paced buttrock track and it’s just kinda eh, but i can’t shake the feeling that it doesn’t really fit the series. I suppose i expected something a bit darker and more atmospheric.
The ED i don‘t even really remember to be honest, the music of the series in general is fairly forgettable.
As far as voice acting goes, it’s all fitting for the characters, but no one in the cast really delivers a standout performance.
The character designs are one of the few things in Terraformars i can praise. As someone who appreciates semi realistic human designs in anime, this stuff is right up my alleyway. The animal transformations of the humans also look pretty cool.
The same thing can’t be said of the primary antagonists of the series, unfortunately. The designs of the humanoid cockroaches or Johj have gained some notoriety for being 'racist', as they look almost like caricatures of large muscular black guys. I looked into it and apparently they are based on the homo erectus and not black people.
Looking at it that way, the design makes some sense, but is still not a great choice, as the Johj look silly and not particularly threatening. I feel like this is a wasted opportunity, the creators of the series could have created something truly horrifying, considering the creatures are based on fucking cockroaches of all things. The Johj could have been some serious nightmare fuel, instead they are silly cavemen.
Animation in the series is fine when it counts, the fight scenes namely. It’s fairly consistent and the battles feel impactful, violent and on occasion even well choreographed. Too bad the color palette is so ugly, as all the colors in Terraformars look washed out and muddy.
I suppose this was to give the series a darker and gritty look, but it ends up just being unappealing.
There’s also this distracting noise filter that they kept using seemingly at random. What was the point of that? It just made the already so-so visuals of the series look shittier whenever it was active.
I’m not gonna lie, as much as i shit on this series, there were some pretty kickass moments hidden in there, namely whenever the action was in full effect, but they are few and far between and get marred by all the problems plagueing this series. If nothing else, at least Terraformars is not particularly long and won’t waste a whole lot of your time.
And this may sound unbelievable, but the educational value of Terraformars is actually surprisingly high (that is, more than nothing). You will pick up a lot of weird animal facts in this series, so there’s that.
Terraformars is a series with a whole buttload of problems. Even if you are looking for a short, violent, action series, which is exactly what Terraformars is, there’s a lot of better stuff out there that you should check out instead.
I give it a final rating of 3/10.
As always, please excuse any grammatical mistakes, as English is not my first language. And please feel free to leave me some feedback, i really want to improve.
You know something no one wants to see at a lunch or dinner table? Cockroaches. Those little critters stalks around with their creepy legs and spreads disgusting odor near your delicious food. Worst yet, they want your food. But do you know what’s even more disgusting or perhaps terrifying? It’s when you become the food. No lie. Terra Formars reverses the situation when humans are the prey as cockroaches (also known as Terra Formars) hunt down humans to eliminate them from existence. There’s something to think about…
For a series based off of the same name, adaptation pacing becomes a chore to handle. I don’t give
much credit for the studio or director when they do a sloppy job as the first few episodes can really make people wonder if this is all worth it. Forget the word ‘all’, but it’s more like partial considering the first few episodes broadcasted on TV were obstructed by arsine censorship. (they do fix it later though) But beyond that technical point, Terra Formars isn’t really a groundbreaking show.
Taking for face value, the show is actually pretty simple to understand. It takes place in a futuristic setting far beyond our present year. We also get alien species known as the Terra Formars, creatures who look like cockroaches but are many times its size with irregular body structure and abnormal thirst for destruction. Then, there are the humans that fights them on planet Mars. Actually, their original goal is to collect research examples as a deadly virus has taken hold on the human population but now they are playing a case of survival game against these creatures. As unoriginal as the premise sounds, the show has plenty of reasons to why viewers might be interested. The idea of fighting against alien species is thought provoking as it opens many opportunities to explore the show’s gimmicks, mechanics, and characters. The problem is that the first episode leaves open a gap that needs to be filled when in terms of getting everything started. It launches the characters on full scale towards their mission and skips their background and origins. That’s not the main problem though as the show accelerates fast into outer space for the main course. There’s not much time for preparation either as the crew gets ambushed on their way to space.
This season covers the Annex I arc detailing the stories of a group of crew members including lead protagonist Komachi Shokichi. Made up of members of many different countries of origins, the series’ characterization is shallow at best for the first half of the season. We don’t’ find out too much about much of the main characters except a select few such as Komachi. The case of death flags are also raised high for certain characters as flashbacks are played and their actions are recorded as last wills. However, the show does give more sympathy and depth for other characters later on. A prominent example is Adolf who is highlighted by flashbacks to characterize his motives and roles in the series. And as such, the reality can easily be realized of the cruelty on the frontlines. After all, the show is clearly violent, gory, and obviously isn’t afraid to kill anyone in the show. Whether you’re a badass action girl like Michelle or a first year newbie, Terra Formars preys on humans as if they are helpless drones. And to be honest, this show doesn’t stray far from that as humans are portrayed as the underdog. However, action does contradict this later on as we see humans fight back in a tale that can be described as “bug war”. I label it as such because humans who have experimented on themselves are able to adapt insect-like attributes and possesses their abilities to fight on par with the Terra Formars. For the action itself though, this show can only be watchable when it’s not obstructed the black censors of death. The original TV broadcasted aired the first three episodes that made itself look like a comedy. When you get scenes blocked by black bars or basketball shaped ovals, it really makes itself look like a joke. (example: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BzmOsvCCIAARgDt.jpg) Luckily, the show eventually got uncensored versions although the gore is still not as explicit as the manga. While shock value may sometimes be looked down upon as trying to sell its product, I think it’s necessary for this show to adapt that with justice. This is because the show is violent. It is explicitly gory that needs to get the message across of what a sci-fi horror should be like. Although certain scenes are left out from the manga, the uncensored action is tolerable with sensible OST.
On the scientific side of the story, the show falls apart with the explanation. In retrospect, it is vague and hard to take in all at once. We don’t know much about the origins of the Terra Formars besides their basic attributes and we can make from their evolution. Speaking of which, the show actually adapts more of that as we find out how well the cockroaches adapt to their environment. Still, the generational concept weakens itself and tries way too hard when it comes to its elements. It’s lazy when it comes to crafting the story by skipping certain parts while lauding viewers to experience what the ‘bug war’ is like. But to experience that, the show also needs to make us feel attached to the characters. Unfortunately, it’s far from achieving that with the certain deaths of various key characters. I do give some credit for the daring risks this show takes though as well as some unpredictable twists that comes by a few times. However, Terra Formars is more like a sci-fi horror that is treated as an action flick rather than a creative story. It has this engaging premise but is over-egged with saturated action with not enough context.
In terms of artwork, the show is crude on most parts but not in terms of actual quality. It simply creates a mature atmosphere with the main characters in this futuristic setting. Speaking of which, the series hardly has any world building so don’t expect the setting to steer its engine towards that direction. What you do have are adult characters, in contrast to the teenagers we often see trying to save the world. This is actually a positive and refreshing to see as we can tell the series has a more serious feeling. The characters are designed to look like troops ready to go to war. Their face expressions tells of a tale of horror just by looking at them. Besides some oddball fan service on occasions, the series has decent artwork and fitting character designs. However, the Terra Formars are crafted in a way that can spark some controversy because they resemble Homo Erectus. It’s also hard to take them seriously with their ridiculously shaped eyes, overly enhanced muscle structure, or just in general of what they look like that seemingly resemble humans.
Soundtrack has a moderate coordination with some suitable OST supplemented by the OP and ED songs. The background music is fitting but repetitively used on certain episodes. Not only that but emotional scenes sometimes lack the atmosphere that it tracks to convey. As for the character voice mannerism, I can hardly remember any of them besides a few climatic moments. Almost none of them stand out much since they are screaming most of the time while fighting for their lives. The Terra Formars are probably only memorable for their actions and occasional groans. Most of the time, your headphones will be filled with screams of terror. No intelligence. No credible humor. Just a of bucket load of hellish cries.
In the end, this shows is a glorification of a mixed bag adaptation. While it reasonably adapts some of the core elements, its main problems lies with the world building and weak story. Its unoriginality and generic tropes with invasion and sci-fi horrors themes may makes it seem like it can be interesting. However, its lack of charisma and it’s hard to fathom what the show is trying to even achieve. Fighting against the Terra Formars, saving mankind, or just showing us some sci-fi adventure with shock and cruelty. This show is like a callous cash-in with an attempt to adapt an engaging premise but never able to make the cut.
One of the most frightening organisms on the planet is so miniscule that it's a wonder that it exists in the first place, let alone causes massive harm. This organism is, of course, the virus. A tiny, technically lifeless thing whose only function is to replicate to keep its existence going. In biology, it's a rather fascinating phenomenon that has been in place for millions, if not billions, of years. While human technology has improved by leaps and bounds in an immensely shorter time span, there are still questions and unknowns we have yet to answer. Among them
include nearly incurable diseases. With this premise in mind, Terra Formars takes shape. That shape being a crooked and jagged mess.
Terra Formars starts with a man named Akari, whose fighting prowess has given him the opportunity to join a select group of people aimed at finding a cure to a deadly disease that has plagued the Earth. Him and many others undergo an operation to mutate their bodies and board a spaceship destined for Mars and the supposed answers they seek.
The story telling within the anime follows a rather inconsistent style. It begins by following a majority of the groups confined to the ship, providing us with a glimpse into who is on board, the countries involved, and the gravity of the situation. Once on Mars, the focus shifts from a group mentality to an individual one. At this point, characters are singled out and, for usually less than a full episode, he or she is given a small amount of background. The idea here is to give us a sense of connection. That the people we're watching risk their lives on a distant planet are more than just fodder to the cause. But it never comes off this way (save for one character, more later). The show tried to focus on the characters over the story because the story itself isn't compelling enough to engage the audience. They attempt to mix in some plot elements, such as parallel stories and espionage, but it isn't executed nearly as well as it could be.
This execution is unquestionably the result of the core of Terra Formars: the fighting. Instead of attempting to showcase more of what the world has to offer or how the mission is more meaningful than it at first seems, it instead highlights the fighting between the humans and the cockroaches. This prominent focus therefore defers to gore and violence instead of actual narrative balance.
Due to the nature (if you will) of the show, part of the "allure" is in the powers of the characters at play. The problem is that, in order for the viewers to understand the mutations, a considerable amount of literal narration and time is spent on discussing what animals the humans are using. More often than not, it occurs during the fights themselves. Meaning, besides the story telling already being as choppy as it is, what the anime puts on a pedestal also succumbs to the same choppy issues. The mutations may have ties to the characters' pasts, but the inelegance of their incorporation within the story leaves much to be desired.
Terra Formars maintains a rather mature look throughout the season. The characters themselves are usually well defined, with sharp lines and contours for the faces and throwbacks to the actual animals they are portraying. The same can't be said for the environments. The vast majority of the locations are usually just rocky terrain and boring to look at, with almost zero variety. As for the enemies, CG is used for the cockroaches when a large amount of them are on screen at once. It can be a little off-putting at first, but over time one gets used to seeing them in that state.
Actual animation suffers a bit, unfortunately. Not only do there exist a lot of still frames and only mouth movements for many of the characters during dialogue, but many of the fights contain little choreography. Coupled with the fact that the majority of the battles contain zoomed in shots or little animation, the core element of the anime is a major letdown across the board.
The anime can be watched either censored or uncensored, but it is not worth it to see with the former in place. The censorship present when active makes many of the scenes completely impossible to watch, once again impeding the anime's shtick (very violent killings).
Putting it rather bluntly, the entire cast is unmistakably bad. It's only saving grace is that there exists a single character who, without him, would render everyone as forgettable. I'll start with the bad and work towards the (only) good.
One of the first characters introduced is Akari, a rough and tumble dude dead set on saving the girl he loves from the disease gripping her. His motivations are clear, yet his underlying strength is not. Taking the chance to create a better tomorrow for the ones he loves, he accepts the task presented to him, hoping to do everything in his power to bring peace back home, even if said power consumes him. He sounds rather intriguing on paper, but beyond the first episode or so, we never really learn much more about him. That is to say, he never again takes the spotlight long enough to make him relevant to the story at hand. It's a shame, considering he is one of the cast members who we learn a little bit about. His underutilization sets the precedent for everyone else involved.
Sheila embodies kindness. Free spirited and filled with generosity, she tags along with the rest of the squad not as a fighter but more as a cheerleader. Unable to mask her fear of the mission at hand, she clings to a romance that she most likely knows deep down can never be. Her friendship with Alex and Marcos shows that, despite her ladylike demeanor, she isn't afraid of helping those in need. The precedent set earlier is used once more; she is shown, talked about, then subsequently put to the side for the rest of anime. It's a little more forgivable this time, since her overall purpose was to give Marcos a reason to fight. The justification is there, but not executed well enough simply because her character feels just as useless as the rest of the people on board.
The only (seriously, the only) good character found within Terra Formars is Adolph. The byproduct of a terrible experiment, his broken spirit and reason for fighting feel the most human, despite the beast within him. His dedication to the position of captain and composed behavior in the face of an incomprehensible scenario make him a sight to behold both on and off the battlefield. He's a great character not just for being bad-ass, which he most certainly is, but because he actually contains some semblance of depth. Where he begins and where he ultimately ends help to showcase the futility of getting one's hopes up. A tragic character, his inclusion gave this one a small light in the sea of darkness.
Suffering "Mirai Nikki Syndrome", arguably the best part of the show is the OP. The back-and-forth vocals coupled with the fast guitar make it extremely catchy and great fun to listen to, even outside of the anime itself.
The ED is at least okay. The drums bring about the tempo, the piano adds to its gracefulness, and the vocals are slow and simple to follow.
The soundtrack is largely forgettable, save for the signature, six-note, up-and-down piece that plays when a battle is about to begin. The sound effects involved at least add to the brutality of the aforementioned fighting.
In regards to voice acting, there were no standout performances to be had. The only notable voices were the cockroaches and their "Jo Ji" which is the extent of their vocabulary, yet the meaning of varies wildly.
When the anime first started, the censorship was quite unbearable. Black shading and polka-dots filled the screen, making much of the on-screen action hidden to the viewer. If the entire point of the anime is to show grotesque ways of murdering humans and "cockroaches," then it should be quite obvious that any form of censorship would ruin the intended goal. It was eventually alleviated, but the damage was done.
The anime doesn't focus on much else. Some attempts at humor are made, but it never tries too hard at it. Same for the drama; outside of Adolf, the rest feels lackluster and completely falls flat. Watching the good guys use their animal abilities should be really fun to watch. And at times, it is. Watching Alex hurl metallic spheres at incredible speeds, seeing Michelle crushing a foe to smithereens, or witnessing Adolf's almost god-like powers can be quite cool. But these moments are too few and far between to make the show compelling enough to keep one interested.
Terra Formars wasn't trying to do much. But even for what it set out to do, the execution just wasn't there. The story is bland, the characters are bad, and the rest is boring. Perhaps in the future, when missions to Mars are actually feasible, we can send this anime to where it belongs: anywhere but here.
Story: Bad, inconsistent, too much focus on the fights, poorly placed explanations
Animation: Bad, lame art style, little animation even for the battles, too much censorship
Characters: Bad, Adolf saves the day
Sound: Fine, good OP, okay ED, bad soundtrack, average VA work
Enjoyment: Bad, literally just humans squashing bugs
Warning: this review is written for the average anime fan and not other critics since that wouldnt help anyone and would just be me ranting
So I began watching terra formars mid airing, i had always wanted to check it out (since seeing it on anichart) and i did so. to be honest i had high expectations, out of all the anime this season this looked the most unique. after finishing the first episode my expectations took a huge hit (this was one of those slow beginnings of introducing characters and backgrounds). i almost dropped it but i didnt and im glad i didnt because on
ep 2 is where the real meat of the show started.
now if you cant tell already this anime has gore and i started watching this on crunchyroll (god the censoring was terrible), luckily though i found a sight that had it fully uncensored and was able to take in the full experience.
Story - 6
now theres not much of a story besides people going to mars to collect samples of a virus to create a vaccine, but (tiny spoiler, kinda) twist is "terra formars" attack the ship and now theyre stuck on mars surrounded by hordes of creepy humanoid roaches (very attack on titanish). however there is a rescue ship coming to mars to save them and the story becomes how they survive until then (which is really interesting since ive never seen any other any that say "you have 1 month dont die until then")
Art - 8
i still have no idea how there were able to do the cockroaches right, even if it was cgi how were they able to make it so unnoticeable, this i really dont know. all the characters were all animated decently well, you can tell there was no lazy work ... except maybe in some of the first fight scenes. most of the fight scenes were great you see a fist then the fist smashing into the exoskeleton of a roach but in the first fight there were one or two attacks that were set on a black background. then if you look at the last battlefield (the one that had nukes fired upon) it looks stunning, maybe it was the flames or maybe just the gradience (them gradience)
Sound - 7
sound is not something i can say much about, the voice actors all did their jobs well and the series wasnt really reliant on the soundtrack even in the fights scenes and when there is it's in the background to keeps your heart pumping. the op and ending doesnt stand out that much either, it wasnt anything bad, it was semi good and fitted the series and thats what i think is important
Characters - 6
i would like to mention that on the ship to mars there were 99 people on board, luckily most of them were slaughtered before ep 3. yes, the show does kill off many people, but most the characters that dies arnt that important, in fact i think in the entire show only 3 important characters dies and i only say important is because they had backstories and screen time. Still the characters arnt that deep especially the main character whom i can only say is main character because he was introduced first (most characters gets equal screen time after the first episodes). i wont say the characters are stereotypes since all characters fall under a stereotype but they do have certain traits such as the happy go lucky one (that obviously dies), the heartless commanding one, or/and the charismatic cheif. many of the characters also get episodes for themselves with backstories on why they chose to come to mars and how they became who they are. a type of character development you could say since any other kind would be kinda difficult while fighting cockroach after cockroach. also, having an attention span of 5 seconds i skip most of the backstories besides adolf's whos backstory was a great buildup to the climax for the character and story.
Enjoyment - 9
ok, i gotta admit it i did get sucked into continually watching this week after week, what can say i just like how mindless and fun it is. one major reasons i kept watching was to see the powers of the next character and what species theyre based on. each character in the show fight with an ability based solely on a species on earth, for example if your based on an alpheid shrimp (which can fire jets of air) then your ability would be that, stick your hand in front of a cockroaches face and blow it off.
i enjoyed Terra Formars the same way i enjoyed Attack on Titan, seeing characters put in a situation where everything is against them and seeing what happens next
It should be worth mentioning that the show will be finished in another season (if it comes out), the last scene scene is actually really similar to the last scene of btooom they even have the same helicopter
i cant guaranty youll enjoy this but its definitely worth taking a look and if you do want to watch this then watch till episode 2/3 then decide to continue or stop watching since episode 1 has stopped alot of people
Overall - 7.2
1:sit back an relax
2:watch the anime for the reason of enjoying it and nothing else like how your suppose to watch anime
I would not even have known about Terra Formars if I had not seen a short YouTube clip months back. And right now, I am so glad I clicked on that video.
Futuristic setting on Mars where people with animal powers (mostly insects) fight humanoid cockroaches. Interesting premise to say the least. At first, I had low expectations for the show. Reviews for the first few episodes had been very low for the extreme censorship when it was originally airing. However, I had watched the series after all those black screens were taken down and must say that the show surprised me. I found
the story to be exciting and interesting at the same time through every episode. The scientific facts scattered through the whole thing show a great amount of research was done by the creator. Terra Formars is a smart show for sure, and if you get distracted during the scientific outbursts by the narrator, confusion will likely set in.
The environments, character models, and animation all look fantastic. I love the darker theme to the colors shown. The fighting and gore is well done for both the roaches and humans, making the show feel more mature. Blood isn't splattering all over the place in every fight unrealistically like in other shows, which is a relief.
Great soundtrack overall. Whether it be for tragic, action-packed, or horrific moments, there are songs to match each. The opening and ending are also well done. Voices match their characters, and the sound effects go with what is happening on screen.
I like how there is no central main character in Terra Formars. This is the story of Annex 1 and all its divisions, so multiple characters in various divisions get different amounts of character development and back-story, which really makes it unpredictable when trying to guess who will die in the near or far future. There is not a single character on the human side I was hoping would get killed off, and I love the charm some of them have. There were more than a few unexpected funny moments, and they didn't feel childish in execution.
This was not only a fun show, but a great one, and these 13 episodes were the best time I have ever had with an anime thus far. The end of the final episode did leave off on a cliffhanger, but the manga has not even finished yet, so hopefully there will be a season 2 soon enough.
-Fantastic art for environments, characters, fight scenes, and gore.
-Amazing soundtrack, good voices
-Likable characters, lengths of development provide unpredictability for who dies.
-Not only a fun show, but a great one
Every year theres allways those anime wich generally are deemed has "bad" or "mediocre" because of their inconsistent nature and their unpopularity, they strive to get a certain fanbase however this "try hard" factor usually winds up becoming their very downfall.. However if theres a show that despite being unpopular and mediocre manages to be a hell of a ride, that would be Terra Formars.. At first glance, naturally, terra formars looks like your survival horror show that it takes itself so serious its laughable.. and thats exactly what it is.. the best part of Terra Formars is the fun you get from it..
The art is really messy and misguided, the antagonists are crazy stupid and the characters are there to either get killed or to support the non-existent drama.. I do have to acknowledge Terra formars for their story telling wich isnt bad.. actualy its quite fair however this loses all of its impact due to the small lenght of the show and weak character development, i also have to point out the fact that they explain really well every "power" and insect characteristics in a fast and efficient way.. It is true and i cannot deny that Terra Formars is nothing but a popcorn flic, and that is enough to make this show superior to various other shows of its kind..
The sound was actually fair.. I loved the opening and the ending, the background music was fitting and reasonable.. The real factor of this show is the enjoyment you get from its mindless fun every episode.. Its far from being good but it certainly isnt bad.. I give this show medium-low priority its the kind of show you watch after a long tiring day of work something to laugh at and relax without thinking to much.
Ps: Turn off your brains while watching this.. It will enchance your experience
Seeing so many negative reviews for Terra Formars, I decided to offer a positive view instead. Note that I would probably give an 8 for this anime, but because of it's pure enjoyment factor, I'm jacking it up to a 9.
What I like about Terra Formars is that the universe is much more...developed, than the typical fare that action anime gives us. It's not a bunch of teenagers running around saving the world, but a people who have been chosen from a diversity of backgrounds tasked with collecting samples to cure a virus that has surfaced on Earth. Questionable scientific methods aside (i'm going to
chalk it up to 500 years worth of scientific research). The premise itself is interesting enough: cockroaches were sent to Mars to Terra Form (hence the name), to perhaps make it suitable for human habitation in the future. But fast forward 500 hundred years and these cockroaches are some bigas$ humanoid mutations each with the strength of an army. The irony of becoming to the cockroaches on Mars what they are to humans on Earth seems to be presented again and again as the narrative switches between Earth and Mars.
To combat these the humans hybrid themselves with various animals, taking on the fighting ability of various dangerous animals from all over the world. I really enjoyed the exposition on the different kinds of animals and how their abilities would fare in human combat. It kept me interested.
The anime also had political elements which are always lacking in the genre. Subversion, typical politicking and allied blocs of nations with their own agendas provide a nice overarching story to complement the straight up massacre (on both sides) that constantly seems to be happening on Mars.
What seems to lack though is the presence of interesting characters. I only seem to be attached to one, and that is Michelle (and perhaps Adolf) - the others simply blur into the background for me. They aren't exactly original or well thought-out, and I've found myself feeling nothing in many of the 'character development' scenes. However, I will put that aside because Terra Formars isn't trying to be something it's not. And for that, I won't nitpick at the lack of compelling characterisation.
Terra Formars makes me wonder at what will happen next, and though not necessarily original, is highly enjoyable and unpredictable. The plot is enough for me to continue watching definitely, and the themes on extinction and survival are palpable throughout the show. More than that though, it is action-packed, with a decent soundtrack and gets my blood pumping when I watch it, and that in itself is worth the watch.
A few weeks ago a friend of mine dared me to embark on a dangerous mission - one which could subject me to emotional turmoil even if I emerged alive. Turns out a bunch of no-name idiots were waltzing off to Mars to gather samples and research a cure for some lethal virus, while trying not to be ripped apart by giant mutant body builders with cockroach heads.
My mission? To sit around watching these idiots pretend to actually be doing something for 13 episodes while my senses are senselessly abused! I accepted, on the condition that this unnamed friend watch “Btooom!” in exchange. After completing
my mission, I can safely say I’d rather re-watch that twice over than tune in to this clueless “performance” again.
Said performance is Terra Formars; the “action” survival “horror” anime that doesn’t care about either itself or its viewers; the show that feebly pretends to offer everything while offering absolutely nothing. Well, nothing except a few ridiculous, laughably edgy “death and gore” scenes in the first few episodes, which are so over the top at times that they transcend being horrifying and become plain silly. A certain head-severing spinal cord whip comes to mind.
If you really must watch this show (and I strongly advise against it), at least make it the uncensored version, otherwise you’re stripping out what little enjoyment there is to be gained from this animated fecal matter, be it for s(c)h(l)ock factor or simply laughing at the show’s tryhard nature. But I’m sorry to say that even such ironic enjoyment from the biology-defying bloodbaths is in short supply here, since both the comical absurdity and the actual shock value quickly dissipate as such scenes get toned down after the first several episodes. This leaves the show to rely on its actual substance and merit.
Hah, I wish. Terrible Formars goes to great lengths to muck up everything it tries to accomplish (...well, “tries” is pushing it), and to even greater lengths to ensure it’s as crushingly devoid of ANY substance whatsoever as a 5-hour season can be.
Don’t be fooled by its promises of a sci-fi survival story. There isn’t one. It literally sets up the basic premise, sticks the idiots on mars and then a bunch of said idiots and some roaches drop dead with no meaningful progress in sight. Plot threads vanish as quickly as they appear to never be brought up again. None of it leads anywhere and none of it ends up mattering as far as the viewer is concerned. Even if I wanted to make this a spoiler review, I’m not even sure there’s anything I could say about the plot that could spoil the viewing… “experience”. It’s like dangling a fish hook, waiting for a bite, then immediately cutting the line - on purpose.
Rinse and repeat until the writers get bored of it and stop casting out any hooks to begin with, and you’re just left with bugs and stick figures gawking at each other, occasionally interjected by a narrator gushing long-windedly about insects, lightning, the stages of suffocation and so forth. Honestly, these science lessons to pad out the episode or try to make some one-time bug transformation ability seem meaningful were the closest things to interesting material in the entire show.
So, without any notable plot progression the show is left to leverage another strength, like a sharp script or a solid cast of characters. To be honest, the latter quality is the one single area where Terra Formars succeeds most.
Succeeds at what? Being entirely incompetent on every level!
The majority of the cast have NO defining personality. They barely qualify as one-dimensional. You could have any two of them swap places and nothing of note would change. Several of them get some lengthy, drawn-out “sad backstories”, but evidently the show forgot to make the backstories even remotely define the character, explain their personality or tie meaningfully into current events, so you’re still left with non-characters with either one or no defining personality traits!
The protagonist is driven by the loss of a loved one to fight off the roaches and gather the virus samples, which is an acceptable motivation, but like most things in the show, NOTHING comes out of this - it’s just explaining why this caricature is on the mission and leaving it at that! There’s NOTHING else that defines him. He’s so bland and unremarkable that in any other show he would feel like a one-off side character, but there’s no competition here.
There’s also a woman who’s a jerk to her lover! What a complex character! And another was a famous boxer and - whoa, look! His bug transformation involves punching things! LOOK, IT WAS RELEVANT! What a miracle. Too bad that’s about all we know. These are some of the show's "better" attempts at making a character. With most, you’d be lucky to remember any of their names.
These aren’t characters; they’re just cutouts made from tree bark! And no matter how gratuitously violent the show tries to make some of their deaths, I don’t care, because why would I? It’s just tree bark!
Even the dialogue fails to add any flavour to them. In fact, it’s all quite dull. Its serves only to either blurt out exposition, fill time in a scene, or occasionally force in some awful comic relief. Are you tired of boob or perversion jokes? Well, these are just about the least-creative, most lifeless perversion jokes I’ve ever seen, or even comedy as a whole that isn’t set in a high school club room. Not to mention that in a supposedly serious story of survival, this forced style of humour comes across as out-of-place.
Without anything of interest in the dialogue, characters, their backstories, and no plot threads that go anywhere, all of the above just comes off like awful filler in practice. Yes, the plot and characters themselves are on the level of bad filler, dragging out the show, going nowhere, lacking direction, and existing only to waste the viewer’s time between any semblance of action. For a show whose first selling point was over-the-top violence, it seems intent on diluting it as much as possible, and this problem only gets progressively worse as the show goes on. Frankly, the pacing of everything after the first third is unacceptable, and what was already at best mildly ironically amusing becomes a downright agonizing viewing experience as episode after episode goes by without an interesting moment in sight.
Unfortunately, the production also tends to fall short, so these moments of “action” that should be something to look forward to are more like drops of dirty water in a desert. But I was so dehydrated that I was willing to take anything. I cheered out loud when, after several episodes of NOTHING, there was a brief sort-of-edgy scene with some character whose name I’ve all but erased from my memory. Then it was straight back to the desert trek.
But before I veer off-course, let’s talk about the action. It’s abysmal.
Whatever definition you may have for “choreography”, it’s near-nonexistent here. Your typical “action” scene might have 10 seconds of something even within reach of being called “dynamism” (usually it’s just the "death and carnage" scenes, which, granted, tend to be well-animated when they actually happen). The rest consists of some disappointingly sluggish direct face-offs between a human and an abnormally non-intimidating (just goofy) giant CGI cockroach. Remember that boxing character? Well, let’s just say I wouldn’t buy tickets to watch him fight these roaches. The rest is a combination of more bland dialogue pretending to be discussions of strategy, some science lessons from Mr. Narrator, shounen-style filler monologues, lengthy scenes of everyone just sitting around crying or gawking (as the roaches stand around doing nothing), or frustrating interjections from yet another woe-was-me backstory to waste another two-thirds of an episode on.
And the production weaknesses don’t end there. Visually, there’s the obvious issue with the armies of CGI body-builder roaches being of poor quality. Yet somehow even when half of them are off-putting CGI, their designs just don’t look frightening enough to feel like a threat (oh, wait, that would require some decent characters to be threatened by them in the first place). Honestly, the awkward human character designs manage to be more uncanny than the dumb, goofy-looking muscle-roaches could ever hope to be. When combined with bland colour and background design, static direction, a repetitive aesthetic and unremarkable animation, there’s little left to carry the show visually.
The audio doesn’t fare any better. Aside from a passable opening, the actual soundtrack of the series is pretty poor. Not one song is either worth listening to on its own or effective in the context of the scene. At best, they add nothing, and at worst, they’re actively ill-fitting, not to mention the repetition of the few (memorable is too much credit) “recognizable” ones just serves to make the increasingly soul-numbing viewing experience even more bland. Also, the sound design is atrocious at times, with some sounds quite literally clipping whatever audio channel it was recorded on. I thought it was my headphones, but nope, it was just an oversight that the most inexperienced hobbyist sound editor could recognize and fix in seconds. Production is more complicated than that, of course, but it seems there was some "production hell" going on behind the scenes and/or a rushed schedule failing to warrant the time or money to fix all such mistakes.
With this lack of even a serviceable level of production, and with so little in the way of substance or entertainment value combined with increasingly awful pacing, Terrible Formars is a landfill's worth of garbage in almost every conceivable way. The only thing it has to define itself is a few comical death scenes with brief spikes in animation quality, but the show couldn’t even commit to that one-trick gimmick as a selling point. While there are plenty of technically “worse” pieces of media out there, those were at least memorable horror shows. The only memorable thing about this is how little it even seems to care about anything it does, and if the show doesn’t care, it's hard to care as a general viewer. It feels like an ill-informed product, and a failed one on every level.
Let me be clear that I hold no resentment to the creators of this, nor do I think this show "owes" me anything - I myself chose to sit through it on a dare after all. But I'm going to call it like it is, and with that disclaimer made, Terrible Formars is the worst kind of bad anime. There may be other more shockingly incompetent shows out there, but the experience of watching this is awful. It’s not an ironically enjoyable “so-bad-it’s-good” series, not intriguingly or bafflingly insane or stupid, not uniquely or memorably inept, lacks value as a learning experience, and isn’t even insulting or offensively terrible; at least that would be SOMETHING! This is nothing. It’s empty; pointless; a creative void in animated form. It’s atrociously-executed and amateurly-produced across the board; utterly devoid of substance, integrity, plot, proper characterization, heart, effort, or literally anything worth caring about. Even the over-the-top deaths wear off fast. I can only recommend this to masochists. Everyone else, AVOID!
CENSOR CENSOR CENSOR!!!!!! Terra Formars aired in 2014 and most of the brutal inhumane scenes were censored.. but Bro do you even know what day it is? It's 2015 and all the scenes are now uncensored *Mind blown*
I can honestly say the uncensored version is a totally different Anime. Example? Sure. They don't play Basketball anymore on Mars. :)
Why did I rate Terra Formars so high?
- Fast paced and captivating plot twists! (None stop action)
- LOADS OF FIGHTING! (I say 70%)
- LOADS of gore and decapitation! (A MUST have in a *Horror* apocalyptic genre, I hate it when an Anime has a
Horror genre tag and I get absolutely no gore at all)
- LOADS of deaths (Not really a spoiler since every apocalyptic genre has a huge death rate)
- Bug ability plot mechanics. (Informative information about their abilities *Insectopedia* You never get to see any of *bug mechanics* in Anime so this is a first for me and most of you guys too. You know what I mean by *Bug ability plot mechanics* when you watch it)
Don't get fooled because my MAL buddy said so! Don't get fooled because its rated 7.07 on MAL! People just follow the "score hype train' and always listen to the fool. Please don't do that!You need to watch it for yourself first and not listen to the lowed scored elitist members who rated this Anime below 5! Ok sorry enough of the rambling.
Overall, If you like action packed gore suspenseful science fiction action where no one, not even the main characters is safe, and you enjoy a sprinkling of trivial knowledge throughout the series, this is the perfect Anime! AND If you don't like seeing insects getting REKT because your a nature boy/grill then please put this Anime on your drop list. Thanks. :)
Terra Formars was one of the series that received a lot of conflicting opinions during the fall 2014 season. Some loved it for the Linkin Park grimdark edginess while a majority of people hated on it purely due to the censorship. But let's face it, censorship is not a valid reason to give this series a one out of ten. If anything, there are much bigger problems than a giant black circle in the middle of the screen when it comes to this show.
Terra Formars is one of those series where it could have possibly been decent. You start watching this show and the amazing
hot blooded opening music comes on and you get all pumped up. Then as you go through it you just wonder to yourself if time was better spent studying for that final instead. The experience was akin to being teased by a really hot girl but suddenly experiencing erectile dysfunction when she tells you she has syphilis halfway through the makeout session. The premise was pretty interesting and I really liked the idea of how the tables have turned and the bug overlords are now hunting down the humans. You shouldn't expect anything more from the story other than to set up action. That's perfectly fine because that's what this show is meant to be. Unfortunately, it's those small details that really pisses you off and drove this show straight into the dumpster. The biggest offender of this is the narration. I'm an advocate of showing and not telling because it does not ruin the immersion experience. In this show however, you constantly have this out of place infodump either in the middle of action scenes or just before a big reveal and it completely destroys the atmosphere. Not only that, it treats the viewers as if they are 75 IQ retards just because the studio is too lazy to incorporate these information through character interactions.
Character designs is one of the things that went well for this show. Unfortunately the same cannot really be said of a lot of the characters themselves. Personally I think the main problem is that 13 episodes is not nearly enough to develop such a large cast. While dynamics between the main characters were done decently, you just can't give a damn about the rest of the cast. And when they get killed off it seemed like they are randomly killed just for the sake of being a tear jerker or to induce shock through all the gore because you do not feel a connection to them.
Speaking of shock and gore, oh boy, we now come to the censorship. Remember when you thought Tokyo Ghoul was pretty heavily censored? Well that was pretty tame compared to this. Sometimes the screens would just be half black and other times they would have random black circles. To speak the truth, I actually loved the censored version because I just find it absolutely hilarious and it also spawned lots of dank memes with that one particular head grab scene.
At the end of the day you should treat this show like one of those B movies from the 1950s about vampire Nazi sunflowers from Venus or some shit like that. Watch the censored version and enjoy it while making fun of the hilarious expressions of the cockroaches, the absurd fights and some QUALITY animation with your friends.
Would you like to hear a joke?
That's the whole joke.
Terra formars follows the expedition of strong humans to mars, who have the task of killing and capturing evolved fighting cockroaches that were used to make Mars more inhabitable for humans. The objective is to find a cure for a disease that came from Mars, which could lead to the deaths of many people on earth.
Terra formars is very much a sci fi, horror anime. The shows main message is trying to look at the perspective of "If humans were the pests" instead of cockroaches. It does this by looking at the themes of evolution and
how humans could lag behind in terms of further development in the future, leading to extinction. Another theme is medical advancement as a way of combatting the evolved cockroaches, this involves taking the characteristics of certain organisms and fusing them with humans to give great fighting abilities. The show also highlights the characters personal reasons for joining the expedition, and their goals for the end of mission too. In terms of atmosphere, there is tension throughout due to the many fights constantly going on, leading there pace being similar throughout. Fighting is very much prevalent with many characters and cockroaches alike being killed, showing that no one is safe. Furthermore, the show looks deeper at how the characteristics of the organisms enable humans and cockroaches to fight.
However, in terms of story, there is little to be desired. The shows pacing was steady due to the fact that 8 of the 13 episodes contained none stop fighting. This in turn lead to a lack of suspense as there was no plot development for nearly all of the whole show. It's over focus on new abilities and 'epic' fights lead to a rushed ending, which, in turn, reverted back to focusing on the epic fighting rather than focusing on other topics such as how the cockroaches managed to evolve. Unfortunately, the excessive focus on humans and cockroaches dying lead to the story being one dimensional. This was upsetting, as the introduction to the show had good pacing and took more of a holistic approach in explaining the plot, character interaction and fighting. Lastly, it's choice of how episodes were ordered was very questionable, as the pacing suffered severely with the focusing on developing 2 or 3 characters for a few episodes. This in turn lead to further plot development troubles.
In terms of the animation, the picture quality, overall fluidity of fight scenes and scenery as a whole was to a high standard, as expected from a 2014 anime. The character models were quiet varied, offering more distinction between the different types of organism characteristics the humans had. Overall, it was a pleasure on the eyes.
However, the models of the cockroaches do look very stereotypical of black tribal warriors, which could be offensive.
There is a huge cast of characters involved in Terra Formars, many involved characters with powers and none combatants. It mainly focuses on the characters with super powers, which a narrator explains which organism the abilities have been taken from. Character development is prevalent with some, but not all due to the size of the cast.
However, the shows lack of remorse for characters makes it difficult to like, as many characters could end up dying. This makes it tough to find a "personal favorite". Also, the show seems to lack a solid main character, as there are so many characters important to the mission, so many that die and so many that are under developed, the lack of structure means it's hard to determine which is the main character. Although, some characters were developed to a good standard, and it did attempt to explain many characters opinions.
In terms of the music, both the opening and ending are more focused on rock music, which was fine but not entirely too my liking. It's OST was very pleasurable, highlighting and amplifying tension in battle, as well as more orchestral music for character infractions, which I enjoyed.
In all, Terra Formats fundamental errors in it's writing and in basic story telling lead to the show looking more like Fight club than a sci fi horror.
I can honestly say this review is completely unbiased, as I watched the show with no idea whatsoever of its reception. I marathoned it all in one night and decided to read some reviews atferward to see if anyone shared my thoughts about it.
Let's just say they did, but the negative aspects were amplified hundredfold.
First of all, the story. I'm going to be honest and say the idea seemed a bit weird, if not stupid, but I decided to give it the benefit of doubt. Giant humanoid cockroaches commanded by another pretty much immortal giant cockroach? A martian virus? A possibly alien
civilization wanting to destroy the earth using muscular bugs? Okay.
I gave it a six simply because of the concept. It is not original by any means, but it's got a couple unique aspects. And hell, it was entertaining.
The art wasn't bad at all. Those cockroaches are easily the creepiest things I've ever seen in anime, and I've seen plenty. I kind of find it odd that Mars could seem to alike Earth, even with the moss growing around, but I'll call it artistic license. I liked the characters' designs and the slightly more realistic way in which they were drawn, and I even found some of the characters to be handsome in an unconventional way. I gave it an eight.
The OSTs weren't the best, but they were fitting enough. The wailing woman in the sad moments seems to be a must in these sorts of shows. I did like both the OP and ED. A seven seems a bit too kind, but there were a cuuple OSTs that did get me pumped up in moments of tension.
Now, the characters.
This show has one of my favorite male characters in anime, Adolf. It's frustrating how little screentime he got as he's easily the most developed and had so much more potential. I won't say anything else, cuz spoilers.
I wasn't really fond of anyone else, I must admit. They just had too little screentime and many backstories seemed very soap-operaish. Perhaps if they had givevn more focus on the character their deaths could've had a much bigger impact, sans a certain character. But I have to admit, though, that me being the softie I am did suffer every time someone died, but seeing the other reviews that's probably just me.
The only other character for whom I really cared was Michelle, who I hink also had great time for potential. And well, she's really badass.
Because of the potential each character had, and because of Adolf, I'll be extremely generous and give this area a nine.
If one thing's for sure, I was hooked. Even though most of the tension consisted of cheap shock value and I'm pretty sure they're all going to die at ome point, I found myself on the edge of my seat several times (particularly on the parts revolving around Adolf). The sort certainly had the element of tension, and fot that I'll five it a seven.
It wasn't as bad as some people put it to be, in my opinion. It just suffers from not being executed well enough. For me, its major flaw was the lack of development, the pace, that sort of stuff. The themes were good,a nd even if it was not directly put, a certain one about how death is in te end futile got me thinking a lot, and I love animes that get that reaction from me.
Especially... well. SPOILERS! When Adolf died. He tried dying at first, but ultimately realized his he did value his comrades and proetected them until the end. And the fact the cockroach leader survived a lightning bolt falling directly on top of him was kind of an asspull if you ask me. The worst part is, he died without saving anyone. But he did die among comrades, so I guess that kind of shows that in the end, death is not entirely meaningless.
I did hate his whore of a wife, though.
Would I recommend it? Yes, but only to a certain public. One that could see a show for what it is despite its flaws.
No good can come from putting “Mars” in your title.
“Terra Formars” is an adaption of the seinen manga by Sasugu Yu and Kenichi Tachibana by the same name. Serialized in the same magazine as Tokyo Ghoul, (Young Jump, or Shonen Jump for big boys) “Terra Formars” is a sci-fi/action horror.
Oh, you were expecting more of an explanation? But, there really isn’t anything else to say. I might have been able to crack a joke, but the anime is a joke enough already for me to not have to. I’m just going to stop wasting your time here;
tl;dr: this show sucks
(Yes, I did
watch it uncensored)
Many years prior to the story, humanity sent cockroaches and various mosses to Mars in hopes of terra-forming the surface. (making it a suitable environment for earthly life.) It worked, too. But recently, a disease has broken out on Earth, and a handful of “specialists” from all over the globe are sent to Mars in hopes for finding a cure. But on said planet are hordes of the cockroaches, which have evolved to the point of being almost human. Naturally, the series is advertised as a “hyper-violence” action series that’s filled with more blood than narrative substance.
But instead of being a mindless, action-filled gore-fest, it’s character backstories and apparent mystery sub-plot actually means it demands a certain amount of respect as a story. So that’s how I’m going to treat it; like an actual story. (You reap what you sow, Sasugu!)
So we start out with a concept that the anime is clearly supposed to be conveying; you know how you just step on a bug you see, and don’t even give it a second thought? Well what if the bug… is now stepping on you? I’ll admit this is definitely a clever setup for some good ideas, except for the fact that the anime does literally NOTHING with it. Instead of intertwining this could-be moral question and primal fear into the “narrative,” (if I could even call it that) it’s forgotten in favor of underwhelming mystery and government conspiracies that dilute what the series is trying to be in the first place.
Anyway, random people, if they so desire, are given the opportunity to get a surgery; one where combined with an injected medicine, (or it can be snuffed and eaten, you name it) can turn them into hybrids, where they get the abilities of a specific animal or insect. For what its worth, the anime is filled with informative narration about these hybrids that sheds some light onto the actual traits of their respective creature’s capabilities, but that’s where any ounce of this idea being inventive stops, because,
1. Why are they operating on and sending random, everyday people to Mars instead of combat-trained professionals; or at least certified Astronauts? There are a few sure, but most of the people onboard fall into the “average joe” category.
Like many anime, the reason as to why is alluded to, but we never fully learn because it just… ends. It’s another inconclusive story, with a “go read the manga ending.” …yay.
These “specialists” arrive on mars to inevitably battle the cockroaches, which have evolved into lightning fast, aggressive, upright beings reminiscent of Homo Erectus, down to the point of carrying a club. But despite being the threatening monsters they are, they’re portrayal is horribly inconsistent. They’re supposed to be lightning fast, but often times just stand there when they’re being attacked. They even turn around to run away and aren’t as fast as they’re made out to be. They can break through a space vessel; but can’t escape a net? I can’t even give that a pass because, even though the nets in the series are designed to withstand three times the strength of a single cockroach, why can’t the ships? They’re goddamn space ships!
And due to the amount of wandering still shots, tremendously overdone exposition, and backstory that does nothing but interrupt the “action.” The pace of the anime is comparable to an old dog taking a shit. What I mean is that its
This makes the whole of 13 episodes feel twice as long, all while constantly loosing focus; jumping to character backstories sporadically, (so much so that they usually take up half or more of the episode) and just plain feels like procrastination, as there doesn’t seem to be much to work with. But oh, who gives a shit, the whole reason one would want to watch this is for the insane hyper violence, right?
Except… the action is minimal, and honestly straight up boring. The choreography is all over the place, ranging from “its alright, they’re kicking stuff” to “he’s not even moving.” They take a few whacks and stand around and think to themselves a little more, and for what? The pacing literally creates plot holes! Why are the cockroaches standing with them and not attacking? They seem to have some sort of order; but that’s not explored either!
This story has way too many problems, and not enough ground to stand on. At least I can say that… it tried.
---Plot Score: -Terrible-
This will undoubtedly be the most difficult portion of the review for me, because I don’t remember any of the characters. No one stood out.
Despite its dependence on character backdrops, they’re all so stagnant as human beings that you just don’t care. A lot of the backstories involve something stereotypical like a childhood friend getting sick, themselves being experimented on, or…
…Their retina detaching. That’s a thing? Holy shit, now that’s scarier than any cockroach man!
Either way, There’s not really a main character either. You could argue it’s the first introduced character, Hizamaru Araki, but he really only gets ignored from then on in favor of having a different character get the spotlight in every episode. But they’re past is never used to further build them up as people, in fact, its never utilized at all. They get it, and then it cuts to them battling a cockroach where they will either come out unscathed and continue to be ignored, or just straight up die. Character development? Let’s just give them a sob-story life! Where should we drop it? Eh, in the middle of an important battle is fine! Characterization? Who needs it, lets just kill em’ off!
Oh, so its one of those anime. Characters die. They get elaboration, and die, making me question the purpose of bringing up their lives in the first place.
I’d like to say that the cast isn’t full of duds, and that there is maybe one or two favorable characters, but there really isn’t. Even if they don’t die, they’re screen time is hammered into the dirt because the cast is so large.
At least it tried…
---Characters Score: -Terrible-
This animation, done by…
Wait, what the hell?
Warner Bros licensed this? Oh great, now America is taking over anime… yippee…
Anyway, the animation, (which I believe to have been done by LIDENFILMS though I could be wrong) is a mixed bag of sorts. The frames usually look fantastic, with high detailing in the lakes and mountainous terrain of terra-formed Mars, as well as things like beautifully drawn irises (that dilate; done well too) and the heart-stopping, visceral scenes of endless bloodshed and high-intensity gore. (In fact, I originally thought this was a Madhouse production)
But like I said, the actual amount of lingering stills and breaks between the action make the series feel slow as hell, and that drops the quality of the animation because there’s no effort involved. To add insult to injury; there are hordes and hordes of CG cockroaches. Identical, 3D rendered, cockroaches. Every insect, and every vehicle in this series is done with CG. I’m getting so sick of it. It’s common I know, but just so utterly lazy.
Other than that it looks fine, just above average I’d say.
---Animation Score: -Substantial-
The soundtrack is rather unimpressive, (surprise surprise) but the opening “AMAZING BREAK” by TERRASPEX was actually pretty cool, it was an adrenaline-rush inducing metal/rock piece that I actually feel fit the overall tone the show was going for quite nicely, though the ending, “Lightning” by the same artist, wasn’t quite as memorable.
And everything else is generic, beat em’ up music, (with electric guitars and hard rock rhythms) nothing really stands out that much.
And I’ll just say that the cockroach’s battle cries made me laugh so hard; I don’t really know how to describe it either, they just sort of happen out of the blue sometimes and instead of making them menacing, it makes them even more hilarious that they already are.
---Sound Score: -Substantial-
- fun animal facts?
- A few interesting concepts, like the form changing surgery
- VERY heavy gore and dismemberment
- Unconcluded. Because of this though, there’s always room for improvement! Right?
- Pacing is slower than a sloth; prolonging the actual experience
- Ripe with unexplored plot threads and plot-holes aplenty
- Absolutely boring, undeveloped characters that will just die within an episode or two, and when they don’t their screen time is abandoned
- Completely misplaced character backstories that take entirely too long, interrupting story flow, and literally do NOTHING in the way of development or characterization
- Underwhelming fights, nowhere near as much action as is advertised
- Vastly inconsistent portrayals of the enemies’ abilities
- The whole thing doesn’t make much sense anyway, sub-plot’s twists are not explored, and in the end it’s just straight up boring
Terra Formars takes itself way too seriously.
One has to ask themselves; what is there to be entertained by in this series? There’s some violence for sure, but hyper-violence has been made much more fun in other series, (Hellsing Ultimate, for one) because this time it isn’t really even prominent. I don’t patronize people, if you liked this, that’s totally fine. But I don’t see how.
This is the show that’s been reduced to both a racist meme and a poke at Japan’s horrible censorship. In my honest opinion, it deserves no more. If you either want something to make fun of, or if you want some sleep medication, there’s this that’s right in front of you.
A downright hilariously earned 2/10 for this one. Well done.
Well, when I began to see Terra formars, I thought it would be better for criticism and comments that I heard about the anime, but he did not answer my espectations.The anime is not bad, it until it is cool to watch and have good scenes action but that's it, the characters are flat (with exception of Adolf) and some things make the anime a little ridiculous, like the fact of being cheap strange and resemble humans, which makes no sense, and human take a drug and become half animals, is also another thing I found strange.
The history of anime is very good, and he
does not follow the typical cliches to make the villain always go wrong and the hero always win, which is well shown along the anime. Overall Terra formars has me note 6, if you like anime action and sci-fi, surely Terra formars will at least please you, otherwise I would not recommend it highly.
Terra Formas is actually really good. It's good in the sense that you get exactly what you pay for. Genetically modified people with animal-based powers fight huge mutant cockroaches on Mars. Hell yeah? Over the top concepts that just don't give a damn are the best. The story is a basic one: Go up there and find a cure for some Mars disease. Badass guys and gals kicking some space insect butt. Terra Formars does not pretend to be "deep" and "philosophical" (which is the norm nowadys I guess). This would have been the greatest thing I ever saw if I was 15 years younger,
and I'm still a little boy on the inside who likes a good brawl. The show won't most likely win any awards, but I can at least hope for a second season. The art and opening are good tho.
The only problems Terra Formars has is the slow pacing and horrible INITIAL censorship in the first 3 episodes. There are uncensored episodes now.
Terra Formars had the potential to revive the Sci-Fi/Horror genre, but indefinitely fell short of this...
This is a perilous and action-packed journey into uncharted land, Inhabited by a particularly formidable alien race. An apocalyptic epidemic-like fate looms over the shoulders of humanity, and metaphorical titans are sure to fall. It is an unpredictable, and fast-paced sci-fi/horror series of epic proportions. And whilst touching on the subjects of both sentience, and betrayal, I cannot deny that it's certainly a story with substance.
A slightly-cliche, though appropriate, isolated-feeling, and otherworldly Martian landscape sets the stage for this 13 episode series. Invading both the sci-fi and
horror realms with an integration of strong violence, into an alien world: It shouldn't come as a shock that its audience will need to be appreciative of unending action sequences. As for the chronological
progression, this is in fact quite a fitting description. With the concept of scale being used often to emphasize severity and intensify the viewers' perception of the events here... It bodes well that the interplanetary premise: a scientifically accurate and vast wasteland, really helps to invoke curiosity. We are after all made both curious, and afraid of the unknown. This is of course decent substance to make even the most far-fetched of concepts seem real, and immersive.
~ Story and Character development ~
If you were to ask me "What's behind this show?", then I would relay: "a boundless "red planet" premise, to stage an interspecies war". The underlying problem with this (as I will elaborate), is that it's simply too extensive and substantial for 13 episode production to make full use of. It's malnourished, and full of gaping holes particularly in the character department - that will likely throw many off course.
Besides having a story that wouldn't ever necessarily "run dry" from a content-observant perspective... Everything operates on a large scale with Terra Formars: So expect to see chains of events, all of which have some impact, and make some kind of dent in the overriding plot. Debatably devoid of intricacies: this anime can't afford to expend time on small, and technically irrelevant, but highly praise-able quirks/details that can be used to further the familiar sense of immersion... giving the anime a one-of-a-kind presence. With Terra Formars on the other hand, we only got the barebones of the story... again... time is of the essence.
It falls into a trap that many action-based adventures have been known to in the past... The story is one-dimensional. Everything that goes on during 312 minutes of running time, does so in what I like to call: an immediate-scope. What this entails, is that everything happens on a whim. There's little in the way of "establishment" or goals beyond the first 2 or 3 episodes, and this makes things seem too spontaneous. Almost, "done without thought", which is ironic because I'm sure the manga was well thought out, and would clear all of this up. As for this anime: it becomes tiring how EVERYTHING has to be relevant to the same overriding plotline, and so not enough happens besides dealing with Terra Formars, to add that other "dimension".
Now what I will give it, is unpredictability. The show has an effectively unending suspense that compliments the event-based story, and really brings out this sense of struggle that reminds you "this is a journey fraught with dire consequences". Violence plus unpredictability equals death, so expect the unexpected! The show itself really is a thrill ride, and if you were to watch it rather casually or on a whim: then its cinematic qualities would nevertheless shine through and keep you engaged for the most part. Now there's a really distinct sense of camaraderie and mutual respect for one-another in Terra Formars. Combined with the evident struggle of humanity against the alien race, and it becomes a pretty interesting story of survival in spite of its blatant flaws.
The word "interesting" is used rather loosely nowadays, and it's regrettably not the term I would use to describe this story's cast of characters. The show blatantly tries to build upon them, with long and almost unconsented flashbacks that kill the show's pacing, and leave little room for more substantial events. As an anime, Terra Formars tries so hard to meet every objective, but doesn't admit to its identity as an action-oriented story, and instead ends up sub-par in the areas where it counts.
It tries to forge some sort of emotional connection between the viewers and cast, but there are simply too many actively involved personalities to make extensive character development even an option. With the elongated flashbacks that let us in on various character backgrounds, if you're not still angry that a fight was just called off to make way for a blast-from-the-past, then you can start to appreciate some of our protagonists. But not for long. There's just so much always going on, and too many time constraints to adhere to with this anime: It means that even if we're going to be "investing" into a character, it doesn't make up for the fact that a fair number of faces are still strangers by the last episode.
~ Audiovisuals ~
Regarding the score: It's simple, and a tad "rinse and reuse", but effective. Terra Formars treats us to a highly appropriate and intense-sounding OP and ED which pertains to the anime's "power" in being such a thriller. It compliments the themes well.
Regarding animation, we've got a strange mix to contend with. For the most part we get a rather drab colour palette which is both appropriate for the barren landscaping, and the dark nature of the show. The animation is generally of a considerable quality: with fine detail shining through, and an emphasis on lighting physics which adds to that sense of realism and immersion. Whereas some of the animation is frighteningly fluid, other parts are less impressive. Overall: I won't deny that it's a feast for the eyes for the most part.
~ Final thoughts ~
The vast story of Terra Formars was doomed as soon as it was given just 13 episodes to develop everything. But it did evidently put some effort into it: with a strong start that set the scene well, with unfortunately trails off into mindless combat and unexplained character relations. With the character aspect being a hindrance because too many will remain almost like strangers. Tough credit where credit is due: It is a visually pleasing and unpredictable thrill-ride, with some charm to it.
There's too much "manufactured" feeling of sentiment infused into this short series, and so as far as "long term seriousness" goes, it's not worth the watch. It's strength is in its immediate-scope presentation, chock full of action, and it would honestly be naïve to watch Terra Formars for anything besides a cinematic "shock-value" thriller set of qualities.
When i first saw this anime , my first thought was "this is so plain and generic.. I'm sure its going to suck". But i couldn't bring myself to hate this anime. I can't say it was good, but it was not horrible. While the story is quite generic and unoriginal, the anime itself is not boring. I'd even say there where a part or two that i actually enjoyed. I still can't say it is good by any means, but its rather easy to watch. If you want to kill some time, I'd say this anime may help you with that task. Otherwise..
I wouldn't recommend it too much.
I will give Terra Formars credit for its setting. It is just unique enough to make you interested in its premise. The story is just there as a backdrop, an enabler for the gory action if you will. It mentions some political intrigue in passing, setting itself up for potential twists, but never bothers going deeper into it. It gives the plot some flavor, but requires a second season to deliver on it.
The sound did its job for me, the music and voice-acting in particular sticking out as good. The art however does need to be addressed. The design of the cockroaches is too campy
to be scary, which is why I would have preferred had they kept them in the dark, rather than the stale CGI army we got instead. The cockroaches also kinda look like racist caricatures of black tribesmen, which I hope I'm not alone in noticing. The rest of the character-designs however gives the viewer plenty of variety to enjoy. For those who think this is nothing but graphic violence I would also argue that the action-scenes knows how to play up the sensation of characters flying at high speeds and performing great feats of strength.
Where Terra Formars does show that it has bite and not just bark, is in its characters. At the start, the characters are too thin to really work when they are fighting as a team, and I would go as far as call the writing incompetent during the first half. But once the latter half of the show comes in it slows down greatly, fleshing out the characters in ways that was a welcome surprise. Had the show been more focused on the characters' personal stories early on, I think this show would have been far more hit than miss.
Overall I give Terra Formars a 5 for being an enjoyable show to fans, but very uneven with just as much good as bad things in it.
The story was quite compressed since it only got 13ep. It's a bit like Jojo, some people will tolerate the unique feeling around the series, and cherish it/ love it. And ofc there are people who will hate it, either it is because of the slow pace, the fragmented flashbacks or the characters... I personally enjoyed it, and i hope people would give it a try. (If you want to watch a gory/ action anime and doesn't get sick of insects).