It’s not very often that an anime comes out that has its main protagonist be the villain and does it so well. Overlord is a popular show that explores this idea and Youjo Senki would be a highly recommended for those who enjoy certain aspects of it. It follows Tanya Degurechaff, a Japanese salaryman reincarnated into a female child soldier, in a reality where magic coexists alongside an alternate timeline of World War One. The twist is that she fights for Germanian Empire and behaves far differently than a stereotypical heroine.
Youjo Senki is defined by the main female lead
of Tanya as she ascends the ranks of the Imperial Army though bloodshed and maneuvering within its bureaucracy. What makes her character and story so interesting is that she provides a fascinating case study on villainy. Far from the cliche ambitions of world domination, fame or riches, her ultimate objective is to live out a comfortable life by following the rules to an dogmatic degree and being competent. It is a mundane goal, but it does ground her character in becoming relatable.
Being a sociopathic salaryman in her former life, Tanya runs afoul of God due to her lack of empathy and atheism, which then causes her to be reborn into a grim world in order to unlock her faith in a higher power. The crux of the series is for Tanya to physically survive the ever expanding conflict that will become the First World War in this alternate timeline challenge for Tanya become twofold as she is to survive in this new world while not succumbing to the spiritual whims of God’s conversion efforts.
However, Tanya does have access to quite a bit of power in the form of retaining full knowledge of her previous life, extremely high magical potential, ruthless work ethic and state of the art equipment. Despite ending up in the body of a ten year old blonde girl, there is very little pandering to when it comes to her loli physicality, and those who underestimate her quickly find themselves outclassed and outmaneuvered. Tanya is completely ruthless and brutal when it comes to waging warfare as her tactics are to swiftly end the fight with clever tactics and overwhelming firepower. Off the battlefield and with the knowledge of World War One, she can sweet talk her way to the command staff with groundbreaking military doctrine and instill a sense of reverence in her troops.
Indeed, the greatest downfall to her is the incompatibility of her final goals, ideology and actions within the military environment resulting in the various schemes that she cooks up to ensure a comfortable position ends up with the opposite effect. Her adherence to rules, regulations and orders does not offer any alternate route in spite of Tanya’s being the villain in her own story. While the civilian business world can be far more accommodating to the desires of talented individuals, the military values competency by rewarding those specific individuals like Tanya, with greater responsibility. There was no way that the Imperial Army was letting a brilliant tactician and ace mage with unmatched strength or leadership ability, be sidelined in the greatest war to end all war. As smart and cunning as Tanya is, for her to not realize that simple face seems like an oversight to me.
The other characters of the show don’t even come close to holding a candle to the flamethrower that is Tanya, but that doesn’t mean that they are poorly designed or constructed. Her subordinate, Viktoriya Serebryakova, a female conscripted into the German Empire Army, acts as the foil to Tanya’s cold efficiency and utilitarian worldview. With nationalistic ideals, a strong sense of duty, concerns about her comrades and a belief in a higher power, she is far more akin to your standard anime female heroine. It is this juxtaposition of their attitudes that makes their interactions so peculiar as Viktoriya is slowly smitten by her superior officer.
Finally, there is Being X himself, a singular god-like entity as opposed to the myriad of deities in the source material. Studio Nut took liberties with the light novel and made him a far more sinister character by setting up Tanya in situations where she has no choice but to praise his name in exchange for the usage of the very powerful Type-95 magical orb. Appearing through proxies at certains encounter, his involvement in the plot goes to the point of altering the source material and cumlnate in an explosive climax which gives Tanya a real challenge and face to fight against.
From the limited information available, Youjo Senki is the first main animation production from Studio Nut, a newfound company is made up of former Studio Madhouse employees. There is obviously some talent behind this anime production as the action sequences looks quite good and convey a sense of ferociousness as Tanya effortlessly butchers her way through any and all enemies standing between her and a peaceful life. The backgrounds also looks great with the landscape and skybox being highly detailed while having this drab color palette that fits Youjo Senki’s interpretation of World War One’s bleak tone. My only real complaint is the use of some rather dodgy CGI that clashes against the 2D’s frame rate and fidelity. Others may take up issue with the the character design differences between the source material and the anime as Tanya and Viktoriya looks leagues apart when compared to their Soujo-like appearance in the manga and light novel. Personally, I think that sociopathic nature of Tanya and the wide-eyed look of the optimistic and duty-bound Viktoriya meshes well with their respective trollish and dopey animated appearances.
Youjo Senki is a textbook case on exactly how anime adaptions should done by having the strong source material as its base, and layering it with amazing animations, an epic soundtrack and a fitting bleak tone. The World War One setting is worth the admission alone as portrayal of the various weapons and military doctrine is spot on. Tanya, being one of the most understandable psychopathic loli that anime has to offer, only adds to its uniqueness and enjoyment.
My first encounter with the anime "The Saga of Tanya the Not Particularly Evil" intrigued me greatly. I walked in on my roommate watching some anime with a little girl and, as per tradition, I casually called him a pedophile. But then something strange happened. Rather than the usual "ACKSHUALLY, she's a 500 year old demon," he said "ACKSHUALLY, she's a middle aged man." Now, I was horrified by this. I slapped him and began to shout. "Why?? Hasn't this trap shit gone on long enough??? It’s too far!“ I said. But he explained the plot to me, so I told him it sounded stupid.
"No,” he said “Actually, it's really good." And that is where our sad story begins. (It was not, dear readers, actually really good.)
An essential problem here is that the whole premise feels pointless. Some dude dies and God doesn’t like him so he turns him into a badass loli mage. Because that’s a punishment now. Why is it important that this girl used to be a man when we know basically nothing about her previous life? This reincarnation seems to give her knowledge that battle-hardened generals envy, but there's no reason why some salaryman who’s read a few wikipedia articles would be a genius at military strategy. And did he have to be some fedora tipper's wet dream? Libertarian, atheist……I guarantee this man dabbles in bestiality just based on this combination, and this makes him a really unsympathetic character. Couldn’t we have had an anime where a loli becomes Hitler, without this whole thing where it’s actually some reincarnated old dude? That sounds like a much more interesting character. As it is, they keep telling us she’s a monster or evil every episode, but she’s mostly just dull, which is why they have to keep telling us…..we would have never guessed if we were left to our own devices.
In any case, I care more about the actual plot than this weird backstory. Or I would, if the AU was not so vague and dull. One alternate option would have been to create a whole new universe, with only slight similarities to our own, but that would have required world building and work. Another would have been to have it take place in a universe more similar to our own, but the points at which the anime departs from history often seem to be more out of ignorance than creativity, suggesting that this choice was never really an option. As such, we’re stuck in this uncanny middle ground where the viewer knows next to nothing about the setting, despite how similar it is to his own world’s history. The lack of clarification on points of departure is jarring and it destroys immersion.
The ‘Characters' section must be put at 1/10, to represent that there is only one character. (And she’s not that good!) I can’t say I remember anyone else’s name, or anything about them. It seems as if the creators genuinely did not put any effort into creating unique, compelling, or creative characters. I don’t care about any of these people, or what happens to them. And every time I start to feel invested in Tanya I’m reminded she’s actually just some weird old dude, and the whole orphan backstory means nothing. Most character interactions are very shallow, and we don’t know anyone’s motivations other than the absolute basics. Where are the meaningful character interactions? Where is the development? It’s ridiculous and shallow.
The ED was probably the best part of every episode. Not only because it meant the episode was over, but because it was actually not too bad. No complaints there.
Overall, I thought most of this anime’s potential was squandered. It wasn’t an atrocity but I wouldn’t recommend it, nor do I plan to watch the next season. There wasn't really enough tension or depth to keep me going and it became difficult to watch towards the end.
Overall: Let's just call it a 4 or something
This anime, compressed into one long ass sentence: “An intelligent, asshole, soldier loli is actually a reincarnated, sociopathic, atheist, former salaryman, who occasionally gets forced by a stalker, god-like entity to pray to it in order for him-now-her to survive in a world-war setting and wreck his/her war enemies... with a magic gun.”
Youjo Senki was a pretty interesting show. It successfully presents an uncommon perspective in anime, where the main character is borderline villainous. I personally found it very entertaining and would recommend it to you.
TL;DR at the end
Tanya Degurachaff (the main character) starts off in our
universe as an atheist, sociopathic, efficiency-valuing salaryman with many personality disorders and complexes. Some normal everyday shit happens at work, but the guy that he just cold-heartedly fired at work that day overreacts and murders Tanya by pushing him onto the train tracks. A god-like entity claims to be God, has a philosophical discussion with him before he dies, Tanya names it "Being X" since he's a non-believer, and then he gets told that he this will be his last reincarnation cycle (basically because he’s a sociopathic atheist). He consequently gets sent to be reborn in a different, more war-torn world that contains magic and is reminiscent of the early 1900s in our world.
He-now-she is reborn as a girl and we become increasingly aware that she remembers her previous life as she reaches the age of nine. Now that she's a fully fledged nine-year-old, she chooses to join the military and rises through the military ranks in order to obtain enough achievements to live comfortably in the safety of the city. However, “Being X” maliciously interferes at very critical points in Tanya's life, and so she often ends up continuously fighting in life-threatening magical gun battles. The reason why being “Being X” interferes is basically in order to try to convert her evil, sociopathic, loli ass into a devout believer. However, instead of choosing to believe in God, Tanya angrily continues to reject the existence of God through ominous displays of smug insanity.
The story follows him-now-her as she rises through the army ranks and becomes an overpowered, super strict, crazy, monster-like commanding officer. The story also gives some interesting perspective on the human nature of war, and the geopolitical strategy that goes into it
- Will he-now-she ever get his-now-her happy ending?
- Who or what is "Being X?"
- How does Tanya, a sociopath, act in a military environment?
~Find out more by watching the show!~
The pacing was great; nothing felt like it was too slow or too fast, but some watchers were initially thrown off because the first episode since it started in the middle of a war scene. The purpose of it was to build interest in the series by showing that there was going to be tons of action, but they consequently chose to present Tanya’s backstory in the second episode.
The story itself is very unique, but it feels like the show is missing something to me. I think that it may be because there is no ambitious “goal(s)” that the main protagonist has, other than just defying “Being X” and trying to live comfortably in life. The story was also very interesting, having enough character development for all of the essential characters. Overall, I feel the story is worth an 8/10. I ranked it down mainly because it’s nearly void of profound or meaningful qualities, and also because the show wasn’t exactly “complex” or relatable in any way (except for perhaps the intelligence of the main character). I thought that the story was “very interesting”, but never once called it “great”.
Really, the only interesting characters in this anime were Tanya, Being X, and some random ass enemy-dad from the suburbs. However, to be honest, Tanya was really all this anime needed anyways. Tanya is interesting because she’s an excellent strategist that prioritizes logic and efficiency as a soldier, which allows her to often make more effective decisions than even the highest commanding strategy officers. She's also pretty overpowered and crazy, so she wrecks her enemies while having some of the craziest facial expressions that I've seen.
Additionally, Tanya’s thoughts and actions somewhat remind me of the main protagonists from Saiki Kusuo no Psi nan (10/10 best comedy) and Jinrui wa Shimashita (8/10 hidden gem). In these anime, the main character’s words/actions and internal commentary are often hilariously in opposition to each other, as they reluctantly conform to others’ expectations to achieve some sort of objective or conceal their true nature. This mainly presents itself when she must show respect for her superior officers, often becoming extremely enraged internally when things don’t go her way.
They only briefly built the personalities of the other characters that surround Tanya throughout the anime. The highest ranking officers showed up pretty often and got a decent amount of development, as did Tanya’s main assistant Viktoriya Ivanovna. Viktoriya Avnovna is a very kind and tender woman, who is unexpectedly dedicated to her job as a soldier. She's supposed to be a main character, but I don’t recall getting any of her background story. It must’ve either been very insignificant or they may have just never told her story.
The background art is objectively amazing--- actually, they are some of the best backgrounds that I have ever seen in the anime genre. Additionally, the animation and action are great, the dramatic angles are top quality, the facial expressions are very expressive, special effects are good enough, all 3DCG objects blend perfectly and are barely detectable--- overall the art is quite great in general. However, they REALLY fucked up the female characters' head designs from the manga. In fact, it’s so different, that I am literally at a loss for words.
The female characters look almost unrecognizably different when compared to their manga counterparts. Tanya and Viktoriya Ivanovna (actually, the women in general) were supposed to look like very beautiful characters/people. In the manga, she looked similar to how a beautiful shoujo anime’s main character would look (the ED art is the manga art, in case you were wondering). Comparing the two... left me at a loss for words because in the anime they looked like some weird ass toddlers with weird-looking eyes.
The men look perfectly fine. This slightly ticked me off because they spent all of this time and money drawing these hella top quality backgrounds, but they deliberately chose to fuck up both Tanya’s and Viktoriya Ivanovna’s character designs. The new design makes them both appear less attractive and more scary and evil in Tanya’s case, which may have been what the art director was going for. I don’t like it, but I wouldn’t have noticed if I didn’t check out the manga. Everything else is absolutely fantastic, so I feel compelled to give this category a 9/10.
Both the opening and ending were pretty unique, fun, intense, and catchy songs 9/10. The opening is an intense dark-sounding j-rock piece, while the ending is a bit more emotional, but still intense. Unfortunately, I feel that the background OSTs were pretty lackluster in general, but the main battle OST was pretty good. I think that they should have had a composer create a heavier, more fluid sounding main melody for the battles in order to convey the heaviness of fighting and taking a life, but it sounded pretty good and definitely got the job done. The remaining themes were relatively average instrumental background music.
I feel that Tanya's voice sounded a bit off. It definitely fit her evil personality and was pretty intimidating, but I think it would sound better if she had a more softer voice that maintains the same level of intensity. Her voice didn’t really seem to fit the character from the manga, in my opinion. It definitely fits the character from the anime, however. To be quite frank, Yuuki Aoi is an amazing VA and always does a spectacular job in her VA roles, so I’m guessing it was somebody else’s “artistic” interference that caused all of these changes. All of the other characters were voiced pretty well.
All things considered, I feel that this was a very enjoyable series. This was the series that I looked forward to watching the most during the winter 2017 season. This anime's title picture is what drew me in, but I mainly stayed for the asshole, intelligent, soldier loli, who is actually a reincarnated, sociopathic, atheist, former salaryman. I actually really enjoyed his-now-her personality; it essentially MADE this show. This show would not be anywhere near as interesting without Tanya. Without her, it would probably look something like a shittier version of “Alderamin in the Sky (8/10)”.
What to Take away: 8/10
The story is very good, I enjoyed it and you probably will too (8/10). It was paced quite well; nothing feeling too slow or too fast. Tanya was really the only character that received development, but she’s really all that the series needed anyways (7/10). The art is absolutely great, having some of the best background art that I’ve seen in the anime genre, but they screwed up the female characters’ beauty from the manga in order to make them look scarier (9/10). The OP and ED were great, but the background OSTs would’ve been better if they sounded heavier to suit the war vibe, like something Sawano Hiroyuki would compose(7/10). Tanya’s voice was great, but she occasionally sounded relatively squeaky. I would definitely recommend this anime to you personally.
Should you watch it?
If you like:
- unique plots,
- intelligent/calculating main characters,
- war anime, military anime, magic anime,
- intense action scenes,
- strategy-based plots,
- great background art,
- and/or evil lolis *hears sirens in the distance*
Then this anime is definitely for you. Otherwise, you probably shouldn’t watch it.
I hope this helps you make your decision on whether or not to watch this anime~
Youjo Senki is a series that succeeds in portraying the “reincarnated and transported to a different world” scenario while having a unique approach on the “military” genre.
The story is well executed and approaches the military genre from a new and unique perspective that I found really entertaining. The character cast is a “one man army” composed of Tanya, aside from her character there really aren’t any other good characters.
The animation works in harmony with the sound department, resulting in a great watching experience that really allows the viewer to enter the show’s world.
For having insulted “God”, an atheist and
arrogant Japanese salaryman in the moment of his death is sentenced to be reborn in an alternate universe similar to 1910's Europe mixed with early aspects of World War II, in an empire torn apart by countless wars with all nearby countries.
The salaryman is reborn as a girl who will be known as Second Lieutenant Tanya Degurechaff of the Imperial Army, a 9-year-old soldier girl. As God stated, if Tanya doesn’t meet her end through a natural death or she refuses to have faith in Him, her soul will be sent to hell for all eternity. In order to avoid going to hell, Tanya decides to enter the Empire’s Mages Division and fight in the “world war” hoping to climb the ladder to the top ranks as fast as possible to remain away from the battlefield as a way to avoid the risk of being killed and at the same time “live the good life”.
Even if the arrogant salaryman is now forced to have the body of a young girl, he soon adapts to the situation and turns into a merciless soldier who prioritizes efficiency above all.
To be honest, in the beginning of the series, and even before I started watching it, I found the “man in loli body” to be ridiculous and it actually bothered me for the duration of the first 3 episodes but I soon got over it and got intrigued by Tanya’s character instead of being bothered by her appearance.
The story takes place in quite a normal world, except for the existence of “magic”. The show does a good job at portraying how differing countries can act when they are disagreeing, just skipping the political talks and jumping to war, and the way it employs real war tactics such as trench warfare was really nice to see.
Also, the “Empire” can be compared to WW1 Germany, the Republic can be compared to France and the enemy alliance can be compared to the Triple Entente (and a few more comparisons I won’t bother mentioning), I found all these similarities to be a great addition to the show by giving it veracity.
The story unfolds at a satisfying pace, nothing felt like it was developing too fast or too slow, but the first episode could have been done better and used to explain things such as why the Empire is fighting against so many countries, how the magic-based weapons work, how magic came to be, etc. With that in mind, the first episode did its job well, its purpose was to display an interesting scene that will compel the viewer to watch the series by showing that there is gonna be a ton of action, and it did that very well.
I consider Youjo Senki to be quite the unique “military” show that approaches things from a different and interesting perspective, compared to what I am used to. On the other hand, it lacks the complex story and meaningful messages it would take for me to consider it a “very good” series.
There aren’t many “clever” moments or twists that left me pondering, just a straightforward story that although it is a tad bit ridiculous at times, I found it good.
“War does not decide who is right, but who is left”. What really separated Youjo Senki from other generic war series (like Izetta:The Last Witch) was the fact that there are no real “bad guys”, or in this case bad countries, only patriots blindly believing their country’s propaganda and soldiers following orders which is very true and realistic.
This is what I found very dumb: People, that studied and experienced war for 20-30 years can’t come up with a good strategy but the businessman Tanya (because that is what she/he really is, a businessman) was able to do so without any effort. Even if I was to take into account the possibility that Tanya studied war and had a natural talent for it, that still wouldn’t explain the veteran’s incompetence nor Tanya’s success, it’s just ludicrous.
This is where Youjo Senki fails. Except for Tanya and “Being X” there really is no one that is worth mentioning, the support characters are just bland tropes used for decor, having the banal purpose of being plot tools, sacrifices or just to fill up the void.
Tanya Degurechaff, the protagonist, is a young blonde, blue-eyed 10 years old girl who is the reincarnation of a cold-hearted atheist and social-darwinist Japanese salaryman who was sent to another world because “he” who is now a “she” insulted God. Compared to others, Tanya has a high latent magical ability and is the only one capable of using an experimental “Type-95 operation orb” due to Being X's interference. She controls a battalion of elite mages whose main purpose is to overwhelm enemy forces while also remaining highly mobile and relatively small.
Tanya is quite ruthless and intolerant towards the mistakes and failures of others, much the same as in her previous life, and employs several extreme punishments and training methods.
What makes her characters interesting is that she is similar to an “anti-hero”, she is merciless, cunning, egoistic, arrogant and shows sociopathic tendencies through the façades she uses and monologues that explain the logic and reasonings behind her actions. Tanya doesn’t wish for riches, world fame, world domination or other generic motives, she only has the mundane goal of living a comfortable life that ends by a natural death, which I found a bit hilarious but also original and made me relate to her character a bit.
“Being X” is a self-centered and villainous god-like entity, more like a self-proclaimed God, and throughout the series it forces Tanya to praise his name by putting her in situations where she has no other choice than doing so. His form is unknown, he only appears through proxies but we know he has absolute power since he altered the fundamentals of the world on multiple occasions.
What bugged me was his unknown reason for being so obsessed with Tanya. Out of millions of non-believers he chose particularly that salaryman and then invested quite a lot of time (since this “god” doesn’t seem to be omnipotent and omnipresent) in trying to make that salaryman a believer. It just seems odd.
The animation has a well-suited color palette, it is fluid with well-done CGI and the background art is beautiful, but the character design is… let’s just say the character design leaves to be desired.
The action scenes have such a natural flow that it’s mesmerizing, it offers a very good and immersive watching experience, and the animation, without a doubt, is one of the best this season.
I liked the opening theme but I found the ending theme to be great and I almost never skipped it, that says quite a lot. The OST is very good and gives one hell of an immersive experience because you can feel the impact behind every explosion, gunshot, etc. Most of the voice actors interpret the characters very well (loved whenever Being X made an appearance) but there are actors who could have done their job better.
I highly enjoyed this series, which was a surprise to me.
The action scenes were great and the show didn’t have any moments I found obscenely ludicrous or any other irritating factors.
Youjo no Senki is a good show that employs a unique and well done plot accompanied by decently constructed characters, coming in a package with very good animation and sound. I recommend giving this show a try.
I had no interest in Tanya when it first aired. Its preview on ANN was poor and the story sounded bizarre to me. However, after the first few episodes I noticed this anime was recieving more and more good reviews and generating some buzz, so I decided to check it out. And I'm very glad I did.
Tanya is an original take on the now well-tred Isekai/AU genre. Firstly, the character is born (with a different gender) into the new world instead of merely being transported, as an adult, into it. Secondly, Tanya's goal is to survive in this new
world and make a success of her life there, not to go on an adventure or defeat some bad guy.
Tanya is evil in a sense, but not in the typical villain way. Being a salaryman in the previous life, she has a drive towards success and self-preservation, no matter the cost to others. She does occasionally demonstrate a more truly malevolent streak, which is always fun to watch.
The strength of the lead's character means that Saga of Tanya the Evil is highly enjoyable both in war scenes and long dialogue sequences between Tanya and military higherups - it is a rare anime of any sort that can claim that.
Tanya was animated by a new studio called NUT, and they have done an excellent job. The art is detailed, backgrounds are often beautiful, and most importantly Tanya looks like no other anime char I've ever seen. She can look both adorably cute, and terrifyingly evil, in the same episode.
Tanya's voice actor has a difficult job portraying such an original MC. It took a while to get used to the way her voice sounds but now I'm of the opinion that both her voice and performance is perfect for the role. It's also worth noting the OP song which is a catchy techno beat.
Tanya is what last season's Izetta should have been. This anime could have been a failure with worse writing, less competent production, or a lack of a unique and highly watchable main character. Instead, Tanya has all 3 and more. It is already a frontrunner for most surprisingly good anime of the year.
To the people who finally expected a negative review on this show, sorry for being late; Being X gave me trouble. Also, expect lots of religion puns; have a problem, then you'd probably have a hell of a time with this damn review.
Youjo Senki is a pathetic waste that doesn't know what the hell it's talking about, stuck in its own incompetence and stupidity of vengefulness and craziness that it completely ruins a potentially good war story in the name of edge and sacrilege. From its ridiculous premise that's a sloppy combination of the premises of Drifters and Izetta (both mediocre and bad war shows
from the previous year respectively), to its laughable and generic attempts at emotion, this anime has less depth and intelligence than a Michael Bay movie; at least those have nice Megan Fox fan service and CGI that isn't fugly as hell. So, why did this train wreck of an anime bomb harder than a pack of fighter planes? Let's find out, shall we?
So, a psychopathic businessman gets killed, but in the midst of death, encounters a pissed off God that reincarnates him as a mage girl in an alternate world and torments him. Again, just like Drifters, with a bit of Izetta. From there, we learn of the poorly defined magic that has multiple unexplained spells and bullets because the anime doesn't sit down and tell us about the many variations of spells and bullets shown throughout the anime. Plus, the hover system our protagonist's side uses makes no sense, with it being a 1-legged booster with nothing to help give them horizontal support. From there, we plunge into the two main plot lines: Tanya rises through the tanks in the name of self-preservation and hates the damn deity known as God, or Being X. Both of these are handled horribly, especially the latter since the anime doesn't have faith in us, meaning that it has to remind us about it at least 4 times per episode. I mean, dissing God and making him cruel is a good and compelling plot point, especially if we constantly remind the audience at nauseam, right?
As for the war itself, well, this show keeps skipping giant chunks of this World War that would really be beneficial to know, like the assembling of multiple companies under Tanya’s rule, seeing Tanya become major, establishing just who is currently in the war without resorting to “who are we fighting this episode”, etc. and it's quite upsetting since it basically sacrifices the real soul of the war just for the sake of fueling the awful plot of Tanya Vs God. It all feels arbitrary for the sake of a singular character’s plot, which is a major sin in and of itself, especially in execution. Plus, in the later episodes where major war-ending schemes are launched, we get little insight on them (or sometimes are just thrusted into them without knowing what the hell they are), and with no sense of transition whatsoever. They literally gutted this war just for the sake of 12 episode pacing because god forbid we actually get character development, proper play-by-play on the events of the war, or anything that could help make a decent war story. Plus, some of these events, like Tanya stabbing a dude in the heart before dropping him alone in a huge body of water and them him somehow being alive and a mage ready to end her, raise major plot holes that really damn this script. Needless to say, this ain’t no Saving Private Ryan, or even Pearl Harbor. By the final act, it gave up trying and just opted for pathetic deaths and displays of emotion, and a worthless cliffhanger. The show finally accepted defeat by the finale, surrendering any pretense of knowing what it was talking about, as I said it did earlier. What a waste of potential. Not even gonna touch any more of the ludicrous plot holes or moments of forced drama; this is already SEED Destiny levels of hellishly stupid.
The crux of your enjoyment (or lack thereof) comes down to whether or not you like and/or tolerate Tanya as a character. Suffice it to say, I did not. She's only characterized as an unreasonably psychotic warrior who knows some decent military stuff (more than many experienced generals who have been doing this longer than Tanya has been alive in her current reincarnation), and almost nothing else into the final act, where she shows a teensy bit of compassion and turmoil. She doesn't develop or even get fleshed out despite her hogging the spotlight for 95% of this anime; can't go three minutes without her, making it an even bigger shame. People like to say that she is a villain protagonist, and that is just plain untrue. Villain protagonists are the people in which while we get to see them the most and what they go through to reach their eventual demise, the point of the story is to see them fail. Tanya is supposed to succeed against the adversity of war and the dickishness of God, therefore, she is a protagonist who isn't a villain, just overly brutal and unpleasant; a byronic hero, if you will.
Let's compare her to two other military badass protagonists, Lelouch vi Britannia from Code Geass, and Char Aznabe from Gundam (I know he is usually an antagonist, but he's the protagonist of Origin and Zeta, so I win). Like Tanya, Lelouch vi Britannia is also arrogant and brutal, and suffers turmoil the more he goes on in his war,. However, we get to see many sides of him, from his charismatic side, to his lazy side, to his dorky side that proves how physically weak he is. We see him in a variety of perspectives and how he mostly deteriorates in the just causes he believes in. Unlike Tanya, we get to know a lot about him from his past to the many different demeanors he expresses around different people, aside from bloodlust and calmness. As for Char Aznable, he is a psychopath, just like Tanya, except portrayed in a realistic manner instead of an eccentric cartoon interpretation of a psycho. Tanya is a dick to people, willing to kill many of them for disobeying her, and is not a pleasant person to be around, especially when bloodthirsty; she's a simple anime crazy person, or what is basically what uninformed people deem as psychopathic characters. Char, on the other hand, is a true psychopath. He cuts of close relationships with people for his own goals, sets up people for death just to survive and not get his cover blown, or just because he has no use for them anymore, and does it all with one goal in mind. He seems approachable, but he is cold, twisted, and calculated, and has become a perfect soldier who isn't in need of compassion, especially after the first person he has romantic feelings for died in front of him. Now, is it a bit dickish to compare a new character like Tanya to two of the most well-written and recognizable anime characters in history? Maybe, but it sets things into perspective.
People sometimes joke about how Tanya is the only actual character in the show, and barring a few minor exceptions, this holds some actual water. We have Viktoriya, who I can only describe as a discount Akane Tsunemori (from Psycho-Pass) with no development or fleshing-out, and the other characters aren't worth remembering, like Weiss. There's this one decent dude Tanya stabs, and he becomes a useless and crazy person who no longer speaks, there's his daughter who only gets two scenes of screen time, there are Tanya's other soldiers who are largely the same character, there's a generic mad scientist...what a riveting cast, right, ladies and gentlemen? Plus, all of the generals barring one are basically the exact same except one is old, one had blue hair, and one cracks occasional jokes. None of these guys develop or are fleshed out, and when some do go through turmoil, it's usually in the stupidest, most emotionally manipulative, and contrived ways imaginable. Talk about a ungodly cast; best of the year, right everyone?
You know how people stress making a good first impression? Well, Studio NUT did the exact opposite with how they handled the animation of this series. There is so much ugly CGU that is is grating, especially when it is CGI Tanya, CGI soldiers, or a CGI rotating landscape show that would only look acceptable in a WWII PS3/XBOX 360 game. It is absurd how much of it there is, and it almost never looks good. I also counted 5 moments where the rate rate went straight to hell; one in episodes 4, 7, 10, 11, and 12 respectively, with the first two being ugly rotating shot surrounded by ugly CGI books and battleships respectively. The directing can be pretty awful too for some of these reasons. Sure, the magic (discounting when the magic barriers break and become ugly CGI fragments) looks pretty, and so do the bullets, but that doesn't help when it comes to poorly done action scenes (where dodging is a rarity) and awful CGI and cinematography. At least the interior design looks ice, but man do some of the characters look awful at times. I also hate Viktoriya's facial design, which is weird since one of the only good things about this anime's aesthetic is how different everyone's faces are, and how detailed and decently shiny theirs can look at times. I could go on and on about the awful CGI and everything else, but you get the point. For Studio NUT's first production, it doesn't look pretty, which is a shame when you compare that to the first anime done by Trigger, WIT, and MAPPA (Kill la Kill, many parts of Attack on Titan since they worked on it with Production I.G., and Terror in Resonance).
If nothing else, barring the horrible sound effects that look like there sometimes recorded from a broken boom box, this show sounds pleasing. The OP, "JINGO JUNGLE" by MYTH & ROID, is an addicting watch that perfectly encapsulates the crazed tone of this series, but this band makes amazing music anyway if their contributions to Re:Zero are anything to speak of. The ED, "Los! Los! Los!" by Tanya Degurechaff (Aoi Yuuki), is a decent ED that somewhat accomplishes the same goal, except this one is just passable whereas the OP is awesome. The music is also decent at what it tried to do, but isn't very memorable despite being actually kinda good.
As for the dub, it's alright. Most of the background and named character voices are pretty alright. However, I have issue with the voice of Tanya. To be fair to Monica Rial (the VA for Tanya), I don't really think any english voice actor could've really nailed the role of Tanya' and she does do the best she can while being one of the better possible picks for that character. Unfortunately, some moments fall noticeably flat and the character doesn't really lend itself to any english voice actor aside from a 10-12 year-old girl who's willing to sound really deranged and composed at the same time, sort of like a little-girl DBZ KAI Frieza. All in all, not a bad dub.
Look, can't we just all admit that this was a terrible season of anime? Whether you agree or not, what a coincidence that the last anime I tackle this season manages to represent everything wrong about Winter Anime 2017, from awful frame rate hiccups, to god-awful and overused CGI, to a dearth of memorable characters that get properly fleshed out, to asinine plot twists and writing that abandons all cohesion. These were surprisingly popular trends for this infernal anime season in particular. When I first heard of this show, I had hoped it would be Shuumatsu no Izetta done right after that show turned from promising series into a pathetic mess, but after the first episode, I lost faith. Said faith died even more the more this show kept going on. With all that said, before I find myself court-martialed for hating this popular war anime, I shall bid you adieu.
How would a modern day salaryman from Japan, an especially ruthless and career-focused one too, manage to survive as a little orphan girl in a war ridden world where magic exists and a being that calls himself God tries his best to make things harder for said girl?
The synopsis might sound a little messy. And honestly, Youjo Senki is an anime that I didn't plan to watch but tempted by the pretty amazing opening song, I decided to give it a try when it started airing. And I'm very glad I did.
The aforementioned salaryman was in his original life a cold person that only
focused on his job. He didn't feel any sympathy towards those he had to fire. His goal was to climb the steps of his career and to live an easy and peaceful life. And it was all going according to his plan, until the day a man he had fired took revenge on him and pushed him in front of a train. In the moment of his death, he is faced by a being that claims to be God. Believing that modern people don't need God, the protagonist denies his existence until the very end. And as a result of their conversation, he is reborn in a world of dire straits, where he needs to live on as a little orphan girl in the harsh reality of war. And in spite of the bad situation around, our protagonist - now known as Tanya Degurechaff - doesn't plan on giving up on living a proper life.
The overall concept is pretty unusual. I was skeptical at first, but in the end it works fine. The show tells not only a story of a very young girl progressing with her military career, but also a fight between her and said Being X who tries to make Tanya recognize him as God. The story is very interesting and engaging, mostly thanks to the protagonist.
Tanya is a character that is very nice to follow. She's dead set against Being X and manages to live on and be successful in spite of all the hardships he puts her in. It's fun to watch her accomplish new things and it's fun to watch her struggle. She's a strong character and, since her personality remains the same as in her previous life, she is still focused on pursuing an easy life and avoiding unnecessary mess. But if everything goes wrong, she puts her mind to it to overcome the obstacles.
Her experiences in the previous life weren't fruitless either. Not only does she have some knowledge of the war which in her original life had already happened, but her cold and career minded personality is perfectly suited for a soldier. But there's more - she's also progressing as a character in her new life. In the end, we can see she is a little different - she has gotten to know more about the human nature and its unpredictability. And she uses this knowledge. I loved Tanya and now she is one of my favorite characters in general. She fuels the story and is perfect fit for a main character, if you're not looking for perfectly moral warriors of justice. It's not that she's complete villain either. In spite of her being called evil, she's not essentially a bad person. She avoids unnecessary conflict and likes to have things peaceful. But at the same time, she doesn't hesitate to do everything to wipe out her enemies and she shows no mercy for the disobedient comrades either. And to top it off, she's genuinely enjoyng the battlefield.
Sadly, it's only Tanya that shines so brightly in this show. There aren't many memorable characters. There are many bland personalities and her soldiers don't have much to them either. There was only a little more focus on a small group of them, especially on Viktoriya. But unfortunately, the story hasn't progressed enough to put her or any other side character in the spotlight yet. Also, the main villain of the story only appears in the last episode.
As for the art, it's decent. The not so pretty CGI is used here and there but it's something I'm able to forgive - it didn't hurt my eyes that badly. No major animation problems spotted either. The character design may be disappointing for some, since it was changed quite a lot in comparison with the LN/manga designs. But honestly, I didn't mind. It's not a show where I'd like to see a cutie that ran away from some shoujo show and put a military uniform on. Which is yet another good point of the show! Tanya is not your average cute loli, and she's even less cute if you remember who she originally is. The characters in Youjo Senki aren't supposed to be some eyecandy, and I got used to the way they look quickly.
The music was very good. The background music was remarkable, but at the same time a little repetitive. It wasn't that big a problem though. It sounded good. The opening song - Jingo Jungle by Myth & Roid - is a pretty amazing song and actually the thing that made me give the show a try. The song fits the show very well. And the same thing can be said about the ending song - Los! Los! Los! sung by Tanya (Yuuki Aoi). Her VA did an EXCELLENT job not only with said song but with her voice as Tanya in general. The voice acting was generally good in this show, but it's Yuuki Aoi that shines very, very brightly this time. Her monologues are really something else. There's also another ending song (episode 8) which is Sensen no Realism by Niina Mako. The song is just about perfect, I'd say.
Another thing that is worth mentioning is the fact that this show is very detailed. More than you could think at first. I'm not gonna lie, I'm not very good at history. But there were some pretty neat details here and there. There are other details that aren't related to history, but also nice to see. Like Tanya's change of voice throughout the series, her problems with carrying the rifle (explained in the Youjo Shenki mini anime), the way conversation and fight scenes are choreographed (where camera movements tell us who is on the advantage at the moment).
All in all, in spite of its flaws (like there being no other particularly important character aside from Tanya or the last episode ending on a cliffhanger), Youjo Senki is an extremely enjoyable show that is far from being generic. And it's mostly this enjoyment, my love for Tanya and the excitement I felt waiting for each episode that make me give it a 9. It's not perfect but it's definitely solid (putting away the very personal feelings, I'd say it deserves a 7 or so) and it depends on the viewers tastes how much they are going to enjoy this anime because like I said - it's mostly Tanya that fuels the show and not everyone likes her and the overall idea of this anime. I enjoyed it A LOT and I hope with all my heart that it wasn't just an ad for the LN and that there wil be another season. Which would make sense, considering it's NUT's first anime and a pretty successful one.
Youjo Senki’s protagonist Tanya quickly rose to become my personal favorite character of the winter 2017 season. I guess psychotic loli nazis make for exquisite characters.
Set in an alternate universe that is similar to the era of the first World War, Youjo Senki follows Tanya Degurechaff as she fights in the Empire’s army. This empire is essentially the world’s version of Germany. In fact, every territory mentioned in the anime shares a geographic resemblance to actual European countries in our world. The major difference between reality and this fantasy realm is that magic exists in this parallel universe while it obviously (though unfortunately) doesn’t
exist in our society. It is revealed that Tanya has an abnormally high affinity with magic, which is the predominating reason why she is able to quickly rise through the Empire’s ranks along with her cunning and manipulation skills. Youjo Senki’s story follows Tanya as she fights for the Empire and steadily rises to become their most notorious soldier.
In terms of execution, Youjo Senki has both positives and negatives. It does an excellent job at introducing Tanya and providing background on her sadistic personality and distorted mentality. The anime quickly delves into her backstory, giving viewers valuable information on Tanya that helps them to better understand her goals and actions. However, at around the midpoint of the amine, it feels like the detail put into the plot dissipated. It seemed like Tanya’s motivations and goals evaporated and were replaced with her blindingly following the orders that were given to her by her superior officers. In the initial episodes, viewers were given insight on Tanya’s reluctance to follow the commands bestowed upon her and were showed the ways in which she planed to worm her way out of undesirable situations. Yet later on in the anime it feels like she just blatantly accepts whatever the higher ups tell her to do or just complains about the orders but then executes them without question, which results in blandness that could have been avoided if Tanya had simply acted like she did in the first few episodes.
When it comes to the story, the anime did a fairly decent job at portraying how differing countries can end up disagreeing and fighting to a point that culminates in a world war. My problem was that there wasn’t much information given on why the Empire was fighting on so many different fronts in the first place. I believe that the first episode might have quickly explained this, but it was so poorly done that I can’t even recollect what that reason might have been. Was it for territory? Power? Could it have ben out of desperation? Were they attacked first? Whatever the reason might have been, it was so indeterminately established that it made the warring seem somewhat pointless.
Another thing I’d like to mention is how useless trench warfare is in the world of Youjo Senki. Just think about it. In this universe, magic exists, and individuals who posses magic, known as mages, are given flying devices and enhanced weaponry. If technology is advanced enough to create these flying contraptions, then why even bother to waste time and funding on ground forces? The mages can literally decimate them with an aerial assault as shown in the first episode. While it was an important battle tactic in the first World War, trench warfare and grounded units in general just seem like an utter waste in this anime. It takes so much time and effort to dig trenches, yet soldiers in them get wiped out at a laughably swift pace by the mages. Shouldn’t the government and military of these nations focus on building up their mage forces since they can literally wipe out entire battalions without taking a single loss as shown with Tanya and her squadron?
I have mixed feelings about this section. On one hand, the backgrounds and scenery can look very vivacious and detailed at times. When it comes to the battles, dark colors and imagery are used to emphasize the tense atmosphere that a battlefield is meant to have. However, I find that watching simplistically animated individuals flying around in the sky while randomly shooting at each other gets boring rather fast. The only character that keeps these scenes fresh and interesting is Tanya, whose insane facial expressions alone make the fight scenes much more enjoyable to watch.
I start to have problems when it comes to the character designs. Excluding Tanya, they are all rather plain, but there is nothing particularly wrong with most of them. However, the appearance of secondary protagonist Viktoriya is quite lackluster. I think the animators were trying to make her look cute and innocent, but her design is just sloppy. I have mixed feelings on Tanya’s design. Sometimes she looks perfectly fine, however in some cases (usually when her lips are drawn in an overinflated manner or her eyes look weird), I’m not that fond of her appearance. There just seems to be an inconsistency with the art regarding Tanya.
Tanya’s voice actress, Aoi Yuuki, does an exceptional job at making her character sound both adorable as well as insane when necessary. She really brings life to Tanya, and I just loved listening to her voice. The opening theme song is performed by one of my favorite groups, Myth & Roid, and is definitely an above average composition. The ending theme song, Los! Los! Los!, is an addictingly catchy tune, and it has become one of my personal favorite anime songs. It is sung by Aoi Yuuki, so more props to her. The sound quality in Youjo Senki is easily one of its stronger points.
Tanya Degurechaff is one of the most entertaining characters that I’ve seen in awhile. As I stated in the beginning, Tanya is essentially a psychotic loli nazi (yes, I know that nazis are from WW2 and not WW1, meaning that its inaccurate to label Tanya as a nazi since Youjo Senki is set in a period similar to that of the first World War, but I find the title ‘nazi’ to be very befitting of Tanya) who derives pleasure from the suffering and annihilation of her enemies and is stimulated by the carnage effectuated from battle. This is honestly enough to certify Tanya as a rather good character, but does she accomplish enough to be considered a great character? In all honesty, I don’t think so. The latter episodes don’t really develop her much, and the enjoyment derived from watching her slowly decreases as the anime progresses. Nonetheless, Tanya is still a detailed and intriguing character, and its refreshing to watch her in action.
I’m not going to dedicate much time discussing the supporting cast since they really aren’t worth mentioning. They’re all there to either advance the plot, fill up space, or be sacrifices to Tanya. Oh, and there’s also Viktoriya. I really don’t see what her purpose is.
Youjo Senki starts off strong by showcasing its leading character completing epic feats throughout the first couple of episodes. Unfortunately, with each passing episode, especially after episode four or five, my interest in the show steadily dropped. It was still good, but I felt like the plot started to drag on at a slow pace without much happening outside of Tanya and her squad killing enemies who would just sort of appear without any significant explanation on their goals and/or purpose. All the anime let us know was that they were all vastly inferior to Tanya, which always meant that the outcome of these skirmishes would be the same. This resulted in some boring episodes that honestly weren’t very entertaining viewing experiences. The only thing that remained consistently enjoyable to watch was the sadistic nature of our leading lady Tanya, and quite honestly, that was enough to keep me interested in this anime.
While the overall plot left more to be desired and the animation took away from the general presentation of the anime, Youjo Senki was still able to be a good series due to its entertaining protagonist as well as its great sound quality and the general enjoyment derived from watching it. If you’re looking for a strong and/or insane female lead, I’d suggest watching this anime. If you’re into vaguely historical anime integrated with fantasy, then I’d wholeheartedly recommend Youjo Senki.
This is a review to help you understand the if you are interested in this.
It takes place in WW1 with currently aircraft being replaced by mages apparently. they fly and use very basic sort of magic like making rifle shells explode like a grenade. the WW1 and everything is done beautifully and for the first few minutes i was very interested.
then you have the main character who's animated so awkwardly compared to the rest of the anime, and the voice is annoying. To be honest i was going to watch it for its story and WWI setting ignoring the character but by the next few
episodes i really like the character. True the voice can be annoying at times but it quickly grows on you. I actually like the main character a lot now.
The characters are surprisingly likeable and the motivations of the main character I enjoy.
This is a good anime when given the chance with most of the flaws I saw at first glance turn into the anime's favor given try. Give it a couple episodes and see for yourself.
I'm writing this review based on my impressions of the first few episodes, and what I know about the manga and LN. Its unfortunate, but this anime is probably already hopeless.
In a NUTshell (NUT is the apparently new studio responsible for this), this anime has failed. The art is crap, the animation is crap, the screenplay is crap, the sound is crap, and the voice acting is crap. No amount or quality of plot could possibly make up for this.
Can be said as simply as this: "What the hell did they do to the main characters' faces?" The art is extremely basic and lacking
in detail; take a quick look at the art from the LN or manga, and you should instantly see the massive downgrade in quality. Even without that comparison, it's some of the lazies and shittiest art you can find in any commercial anime.
My complaints that you should probably skip:
Single lines as eyebrows, no textures, no details, maybe 6 different shades of color per character (2 for hair, 3 for uniform, 1 for skin. Complete shit), and a full color palatte that I can probably count on my fingers. The backgrounds look pretty much all the same, and in the few minimalistic action scenes, there aren't any backgrounds at all; just solid blocks of monocolored shit. And what the hell is with Serebryakov's diseased dinnerplate eyes with spines sticking out the side? Her face looks completely f***ed up.
As if the art wasn't bad enough by itself; the anime boasts tons of simple panning, still-frames and frames with just mouth movement, tons of recycling the same animation (For example: portrait of person A's mouth moving, switches to portrait of person B's mouth moving, then to the same previous portrait of person A's mouth moving); overall, it's some lazily-ass garbage; a pathetic excuse for animation.
The soundtrack is mediocre, the sound effects (such as guns or cannons) are completely off and have garbag depth and quality, and the voice acting is predominantly shit; about as bad as your average English dub. Every single character aside from Tanya sound slow, stupid, and retarded, and the idiotic dialogue doesn't help either.
Tanya herself is supposed to be intimidating despite her age, but it comes out as flat and childish in the voice acting (Maaybe I'm being a bit harash with Tanya's voice, but the rest are truly horrific).
None of these people act or sound like they've ever been in a battle in the entire lifetime. Dumb narration monologues that state the obvious are common (Like "He's doing that? But that should be impossible!" or "What? He just used an explosive shell!). Moreover, they sound like carefree, blind idiots, as if they were from some slife of life anime, not a war anime.
It's obviously too early to begin judging the plot, but all other aspects heavily swing this anime into the "complete shit" rating.
If you were wondering, the anime is based in an alternate setting of WWI that includes mages, set from Germany's (The Empire's) perspective. Not particularly innovative so far, since much of the anime follows real history.
Before Youjo Senki even aired, I had preconceived notions about it. Based on its ridiculous main character and overall premise, I was sharpening my literary claws in preparation to critically rip it to shreds in this eventual review. Lollis, reincarnation, magic and the tedious politics of war were all aspects I roll my eyes at individually, so naturally I didn’t have my hopes up very high after the first episode. After concluding the final segment of Youjo Senki, I can say without doubt that my initial impressions couldn’t have been farther from my analysis of the finished product. It’s an anime I wanted to hate,
but in the end surprised the hell out of me.
The Saga of Tanya the Evil starts out on a battlefield. The fog of war is palpable and laden with smells of gunpowder and blood. Screams of agony and despair resonate from friend and foe alike, causing your bones to shake with an uncontrollable fear. This is war. The first thing I noticed about the anime was the expert level of sound design. Each explosion and gunshot echoed in my brain, causing my focus to increase with each passing moment.
Then, as if transported from the wrong anime… Tanya appeared.
The stark juxtaposition of the cute, Aryan 9 year old against the malevolence of a gruesome battlefield was hard to swallow. I just couldn’t grasp how she was written into the anime at all. To add to her perplexing position, appearing beside Tanya was another glassy-eyed damsel, who clumsily trudged through the combat zone, narrowly evading enemy fire. Adding to the gunfire and merciless killings was the boom and crack of magical attacks from certain individuals. Mages, who could harness supernatural forms of energy contributed to the battle, a clear reminder that I was watching an anime and not a literal historical account. I paused the episode to digest what I was seeing. I know anime in general has its fair share of nonsensical moments, but the contrast of these characters and abilities with the haunting atmosphere was jarring.
As the series continued, I became less fixated on Tanya’s chibi appearance, and more focused on the personality she exhibited, or the precarious situations she found herself in. Without spoiling, her backstory and purpose is explained, though not in the most sensical way. This disclosure causes most of the “what the hell?” moments to dissipate, and triggers the viewer to really hone in on the finer aspects of what Youjo Senki has to offer. The magic abilities some characters possessed were also loosely explained, as anime often does. Though I’m not sure how I expected these powers to be any bit of believable.
The main story itself is nothing special. We get dropped into an ongoing war between nations (presumably during World War I), both at each other’s throats trying to gain the upper hand in the theatre of battle. Tanya is a captain of a small battalion, relatively insignificant to the grand scheme of things. Through willpower and a stern leadership style, Tanya excels through the ranks in order to gain supreme power and ultimately defy her maker, God himself. There aren’t many “aha” moments or intellectual pondering to be had, just a straightforward war story with the added twist of a cutthroat preteen at the helm. I will also admit that while entrancing to look at, the magic elements weren’t entirely necessary, as the series had enough occult moments to go around.
But seriously people, we don’t need a recap FOR A TWELVE EPISODE SERIES.
If you care for historical fiction or war jargon, this anime is chock-full of it. After the noisy, action-packed battle scenes fade out, they are followed by debriefs, strategery and political patois to ignite the interest of any history buff. Very little of the past or present parallels our world technically, but the rhetoric and red tape of fighting a war are synonymous with some of the battles fought in the 1900’s. Many risks are taken, with some paying dividends while others blowing up in the commander’s faces. It can be pretty engrossing if you can get past Tanya’s childish appearance.
The characters in Youjo Senki are irrelevant with the sole exception of Tanya. She’s cute, ruthless and has a severe case of Napoleon syndrome. At first, I was so nearsighted that I assumed any other main protagonist would’ve been a better fit for the story, but as the anime went on I actually began to think the opposite. Having such a unique character as Tanya for the lead gave Youjo Senki the propensity to stand out from the crowd of its genre. I could appreciate the route the writers went with her backstory and who she really was, but I think her past life should’ve been elaborated on a bit more. In the end, Tanya grew on me as a character, and I eventually even began to empathize with her situations, something inconceivable to comprehend when she was introduced. One complaint I have about the characters is the trouble I had differentiating between friend and foe at various points in the show. Although Tanya and Serebryakova stood out due to their arresting appearance, the others disappeared into a muddled mess of similar faces.
The animation and action scenes in Youjo Senki are some of the stronger points of the anime. No pixel lag or framing issues at all. Definitely one of the strongest showing in visuals this season, and the animators should be patting themselves on the back. The art style is grim and uninviting, utilizing a blend of muted dark colors. This style accentuates the vibe of each scene, and adds to the militant structure of the strategic scenes. The character models for Tanya and her female right hand are vibrant and contrast the battlefield well, and their facial expressions all flowed accurately.
There hasn’t been an anime I’ve pointed out solely due to sound quality since I watched the 2015 release of Knights of Sidonia. Anyone who’s seen that show knows how much realism and feeling was put into each sound effect, and how satisfying they were to listen to. Youjo Senki’s sound engineers emulate the harsh conditions of a war setting meticulously and with a level of finesse barely rivaled. I was quite impressed. The OP, though not always there worked to get the viewers pumped for some intense action scenes, while the epic, pulsing ED was my favorite of the season. Aoi Yuuki did a bang-up job portraying the adolescent tyrant, and from what I’ve read she had a lot of fun playing her as well. The rest of the OST flowed together beautifully, with each track transitioning seamlessly into the next, and adding a level of believability to the accompanied scene.
Most importantly, should you watch Youjo Senki? I was ultimately impressed with how much my mood shifted through the 12 episodes, and can give the anime a solid recommendation. The story won’t blow you away, and the characters (sans Tanya) are uninspiring, but the action scenes and strategic nature of the battles will offer plenty of incentive to stick around. Plus, if you’re all about reincarnation and fighting “God”, there’s plenty of goodies for you to indulge yourself with. I’d recommend this series to fans of action shows or large scale battle shows like Attack on Titan, or Overlord, though the historical elements could relate its fans to Joker Game or others. Surprise of the season? Possibly, but I was certainly glad I watched it, and I’m sure you’ll like it too! Thanks, as always for reading and be sure to check out the rest of my Winter ‘17 reviews!
Let's start off strong: I hate Youjo Senki. I hate what it aims to be, I hate what it is, I hate that it tries to do things it clearly can't do. I'm an incredibly positive guy, always searching for the enjoyment in any type of series, and yet Youjo Senki cannot achieve the simplest of goals I could have set for it: help me with finding those positives.
I will refer to Tanya as "she" instead of "he" throughout this review and hope that doesn't bother anybody.
The Saga of Tanya the Evil is first and foremost an isekai
anime. A very grounded businessman dies after a worker he previously fired throws him under a speeding train. Just before he dies, God, or Being X as the show refers to it, approaches him to talk about his lack of faith and his life lacking values that a human should have. As an atheist, the businessman tries to disprove his existence (Uh, how?), which leads God to reincarnate him into an alternate world as a little girl. This world is one in which war is the main topic, strongest army units are mages: flying soldiers that are able to power up their shots through the use of crystals, and one where EVERYONE IS STUPID AND FAILS AT DECISION MAKING SO BAD THAT IT MAKES ME UNCOMFORTABLE.
My number one gripe with the series are the enemy soldiers and how they compare to Tanya and her squad. Episode one was enough to make me angry. Just to point a couple of horrendous, illogical moments in those 24 minute episode:
- a scout went straight up to the air instead of moving left or right and got sniped instantly.
- Ground units cannot dodge.
- Neither can air units AKA mages
- Tanya's the only character that can dodge
- All that Tanya needs to do in order to win a battle is fire off a couple of her magic attacks
- A squad leader decides to waste a ton of magic energy of all his men just to kill a couple of scouts, not caring about a counterattack that could happen (Spoiler: it happens)
- Soldiers are too often insubordinate towards their superiors
- People can go on an important mission, despite their squad leaders saying no, if they ask hard enough
Let me remind you, that this is a serious war, where people die probably every couple of seconds.
At that point I had hoped that this would maybe be addressed, that some actually reasonable decisions are going to be made, that the threat would grow bigger. Nope. Tanya and her team attacked people by aiming at the enemy and flying towards them as they stare into the barrels of their guns and die like flies. The first dodge that an enemy performed happened in episode 6. When that took place, one of Tanya's subordinates said "Wow, those guys are good!"
Are. You. Kidding. Me.
The standard for an enemy is either one that stays in one place or moves in a straight line. It's not hard to see why, this is the first anime of studio NUT, their budget was limited, they couldn't animate all the movement they wanted, but this is not an excuse at all. The camera could be placed and moved differently to give the illusion of a more living battlefield, they could use less close ups of the kills and instead focused on the shooting soldiers, Tanya or someone else could get hit from time to time and so on. I would even prefer more CGI over the lack of any sort of dangerous atmosphere in this show.
The second big problem I had was the inconsistent intelligence of certain characters. Tanya, who is actually a businessmen on the inside, after reading a lot of books through her young life, is apparently more capable of creating strategies than the HQ is, which is full of people that probably studied war for 30-40 years. Even if I took into account the facts that Tanya came from a world where wars already took place, or she's just naturally talented in those type of things, that would still mean that everyone else is inferior to that one, little human being. And yet, the HQ finally get their shit together and make a proper plan that ends up being a very good one. I am not able to imagine how they were able to do that though, considering that they weren't able to push back the enemy until one person came along.
Thirdly: What really is Being X? He clearly isn't omnipotent, he would easily achieve his goal if he was, he can't predict the future, his actions tend to have very little affect on Tanya or even fail miserably, he gets outsmarted by a mere human, so there's no way his plans are something that he came up with on the go and so on. Also, why would he prioritise this one being over any other? Giving no real rules to what is the God figure and how can it function isn't a problem on its own, that stuff may get explained later, but it becomes one when he is a rather active part of the conflict. It becomes even worse when some of his plans have nearly no effect. For example, in one of the last episodes, another person gets a similar power to Tanya's. The thing is, he doesn't kill a single person, even when he shot one in the back by surprise. Nice power you got there buddy. Tanya killed a small group with her first shot after receiving that power and she was seen flying around before she did that.
But I can forgive anything, absolutely anything, if the show can still be interesting and/or entertaining to me despite its flaws. That's the main reason for why I watch anime. But this anime wasn't able to get to me. The reason being, as soon as Tanya receives her powers, she was able to annihilate almost anything in her way. When you know that there's a really strong weapon that a character can use at any time without consequences or any particular preparation, it makes the fights feel less exciting and repetitive. Was it interesting then? Not really. With everything depending on a God's whim and interference, it was rather random and very sudden. For Tanya to face a serious obstacle, Being X had to interfere or one of her subordinates had to pull something off, but I can't have any idea that it will happen, it just does and I'm supposed to go with that plot point. I don't want to do that though, I want to know what triggered that reaction at that exact point or why would that specific moment go the way it did. It just doesn't leave a lot in the back of my mind, or when it does, it uses that randomly once again. That's not always a bad thing, there were a couple of moments where that paid off and I was genuinely surprised while also understanding how that plot twist works. There were instances of decent writing and it sucks because the quality is so inconsistent, ranging from good to awful.
As for the other strong points of the series, I have to say that it's a pretty solid deviation from the isekai genre. Unlike most other series where the main character is pretty wimpy and doesn't know what's going on, Tanya comes in with a mission. She's gonna beat God at his own game. That part of the story definitely works well, it pushes it far enough to make me interested in the ending alone. It's just a very good concept and I'm sure it will sell many people tired of the usual isekai scheme in some series nowadays.
And that's about it.
All other themes and motives are completely pushed aside for the sake of getting from point A to point B, but what's the point when you left the important things behind? This show doesn't evolve, it just switches rapidly for the sake of convenience. I'm just done.
Dear God, I don't know who came up with the idea of putting a grumpy, atheist businessman into a child with magic abilities that later becomes a soldier but I gotta give him this one. Tanya is really well stylized as a character and grows throughout the series. She starts off as a psycho that desperately tries to cling to survival by using any means into a caring leader of a group that could follow her to the pits of hell, not losing her ideals at the same time. She's smart and collected, but when something doesn't go her way she gets angry and annoyed. She is stylized to contrast her appearance, she keeps on putting masks in front of different people but is still the same on the inside. She fits the tone of the show and thrives in the setting. When the entire focus is set on her alone, it becomes rather captivating. Her goal and way of living is compelling, maybe even silly, in a positive way. Can't really blame her character for the rest of the cast not getting treated the same way. That's because they all get very little detailing compared to Tanya. Once again, she tilts the balance too much.
Let me explain how do I see the cast of the show. Essentially, you could take any character from a specific group, like Tanya's squad or generals back at the HQ, and replace it by another one from that same group, and you'll get the exact same set of characteristics. Their reactions, dialogue, way of thinking would still be the exact same. I can't find a point to this, so the way I see it, it simply has none. While they made a good choice on focusing on Tanya, it makes it so she's the only complicated, convoluted character in the entire show.
There were two other attempts at creating characters. One of them was Serebryakova, another girl that was the second in command in Tanya's group. She spent the most time with Tanya on the battlefield. At first she was a clumsy soldier that acted suddenly and impulsively, but by the end, it's almost like she got rid of her emotions. She grows into a cold killer that's able to sleep despite the hardest of tasks ahead of her and the most brutal things behind her. But.... why? How did that happen? Was it just the fact that she spent time with Tanya? Then why didn't anyone else become this way? Her only defining characteristic in her group is the fact that she's a girl, is that it? At one point, without me even realising, she randomly changed into a different person on the battlefield.
Random.... sudden... where did I hear that before?
The second attempt at making a distinctive character was Erich von Rerugen. He was one of the only people to notice how brutal and demonic Tanya's behaviour is. He simply didn't trust her. He tried to convince the rest of the generals that giving her more power is wrong, but nobody listened to him. This is where his character importance ends. He provides nothing more to the series.
The rest of the cast are as replaceable as they could be. I like using the world "blob" recently, so I'll use it again, because that's exactly what they are. It's like all their lines could be said by just one of them, like someone created only one character and thought it's okay to stretch him onto multiple people. I don't think I can go any more precise about how I feel.
Concluding this part, the cast is clearly created to serve the purpose of surrounding Tanya rather than being their own people. I can see that, but I don't like it at all. At least Tanya was mostly entertaining to follow, having exactly her as an MC is probably the best selling point.
Art and Animation: 4
You better thank the sakuga or I'll be all over this.
The lowest point, as expected. Studio NUT's first project with little budget simply had to include serious amount of CGI and other tricks to save up some money for the important moments. While I could get behind making ground troops CGI, they're going to die in a matter of seconds anyway, but using it so much on mages as they soar and maneuver through the air looks uncomfortably different compared to the rest of the show. Even some key characters can't escape the harsh treatment, we get to see quite a few shots of CGI Tanya. Another thing was the mouth movement, most of the time it's simply the same mouth copied and pasted onto a different character. Perhaps it's not noticeable on the regular, because there are close ups that indeed differ, but at times it's silly seeing so many characters having the same mouth movement.
Despite that, there ARE moments where cutting corners paid off. Some specific battles look much better than others. Considering how important those were, I'm pretty sure that they saved the money to pay the animators for those scenes alone. Most notable one would be the fight in episode 11, where movement is very smooth and energetic.
Besides that, the directing is nothing to write home about. There are way too many still or reused shots, lack of interesting ideas that could help with the heavy usage of CGI, camera placement is very plain so the shots often lack depth they require and such.
The art style looks okay, lot of gray, brown and dark green. Those colors complement the militaristic setting well. The character designs are a bit off, Tanya and Serebryakova look completely different from the male characters. They're drawn differently, have totally different face outlines and shapes. Male characters look much harsher and they have more details. On paper this works, but visually the women stand out more than Necessary. Their gender should be enough to make them stand out amongst all those men flying around them, but with this choice it makes it feel awkward. On their own though, the designs are okay.
The OP and ED were poorly directed and animated, just like the rest of the show they use a lot of still shots, some artwork or backgrounds, sometimes random shots from the show. There is absolutely nothing more to write about here.
Youjo Senki is not the most visually impressing show to say the least...
I will give credit where credit is due: The sound design is great. Before I even get to the music, I have to mention how well implemented the sound effects are.
Firstly, great choice in sounds. They're definitely trying to help the utter lack of dangerous atmosphere simply by sounding dangerous. Everything is very loud, often overtaking the other sounds like voices. This really gives off the feeling of how much chaos is going on around the battlefield. The sounds of magic items actually fit pretty well with the rest of the show. They sound a bit mechanical, which works really well with the time period and setting (alternative World War I). Not like it came off as a surprise, the sound director for the show was the great Iwanami Yoshikazu, who previously worked on famous anime such as Fate/Zero, Unlimited Blade Works, Baccano, Psycho Pass and Sword Art Online. He's been around for a while now, he knows what he's doing.
The voices were expertly picked. I usually don't talk about this too much, I watch series in sub and I don't feel comfortable judging Japanese voices, but Tanya's voice sounds exactly like she is an angry, annoyed child who got access to some insane power. simply put: she sounds crazy and mad, like she should. Miki Schinichiro makes an appearance as Erich, his voice is always great. The other ones do their job well, can't really
The music isn't falling behind too far. It captures the very dynamic feel of the show, but doesn't really make it reach new heights. Accompanies the atmosphere, but doesn't go past being the sidekick. I'd say it's the minimum quality it had to perform at to make it qualify as "good" for me. I have found myself thinking about the OST in between episodes, so that's a good sign.
While the openings weren't well directed, the songs themselves are very catchy and energetic. They feel a bit off when you put the alongside the atmosphere of the show, but they're good enough to overcome that issue for me. JINGO JUNGLE by MYTH & ROID is simply a very good song with very strong lyrics and "Los! Los! Los!" sang by Tanya's seiyuu also feels good on the ears. Those are the kind of openings where you want them going on in the background so you can prepare a sandwich or something.
Rather than focusing on its mistakes, Youjo Senki moved forward with a pace that at least kept things enticing. With a couple of interesting takes on war and the isekai genre, this should have turned into my highlight of the winter season. While it wasn't per say boring, but my experience with Youjo Senki was rather annoying, not interesting, filled to the brim with mistakes and holes that were never covered. Having only a couple of smiles on my face throughout its runtime, I would say I had a pretty bad time with it. It tumbled down in every aspect, but never made a comeback that could save it in my eyes.
Tanya simply isn't that good. No matter at what angle I looked at it, it never was good. It struggled to find its own direction and truly making the most of what it had to offer. Numerous other studios were able to find ways to cover for their lack of budget numerous times before studio NUT came along, but it didn't really try to follow those footsteps. They made an attempt to do what they wanted to do with the money and time they had, which could be commendable if not for the fact that most of my issues depend on the skills of the people writing the show. If that's lacking, no amount of money can save the project. That's how I look at the show - a failed trial run, a miserable attempt at doing things "their own way". Unfortunately, this turned out to be a serious disappointment.
Is it only me, or does every time that Tanya gets annoyed at Being X, she sounds like the villains from Scooby Doo?
"And I would have gotten away with it too, if it wasn't for you Being X!"
As always, this is purely my opinion, but I can't really recommend you to develop your own.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, then it’s probably recognized that the idea of a main character being killed and reincarnated as a totally new person in a new world is a recent new trope. Youjo Senki (Saga of Tanya the Evil) jumps right into the story like pouring rice. It gets more complex as we’ll learn more about the political affairs, wars, and characters. If you fancy fantasy war stories, then Youjo Senki welcomes you with open arms.
To be honest, Youjo Senki can be an intimidating title. The promotional image alone can provoke some thoughts for viewers as they will wonder what kind
of person Tanya really is. The show label her as one of the most dangerous individuals among the Imperial army. However, the truth is that this seemingly deadly girl was once a salaryman but was reincarnated after angering a mysterious entity (Being X). The show chronicles Tanya and her dangerous adventure as a fighter on the battlefield.
While the setting takes place in alternate world, it’s noticeable that it doesn’t look much different from our very own. It has the look of the 20th century in Europe although magic exists in particular with weapon warfare. The troops involved in war doesn’t look different either with their very human traits and besides magic, there really isn’t anything abnormal. However, Tanya is a complex character that I would label as very different compared to a lot of the other characters. She is sadistic and self-serving based on her tactics and actions. Anyone that is part of her battalion can expected to be humiliated or trained in ways they can’t begin to imagine. The constant mind games she engages with Being X brings a lot of psychology to her character and we learn about her personality. Throughout the series, we see that she constantly stands up against Being X and defies it while the latter tries to break her resolve. In ways, she can even be seen more as an anti-hero.
As I said before, if you fancy fantasy war stories, then this will be your cup of tea. Just do note that the show isn’t really just about action but also a lot of internal affairs and military politics. It’s also comparable in ways to World War I on the Europe Theater. Germany can be compared to as the Empire, while the Republic resembles France. The Legedonia Federation can be referenced to a united Scandinavia. The story itself may be somewhat confusing to understand as some characters’ motives are not entirely clear. Being X is probably the guiltiest of this example. However, the war itself has a lot of reasons whether it’s related to imperialism, political, or personal reasons. It still draws out the cruelty of war though with the violence, bloodshed, and causalities. It’s also not uncommon to see trench warfare similar to those used in World War I and bombing of cities. The essence of magic brings the fantasy element to the war with flying devices and powerhouse spells. I can’t imagine if our World War I would be fought with these new gadgets.
The character cast of Youjo Senki isn’t too dynamic. As the main female protagonist, Tanya steals the most highlight from this show thanks to her personality and skills. One other noticeable female character is Visha. As part of the Imperal Army, her personality is much kinder although still tough and vigilant. She also seems to understand Tanya and even believes that the way Tanya treats her subordinates is to ensure their survival in actual war. Unfortunately, the show doesn’t really highlight many other characters from the Imperial Army as they stand behind the scenes. On the opposition of the Imperial Army, one character that stood out could be Anson Sioux, a man who develops a vendetta against Tanya. Despite some of these characters being given spotlight, Tanya is still the main event running the show.
Now as a manga and light novel reader, I have not read too far into this series but the story still expands from where the anime left off. It’s an incomplete adaptation and with just 12 episodes, I didn’t expect that they can cover everything. However, I am satisfied with the overall portrayal of the anime as it captures the mood of the war. Even the comedy and humor are thrown in right with proper timing. Some episodes will also have cliffhangers that will get viewers to speculate future events. It’s basically structured in a way that makes the show more thrilling.
As a series about war, you can definitely expect a lot of action. I am actually quite impressed by the way is animated by NUT, a studio that probably not a lot of people are familiar with. Nonetheless, the action is captured with fast paced movement and choreography. War elements are incorporated with realistic looking guns, uniforms, and its general setting. (war academies, shelters, trenches, etc) The part about magic is portrayed as crueler than what you can expect with aerial dogfights being a main attraction. Still, the most noticeable part about the show is still Tanya. She’s like an angel with the heart of a demon. It’s hard to take her seriously with the way she looks until you see her fight in battle. A running gag in the show made by older man often alludes that she looks like their daughter. What does impress me about the art expression is how it’s able to bring Tanya’s personality to its fullest to make the biggest impact. Sadistic expressions are not uncommon especially when she goes on a rampage. While the series has violence though, it does keep it less tame on television (maybe BD will leave them uncensored?). It still makes its point that the war is anything but a safe haven as bodies drop to the floor.
Soundtrack wise, I think the show made it worthy of being a war story. I can’t imagine how many times I have felt intimidated by Tanya just based on her voice alone when she’s on a rampage. Not only that, the show brings in an impressive feel of psychology whenever Being X makes its presence. That sinister voice and god complex is hard to ignore. The OP and ED theme songs has a heavy metal-like instrumental sound although they both sound pretty similar.
Youjo Senki is a show that I probably won’t forget for a while and not easily recommendable for anyone. It has the ingredients to cook up a story that can intimidate any viewer on first sight. The first episode felt like it drops you into the middle of the story but once you get into the hang of it, it can be quite a ride. Tanya is probably a character that many people will remember from Winter 2017. A loli fighting on the battlefield while giving on demonic face expressions? How often do you see that?
Youjo Senki's concept is kind of risky, it is hard to understand what teh fok is going on at first glance but can easily catch up if the plot is well executed by having good dialogues and decent narration. Youjo Senki is probably the best Anime of Winter 2017 ( all sequels aside ) It is the only series from start to finish delivered and surpasses my expectations, with episode 11 being all well-directed originally by Studio NUT is freaking amazing for a brandnew studio.
The story is about a salaryman who was accidentally run down by a train and was reborn
as a little blonde girl back in WW1( Tanya ). That concept alone is very interesting but a mysterious being calling himself a God just made the story more interesting.
Explaining system / strategies of the military part is complicated but in this series, they tend to rely on heavy dialogues to explain complicated things such as new experiments, device and weapons which I must admit really worked for the series. But the most intriguing part is that Studio NUT added some major events that is not part of the original light novel. yes it is major because 1. it can destroy the whole series easily if its direction is really bad and 2. putting such event makes the series more interesting if it's executed very well. A very risky decision coming from a new studio is really really bad but dude they manage to reach my expectations and with producing such great series. The plot of the series never dropped some direction from start to finish and putting such great work that is very interesting & entertaining with good dialogues and decent execution.
A lot of viewers were criticizing the art style of the series. I think the studio made a good decision putting less detailed style to easily put great animation sequences if needed.
The series relies on good cinematography and well polished backgrounds when characters having interactions. The studio only animating the interaction / heavy dialogue scenes by 3 frames per second which is enough for that. They put more effort on their battle scenes and they reusing their explosion 2d animation from the entire series which is less time consuming and works perfectly. They manage to make new explosion animation on the 11th episode and really just add more quality to the production quality of the series. Having reused animation is not bad but the NUT manage to put of their reused animation in different ways. Action scenes are well directed by putting military strategies and it is not your typical shounen that only randomly fighting each other, putting decent choreography on the action scene is very enlightening. The fights also shows the character's attitude/emotions and every character differs, from very passive but very well strategic person to very aggressive but with bad coordination. It simply shows that Youjo Senki not only relies on Raw 2d animation but they also put some details to it.
The CGI is really bad on the early stages but manage to improve on the later stages. The studio's CGI was either used to put massive amount of people to cover up some time or put some CGI backgrounds to use when air fights are needed. They know that their CGI was kind of a low quality but they manage to pull that out by having quick paneling & point blank transitions and sometimes very far shot and cannot be distinguish even by zooming in. CGI backgrounds are freaking impressive tho, episode 6 was brilliant and ep 11 sky battle was also stellar. Putting good camera movements on the CGI works and by mixing up the Traditional 2d animation was amazing.Their 3d backgrounds are very well rendered and with such good details.
The Sound is very very stellar, from Myth & Roid's Jingo Jungle to Mako Niina's Sensen no Realism. the soundtrack is well done, it puts some fight scenes into more good/aggressive sequence and builds up some excitement through out the action scenes. But the one really impresses me is that they never bothered getting a 2nd Ending theme and that was done by Mako Niina and it was perfect and fits very well on the series. Episode 8 were everyone is like is the series going an anime original and everybody having their doubts of the series bu then suddenly the 2nd ending started playing and it was fokin amazing. The 2nd Ending theme is the best of winter I must admit, It puts the viewer into some excitement and yet emotionally watching the sequence. The series ending theme really differs from all the music themes from all anime this winter, you can almost compare the ending to Rakugo's ending, they both well done and the sound is just amazing. Overall great soundtrack, great opening and topnotch 2nd ending theme.
Tanya's development is nothing special but her characterization is insane, yes she is overpowered but her weakness is very noticeable. She was abandoned and its like she was very alone, only managing things all by herself.She has the knowledge but it seems like everyone doesn't understand her. Being X is a great villain, the character is very interesting and mysterious only having him on the series by saying some strange yet offensive lines that triggers Tanya.
Side characters are the same, no massive developments but their characterization from the whole series is very strong, putting the plot more interesting and managing to put great interactions through out the whole series is just really good. No character developments on a series is bad to be honest but the series just progresses very well even without huge developments. The only development I know is when tanya being reincarnated and the other one where studio NUT originally directed ( not being part of the light novel )
Enjoyment & Overall 9/10
Having Izetta The Last Witch dropped the whole plot on the 2nd half and became a disaster and also Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress with great concept but failed to impress on the 2nd half as an anime original. Studio NUT not only accomplished an amazing adaptation but also by putting their own original events on the later stage of the series just put the series on the top. Never dropped quality, stayed true to its plot and very well executed story. Overall an amazing military/magic series and very entertaining one. The series ended perfectly for a 2nd season but idk if we can get one in teh future.
Imagine the battlefields of the great war...but with flying soldiers who can use magic and a crazy and evil loli girl commanding them. Well that's exactly what this anime is, and its amazing.
I tend to have a soft spot for war based things but this spiked my interest the moment i found out magic was involved. Seeing WW1 fought with magic is crazy enough without having to including an overpowered evil loli.
The sound is so smooth. I don't know about anybody else but when an anime executes the sound correctly it makes me engrossed and unable to hear a single thing that happens outside of
Amazing watch so far for both military and fantasy anime lovers.
I would've loved if they explained some things such as how this war started, the origin of the "mages", or even the story of the salaryman. That aside, you cannot just deny this is a hell of a story, how the salaryman(Tanya) doesn't believe in God(Mr.X) and this last refuses the fact that she/he doesn't believe in religion. You get to see some stuff that happened in the war, as well as some fiction, which is phenomenal. You get to see how anger can lead to anything in this world, which is pretty much true. IMO, i seriously
loved it, but felt confused at the beginning, obviously understood most of the story at episode 2. Also, that ending though, the tease for a second season is too much.
The art is just beautiful, pleasing to watch/see, backgrounds and landscapes were exquisite, the desings of the characters were so good, althought they were not as close as the LN or the manga, but the resemble was still there and it was beautifully made. Sometimes they used CGI, but barely noticeable and acceptable in any way.
This is what i loved the most to be honest. The background music, the sounds of the guns and everything related to the war, the voice acting, the opening, the ending, everything was spectacular. But the complain i have, is that they seemed to not have that many people for voice acting as the person doing the "Radio Command" was also used in a lot of filler people.
What can i say. Character development for lots, for every single character. How they behave, how do they get angry or happy, their likings, their emotions and expressions. Althought the story centers on Tanya, they did take the time to show the development of all the characters. (This excluding the deity called Mr.X)
First 7 episodes, i gave the show a 8 for enjoyment, it was missing some points here and there but nothing from the other world. But these last episodes have been more than fantastic and i really enjoyed every single second of them.
As you see, i quite loved the show. You are free to disagree or agree, i don't really care. As always, pardon me for being redundant at times or any grammar error.
Forward: As of writing this review, I am roughly 5 episodes in, and I'm fresh from watching it, ergo I haven't had all the time necessary for all of the "Refrigerator Logic" to make itself apparent yet. This is also my first review on MAL. Keep this in mind.
Youjo Senki has to be one of the biggest surprises of the season, coming from an entirely new studio and having one of the most idiotic-sounding concepts in recent memory. However, Studio NUT has come out swinging with some fine work, and the story itself becomes far more impressive with context.
/ Characters: 7
Perhaps the most surprising thing about this show so far is how strong its story has been, especially in the second and third episodes. As is often the case, however, the plot summary does it no justice, and is especially bad, considering the show's outlandish concept. The actual story is somewhat reminiscent of Odysseus's struggles with Poseidon, with a god putting the main character through trial after trial to prove the value a god has to a man. It's quite an interesting argument, and one that hasn't reared its head in a while, as far as I'm aware.
Tanya's character is far from the sympathetic protagonist, however. She's cold, calculating, manipulative, and absolutely ruthless. Not only that, but it becomes clear that her one-track mind has led her to a state of somewhat questionable sanity, without care for human suffering or emotion, and much less anything resembling mercy. Everything is a means to an end.
The deity she so offended, the looming presence that is "Being X," is, interestingly enough, much more the sympathetic entity. While it's unclear whether X is a male, female, singular entity, or even possibly a collective, it appears to be an ultimately benign existence, happily handing out miracles and asking for nothing more than belief in it. For those interested in the religious aspects of the story, it takes a fairly neutral stance, incorporating aspects of several major religions. Agnostics probably won't be bothered, but I could see this being a potential turn-off for a hardcore atheist.
The rest of the characters, though, were rather lackluster. This may be due to the fact that the story is still going, and they just haven't had time to develop yet, but very few of them seem to be relevant, and I'd even go so far as to say that many of those who are exist mainly as a foil for Tanya. While this has built her character exceptionally well, and she's certainly interesting enough to hold the spotlight by herself, the presently weak supporting cast is one of the few things I feel is holding this show back.
I do really like how the rest of the world responds to Tanya, however, albeit I do find a few encounters to be excessive or over-dramatic. I definitely like how, for the most part, everyone just rolls with it after she shows her worth, which really speaks for itself. But, the thing this show really lacks is a peer for Tanya, someone near her level. Being X sorta fills this role, but its participation is limited, and Viktoriya, while she may be a good counterweight, really can't do more than be the audience's surrogate.
Art: 10 / Sound: 7
I'm not going to say it's perfect, but it blows all reasonable expectations out of the water. At first glance, it may look unbalanced and garish, but it's an easily acquired taste, and one that fits the story very, very well. Studio Nut also does exceptionally well with the good old Crazy Face. I haven't been this impressed with the animation of a single body part since the creepy hand movements in Konosuba. The eyes, the mouth, the brows, they all move so well and contort in such beautifully horrifying ways that it's hard to fault it here. At all. The combat could be more fluid, and there are a few scenes that had a bit of noticeable weirdness. That said, the animation looked far better than I expected, and some aspects, particularly the eyes, were nothing short of amazing.
The sound, meanwhile, performed exactly on-par with expectation. There are some nice bits, like the sounds of the artillery, but even they could be a good bit better. The voice work sounded rather good while I was reading the subtitles, but, well, that says about all it should. It's hard to say much, good or bad, about voice acting if you don't know the language it's in. Emotion was conveyed well enough to pick up on, but that's really all I can say. Some might find Tanya's voice annoying, I suppose, but it doesn't bother me. Altogether, in the sound department, there's nothing bad to say, but there's not much to write home about, either.
This show gave me what I wanted and then about a truckload more. What else can I say? It has its faults, but they don't have much presence, and almost none of them distract from the story. There's really not higher praise you can give to a show in this area. Nothing is flawless, and flaws really don't matter in the first place insofar as the audience is given enough reason to overlook them. Youjo Senki definitely does that. This is one of the most unique stories I've every reason to say that I am beyond impressed with it. This show really is something special, and so far it's only getting better.
Usually when I see a loli on the anime poster, I would expect cuteness overload out of the anime, even if it's about war or those gritty things, as apparent in "Girls und Panzer" and "Gakkougurashi!". But this show is completely different. From the first episode, you are treated with a psychotic smile, from the one and only loli--Tanya. Tanya is certainly one of the more interesting characters I have seen from this season. As you are watching this series, you travel through the trials and tribulations of a god denying girl, and her wish for a better life. I say it's really an enjoyable
ride. The show really gets into the Tanya's thoughts, her motivations and reasons. I also like how the show handles it's tone: it's dark and horrid, but there's also these short breaks where it allows the viewers to experience light-hearted humor. This makes the characters feel really human. I have watched 4 episodes so far and I think that this is a must-watch of this season.
The diabolical ball of joy that is Tanya, see as she reins in the very heart of the skies as she battles for the "GLORY TO THE FATHERLAND".
I wish this was a game like Valkyrie chronicles, its so good...
I was entertained as she used nothing but wit and the good graces of god of war to rise threw the ranks, to become a feared as well as well respected solider. what really intrigued me the most of all while watching this very strongly narrative driven ensemble of amazing characters, was here sheer genius and ingenuity, is her countless conversations displaying a high level of intellect.
is simply "delicious"
It was a joy to watch as a rag-tag cast of characters slowly meshed together in the fires of war, ah, so sweet, ah, so exquisitely delectable, what a fine meal, this 12-part anime was.
It takes more than a keen mind to flow threw the politics of war on and off the battle filed, it becomes naught but a tribute, a testing ground to the greater question that races threw, many an intellects mind, upon examining the human condition.
I was surprised by this anime, I didn't expect too much, but wow, just... WOW.
This anime is just a flat 10 for me, it's just brilliant. I already loved history and specially WWII and I've played for more than 200 hours to Hearts of Iron IV, so this anime was just perfect for me. I love how they tell two stories at once, one about the protagonist (who is the villain and ofc perfectly done) and the story about the world where the protagonist is. Both are interesting and the one about the world is kinda based in our history, it's like an alternative WWII
with magic. Art is a little strange, but as we all know strange doesnt mean bad, it is a great way to get those expressions of pure insanity the protagonist has. The music is brilliant too, I prefer the ending song over the opening one but still, both are great. Animation in fights is great (and epic af).
This was a pretty pleasant surprise, I usually think even the best animes often have a down side that I don't like that much, but this anime doesn't, it's just perfect. I love it so much.