The new series will again focus on Corticarte, but it will tie into Ichiro Sakaki and Noboru Kannatsuki's Shinkyoku Sōkai Polyphonica crimson S light novel adaptation, which are set during the Academy years of the storyline.
It's highly ironic that my most recent review was for Sakura Taisen: Gouka Kenran. At first it may seem that the two shows have very little in common aside from involving the supernatural and artistic performances. This isn't where the similarity ends though, as both Gouka Kenran and Shinkyoku Soukai Polyphonica Crimson S suffer from almost exactly the same problems, and for almost identical reasons.
The first series followed the lives of the employees of the Tsuge Divine Music Players Office, in particular, Tatara Phoron and his contracted spirit Corticarte Apa Lagranges (Corti). Crimson S, on the other hand, sets out to show how Phoron and
Corti became partners, with much hi-jinx and shenanigans from evil musicians and school bullies along the way.
At first glance it appears as though this is nothing more than a prequel to the first series and, for the most part, this would be a fair assessment. Unfotunately, there are some deviations that occur in Crimson S that openly contradict some of the events from the first anime, one of which is Phoron and Corti's first meeting with the Yugiri twins (Perserte and Prinesca). The first series very clearly shows their first encounter to be at Tsuge's offices, however Crimson S has them being school friends.
This isn't the only time Crimson S plays fast and loose with the story, and the reason for these deviations is beause this series is meant to enhance and develop the characters. One of the main issues with the first season was that the characters were transparent for the most part, with no basis for their thoughts, actions or ideals. Crimson S is an attempt to rectify this, and make the first series more accessable and understandable to viewers.
If this is the desired outcome, then why on earth did Ocelot make the same mistake that Red Entertainment and Sega made with Gouka Kenran? Why, when Ging-ya did a decent job with the first season and have experience with the characters, animation and sound, did they change production companies?
In all honesty, I have nothing against Diomedea, Lantis or Magic Capsule, as they have done some great work in their respective fields. However it is well known that for a sequel or prequel to be both acceptable and well made there needs to be consistency between the series. The original Polyphonica anime suffered from a lack of cohesiveness on it's own, but Crimson S only compounds those flaws by attempting to give it's own spin on events. Ultimately, the fault lies with the screenplay writers and the director, Suzuki Toshimasa, as the inconsistencies between the two series only serve to spoil both, and the plot for the series suffers from various flaws, including an overuse of deus ex machina
As far as the animation and design goes, there's a jarring lack of detail at times, together with an oversimplified, almost childlike, depiction of certain areas of the city (very much like Gouka Kenran). The change of studios has affected the design of the characters to a degree as well, and in all honesty I prefer the facial expressions used in the first series as Crimson S seems to try a little too hard on that front.
Other than those, and a few other niggly little points, there's really little to complain about. This is a solidly made series that isn't overly creative, even though it may seem that way at first.
In terms of sound, there's also little to complain about. The music and effects are decent, but a little on the plain side. I have to admit that I found the first season to be a tad more atmospheric aurally, and the music had a little more flair to it than Crimson S. One of the problems with the music throughout both series though, is the tendency for repetition, and with both being musically based shows, this becomes irritating at times.
On the plus side though, and like Gouka Kenran, Crimson S has retained the services of the seiyuu from the first series and, for the most part, the voice acting is reasonably good. Unfortunately (you knew that word was coming, didn't you), the fact that this is supposed to be a prequel seems to have caused some of the actors a degree of confusion from time to time.
The characters are, for want of a better word, odd. Within the context of the series they work reasonably well, but those of us who have watched the first series will note that there are some inconsistencies in their actions, thoughts and ideals. Now, one could easily explain these away by claiming that "other things happened" between the two series, but without knowing what they were, the viewer is left with characters who will sometimes do or say something "odd".
However, it's to the credit of the series that it has attempted to develop the characters in a consistent manner (something that was lacking in series one), but even this only really applies to Phoron and Corti as the minor characters are all but shunted to one side. There are some nods at developing the Yugiri twins et al, but this feels out of place with the flow of the story.
One other point to be mentioned is that Phoron, as a character, is actually better in the first series. In Crimson S he is far too nice for his own good and, while that may not be a bad thing for a character, it's taken to the extent that he becomes unbelievable.
Of the two series, I have to admit that while Crimson S had it's good points, I prefer series one. The problem with Crimson S is that the change of studios altered the feel and flow of the story and, like Gouka Kenran, the new director has tried to stamp his mark on the show. It's more than a litte disappointing as Crimson S had the potential to lift the series, but in truth it turned out to be a rather lacklustre affair.
Don't get me wrong. The series as a whole isn't bad. It just lacks the flair and creativity of the original, which is unfortunate as Crimson S really needed that shot in the arm.
It's a decent effort but, like Sakura Taisen: Gouka Kenran, it doesn't quite live up to expectations.
For me this was an up and down show. It had great moments and then it had the terribly boring moments. The battles in this show were ok but the final battle, forget it. Yea one little shocking thing but it all lasted about oh ... 4 seconds.
The music was great especially the primary song sung at the begginging and the end. The violins were also my favorite.
There was only one character in this show with comic reliefe. It kept things relaxed at times but some of it was a bit dry.
Overall it is not bad, but I would not call it good either.
Shinkyoku Soukai Polyphonica S was a surprising anime to me. I mean normally fantasy and music doesn't mix well together, but I feel like this show did it right.
At first the story may be seem like a typical school that takes place in a fantasy world, but eventually, this story develops into a love story between Phoron and Corti. Which I really enjoyed. I give the story an 8
The show has surprisingly good art considering the time it came out. Every character has a unique look to them even the Yugiri twins have their own distinct look to them but I
won't dare spoil why. Overall I'd give the art a 9
One of the best things in this show would have to be the sound. I mean it's a music based anime so you'd except some pretty awesome ost's. Topped off by the opening phosphorous and the ending koi no uta I'd give the sound a ten.
The characters in this show were pretty interesting. While i liked characters like Corti and Renbart I couldn't help but find Phoron kinda passive and Perserte annoying. I give the characters a 7.
I give this anime an 8 for enjoyment since it has most of the things i like in an anime