Reviews

Mar 8, 2015
Lumpymeister (All reviews)
Preliminary
What is it that people enjoy about watching anime? This is of course a trite question since there are so many different personal opinions. Some people enjoy the Harem genre for its approach to comedy, romance and delectable human figures. Other people enjoy Shonen for the action, excitement and spiky haired protagonists. This will usually make writing reviews kind of pointless, since people's likes and dislikes will always overcome the "objective" factors such as quality of characters, depth of story or speed of pacing. The only thing that an anime can really be judged on is its focus, meaning what it tries to accomplish, whether it's the insane action and visuals of Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann or the ocean deep story of Gankutsuou The Count of Monte Cristo. It is what creates personal opinions. I would not say that Hikaru No Go is better than Bokurano, but rather that they focus on completely different things that appeal to different people. So what does this have to do with Cardfight Vanguard G?
The Vanguard anime series has not been anything magnificent so far. It's been a neat series with some fun characters, an interesting card game and an easily understandable plot. Storywise it has always lacked depth and the characters have been fairly generic (at least for those who watched beyblade as a kid). But this has always gone well with what I interpret as the focus of the series, fun. The animation is bright and colorful, the atmosphere is very comfortable and the card game is well presented. I liken it in some ways to Lucky Star, which was never supposed to be viewed as an incredible deep show. Regardless of objective quality of the Vanguard series I still have fun with it, or at least the first two seasons.

Cardfight Vanguard G on the other hand seems to have no idea of what it's focus is supposed to be. Since its called Cardfight Vanguard it needs to have the card game aspect, but they are no longer full games. If you have watched Dual Masters then you know what I am talking about. They only show you highlights rather than full games, which means that the viewer has no concept of the strategy or complexity involved. The "action" part of the anime becomes to simple and feels underdeveloped.

They allocate a lot more time to characters and interaction, but as I establised earlier, the Vanguard series has never had particularly complex characters worth all of this interaction. All of the protagonists are generic good guys with slight differences. Our main Character Shindou Chrono is the mean looking but nice on the inside guy. The secondary tier inclues the mary sue Shion Kiba and the girl Tokoha Anjou. You have seen these characters in tens if not hundreds of animes, movies and video games before. They are predictable both in action and in development and makes the "slice of life" part of the anime boring.

At the time of writing, Cardfight Vanguard G is 19 episodes in and nothing of note has yet to happen. There has been no major tournaments and no big character development. It's kind of like the first season of Yu Gi Oh GX, where the only thing it did was establish the characters. You could argue that it`s the same with G but, as I established earlier, the characters are not complex enough to carry a show on their own without the card game. 19 episodes of what is basically a combination of introduction and filler is an awful way of starting a series. Even if G followed up with 200 great episodes after that it does not make up for the fact that you need to get through 19 episodes of mediocre slough, and this makes the "story" part of the anime drawn out and unnecessary.

Still this is all just my personal opinion. There still seems to be people who do enjoy the series so it would be exceptionally narcissistic to think of my opinion as the only right one. The colorful animation, comfortable atmosphere and likeable, yet generic, characters makes it understandably enjoyable depending on who watches. Personally I need a little more meat in order to fully enjoy a series, but perhaps this is a result of having watched so many anime. I would really only recommend this series to anime newbies, fans of bright and comforting shows or people who are nostalgic for the earlier seasons of Vanguard.