Apr 14, 2010
manley377 (All reviews)
The first thing I’m going to say about Berserk is that you really don’t get the full effect of what you’re watching until you finish it.
It was one of the first anime I watched as an adult and at the time I was just looking for something with a bit of violence and gore but I ended up with much more than that.

The story I’m not going to talk too much about. There are a few differences between the manga and anime but the characters are the same. And it’s with the characters that this story draws you in. the first episode may have people believing its going to be shallow, nothing more than a large man ripping monsters to bits. Watch beyond it. After I watched it I wanted to know others opinions on it, so I started reading up on it on review sites. What I found was a lot of reviewers saying how they regretted giving up on it after the first few episodes and leaving it so long before they gave it the chance it deserved.

I’ll try to provide some insight into the story without giving away too much. Its set during a sort of medieval setting, with kingdoms at war and mercenaries for hire to do battle. This story follows a group of such mercenaries known as the Band of the Hawk. They are led by an ambitious man called Griffith. A leader so charismatic that those who join the band of the hawk become swept up in his ambitions, his crew admire him and want him to realise his dream. Joining Griffiths army is the protagonist Guts. Griffith and Guts develop a sorta bromance (wish I didn’t have to use that word) with Guts not only becoming Griffiths best general but one of the few people Griffith respect almost equally. There relationship is hard to explain without me writing pages about the characters. Basically the anime is a series of skirmishes between armies and some politics, all of which are just set pieces to strengthen the bond between the Band of the Hawks. Until Guts leaves the Hawks, to try and make himself someone who isn’t just following another mans dreams but has dreams of their own. His departure causes consequences for the Hawks that couldn’t be foreseen. Resulting in ending that hits you because you cared what happened to these characters.

Each of the lead characters were fleshed out by how they grew to care for each other and how its revealed the ways they ended up joining and respecting Griffith.

The art style in the anime suits the setting and character perfectly. Its well animated most of the time with it occasionally going into a still painting effect. The first time I saw it do this it bothered me but then it became part of the atmosphere and somewhat appropriate.
I watched the dub and felt that all the actors did their roles well, their voices appropriate for their characters. Some of the music was fantastic, actually above the bar of what I had expected for this series.

About halfway through this review I realised how long it was getting so I’ll stop now and just say that if it ever gets continued that I hope the company that does it keeps it as similar to this as possible. I would love for it to continue and it to seem like it had never ended in the first place.