Jan 12, 2018
Doltra (All reviews)
Something that for some reason does really make me frustrated, is well-done job that could have been even better with just a little more effort and common sense (call me a perfectionist if you want). This series is an example of what I'm talking about.

Scrapped Princess presents an outstanding setting and plot, mixing both fantasy and sci-fiction in such a harmonic manner (as the writer Arthur Clarke says in one of his laws: any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic). The way in which the medieval scenario gradually turns into a post-apocalyptic world really gives a particular, immersive and surprising atmosphere to the show, being that accompanied by a complex and deep questioning that becomes the focus of the plot: Should people be free to make their own decisions, even if they could harm themselves? Or should they be protected from the risk of destruction, even at the cost of taking away their freedom and keep them into ignorance? This issue invites the viewer to meditate through the reflecting that the very characters perform.

As for what respects to these characters, practically all the cast is remarkably well designed. They have properly defined personalities, their own motivations, have dinamic and organic interactions, and do make the plot to keep moving in the right direction. Practically all of the cast... except for a couple exceptions. One of them: the protagonist. On one hand, Pacifica's personality does fit to the philosophical approach of the story, since her spoiled, carefree and passive attitude is frequently criticized by other characters, and she actually deliberates about the rightness or wrongness with her behaviour and with some of the events that sorround her path. The problem is that, despite all this pondering, she takes her passiveness to the extreme, literally making no decisions and doing nothing significant (at least not voluntarily) until the very conclusion. Damn, more than not being interested in her sorroundings, sometimes it looks like she has some kind of autism since she doesn't seem to figure out a lot of what's happening around her, even when told explicitly by other characters; the protagonist being this bland is truly a blow below the belt for the series. Then there's also one character that only appears for an unnecessary arc as an important individual in more than one sense, and once this couple of episodes are over, not only you don't see him anymore but also he didn't serve any long term purpose. I had to highlight this because, although this is a personal approach, he looked like a simple tool for mommentary emotional manipulation.

The aforementioned arc isn't the only flaw on the storytelling, though. Even if the passing is really good and most events happen in a surprising, yet coherent and catchy way, several minor holes acumulate until they get weighty. Some things are never explained while in counterpart many issues are exposed with excessive detail and in several times, which can make the narrative dense at some points. These matters make, along with Pacifica, an actual Achilles' heel that deprives Scrapped Princess to reach its full potential (which, in case I didn't manage to make my point until now, was huge).

In compensation for the previously mentioned, everything referred to the artwork is just impressive for the time this series was aired. Animation has a great use of colour for every situation, a truly high level of detail (both for characters and for environments and backgrounds) and action is performed very well. As for the soundtrack, it is in my opinion, one of the best I have ever heard. Every track has a lot of strenght and fits perfectly every scene, making drama and action really intentse and also contributing to the series' identity.

With a better execution, it could have reached way more than 7/10.