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Black Rock Shooter – 01 »

Black Rock Shooter – OVA

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I’m admittedly not a big fan of the Hatsune Miku nor vocaloids in general, but when supercell‘s illustrator Huke designs an original character named “Black Rock Shooter”, composer Ryo writes a song titled after her for Miku to sing, and everyone can barely contain themselves after learning that a 50-min OVA was going to be made, it felt like I was going to start getting death threats if I didn’t blog about it. That’s an exaggeration of course, but the popularity behind “BRS” sure as hell doesn’t seem like one within the Nico Nico Douga circle of fans. To date, the music video has over 3.3 million views and 170 thousand comments. Personally, I’m not that keen on the song itself in comparison to some of supercell’s other works (e.g. Bakemonogatari‘s “Kimi no Shiranai Monogatari”), but just in case anyone hasn’t seen the 2008 music video that started it all, please see below.

Show Black Rock Shooter Music Video ▼

If you aren’t a die-hard fan or simply not familiar with the BRS craze, then it might be somewhat difficult to grasp exactly why this video led to this long-awaited OVA two years later. I wouldn’t sweat it though, since I’m sort of familiar with the craze and I still don’t quite understand exactly how it got as big as it did. It’s never all that clear what will become extremely popular, but there’s evidently a lot of appeal in an extremely slender, fiery blue-eyed, twin-tails girl in nothing more than a black bikini top, hot pants, and a long cloak when she wields a katana and a huge transforming cannon/sword and can kick ass with it. In a way, she fits the “sexy girl kicking ass” stereotype, who targets the pettanko niche as well with her revealing outfit. What’s important to note is that Black Rock Shooter is not Hatsune Miku, but a completely different character designed by Huke. There probably are some hardcore fans out there that will burn you at the stake for making that mistake, even though it’s an honest one to make when Hatsune Miku is sometimes shown cosplaying as BRS. In any case, we have an original character who soared to popularity with a supercell song sung by Hatsune Miku, leaving fans thirsty for some sort of anime about her. I dare even say it didn’t really even matter exactly what it’s about as long as they got to see one of their favorite characters looking sexy and cool at the same time.

Stepping up to the task was former Kyoto Animation employee, production director of Suzumiya Haruhi, and choreographer for its ridiculously popular ending sequence “Hare Hare Yukai”, Yamamoto Yutaka. Some may recall how “Yamakan” was fired from KyoAni after directing only four episodes of Lucky Star, after which he went on to found his own studio called Ordet. Since its creation in 2007, Ordet has only provided production assistance thus far, with Kannagi being their most notable work to date since Yamakan directed it as well. With Black Rock Shooter, it marks the first time the studio’s headed the production of a project. Objectively speaking, this OVA doesn’t look bad by any means, but it isn’t exactly anything to write home about either. Ordet seems capable, but being a very small company of only ten or so employees with roughly three million yen of capital, one’s expectations naturally need to be aligned accordingly. Quite honestly, I found it more than sufficient in helping realize fans’ desire to see BRS brought to the life in an anime. The only thing needed was some sort of story to tie things together in some form, which they provided some resemblance of a plot to wrap around the Black Rock Shooter fan-service action.

For that, Yamakan went to another former Kyoto Animation employee, Yoshioka Shinobu, to both direct and write the script for the OVA, while he himself served as a supervising director for the project. Surprisingly, he also enlisted the help of Suzumiya Haruhi’s creator Tanigawa Nagaru to work with Shinobu in writing the script, which is likely due to their collaboration work for the anime. All that really translates to is having a couple of key guys related to Suzumiya Haruhi on board with this one, which is reassuring in a way if nothing else. The story they came up with involves two middle school girls, Kuroi Mato (Hanazawa Kana) and Takanashi Yomi (Sawashiro Miyuki), who become very close friends upon entering their new school. Over the course of the 50-minute run, an entire school year actually lapses to drive that point home, during which Mato joins the basketball club while Yomi joins the volleyball one. To put a contrasting personality spin on it, Yomi is somewhat of a refined girl who comes from a wealthy family and has spent time in Germany, whereas Muto is a bit more spirited and carefree and the one that initiates most of the conversation.

I can’t say I’m the least bit surprised that they decided to go with the school life premise, but in reality it mostly served as something to balance out all the dialogue-less fighting between Black Rock Shooter and Dead Master in some alternate world that the scenes kept switching to. I originally meant it as a joke that there needed to be some resemblance of a plot to make this work as an anime, so it was kind of funny how they actually went so far as to literally interleave one. If we were to just take all the scenes between Mato and Yomi, this was more or less a very uneventful middle school anime that finally got some drama when Yomi grew jealous of how well Mato was getting along with her classmate and basketball manager Yuu (Asumi Kana) and suddenly went missing afterward. If we were to take all the scenes between Black Rock Shooter and Dead Master on the other hand, this would have been what everyone really wanted to see from this OVA. The problem is, the second option is completely devoid of plot and is just there to serve as pure eye candy. I don’t think anyone would have minded if they made a story out of that world alone, but I do find this unique approach of overlaying a 24-minute episode about one world on top of a 24-minute episode of another one intriguing. I didn’t go as far as timing the actual duration of the scenes, but that’s how this 50-minute OVA came off to me.

Of course, it wasn’t all for naught, since the connection was made between the two concurrent stories to help explain Yomi’s disappearance and why Black Rock Shooter kept extending her hand out to Dead Master. However, other than confirming that Mato and Black Rock Shooter are indeed one in the same like everyone likely concluded from the very beginning, not a whole lot was explained on why she has such an alter ego. In fact, nothing was delved into this alternate world at all, nor exactly how Yomi’s feelings of jealousy caused her to become Dead Master. What it did reiterate is that Black Rock Shooter is trying to save the person from such a fate, and apparently failed to do so in another girl’s case. If nothing else, the story did manage to establish that premise, before leaving off with Yuu succumbing to those same feelings of jealousy upon Yomi’s return. Her alter ego didn’t have much of a role here, but the door is left open for some sort of continuation involving her. Whether or not we’ll actually see one is another matter, but this OVA delivered what everyone was looking for — a Black Rock Shooter anime.

July 25, 2010 at 1:23 am
98 comments »
  • July 25, 2010 at 1:29 amgnomtastic

    bricks

  • July 25, 2010 at 1:29 amRitsu

    Ooh, this is out? I can’t wait to see it!

  • July 25, 2010 at 1:48 amfall3nbs

    I’m not really familiar with the whole Miku Hatsune craze either, but when I saw and heard about this, I got really curious. The blue and black color tones look real neat and are eye catching.

    • July 25, 2010 at 5:38 amMiria

      Neither I, actually I can’t stand her VOICE, but BLACK ROCK SHOOTER ROCKS!

      • July 28, 2010 at 6:06 amyamada

        That’s Kana Hanazawa as Kuroi Mato/BRS

    • July 27, 2010 at 12:48 amEspada

      shes not miku and not related to miku…

    • July 27, 2010 at 10:31 amZakalia

      im not familiar with the Miku craze either, but i saw this and was curious. I watched it today and was pleasantly surprised, really enjoyed it :)

  • July 25, 2010 at 1:49 amlHyDrAl

    Finally, been waiting so long after so many delays. Hope it lives up to expectations!

  • July 25, 2010 at 1:49 amaxo5000

    ehhh this was ok i was expecting more action due to the teasers and trailers theve been showing. I was kind of hoping that this would be more than one episode to perhaps flesh out the story a little better, but i guess its better than nothing

  • July 25, 2010 at 1:50 amCroosboy

    whats the story about. anyway looks interesting

    • July 25, 2010 at 1:59 amaxo5000

      theres not really much of a ‘solid’ story to say but from what i got out of it was that the main girl makes a friend, they become close, her friend gets jealous of her because she sees her(main character) becoming close with someone else. While this is happening, in a different dimension the girls’ persona’s (i mean that as alternate versions of themselves) duke it out and stuff happens

  • July 25, 2010 at 1:57 ambaka~

    story-wise, quite a disappointment, probably the director’s fault? but animation-wise, everything was well done.

    • July 25, 2010 at 8:54 amEien_86

      You are in idiot sir, you watch something that u haven’t any rights to watch in the first place, so STFU at least damn downloader.

      • July 25, 2010 at 10:44 amkyo

        That is what I call shitty rudeness ^^^ It’s called ‘imo’ NOT ‘in everyone’s opinion’

      • July 25, 2010 at 4:50 pmNanjo

        Anyone has the right to state their own opinion even if you obtained that video legally or illegally. The person is entitled to express their opinion because s/he has watched it. You’re just being a total douche about people downloading anime. Don’t get the hype for this OVA, I find the story to this OVA predicable through what the preview/screen shot showed. For something people waited 2 years for, its a big disappointment. Seriously anime studio should just leave anything hatsune miku alone. This is just my opinion

      • July 26, 2010 at 4:26 pmAeonax

        I love how you made a typo right before calling someone an idiot. Talk about irony.

        And besides, since when does downloading something which isn’t available in his/her area, make them have no rights to say something about it?

        Idiot.

  • July 25, 2010 at 1:59 amItAintEazy

    All I’m thinking is “I spent an hour watching this shit?”

    • July 25, 2010 at 2:01 amaxo5000

      Lol yea i sort of felt let down, I was really looking forward to this due to the awesome ass trailers ive watched.

  • July 25, 2010 at 2:01 ampagan poor

    Haven’t watched the episode yet, but I’m not a big vocaloid fan either. However I am looking forward to supercell’s next efforts with nagi due out next month as a “double single”.

  • July 25, 2010 at 2:01 amSyllen

    it was disappointing
    As for yomi being dead master, i think she got possessed and not really an alter-ego, same with mato

  • July 25, 2010 at 2:06 amtheburntshadow

    I’ve been hearing a lot of this, so I might as well check it out.

  • July 25, 2010 at 2:37 amquestionmark

    … I was very bored watching this. I also laughed when the girl said she was Black Rock Shooter. I found that hilarious. I just made a joke about how she might say it and then I am… BLACK ROCK SHOOTER. I was also hoping to hear the song, not its instrumental.

  • July 25, 2010 at 2:40 amKING OF NIGERIA

    I hope that this is just one extra long pilot, because that’s what it felt like.

  • July 25, 2010 at 2:44 amRibbit

    I thought the animation could have used some work.

  • July 25, 2010 at 2:45 amFalcen

    I almost ripped my hair out.

    I really hope they make another part or something.

    It really could have been intelligent. It would have been great if the whole fight sequence with Dead Master was like a metaphor for Mato battling her guilt or something.

    Or perhaps it is? EXPLAIN OVA! EXPLAIN!

    • July 25, 2010 at 11:06 amW.Wolf

      my thoughts exactly when I got to the end. What the hell just happened and why couldn’t they tell me over the course of a freaking hour?

  • July 25, 2010 at 2:45 amJaysus

    So much hype… yet sooooooo mediocre. Give me back the hour I wasted plz.

    It’s was like Casshern Sins meets generic school girl anime… but not in a good way.

    • July 25, 2010 at 2:54 amJaysus

      *It was

      Bah… my brain’s not functioning this early in the morning.

  • July 25, 2010 at 2:49 amentropy

    “Combining” the two who’s fighting at the start is apparently needed to beat the white-haired girl, simply known as S.T.R.

    With THAT ending it would be a very big disappointment if there weren’t any more OVAs for BRS.

  • July 25, 2010 at 3:06 amRei

    Animation fantastic, but was looking forward to MORE. Loved the storyline and all – the piano in the melancholic segments really hit me, why so sad? SO MUCH FRIENDSHIP, THEN FRIENDSHIP BEAKS ALONG WITH MY HEART. I loved the art though and what action there was it was fantastic. But wow, BRS kept hitting the floor D8 she kept kinda losing? lol but then aww reaching out ;_;
    Soemwhat disappointing, since I was expecting more action, but loved the voices and striking animation.

  • July 25, 2010 at 3:16 amDanchou

    The characters were nicely done, but the story wasn’t as good as it should have been.

  • July 25, 2010 at 3:57 amBlueEyedReaper

    Kana Hanazawa rock! I want more Black Gold Saw! The animation was NICE!

    But I want more action though ~.~

    More action . . .

  • July 25, 2010 at 4:57 amSiege

    I thought this OVA was ok, but it felt that their wasn’t enough action because of the switches between school life and that other world.

  • July 25, 2010 at 5:01 amSomeKindaNick

    WHAT?! WHERE’s Black rocks cool bike and the meido and the girl samurai and that big guy and the evil robots??!!! And there’s an awful few number of shots of Black Rock Shooter’s world from all that you took!!
    Regardless of plot Im already disappointed… The CG vid just seems better…
    Especially since both dosen’t seem to have a plot anyway from what you said. I mean, why make that whole parallel world thing if they arn’t even gonna add plot to the whole “black rock shooter fights her supposed friend\lover in order to save her from darkness” that already existed?

    • July 25, 2010 at 7:30 amPronas

      The anime is like this, 20 seconds of BRS and then 5 minutes of middle school girl. The two worlds only got tied in the end where the middle school girl “fuses” with BRS. They never explain anything about BRS’s world. It’s like they got a movie and put some parts of another movie in the middle.

  • July 25, 2010 at 5:16 amKWeng

    the story wasn’t so nice..
    action is pretty ok i guess , but the ending there after mato found the star thingy..
    she so fast win…-_-”

  • July 25, 2010 at 7:02 amKhan

    Sorry to nitpick Divine, but you made a small error. Yamakan was not the director of Haruhi, although he did direct a few episodes.

    As for the OVA, it was fine. The animation was actually pretty well done, but the stylistic choice was pretty annoying. They went with a ‘choppy’ look that made the whole thing a bit jarring and caused it to look cheaper to produce than it actually was.

    • July 25, 2010 at 2:46 pmDivine

      Right, he was the production director of the entire series alongside Ishihara Tatsuya. Anyway, I’ve added that distinction in my post.

  • July 25, 2010 at 7:17 amK

    The OVA was pretty much just eyecandy promotion to tide people over until the anime comes out. I kind of get where they’re going with the plot, so I’m okay with it. The action can get a bit weird looking, though; for example, it made no sense to completely ignore logic in the first fighting scene (where they keep flying at each other without any way of doing so) but then make the rest of the fights somewhat physically logical. But well, as long as you think of this as some twisted magical girl show, it’s okay.

    It’s like the only thing Yamakan knows how to direct anyways, magical girl shows.

    • July 28, 2010 at 3:45 amAnjiro

      Ehh, I think a lot of ‘action’ anime defies logic at some point. Besides, doesn’t those alternate egos/alternate world defy logic already? How realistic can you get with that? Especially the part where Black Rock Shooter appears to Mato floating in the air after the cellphone charm started shining brightly? Yea… XD

  • July 25, 2010 at 7:22 amShirt

    Damn that was some good writing.. I love this blog~

    I’ve heard the name before bit never looked into in it. Funny, I can’t ignore it now. Those hot pants with the cape and Vocaloid-look sold me. I’ll have to go back and watch that video to learn more. That’s pretty cool though how a bunch of ex-Ani’s made this. ( lol oni ) I think they made a nice big stinker on KyoAni’s desk saying I’m still the the hot shnit.. Desu!

    Definitelygotta watch this today. Thanks for the post. Never woulda knew about it otherwise. :]

  • July 25, 2010 at 7:55 amjoshua

    Divine,

    If you really aren’t feeling a certain series or OVA don’t blog about it. I’m sure none of your many fans want you in any way to feel forced or obligated to blog about something based purely on how popular it is.

    That said, I’m glad to see a writeup on this. :)

    • July 25, 2010 at 2:49 pmDivine

      I wasn’t that keen on it originally, but when I saw Hanazawa Kana, Sawashiro Miyuki, and Asumi Kana in the cast, I couldn’t ignore it.

  • July 25, 2010 at 8:34 amSyNc

    Devine,
    So after releasing this OVA, is there a anime coming out?

    • July 25, 2010 at 2:50 pmDivine

      I haven’t heard anything about an anime series one way or the other to be honest.

  • July 25, 2010 at 8:48 amakani

    BLAAAACK ROCK SHOOOOTER DOKO E ITTA NOOOO KIKOEMASU KAAAAAAAAA

    I was really looking forward to this. It’s a slight disappointment in the plot but I think the animation is excellent.

    It would have been better if, say, it kept Mato and Yomi becoming best friends and drifting apart but then we see an evil spirit possess Yomi and manipulate her feelings, whispering in her ear that Mato doesn’t care about her anymore, that she was used, thrown away, and forgotten. She is given power and uses it to destroy the world out of anger and jealousy. Then we see Mato who made her choice to stop Yomi train to become Black Rock Shooter and gain followers on the way like Black Gold Saw, and then finally save Yomi or be forced to kill her. That would have made more sense and gave it much more fleshed out story.

    Then again, that would require at least five OVA’s…

  • July 25, 2010 at 9:22 amChris

    I really liked it, the plot could use work but this is probably a pilot to test the waters and see if its feasible to sink more money into it.

    I liked the look, feel, and of course BRS’ DFC.

  • July 25, 2010 at 10:20 amChris

    Not the same Chris as above but…Mato and Yomi…Angel Beats!’s Tenshi and Iwasawa? I like.

  • July 25, 2010 at 10:31 amMegas

    It felt like an acid trip to me but it was interesting nevertheless, atleast I managed to watch the whole thing.

  • July 25, 2010 at 10:51 amaa

    NOT AS GOOD AS I EXPECTED

    Quite disappointing actually. Good animation/action and all, but very choppy scenes and bad storytelling. Storyline’s a bit cliche too, nothing special.

    Terrible director for this one, kinda wasted the fancy animations.

  • July 25, 2010 at 11:01 amdrunkenveggie

    Finally~
    Now I can fangirl properly > <

  • July 25, 2010 at 11:14 amchloesong92

    Divine, it would be very ironic if your fans threatened to kill you. :)

  • July 25, 2010 at 11:18 amKiki

    You blogged about “Cat Shit One”, so I kind of understand you being worried about getting death threads if you didn’t blog about this, lol.

  • July 25, 2010 at 11:18 amyanipheonu

    They’re totally baiting a series with this. I thought it was good. Wasn’t super great, but it’s still the best thing I’ve seen this summer, which isn’t saying too much though.

  • July 25, 2010 at 11:48 amSora no Kaze

    So…. should I watch this while with something to drink or something, cause that’s what I’m hearing from the mix reviews. Just kidding about the drinking in all honesty, though I still need to wipe some sorrows away for onemanga going down, saved me from the period I did videogame isolation to prove to my parents I wasn’t addicted lmao.

    So is there anyone who can convince to watch/not watch this XP.

  • July 25, 2010 at 11:52 amLaN

    I really liked this. The animation, story, I thought it was good. End is sorta eh from me. I suppose it won’t matter, it will depend if they continue it. Anyways, thanks Divine!

  • July 25, 2010 at 12:07 pmIntermission

    It wasn’t that great really.
    So I was wondering if there is going to be an anime to explain all of this.

  • July 25, 2010 at 12:32 pmshirokiryuu

    It’s eye candy, I didn’t expect any more than that. (Although I’m a BRS fan because I like Huke’s art)

    It’s really an ad to sell figures from GSC, but it works, :( I shouldn’t be buying them, but I am…

  • July 25, 2010 at 1:01 pmaxo5000

    there was one thing that bothered me the most about this OVA…they never played the BRS actual song, sure they played a piano version in the background, but c’mon…it wasnt even the ending theme song wtf?

  • July 25, 2010 at 1:04 pmboingman

    Uhm, since Hatsune Miku is so popular why isn’t there a Hatsune Miku anime series?

    • July 25, 2010 at 3:27 pmakani

      I wouldn’t like a Vocaloid series because everybody intreprets the personalities of the Vocaloids differently (for example, Rin might be a cute loli or a sadistic demon bent on torturing Len). Somebody like might pairing one Vocaloid with another or one Vocaloid with somebody else. The stories of many PVs are different (ACUTE, Kokoro, IMITATION BLACK, magnet, etc.) so there wouldn’t be a basis for a story of an anime in the first place.

  • July 25, 2010 at 1:34 pmlilakou

    bah it’s my first time seeing this and it seems that’s long awaited so could any one explain to me why ?

  • July 25, 2010 at 2:39 pmSoreii

    It’s not so hard to believe that most people couldn’t grasp the meaning of the events throughout this OVA. Divine pretty much ‘summed up’ the whole thing for you guys (which is pretty much what I concluded myself after watching). As long as you enjoyed the fighting scenes, then all is (somewhat) right in the world. ;D

  • July 25, 2010 at 2:54 pmdmo

    So like, I watched this without knowing anything about it because it someone said something about it being good…it was good enough to be watchable…but I don’t understand why there was all the hype about it. The whole thing was predictable to the end and the animation was mediocre at best. Though if there’s anything good to be said about it, it’s the backgrounds and music.

  • July 25, 2010 at 3:53 pmRaiju

    I never understood the whole BRS and Vocaloids craze either; and watching that video, I still don’t understand it. XD The visuals were nice, sure, but there wasn’t much in the way of animation. BRS herself seems like your standard anime gun-toting, sword-swinging goth loli. And the music, urgh, it was like listening to chipmunks sing. I just don’t get it!

    But the animation for the OVA looks good and I’m curious to see what kind of story (if any) they can make for such a seemingly shallow character.

  • July 25, 2010 at 4:31 pmGil

    Who is the red-eye girl with the Big sword that owned the BRS protagonist?

    She’s lovely.

    • July 25, 2010 at 4:44 pmFalcen

      Black Gold Saw

    • July 26, 2010 at 3:07 amFlamingYu

      Wish for more scenes of BGS.

  • July 25, 2010 at 4:54 pminnerchihiro

    Not too familiar with Hatsune Miku or BRS either, but I actually enjoyed this. Sawashiro Miyuki and Hanazawa Kana, how is that not a win?? I just wished the ending would have been a bit more clear. How exactly did Mato find Yomi and resolve this?? Where did the real Yomi go??

  • July 25, 2010 at 5:49 pmMegan

    I thought it was alright. I liked the style of the drawings and the animation. Sadly, this show isn’t my top favorite ovas, but it was still good. I liked the story and how everything was revealed in the end. The character developement was good but wish there was more fight scenes or talking in-between instead of some scenes of walking. The enviornment was well drawn and animated dont get me wrong, but there were some parts that i thought were usless. One scene was the beginning with BRS fightning the girl in the beginning and when BRS was on top of the mountain. Anyways i still liked the OVA. I hope they make an anime series or more episodes cause of the cough cough ending. I would still like to watch the show because i like the fightning and how the characters are designed.
    Another thing i liked was the music. they did play the actually BRS song from Miku hatsune in one scene but overall the music was really good.
    Hope to see this OVA become an anime series

  • July 25, 2010 at 7:24 pmJason Isenberg

    No doubt this OVA is a clear sign of what’s to come, give it more time. Patience seems very little in most of you. I actually enjoyed it, then again…I’m always easily impressed and I felt really enveloped with the characters and how it’s set in differen’t worlds. I might have not known much about this whole hype for BRS but now that they did this, I’m very intrigued where this will go.

    • July 28, 2010 at 3:32 amAnjiro

      Exactly, I think this is what they were aiming to do. They’re generating interest by not giving the whole thing away. Kinda like cliffhangers. This episode you can say is a taste of Black Rock Shooter with a cliffhanger (in terms of explaining the alternate universe/egos and Yuu’s demeanor).

  • July 25, 2010 at 8:29 pmthenewhorde

    story aside, i’m just fully enjoying the animation personally. i had fun watching this.

  • July 25, 2010 at 10:00 pmchiyoko

    I first started listening to Vocaloids (albeit a little) in ’07. At first I was against them, simply because they lacked smoothness. But, after listening more to them and a little patience, I realized that I was being naive – completely misunderstanding them completely.

    A lot of people misinterpret the fan excitement behind the Blackrock Shooter OVA. Yes, Blackrock Shooter, on its own, is pretty awesome – but the whole idea behind Vocaloids is the spirit of creativity. It’s the possibility to create something from a medium that can be appreciated by people all over(if math is the universal language, music is its voice). It’s not to say this possibility didn’t exist before, so much as Vocaloids became a way to bridge that gap more easily. To see the fruitition of the OVA project like this, even if it took two years, is says something incredible about the nature of Vocaloids and the embrace of that creativity by the public.

    That aside, I thought it was pretty good for its length, though I wish they tied the alter-egos and explained it a little better.

  • July 25, 2010 at 10:14 pmkyuzo

    huh. i guess it was good that i watched this without any expectations or anything coz i found the whole thing quite great actually. i love how friendship played a big role in the story.

  • July 25, 2010 at 11:20 pmCommiE

    Fuck Chuck Taylor Hatsune Miku is the new face for Converse

  • July 26, 2010 at 1:40 amoOgA

    I think many people have mixed reactions of the show. The story as many have mentioned was so-so or perhaps “meh”.

    but looking at those screenshots, the visuals are definitely awesome. :D

    loving this particular screencap – http://randomc.net/image/Black%20Rock%20Shooter/Black%20Rock%20Shooter%20-%20OVA%20-%20Large%2052.jpg

  • July 26, 2010 at 2:31 amAnonymous

    It was great. And yuri. So very yuri. No complaints at all.

  • July 26, 2010 at 3:45 amActar

    It wasn’t bad. That’s it.

  • July 26, 2010 at 7:11 amjupiter-MONKeY

    lol, kyoani staff, whether they maybe ex or current staffs, like disappointing people. :)

    ‘It looks like where stuck on an endless loop.’

    anyways, the anime was meh. I expected Kana Hanazawa to use her Yuki voice from Cencoroll so that’s why I watched it. Miyuki sawashiro makes irritating noises but I love her voice acting. The story was really random. Nagaru Tanigawa wrote the script? A dog could do better, I was following the story until It got really weird. it’s like, Mato finding their friendship bracelet on the ground, then suddely seeing the BRS star, then like, meeting the actual BRS? Then the next thing you know, Yomi and Mato are hanging out again. WTF. i aughed at the epilogue. The manager becoming jealous of their friendship. haha! Next thing you know it’ll be Mato becoming jealous.

  • July 26, 2010 at 10:58 amdp

    “Whether or not we’ll actually see one is another matter, but this OVA delivered what everyone was looking for — a Black Rock Shooter anime.”

    Well, no. It delivered an anime about two school girls interspersed with all-to-brief (but well animated) scenes of Black Rock Shooter. Kind of like wanting, say, a Superman movie, only most of it is about Clark and Lois writing stories in the Daily Planet.

  • July 26, 2010 at 11:46 amKinny Riddle

    Wow. Expected it to be big, but didn’t expect it to be quite impressive.

    While I’ve only had a casual interest in BRS and only watch this due to the hype, the fact that Hanazawa Kana is voicing Mato/BRS has more of less sealed this for me as a must watch. Kana-chan just has something soothing about her moe voice which I can’t explain in words. It was the same when she was doing Kobato and Kanade from Angel Beats. Her contribution more than negates any potential boredom the non-battle-involved school scenes might bring.

    The voice of the other Kana-chan – Asumi Kana – is also recognizable, as I’ve been following quite a few series she’s in. I think I LOL’ed when she called Yomi “Takanashi”. You should be calling her “Katanashi”! XD (WORKING in-joke where Asumi starred in, in case no one gets it)

    I’m still not too familiar with Sawashiro Miyuki to be able to recognize her voice right away. But her job was satisfactory.

    As a pilot episode for an OVA, this is as good as it gets. I didn’t know beforehand many of the Haruhi crew is involved in this.

    The epilogue looked a bit confusing, so all those intersecting battle scenes were Mato/BRS trying to rescue Yomi from being possessed by DM? Then what was Yuu doing in that alternate world? Perhaps beings in that world, besides BRS, feeds on jealousy.

    Anyway, to put it simply for yuri fans – a yuri love triangle. lol

  • July 26, 2010 at 2:09 pmAnjiro

    This seems more like a setup for a series or a continuation.

    If they had explained everything (alter ego/alternate world) then there wouldn’t be many questions for you to ask. Not only that but it serves as a way for you to get interested. The more you want to know, the more you’re likely to want more of it to be shown.

    For something that may serve as introduction – it was done beautifully in my opinion. You got character development and lots of answers left to be answered that you’d probably want more.

    I may be a sentimental guy here but I actually liked the focus on friendship and jealousy. It made the story easy to relate to if you’ve ever felt that way. They also seem more human (Mato, Yomi, etc.)

    As for the alternate egos – my guess is that they have another story. Why they exist and why is it only certain girls such as Mato, Yomi, and such are able to take on those alternate egos and enter an alternate world hopefully will have an answer to. :3

    • July 26, 2010 at 10:53 pmKinny Riddle

      Well said.

      As the title didn’t have any episode numbers, I would see this as a pre-screening pilot to gauge fan reaction on what a full TV/OVA series would be like. If they had wanted to work on a one-off story, they would be better off doing a movie instead, but I understand that as a fledgling small studio, it is probably more financially feasible for Ordet to work on an OVA episode first.

      • July 28, 2010 at 3:25 amAnjiro

        Yea, that’s how it came off because it didn’t feel “complete” so to speak. If it was – they would have went all out as a one-shot story like you said. But since it didn’t end up that way – it looks like it’s just testing the waters.

        Look at the ending – Yuu seemed ominous. I mean you would have expected complete closure by the end with Yomi and Mato’s friendship being repaired but wait – why does Yuu look off?

        They can pretty much go anywhere how they want with this.

        ( Also, I actually enjoyed their approach in where things started to make sense towards the end when you piece together the scenes from the alternate world. The whole narration and explaining everything is a bit cliched. So, for once no one had to explain why Black Rock Shooter was fighting in some alternate world against Dead Master with someone narrating/explaining it. I like that feeling of where I go “Oh, it makes sense!”

        This may just be me but being spoonfed what’s happening in the anime or movie or whatever I’m watching through wordy/long-winded explanations/narration gets pretty tiring and I feel like it takes away from using your own judgment as to what’s going on.

        I mean look at the fight with Black Rock Shooter versus Dead Master – did it need dialogue or lots of talking to show Black Rock Shooter’s reason for fighting Dead Master? Not really. It was nice. Didn’t have to hear BRS/DM’s inner thoughts constantly throughout their fight because we know what they’re thinking. )

  • July 26, 2010 at 2:43 pmPhilip

    I loved this OVA. For the record, I would have watched and enjoyed this even if there was nothing related to Black Rock Shooter.

  • July 26, 2010 at 3:55 pmSuzuku

    This OVA seemed more like a prologue to a future story than anything else. The visuals were beautiful and all, but I agree with everyone saying not much happened. The producers spent way more time than necessary on developing Mato and Yomi’s relationship and not enough time on explaining what exactly that “other world” was. To me, it didn’t come off as a 24 minute episode on top of another 24 minute episode since the scenes with BRS felt extremely short in comparison with Mato’s scenes.

    I understand that this is supposed to be “based off a song and you should get info from there blah blah blah”, but the producers should still keep in mind that this is an anime and not everyone has listened to or will bother to listen to the song, and being ambiguous about 95% of the plot isn’t clever or good writing. Overall, I was satisfied to a certain extent but it obviously did not meet my expectations.

    And wow, I don’t know how you write so much Divine (or how I end up reading it all). I wish I had your blogger fortitude lol. :p

    • July 28, 2010 at 3:41 amAnjiro

      You know, I don’t even remember what the song was about. In fact, I watched this without any knowledge of what the song contained and still found it pretty self explanatory. The only thing I’m curious about was the alternate world/egos and I can understand why that was left ambiguous or unexplained. For me they probably did it on purpose to get people interested and want more.

      Also, it’s much better if you watch things with minimal to no expectation because then you wouldn’t find yourself disappointed most of the time or feeling like you were let down or something like that. (Because I’m not too sure what this OVA promised people but I’m glad I didn’t see whatever it is they promised for this OVA) At least for me, when I have little to no expectations, I find myself more satisfied. Sure I’ll have little things that I find could have been better but overall I leave more happy than sad. XD

  • July 26, 2010 at 7:12 pmmegalith

    Wow… Didn’t know this was out already…

  • July 26, 2010 at 9:05 pmNyan ko

    nyaa I want more…wish there are more episodes

  • July 27, 2010 at 10:12 am0927123

    Black Rock Shooter by ~0927123 on deviantART Vector made out of Divine’s screenie, shameless advertising, please support!

  • July 27, 2010 at 1:51 pmMad_Dog

    This anime was fucking epic. I loved every minute of it! And for a 2nd OVA to be hinted at in the end was awesome!

    And for those who want to know. Yuu’s character is White Rock Fists. And the girl who BRS fought with in the beginning was Golden Rock Saw.

  • July 27, 2010 at 4:03 pmLin-Meitoky

    BLACK ROCK SHOOTER RULEZ!!!.

  • August 3, 2010 at 8:47 amjadice

    am i the only one who loved this?
    the BRS parts werent ‘random’ they explained it in the end if you had half a brain.
    the show wasn’t in chronological order, sure, it didnt have the best storyline, but i thought it was neat that the ending of the OVA was the beginning of the BRS bits throughout it.

  • August 3, 2010 at 10:34 amTomer

    I kept getting confused watching this since I didn’t realise for quite a while that it was an hour long :P

    Still, I found the episode enjoyable and whilst the plot wasn’t anything extra-ordinary (mostly very ordinary in fact) the characters were likable and the animation was well executed; all in all I think that was an hour well spent.

    + imo I think they were better off choosing a relatively familiar and simple story rather than try to take on a massive undertaking considering the length of the episode. It looked to me like they chose to play it safe and create something that people will enjoy watching even if it wouldn’t be all that memorable.

  • August 25, 2010 at 4:28 pmOrin

    If this is a standalone OAV then it hasnt done its job. Its building up to something the entire episode but there is no payoff. Unless more OAV’s come out then none of this makes sense.

    “Stepping up to the task was former Kyoto Animation employee, production director of Suzumiya Haruhi”

    Oh dear…..

  • October 17, 2010 at 8:53 amAmethystWolf

    I peronally find that when people expect something out of an upcoming project, they become disappointed more easily.

    What’s lost is the plot for the very first battle(BGS an BRS) and the three scenes with STR, however, STR appears around the time when Yuu is brought into the series, so we can already suggest who STR is. The stories intertwine where they do specifically to give you a story about BRS’ world, an example being earlier mentioned STR=Yuu. You’re supposed to follow it yourself and not wait for “Oh look, they’re fighting. They’re fighting because…” That’s not what you’re supposed to do, unless you’re saying that. Also, Show Spoiler ▼

    Back to Divine’s blog, I appreciate that you didn’t go all “OMG THIS ISN’T WHAT I EXPECTED SO IT AUTOMATICALLY SUCKS!!!!” like the last 6 reviews I’ve read because Google said they included DL links to the OVA itself(obviously I’ve already seen it, I’m trying to dl it for other reasons). Atleast you know what to write about in a review -rolls eyes at other BRS review writes-

    /wall of text

  • October 30, 2010 at 7:05 pmOdeus

    First of all. I decided to watch this show for the hell of it not know ANYTHING about it. I just saw the title and recalled that it had been posted on Random C.
    I loved the animation and the intertwining of the two stories. If I had to guess I would think that the battle scenes take place after Mato and Black Rock Shooter merge together. around the end when things came together I felt a lot of emotion from this show. I would love to see a regular sized anime based on this OVA. It was very well done. And all the people complaining about the story need to go read a book or something if they want more story.