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「Ruby Rose」

As a special treat, here is a little introduction to RWBY (pronounced “Ruby”), an anime anime-style web series by the folks over at Rooster Teeth Productions. If you haven’t heard of it yet, I think you may like it.

Why I’m Talking About This

First of all, I suppose I should explain why I’m talking about this. I mean, it’s not anime, right? It’s made by Rooster Teeth Productions, an American company based just down the road from me in Austin, TX. So it can’t be anime, right? It’s not Japanese! It’s not even animated like most anime! It’s totally different!

Okay, maybe it’s not anime…technically. But after seeing the trailers (there are four of them) and watching the first episode, I can tell you this: it tastes like anime. It walks like anime. It talks like anime. It feels like anime. This may not be anime by the technical definition, but it has the soul of anime. If you like anime – at least, the kind of anime I’m about to liken this series to – then you should check RWBY out. It will air every Thursday, starting from last Thursday and ending in the second week of November, and you can catch it on the RWBY area of Rooster Teeth’s site.

Note: Just to be clear, Rooster Teeth Productions has in no way solicited this review. People try to do that with us all the time and we always turn them down. I’m writing this because I’ve enjoyed what I seen, and I think you will too. That’s the only reason.

Kinetic, High-Caliber Action

The biggest initial draw of RWBY (which stands for Red, White, Black, and Yellow, the colors that represent the four main heroines) is the action. This is stylish action ala Devil May Cry or Black Rock Shooter – in fact, if you likened the series to an extended video game cutscene where you never actually have to pick up the controller, you would be close to the truth. The action is energetic and kinetic, with the characters pulling off stylish and ridiculously cool moves that are just a treat to watch. That’s what first intrigued me about this series after watching two of the trailers, and the first episode did not disappoint. I really don’t feel like I can do it justice with words, so check out a trailer if you want to know what I mean. Personally though, I would probably start with the first episode. Keep reading for why.

Plot, Characters, Dialogue, Voice Acting

So I started watching this for the action, which meant that while my expectations weren’t necessarily low for the other elements, I wasn’t watching this for the plot or the characters. At ~5 minutes per episode (though pivotal episodes will be longer, like this first episode that clocked in at 12 minutes), if the action is consistently good then I’ll be tuning in. I was, however, pleasantly surprised.

First of all, the plot was intriguing. I really enjoyed how the intro scene had a mythological feel to it – they delivered the baseline, world-building exposition in a way that made it sound grand and remarkable, rather than, well, necessary exposition that they needed to get out of the way. They also slipped in the Huntress stuff smoothly enough during the battle so that it wasn’t weird when protagonist #1 Ruby Rose (Lindsay Tuggey) revealed her dream and was invited to join her new school. It’s all still pretty vague at this point, but it showed some good plotting overall, which is encouraging. One qualm: I didn’t much like it when Ruby Rose wanted to be normal all of a sudden. I mean, she got into the school of her dreams! Fly under the radar perhaps, but it felt weird for her to be talking about being a normal girl when she was so recently kicking ass with a badass mechanical-magic scythe.

Next, the characters. Straight character design-wise, each one is unique and easy to differentiate, but that goes along with the art-style. As for the characters themselves, we only have the barest of details on most of them, but at least a few of them are fun. I was surprised by how much I ended up liking Ruby Rose (who is patterned after Little Red Riding Hood), especially when she started getting super excited about becoming a Huntress. That’s another thing – I liked how expressive the characters were! That’s probably a perk of the animation style, which probably doesn’t penalize extra motion like traditional animation does, where repetitive movements are a great cost saver. I also really liked Roman Torchwick (Gray G. Haddock), who was a villain with some serious style. Not to mention his enigmatic ally, hmmm…

If I had to criticize something, it would be the dialogue. Some of it was good – I especially liked some of the smaller stuff, like when the mook motioned for Ruby Rose to take off her headset, though I suppose that was mainly non-verbal, so bad example. Other times though, the dialogue was cringe-worthy. Did they really have to throw out “beez neez”? Eeeee. This was something I actually expected a lot more of coming in, so only having a little was probably okay. This might just be a character feature of Ruby Red’s older sister, Yang Xiao Long (Barbara Dunkelman, Yellow), because of the two trailers I watched – Black and Yellow – I think most of the cringe-worthy dialogue happened in Yellow.

Finally, the voice acting. I went in expecting this to be fairly amateurish, and also expected to be weirded out – hearing chirpy, blatantly American voices coming from what look for all intents and purposes like anime characters can be disconcerting, like I was watching a dub. Honestly though, I got used to it by the second line any particular character said, and if you’ve played even a single JRPG dubbed into English (much less actually watch dubbed anime) then you’ll be able to get over it quickly too. As for the individual voice actor’s skills, they were better than I went in expecting. By and large they’re not pro-level, but some of them were quite good – once again I was quite smitten with Roman Torchwick, and I thought his voice actor did an excellent job – whereas others ranged from pretty good to serviceable. They all managed to put out at least one line that really entertained me though (Ruby Rose’s whole excited rant, Yang’s “Gross gross gross gross gross gross gross gross gross gross!”), so not bad. They’ll do the job, I think.

Looking Forward – Every Thursday

As long as the action is good every week, I’m going to keep watching. That said, the signs for the other elements are all looking tentatively good. If this show sounds like anything you might be interested in, I suggest you give it a shot. It may not be anime, but it tastes like anime going down, and isn’t that what’s important?

tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – Stylish, ridiculously cool action is what I came for, but the characters & plot pleasantly surprised. Can’t wait for more! #RWBY

Random thoughts:

  • I especially liked their cartridge-style magic system, which reminded me of later seasons of Nanoha. There’s something about it that makes the combat even more visceral, and I enjoyed it.
  • Another thing to make anime fans feel at home: RWBY certainly subscribes to the trend of having a lot of female characters wearing skirts. Plus they didn’t seem quite so pointlessly short or exploitative to me, but more of an offshoot of the heavily stylized character designs.
  • One animation qualm: I wasn’t sure why all the unimportant characters on the ship at the end had to be blacked out. That kicked my immersion in the balls a bit. They don’t have to be super unique, but full Minami-ke season 2 black faces is never something I look forward to seeing.
  • Since you’ll probably end up white listing Rooster Teeth’s site since they make you wait even longer before their videos start if you ad block them (which is brilliant really, the marketer in me heartily approves), why don’t you go ahead and white list RandomC as well? We don’t talk about this much, but the ad revenue does keep us in server money, so it would be appreciated. Thank you kindly.
  • In case you’re wondering, I will not be blogging this weekly. This is a special one-off to introduce the series to you. I hope you’ve enjoyed it, and that some of you find a new show to enjoy as a result.

For more from yours truly, check out my blog on writing, art, and the book I’m working on at stiltsoutloud.com.

 

ED Sequence

RWBY   ED   01 RWBY   ED   02 RWBY   ED   03
RWBY   ED   04 RWBY   ED   05 RWBY   ED   06

ED: 「This Will Be the Day」by Jeff Williams feat. Casey Lee Williams

July 23, 2013 at 11:15 pm
132 comments »
  • July 23, 2013 at 11:18 pmKoroshiyaKi

    I don’t feel like distinguishing this with an actual response on the basis that you called us ladies.

    • July 23, 2013 at 11:27 pmStilts

      You’re welcome for the compliment!

      (IRC in-jokes, for those who are curious)

  • July 23, 2013 at 11:24 pmBlaBlaBla

    I NEED THE OST OF THIS “ANIME”!!!

    • July 24, 2013 at 1:49 ambakakubi

      Yeah, especially. It’s freaking amazing.

      The ED “This Will Be The Day” is absolutely amazing.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oNtcP6EXm3s

      • July 24, 2013 at 2:48 am†Croos†

        It’s the OP

    • July 24, 2013 at 6:28 amDarcraven

      Almost all the songs are on itunes or amazon for purchase. Search for Jeff Williams/rwby under mp3 and it will all show up.

  • July 23, 2013 at 11:25 pmTaiyo

    My friend showed this to meet on Halloween last year. Isn’t it just a MMD series?

    • July 23, 2013 at 11:38 pmStilts

      I do not know what MMD is, so, uh…huh?

      • July 24, 2013 at 12:05 amukato

        @Stilts
        I think he/she is refering to Miku Miku Dance

      • July 24, 2013 at 12:09 amStilts

        Pretty sure no then. It was made in something called Poser Pro. It’s noted at the end of the episode one video.

    • July 24, 2013 at 4:23 pmImenak

      I think this might be a case of mistaken identity. This was released just a week ago… and the first airing ever was at RTX2013.

      • July 25, 2013 at 3:11 pmTaiyo

        I at least saw the ED last year.

  • July 23, 2013 at 11:34 pmKingdragun

    Stilts you should really give this series the full coverage treatment.. it looks pretty good to be just a web series.

  • July 23, 2013 at 11:36 pmBlaBlaBla

    Show Spoiler ▼

    • July 24, 2013 at 1:12 amJHN

      Also liked the way he said “Yes!”.
      Like, understand the situation already. XD

  • July 23, 2013 at 11:37 pmBlackStealth1989

    OK, I just watched the trailer. And all I have to say is Damn! I love the fight scenes they are almost like “Dead Fantasy”

    • July 23, 2013 at 11:38 pmStilts

      That’s probably because RWBY was created and directed by the guy who did Dead Fantasy, Monty Oum.

      • July 24, 2013 at 11:09 amJunko Tamiya

        I used to hate that Monty Oum went to Rooster Teeth, since it meant he stopped doing “Dead Fantasy”. That being said, he did greatly improve the animation sequences for “Red VS Blue”.

        However, with “RWBY”. I am actually for the first time truly excited by Monty’s work @ Rooster Teeth!

        Stilts, please cover “RWBY” more!

  • July 23, 2013 at 11:38 pmGrant

    Is there any information on how many episodes are planned?

    • July 23, 2013 at 11:41 pmStilts

      However many Thursdays are between last week and the second week of November, I guess. So 18?

  • July 23, 2013 at 11:40 pmewok40k

    Not bad, not bad at all… the hoodlums design being a bit a tribute to Stanley Kubrick’s “Clockwork Orange”…
    Will try to follow.

    • July 23, 2013 at 11:49 pmStilts

      I got that vibe too. Probably where the designs came from, in fact…I know a lot of the other characters pull from fairy tails (Little Red Riding Hood, Goldilocks, Snow White, others), so there are definitely Western influences in the character designs.

      • July 25, 2013 at 12:10 pmJusuchin (Military Otaku)

        Been forever, life got in the way. I got more of an Ax-Gang/Crazy 88s vibe, esp from Yellow. Said it in ze blog for Yellow trailer review, but the club fight was pretty damn badass.

      • July 26, 2013 at 1:16 amlauncelot

        Yellow’s fight choreography seems to have a mix martial arts flavor on it. Plus she’s the most melee character of them all. Her fight would bring it so close that you’ll probably see her nose hairs and bat her eyelashes, followed by that shimmering uppercut right through your chin. Very personal. I think I like her best.

        Red’s fighting style seems to make it like she’s playing pole-dancing over her own scythe/rifle. She’d twirl around her own scythe to make the best swing out of her own weapon. Very cute yet very sexy.

        White is a classical fencer – add figure skating, then finally an opera-style singing. Very European.

        Black meanwhile seems, in every move an oriental fighter. She’s so conflicted at the end that there seems to be some story behind it.

  • July 24, 2013 at 12:11 amRifuloftheWest

    Wow…that was pretty cool. I love to see scythe action sequences! And I really like that ending song.

    Really appreciate the exposure to this Stilts. Thanks.

  • July 24, 2013 at 12:47 amAsta

    Maybe it’s because of the American voices on anime character designs, but I really want a video game based on this title.

  • July 24, 2013 at 12:56 am†Croos†

    Arigato Stilts for advertising this. :)

  • July 24, 2013 at 1:05 amtsukioniisan

    I’ve watched the trailer of this before and I gotta say Ruby is Hnnnnnggggghhhnnn-kickass. Definitely worth giving a look. Hopefully it’s not just all out action – as what Stilts said about the Goldilocks/Snow White references, the settings could give a more deeper plot than your average show. Madoka Magica x BRS anyone?

    • July 24, 2013 at 1:17 amStilts

      I would be surprised if it goes full Despair Inc, but I bet it’ll definitely get dire at times. Who knows, though…that’s the fun of original works, ne? ; )

  • July 24, 2013 at 1:28 amDa5id

    Good start, but I’m honestly not completely sold.

    However, I’m definitely invested enough to continue.

    • July 24, 2013 at 1:31 amDa5id

      (I say as I pre-order the DVD off Amazon…)

      (…but only because it’s a webseries…)

      (…I swear…)

  • July 24, 2013 at 1:37 amTarage

    The minute Ruby opened her mouth was the minute I gave up.

    Also, I have many artist friends who work on various 2d and 3d endeavors and all of them agree that this is the worst rigging they have seen in a long time. There is a reason why one person doesn’t do all aspects of 3d animation. Jack of all trades, master of none.

    If this were an anime it would be panned.

    • July 24, 2013 at 1:39 amDa5id

      If this were an anime, it’d still be doing better than the carbon copy harem shows that are cranked out by the dozen each season.

      • July 24, 2013 at 6:16 pmTarage

        So instead of commenting on my valid criticisms, you take a pot shot at what you see as a flaw in existing anime. So are you saying you agree with me that this has horrible animation?

      • July 24, 2013 at 10:47 pmDa5id

        I’m saying it has at least a bit more thought put into it than most actual anime, and because of that, I’m willing to look at it past the 12 minute mark before making my judgement, unlike you who wasn’t even willing to look past 3.

    • July 24, 2013 at 6:17 am†Croos†

      If this was an anime, I would concentrate on making PLOT that sells rather than the plot itself. I need to plan for more revenue.

      • July 24, 2013 at 6:18 pmTarage

        It’s a paper thin plot. Yes, it has some interesting aspects to it, but there are major plot holes abound. This is no Gurren Lagann or Steins Gate. At best, this is Guilty Crown.

      • July 24, 2013 at 10:49 pmDa5id

        Really? What plot holes could you make out in this first episode, which is meant to simply establish the universe in a little over 10 minutes?

      • July 24, 2013 at 10:52 pmDa5id

        I also want to point out that people figured out Guilty Crown in six episodes at least, all of which were over 20 minutes each. RWBY’s had one episode that’s just over 10.

    • July 24, 2013 at 4:07 pmBlackbird

      I have to say the best thing about this so far is the voice acting. It is actually really good and so SO much better than so many dubs, it doesn’t sound awkward and forced and it flows rather nicely Ruby’s VA especially. It may be cringe-worthy in places (Ruby’s name for one had me wincing every time it was used >.<) but that has been the fault of the writers in most part, rather than the actors imo.

      Perhaps it's because I'm British and so am not used to the really heavy American accents and pronunciation often found in voice acting even in good dubs. These sounded really nice.

      One criticism I do have is with the fight scenes. They have too much ‘flair’ in the movements and not enough force behind the attacks. As an example, a show with a lot of flair and no force is Dragonball Z or Bleach, the attacks are pretty and numerous, but don’t feel like they’ll do any damage, whereas a show with a lot of force but little flair, is Hajime no Ippo, where the attacks are very straightforward, but you feel the full force of every punch, and you yourself almost feel the strikes. You really want a balance of these 2 attributes. I think One Piece has done a good job of this so far, as well as Kenichi, Gintama and Ippo, the longer it went on, especially in the Show Spoiler ▼

      .

      • July 24, 2013 at 6:19 pmTarage

        I can’t even watch the fight scenes because the rigging is so horrible. Why is it when an anime uses atrocious 3d characters for stand-ins it gets mocked endlessly, yet this entire web series that consists of nothing BUT horrible rigging and speed lines, it’s suddenly amazing?

        I don’t fault Monty for trying. I fault him for half assing it.

      • July 24, 2013 at 10:55 pmDa5id

        Probably because most anime have enormous budgets and major studios backing them and still manage to screw it up, but Monty has what little RT’s got and is still managing to get this much done.

  • July 24, 2013 at 1:39 ambakakubi

    I’m so glad you’re covering this. Been a huge fan of monty since his early days. Looking forward to watching this every week. Definitely a great first episode.

  • July 24, 2013 at 1:39 amChisel

    Been watching the trailers as they came out. Didn’t know that the first episode came out last week already. Thanks for the heads up. Just went and watched it. Like the plot and direction so far. Will definitely be following it every week. Only complaint would be same as what Stilts touched upon: the voice acting and some dialogue. But overall, definitely a really well done premiere.

  • July 24, 2013 at 1:41 amos

    Cool actions.
    I am wondering if there will be a HD beach episode.

  • July 24, 2013 at 1:42 ambakakubi

    Also, is it just me or is someone going around down voting every comment Stilts is making as well as all positive comments about this series?

  • July 24, 2013 at 1:44 am†Croos†

    GIF: Ruby doing silly Kungfu part. Take it if you guys are interested

    • July 24, 2013 at 2:55 pmagr0n

      Awesome thanks!

    • July 24, 2013 at 8:08 pminanis

      Thanks!

  • July 24, 2013 at 2:41 am†Croos†

    Somehow its kinda weird of me that keep looking down on the Media Player and keep remembering

    Damn. Why am I looking for subs. It’s in English, idiot.

    I guess too much anime subs lead you to that.

  • July 24, 2013 at 3:21 amSwarz

    Wow, you guys are cowering RWBY as well? Nice. Way to go stilts.

    P.S: But gotta say. The voice acting is horrible. :(

    • July 24, 2013 at 3:41 am†Croos†

      For English accent and mannerism, I think it’s all right.
      I seen a lot of dubs, and their are a lot of works worst than this.
      The only VA that I didn’t like in this episode was the first black hat guy who got kicked first. But I guess his a minor character after all.

      • July 24, 2013 at 6:07 amSwarz

        Well, it’s a good thing I don’t watch dubbed anime’s. ;)

        Yeah I agree, that guy was especially horrible. But I didn’t like Ruby’s and her sisters’ voices as well.

    • July 24, 2013 at 11:38 amStilts

      Just a one-off, just a one-off, but you’re welcome.

      And really, I didn’t think the voice acting was horrible, it just 1) has the weird dissonance where it didn’t seem like they should be speaking English (though like I said, I’ve played enough English-dubbed JRPGs to get past that) and 2) is being done by a company without the massive budgets & talent pool of your typical anime studio. I mean, when you can pull on Shizuka Itou and Wakamoto (and not pay them particularly well, if seiyuu pay is anything like animator pay), then you’re going to do it. A small American company doesn’t have either of those luxuries. I’m okay with that.

      Really though, I was surprised how much I ended up enjoying Ruby’s voice acting – I wasn’t super fond at first, but she really sold the character later on. Yang…well, it’ll take some more time before I’m used to her I guess, heh.

  • July 24, 2013 at 3:34 amBreedo

    …and with this….ameri-me is born.

    • July 24, 2013 at 6:38 amDa5id

      Amerime’s nearly old enough to get a learner’s permit.

    • July 28, 2013 at 12:14 pmSmithCB

      Wonder what Pixar could do with ‘Amerime’??

      • July 28, 2013 at 2:22 pmDa5id

        Nothing, because they don’t make it.

  • July 24, 2013 at 3:40 amZen

    This is stylish action ala Devil May Cry or Black Rock Shooter – in fact, if you likened the series to an extended video game cutscene where you never actually have to pick up the controller, you would be close to the truth. The action is energetic and kinetic, with the characters pulling off stylish and ridiculously cool moves that are just a treat to watch.

    Referencing spectacle fighters for a show with an all-female main cast and not mentioning Bayonetta? Blasphemy…XP

    • July 24, 2013 at 3:43 am†Croos†

      Maybe Stilts doesn’t know what Bayonetta is. :P

    • July 24, 2013 at 11:40 amStilts

      I know what it is, but I never watched/played it, so I used examples I was personally familiar with enough to make sure my example was accurate. I’ll go off on a limb when need be, but I didn’t see a reason to this time : )

    • July 24, 2013 at 2:48 pmagr0n

      Its not all female don’t forget vomit-boy!

      • July 24, 2013 at 6:02 pmDa5id

        He’s not a main character, he’s more main supporting, like the teacher and principal.

  • July 24, 2013 at 3:50 am†Croos†

    Its refreshing for me to see a 3D all-girls-main that has no PANTY service in a while.
    I like it that this 3D all-girls-main animation has more action > panties.

    • July 25, 2013 at 1:12 pmdestiny

      acording to the creator he applied anti uplifting skirt technology to every single skirt as what he wants to create is something serious without the big ass fanservice stuff youf been seeing in most anime lately.

  • July 24, 2013 at 4:09 amSaturo

    Shoutout to Roosterteeth, Burnie, Gus, Matt, Geoff, Gavin, Joel, Monty and so on.
    Greatest community ever.

  • July 24, 2013 at 4:37 amAngryKoala

    Did they change the voice actress for Ruby?

    She sounds better here than she did at the end of the Yellow trailer.

    • July 24, 2013 at 8:10 amaly25

      Nope, same VA. Also according to RT, the trailer was recorded after they did the first episode.

  • July 24, 2013 at 4:57 amShii

    For the Halo fans:

    Quick fact, the beginning explanation is voiced by Jen Taylor, the voice of Cortana!

  • July 24, 2013 at 5:32 amstarss

    I think this looks like the closest to anime that an American studio is ever gonna get in terms of tone and character design!

  • July 24, 2013 at 6:00 am†Croos†

    Honestly Stilts, the voice was actually ok. It’s better than Hyperdimension Neptunia Dub
    Show Spoiler ▼

    .
    If Americans actually dub an original Japanese anime work and starts saying “It’s just so moe” and change some original context to localize context, its just doesn’t feel right to hear.

    Since this one doesn’t need Japanese terms and was originally made in English, I think the voice acting fits pretty well, in my opinion.

    Also if you actually hear a real Japanese speak Japanese in front of you, you will be amaze that they speak much faster than in the anime.

    • July 24, 2013 at 11:50 amStilts

      It’s not necessarily that they’re speaking English – like I said, I got over that within two sentences of each character speaking, if that (Roman, Glenda and others sounded natural from the first word). It’s just that I’m used – whether in anime or in live action TV/movies – to watching the work of professionals at the top of their game, and most of the voice actors here aren’t at that level. Some are close, whereas others are closer to amateurs.

      It’s not bad, and like I’ve said before, for a small company like RT releasing something online, I will forgive animation and acting that isn’t 1000% pro-level quality. They don’t have the resources and budget for that. That doesn’t mean I’m not going to mention it, though. That is my duty to you, our readers.

  • July 24, 2013 at 6:08 amstarss

    Maybe this will pave way for new web-exclusive “American anime” in the future! Like for Netflix, or Hulu.

  • July 24, 2013 at 6:21 amFlanders

    This would make for an awesome RPG. If they make one, I would most probably buy this.

  • July 24, 2013 at 6:46 amCobeurn

    I enjoyed it. Though watching this after only seeing the first two trailers… I was kinda thrown, expecting a solemn battle-dance and got served a full action-comedic story

    • July 24, 2013 at 11:45 amStilts

      I suspect they’ll get back to even more action soon : ) Gotta set the story up!

  • July 24, 2013 at 7:07 amCraftWork

    Meh, maybe it’s just because I loath dubs so much, but I just couldn’t get used to the voices. Also the plot seems troperiffic, which is awesome. Though I stand by that this isn’t at all anime, it’s animesque.

  • July 24, 2013 at 8:36 amClockwerk

    I didn’t much like it when Ruby Rose wanted to be normal all of a sudden. I mean, she got into the school of her dreams!

    I’m pretty sure she meant she didn’t want to be treated special for getting into Beacon two years earlier than everyone else.

    • July 24, 2013 at 9:24 am†Croos†

      Agree.
      Imagine if you get promoted every week at work. Everyone will think that something fishy is going on.

    • July 24, 2013 at 11:44 amStilts

      I know why she said it, but it was really a dialogue problem which emphasized “I want to be normal” over “I want to fly under the radar”. That’s what I didn’t like. Too blatantly using a trope that didn’t quite fit.

      • July 24, 2013 at 7:37 pm†Croos†

        I guess we’ll find out what the meaning “being normal” for this guys in the next episode or future episodes.

  • July 24, 2013 at 9:14 amAB

    Roosterteeth on my anime review blog? Good riddance.

    • July 24, 2013 at 5:09 pmbakakubi

      Bye!

  • July 24, 2013 at 9:27 amfrubam

    When I saw the Red trailer, I thought it was pretty sweet, but when I saw the Yellow trailer, I was pretty much sold =03. Yang was just so cute, sarcastic, and badass, and the narrative of that trailer was good. it was just awesome as a whole =03.

    As for the episode, I liked it =03. I mean, it’s not optimally amazing for cel-shading(where’re the shadows?), and the fluidity can sometimes be a bit lacking, but the choreography of the action sequences were pretty good, and I find that more important in…er…such “fan”-made works. I was kinda taken aback with Ruby’s personality though; I thought she’d be more cool/kuu, based on the trailer, but I still like the way she was portrayed in the 1st ep all the same. Pretty cute she is (^,^)!

    There were a number of funny moments as well; when cigar-guy looked at Ruby from inside the store and stared at her like “….ooooookay (>.>)….”; when she had the headphones on and that guy tried to get her attention; the whole rambling part when she was talking to that silver-haired guy; and her ‘squee D0=” when Glenda(?) smacked that whip on the table =03. I hope it can keep this consistent quality up, but regardless, I will certainly be looking at future episodes.

  • July 24, 2013 at 9:29 amFalmung

    Rooster Teeth? Is Monty Oum involved in this? He’s the god of animation after all with Haloid and Dead Fantasy which were all done by himself.

    • July 24, 2013 at 11:13 amJunko Tamiya

      Monty Oum = “RWBY” creator, chief animator, and a slew of other credits. He was working on animation for Rooster Teeth’s “Red VS Blue” series from like season 5 to season 10. He has stopped his work on “Red VS Blue” though, to work on “RWBY”.

  • July 24, 2013 at 11:01 amcreaothceann

    Wait, you didn’t watch Red and White? Red is the best of them!

    R
    W
    B
    Y

    • July 24, 2013 at 11:55 amStilts

      I figured I’d see those scenes in the series somewhere. If I never end up seeing the ones I saw in Black and Yellow, then I’ll go back and catch the other trailers after the season ends. I’m weirdly patient like that : )

      • July 24, 2013 at 2:21 pmcreaothceann

        Well, from what I’ve seen so far the trailers don’t have much to do with the actual storyline. And even if they did, they were meant to be watched…

      • July 24, 2013 at 2:31 pmDa5id

        Basically, there’s a lot of action but it doesn’t say much.

      • July 26, 2013 at 3:46 pmStöt

        I never liked trailers, they spoil all too much. Even if it doesn’t tell you that much outright, remembering the trailer scenes while watching the episodes are usually very spoilerific (unless you are blessed with goldfish memory)

      • July 26, 2013 at 10:48 pmDa5id

        That’s the thing about these trailers. They literally tell you nothing.

    • July 24, 2013 at 1:41 pmRifuloftheWest

      Those trailers are action eye candy! Very cool. And the OST – love it!

  • July 24, 2013 at 1:36 pmStranger

    BLOG IT BLOG IT BLOG IT BLOG IT BLOG IT BLOG IT BLOG IT.

    • July 24, 2013 at 1:51 pmStranger

      Dammit, just saw your last line.

    • July 24, 2013 at 5:16 pmStilts

      Nyahaha, sorry about that. Just think about it like this – at 5 minutes per (normal) episode, it’s more like a short, and we never do more than introduce those. Wouldn’t be too much to say each week.

      • July 24, 2013 at 6:06 pmDa5id

        Then what about a season review once it finishes in November? That’s what I’m doing.

      • July 24, 2013 at 11:17 pmStranger

        Quality, not quantity my good man.

  • July 24, 2013 at 2:53 pmagr0n

    I got to say the cane gun sold it for me :p

  • July 24, 2013 at 3:30 pmXumbra

    Something that may be worth mentioning: the RWBYsaurus.

    one two three

    Oh, and also “Weiss so serious?”

    • July 24, 2013 at 6:29 pm†Croos†

      oh dear. :D

  • July 24, 2013 at 5:17 pmNoZaku

    Wish this Internet series didn’t attract all these hardcore anime fans.

  • July 24, 2013 at 6:20 pmcoolasj19

    Awwww I’m kind of disappointed you won’t be covering this. It seems like an extreme majority of the people reading the article liked it. You say there won’t be enough content to warrant continuing posts but, I’ll keep my fingers crossed that there is, and maybe there’s a small chance of you picking it up. Good things that reach your audience are always good to expose.

  • July 24, 2013 at 6:26 pmSilversea

    This shit ain’t anime

    • July 24, 2013 at 8:10 pminanis

      really? and?

    • July 24, 2013 at 8:32 pmStilts

      I said as much (technically). That’s not the point. The point is that it’s anime-esque, and I thought it was good. Why worry about the minor details?

    • July 25, 2013 at 1:15 pmStranger

      Nice elitist attitude you have there- do you have a matching superiority complex to go with it?

    • July 25, 2013 at 3:05 pmFlanders

      Like what Stilts said, it has the look and feel of anime in it. Much like when some people get surprised when I correct them that Avatar: The Last Airbender was an American animation, because they thought it was anime (felt like it). If The Legend of Korra (the sequel to ATLA) book 2 will be made by Studio Pierrot, the studio behind Bleach, wouldn’t that technically make it according to your definition an anime even though it is still American?

      Again, It’s a minor detail. Even some Japanese anime copy or get inspiration from American animation at times (I didn’t watch it, because I don’t really care for such stuff, but what comes to mind as an example is Panty & Stocking from Gainax – I just knew about it because I happened to stumble upon a blender animation of the two main characters of that anime while looking at blender animator Tomoasks – who is incidentally Japanese).

    • October 12, 2013 at 10:16 pmSDFGS

      *sarcastic voice* Oh god the horror of having to watch something that isn’t totally anime and is being reviewed on this site~! I swear you would be b*tching if Legend of Korra somehow managed to get reviewed on here, learn to accept new stuff and stop being an anal-ornery otaku.

  • July 24, 2013 at 11:52 pmJason Isenberg

    Rooster Teeth is just pulling out all the stops! Halo, podcasts, their own Expo, rage quits, let’s plays, and even this! That’s just nuts, so nuts I wish I worked for them… :(

    • July 25, 2013 at 9:32 amSaturo

      You and probably 95% of their fanbase. But they’re not hiring right now.

  • July 25, 2013 at 2:31 am†Croos†

    Somehow I find some QUALITY in this anime. Dunno if they noticed it or not but anyway I want to point it out.

    For episode 1 I guess I found one:
    This to this.

    • July 25, 2013 at 3:19 amDa5id

      It looks like what’s fragmenting is parts of the projectile, and that’s what the teacher uses to throw back at them.

  • July 25, 2013 at 3:42 amkanade_

    Haha no offense but no matter how I look it, totally looks like MMD.

    Nevertheless, I enjoyed the fighting scene.

  • July 25, 2013 at 10:43 amDomo-kun

    Props to Stilts for talking about this anime although it’s not Japanese!

    I disagree with the “purists” that say that for anime to be called “anime” it has to be made in Japan. For example many people feel that the Avatar : the Last Airbender is anime, yet it does not show up in MyAnimeList.net because it’s not made in Japan, even though it looks and feel more like traditional (shonen) anime than many Japanese anime.

    • July 25, 2013 at 3:34 pmDa5id

      You know, just because it’s not an anime doesn’t mean it can’t be a good show. You seem to think people are insulting it by not calling an anime.

    • July 26, 2013 at 3:38 pmc2710

      I won’t call Avatar: Last Air Bender as an anime but a cartoon

      Once that I thoroughly enjoy

      • October 12, 2013 at 10:19 pmSDFGS

        Fun Fact, Avatar (not sure about Korra, I think they also revealed the same about Korra in an online interview) is illustrated in Korea. It was revealed in the extras of the dvd of that god awful live action movie.

  • July 25, 2013 at 8:52 pmJusuchin (Military Otaku)

    Direct copy paste from here: http://rightwingotaku.wordpress.com/2013/07/25/rwby-recounting-episode-2-and-of-purity/

    Feel free to downvote, bash, comment, etc. They’re my observations.

    —-

    I agree with Stilts that this isn’t anime. It’s anime-esque. Much in the way that early American cartoons were the inspiration for Anime, this draws from the many flavors of Anime to create. It’s to be noted that while RoosterTeeth is big, it isn’t in the league of say, Production I.G., Kyoto Animation, etc etc in terms of sponsors and budget. Most of their content is focused on their eponymous Red vs Blue series, and RWBY was only given the green light after Monty fulfilled his obligations with RvB Season 10. To say it isn’t anime is correct. To put it down because it isn’t what you’re used to is wrong.

    Flexible minds. A lot of fans I’ve seen nowadays seem to not have it. If it’s not being followed by someone, or if it isn’t from Japan, it becomes ‘bad’ in some eyes. If it doesn’t have the character speak in cutesy, slow Japanese with subtitles in the bottom, then it’s not anime, and by that vein of thought, not good.

    “How dare they copy anime and make this?” “This crap isn’t anime! It’s garbage!”

    Exaggerations sure, but no doubt some are thinking it. Just the sheer fact it is made by folks best known for the Halo machinima will put them off (although I’ve been a fan of Monty since Haloid and Dead Fantasy) and I’ve heard so much complaints about the voice acting. I actually like it, there is even a commentator on RC that says the animation was subpar. The CGI so horrible that some alleged friends can do better. To be honest, this to me is great. Why? I look at it as an evolution of technology. It isn’t the super-complex CGI programming utilized at Pixar Studios, nor is it some similar tech utilized at the big name studios, but rather a COTS (commercial, off-the-shelf) product that fits with Monty’s background.

    And I totally understand the comparisons to MMD. MMD, Poser Pro, Autodesk Maya, etc. These COTS 3D animation products allow a novice to do what they want to do. Allowing a small team (have you SEEN the amount of staff Monty has in his disposal? It’s a pinprick compared to even RvB!) to easily create this series. In terms of star power, getting back to the VAs, they were natural to me. All things considered. The biggest star they have is Jen Taylor, who may be doing this due to her long time association with the Halo franchise. The voices for Ruby, Weiss, Blake, Yang, and John don’t seem to be seasoned VA, but they fit their roles. Unlike dubbing companies who may or may not get it right. I cringe at bad dubs, but I didn’t here. I just cringed at the haters.

    And speaking of which, plot-wise? I expect another interesting universe. The equivalent of ONE episode has passed (episodes one and two, as well as the trailers if anything) if we are to compare it to anime, but many have already dismissed it. What plot can be obtained when they’re still giving us the hook? People are quick to jump to conclusions because it’s different. It isn’t what they’re used to, or some other flaw they see because it isn’t Japanese Anime.

    I think that’s it really. Stilts made the sin of featuring the pilot episode for what is going to be a nice and interesting show, especially since the show is, to me, what I see is part of the future. Online distribution, CGI done by COTS products, small team of artists and producers, a niche market getting by word of mouth and interesting hooks. A step into the world of small studios with a tight budget and barely any sponsors, but allowing for the creative taps to open up.

    So I don’t get this argument. I’ll call it ‘purity’ for some stereotyping. Nothing is ever pure. Much like anime was many different styles brought together and then expanded on its own, it’s now the basis of a new generation of things to come.

    And to be frank, I’ll end with this from Monty (via the Austin Chronicle):

    “I joined Red vs. Blue four years ago, I had the choice of working on the new Tomb Raider, which just came out, or Red vs. Blue. I’ve released three seasons of Red vs. Blue, and have been able to tell a decent story that people seem to enjoy. Meanwhile, Tomb Raider just came out – and it’s a phenomenal game – but it just came out. I can’t imagine having worked for four years on one thing that may or may not be good. If I have a choice, I’ll start with the smaller, more frequent stories. You get more chances.”

    I’m giving RWBY its chance. And so far, it’s holding true to its promise. I’ll keep Attack on Titan (or whatever it is) in the back-burner.

    • July 26, 2013 at 3:35 pmc2710

      Decided to give this a try and I’m pretty much sold on the idea.

      Jerky animations aside, the music, seiyuus (if that’s an applicable term here) as well as the premise of the show seems interesting.

      No doubt that this may look like a high school or senior high school style of animation, I’m willing to give this a try.

      True that RWBY is not to the standards of Appleseed or Final Fantasy but I feel that it’s not fair for the show to be shot down as seen in the comments above. I’m planning to follow this right till the end.

  • July 26, 2013 at 3:51 pmStöt

    lots of downvotes in this comment section…

    Anyway Stilts, I whitelisted randomc for you

  • July 27, 2013 at 2:55 amDorian

    You know for anyone saying “its not anime”… Please stop doing that. The word anime is simply a short form of animation. To say its not anime is to declare that its not animated. Which I’m sure it quite is.

    Before someone goes “but anime means Japanese-style anime”; yeah, if we talking the English definition of the word: the stupidest definition on the face of the planet. English takes a short form of an English word and then makes it into a totally different meaning. WHY!?

    …oh wait, that’s what English does all the time! I seriously hate my native tongue the more I know about it. Oh and so I can infuriate everyone, yes I call all forms of animation anime. Its a short form of a word, I’ll use it as such. Stigma attached definition be damned.

    Ahem. Enough with griping about the stupid English language. Onto the important stuff, RWBY itself.

    I’ll admit I enjoyed it. Its definitely got a few hiccups concerning technical aspects, voice acting ranges from average to great and the dialogue is a little meh. Other than that, I would consider it a success. Especially for a show that doesn’t have a ton of money thrown at it. The soundtrack is probably the biggest selling point of the show so far and the plot has potential to be something nice.

    I’m hoping that as the show progresses, the actors will get a better idea of how to handle its role. Its going at a web shows pace as well, so its like a drip feed. Already want the next episode right now.

    Will definitely be watching this unless it absolutely crater’s on its face. Why yes, I have watched Episode 2. Whatever made you ask that?

    • July 27, 2013 at 2:58 amDa5id

      Still not an anime, though. Doesn’t mean it can’t be a good series, though.

    • July 27, 2013 at 3:54 amJounouchi

      Anime is not an English word but a Japanese word. America used to call it Japanamation in the 90′s before the japanese term was used. I remember in the 90′s when I argued that Sailor Moon and Dragonball Z were not cartoons, they were anime. Can you compare Goku to Bugs Bunny? Tom and Jerry to Sailor Moon? Lol, I am pretty old to remember a time when Hanna-Barbara, Warner Bros. and Disney made cartoons, only to stop because its cheaper to import and dub anime. Anime is sometimes outsourced and done in South Korea. There are definitely differences between anime and cartoons, RWBY has elements of both styles, my gripe with it is only quality issues.

  • July 27, 2013 at 3:17 amJounouchi

    Without knowing any anything about the origins of RWBY, I have to say I liked it a lot.The opening song gets you in the mood and is enjoyable. Also, the animation and style is well done for a company of its size. Now on with some problems. The mixing(sometimes jumbling)of western, eastern and fantasy elements, it’s kinda all over the place but you have to go with the flow sometimes. The voice acting was adequate. Anime uses bg music to supplement and enhance the dialogue and scene. RWBY lacked in this area, the bg music was there, it was mixed too low causing it to sound like a bad theatre play at times.

    With the second episode only being six minutes, I can foresee them not getting in depth with the story anytime soon. I think I will wait a while then watch all the episodes together.

  • July 27, 2013 at 8:00 amAbsaroka

    When I see the silhouette of Ruby with the scythe all I can think of is Maka from Soul Eater. In fact a lot about this show reminds me of Soul Eater, which is a good thing I might add.

  • July 28, 2013 at 12:36 pmwissenschaft

    Can we start a petition to get Stilts to cover RWBY weekly? The episodes are quite short after all, so hopefully not too much work. Please?

    • July 28, 2013 at 2:21 pmDa5id

      The problem is that there wouldn’t be much to say. Barely anything happened in Episode 2, and if they’re all 5 min long until the middle and and end, the posts are going to be REALLY unsubstantial. Best to wait till the season’s over.

  • July 28, 2013 at 3:04 pmwissenschaft

    Its certainly possible to blog a group of episodes. 2 or 4 at a time.

    But yes, at the very least I’d love if Stilts reviewed the first season as a whole at the end of its run in November.

  • August 24, 2013 at 9:23 pmGuest

    I am surprised to find this here. I haven’t checked to see if you dropped it (hopefully not), so I’ll be looking out for your posts. By the way, the “bee neez” bit was great!

  • October 12, 2013 at 11:09 pmDa5id

    You know, 13 episodes into this first volume (which is apparently only half of the full season), this show doesn’t seem to know how to manage its time.

  • December 14, 2013 at 6:22 amThong Doan

    I just watched all the 16 RWBY episodes and i think it was AWESOME!
    I wonder if there are any animes or cartoons that is like RWBY, art like, story like, weapon like, fighting scens or something like that.
    The animation is, what should i say refreshing? After seeing many thousands of episodes with the same ish animation i got bored.
    Ive watched lots of anime and cartoons too, so i wonder if some1 could tell me any anime\cartonn that is like RWBY.