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Maken-ki! Tsuu – 01 »« Nisekoi – 01

Wizard Barristers Benmashi Cecil – 01

OP Sequence

OP: 「JUSTITIA」 by Lia

「レディ・ジャスティス Sword and Scales」 (Redi Jasutisu Sword and Scales)
“Lady Justice Sword and Scales”

For some reason I briefly tricked myself into believing bad-ass cop woman was the MC before being hit with a good dose of “wake up, it’s the Moe Era. Also, you read the Winter Preview, baka.”

I’m not entirely sure why I was interested in Wizard Barristers; it may have been all the Ace Attorney I’ve been playing lately, or Div-kami-niisama pointing it out as interesting looking during preview season, or just the fact that I miss watching shows about crazy fantastical things. Perhaps for others the appeal lays in the idea of a law show including wizards, or the fan service (plentiful indeed, seeing as this is ARMS we’re talking about), or they’re just curious about the original premise. Regardless of prior expectations, I have to say, I’m not really sure what to think about this premiere.

Action-wise and world-wise, I think there’s some potential to Wizard Barristers, though I’m not sure if the whole court procedural part and the plot will be up to snuff in the long run. I like court dramas okay, but so far I’ve seen a lot more girls than I have law in these first 20-odd minutes, and it doesn’t really help make me interested. As a fan-service show, that’s a good sign of course, but I’d like to think there’s at least a bit more to be had, if only the characters shape up in the next few episodes. I actually was pretty disappointed to see our heroine Cecil (Tanabe Rui) be more or less a stereotypical bubbly and young-looking lead, not because I shouldn’t have expected it, but because I don’t really like to over-saturate myself with information before trying out a show. It would have been nice to see someone like Quinn (Inoue Marina) in the lead for once (it feels like ages since a leading female character has been an older woman with minimal moe-fication, but maybe I’m just watching the wrong shows), but as that’s not the case, you have to decide if Cecil works for you or not. There’s definitely a hint of backstory, an allure, if you will, to keep me from judging her and her perverted frog familiar too harshly too early, but other than that, her metal/mecha powers and her supposed intelligence in court (still to be seen), I can’t say she’s too interesting yet. Right now she’s a naive and newbie barrister who wants to represent a supposedly innocent wizard involved in a bank robbery, and it looks like her mother or someone related to her is in jail. Could that be her reason for becoming a lawyer? It’s likely, but we’ll have to see if it all works out well.

The animation and direction are fine as far as I can tell, though I’m rather apprehensive considering this is the director of Galilei Donna we’re talking about; that ended with a court trial, and it was terrible, so I’m hoping these are two entirely different animals. Action-wise, things look nice, though the characters do look a little stranger and take a bit of getting used to here and there, and I’m really hoping the plot can stand on its own, both in the courtroom and beyond. In summary, I’m not hugely impressed with this premiere, but it never hurts to see where it goes from here.

Note: There are currently no plans to cover Wizard Barristers on a weekly basis. Check back on the season schedule over the next week for any possible changes.

 

ED Sequence

ED: 「BLUE TOPAZ」 by 田辺 留依 (Tanabe Rui)

Preview

January 14, 2014 at 1:59 am
86 comments »
  • January 14, 2014 at 2:43 amOkina

    Based in screencaps, character design reminds me of Kite/Mezzo Forte

    • January 14, 2014 at 2:51 amP Ko

      I was about to post the same thing and for that reason I can’t enjoy it without feeling a little dirty.

      I’m watching too much already this season and this doesn’t look aesthetically pleasing to me.

    • January 14, 2014 at 2:57 amZhinvu

      Character designs are from the same guy as those series, Yasuomi Umetsu. He also happens to be the one who conceptualized Wizard Barristers.

      • January 14, 2014 at 5:56 amboingman

        That information about Yasuomi Umetsu behind it was actually the first thing that I expected to pop up in this blog entry. That’s why I also expected someone else to post it. :D Could it be that Kairi didn’t know about it?

      • January 14, 2014 at 6:48 amZannafar

        Kairi is aware of it, given the mention of Galilei Donna.

      • January 14, 2014 at 10:15 amdeVaras

        With Yasuomi Umetsu involved I was expecting a lot more rape, guess that will be in the DVDs.

  • January 14, 2014 at 2:44 amZhinvu

    Been a while since I heard the great Norio Wakamoto, but I didn’t expect him to be the frog familiar.

  • January 14, 2014 at 2:47 amRyuuzaki

    lets all wait for the special one! :D (ifyouknowwhatimean)

    • January 14, 2014 at 6:45 amZannafar

      Unlikely to happen.
      Both Kite and Mezzo weren’t specials but orginal AVs and only later got non-AV adaptions.

  • January 14, 2014 at 3:04 amMeh

    I prefer bad-ass cop woman as the main character.

    • January 14, 2014 at 3:43 amiTheShirt

      She better be in every episode then.

    • January 16, 2014 at 12:21 pmRichard

      Yeah the main character seems typical so far and with a perverted sidekick frog to boot. But I really dig the awesome cop woman! Wish she could be the main character!!! I was so full of hope but that was soon dashed :(

      I might check this show out further. Action scenes were nicely done I must say

  • January 14, 2014 at 3:19 amPasserby

    I’d like to see where this “black and white” relationship between wizards and normal humans will go, seeing that wizards here are a persecuted minority (with a very good reason). Art is good, although some female characters look a bit odd.

  • January 14, 2014 at 3:39 amiTheShirt

    Thanks for making the post. This one slipped under my radar. I’ll be keeping up with it because I shamelessly did enjoy Mezzo Forte and I fancy the artist.

  • January 14, 2014 at 4:04 amCorin

    …this was… messy. I’m already getting the Galilei Donna feeling from it – skipping with all haste from point to point, poorly scripted feel-good stories (because that’s what that whole workplace romance thing was), and distinct tonal dissonances – and it’s just episode 1. And while I usually think it’s pointless to complain about fanservice, that frog groping bit was just out of left field and fairly pointless.

    …I’ll see how the next few episodes go, I guess.

  • January 14, 2014 at 4:11 amblack_cat1

    Yasuomi Umetsu and Emperor Wakamoto bring me here! :)

  • January 14, 2014 at 4:24 amCrook

    Disappointing how Cecil herself was executed as character. When you’re watching a story that integrates court elements, you’d expect smarts and a relatively down-to-earth protagonist. This is a seemingly naive, and mentally young moe-blob who doesn’t even seem to think before she does anything, and from time to time will suddenly gain the ability to read people really well. It feels inconsistent in general because of what seems to be the main cast. Colorful characters who don’t feel very real, spare a few, and just don’t blend with the rest of the world they are building. Some characters have potential to be good, but I just can’t see that happening for our moe protagonist. The pacing also left a lot to be desired. I’ll give the series its well deserved time, but I can’t say that my expectations are high.

  • January 14, 2014 at 4:44 ambolton

    the female characters look a little weird but this has potential. it’s a very unorthodox premise with very weird characters (a moped-riding periwinkle-haired canadian teenage magical lawyer weird) but i’d have to say that it’s part of the appeal. i’ve always been interested in law as well so it’ll be fun to see how the writers’ interpretation of it plays in this setting.

    wondering how the other newbie is going to fit into the story.

    • January 14, 2014 at 5:08 amkornpone

      Yeah that other newbie, no kidding.

      She was closer to being conventionally cute (in an anime sense) than anyone else. But hell, but what a crappy personality :(

      • January 14, 2014 at 11:56 ambolton

        i didn’t like her either. i hope she isn’t the antagonistic rival who eventually becomes the MC’s best friend but it seems that way to me atm. it’ll be interesting how they will stack up against each other in this sort of setting though.

  • January 14, 2014 at 5:03 amName Required

    Marina Inoue as a bad-ass cop? I’m sold.

  • January 14, 2014 at 6:00 amboingman

    Animationwise the first episode was nice. Unfortunately, I fear that, as usual, the next few eps. will more likely not look even half as good.

  • January 14, 2014 at 6:36 amjhpace1

    The anti-wizard prejudice is pretty hefty here, just look at the two policemen’s reactions each time to the main female wizard barrister character. But keeping the cold-powers guy who fought back against the bank robbers in jail? And the preview has him up in the “death court”. That’s pretty harsh, even with the way gun laws are being tightened in the USA. If you have to go to court each and every time you use your wizardly powers, I can see a lot of apathy from wizards to the rest of the population as a result. Which might be the goal here.

  • January 14, 2014 at 6:52 amleatherhead333

    Well the first battle scene was fine until that cigarette SOMEHOW hit a guy who can deflect bullets and defy the law of physics by not being effected by wind resistance.

    Can’t say i’m digging Cecil as a main character. First of all she needs to change her apparel. Call me brash but i wouldn’t be eager to accept someone who looks like they are fresh out of high school wearing short shorts to represent me in court. Professionalism is key in this kind of work and she lacks just about any kind of etiquette a lawyer should have (also running into a crime scene without showing your I.D is just foolish and i’m surprised they didn’t try to arrest her when she ran in).

    Frog is annoying and perverted. Great that’s just what the show needs to spice things up right?…………………(sigh)

    The last battle scene really had me facepalming. She for some reason goes as far to say she’ll represent the person who attack her! Why? Was that supposed to sound cool or funny?

    No…….NO!

    It’s stupid no matter how you look at it. First of all i’m pretty sure under no circumstances that such a thing would be possible in a respectable court of law. In fact I’m pretty sure it’s illegal Secondly you might as well be mocking them because unless you are trying to get yourself convicted you’d still be providing evidence against them even if you were their lawyer.

    Had it not been for the animation and the overall possible promising span of the premise i would have dropped this.

    • January 14, 2014 at 7:28 amActus

      In regards to representing someone who attacked her, there is no reason why that is not possible. A prosecution is usually done by the government, regardless of the will of the victim. It is also not unheard of that the victim has been invited by the defendant as a witness to aid the defendant’s argument.

      • January 14, 2014 at 8:14 amleatherhead333

        She is a lawyer and from what i understand she meant it as if she was going to be his lawyer for the case of him attack her. She said “I’ll represent you” which in my opinion implies she wasn’t planning to be a witness for her own case. And it is indeed illegal (not to mention illogical) for a victim who is a lawyer to represent the criminal who attacked them in court. At least not in any respectable court i know of.

      • January 14, 2014 at 11:20 amhoh

        It’s a criminal not a civil case, so it would be Tokyo City against Thug A & B rather than Cecil against Thug A & B. Cecil is not against the thugs in this trail by default.

        The argument to dismiss Cecil in this case would be that being the victim of the crime, she may bear a grudge against the thugs and would want to put them in prison. i.e. there is an conflict of interest here, and she may not act in the best interest of the thugs should she be representing them.

        I’m not sure how such conflict of interest would be handled in a real court. Would the judge exclude Cecil outright? Or would he/she only consider doing so upon request by the thugs or their other legal representatives and it is assumed that if the client agree to be represented by certain lawyer there would be no conflicts on interest. If it is the first case, Cecil can argue that since neither she nor her college was harmed during the incident, they bear no hature towards the thugs hence no conflicts of interests; if it is the latter case, Cecil would have to convince the thugs to have her representing them in the first place anyway.

      • January 14, 2014 at 11:31 amdaikama

        @Actus: Possible and credible are two entirely different things. I struggle to think of any attorney I know who would represent someone who assaulted them.

        A prosecution is usually done by the government, regardless of the will of the victim.

        FYI – At least in the US, for the vast majority of criminal cases, prosecution is always “done by the government”, and that includes the decision whether to bring charges against the accused. Some states allow for private citizens to bring charges for minor (petty) or misdemeanor crimes (e.g. trespass). The victim can not force a case to be brought to trial nor prevent one from being so.

        However, a prosecutor is more likely to pursue criminal charges if the victim is cooperative. There are instances where charges were not be filed due to lack of cooperation by the victim. What you wrote is technically correct, but to me the way you phrased your statement implies that “will of the victim” is irrelevant which is not true.

        ———————————————-

        @leatherhead333:

        And it is indeed illegal (not to mention illogical) for a victim who is a lawyer to represent the criminal who attacked them in court. At least not in any respectable court i know of.

        it’s not “illegal” AFAIK. Illogical – uh, yeah. Can only imagine how a jury (or even judge) would view that. Your comment reminds me of an old adage: “A lawyer who represents himself/herself has a fool for a client.” A lawyer representing the assailant in the very crime in which she is the victim – a real victim (i.e. not a malicious, false accusation), is simply mind boggling. Guess she’s an “M” type. >_>

      • January 14, 2014 at 11:42 amActus

        A lawyer owes his/her client a fiduciary duty to act in the best interests of the client. However, if the defendant agrees for her to represent him, fully knowing that she was his victim, then there is no conflict of interest arising in the first place. It effectively means that Cecil can represent the defendant.

        This alligns with the case law whereby it was held in Clark Boyce v Mouat that a lawyer is not barred from acting in conflict of interest as long as the informed consent of the parties are obtained.

        She would only breach her fiduciary duty if she does not act in the client’s best interests, if and only if in the course of her duties, she fails to act in the best interest of the client.

        (Since the title is ‘wizard barristers’, I assume it refers to the law governing the legal profession in England and Wales or other commonwealth countries as there are no ‘barristers’ in the United States nor in civil jurisdictions)

      • January 14, 2014 at 11:52 ambolton

        can we just stop for a minute and consider cecil’s good-hearted nature and overall naivety in saying “Please turn yourself in, I will represent you.”? she’s saying she bears no ill will towards the thugs and while assault can not be overlooked she is willing to negotiate with the judge for the thug’s benefit given he repents for his crime by turning himself in. it’s really simple. a lawyer’s job isn’t always to get a “not guilty” verdict.

        @leatherhead333 — thought you’d like to know that cecil was shown in the preview to be dressed for the occasion. the cigarette was ridiculous but it’s definitely nothing shocking in this context. your other complaints are subjective so i won’t argue against them.

      • January 14, 2014 at 3:48 pmhoh

        @Actus: Well, thanks to your legal expertise, the question of whether Cecil can represent her attacker is cleared. Regarding your later post, I too think that the first scene with the police where Cecil refused the search is very well handled & shows the amount of effort into the background research. I also do agree that if it is just a fan-service show, it wouldn’t notice that there are actually paralegals in a law firm.

      • January 14, 2014 at 4:15 pmZnail

        I wouldn’t take the word “Barrister” too serious as the Japanese audience and the writers are very likely to be ignorant about the diffrences to Brittish law. From what we see so does it look like her job is more like a US Lawer then a Barrister.

      • January 14, 2014 at 7:12 pmleatherhead333

        If she is trying to reduce their sentence couldn’t she just drop the more severe charges (like attempted murder) to lighten their sentence? I mean from i’ve seen the wizard court system isn’t that corrupt yet. It could totally be worse by not even allowing them an attorney since they barely see them as humans. The first trial was a rather bad example because everything that guy did deserved the death penalty no matter how you look at it. Maybe not in such an inhumane manner but he deserved death nonetheless.

        With this case coming up i believe the charges are murder and assisting in a crime. They are sending him to the magic court so it’s possible the prosecution is going for the death penalty (which isn’t totally out of the question i guess). Maybe next episode will show how jaded the legal system is against wizards but so far i haven’t seen anything overly prejudice about it. As for her apparel i know she wears a proper suit when in court but she probably needs to change her everyday clothes a bit. If someone like her ran up and said they would defend me in court i would immediately decline them. Lawyers usually always wear proper apparel when talking with their clients and it gives off the impression that they are experienced and can be trusted. When someone with short shorts and twintails who looks fresh out of high school tries the same most sensible people would decline. I know i would.

    • January 15, 2014 at 12:53 amActus

      @leatherhead333

      1. As mentioned, it is the ‘government’, that prosecutes. Cecil doesn’t, nor does it seems that she will charge anything. As mentioned, it is not unheard of that the ‘victim’ is invited by the ‘defendant’ to be a witness to ‘aid the defendant’s argument’.

      2. Whether the court is corrupt or not cannot be concluded from those scenes. That was the end of a sentencing case, not a substantive prosecution case. The two are different.

      3. I don’t know what the guy’s exact charges are but from what I could see, he seemed to have caused death to at least one constable (which includes armoured police) and this is an aggravating factor in ‘sentencing’ (linking to the fact that it is a ‘sentencing case’).

      4. I don’t see how that is more inhumane than some other capital punishment enforcement techniques. Hanging someone is prone to mistakes. Electrocution is in essence, the same as what is shown. It is a matter of whether ‘capital punishment’ in itself is inhumane rather than the methods.

      5. The charges are most likely manslaughter, and either as a joint enterprise in robbery or for aiding, abetting, counseling or procuring the robbery.

      6. lawyers usually wear formal attire, indeed. But it doesn’t preclude the fact that the lawyer is entitled to wear casual clothes. Whether to wear formal attire is up to the person him/herself. The client might be fine with either.
      When she ran up and said that she is going to defend the thugs, she wasn’t doing so in the course of her employment. It was her ‘time off’.

  • January 14, 2014 at 7:07 amstarss

    …… I don’t know what’s hand-drawn or CGI an-y-more!!! WHAT IS LIFE!?!?!

  • January 14, 2014 at 7:16 amlaaa

    Action part was awesome but plot and world set up are just crap
    So we have this totally normal world with super strong mages having 0 power in society and laws that forbid magic use
    Ok so all girls represent good side and boys bad side well was kinda funny..

  • January 14, 2014 at 7:21 amActus

    I think the criticism is unjustified. Though it may fall short of being a brilliant action anime, it sure is one of the anime which actually shows that some background research is actually done.

    Though I do wonder why the word ‘barrister’ is used rather than an ‘attorney’ – since Japan employs a civil law system, the setting does reflect reality to a certain degree. Regardless, it has done a wonderful job in trying to reconcile the classification of lawyers. The partners and associates are introduced, and so are the paralegals – arguably the core cast of a firm.

    How the police is shown to request a search of Cecil’s bag is also wonderfully executed. It is clear from statistics that certain demographics have a far higher chance of being arrested or searched and subsequently released without charge. In the context of Wizard Barristers, this is reflected as well. It is also true that the police hardly know their grounds of search and seizure – such as the need for a warrant as in the anime. Though perhaps the only criticism here, and it is by no means obvious, is that Cecil did not mention the equivalent of other doctrines such as ultra vires or procedural impropriety (assuming they are trying to show some overarching affinity to the common law system).

    The interview scenes are also very enlightening as it shows how adducing evidence is not as easy a task as it seems, particularly in trying to obtain witness statements.

    It also nicely notes at the fact that not every lawyer is ‘in for the money’. Not ever area of law gets you big bucks, and many lawyers do commit to one area of law for an ideal.

  • January 14, 2014 at 7:25 amWanderer

    This is the largest group of complainers about this show I’ve seen anywhere. Practically everywhere else I’ve been, the praise for this first episode is nigh-universal. A strong opening, an interesting premise, an intruiging world setup, good action, good art and animation.

    And some of us actually like Cecil. Sure she’s naive: she doesn’t have any practical experience. She’ll learn, possibly the hard way, that life is more complex than just what she’s studied in the law books. And I happen to like a character who is energetic and keeps trying their best. So what if it’s been done before? That doesn’t make it a bad thing!

    And Kairi… I’m not sure what these complaints about fanservice you’re making are based on. We had one scene of the frog groping her, while she was fully clothed (and speaking as a male anime viewer I can say that scene did not come across as even vaguely erotic), which I would hesitate to call fanservice. I’m not sure what else you may be referring to. The length of her skirt? We’ve seen legs before. They’re not showing us anything. While her clothing is unusual, it’s not particularly revealing. I’m just looking through screenshots and trying to guess what you’re objecting to here. Not having much luck.

    Lastly, this isn’t Galilei Donna. Please don’t let that color your preconceptions.

    Anyway. While everyone is entitled to their opinion, this is kind of a surprising one to see, given the strong positive reception this episode has garnered in most places I’ve seen it discussed. Even if it isn’t ideal for you, it would sadden me if no one here at RandomC chose to cover it.

    • January 14, 2014 at 7:35 amWanderer

      Ugh, rereading that it comes across more confrontational than I meant it to. Cursed inability to edit, and my tendency to just say the first thing that comes to mind without thinking of how it comes across!

    • January 14, 2014 at 7:47 amActus

      I mostly agree but I would say law books aren’t too far away from reality. Many cases are pretty grim and most certainly an unpleasant read, ranging from spouses trying to get as big a buck out of their ex-spouse as possible during a divorce, to banks dispossessing families, to social workers lying to achieve their quota. Having a cheerful attitude might be the best thing you could ask for.

    • January 14, 2014 at 12:53 pmPancakes

      I think the problem is how much every genre recently has the teenage moe-girl MC. There is no variation, no use of characters which can expand upon a concept rather than act simply as fan-service fodder. The concept here is good for all intents and purposes, but the incredible focus on using cute, naive, young girls is off-putting for something as serious as litigation and criminal trial. I might be in the minority, but IMO this would be exponentially improved should it have an MC who was middle-aged. Cute and naive does not have to be limited to young girls nor treated as some constantly overt after all.

      As an example consider Ghost in the Shell. Do you seriously think the philosophical discussion there would have worked as well using a girl similar to Cecil as the MC? Of course not, it leaves a bad taste of dissonance by distracting you from what the author intended as quick and dirty means to increase the viewer base. Similar idea here, this is moe-blobbing and fan-service suffocating a good plot rather than a good plot enhanced with a little moe and fan-service. Whether you agree or not, there is no question these types of shows are trying to incorrectly innovate by using different plot lines over top of the standard schtick of “cute girls” rather than identify the problem of too much focus on “cute girls”. It’s like the whole pathetic male harem stuff, hilarious the first time, f*cking annoying every other time.

      • January 14, 2014 at 1:27 pmbolton

        i really don’t see anything wrong with trying to appeal to a larger crowd. while ghost in the shell doesn’t contain moe elements in particular, it definitely isn’t short on fanservice. kusanagi’s costumes very often have the sole intent of garnering male viewership. i highly doubt her sexuality is anything more than a shallow attempt to generate male interest as well. in here the girls are pretty moderately dressed so you can view it in a way that there is a sort of trade-off there, of course, however, that isn’t to say that they are equal (and they really shouldn’t need to be).

        i really think it’s a matter of taste, as well as what the writer/producer has in mind as their target audience. their explicit usage of cecil’s moe qualities may also just be there in an artistic sense simply for the irony and contrast. in short i don’t think it’s really fair to say that cecil’s character design or archetype is flawed when it’s just very simply not how you’d prefer it to be. personally, i can see the appeal in both methods of garnering male interest.

      • January 14, 2014 at 3:57 pmPancakes

        While I agree that there is nothing wrong with appealing to a larger crowd, there is a fine line between appeal and fan-service. At least in Ghost in the Shell the fan-service was subdued, it was never centre stage and even became the focus of jokes by individuals such as Bateau. In Wizard Barristers it’s all about the moe, we have the endearment take centre stage and are expected to believe that a girl dressing and acting underage will be taken seriously in a niche where appearance and rhetoric rules supreme. Magic and its suspicion here become the foundation to support the moe, not the thing to be enhanced by the moe.

        There’s nothing wrong if you like this type of show, these are just personal musings I have noticed as of late which show a similar level of stagnation akin to what Hollywood and the American entertainment industry is experiencing. No one is willing to break out of the box because it is all about earning money, with artistic expression becoming little more than an excuse to pass over doing the same thing over and over again.

      • January 14, 2014 at 5:19 pmbolton

        you make fair points but i don’t see it quite the way you do. cecil has been called out for appearing too childish at least twice in the first episode and has been seen making a different approach regarding her wardrobe in the preview. while moe is all apparent, i don’t see it taking a leading role. it seems to me that this show wants to introduce law to the young adult male audience with magic, moe, and an (hopefully) enticing story progression as its vehicle.

        i honestly can’t see the difference between the two regarding fan service aside from the typing of it. i understand very clearly how something like this doesn’t appeal to you, and i am not trying to say that this show doesn’t have its share of tasteless moments; but i do not agree that the moe overpowers the show so much so that it harms its potential.

    • January 14, 2014 at 3:03 pmplushkin

      Not to mention this is one of the few shows that don’t take place in FREAKING HIGH SCHOOL!! Thank you merciful Odin!
      Seriously, you can count them on one hand the number of non-school related anime this season (or any season for that matter)

      And while I agree you shouldn’t judge a director on his/her previous works, I think it’s ok to condemn those abominations (Tetsuo Araki, you are dead to me, especial since Ouma Shu is your self-insert character, you Asperger’s Syndrome whackjob).

      Galilei Donna wasn’t condemned as the Demonic Pentagram of terrible anime of this generation, so I’m willing to give this series a shot.

    • January 14, 2014 at 5:04 pmsikvod00

      Wanderer: You say this first episode has a “strong opening, an interesting premise, an intriguing world setup, good action, good art and animation”. I tend to agree, and if you look at Kairi’s post, he seems too as well. What frustrates me is the need to have yet another cute moe MC and a nearly all-female cast in order to be appealing. This is the fan-service that Kairi is probably referring to, not panty shots or whatnot.

      I’m tired of this trend in anime of having to constantly pander to one specific group; the market is over-saturated with this material. I mean, isn’t it possible to have all those good qualities you mentioned but without that stuff and still be successful? Just because something has been done before doesn’t necessarily make it a bad thing. But boy, when it’s been done before a million times, that lack of diversity really starts to wear on some people.

      • January 15, 2014 at 12:34 amActus

        Though the female cast might be for other purposes, it does reflect reality that the majority of law school graduates, and thus law firm associates, are female.

      • January 15, 2014 at 12:54 amsikvod00

        I didn’t know that…thanks for the info! The cynic in me says it’s for purposes other than establishing realism though.

  • January 14, 2014 at 7:32 amKF

    I watch the anime and it’s actually good.

  • January 14, 2014 at 7:55 amKurisu Vi Britannia

    Defo reminds of me Mezzo Forte Bon!

  • January 14, 2014 at 8:03 amRyusen

    The Art style looks alot like Mezzo Forte. And MF was I think more Fanservice than anything else… So I personally expect this to lean on the same… granted not as bad as MF did.

  • January 14, 2014 at 11:01 amechykr

    Wow, it’s been ages the last time Umetsu was personally in charge of character design, and that title Kite was quite a mature audience oriented OVA at that as well. It would seem Galilei Donna was merely a warm up for Umetsu for what is only his third foray into television as a director. (The first, Mezzo, was nearly a decade ago. )

  • January 14, 2014 at 11:42 ampetitorenji

    This reminds me a lot of Kite

    • January 14, 2014 at 12:00 pmHunterWulf

      Sure .. same director and character designer, he worked on Kite and Mezzo Forte OVAs, Mezzo TV series and few other shows, some times he directs only, sometimes he designs characters and writes the story, sometimes he does all of these.

  • January 14, 2014 at 12:09 pmHunterWulf

    Umetsu’s Wizard Barristers is really proving to be the “eye-candy” series of this season it even rivals Beyond the Horizon in terms of visuals and animation (sorry Kyoani, big fan of yours but this one really outdid anything i saw recently), it’s good to see Umetsu Yasuomi (surprised his name wasn’t mentioned in the entry at all) working on a show of this quality/production values that isn’t a hentai like Kite and Mezzo (which both had fantastic action scenes, which you can see in the director’s cut if you can’t stomach the sex scenes).. either way .. he is really talented and it would be a waste if he only worked on Hentai.

    I have to say i really like the premise of wizards being prosecuted and magic existing but being outlawe, that adds an interesting twist to things indeed, Character wise there are many interesting characters to root for (like the badass female cop) so it doesn’t make sense to complain about the main character not matching your taste if there are other interesting characters around who also play a role in the story and a person will surely find one of them to root for, i also hope the overall story is worth it and isn’t just an excuse to the amazing animation and action (not that i really mind that XD)

  • January 14, 2014 at 12:25 pmMormegil

    I’m watching this for the cute girls.

  • January 14, 2014 at 1:10 pmRockmanshii

    Hey but Cecil is pretty badass too and she can summon a mecha. Needless to say I really liked that first episode, and Cecil. While there was tons of action and pretty sudden scenes, like the dragon out of nowhere, it turned out to have flowed pretty well. Didn’t think I got exposed to too much info at once either. That’s just all my opinion though.
    Wanderer already pointed it out but I’ll say it too. Kinda sad it seems everyone calls it a “fanservice show” just because Arms is the studio doing it. I didn’t notice any panty shot in that first episode, beside in the OP. I don’t really get the complaints. Sure there’s also that quick frog molesting scene and tons of women showing their legs but that’s true for tons of shows you wouldn’t call “fanservice shows”. I don’t think we should call it that judging from the get go. I’m gonna follow my own advice though, maybe the show will turn out to have tons of sexual fanservice. But that first episode really didn’t.
    Really looking forward to the rest of the show and hope it doesn’t takes a turn for the worse. A shame it’s not covered here but that’s life.

  • January 14, 2014 at 1:52 pmWhites

    This show was just stupid. Anime is going downhill if this is the crap most studios put out these days. . .

    And yeah the dude at the beginning being defeated by a cigarette butt? I’m sorry, but that was just beyond retarded.

    They seriously need to have two episodes of Log Horizon a week to wash the crap anime out of my mouth. ugh.

  • January 14, 2014 at 1:53 pmchad28

    this was a really harsh post IMO.
    the only fan-service i remember was the frog and it made me laugh.
    that being said i liked the animation except the CGI “robots” stood out from the rest a bit too much for me.

    • January 14, 2014 at 6:49 pmKairi

      I’d like to remind the world that I am a woman, tyvm, and that after show after show after show after show, it is not funny to see anyone getting groped, especially not for laughs. It’s like, imagine if most anime shows featured guys getting kicked in the balls for laughs. All. The. Time. I know people didn’t appreciate it in Samurai Flamenco, so imagine it in every other episode of every anime ever. It wears thin. I don’t mind fanservice, I really don’t, (look at my blogging record, there’s fanservice in plenty of stuff I’ve covered and I don’t care one way or the other), but there’s really a line between witty/classy stuff, and stuff that is just kind of unnecessary and distasteful.

      On another note, most of my commentary actually wasn’t toward this type of service so much as the use of moe and cute female characters for the sake of raising “appeal”. It doesn’t have to be bouncing boobs to garner a certain kind of allure.

      I was harsh because I didn’t really enjoy the show, it wasn’t bad but it wasn’t amazing either in my opinion. I appreciate it for what it is, but it didn’t work for me; it doesn’t have to. I am very happy if many of you enjoyed it, but bloggers aren’t just here to give objective criticism, that’s impossible. We’re people. Some of us are people barely recovering from the flu and who’ve been having horrible internet issues. Others of us have probably been having way more fun with the season; it colors opinions. I did not mean to be incredibly harsh, but that’s just how I felt, and I think it’s important to say when you don’t like something and why, even if it’s just one person’s opinion. I’m glad there’s many of you guys offering counterpoints so that people on the fence who read the site will have many choices on whether or not this show is for them.

      • January 14, 2014 at 7:06 pmsikvod00

        OMG, I’m sorry! I totally forgot and referred to you as a “he”. -_____-

      • January 14, 2014 at 7:12 pmKairi

        Haha, it’s fine, really. I don’t mind. The reason I bring it up is because the point of view toward fanservice changes somewhat depending on if your gender is the object of it or not. So, I don’t find this kind harmless, despite others being alright (Hataraku Maou-sama! had great fanservice, for example). I’m not interested in either female or male oriented fanservice, but I’m more used to the male oriented kind so that’s what I understand best; it’s just that since I’m not into it, I judge it less by visual appeal and more by subliminal messaging. There’s both good in bad stuff in both male and female oriented fanservice if you look.

      • January 14, 2014 at 7:32 pmbolton

        thanks for taking the time to write this. i respected your opinion but have a better understanding why it is what it is now. i would have to agree that the groping was tasteless, so hopefully we could see less of that. i know there are other places i could go to talk about this show more, but i enjoy this blog and so i hope somebody on the team would like to pick it up, at least for the discussion it’ll likely generate (aside from the moe/fan-service topic).

        thanks for making the post itself and i hope that things go more smoothly for you this season.

      • January 15, 2014 at 4:33 amKF

        I’m sorry Kairi, I too had confused your gender. I’m truly sorry!

      • January 15, 2014 at 1:18 pmchad28

        what i found funny was that the tinny frog with the deep voice was a pervert and that he got slapped for it.
        if he was watching dirty magazines and she slapped him, it would still be funny.
        i watched the first episode of this show, Magical Warfare and Hamatora which have some points in common. I honestly think this was one of the 3.
        i never said you had to be only objective, but you don’t write only for you.
        And honestly I kind of hate that some people (not saying it is your case)have this tendency to say that anime is dead because of moe. i mean it’s not my thing either but if only judge an anime because of what it looks like you are doing a disservice to yourself.
        PS: I watched Aku no Hana and liked it. No, I didn’t like the character designs at all, but it had a really good story.

      • January 15, 2014 at 1:20 pmchad28

        *I honestly think this was the best of the 3.

    • January 15, 2014 at 1:22 pmchad28

      i do understand where you coming from and i’m not attacking you.
      i enjoy reading other people opinion and that’ why i come here
      BTW did you watch Magical Warfare and Hamatora?
      What did you think of them?

  • January 14, 2014 at 5:04 pmJason Isenberg

    I was just thinking Phoenix Wright too lol, this is actually enjoyable. I love the animation as well! :)

  • January 14, 2014 at 6:37 pmNamaewoinai

    I got to admit to say that, this maybe CAN save anime…but i can feel that it’s position is kinda too weak!

    OK sarcasm aside…I wish I could see more on this one and i don’t truly care if this is some sort of a fan-service stuff or whatever…i mean seriously the director who run it is well known if you ask me!

    So…I wish them Luck!

  • January 14, 2014 at 7:52 pmricz

    Oh great.. Another anime added in my list T.T

  • January 14, 2014 at 10:04 pmAnimestuffsometimes

    You know, it’s kind of amusing; looking at it on a neutral basis, isn’t the “badass” woman or “badass” man more derivative and normal in a show like this than the bubbly main character type? Yeah, I know most people like when anime is pretty much the same as watching an animated version of a Hollywood movie; but hell, it’s not like that kind of stuff doesn’t come out at all anymore. (Then again, when anime that would cater to the old style does come out; people tend to rush to erase it’s existence so they can continue to pretend that anime died when moe became a thing.)
    This is basically Law and Order, only the episodes are 24 minutes long instead of an hour, it’s an anime; and it has a bunch of themes chucked in. Adding a character like the main into the mix makes it actually less derivative; I don’t know about you, but I find the “badass” woman archetype to be even more shallow and overdone than the moe-type. Personally, I’m not as much defending the main character as I am correcting a confusing argument.
    You’re watching an anime, you’re not watching NBC late night or watching the latest blockbuster hit starring that hot busty woman actor you like so much. Admittedly, I can see this being something that’d piss women off a bit more-so than men. Men just hate it because they stopped liking anime in the early 00′s and just stick around to constantly critique everything and judge people if they like something that came out in the last 5-10 years. Women hate it because you have to admit, is a ditsy girl who acts like a kid something a woman would want to see?

    Then again, I digress; I find this far less derivative than what most of you would want to be watching instead. I can’t believe how annoying people get in a medium that comes out with over 30 new shows every season. You can’t say that for American TV, yet that’s where most of you belong.

    • January 15, 2014 at 5:03 amleatherhead333

      Hmmm i’m not sure if you have been watching anime for a while or not but the bubbly main character as a protagonist is DEFIANTLY overdone compared to a badazz female MC. In fact it’s a very rare treat to see one these days. I’ve been watching almost every single new show that airs for the past year and i can barely name 5 cool female leads while i can name about 30 who have a overly hyperactive and naive attitude off the top of my head. For a person who watches a lot of anime it can indeed get annoying to see this personality so frequently because it leads to predictable character development and story telling. They usually see the world for what it is and are slowly broken of their naivety, then they starting growing up and understanding their place in the world OR the world simply conforms to their wishes because of……….magic (cough Kamisama no Inai Nichiyoubi and Kyousougiga).

      This character type is not nessarely a bad thing but i simply do not agree that the cool and experienced female lead is overdone compared to the cute and energetic one.

      • January 15, 2014 at 10:41 amAnimestuffsometimes

        Thanks a ton for the great reply, normally I’d expect a reply filled with nothing but vitriol but I get one that’s actually compromising and thought out.
        It’s true that in anime the bubbly character type is very overdone, however; largely in an anime like this you wouldn’t see a character type like that as the lead. There are tons of darker anime with characters like these (examples include the ones you’ve mentioned, the latter of which I rather enjoyed); however, it’d be much more derivative to see one with the redhead as lead than the pink haired one. By derivative, I mean; it’s a story we’ve seen again and again. I can’t imagine how utterly boring this show would be if it were just one of those tough girl shows, one of the appealing things about anime is that it is so different from what we are fed in the west. (which isn’t bad, I rather like a good portion of it) but you never see shows here that star cutesy characters in fast paced, tough environments.

        It just seems like people want to watch something made by Quentin Tarantino starring Uma Thurman, or an action movie that is basically just Die Hard starring that chick from the Matrix being badass and spitting cool one liners while she slow motion shoots her enemies. I find that incredibly boring, I’d rather have a cute awkward type as the lead than the (*smokes cigarette* “Looks to me like we have ourselves a sticky situation.” *takes off sunglasses*)type. This is what makes anime great, it’s different from everything else; no matter how repetitive people believe a plot to be, the last thing we need is anime taking what is repetitive and boring here as their standard. This character type at least is relatively new, so I’m glad Japan isn’t taking after the west any more than they already have.

        (Side note: It’s not that I think Japan is better than us, I like a lot of media from all over the place, I just like that Japan has it’s individuality in their storytelling and characterization and I don’t feel that they should change it too much; especially considering there are so many shows that come out. I can’t believe the people who get so much more miss than hit are even still talking.)

  • January 15, 2014 at 12:43 amSatyr

    This was certainly entertaining,definitely looking forward the rest of the series.It kind of gave me a Witch Hunter Robin vibe.

    And let me guess, their office is going to be assaulted,they will be hunted and will have to go under ground at one point lol.Most anime involving some kind of organisation where the main protagonist works has to go through this trope.

  • January 15, 2014 at 5:36 amhoh

    Cecil is more or less Yasuomi Umetsu MO. You’ve got to give the guy credit that not everybody in the show is like that.

    Personally, I’d find the all female cast more problematic than one single Moe Cecil.

    • January 15, 2014 at 8:59 amActus

      You’d be surprised how many more females there are that get into university than males in Asia.

      • January 16, 2014 at 11:09 amhoh

        They needn’t be in the law firm. Still, I prefer a show with a balanced male & female cast rather than an all female cast.

  • January 15, 2014 at 10:13 amHochmeister

    I was really enjoying this, then the main character showed up.

    It wasn’t the “moe” personality that did it (though I was annoyed at how she ran into the crime scene even going to work), more like how she was almost Mary Sue-ish. Lawyer at 17 (implying she started college at 9?!), exotic foreigner, instantly fawned over by almost everyone in the company who go out of their way for her behavior (time off to visit your mom? That’s what weekends are for), tragic backstory, can instantly read people, super powerful mage, animal familiar (whose voice is extraordinarily annoying), and all topped off with a bubbly naive personality. Additionally, her face and hair design made me blanch; did not appeal at all. She just isn’t very relatable; heck at this point I’ve got far more sympathy for the other girl who actually did show up professionally and on time only to be passed over. But the worst thing? She destroyed a beautiful antique steam engine to build her stupid giant robot! Lock her away! Or at least fine the shirt off her back.

    On the other hand the animation was beautiful and the world was interesting. I’d watch a show about that police lady catching magic criminals any day. I’ll give it the three episode rule, but the main character just might be the sticking point.

  • January 15, 2014 at 9:13 pmLuxor

    Kairi: Funny that you mention Ace Attorney. I played and loved the first game over Christmas break and got the next two games on my to-play list. I certainly watched this show just because I loved Ace Attorney, but I do see a little bit of the wacky and fantastical in Wizard Barristers as well.

  • January 16, 2014 at 2:00 amOminae

    Saw the first episode and the production team got it right with the Canadian zip code.

    As a FYI, Japanese law is influenced by the Germans when Japan modernized its government.

  • January 16, 2014 at 1:53 pmMagoiichi

    I liked the court trial, but I was hoping we’d be able to see what type of prison Udos, if that’s what the magic users are called, are put in.

    Based off the Op, Cecil is interesting. She didn’t really show that in the first episode, but hey, that’s why it’s a first episode.

    The female cop is interesting too, I hope she apart of the plot and not just during whatever crime related thing happens.

    The second new recruit is meh for now.

    Someone already beat me at mentioning the art style is the same as Kite and other stuff duhuhu.

  • January 16, 2014 at 3:52 pmloremzo.migliorato

    I liked the first episode, mostly because of the procedural drama premise, though I hope they focus more on the courtroom part of the show than the magical powers one. I wasn’t really involved with the first case premise though. It was so clearly a case of self defense that it won’t really be that interesting apart from being used to show how easily magician are convixted regardless of real guilt…
    Some (not all) character designs put me off though. Sure, it’s a nice change of pace from the generic anime look, but some faces are just… ugly. Like the protagonists. I don’t really find her cute.

    • January 16, 2014 at 3:54 pmlorenzo

      Sorry, I used my wrong nick there.. could someone delete the message?

  • January 16, 2014 at 4:54 pmAggron

    The last mature female lead was the woman from Pyscho-pass (I think), to think she was a detective too :p

  • January 18, 2014 at 9:01 amiron2000

    Seeing the Butterfly group reminds me of Ghost in the Shell and Psycho Pass.
    Well maybe loosely.

    I too think that the woman on death roll is related to Cecil and might be her drive to pursue the path of a Wizard Barrister.

    The mysterious group that had eyes on Cecil.
    Do they have something to do with why the lady is on death roll?
    Ok, according to the site they are of a rival Barrister company (Jacknight?).

    The guy who ordered the magic thugs, is he that inspector guy?

    Wonder what the final big picture will be.

    Somehow I’m suspicious of Moyo.
    Or maybe she is just an awfully friendly type.
    According to the official site her magic is unknown.
    Her eyes reminds me of a cat.

    Ageha seems to be a good boss.
    Or does she already know more about Cecil?
    The website says that she is actually older then she looks :P

    Theres a correlation chart at the official site too.

  • January 21, 2014 at 3:24 amJames roberts

    Wizard101 offers player Wizard games set in the magical Wizard school, Ravenwood Academy. Players of all ages set off on fun quests to save Wizard City from evil forces, and collect magic cards to duel their enemies in the game worlds.