OP Sequence

OP: 「vanilla sky」 by ましろ 綾野 (Mashiro Ayano)

「戦端 もう一人の僕」 (Sentan Mohitori no Boku)
“Open Hostilities: My Other Self”

When it comes to story telling, there’s always a fine line between having too much exposition and leaving too much to the imagination. Avoiding the former tends to be the better bet when it’s all said and done, but when it comes to Gunslinger Stratos’ introductory episode, there’s certainly an argument to be had about how a little more exposition would’ve made it a lot better this time around. Instead, all we get is a brief glance at the futuristic world of our main character, Kazasumi Tooru (Abe Atsushi), and some of the interactions he has with his small cohort of friends. After a bit of typical school shenanigans, we’re abruptly thrown into a violent meeting with what seems to be an alternative world’s version of himself, and what we get with this first episode is an amalgamation of questions with little in regards to answers—a pity considering how much potential his world holds as a promising setting.

I mean, when you have automated systems that work with a touch of your wrist, self-boiling meals, robots that do everything, a ranking system based on genetic potential (technically money, but still), and a backdrop like this, one would hope that you would spend at least more than a few minutes on it before potentially tossing it out for the rest of the series. In the overall scheme of things, they’re probably doing things this way so we find out about things at the same time the characters do, but there’s a way to go about it, and highlighting cliche interactions, jumping all over the place, having inconsistent animation, and accomplishing almost nothing of note in a first episode isn’t it. The action made the second half better than the first, but even those were hurt by some of the things I’ve already mentioned, and there’s not much here separating Gunslinger Stratos from being just another run-of-the-mill generic series—even if it was quite fun seeing them mess around with beam sabers and doing crazy acrobatics.

Ultimately, what this leaves us with is a series that’s likely to leave almost everyone with mixed feelings and questions as to whether or not it’ll be worth watching in the long run. It was to be expected considering the difficulties of adapting from another medium and some of the staff working on this, but this was a series I wanted to be good, and it certainly didn’t meet my expectations there. That’s not to say it’s not worth watching—it’s only the first episode after all—but there’s certainly a lot of ground to make up after this lackluster introduction. The action scenes and the face-off with an alternate self are certainly things they can build off of here, and there’s definitely room for the series to grow depending on how they execute it over the next few episodes, but count me in as someone who wonders if even that’ll be enough to keep this series relevant given the other competition this season offers.

Note: There are no plans to cover Gunslinger Stratos weekly at this time.


ED Sequence




    1. I thought the same thing, and knowing about GITS and its world, that’s what I meant. It’s quite a pity they didn’t bother to flesh out the original world much and instead skipped around like no one’s business.

  1. Urobutcher is even more lost here than in A/Z, and the fact that he can’t really kill anyone in the main cast, made his role as director a little bit questionable… Oh, wait. Is an Square-Enix game-based series, so it will ultimately end as crap.

      1. Huh. Is everyone so afraid of him to give him the full role at something these days? Last several titles it’s always “oh he wrote the idea and then ran away”

  2. This will be wait and see, it’s the first episode so exposition and explanation was never really expected (nor should be expected I might add). The concept from what little I know upon reading is certainly interesting, but it remains to be seen if the execution will live up to the hype; definitely going to need at least three episodes to decide.

  3. Am I the only one that got Guilty Crap vibes from this? Hopefully that isn’t the case, but I already got burned by one utterly insipid protagonist today (Plastic Memories) and don’t see much hope the the dude in this one either. The spiky-haired onii-chan was way more entertaining to watch.

    1. Honestly it’s really hard to match Guilty Crown in level of crappiness, it will take them a lot of effort to get that bad since GC set the bar so low XD

      Also clone/other-self hi-jinks are always fun to watch XD

      1. The point is there are obvious similarities here between his previous work in Guilty Crown and the backdrop we got here, and it makes sense that that’s the case.

      2. Your point is that you didn’t like the way the show presented itself in the first episode and you’re bitching about that.
        This show has 0 similarity with GC and I’ve read interview with the series composer Kaihou Norimitsu where the director’s work on SnK was highlighted instead.
        海法 それは監督の江崎慎平さんが元々は『進撃の巨人』の演出をされていた方という事情もありますね。「こんなにアクション書いちゃっていいのかな」と心配になったんですが、やっちゃってくださいと(笑)
        海法 監督の方からは、よりリアル感のあるSF映画的な世界観をやってみたいという声がありまして。

      3. So my entire last paragraph about there being potential here was ignored. Got it.

        If you liked this first episode, that’s fine. But let’s not extrapolate extra and accuse me of something I didn’t do just because I didn’t like it as much as you might have and it’s an opinion that goes against yours or something of the sort. Trust me, if I wanted to bitch about a show, you’d never hear the end of it. Or, rather you wouldn’t ever hear of it at all because I wouldn’t bother to post about it.

        On the other topic, you’ll note that I’m not the one who noted the GC similarities first, and that I merely added to it saying yes, it would make some sense if you see some similarities to it. You can keep chirping about SnK, but just because it’s mentioned there doesn’t exclude his prior works in GC being used or influencing the depiction in some manner. Given the backdrop, it doesn’t change the fact GC has a lot more directly in common in the Sci-Fi aspects. Not to mention, if you worked on SnK, would you rather have that talked about or GC?

        Just because it’s not mentioned doesn’t mean doesn’t play a part. Big difference there, especially since what I gather from the interview excerpt is that the action parts are influenced by SnK, which was not the point of this discussion.

        Either way, I don’t see what the problem is. I merely called the episode out for the negatives I felt should be noted and stated some facts about the past work of the director here. Unless there’s something wrong with the expressing of my opinion and of facts surrounding the people that made the series, there’s not a big deal to be made here. Unless you’re misconstruing my comments as something along the lines of “the guy can’t make anything good and/or thus, SnK sucked” or something, which is not the case, seeing how I liked SnK and actually covered it here.

  4. 1 of 3 episodes…

    I’m surprised that they bothered to show this futuristic world so much and then shove the Mains over to the other to face their alternate selves…This may or may not backfire if they don’t show the other world as much as they did with the futuristic one just earlier. Almost a waste of potential in a similar sense as the MC himself. Just check his stats (the hexagram one), he’s wasting his potential.

  5. Since Nitroplus handled the script production, hopefully this series will improves as more episodes aired.
    Steins;Gate 1st episode was worse than this in my opinion. I didn’t even finish the episode until most people saying it’s actually improves later.


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