「私たちガソバリます！」 (Watashi tachi gasobari masu!)
“We Can Do It!”
Battle academy shows are fun in the sense you always know what you’re getting. Cute girls, cute things, some dehumanized, faceless enemy (usually), and a lot of courageous, overcoming the odds character development. Because most of these shows are so similar, judgement largely comes down to quality and execution. Sure, some throw a twist or two in for uniqueness (a la Qualidea Code), but it almost always returns to the base setup. In this regard Battle Girl High School sticks close to tradition.
Off the mark you definitely know—you better—what BGHS is about. We have a huge cast of all the usual archetypes, some magical power up ability investing each cutie pie with a unique weapon, and a random threat they must defend against. Having apparently decided to fully embrace the genre tropes, BGHS also goes full out and features not just an idol squad, but bloody school club antics to boot. Guaranteed if the show finds a way to work competitive sports into things too it will do so wholeheartedly. God knows we have seen these things a thousand times before, but BGHS at least gets brownie points for combining it all into one moe-infused, yuri baiting, grade A voice actress package.
The bigger issue for BGHS moving forward, however, will be the characters. Such a large cast (~18 girls, not including teachers) will make learning names a joy in of itself, but at least we have those handy dandy archetypes to expedite the process. The key though will be the fleshing out because one way or another BGHS will need some form of standout character for any sort of strength. Besides
best main girl Miki (Suzaki Aya) and her bubbly complexion, there’s a lot of options for a tragic basket case or courageous saviour, especially with the obvious rival in Misaki and her very likely dark past. While the tomboyish Subaru (Sakura Ayane) is a good bet for a run in with disaster, I quite hope it involves our eccentric club duo somehow though. Something about quirky introverts fighting against the shackles of society that makes me all giddy inside.
With this episode largely devoted to introductions, BGHS’ challenge is now actually producing a story. We all know where the Irousu threat is heading—the girls’ poor combat performance or the dream sequence wouldn’t be highlighted otherwise—and that some super serious sacrifices and acts of valour are coming, just not how, when, or with who. No matter the heavy paint by numbers approach being used, there’s still a few surprises BGHS could come up with yet. We may not see any ridiculous and demented story twists here, but hey, you never know. Just have to wait and see how this little adventure unfolds. After some training of course.
OP: 「ホシノキズナ」 (Hoshi no Kizuna) by Hoshimori