Random Curiosity

Kemono Friends 2 – 01 »« Girly Air Force – 01

Endro~! – 01

「エンドロールにはまだ早い〜!」 (Endorooru ni wa Mada Hayai〜!)
“It’s Still Too Soon for the End Roll~!”

The End—and then start again.

Endro~! is one of the winter series that I, Stilts, was personally most interested in. I use that term deliberately; I didn’t necessarily think it would be the best (though neither was I expecting something bad; it’s pedigree is quite good), I was just most intrigued by it. It has all the appearances of a solid slice-of-life series, and Studio Gokumi is good at those, but as I noted, “…the last time Studio Gokumi released an original anime that had something to do with heroes, it turned out rather different than we expected.” With the first episode on the books, do we have standard slice-of-life, Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru redux, or something else?

It’s hard to say, but what is clear is that it’s not following any one script thus far. Th episode starts out with the Yuusha’s party fighting and then defeating the Demon Lord, and then we get the End card. So, uh? Guess we’re done? But then we’re back in time (as we later learn) with the Hero Team before they were the Hero Team, and that’s where it gets interesting. The Demon Lord is now Mao-chan-sensei (Kuno Misaki), and teaching a class at the Adventurer School that includes “classless” hero girl Yuuria “Yusha” Chardiet (Akao Hikaru), priest girl Ellenoar “Seira” Seiran (Natsukawa Shiina), warrior girl Fai Fai (Ozawa Ari), and mage girl Mather “Mei” Enderstto (Minase Inori). And suddenly it’s a cute-girls-doing-cute-things anime, only Mao-chan-sensei is trying to defeat the Hero Team before their realizing it, which backfires. Where is this going?

I’m getting ahead of myself. More immediately important is, whatever this series is trying to be, is it doing it well? So far, yes! The conceit of the first episode leads to some off pacing, but once the score becomes clear (to us, at least—Yusha and her party still have no clue), it moves along naturally. The characters are also vibrant and lively, if not exactly deep. (This is acting like a CGDCT anime, even if it maybe isn’t in the end.) The animation, character designs, and color palette are also all lovely, and while none of the seiyuu are knocking my socks off yet (honestly, Misaki Kuno can get annoying in “uber stuffy loli” mode, but she’s good at disarming arrogance, so she’s selling it best so far), they’re all largely fine. So far, I’d watch another couple of episode easily just because what’s happening is nice. That’s a good start, if nothing else.

But back to the original question: What is this series, exactly? Because I see paths forward which could end in something amazing, or something serviceable but ultimately predictable, albeit perhaps not predictable in the expected way (not clichéd, in other words). Mao-chan-sensei sends the hero party off to get expelled, and they come back with the Hero’s sword—is Mao-chan-sensei training them? Did she do it the first time around? Are they destined to do this forever? If so, this could become rote, albeit in an unexpected manner. Or it could smooth out into a squishy cute-girls-doing-cute-things slice-of-life series in earnest. Or it could do something else. After all, the first episode has already proven itself to be something other than expected, and there’s the matter of Yuuki Yuuna. What will it be?

I don’t know. But I’ll definitely be watching to find out!

My second novel, Freelance Heroics, is available! (Also available: Firesign #1 Wage Slave Rebellion.) Third book in progress now! Sign up for my email list for updates. At stephenwgee.com, the last two posts: Celebrities’ Political Opinions, An Author’s Review of: Freelance Heroics.

 

OP Sequence

OP: 「えんどろ~る!」 (Endoro~ru!) by Akao Hikaru, Natsukawa Shiina, Ozawa Ari, Minase Inori

Preview

January 14, 2019 at 2:22 am
10 comments »
  • January 14, 2019 at 4:06 amWanderer

    I’m placing my bet on this being a stable time loop. I expect it to mostly follow this formula of Mao-chan-sensei trying to defeat the hero team before they can become heroes, only to have it backfire and end up helping them become better heroes every time. There will probably be a few episodes that won’t foloow that formula just to keep things from getting stale, but I expect that should mostly cover it.

    • January 14, 2019 at 5:18 ammac65

      Yeah, I kinda agree with that. Although, I suspect Mao’s redemption might be
      a fun possibility just for a twist to the series. Of course, no one suspects
      Mao-chan-sensei is the defeated Demon Lord, and every plot she undertakes
      backfires resulting in some super-powerful artifact being discovered that
      helps the hero become the hero. Looks like an entertaining ride…

  • January 14, 2019 at 5:45 amJeffers

    Sakura Chiyo, Kaoroku Moeta and Rem in one show? OH YES PLEASE. I could say while it is not comparable to other anime airing this season, IT IS DEFINITELY A FUN ANIME. and FUN is ALWAYS GOOD. i could say if you have nothing to watch anymore for the season but want to add a title, consider this anime, it will not fail to entertain you.

    • January 15, 2019 at 1:07 pmBROOKLYN otaku

      Fun IS indeed always good! Im taking your reccomendation my good sir!

  • January 14, 2019 at 5:50 amAex

    Personally I hope this stays a lighthearted and zany adventure romp throughout the story. Something like… Mao tries to trick the girls, hilarity ensues when the girls pull off something ridiculous and get stronger(each girl gets a turn, of course), girls become even more fond of Mao because they *think* she’s just doing her best to train them, power of friendship and fluffy sparkles breaks Mao down by the end and she helps them make sure they don’t loop again and they make sure she doesn’t disappear with “real” Demon Lord.

    Profit.

  • January 14, 2019 at 6:40 amSMinstrel

    What is Chaos from Comic Girls doing here? This is already my best CGDCT anime this season lol.

  • January 14, 2019 at 7:26 amewok40k

    I like that color palette… if you know what I mena.

  • January 14, 2019 at 11:13 amWorldwidedepp

    Alone from the Screenshots you can see the “sugar” and Moe

    I put it on my curiosity list

  • January 16, 2019 at 6:18 amIncognito

    https://randomc.net/image/Endro/Endro%20-%2001%20-%20Large%2024.jpg
    Ababababababa… It’s as if Yuuria and Kaoruko were separated at birth.

    https://randomc.net/image/Endro/Endro%20-%2001%20-%20Large%2020.jpg
    From evil Demon Lord to…cute Demon Loli… XD Also a textbook example of “Evil is petty” (trope).

    Endro~!…definitely a fun, lighthearted fantasy anime, even though KonoSuba‘s still ahead comedy-wise. It does make up for it with the occasional yuri, though.

  • January 19, 2019 at 12:17 pmmac65

    Ep 2 :: Well, that was a short series! Beat the Bunny Sempai by 1 episode!

    Great comedic watch!