It’s here, it’s blue, and it is AWESOME~
Hoshi: Have my eyes deceived me? I literally have been waiting for this since the announcement first appeared. It has been MONTHS that I’ve been on the edge of my seat, waiting for this glorious anime to finally premiere which left me to agonizingly count the very days left. But now, after tantalizing streaming ads and promos, it. is. HERE. After rolling on the floor in intense excitement (don’t ask), it’s time to present one of the most anticipated animes of the season!
Kyokai: OMG. It’s here. It’s finally here! I have been waiting for this anime since I caught up to the manga. From the pilot run (The Miyama-Uguisu Mansion Incident) to the real serialization, I have followed the progress of Katou Kazue and have liked the pacing of Ao no Exorcist till now. Of course, the premise is nothing new but it has some twists of its own and the characters are what make it golden.
Hoshi: And what sort of characters make it golden? Well one is our main protagonist, Rin Okumura, who is first seen after punching a kid in the face for some unknown reason. He winds up in a confessional, giving his excuses to the exorcist, and also his guardian, Shiro.
And you thought all priests were calm…
After Rin gets a firm scolding from getting fired from yet another job, we are introduced to his younger twin brother Yukio, the more studious one with great grades and an incoming high school student at True Cross Academy. He ends up treating his older brother’s wounds, and is told the reason why Rin ended up in a fight.
Suddenly two guys from the abbey come in with a part time job offer at a mall (or market, really). They even have called in for an interview and lend him a suit and shoes. He has no choice but to go to the interview, where the manager already has a difficult task for him to complete.
Just as Rin thinks he’s finally finished, he trips and the last box flys out of his hands, and onto the manager. Thus begins a series of disheartening mistakes that nearly cost him the prospect of getting this job. In one last attempt, Rin manages to create a tasty dish that attracts customers. The manager tries it and finally gives him the job.
After giving the good news to everyone at the abbey, he comes upon a little girl, who was at the church earlier, chasing after her scarf. Rin manages to grab hold of it, but he suddenly realizes a small creature is hanging on the end. It manages to get free and runs into the market with Rin chasing after it. The creature lands on tall stack of boxes by the little girl, which causes them to collapse on top of her. Rin tries to protect her, but she still ends up getting injured.
It becomes late in the evening and Rin still hasn’t come back from work. The boys of the abbey decide to look for him, and Yukio ends up finding him sitting on a swing set, where Rin also tells him that he got fired. They head back to the abbey and there at the door is the little girl’s, Yui’s, father who was waiting to thank him for saving her.
The next morning, Rin wakes up to see tons of small, black creatures floating around outside. However, it seems that no one even notices them, and to top if off, the guy he punched the day before comes by to talk to him, and has a lot of the black creatures hovering over him for some reason.
It turns out the guy only wanted to pay Rin to keep him quiet about the whole incident, but being our diligent hero, he refuses. The guy takes it a step too far though and starts insulting Yukio, which causes Rin to punch him again. But now it seems even Rin stepped over the line as the guy suddenly transforms into demon The guy’s friends, unable to see the changes Rin sees, hold him down as the other gets a hot pipe to burn him with.
As he gets close, Rin lets out a yell and suddenly blue flames explode from him. The guy, now demon, tells him that they are a sign of the Devil’s offspring, and he holds out his hand to Rin. Yet before Rin can do anything, Shiro makes his sudden appearance. He takes down the guy and exorcises the demon from him.
Figuring out Rin can now see them, Shiro tells them that black creatures are Coal Tar, which hang onto dust and gather around evil humans and dark places. He then tells of two dimensions that face each other, our world being called Assiah, and the other, the world of nothingness of demons, Gehenna. They are separate worlds that shouldn’t be interacting with each other, but they, the demons, start possessing the material things of our world and interact. Now with this incident with the guy, they have apparently found out who Rin is, and will now hunt him down. Confused, Rin asks what he is. Shiro says that he is not human, that he is the child of a demon born of a human. Not any demon though, Rin is in fact Satan’s child. (-inserts dramatic music-)~
Kyokai: Hiroyuki Sawano has done the music and yes he doesn’t have a lot of work to show. I could only pick at Sengoku Basara and yes, I loved JAP by Abingdon Boys School, but I didn’t much expect from music. The only thing I can say though is that BGM is better than the ED. And I can only hope that UVERworld’s “Core Pride” OP lives up to its expectation to air next episode.
Hoshi: Being an anime and Kpop fan, seeing Kpop artists
take over enter the Japanese music market is quite exciting, and even more exciting when it’s now possible that they’re original Japanese songs can be anime openings and endings. BUT, I guess I was wishing too broadly and ended up having my most hated Kpop group, 2PM (sorry to all you 2PM fans out there) sing the Ending song to my most anticipated anime of the season. Talk about bittersweet! I’m not even going to dare myself to catch even a note of that song (it’s a fangirl pride thing; I know it’s incredibly silly) but animation wise, I do have to say…I enjoyed it a bit. While it is a bit plain with just the viewer being taken on what seems like a ride through the city, I did like how they added in the characters on screens to the side. Hopefully the OP is a lot more exciting. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll actually listen to the ED song, but as of now, my Kpop fangirl side says ‘No’ with a fiery background to it.
- Coming from the Director of Darker than Black and Wolf’s Rain, Tensai Okamura can actually be a tensai of adaptations. I already have high hopes for this anime. Even after being up to date with manga, the first episode did not feel like right off the manga. The anime holds its own pacing and I’m liking what I’m seeing.
- Ryouta Yamaguchi has done the series composition, with a known record Cowboy Bebop, One Piece and Ranma ½ are just to name a few. If you get that shounen, action feel coming from this guy, you are spot on.
Hoshi: I’m not very big on voice actors unless it’s you know, Hiroshi Kamiya, because he’s the only seiyuu I was actually not so lazy to check out, so Kyokai has helped out on giving this list. I have to say, there are some great seiyuus working on Ao no Exorcist! A lot of them have turned out to have some pretty notable roles that I didn’t even know about, which further shows my lack of seiyuu knowledge. As for the characters revealed in this first episode, their voices to do sync well with their characters, so I have high hopes for the rest of the character voices who have yet to be revealed~.
- Rin Okumura – Main protagonist & son of Satan: Voiced by Nobuhiko Okamoto (Eiji from Bakuman, Usui from Maid-sama!, need I say more?)
- Yukio Okumura – Main protagonist, Rin’s twin brother & an Exorcist: Voiced by Jun Fukuyama (Please, how can you NOT know?)
- Shirō Fujimoto – Guardian of Rin and Yukio: Voiced by Keiji Fujiwara (Russo from Baccano!, Hughes from FMA, Village Chief from Arakawa…wait, WHAT? REALLY?)
- Not revealed yet:
- Mephisto Pheles – Voiced by Hiroshi Kamiya (Oh, I can hear the fangirl screams already, mine being one of them of course~)
- Shiemi Moriyama – Voiced by Kana Hanazawa (Oh, I can hear the fanboy grunts already…)
- Ryūji Suguro – Voiced byKazuya Nakai (Date Masamune from Sengoku Basara and tons more notable roles I can’t even count)
- Konekomaru Miwa – Voiced by Yuuki Kaji (Oh hey! Finny from Kuroshitsuji, Walker from Durarara!!, Akina from Yozakura Quartet)
- Renzō Shima – Voiced by Koji Yusa (Lau from Kuroshitsuji, Iku from Starry Sky; not many big roles from this guy yet)
- Shura Kirigakure – Voiced by Rina Satou (Mikoto from Toaru Kagaku no Railgun, Negi from Negima!)
- Izumo Kamiki – Voiced by Eri Kitamura (Sayaka from Maho Shojo Madoka Magica, Saya from Blood+)
- Igor Neuhaus – Voiced by Ryotaro Okiayu (Oh man, this guy has been around for a long time! So many old anime and lead castings I can’t even…!)
- Amaimon – Voiced by Tetsuya Kakihara (Simon from Gurren Lagann, Tomoe from Kara no Kyokai movie series, which I’m mentioning because we all know why, heh) – Kyo-approved :3
Hoshi: A-1 YOU HAVE REDEEMED YOURSELVES. Mother freaking redeemed yourselves; Oh I cannot contain my excitement! I was extremely worried about A-1 handling Ao no Exorcist after the fail that was Togainu no Chi, but oh man my worries have basically flown out the window. Never have I in my entire Anime-watching career have I ever said that an anime’s first episode was one of the best…until today. I may be extraordinarily biased because I absolutely love the manga, but how can you not at least say that this has been one of the best first episodes? The animation is just amazing, stunning to me, really. Dare I say it’s even better than Kuroshitsuji’s! (/shot by my own conscious). They kept the character designs well, and the amazing seiyuus, of course, fit them perfectly, though I did imagine Rin’s voice to be a little less deep. I have high hopes for the battle scenes, which I’m hoping will come soon. I also loved the opening sequence with the priests and the first appearance of the blue flames. It was immensely entertaining.
For some reason, I find Rin a lot more sexy than Yukio in the anime. I mean, when I was reading the manga, I went, “MEGANE SPOTTED. INSTANT FAVORITE”. Yet, now that they’re all animated and moving around, I’ve grown a sudden attraction to Rin. I’m not sure if it’s that body and those clothes or that fiery temper but man, Rin is now my favorite boy of the spring season. We shall see how this goes once I see Yukio in his exorcist outfit, heheheh.
I don’t feel like I can really judge the pacing on the anime compared to the manga juuust yet, but this first episode actually ended well with that bomb of “You are Satan’s child!”. I expected them to fit it all into the first episode, but instead they added the scenes with him at the market, which I actually didn’t mind. It was pretty entertaining, and added on to my sudden attraction for Rin. So far, Ao no Exorcist definitely doesn’t disappoint, and while I think this first episode is great, I know for sure next week’s episode will be even better because we’ll get more action as Satan is possibly introduced, and we’ll hear Hiroshi Kamiya as freaking Mephisto!
And did I mention that the background music for every scene is AWESOME?? I mean, seriously! The violin sounds soooo smooth and perfect, I can actually watch the anime again and again just for the sake of the music. I would love to get the music sheet of it so I can practice it with my violin. I’m so taking the OST of this anime. But too bad the singer of the ED is 2PM. 2PM < ANYTHING. Anyhow, Ao no Exorcist looks pretty awesome to me, and it’s in my Must-Watch list of Anime Spring.
Foshizzel: Whoa! This was a lot of fun to watch kind of wish I had a opening song but that will be next week. Rin’s character is interesting kind of the “troublemaker” always getting into random fights and generally has very poor luck, I had to laugh a bit during his job at the store LOL such misfortune. Then you have Yukio his brother the total opposite as Rin, kind of reminds me of my brother, I tend to be random and crazy while he is more normal I guess.
Hime: HHHNNNNNGGGG…..DAT VOICE. DEM MOLES. THAT BROTHERLY LOVE. Oooooh Yukio’s going to be my BBF this season, I can just tell. It’s criminal that Jun Fukuyama isn’t in more this season. There was a time when he was everywhere, and I needed an oxygen mask to just get through the day. But I digress, Rin is the hero of Blue Exorcist and damn if he ain’t a sweet one, too. I love the interactions between him and the Father,Yukio and the rest of the cast. Rin has such a great personality, it’s really enjoyable to watch. He really reminds me of Oga from Beelzebub; tough guy exterior with a heart of gold.
While the humour is a bit hit and miss, the real downside was the animation. Aside from the bad CGI towards the end it was very standard. Once we really start getting into the meat of the story I hope it will ramp up, cause I really like the style itself. I love demons/exorcists and everything ghostly, and it made me laugh but the exorcisms are exactly like the ones in Supernatural. The ED song is also really catchy and fun, I can’t wait to see the OP.
One of the most anticipated animes of the Spring seasons lives up to the hype in this first episode IMO.
Kyokai: After a long wait, I finally get an anime that had no disappointing factors. Well, except for the 2PM thing but I’ll let that slide. When you have good manga art, you always become anxious about the adaptation and how your favourite characters would look. Being all caught up in the story and knowing almost everyone on screen has its pitfalls of the plot being boring (something that I faced in Bakuman), but not for Ao-ex. I have been mildly surprised with how the first episode was so tightly paced. You can’t pinpoint one place where it slowed or had any kind of flaw.
Overall, I loved what I saw and A-1 Pictures has done another good job of adaptation. I would love it if this remains consistent because then a second season would be a total breeze. What to expect next? LOADS OF AWESOMENESS! Ja ne~
Shiro and Rin haven’t escaped from demon clutches yet! It looks like a battle is up along with the intense reappearance of Rin’s blue flames…and a sword? Plus, who is this new odd-looking, suspicious character? Until next week folks~!