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 Wednesday, November 14, 2018
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» Cover

» Company
» Running Time
12 Episodes, 307 mins.
» Genre
Action, Mecha, Sci-Fi
» Type
TV Series
» Final Score
» User Rating
No user votes yet.

Knights Of Sidonia

» written by Wai Yung (Wayne) Chim [Discuss]

An original anime series about Nagate, a low-born youth in a society of genetically engineered humans, refugees that escaped the destruction of Earth one thousand years earlier and now occupy the massive ship Sidonia. When Nagate’s talent as a pilot is revealed he becomes one of Sidonia’s elite defenders against the Gauna, shapeshifting aliens bent on eliminating humans from existence. Based on the popular Japanese manga comic.

A Netflix original anime series? That was unexpected. Shidonia no Kishi or Knights of Sidonia was originally a manga series that was later adapted into anime by Polygon Pictures; which then brings us to the exclusive streaming rights on Netflix. Now that we got that out of the way, let’s get on with the review.

Knights of Shidonia is set in space, a thousand years after they have left Earth due to the Gauna invasion. Our main protagonist Nagate Tanikaze was raised in the underworld of Sidonia, never leaving for the surface and always practicing on his grandfather’s robot simulator. During the initial scenes, we get to see exactly what we should be expecting from the show. Fast mecha action scenes and some borderline gruesome animation… personally I find the disintegration of the Gauna stomach turning. But that’s just me. Anyways, as a result of Tanikaze being raised by his grandfather in the underworld (no, not your typical underworld), he did not receive the genetic manipulation the population received, and therefore gets hungry like any normal human being. On his way to search for food, he slips, falls and is captured by the Sidonia governing body. It is during his whole “booking” process that we find out more about Tanikaze and the current situation of Sidonia.

It has been a while since I was entertained by a mecha anime. Some of the mecha that I have come across lately are either boring or lacked focus in the machinery. Knights of Sidonia, does not lose sight of what it is. This show is about mecha action along with a story that grips even the casual viewer. Unlike a lot of other anime where the protagonist is often the very emotionally imbalanced type, who constantly searches for the right and wrong. Nagate Tanikaze is confident in his ability and performs the way that is instilled by his grandfather. While Tanikaze is a straightforward character, the majority of his peers are flip floppers. On the first day that he attends pilot school, he is looked down upon due to his status. After he does something impressive, his peers changed at an instant, only to change back and forth. This flip flopping in how other characters perceive Tanikaze kind of gets annoying after a while.

One thing you should not do, while you watch Knights of Sidonia, is fall in love with any characters. They could die in battle at a drop of a hat. I guess that is what makes this show so much more “realistic.” You see, these Gaunas are no joke. If we were playing a game, these mobs are way overpowered. Even Sidonia’s elite Garde teams do not make it back alive. The anime shows how emotions can deter one’s ability to fight in combat. From this display, one wrong move or hesitation can mean the life and death of the entire team.

The Breakdown:
Knights of Sidonia consists of one season, twelve episodes, with a second season in the works. Judging by that, the anime did a great job in getting as much out of the twelve episodes as it did. I was impressed at how the whole time I was watching, I never once thought this piece was dragging on or it was cutting things short. Maybe they should have extended the action scenes more, if that is one complaint that I have. Now do not expect to learn much about the origin of the Gauna? Maybe in season two; they are still a mystery here. There are signs that they are a sentient species as the show rolled on. But aside from speculation, nothing concrete is revealed.


» The Pros
It has been a while since I watched a good mecha anime. Can I consider Broken Blade 2014 as a recent anime? I already saw the OVAs years ago, so that's nothing new. Knights of Sidonia is completely new to me. It was refreshing. Unlike some mecha anime where the protagonist's personality is so indecisive and his own mind games get the best of him... Tanikaze knows what he is and what he is not, he is comfortable with himself and because of this, he saved a lot of viewers from the frustration of having to watch that drama.

» The Cons
I feel like the length of the show was a bit of a negative. There seems to be some loose ends because of that. The Gauna are pretty much like the buggers from Ender's Game. Not much about them is provided, other than the fact that one day, they just showed up and started destroying everything. Another example of the effects of the short series is the fact that Tanikaze's history was almost an afterthought. We find out what he really is later on, but it does not go beyond that.

» Animation
While some viewers might complain about the dirty, artificial looking scuff marks on the pilots' suits; I had no problem. If that is the one thing, anyone can point out that annoys them from the animation department, then that's saying something. I would like to point out that, these pilots are constantly being sortied out, so having pristine suits is probably the last of their priorities. Anyways, Knights of Sidonia looks good, it is not the best that I have seen, but it works. The mecha battles keeps you glued to your seat. It comes at viewers fast and hard. Conversely, the character animation at certain points of the show, does not feel as fluid to me.

» Sound
The theme songs from angela and Eri Kitamura were not memorable. I have not heard much from Eri Kitamura, but I have heard enough of angela's works to know they got some better stuff up their sleeves. Now as for the anime itself. Having a nice home theatre system definitely makes a world of difference. Obvious, I know. The character dialogues are precise and brings the series along smoothly.

» Story
We have been through this song and dance before. Earth is invaded by an alien race and the people must now move into space, split into many colonies and on occasion, fend off the aliens. I guess, it comes down to the delivery. Knights of Sidonia was entertaining. Right off the bat, this anime showed what it was about. If I had enough time, I would have completed the series in one sitting (I watched 10 episodes in the first sitting). There is nothing complicated about this piece. Just sit back, relax, and enjoy.

» Recommend
If you are an anime fan and subscribe to Netflix, I do not know why you would not try Knights of Sidonia. This show has a decent plot, a good group of characters... some dying rather prematurely, and the action is gripping. Some scenes happen so fast that if you blink at the wrong time, you might miss it. Also, while I nitpicked about the show's length, it is, in the end, just nitpicking. Twelve episodes were enough to bring the series from point A to B rather nicely.


» Other Information
Language: English/Japanese Dialogue Stereo Audio with English Subtitles.





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