First Impressions – Dog Days

They’re fighting like cats & dogs in Fronyald – quite literally. The premiere of Dog Days is an interesting one, but the show is not at all what I expected.

All you need to know about the creative team behind this is that it’s the original Nanoha group, minus season one director Shinbo – studio, writer, staff. In part because of that that and in part because of the somewhat silly place and character names (the warring kingdoms are Galette and Biscotti, and the major characters are all named for pastries) I was expecting this to be a mahou shounen series, and perhaps a parody of the genre. That it’s something quite different altogether is a bit of a disappointment for me. In fact, the hero isn’t really magical at all and the first episode was played rather straight.

There’s a blockbuster cast here – big names across the board from Norio Wakamoto to waifu Yui Horie as the Princess of Biscotti. Mamoru Miyanu sounds way too old for Shinku, the middle-school hero – and frankly, I’m not a huge fan to begin with – and maybe that’s part of the reason I found him to be rather bland and boring. He’s an English boy studying in Japan – blonde, athletic, good looking – so far, not a quirk in sight. All of the characters are pretty generic, in fact, despite the marquee talent behind them.

The premise is sort of interesting – in this little fantasy world no one actually gets hurt when there’s a war, andf the wars even have color commentary. When defeated the warriors turn (back?) into little cats (Galette) or Dogs (Biscotti) and the two sides agree that no injuries are to be allowed Apparently Biscotti has been on quite a losing streak, though, and with another loss might lose their castle. Thus, Princess Biscotti summons a hero from our world – none other than Shinku.

One episode is way too early to judge a series, especially one with this much talent behind it. But I’ll need to see some color here if I’m going to watch or even blog it – so far, everyone in the show is distressingly plain. There’s time for that to change – we’ll see.

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