First Impressions Digest – ēlDLIVE, Chain Chronicle: Haecceitas no Hikari

ēlDLIVE – 01

ēlDLIVE comes to us through Studio Pierrot from the pen of Amano Akira of Katekyou Hitman Reborn! (which gets an Easter egg in the premiere).  Reborn! was one of those series I always thoughts I should like more than I did – I know the manga is extremely popular and it’s an interesting premise, but I tried the anime a couple of times and it just never clicked with me.  ēlDLIVE is pretty new for an anime (about three years) and I know it’s not as popular as Reborn! was, but there was something in the look and description that made me think it was worth at least a flyer.

I don’t imagine this show is going to be especially popular either – it feels old-school for a number of reasons.  I quite like Amano’s character designs and the overall look of her art, and Pierrot is (as usual) pretty faithful, but there’s no denying both manga and studio have a tendency towards the old-fashioned visual style.  The premise here is also very 1997, with a young boy struggling to fit in whisked away to serve in an intergalactic police force which also happens to include the tsuntsun girl he’s crushing on.

But you know, I rather liked ēlDLIVE.  I think whether one does will depend on their openness to the idea that “dated” can be a compliment in the right context.  There’s an innocence and silliness to this setup that I rather like, and middle-schooler Kokonose Chuuta (Murase Ayumu – and it’s hard to imagine anyone else in the role) is more interesting that your normal lead in this sort of show.  He talks to himself, which understandably makes him a bit of a social pariah, but he has a good reason – the voice in his head (Kugimiya Rie – again, hard to imagine anyone else here) actually exists.  It belongs to a cute little alien that will eventually reveal itself later in the episode.

As for the police angle, the master computer “Mother” has picked out Chuuta as a prime candidate because it detected the presence of the “Monitalien” inside him.  How much staying power any of this is going to have I can’t say, but I thought it worked quite well for an episode at least – the humor worked most of the time, there are some good sight gags, and the supporting cast has enough variety to potentially be interesting.  Given orphan Chuuta’s connection to his ditzy but loving aunt I imagine he’s going to split his life between (ab)normal schoolboy and space cop.  Imagine ToLoveRU without most of the ecchi (even the pants look the same) and a younger and more self-aware protagonist and I think you’re pretty close to ēlDLIVE.


Chain Chronicle: Haecceitas no Hikari – 01

I didn’t watch any of the prior incarnations of Chain Chronicle, a game adaptation which has already had a multi-episode OAV version.  So I came into this series cold, kind of treating this show as a flyer.  I love fantasy and I’m always willing to give sword and sorcery RPG adaptations a chance, though anime seems to have fallen into rather a rut with them lately – most of them look and sound virtually indistinguishable from each other and the ones that don’t (like Grimgar) have other serious problems that are deal-breakers for me.

Unfortunately Chain Chronicle pretty much fell into the first category for me.  I got bored with it pretty quickly to be honest – I was loving Ohtsuka Akio’s bravura as the Black King, but apart from that no one and nothing in the premiere struck me as particularly interesting.  There are a lot of human and demi-human characters who fall into intensely familiar boxes, some violence, some light gore and fanservice, a bunch of middling CGI.  It was pretty much assembly-line as far as I could tell from one episode.  I’ll try one more, but I’m not seeing a whole lot of reason for optimism with this one.




  1. eIDLIVE was an odd experience for me for some reason (and not because of the old school material, look, etc.). Not bad, just somehow unexpected and curiously quirky, I guess? After it was over I thought “Well then! That was … uhh … certainly a thing? I think I kinda liked it, but I wonder if it is clicking with me or if it is good? O.o ”

    And after a few hours I have settled on “I think I will watch the second episode after all – if nothing else I may get some further clarity on the two left elbow experience I had with the first episode!” ^^

  2. “Curiously quirky” sort of works for me, too. There is something odd about this show that I find kind of appealing, but who knows if it’ll work out that way.

  3. z

    I understand that Chain Chronicle’s anime plot is an original work, taking place right after Part 1 of the game – a new experience for seasoned players. It’ll be interesting to see what they do with it, especially with an original character like Aram.

    PS. Assassin’s Creed the Anime, anyone? Hopefully Aram does better than that mess with Fassbender.

  4. Y

    Leave it to Amano Akira to come up with all these interesting alien designs and weird details (“Yoyosa!”). That’s also what made Reborn special to me. Amano sensei has a way of ticking off all the boxes of shounen while throwing in twists of her own.

    Although I enjoyed Reborn (perhaps not the first cour) and this first episode of elDlive , I’m kind of worried because I’m seeing some potential flaws (which were inherent in Reborn as well) that may surface as the show goes on:
    -the possibility of losing watchers from repetitive elements in the alien-of-the week
    -flat female characters (the female characters in Reborn were mostly underdeveloped and archetypes)…I’m especially worried about Misuzu’s character

    But who knows, maybe Amano-sensei has level-upped and none of these worries will be of concern.
    Or perhaps even with the above flaws, the pros (and there seems to be a lot to like so far) will weigh over the cons.

  5. Chain Chronicle bores me to death. It seems that it was written for a very small community, i.e. people who have played the mobile game up until the end of the first story. That is a very wrong move. I believe that a good story shouldn’t start with a whole bunch of people without proper introduction or back story.
    I wonder if you watched Youjo Senki. I like the first episode. I was bored with a brash, upright and honest protagonist, which can’t be helped since they are written for teenagers. This protagonist was different. She killed her enemies without batting an eye. She killed her disobedient subordinates without dirtying her own hands.

  6. I just saw episode 1 of elDLive and I liked it. Liked Chain Chronicle as well.I’m a sucker for teen aged sci-fi series (like ToLoveRu).and a Kugimiya Rie fan as well (Happy from Fairy Tail, Shana, etc…).

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