First Impressions Digest – Fukumenkei Noise, ID-0

Fukumenkei Noise – 01

So, straight off, I have a couple of problems with Fukumenkei Noise.

  • One, all that “La, La, La” stuff was really annoying.
  • Two, I actually don’t think Hayami Saori is a very good singer.

Obviously, that second problem is a much bigger one than the first, since Hayami’s Nino is supposed to be some kind of raw animal rock goddess who sets the gym on fire when she takes the mic.  She’s not terrible but I think she just sounds kind of silly.  And it doesn’t help that the animation of her singing (especially the “La”s) is unintentionally hilarious with those big-eyed shoujo faces.

Apart from that, I thought Fukumenkei Noise was a pretty decent shoujo romance first episode – not great, not bad.  The setup looks like a classic triangle: genius musician Yuzu is in love with Nino (who he calls “Alice” for her family name, Arisugawa).  She loves Yuzu’s talent but romantically loves Momo, the megane boy who used to be her neighbor and moved away when they were in grade school.  And Momo loves…  Well- that we don’t know yet, apart from being surly and standoffish.  There’a also the former lead singer of the light music club (supplanted by Alice) who loves Yuzu in unrequited fashion.

This may turn out to be pretty decent drama, though I’m alway a bit cautious in romances with the “DRAMA!” is turned up so high in the first episode.  Fukumenkei Noise definitely isn’t the sort of series you can judge after one episode – it’s really going to impossible to get a read on it until I figure out whether these are characters I want to spend time with.  Right now, I’m nowhere near ready to answer that question, so let’s see what next week brings.

 

ID-0 – 01

There’s an interesting pedigree behind ID-0.  The director, Taniguchi Goro (Geass, Infinite Ryvius, Planetes) and writer Kuroda Yousuke (Onegai, Ano Natsu de Matteiru, Ryvius et al)  are old industry hands of considerable stature.  And both, especially Taniguchi (Planetes seems to be the closest anime analog to ID-0), should be ideally suited to this sort of theme and genre.

But, somehow, ID-0 doesn’t really work – at least not yet for me.  I found the premiere rather stilted and the dialogue and acting (and this is an all-star cast) pretty ham-fisted.  And it’s a given that the CGI is an eyesore (newsflash: CGI still sucks for character animation) for the more intimate scenes.  Main heroine Mikuri Maya plays as a generic airhead, and the supporting cast as familiar archetypes rather than distinctive characters.

While we’ve certainly seen the whole rough-edged salvage crew adventuring through space thing before (it’s one of sci-fi anime’s most-used chestnuts), it can certainly have charm when executed well.  Sadly, the evidence is that ID-0 isn’t, but with so much experience and talent behind it, I feel like I owe it one more chance to prove the mediocre premiere was a fluke.

 

 

 

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7 comments

  1. S

    Nino is not a rock goddess from the start just like in the manga, instead of singing she is actually just screaming her heart out with messy performance, I think Hayami is a very good singer to can sing badly like that but some people can still fell the force in her performance, that rough and raw singing style are actually fit with this genre, in the middle there is part when she sings normally it feels nice.

    Her la la la like that is acapella style, I don’t find it annoying

    My problem with this is just teribble CG

  2. Any plans to give SukaSuka a watch?

  3. I thought about it for about 12 seconds. If I weren’t so busy, maybe, but honestly it looks like a combo of LN and CGDCT elements that I generally don’t mesh well with.

  4. J

    My impressions were actually quite different. I liked the first episode and felt the writing was fine for introductory purposes with enough hints of ambition beneath an otherwise standard sequence of events. It’s still a genre work at heart and there are a series of typical conventions that come with it, don’t get me wrong, but I don’t see that as an inherently bad thing.

    Then again, as a fan of Taniguchi’s previous works, I also know the way he tends to pace and structure his stories can be different than how younger and/or more famous directors handle things. With few exceptions, he doesn’t reveal all of the big cards up his sleeve right away. Both Planetes and Infinite Ryvius (not to mention even Code Geass) ultimately went to several places that weren’t immediately obvious during the first episode or even the first entire arc, unless you really knew how to read between the lines (easier in retrospect than at the time of broadcast). Something similar can be said about Kuroda as a scriptwriter and knowing how his writing style works best in sci-fi series gives me a decent amount of confidence.

    The very basic concept behind ID-0 has been used before, indeed, yet not too recently or every other season. In fact, I’d say it feels relatively fresh for me precisely because most mecha or sci-fi series made these days aren’t really following that mold. I am also not against sci-fi series which want to directly or indirectly address ideas like mind transfer that, while also explored before, aren’t even half as commonplace or exhausted as the usual “war is hell” narratives that Gundam keeps going back to (outside of Build Fighters). What’s important, at least for me, is exactly what you want to do with the concept and how well you accomplish it in practice, rather than the simple fact someone else has approached the topic before.

    Considering this is an action/adventure-oriented space-based series set in a larger-than-life context instead of an explicitly realistic or down-to-earth portrayal of the universe, I thought the acting and dialog in ID-0 were both fine for the subject matter. I can more or less understand some of your other points, even if I may not share them, but I don’t see what else you could want or expect there.

    This isn’t remotely supposed to be Gundam, much less Planetes since that didn’t stray too far from our current world. ID-0 feels closer to projects like Outlaw Star, Space Adventure Cobra, Space Dandy or other relatively “soft” o moderate sci-fi series of that nature, just with a little more attention paid to the central concepts at the core of the setting, because presumably that will be important for the rest of the story.

    In this respect, the concept of I-machines was handled well enough by taking us through Maya’s perspective. I thought the storyboarding of the earlier sequences was pretty good in that regard too. In particular, there’s also a number of lines which seem to be possible thematic foreshadowing for later events. While there are several standard quips and the like, the script for the first episode seemed quite efficient in my eyes and didn’t waste too much time.

    I am neither strongly in favor nor strongly against 3DCGI, personally speaking, so I’ll just remark it seems equal or arguably moderately better than what other recent series (like Berserk) are doing with the technology on a TV budget. Admittedly, some specific shots or sequences work better than others though. I did wish a few details were tweaked. But it’s also worth pointing out that, given the fact most of the screen time is given to robots, there was some decent body language from a few of those mechanical organisms.

    In any case…I might be missing something, but practically every single anime series uses familiar archetypes as a starting point. The question is what, if anything, they do with them down the line. Not to mention that a well-executed archetype is, at least for my money, better than a poorly handled and unnecessarily complex character. In this case, we all know Maya appears to be a so-called “airhead” but I didn’t think her behavior was out of line for someone her age and in that sort to situation. Now, if the story doesn’t do anything to develop that, sooner or later, I’ll agree with your complaint. I think the opposite is more likely to happen. They already had Id (the blue ninja fellow) point out she was quite naive about how people can exploit knowledge for personal gain.

    I realize this is getting too long, but I will conclude by saying that looking up some non-obvious information on the series tends to suggest that yes, things will get more interesting rather than less later on. Whether you’ll want to stick with it until then is another matter.

  5. z

    Sorry for hijacking, but I second the suggestion to check out Sukasuka, Enzo.

    Rather than a Light Novel, it felt more like a Kinetic (Linear) Light Novel adaptation. Pretty melancholic, almost entirely exposition-dump free, great music selection, solid execution, and written with a definite ending in mind. Possibly including typical weakness of them as well (e.g Weak slice of life portion, might be melodramatic in the future, some unnecessary heroines although it only has one primary heroine). The cold protagonist x sweet human-weapon girl pairing might reminds you of some other tragedy shows like Planetarian or Saikano.

    So yeah, if that sounds like your slice of pie (or at least something that you could tolerate), you might want to check it out.

  6. z

    Whoops sorry, I meant “Kinetic Visual Novel” not Light Novel.

  7. J

    I also felt unknowing with Fukumenkei Noise. On one hand I liked some of the songs and a good old fashioned shoujo, but on the other, it felt a bit fast paced with barely any room left to breathe (or play instruments…. I tried to make a joke). I’m going to stick with it just to see how it goes. Although I’m glad that Nino is recognized as “raw” instead of a perfectly natural singer. Designs are interesting and like the mains. Hopefully we get a better insight on what the plot is about.

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