April 5th, 2015.
I really liked how meaty the sounds in this show are, my subwoofer really came in handy in the opening sequence as the horses charged. The music and sound effects are all very well done, but the balance is a bit too loud compared to the voice, which is annoying, and relatively common these days.
I liked the arabic architecture. The people seem way too fair skinned for the environment in which they live, but I guess it makes sense with a major mercantile route. The CGI was not the best, but not terrible, except for when they actually had CGI people from relatively close by moving, man, that was absolutely terrible.
The faces, especially of Arslan and the Lusitanian boy, show Arakawa’s touch, looking like the Elric brothers from Fullmetal Alchemist, and the comic faces in particular. The king father was drawn to contrast the queen, soft versus harsh lines, and their colouring as well.
ED – There’s no reason for me to not like this song, but I don’t like it. I don’t dislike it, but it’s just there. I really like the graphics in its early section, the stylized depiction of the characters.
Plot / Theme:
Well, this was nice. The prince is anything but heroic, and it’s obvious we’re going to tell the story of him “growing up”, growing to understand the world. We even had the white-haired grizzled veteran tutoring him. It’s nice we’ve had a three year time-skip, to help things progress along. There’s nothing really special to be said of plot/themes thus far for the most part, as it’s pretty standard.
Except for the bit where Arslan tells his newfound captor-friend that he’s not internally consistent, “Everyone can be equal under our faith! So we will kill everyone who doesn’t belong to our faith, as they are worth less, and stop us from spreading our equality!” Pointing out this contradiction that is actually present in many “benevolent philosophies” was important.
Arslan is basically the crown Prince of an ancient Greek city, where everyone gets to lead prosperous and cultured lives! Of course, “everyone” refers to the citizens, not the slaves, and it is the slaves who enable people to live in this manner. That’s also one reason “sentient robots” are so interesting a topic, because we can accept “slaves” have equal rights to us, but how are robots with souls any different?
The characters were mostly tropey, the interactions seemed alright, but there’s not much to say. This was the first episode, and we’ll see where this epic tale takes us, as it seems things will change drastically in the upcoming episodes – this is the setup, so we’ll know what was lost, and what was discarded, as Arslan grows.