I was clicking through YouTube the other day, procrastinating as usual when I uncovered this:
(Thank-you Iron Duck 666 for having such a good quality video ♥)
If you are anything like me then you would not be able to stop yourself delving into a world that had blue fire, two tailed cats, people with tails and a man in a funny white suit. If you are not like me… any human should still be curious enough to at least find out what it is.
Two weeks later I am owner of two disks and a free soundtrack of Ao No Exorcist. A week after that I have the four printed English manga and the next three (released in December, February and April) in my wish list.
Rin Okumura is a 15 year boy, older fraternal twin to Yukio. He is a dropout that gets into fights and they both live with their guardian Father Fujimoto at some monastery or other in Japan. However, turns out that the boys are the children of the demon lord Satan and a human mother and Satan wants his son in the demon realm Gehenna. Rin, oblivious to his lineage until a random moment when his power is too strong to be encased in a sword (not explained for quite some time, IE, last episode in series) is not too keen to go home to his daddy Satan and so enrols to be an Exorcist.
The rest is typical anime; Rin meets people, doesn’t get along straight away then becomes friends, then they find out his secrets, then everyone is scared and upset but then they get over it… OR DO THEY? In the human realm Assiah versus demon realm Gehenna world, can Satan’s son really live with exorcists that only want to kill him?
The fight scenes can seem underwhelming, as though Rin is an overlevelled character on a tutorial mode boss. You feel a dirty sense that it’s a cheat but for once in anime Ao No Exorcist is not about excessive fight scenes that last over several episodes, nor does it have the repetitive magical-girl syndrome of a ten-minute cutscene to build up power/ transform. It is just demon- fight- no demon. Pretty much.
However I would not count this against Ao No Exorcist, for the story is the most important aspect. The bonds and the emotions are what matter, which is the basis of the Game that will be coming out on PSP soon (so far only announced in Japanese, if only I had studied harder this past year I probably could play it).
The rest of the storyline is just as fast, everything seems to happen quickly and although the individual episode stories run with the overall plot they seem to counter what is supposed to happen and it all changes before you realise. You could say that it is unexpected and predictable simultaneously. An odd dual-nature to have but it is definitely enjoyable.
One important thing about the anime that I didn’t realise until I was several episodes in was that some of them continue after the credits, and it isn’t just funny scenes some of them are critical to the plot line.
The actual animation is fluid and pretty. I am a fan of talent and Ao No Exorcist is made 210% from it. Kazue Kato-San’s imagination just personifies my favourite aspects of Anime and Manga with the elegant style and extreme characteristics for expressions.
I also really like the idea of Bon’s character, which looks like your everyday bad-rebellious-kid (described as such by Rin as well) but is a actually nerd for exorcism- well the other characters call him serious, but I say nerd.
The Manga is as fast paced as the anime, if not faster in some places. I haven’t read a manga that has so many flash backs, and so it is intriguing reading through. It is almost as though you are reading through two storylines at once (I read a book like that once) yet Ao No Exorcist gives flashbacks to everyone so really it is like reading a twenty different times and still you have the ability to advance with the story.
The best part- well other than Mephisto- is probably the fantastic soundtrack. I already have it downloaded and the songs are my usual ‘walking themes,’ inspiring me to keep going on my hour long walks. My three favourites in order are the two opening and second ending.
- Uverworld- CorePride
- My World- RookieZ is Punk’D
- Wired Life- Meisa Kuroki
All of them have an uptempo beat shared with a mellow melody. Rising and Falling, like the hills on my walk.
I would recommend Ao No Exorcist to boys and girls. I may have scared off the male side earlier with my ‘storyline is important blah blah with emotions and cutesy blah,’ I apologise if I did. I should have worded it better. All I meant was it doesn’t have any kame hame ha length scenes but that doesn’t mean it has the ever wonderful Sailor Moon style ‘But I love everyone- and so save the day’ type finales. It is a good mid road but exciting adventure.
For only 25 episodes it definitely is worth watching, and I hope that there is a second series. [hinthinthint]
Oh and Kazue Kato-San if you ever perhaps hear about this… please tell me what Takara does.
Edit- Novemeber 1st
If you enjoyed this post then you will be excited to hear rumours of an Ao No Exorcist MOVIE being given the green light. If anybody knows when/where please comment ♥