Aldnoah Zero Episode 1 First Impressions

Aldnoah Zero Episode 1 (6)Rating: 4/5 curious clouds Crop_4 CloudsExcited Transparent

I don’t usually watch a lot of science-fiction or mecha anime when it comes to the seasonal shows. I’m pretty content with my class gundam series but recently I gave Aldnoah a try because it’s gotten some good hype.

I enjoyed the Aldnoah Zero pilot because it clearly sets up the premise, the world and the conflict. There was little dialogue and a lot of narration but like all great mecha shows, it starts with the big inter-plant conflict and then you get into the military/government branches and as you get more and more into the series world, it finally dives down into a micro perspective from the protagonist’s perspective.

“It truly is a lovely world. No matter how many times I see it, it takes my breath away…”

Aldnoah Zero Episode 1 (1)I LOVE LOVE LOVED the opening lines, so meaningful and dramatic, catch your attention right away and BAM you see the pretty princesss striving for peace. The episode is cleverly capped off by the princess’s hopes, bright and positive idealism and ends with the princess’s death, a flaming explosion to illustrate just how deep the strife between Earth and Mars runs. Man I really didn’t want to see the princess die at the end of episode 1 but I got the impression that her death is the catalyst for the ENTIRE series.

I feel like this will be one of those series with no exact “bad guy” or “good guy” side. Sure you’ll have some really corrupt characters on one hand and really heroic characters on the other, you’ll get discrepancies in both sides of good and evil (depending on who you side with). On Mars’ end, Slaine, the princess’s friend (and tutor? I believe), he wants peace but the higher-ups in Mars want to attack and conquer earth. On the Earth end, Inaho just doesn’t seem invested in any of the Earth-Mars politics.

Actually the most interesting and out-of-place scene in the episode is when Inaho sees the missile flying down to attack the princess’s limo. He is SO freaking calm about it. He doesn’t panic or really even react when he sees all that chaos erupt. Aldnoah Zero Episode 1 (3)Does violence just not faze him? – I feel like his reactions will tie into this back story (maybe). Inaho seems like a pretty bland character to be honest. Granted, this is only episode 1 and I have yet to see him in more intense situations.

The soundtrack is already PHENOMENAL. When episode 1 is ending and Mars is preparing to fire and beginning to fire missiles at earth, the soundtrack just jumps out at you and adds so much more emotion to the tense atmosphere. Part of episode 1’s impact are those final moments that take you to the heart of the fiery missile destruction and then jump over to these little kids thinking the missiles are shooting stars and wishing for peace. Juxtaposing both scenes was so brilliant of the writers and if you didn’t already catch on to the inherent conflict of the series, this last part threw a sucker punch right in your gut.

Aldnoah Zero Episode 1 (5)

As the credits are rolling, the ending song also leaves a really long lasting impression and its amazing because it’s sung by Kalafina. I seriously can’t wait to download it. Lots of great things about Aldnoah Zero this season. I highly recommend it for science-fiction, action, mecha fans.

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?


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