The 2010s gave anime fans a revival of sorts for the magical girl genre. This can be attributed to shows like Madoka Magica which gave a darker more storybased spin on the usual girl meets talking animal and gets powers plot and was targeted towards an older demographic unlike Sailor Moon and Cardcaptor Sakura. Before long a new wave of sleeker storybased magical girl anime hit the scene some more obscure than others. Granbelm is one of these shows that spawned out of the shadow of Madoka but it fails to live up to the show that its so clearly inspired by. The story follows the story of the pinkhaired protagonist Mangetsu who on the night of a full moon is suddenly transmitted into Granbelm a battleroyale set in another world where girls fight eachother in massive magical mech suits. There Mangetsu meets the mysterious Shingetsu who tells her about the battle for unlimited magical power and they end up forming a team to fight in Granbelm. Without going into too many spoilers this shows plot is pretty weak and derivative. It borrows a lot of tropes from other anime without really putting any sort of creative spin on them other than cool big robot. There is a plot twist towards the end of the show that kind of shakes things up but by then theres not enough time to get deep into any character development so the twist ends up coming off as sort of fake deep. Speaking of character development this shows characters are probably its most lackluster feature. The protagonist features pretty much no unique qualities other than being naive and determined. Granted this could be explained by future revelations in the show that I wont spoil but it still doesnt make for a very interesting character. The same can be said for pretty much all of the other characters in the show they have very onenote uninteresting personalities that make it really hard for me to care about them in the slightest. Theres one girl whos only personality trait is screaming in anger like she doesnt have any sort of chill switch. The animation in this show is fine for the most part. Where it really fails is during the fight scenes where the show really just tries to throw out as much bright seizureinducing visual vomit as possible without really showing any dynamism or fluidity. Not all of the action scenes are bad but the ones that are are really difficult to follow due to the shows need to overload the screen with neon lasers and explosions every 12 seconds. Not to mention that the shows opening sequence blatantly rips off Neon Genesis Evangelion in several ways. The soundtrack is decent. It has some pretty tracks but its not anything too crazy. Overall this show just didnt really click for me. It just felt derivative to the point of losing almost all of its seriousness from the opening sequence to the shows resolution. There were aspects of it that showed promise but it ultimately failed at providing me with anything that I couldnt get out of Madoka Magica.
40 /100
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