Summer 2016 First Reactions: Manly Fridays (Berserk, 91 Days, and Thunderbolt Fantasy)

I have noticed that a lot of people have already done these, but I like waiting for two or three episodes of each show have come out before making first reactions of anything.  So, with no further to do, let’s dig into this a little bit.

Berserk (2016)

I think we all know what the biggest complaint of this show is so far.  The CG.  Honestly, I think it’s alright when characters are moving around and not much detail is necessary.  When the show stops a moment to focus on something like a character’s face, or a demonic horse, or a lot of other creatures, then it’s pretty easy to spot out how garbage it is.  I don’t think that Berserk will be animated like longtime fans would like it to be, so they get this instead.  Pretty sad state of the world, but there is more to an anime series then it’s animation.

Looking at Berserk story wise, it feels more western than anything else.  The setting is something that you can find in a lot of western fantasy novels.  The age of apocalypse coming into a well-established, but alright dark fantasy universe.  Game of Thrones is an easy comparison, but there are more out there.  This series follows Guts after the events of the eclipse.  He’s still weighed down by everything that happened and his world view has been shattered.  This show has done a great job of making Guts feel separated from the rest of the world.  So far, I think I definitely into following Gut’s plight as he continuously gets challenged by the world itself in a wide variety of ways.  I also like how Guts doesn’t completely destroy the monsters that he fights against and his to work hard against them.  Some good in something that a lot of people consider bad.

91 Days

Can you like a series without liking its main character?  This is how I feel about 91 Days so far, because the weakest thing that stands out to me is the main character.  He’s one of those single minded people who only wants revenge.  All together that’s fine, but I wish there was more to define who he is then revenge.  I know I keep bringing this character up, but Char Aznable from Gundam is a revenge character, but that’s not the only trait that defines who he is.  There is literally nothing else to him, but maybe some big changes will happen to him after the latest episode.

Like I said before, I like everything else.  The setting already feels rich and incredibly immersive and the other characters are great and well defined.  A watcher can definitely feel how the mobs are affected by each other.  The grinding of territories and the loss of human lives and partners.  91 Days does its best to feel real and it genuinely works. 

Thunderbolt Fantasy

Technically, this isn’t an anime.  It’s a series that uses Taiwanese glove puppetry to tell its story instead of animation.  That being said, this is probably my favorite series that is currently airing.  It is by no means a sophisticated, original, or well thought out series that requires the use of your brain to understand it, but it knows what it is.  Because of this fact, the show does what it does best which is have some good characters and awesome fight.  The story is simple and anyone has probably heard of those before: A legendary sword, bad guys chasing the person who holds a key to it, a random stranger saving this person, and then the adventure begins.  I don’t know why this captures my attention so much, maybe it’s sincerity, but I just really like it.


  1. I haven’t watched Berserk (wasn’t a fan of the original) or Thunderbolt Fantasy (not into puppets) and I am enjoying 91 Days and I agree. It definitely falls into the rare category of anime where I dislike the characters but am enjoying the story. And disliking the characters ins’t the same as not finding them interesting or wanting to know more about them. I just think they are all horrible people at the moment so it wouldn’t bother me if he failed miserably in his quest for revenge or if he succeeded.
    Thanks for sharing your first reactions.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I just watched all 3 episodes of berserk today. At first was like no I don’t think I will watch this. But when I did I was so into it. I like manly men like guts. The story is so good. So happy I watched it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The writing for Code Geass was so fantastic that despite my extreme hatred for both Lelouch and Kallen, I can’t help but love the series. Lelouch is despicable and Kallen annoys me, but every episode is just too good. Hopefully the writing for 91 Days will grow on you in such a way that you’ll start to like the lead character, or at least be able to tolerate him.


    1. The thing that made Lelouch interesting is the balance of being Zero and being his alter ego, a normal highschool student. While he did live his life for revenge, that’s not all the audience knew about him. It just seems like this guy wakes up every morning and immediately goes into revenge mode.

      Liked by 1 person

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