Next up from the new anime season is CANAAN. I was pretty interested to take a look at this series because I generally the way Type Moon material handles female characters, and the promo art for it was very pretty. I was also intrigued that prototype figures of Canaan emerged before the first episode had even aired, which is a rather confident move.
The plot isn’t exactly clear from the first episode – it focuses mainly on the action and atmosphere, both of which it pulls off with style. It’s apparently a continuation from 428: Fūsasareta Shibuya de, the game it’s connected to, but it’s hard to tell from a single episode whether knowledge of the game is necessary to enjoy the anime. The first episode is certainly watchable enough without it – the great visuals make up for the confusion.
The few male characters introduced look to suffer from the same problems as most of the men in the other Type Moon shows that I’ve seen, which is to say they came across as either boring or unlikeable. Their character designs are generic compared to the beautiful designs of the women, and there wasn’t much appeal in their personalities, either. The journalist was pretty amusing, but that was about as good as it got. I hope they’ll get enough development throughout the series that they don’t drag it down.
The women on the other hand seem pretty interesting for the most part. Their designs were definitely attractive, but also fairly practical – less silly outfits and ridiculous proportions compared to other series. Maria’s cheerful personality was borderline annoying at times, but Canaan herself is mysterious but likable, and Alphard and Liang Qi are mostly just mysterious, but enough hints were dropped about them that they seem interesting.
The fanservice was largely kept at a minimum, with the exception of one scene. There’s nothing that distracts from the rest of the episode, and hopefully they’ll keep things at the same sort of level in future episodes.
The atmosphere was great. I thought the mixture of violence and celebration was really effective, and the contrast between the seemingly lighthearted festival-goers and the sinister incidents occurring worked nicely. The use of colour, light and ‘camera’ angles was good, and the animation was fluid.
CANAAN definitely looks like a promising action series. It looks great, and hopefully the plot will turn out decent as well.