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Garo - Vanishing Line (2017, Mappa)

Anime Reviews

Garo - Vanishing Line (2017, Mappa)


Sophie Heness has been searching for her brother "Martin" for a number of years and thought she would finally have a lead after being invited to a famous fortune teller Moon Wizard. However, it turns out he was a "Horror", humans that allowed demons from the Makai world to possess them due to desperate desires and threaten the rest of the human world. Fortunately easy going Makai "Golden Knight", Sword reaches her just in time.

After overhearing Sword searching for leads on "El Dorado", Sophie decides to track him down again hoping he would help find out her brother's whereabouts. And so, after proving herself useful and able to face the Horrors, she hangs around with Sword, Makai Alchemists Gina and Luke while clues are gathered.

Saw a bit of this show on TV and it looked kind of interesting. It's another entry in the Garo franchise which started off as a late night Tokusatsu series aimed at an older audience; think special effects with transforming suited heroes like the Power Rangers franchise. There are three Anime series that take place in the same universe; one set in the past as a Western fantasy "Divine Flame", another an Eastern fantasy "Crimson Moon" and this is the modern world story. This is the first animated title I've ever watched but it's self-contained so you don't need to have watched the others.

Macho guy with a talking sidekick ring who can transform, running around giving monsters a brutal bashing and destroying everything around them without a care, lots of fan service such as over-sized breasts. Sounds like a guys oriented horror, action flick. Sword always shows his appreciation unless it's Gina who manipulates and takes advantage of him using her feminine charms the same way Saeko does with Ryo in City Hunter. In fact, it's actually done in a simlar way. Just Sword oogling the ladies rather than just awkward camera angles one after the other. There's lots of gore too since demons devouring humans are involved.

It's got good pacing, fights are intense and it manages to throw some humour in to lighten up but not overdo it. As the trio journey together they end up getting side tracked but it goes well with their profession as protectors against the Makai and helps build up character.

What I didn't like was the tech side of the story felt out-of-place and also not a fan of the final battle but, the run up to it was good and so was the wrap-up. Episode 16 actually has a bit of a bonus scene after the credits.

Rough, mature looking art suits the world setting which is mainly America-like "Russell City". Background art looks great and action scenes are smooth. Even the food art looks scrumptious. I like how they give Sophie a phone with a broken screen since it matches with her orphan background but, an iPhone might not have been the best choice to go with it since they're so expensive. Eye-catches are interesting because the characters that appear changes quite often in the show. Second cour of the show there seems to be a drop in quality however.

Choreography's good so that you don't just see a flashing slideshow or have to replay a fight in slow motion just to see the moves. Well, apart from the 3D which looks a bit stiff.

First OP's not that great but the first ED "Sophie" by Masami Okui (now part of the rock band JAM Project) is pretty good. Hearing her solo vocals just remind me of classics like her other theme songs from Slayers and Di Gi Charat. Also nice to see the second OP "Howling Sword" is sung by Kita Shuuhei. Guy won the 2007 Anime Song Contest but didn't look like he got much work since then ever since his first song for Persona Trinity Soul.

Think City Hunter but with horror. A fair amount of fan service, good cast of characters and just the right amount of comedy to keep it fun too. Just doesn't have as many wholesome stories to back it all up.

Garo Vanishing Line

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