This one is a combination of magic and survival shows, kind of what might happen if “Chrome-Shelled Regios” and “Blade Dance” merged ideas, so we end up with “Sky Wizards Academy” (“Kūsen Madōshi Kōhosei no Kyōkan”, “The Instructor of the Aerial Combat Wizard Trainees”).
In the alternative world of the future, humanity was driven off the land by the threat of magical armored insects and now lives in aerial floating cities. Its defenses lie in wizards who fight the insects with magic in mid-air. They are able to float and soar about and use a variety of weapons to dispatch these ‘Devil Beetles’.
Kanata Age (guy in center) is a young man who lives on the floating wizard academy city of Misutogan (although it had a variety of spellings during the run I was watching). He was once celebrated as the “Black Master Swordsman,” the elite ace of the S128 special team. However, he is now despised as the “traitor of the special team.” Teams are double ranked, according to both ability and sortation within their letter rank, from “S” rank, all the way down to “E” rank. Seriously, if you are “E” rank, why are you even in the Academy? I hear Starbucks is hiring.
One day, he is assigned as the instructor of E601, a team that has suffered over 100 consecutive defeats. E601 has three girls: Misora Whitale (redhead in front), Lecty Eisenach (blondie just above), and Rico Flamel (black hair to the right) and they all have problems that prevent them from advancing. It is Kanata’s job to mold them into something better or they will be asked to leave. And what are their problems? Misora is trying to be JUST like her mother, who was a brilliant Wizard, but she may not have what it takes to follow her (that is her sword as well, so a lot of pressure is being exacted on her BY her). Lecty lacks confidence to the point she cannot make eye contact with anyone. That makes it kind of hard to follow an enemy when you won’t look at them. Rico is a beauty goddess and hasn’t the time to get sweaty and dirty, as that crimps her style. Just think of the dry-cleaning bills!
Kanata is a very unorthodox teacher and uses an approach that can bring out their latent abilities that seems both cruel and vicious. Ahh, but even HE has problems. The first comes in the form of Yuri Flostre (big spear to the left). She was a member of S128 when they had a climactic battle with the beetles, but she was knocked out and never saw the conclusion, but feels that he is a traitor. Definition time: in this instance, we use the term ‘traitor’ to mean ‘not doing what they are asked’. He stopped going on these missions, thus the tag. He did not sell out to the beetles (The Beatles, however, are another matter. A mono pressing of the White Album is up for auction?! I…I digress. Back to the review).
The second of Kanata’s problems comes as Chloe Sevegny (upper left lady). She is the Guard Captain of S128 and still respects and supports Kanata, despite what others think. She wants him to succeed and shed his bad press, and brings more pressure to bear upon him. So the show is broken down into how Kanata can get these ladies to work as a team and trust one another, including how they will fare during the Ranking Tournament as well as resuscitate his ‘image’.
This show did have two problems: the first was the devil beetles themselves. Their approach is sheer numbers to overwhelm any opponent, but if you kill the Core Beetle, the rest scatter, as they now lack focus. It’s just what is it you do when they have 10,000 of them and only about 100 of you? Is there any strategy? The second was a side story that could have been handled better, but appeared to be hastily flung in just to complicate matters. I can’t discuss it too much, as it reveals quite a bit to the plot. I just felt there were a lot of unnecessary holes to complicate things that didn’t need to be complicated.
Although we do see the beetles attack during the show, for the most part, they are absent. There seems to be no offensive plans in place to try and take back the Earth. And what about the other floating cities? They must be having the same kind of problems Misutogan encounters or are we working as a unified whole, but behind the scenes where no one can see? That’s not made clear, so it comes off as a bit elitist.
On a scale of 1 to 10:
Artwork 7 (Pretty typical)
Plot 7 (As noted, done elsewhere better)
Pacing 7 (Too back-and-forth)
Effectiveness 7 (Easy read towards the end)
Conclusion 5 (It reaches a ‘coupler point’, but hasn’t ended)
Fan Service 3 (A similar show would be “Okamisan”)
Overall 7 (Not bad, but not good)
And remember, it’s first run until you’ve seen it. Don’t go near that traitor.