You Have “Failed”

As of late, I have been running into a lot of fighting academy shows, where people of varying degrees of talents and abilities are shipped off to this particular institute or that particular school to hone their particular fighting skills, in that they may defend this country or do battle against other schools for honor and glory and taiyaki. It’s like being in “The Goblet of Fire” but without Cedric Diggory. (Hmmmm……….this is like déjà vu all over again). Much like “Sky Wizards”, “Asterisk War” and/or/perhaps/either “Bahamut”, this one, Rakudai Kishi no Kyabarurii” (“Chivalry of a Failed Knight” or “The Heroic Tales of the Failure Knight”) continues in that same vein.

We are in an alternative future, where humans with supernatural powers are known as Blazers. They can materialize a Device, weapons made through a person’s soul. What is that weapon? Only your soul can tell you. Ikki Kurogane (him) is an F-Rank Blazer. Crfap, I could be an F-Rank. I mean, that is as low as you can get and still be admitted into Hagan Academy. His nickname is “The Worst One”. As he returns to his dorm room, he is shocked to see the half-naked Stella Vermillion (right red-haired her), who is an A-Ranker, the second princess of the Vermillion Empire and one of those rare Blazer types that are the best of her generation (like Hermione Granger).

Well, naked and half-naked girls are a force to be reckoned with, even though they are now roommates (and who put this mess together, eh?) but dominance must be established. Since they cannot come to terms to share this room, they must fight. It turns out Ikki isn’t all that icky, as we learn the details as to why he is ranked so low. Then, coming onto the scene, is Shizuku Kurogane (left silver-haired her), Ikki’s sister, who has a severe bro-con for Ikki. She is a B-Ranker, so not all that to sneeze at. The show details the complex relationships between the three of them and their struggles to get to the Seven Star Sword Art Festival.

This is an annual event, held by the seven Mage Knight Academies in Japan, to determine the strongest Apprentice Knight among the schools. The winner of the festival becomes known as the Seven Stars Sword King. The Seven Star Sword Art Festival features actual combat and the possibility of competitors dying is a very strong possibility. Yeah, it does sound like the Tri-Wizards Tournament to me, eh?

A problem I had is that I saw “Asterisk War” at the same time as this show and the plots crossed over to the point that I wasn’t sure which was which. You had the same problems (how good is that guy?), the same emotional conflict (I am your partner, both on the battlefield of swords and the battlefield of hearts) and all kinds of underhanded machinations by competitors who will do anything to get selected (lying and cheating is OK, right?)

In any other year, this may have gotten better or higher marks, but with so many of the same thing coming out and showcasing minor differences between them all, it is hard to judge this show objectively. The use of a low-ranked person being able to ascend and succeed is nothing new in any field of literature and trends are never fully predictable. It’s just that so many have made the scene, it is getting tiresome. The action sequences are certainly entertaining and the ploys and counter-ploys are employed with great aplomb, but at the end, I have seen it before. Crfap, I saw it at the same time!

On a scale of 1 to 10:

Artwork           7 (Workmanlike)
Plot                  6 (Been there, saw that)
Pacing              7 (The fights, the fights)
Effectiveness   6 (Lost because of too much of the same)
Conclusion      5 (It reaches a ‘coupler point’, but hasn’t ended)
Fan Service     2 (A similar show would be “Okamisan”)
Overall            6 (Only the names have been changed to protect the innocent)

And remember, it’s first run until you’ve seen it. Now I can never get married!

About The Droid

It took me about 40 years and seven valiant attempts to finally enjoy anime. Whether I grew into it or the stories got better, things have been percolating along since 2004.
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