What’s it about ?
Adaptation of a spin-off manga from Soul Eater. Not that the original series is required reading/watching : the premise is reintroduced from scratch, it focuses on new characters, and this seems to be set around the start of the main story anyway.
Tsugumi, a girl who discovers she’s a weapon. So she goes to
the Jean Grey School for Higher Learning Death Weapon Meister Academy, where she can learn to control her newfound abilities and save the world. Sure, Death City and the academy are quite overwhelming as places, but she’ll be fine, eh ?
Meme, a weird girl who seems to have memory issues. She’s on track to become a “meister” (the people who wield the weapon-people, with totally no sexual subtext whatsoever to their teaming-up, no siree). She’s nearly immediately assaulted in the corridors by a couple of sleazy assholes ; Tsugumi, who had befriended her a bit, finds her resolve and runs back to help her.
Anya, a rich/noble girl who’s come to study as a meister and mingle with the plebeians. She can’t overlook the attack against Meme, so she offers to wield Tsugumi and get rid of the two jerks. They make a pretty good combo… which is a bit awkward, as Meme wants to partner up with Tsugumi too. That’s not the kind of triangle she was expecting to be in the middle of…
A good chunk of the original series’ cast drop in to make cameos. Of most significance : Maka, as the experienced upperclassman Tsugumi takes for a role model, and Pr Sid, who presides over the welcome course.
It’s studio Bones, so of course it looks nice and the action sequences are impeccable, but as a whole it looks much more generic and ordinary than the Burton-esque original series. The jerk sun is still around, but it looks a bit alone. It’s especially weird as the plot still calls for demented designs – there’s a dude who can turn anything but his head into a knife !
Also, no more Taku Iwasaki music. The replacement’s not bad, but it’s just not the same.
This is a nice angle for a spin-off ; the original series never really bothered with world-building, rarely giving any sense of how DWMA was supposed to work and fit into the world. Here it’s front and center, free from the constraints of any wider plot. I already get a much better understanding of DWMA than I ever did before ! (Like, that Death City is supposed to be in America.) And the new main characters form a good framework to explore all of this.
I’m on board.