Asterisk War – The Academy City on the Water (Gakusen Toshi Asterisk)

(12 episodes + another season already announced for Spring 2016)

What’s it about ?

You may have noticed over the years I’ve been doing this that there’s a specific subgenre I can’t stand and will take a lot of work to make me care about : the light novel adaptation about teenagers in magical high school, with tons of gratuitous fighting and technobabble.

Well, lucky me : there’s three of them this season, and this is the first one.

Characters

Ayato, our boring male lead, is a new transfer into this magical academy, and thus everyone happily exposits to him how everything works here and in the world. Not that he really cares ; and I can’t really blame him, since I don’t either. He’s vaguely following the footsteps of his older sister, whose stay at the academy 5 years ago was apparently so tumultuous that records have been expunged (and the action prologue certainly seems to concur with this)… Wait, that sounds way more interesting than anything else in the current timeframe. Why are we following HIM instead of HER ? It’s not even like he’s passionate about finding out what happened to her !

Julis, our token tsundere love interest. With fire-related powers, of course. And even a literal princess from some random European country, because of course monarchy has made a resurgence in the future somehow. Cue avalanche of terrible romantic comedy clichés : him walking on her while she’s in her underwear, the token magic duel where he ends up cradling her and grabbing her boobs by total accident, them being forced to sit next to one another in class…

Claudia, the scheming student council president. She’s intent on getting on board for the inter-academy magical tournaments (for reasons that escape me, since he looks like nothing special so far), and she goes about this through a fix of friendliness, helpful exposition, and downright sexual assault and trolling.

In case you’re wondering, the mandatory pervert best friend does show up in due time, just in time for more clunky exposition.

Production Values

Decent enough, I guess ? The camera is firmly stuck into pervert mode, though.

Overall Impression

Have I mentioned why I heavily dislike this subgenre ? Well, it’s because most of them are crap like this : uninspired, tedious, heavily derivative, and relying on clichés to make up for the lack of creativity. All of the characters are annoying (aside from Claudia, who’s just creepy), the jokes should have been retired decades ago, and the plot seems to be heading nowhere but towards a generic tournament arc. This show has absolutely nothing to it beyond the wish-fulfilment value, but that’s completely lost on me.

And this has already been greenlit for two seasons ? Dear gods. Well, I’m not sticking around, that’s for sure.

Source: [In Which I Review] New anime, Fall 2015 – Page 2

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Jhiday

I've been kinda blogging about anime for years... but mostly on forums (such as RPG.net's Tangency) and other sites. This site is an archive for all that stuff, just in case.

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