Rokujo Miharu wants an easy, carefree life - Let's face it, who doesn't? But of course, anime is rarely about having a carefree life, so it takes no time at all in this opening episode of Nabari no Ou for middle school student Rokujo to be delved into a world of ninjas, a world in which is body carries a secret art of immense power that could end the constant fighting between rival ninja villages.
It's a simple enough plot, combining the almost inevitable high school aspect of virtually every anime you could care to mention with the 'cool factor' that comes from involving ninjas. Yes, it may be a little clichéd in that sense, but you have to hand it to Nabari no Ou's opening episode for its very slick presentation (it really does look great visually) and instantly likeable characters in the dour Rokujo himself, and his classmate and teacher respectively who both want to protect him from the forces that want the secret art which he holds.
Predictable this may all sound, but I really enjoyed this first episode of the series - It was well-paced, and wasted no time in getting to the thick of the action and explaining the major plot points. Whether it can hold that interest across the entire season of the show remains to be seen, but with more major characters clearly yet to be introduced and a very positive vibe to it visually, I can see this becoming a regular fixture on my 'to watch' list. It may have all been done before, but I'm willing to cut it some slack if it does it well.