Sunday, 1 March 2009

Viper's Creed - Episode 3

After treating us to plenty of rip-roaring action in episode one, and then slightly less so in episode two, this third instalment of Viper's Creed looked set to bring us right back into the thick of things, with yet another event involving chasing robot-things across the highways. However, this doesn't last too long, as we move seamlessly into "the one where Saiki ruins everything for everybody".

After blowing up a highway in episode one, the construction of further roads has been sped up despite protests (we're helpfully told that air and sea travel is no longer possible... something to do with syrup. Don't ask), and it's these protesters that get the short end of a mixture of Saiki's trigger finger the exploding mechas, causing a number of deaths. From here, a night out at a restaurant with Saiki also gets ruined, as he ends up in an altercation with one of these protesters which leads to his murder outside. Saiki's fingerprints are on the gun, but surely he wasn't the culprit? So begins a rather stilted murder-mystery episode which would make Agatha Christie spin in her grave at supersonic speeds.

For starters, I don't really get how Saiki somehow ended this episode as a relative hero, the poor guy whose heart has been torn apart by former war atrocities and deaths by his hand - It was his fault that protesters died in the first place, and without that none of this would have happened. Sakurako's investigation into who the real murderer is was also embarrasingly easy, involving little more than visiting the guy who sold him the weapon who is easily coaxed into playing Guess Who? to reveal who it is ("Does he have a beard?" "No, but he's a blademan who used to fight in a war that I believe he mentioned to you earlier in this episode. I'll never tell you who he is though!"). Once that's settled, everyone shoots at each other a bit and then they all live happily ever after. The end.

Really, Viper's Creed should stick to cool motorbike mechas and blowing seven shades of Hell out of things that aren't human, for that is what this series does best. Trying to introduce suspense, mystery or depth of character to this show is like trying to make pornography better by giving it an over-arching and dialogue-ridden plot - It doesn't work, it's distracting from the good bits, and 99% of the time it just looks and sounds plain stupid.


Martin said...

I watched the first two episodes but if the third is as bad as it sounds here I'll almost certainly drop it. There's just so much I want to watch that I don't have time to lament how Shinji Aramaki is helming such a dollop of meh after directing two Appleseed films.

I laughed at the porn analogy. As far as I can tell Kinoko Nasu makes a nice job of that, but those are good stories with a few scenes of smut thrown in as opposed to porn with a story shoehorned in, which is a different matter entirely! Either way, Viper's Creed has proved to be disappointing so far. What a shame.

kadian1364 said...

I'm just watching series like Monster, Gankutsuou, and Aria to tide me over until Spring season rolls around.