Monday, 10 January 2011

Dragon Crisis! - Episode 1

It's looking just like another normal day for Ryuji as episode one of Dragon Crisis begins - aside from a slightly weird dream it's just a case of getting up to his empty house, going to school, and watching the seconds tick by at a glacial pace during the seemingly interminable wait to go home again.

Rather, that seems to be the plan until a woman named Eriko Nanao shows up and drags him off to help her with an errand.  It seems that Eriko and Ryuji already know one another, largely on account of the former's obsession with attempting to find so-called Lost Preciouses (there's no proper plural for the word "precious", cut me some slack here).  Indeed, it's just such a job that Eriko has nabbed Ryuji to help with on this occasion, as she effectively looks to steal what she refers to as an S-class (cue the Kuragehime jokes) Lost Precious.

While stealing this item seems surprisingly easy, getting away is a more difficult task once the victims of this theft come to their senses and start producing guns.  In the ensuing chaotic car chase, the package containing this Lost Precious is inadvertently opened, to reveal a beautiful, mystical girl with long, blonde hair named C.C.  Oops, wrong anime... in fact, this girl has no name, but she does serve as a pretty hand flame-thrower to assist in Eriko's escape.

Of course, this is no human flame-thrower, but rather the dragon of the show's title - a dragon girl who seems to recognise Ryuji and know his name to boot, meaning that she attaches herself almost immovably to him from the moment they first meet.  This is naturally going to be a pretty big problem for any school kid, but that's only the start of it as the "proper" owners of "Rose" (as she comes to be known) come to retrieve their precious cargo...

Although I did thoroughly enjoy this episode's car chase scene (which was nothing hugely original, but it was pretty nicely done and it seems like a while since I've seen a half-decent one in an anime series), Dragon Crisis' opener otherwise felt like a series that is ticking off the boxes required to appease the fans from the very off.  With some harem elements building up already, and the shy girl and monosyllabic girl already checked and confirmed on the list, I don't hold out much hope for this breaking the mould as it continues.  To be honest, I don't really care if it doesn't break the mould - this was my "guilty pleasure" pick for this season (well, more of a "what the Hell, there isn't really anything much else that tickles my fancy airing" pick), so as long as it entertains then I don't mind if it does so with a dose of fan service and a line in daft plots.  Thus far though, it's only barely entertained me, so it's going to need to up its game from even this point if it wants to hold my attention.

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