Friday, 5 April 2013

Devil Survivor 2: The Animation - Episode 1

Hibiki Kuze and Daichi Shijima might be complete opposites personality-wise, but are they are regardless the best of friends in spite of these major differences.  It's a friendship that proves to be both their undoing and their saviour as this anime adaptation of Ninetendo DS title Devil Survivor 2 arrives this spring.

Everything seems wonderfully normal, as you might expect, as the series begins, until Daichi introduces his buddy to a "Dead Face" web site called Nicaea - a site where you can snap a photo of a friend, and at some point you'll receive a message showing said person at the time of their death.  Ghoulish thought it is all and sundry assume this to be little more than a piece of technical trickery in spite of urban legends that the service seems to be actively predicting people's deaths.

Naturally, it isn't long until Hibiki and Daichi get to see the Nicaea's true purpose for themselves - after both receiving messages showing a video on the other's death at the very underground station at which they are standing, the exact same events unfold right before their eyes, killing them both.  That isn't the end of the story however, as they're both offered another chance to live, in turn being provided with a so-called "summoning" app.  No, the series doesn't turn into another season of Baka and Test at this point, but instead the massive natural disaster that has caused the train accident and untold damage across Shibuya also brings with it the appearance of all sorts of monsters.  Confusion reigns in the wake of these strange goings-on, but it soon becomes clear that this summoning app is the key to survival for our two male protagonists and fellow student Io Nitta, while a government agency known misleadingly as the Japan Meteorological Society are also taking action of their own in response to the unfolding situation.

All in all, this was a pretty strong opening episode of Devil Surivor 2 - it introduced its characters quickly and succinctly, wasted no time in throwing us into the midst of its premise and then constructed enough action, drama and intrigue around the whole thing to hook the viewer in for the foreseeable future.  In this sense, it's following very clearly in the footsteps of Persona 4: The Animation (for obvious reasons) which is certainly no bad thing, and with a concept that feels rather like Persona 4 meets Gantz I'm certainly keen to see whether the series can continue to keep its delivery slick, and of course whether it has a strong enough story to back that up.

No comments: