Thursday, 3 April 2014

Selector Infected WIXOSS - Episode 1

A hot new card game is sweeping the nation - so hot that even (gasp) girls are playing it!

The game in question is WIXOSS (pronounced Wi-cross, incidentally), and it might just be the key to friendship for our protagonist in this new original series for the spring.  Ruko isn't exactly a shy or retiring girl, but in spite of this she's found it hard to make any friends at her new school, much to the concern of her grandmother, who she lives with.  When her brother provides her with a WIXOSS deck to use as an icebreaker at school, Ruko is surprised to find that her main card - known as an LRIG - both moves and talks, and she's even more surprised to discover that she's the only one who notices this.

Regardless, come the next day Ruko takes her WIXOSS set to school, and although not confident enough to challenge some of the girls openly playing the game in the canteen, she instead finds herself challenged to a game by another player with a similarly intelligent LRIG.  It's via this girl, Yuzuki Kurebayashi, that we learn that both individuals are so-called "Selectors" (like Craig David, I guess), girls with the opportunity to become the "Eternal Girl" who will be granted any wishes they desire, although conversely if they lose just three battles against other Selectors they'll be forever banished from this role with any hopes of having their wishes granted with it.  Ruko and Yuzuki's first battle is quickly called off thanks to the school bell, but a friendship is born regardless... is there something darker beneath the surface of this fun card game though?

I, for one, certainly hope that there's more to WIXOSS than meets the eye, because it's certainly nudging the viewer in that direction with all the subtlety of a sledgehammer-wielding goat.  Subtle or not however, I have to admit that I'm rather taken by the opening episode of Selector Infected WIXOSS - it may feel like the lovechild of C: Control and Madoka Magica, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing and with sufficient suspension of disbelief its core idea seems sound.  This first episode was also decidedly well presented with some nice animation and a decent soundtrack, so if it can continue to craft its world with drama to match what seem to be its ambitions then this could be one to watch out for.  It can't be any worse than the previous Madoka Magica wannabe I watched, Day Break Illusion, right?

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