Wednesday, 21 May 2014

M3 the dark metal - Episode 5

Now that their island jaunt has revealed the psychic link which bonds the members of the Gargouille team - a link which is thought to be important to their ability in infiltrating the Lightless Realm - partnerships can be put in place for those with the strongest links.

While Akashi is left with a non-human partner in the form of the Argent, it's Emiru who really despairs as she's paired with the murderous and decidedly dysfunctional Heito - of course, to make things worse he also knows the secret of the Admonition which appears to be spreading throughout her body, which she continues to hide from all and sundry.

With negative emotions that surpass even Akashi's surging through her, all of this comes to a head as Gargouille are sent out on their first proper training foray into the Lightless Realm itself, with the Argent leading the way and both Heito and Emiru backing him up.  As soon as they come close, however, Emiru's body begins to react most strangely, while Heito's egging on of her primal fears leads to her producing an Admonition which attacks the others as things continue to spiral out of control.

While I remain interested in aspects of the story that M3 appears to be wanting to tell, its continuation to do so in such a ham-fisted way is frustrating my attempts to glean any real enjoyment out of it - Heito's over-the-top lunacy is comical more than it is disturbing, Emiru's place in proceedings feels equally forced and overblown, and the rest of the cast feel like cardboard cut-outs.  Throw in some of the least imaginative animation I've seen in quite some time, and you have yourself a recipe for mediocrity - for a series with so many dark or otherwise sinister elements, there's no real tension or feeling of impending dread; instead things just happen (often in ways which feel ill-fitting against the backdrop of the show's broader narrative), and it's really rather hard to care when they do.

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