Black Rock Shooter OVA: A Work of Art or Random Doodles?

By Nopy

The Black Rock Shooter (BRS) OVA was undoubtedly one of the most anticipated anime released this year. Trailers for the anime have been out for quite a while, and the animation in them looked superb, but does the OVA match the quality shown in the trailers? In a way, yes, and in a way, no. The thing about the BRS anime is that it was split into two different parts: one in the real world, and one in a dark world where characters battle it out. If you go to Google and search for “black rock shooter ova review,” you’ll find plenty of blogs praising the animation quality. I was actually disappointed to see that so many veteran anime fans were blinded by a few good scenes to see the animation for what it really is. I admit that the battle scenes were nicely done, but other parts were of so low quality that it gets difficult to ignore. Below are just a few examples of the poor animation quality in BRS, taken from the first 20 minutes of the OVA.

In this first picture, I’d like to draw your attention to Mato’s feet. If you compare her feet with your own, you’ll see that the shape isn’t quite right. Take a look closer at her left foot and you’ll see that her big toe is on the wrong side.

This second picture is a great example of how to cut back on animation costs. In real life (and most anime), windows are transparent, allowing you to see outside. Windows also exist in the BRS anime, but they’re all white and emit their own light. If you watch the whole anime, you might find one or two that are transparent.

In this picture, take a close look at the second girl from the right. If you just look at her upper half, she looks fine, but once again, take a look at the feet. Her shoes are so small that they’re only about the distance from her mouth to her eyelashes. The girl on the far right also appears to just have some stubs for fingers.

Here, if you take a look at the girls’ skirts, you’ll see that 4/5 of them don’t have any lines or shading indicating where the folds are. Whoever was in charge of this scenes was probably too busy to put in some extra lines.

You can see the white windows, deformed hands, and missing lines all in one shot here.

Once again, you can see some more deformed body parts in this picture.

This kind of quality continues on throughout the anime, and is rather disappointing considering anime OVA’s are known for having superior animation. I’m not saying that all of BRS is bad, but it would have been nice if they had put in as much effort animating the regular scenes as the fight scenes.

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Nopy is an engineer and a rabid fan of anime. He also enjoys collecting anime figures, reading manga, and viewing artwork from anime/manga artists. Nopy began blogging about anime in 2008 and joined the Forever Geek team in 2009. Besides anime and manga, he also enjoys the occasional video game and catching the latest internet memes.

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