This, too, is a show I’ve written about before(here). Since writing that, however, I’ve written another post on Reddit that I have yet to repost on this blog, so that’s what I’ll be doing now. The format is a bit weird, but hey, this is my post series and I never promised consistency.
The characters are definitely the best part of this show, at least for me. Normally, the prize of “best character” would either go automatically to the protagonist or one of the supporting cast(usually in the form of “best girl”) or, in rare cases, the antagonist(if s/he happens to be particularly evil or funny). But for this show, it’s hard to choose. Shuu is most definitely a shounen protagonist, but because of his lack of power, he takes the archetype in an entirely different direction. I usually hate that archetype, but it was impossible not to cheer Shuu on. The show actually made me sincerely root for the main character, and that was pretty great. Now, if the show had nothing else to offer, Shuu would be my obvious choice for best character.
But then there’s Hamdo. I actually can’t think of any antagonist that could even come close to how much I liked Hamdo. And not in the sense that I enjoyed seeing him be evil. He’s a villain and an antagonist, and he truly is evil, but he’s also a multifaceted character. Hell, his personality is more colourful than Shuu’s, even with the aforementioned different direction that his character archetype took. So, one might think that in this situation, the choice of best character would be between the protagonist and the antagonist of the story, i.e. the two most important characters.
Nope. because Sara exists. Sara isn’t even really important to the story. She could’ve been replaced by faceless background characters and the story would probably have played out the same way(for the most part). But the show’s portrayal of her is so odd that it’s memorable. Why spend so much time on an inconsequential character? Why show her no quarter when it comes to her wishes, desires and pleas? The answer is in the episode where she makes her escape. Sara is powerful in a way that no other character in the show is. And that’s why I seriously consider her one of the best characters.
To express the show in a more humorous way without spoilers:
Imagine Lord of the Rings, but from Sauron’s perspective, and Sauron is having an existential crisis, but he’s captured both Frodo and the Ring, but the Ring won’t cooperate with Sauron, and then Sam gives both Frodo and Sauron the middle finger.
Of course, that’s not to say that the other characters are forgettable or bad. Hamdo’s second-in-command, Abelia, is also a very complex character. She’s kind of the bridge between Hamdo’s madness and Shuu’s desire to do the right thing. Nabuca and Boo represent the entirety of the child army, and the light side of humanity. Tabool, on the other hand, represents the dark side. They’re all really interesting characters in their own rights.
But man, I also had problems deciding how much I really liked this show. My main concerns are probably with the possible inconsistencies and maybe with the ending a little bit. Also, Lala-Ru could’ve been fleshed out a bit more, I think. Overall, though, this is definitely a really good show.