Kiznaiver | Worth Watching?
For what’s worth though, Kiznaiver take advantage of its premise quite a bit. From the first few episodes, we have a mysterious girl named Noriko who immediately takes interest in the main protagonists in particular Katsuhira. Their relationship can be described as strange but also familiar. This is because the two already seem to have history judging by the flashbacks and segments. And despite Katsuhira not knowing it, he feels a strange connection to Noriko. This also links a connection to the Kizuna system as we’ll discover a darker side of science. From an experimental point of view, the show makes it clear that the system is far from perfect. The kids who underwent experimentation are more like their former selves, kind of like a shell. In the meantime, the show will also explore how the Kizuna system influences relationships in the present.
And to be quite honest, relationship dynamics is an important aspect in the show. The main male protagonist Katsuhira has some obvious chemistry with Tenga and Chidori. So much in fact, there’s hints of romance that formulates into a generic love triangle. On the other hand, there’s a general melancholic-like mood throughout the show about relationships. Take a look at Maki for instance. Remember, the series likes to express emotions and sorrow is definitely one of those as well. Maki’s guilt shows a fragile side of her personality. One thing I do praise on Kiznaiver is the heavy writing to get the audience to understand more about the characters. From a personal view, it makes the characters more believable. Even Noriko, the most mysterious character in the show can be understood better once we see a deeper side of her story. Unfortunately, the series still relies a lot on its relationship angles especially when it comes to romance. In the latter half of the show, there’s some particular segments that makes you really roll your eyes about Katsuhira’s role.
As with most series from studio Trigger, they often tend to go overboard with its gimmicks. Kiznaiver isn’t an exception to that either especially with such a thrilling premise. But for what it advertises, the show itself falls between the lines of silliness, intimate, and emotional. In essence, the comedy is a hit or miss because generally, the jokes are often outstretched than what they should be. The emotional segments tries way too hard on many occasions in particular one climatic episode when the Kizuna system affects the characters at its peak. And finally, the show’s narrative often pushes the story in ways that becomes predictable or repetitive. The over-saturated exposition about the Kizuna system doesn’t really make strong impressions. In fact, the plot device is probably the least interesting part of the entire show.
In terms of artwork, Kiznaiver gives off a vibrant feeling. The characters look colorful with some generic traits to match their personalities. The setting itself has the feel of a futuristic world with more advanced technology. However, not everything looks very solid in terms of design. From a personal point of view, the characters looks rather cartoonish. From the various character expressions to their clothing designs, it seems that Trigger designed them to reflect their outer image.
As for the soundtrack, there isn’t much to say. The only thing that sticks out is the opening theme “LAY YOUR HANDS ON ME” by BOOM BOOM SATELLITES, and rightfully so. Everything else in the sound department is forgettable by comparison. The only other thing worth taking note of is the sound effects used at times; like the glitchy noise made whenever the Kiznaiver device was activated, or the added sound effects given for objects when motioned. It was minor inclusions but still did something for the show than had it been excluded.
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