A word of warning: the posts in this series about Mobile Suit Gundam Iron-blooded Orphans (Tekketsu no orphans) were written at the time of airing, without prior knowledge of anything about the show or the story.
For a long while I sound very careful and cagey about the quality of the show… because I was: anime (like everything) can be very hit-and-miss! I’ll probably add some notes written with the hindsight of having seen the whole show, but I’ll try to remember to clearly mark them.
So, on with the show… Iron Blooded Orphans (spoilers up to Ep2)
After the second episode, it’s still gearing up, but I won’t complain about a slow start: stuff is happening, worldbuilding is being laid out.
Mikatsuki seems to be the scarred, very young child soldier we expected: he seems completely detached from emotions, and that’s not a surprise. Hell, he started living with violence when he was what… seven (in the flashbacks)?
Orga is definitely going to be the too-young leader of the gang when they rebel (in one or two episodes, I assume): he’s tough, but cares for the other kids, and seems to be smart and kind in his own way. After all those years, he still asks Mikazuki his opinion, even if it looks obvious that the young’un will basically do whatever he says, because he’s been in charge since that fateful alley shooting.
I’m happy that the annoying Gjallahorn lieutenant from the first episode picked the short straw, but Crank… I’m afraid the next episode’s title leaves little to the imagination. He does not want to fight a dishonorable war against children, he’s going alone… yeah. Pity, he seems like a decent-enough guy.
But most of all… what I understood of the whole plan by the Major (or Colonel?) is delightfully realistic in its dynamics and politics: send troops to wipe out some mercenaries with a pretest, kill one of the beloved leaders of the independence movement, radicalize the conflict. Now you have a casus belli to go and wipe them out utterly and still look like you were just defending the peace. The parallels with actual world politics are pretty chilling.
Another “kid show” (big quotes) like Double-O, for sure. Keeping my hopes up for the rest of the show.