Senki Zesshou Symphogear – 01 Review

Don’t ask me what kind of ‘climax’ she’s talking about. I have no idea anyway why she uses that kind of phrase in the first place…

Symphogear 01 – Singing Is An Act Of Violence

To continue with the trend that I have yet to see any series in this season I wouldn’t call crap, Symphogear is the really endearing story of cute girls becoming responsible for being pop-stars and kicking the sorry asses of a bland danger called ‘Noise’. It’s called Noise because the story’s about singing teenagers, get it? Noise, singing, beating the shit out of each other? “What a great idea!”, you might say at this point and yeah, I don’t know what the hell is wrong with you if you’re really saying that. It’s crap. Another series you need to stay the hell away from.

Foreshadowing that shows one of the main-characters die (the sillier but cheesier one, who would’ve guessed…)
Two girls are famous pop-stars but secretly are the only weapon to fight the Noise, an evil thingy killing humans. At one of their concerts the Noise-stuff appears and there’s fighting. One of the famous girls dies (the sillier but cheesier one, who would’ve gue… Wait, didn’t that happen already? Ah, no, wait, it will just happen again in the future with the new mahou-shoujo-couple). Some crying and one of the main-characters get saved despite having her heart pierced by an aggressive pudding-attack.
Some time later…
The two main-girls are insufferably nice to each other and the doofus is a fan of the famous pop-star now singing by herself. She runs into town not noticing how Noise-pudding massacres the town around her. She saves a little girl and runs away, the pudding ignores her despite ambushing and cornering her two times. Then she remembers that piece of wisdom from the doofus (the dead one… I mean, the one that doesn’t die at the end of the series) that against death only one thing helps and that’s simply not accepting it (yeah, try telling that your dying grandma…). She then painfully transforms into the scifi-version of a mahou-shoujo and… yeah, cliffhanger and whatnot. You know how these series are…

That’s something all doctors can learn from: If a person’s in danger of dying just tell that person to ‘not accept it’. That most definitely will help the problem of that person dying and all that…

One can say many things about Symphogear – and none of them are positive. I don’t know why people still bother producing this kind of series. Can’t they just show reruns of all the shows this series is shamelessly ripping off instead of using a generic story-idea mixed with stolen parts from other series?
Well, establishing the fact it’s very unoriginal and generic, let’s look at its basic premise. Obviously it’s the Macross-version of the belief that singing really matters to issues like World Peace and beating the shit out of aliens. Singing is really important in this anime and that means using a sledgehammer to remind you of that the characters are all at a music-centred school and two characters are successful pop-stars – while going to school. Because nobody older than 17 can save the world or something. But I said it’s really important and that means these mahou shoujo characters with their sci-fi-suits have to sing during battle. Yes, it isn’t enough that pop-stars have to beat the shit out of aliens they have to sing during the whole thing. Did you ever wonder why musicals don’t include elaborate stunts? Well, that’s because you can’t sing properly and enacting an action-scene. Sure, one might nag me with saying that this is an anime, pure fantasy and whatnot. But there’s a line where things go from being fantastical to being utterly ridiculous. Symphogear definitely crossed that line with the decision that the mahou-shoujo-characters have to sing during the whole battle (but apparently it’s enough when one of two mahou-shoujo’s sing when they fight together, go figure how that’s supposed to make sense).

“… But despite my reasonable advice to discontinue using said weapons we’ll keep shooting the monsters!”

Speaking of Mahou-Shoujo we get to see the Precure-formula (well, not like Precure was the first one either to use that formula) with one girl playing the energetic doofus and the other playing the shy voice of reason. Well, it’s like one of these Manzai-comedy-routines with the exception that they are not one bit funny. But what is funny in this case is the fact that energetic doofus always ends up dead. Yeah, the first doofus of the pop-stars is dead and using a cheap kind of foreshadowing it’s shown that the new doofus who replaces her also dies. Talk about lacking even the imagination to avoid obvious repetition.
The setting meanwhile is that of a futuristic society threatened by Noise. No, not some old people whining about teenagers partying too loud, Noise in this case are weird things without personality killing humans – probably because it’s fun. And also to help the pop-stars sell their CDs. Not like anyone would know watching this kind of vague and generic world-building. Anyway, the thing with this setting is that it’s really just another one of those lazy ‘too vague, too generic’-types where I feel like yawning just talking about it. It’s boring and dull. And without the proper world-building that’d bother showing me how dangerous Noise is instead of having random scenes with a lot of people dying most of the atmosphere this episode created was one of boredom. Although it tried hard to show off a lot of gruesome deaths (reminds me of Blood-C…). But it only gets worse than boredom when there are things like bad scene-transition as the new energetic doofus runs through a completely normal town with people and everything, she goes around a corner – and all of a sudden she’s surrounded by blackened corpses and dead silence. Dozens of people had died around her a moment ago without her hearing anything. And I could go on if I would feel like being nitpicky would be worth it but just looking at the surface you can already see how crappy this series is.

The episode fails to leave much of an impression with its unoriginal ideas and bland storytelling. An endless list of baffling little but significant mistakes also plagues the plot and makes it all the harder to get invested with the story. Not that anyone sane would want to, I guess. This series has nothing to offer which would be worth anyone’s interest, I think.

Episode-Rating: 2/10



About M0rg0th

We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.

Posted on January 7, 2012, in Anime, Reviews, Senki Zesshou Symphogear and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. Will you continue reviewing this anime?


    • I doubt M0rg0th will continue to review the anime but you can try convincing him otherwise. =D

      Could I suggest some form of torture? They usually work pretty well. =D


    • Haha, I will watch the second episode and see if it’s ridiculous enough to be made fun of. But I think the first episode wasn’t enough to warrant that kind of review. Guilty Crown has at least some substance to be made fun of. With a show like Symphogear I just end up bemoaning the stuff it lacks. It’s just a really bad series, nothing more.


  2. Ahhh….Symphogear. So juvenile, pretentious and sloppy.


    • It sure as hell is sloppy enough to not know its own focus. Is it about music? Is it about fighting? Is it about Love? I don’t know, it’s too bad in each respective area to focus on that. I can just imagine how the story will sort-of wobble like a drunken monkey from one thing to another. But luckily we don’t have to guess how it all ends since we got lame spoilers right from the start. It’s not like there’s supposed to be any tension or something like that…


      • OH GOD. How did I miss that screencap on your post? It’s so creepy. I really wish that’s not something with sexual subtext. Isn’t she supposed to be in middle school? What?

        Hmm. The lack of focus reminds me a lot of what Kamisama Dolls’ problem was. It just didn’t know what to do with itself, and Symphogear seems to have a similar problem. I had to roll my eyes with the bird symbolism, you can’t do symbolism if you don’t know what your basic themes are and that’s what Symphogear is doing. It can’t even get the fundamentals right before delving into deeper issues.


  3. @Mira: “It’s so creepy. I really wish that’s not something with sexual subtext. Isn’t she supposed to be in middle school? What?”
    I know… but what really baffles me is that ignoring the sexual subtext it makes no sense at all. I assume it’s about her considering school to be one exciting thing happening after another. But who the hell calls that having “climaxes”?! But I guess with the totally weird “Aufwachenschlagen” (which is complete wacko-German no one would actually say), it’s kind of to be expected that the usage of English isn’t much better in that regard.

    So it’s like some cheap fanfic written by someone who has seen too many mediocre animes?


    • actully i was think it give more magical girl madoka creepy stuff then pretty cure. and about the timeline if you didnt understend it between hibiki death which will happen in the future and the event where kanade saved her 2 years agpo


  4. this show isnt too bad. the character is made strong ,
    the sacrifice of the red hair oneechan at the beginning
    really leaves an impact to the series.too bad she has to die,
    but she is later replaced by the one that she saved,
    motivational and inspiring story, a passing of torch from
    previous heroine to the next one.
    it is not a bad series, its just that people love to
    compare this and that. if u want to compare,
    then nothing original, and everything is imitation.


  5. a heroine who reached 100 climaxes in a row?


  6. @elior1:
    What do you men, which timeline? There’s no timeline besides the one this series is employing. Of course there was this was goofy foreshadowing at the beginning which showed how it will all end. And there’s some fast-forwarding involved with the concert and what happens after that.
    Oh, and you’re right, in terms of creepiness it’s definitely more like Madoka Magica than Pretty Cure 😉 .


  7. For me, this is one of those series I would watch simply because it has a decent soundtrack and lots of fighting. Presumably. No other reason whatsoever.


  8. its pretty awesome if you will finish the whole anime because the starting is really boring and the red girl is the one who only died, not the yellow one


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