This season promises to be one of the very best yet with tons of titles releasing left and right and each streaming platform trying to bring out their very best anime. Not to mention the slew of delayed shows from last season all releasing this month, and we’re sure to have a whirlwind of incredible anime to enjoy.
One of the anime that’s premiered early on this season on FunimationCon 2020 was Deca-Dence. A post-apocalyptic anime set in the far future where man is forced to move and survive in small colonies in an enormous mobile iron fortress called the Deca-Dence. The anime had quite a lot of excitement behind it due to the premise and, more likely, the production cast and crew leading it.
The anime is being produced by Studio NUT, a studio known for making a lot of fan-favorites. It’s also being directed by Yuzuru Tachikawa, who directed the brilliant Mob Psycho 100 and Hiroshi Seko, working as the screenwriter for the anime. With a team like this, it’s no surprise one would expect great things from this anime.
On the Deca-Dence, everyone has a job. You’re either a solider out on the field fighting gadolls, or a tanker who works on the Deca-Dence. Tankers are grouped into butchers, who cut and strips armor off gadolls, cleaners/ armorers tasked in taking care of the exterior of the fortress, and more. In the first episode, we’re introduced to Natsume, an energetic, ambitious girl of undisclosed age. We’re shown a glimpse of her past life when she sneaks out to join her father out on the field, where she ultimately loses both him and her right arm to gadolls.
Flash forward to the present day, and Natsume is raised as a tanker. Though she aims to become a soldier and fight out in the field, she isn’t given a role due to her lost arm. She is then forced into being a cleaner were she meets a mysterious and apathetic man named Kaburagi, who’s her superior on the job.
In Lieu of Originality
While the central premise of the anime overall isn’t as groundbreaking, as most would expect since it’s been done multiple times, the tone and pacing of the first episode alone are quite admirable. Right from episode one, most will notice a lot of similarities between Deca-Dence and other popular anime as it borrows a lot of elements from them. For one, the flashback and exposition of the first episode bear a striking resemblance to Attack on Titan.
Not only that, but the tools we see the soldiers use is also reminiscent of the maneuver gear form the same anime. Other than that, it’s easy to see the dynamic between Natsume and Kaburagi being inspired form last season’s Arte, and the overall premise being similar to Gurren Lagann. While this may all be a coincidence, the similarities are, at the very least noteworthy.
An Excellent Execution
We’ve learned quite a lot from the first episode of the anime, such as the world, premise, and central characters, but a lot of details are also up in the air, such as the leadership of the ship, the mysterious events that occurred involving Kaburagi or even his past. However, this is a good thing as the first episode is meant to draw in an audience and give them a reason to return. In that regard, Deca-Dence is a success.
The last few minutes of the episode especially, is where it gets good. After the gadolls invade and the cleaners are thrown overboard, Kaburagi puts his skills to the test to save our main heroine and vanquish an impressive amount of gadolls. Both the animation and the soundtrack carries this scene quite well with distinct frames of fluid actions and a memorable theme to boot. It’s quite apparent the talent on the team behind anime is being put to good use. What I especially loved about these last few minutes is how abruptly it ends, leaving the viewer in awe.
I’m quite impressed with the first episode of Deca-Dence. While it’s quite lacking in terms of originality, the entertainment factor the first episode provides alone makes it a forgivable aspect. If the next episode manages to keep up the pacing and intrigue, we’ll have ourselves another great contender for the best anime this season.
Deca-Dence is available to stream on Funimation right now.
Did you watch the first episode of Deca-Dence? If so, what did you think of it? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.