One of the reasons I fucken love anime so god damn much is because I love to challenge mainstream social acceptance. I’m always on the lookout for shows that tackle difficult or controversial subjects in a way people would find strange, piss them off, or even think is little bit sick. And anime touches on a lot of these topics. Predominantly viewpoints on children. And while the setting of the following anime isn’t all that sick and demented. It still tackles a very taboo notion. And that’s…child soldiers. Or I guess in this case…evil child soldiers.
Fellow human filth I’m the Angry Misanthropist Freak. And this is my review of… Youjo Senki. Or in English… Saga of Tanya the Evil.
This is one of those animes that really throws a strange concept into your face and expects you to roll right along with it. Case in point child solders. But see here’s the twist: While our main character is in fact a young girl named Tanya Degurechaff – it’s supposed to be German – the girl actually started out as an unnamed japanese business man. One who just so happened to be both an atheist and an asshole who likes to walk all over people. But one day after ruining the life of one of his employees he kills him by pushing him into the path of an oncoming train. But right before he dies time is stopped by a god like being he comes to call “Being X” who then reincarnates him into an alternate universe World War 1 setting as a little orphan girl due to his being sick of humanities lack of faith. He does this to put him into a dire world where he would have no choice but to accept god’s existence.
And when she – I’m just going to call him a “she” from now on, because he’s a she throughout entire anime. Eventually she finds out that she possesses a great deal of magical power and that the military seeks people with outstanding aptitude. So, she decides to join at the ripe age of nine as a means of assuring her a decent future in this new world. She thinks that if she plays her cards right she’ll be able to live a comfortable life on the rear lines and away from danger. Unfortunately a serious of highly unfortunate events occur. Including a surprise attack by the enemy during a training mission…. which she completely obliterates.
And these occurrences as well as a special gem “blessed” by Being X that gives her equipment a supercharge unfortunately impresses her superiors and as a result of this she’s put in command of a platoon of combat mages. A big problem seeing as how if she dies in this world there is no second reincarnation and she’ll basically be sentenced to hell. Despite this she still remains defiant towards this god like entity.
And what I found funny about this is that what this man sees would literally be enough to convince even the most convinced of atheists. A deity literally showed himself and spoke through other humans, twists time and reality and takes over inanimate objects and corpses. Why this man/little blond bitch isn’t graveling and kissing this mother fucker’s toes and calling him her lord and saver I do not know. This being has done more than enough to convince anyone that he is in fact god. Even fucken Dusty Smith would become a christen after going through what this mother fucker has gone through. And I guess that’s this animes hidden humor in a way. Defying god in whatever way this stubborn ass character can. And one of the grate ironies about this is that the super charged magical gem bestowed upon Tanya by being X can only be activated through prayer.
And you might be thinking that since she’s a little girl the whole leadership role doesn’t fit her. But really Tanya’s attitude and maturity here really offsets the little girl factor by a lot. This little bitch is a fucken beast. And by that I literally mean she is a straight up monster at heart. She often tries to shroud her evil with the persona of a normal little girl who just happens to be a solider. But through her internal monologue. We come to understand that she’s actually a psychopathic mean little cunt.
And it’s not really all war related evil with her. We see her in the beginning doing whatever she can in order to stay away from the fighting. She’s just naturally amoral and ruthless. There was a part in the anime where she manipulates a fellow soldier who was more concerned about his daughter then with the war. And in turn causes him to drop right out of the academy she was studying at in order to secure her position as one of the elite students. She is just an evil little bitch all around. And I fucken love it. Sometimes I even forgot that she’s a little girl just by how she coordinates and orders her squad around like an actual commander. And just how she conducts herself all together is almost awe inspiring. The fact she’s a little girl doesn’t even matter to her or her squad mates and even I forgot that she’s supposed to be a freaken nine-year-old at times. But then the anime throws me a joke or two regarding her height and it makes you remember.
However, that humor is of course over shadowed by the sheer overall fucken production quality this anime posses. Case in point the depiction of the warfare. I fucken love cool tech in fiction. Cool and unique weaponry in fiction is always fascinating to me. And this anime has this in abundance. And it is a perfect combination of magic and World War 1 weaponry. The fighting here takes place mainly in the air. Tanya and her squad all fly using special packs in there uniforms that contain gems powering there equipment. Her and her little entourage of warriors uses all this cool magical technology to fly around acting as mainly air support for soldiers on the ground all the while engaging other mages in aerial combat. The enemy themselves sometimes fly around on these metal mounts that resemble horses (or skis which I saw as more of the dumber looking ones). All the combatants here are seen firing magically enhanced bullets at each other though. Ones that explode. And we see both sides casting various spells that form these huge ass magical glyphs and shit while also forming these awesome looking shields made from pure magical energy to block incoming salvo. And it’s all just meshed into this awesome ass spectacle of unique and very entertaining action scenes. And it’s all fucken amazing.
If I was to score this on cool depictions of magic and action alone…this anime would get a flat out 10 out of 10 from me because it all looks amazing. I can’t express how much I fucken love sorcery in anime as long as it’s done right. I grew up playing Magic the Gathering. That’s my fucken childhood right there. I love when a story has in depth sorcery with its own deep ass set of laws and methods of use. And if something like that is done right in an anime of all things then it’s the best thing ever. And often magic in animes like Fairy Tale for example fail extremely at this because it’s all portrayed in stupidly cartoony ass ways. This is anything but that. It’s not overly extravagant or childish in the least. The particular magic here is without a doubt used for war and it makes the notion of a child using this shit all the more provocative with awesome depictions of blood and gore.
And as for the animation as a whole I was really quite pleased with it actually. This is actually by a brand new studio to enter the scene called studio NUT. While this is there first standalone work the director Yutaka Uemura has a rather impressive track record having directed Terror in Resonance and Punch Line. Satoru Hirayanagi who was Art Director is also famous for his work on Guin Saga and the second season of Demon of the Fleeting Blossom. So, new studio or not the animation had some pretty awesome talent behind the visuals here and it shows. The music was a damn good addition too. Even if the list of work composed by composer Shuji Katayama is pretty short. Sound design on the other hand was handled by Yoshikazu Iwanami who’s worked on Ajin, Berserk and Blame. All anime’s with exceptional animation and sound design. I do say I hated the opening theme song though. Myth & Roid is a J-pop group who actually has done only anime songs as far as I know and their actually pretty damn good. Especially the ending theme they did for Overlord. But that constant “ora ora ora” they did for the opening theme on this particular project was just really annoying.
I can honestly give you a solid recommendation on animation and action alone here. But then…. sadly…. there is the unfortunate stigma this anime is carrying. And that’s in regards to it’s very obvious throw backs to the Nazis of empirical era Germany. Case in point the uniforms and how this is basically a fictional retelling eluding to WW1 Germany vs Europe. There’s very little question that there is a few throw backs to Nazism thrown in here and there.
And honestly…I really don’t give two fucken Swastika licking, Jew smiting fucken shits about these ties. Because at the end of the day these are merely qualities and historical aspects mixed in as a backdrop for this FICTIONAL setting. I mean where the fucken Nazi’s flying on technologically advanced metal horses while shooting at all those fucken Coys? No! I really hate that I have to remind people that this is fiction. But here I go again. This is fucken fiction! Hence forth the big fat ass declaimer at the end of every fucken episode.
This has no relation to the real world and its history other then a few traits of the setting. No relation to actual groups, peoples, Moffen’s or Fuhrer’s. So, shut the fuck up. I no longer give a shit about the japanese alliance with the Nazis during World War 2. Nore do they. And as for their own little shit neo-Nazi sub culture a lot of conservative politicians here in the states like to point out. Guess what. We have those assholes here in the states to. There’s also some in Russia and France. There are fucken neo-Nazi scum everywhere, so shut up. This anime is awesome in both animation, action, story and setting. And all this isn’t to say that the main character here is a nice girl who you would want your fucken daughter to have tea party with. She’s a down right fucken monster who you do not want to fuck with. Seriously. This is the kind of girl pedo lolicons like me don’t want to fucken touch. I would no doubt end up very dead.
Now, in regards to how well the anime follows the aforementioned source material: The light novel serious by Carlo Zen and illustrated by Shinobu Shinotsuki. Well that’s kind of an interesting story. You see…even though I found translation of the novels I got bored reading them. Why? Because the thing about me and books is that too much exposition can really kill it for me. And the first few chapters of the book had that in abundance. Too much exposition in place of action and dialogue makes any book seem unnecessarily dragged out and boring. Telling instead of showing really turns me off. The original writer could’ve gone a little lighter with the long ass excerpts of showing me this world instead of telling me about it. But in the end they didn’t and I gave up on the novels all together. I only read like…I don’t know… 1 or 2 fucken chapters – and god these were long ass chapters by the way, my god. Afterwards I stopped reading the first book and focused entirely on the anime because it was obviously way more fun.
But from what I did read I saw that the book followed the beginning pretty well. All through out the battle between Tanya and those attacking mages all the way up to the testing of that new gear by that weird scientist guy was all covered nicely. So that’s a plus. But beyond that I don’t know. I however wouldn’t be surprised if it veered away from the books at some point, predominantly near the ending. Because guess what…. the story ends on a bit of a cliff hanger. The war that these characters were fighting wasn’t over. In fact, it was kind of won near the end but then it just kind of started right back up again. So if the anime follows the books all throughout…I don’t know. But the ending of the anime left it felling incomplete. So, you’ll have to find out for yourself if the ending was in the book or not. But let’s be serious. Even if you read a lot of books and watch anime…would you rather read a book with pages and pages of exposition and no action when you could be watching this. Yeah, didn’t think so.
In the end though Yojo Senkai is no doubt my favorite anime of the entire winter 2017 season. I highly recommend that you watch this if you’re a fan of fantasy war settings with some extremely awesome Magitech. The combat and all the awesome fictional warfare depicted here was absolutely fucken phenomenal. This shit should definitely be on your watch list. Youjo Senki…Saga of Tanya the Evil gets a very well deserved…8 out of 10. And gets the Blood and Gore and Action Seals of Approval.
The only thing holding it back from a 9 or a 10 is the ending and how a lot of idiots might get pissed off by the little girl aspect or the Nazi throwbacks. But if there should be a second season that has a decent ending – I’m saying this now because I don’t review second seasons as it just dumps a bigger work load on me – I would probably bump the score up to a 9. But as of this review…it’s going to stay an 8. Regardless I highly suggest that if you have something against Nazi throwbacks you should still just shut the fuck up, bite your fucken tongue and watch this anyways. As of this review its available on the internet for free so you don’t even have to fucken pay for it. I recommend that you do though so you can help support Studio Nut. And I say this very rarely. I haven’t recommended someone BUY an anime since Death Note. Nut has proven with this first project of theirs that there indeed something special. And it leaves me wondering just what they have in store for me next. And if you are one of those types to see something minor and insignificant and get triggered by it. Stay the fuck away from this and leave the people who actually enjoy it alone.
And with that I’m fucken done.