Episode 1, To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts
You never know what to expect from a new series. This of course leads to anticipation but can leave you disappointed. The first episode of To Abandoned Sacred Beasts, entitled . . . To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts, left me desiring more. I wasn’t a bad debut episode, just not a particularly great one. Of course the first episode is tasked with setting the series up, resulting in a sometimes unsatisfying introduction. Hank and his unit of Incarnates (super soldiers) were created to turn the tide of war. The episode begins with a frontal assault by the North, they’re slaughtered. The first question I had was why get your army killed if you have the Incarnates?
Predictably, the Incarnates lay waste to the southern forces. The designs of the beast weren’t that creative. On guy just gains horse legs becoming a boring centaur. Most of the beast forms are likely to be inspired either directly or indirectly by mythological creatures. Why one person turns into on thing over the other isn’t explained. My best guess is that it’s random. In the future I’m certain that we will see why these soldiers were chosen. The Incarnates are lead by Hank Henriette, his second in command Cain Madhouse and the creator of the Incarnates, Elaine. If you couldn’t guess from the name Cain predictable becomes a traitor.
Before this moment one of the Incarnates, Ari goes berserk. He kills soldiers from both sides during his rampage. The soldiers from the north open fire and while incapacitated he commits suicide rather than lose himself. This leads Hank to swear an oath, which will become his motivation for the series. It will be the responsibility of the Incarnates to hunt down and kill each other when they lose their minds. As I mentioned Cain betrays Elaine and Hank, but after Elaine attempts to kill Hank. She has decided that killing all the beast then herself is the only answer she can think of. Cain is the typical villain, his name and his long hair were a dead give away.
Hank hunts down one of the Incarnates during the ending credits (I guess that’s going to be a thing in anime now). While it’s short, I did enjoy it as Hank appears to turn into a werewolf. Overall, this series is mediocre. The animation is so so and the story needs to be fleshed out more. I don’t care much for anime music so I won’t pass any judgement on that aspect, but the story did have some comedic moments that didn’t quiet last. I didn’t care about the romance between Hank and Elaine. Nor did I care that she died. Lastly the fan-service in the form Liza while not gratuitous feels unnecessary (maybe that’s true of all fan-service). If she suppose to be a serious soldier, why have her spilling out of her top. It’s not the end of the world though. I give this series a few more episodes before deciding if it’s worth my time.