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The Silver Guardian – First Impressions

The Silver Guardian (Gin no Guardian; Yín Zhī Shǒu Mù Rén) was originally a Chinese manhua that’s being adapted in to a Chinese-Japanese anime, produced by the studio Emon and directed by Masahiko Ohkura (Road to Naruto: The Movie). It’s a short-form, fantasy series about a guy named Suigin who is an over-powered character that’s got to kick the asses of many undead creatures every night to protect the world. I haven’t read an actual synopsis for this anime as I’ve heard that the synopsis really kills the suspense and has turned a lot of folks off of giving the show a shot. I feel like a supreme trope will pop out and slap me in the face, however, for the moment I really like not knowing what the hell’s happening.

The animation isn’t bad. You can tell that it uses 3DCG to enhance a lot of the action scenes in the anime, as well as certain parts that focus a lot on in-game stuff (like kids playing on the computer, hordes of monsters, etc.), but it hasn’t been awkwardly displaced like many 3DCG implementations tend to be. The protagonist does appear to be over-powered, but it’s not in an insane One-Punch Man kind of way. I don’t really know how to describe it. It’s quite average, but I liked watching him kick butt. Maybe I’m just a bona fide sucker for fantasy. There is a kawaii-kitty companion, which raises my bias way more than I should admit. :3

The first episode was quite vague in relaying the overall plot. It introduced us to the main characters and the environment that will end up being the main focus of the story, but as to how or why our protagonist is there, doing whatever he’s doing, is presented as a mystery. The only real hook are the undead creatures, the kitty-friend, and the aesthetically pleasing visuals. I was intrigued enough to check out episode two, which essentially flashes back in time to show us how everything became so screwy. The story is unfolding a lot more smoothly, although there are still many questions hanging about in the air.

Each episode is 10 minutes long, not including 3 minutes of an opening and ending song, which I feel is vastly insufficient for an action-fantasy, but I could be wrong. Only time will tell here. Overall, I like not knowing what’s happening. This element of suspense definitely makes me want to check out how the series will develop over the course of the season. If it does turn into something severely tropey, I’m going to hold out hope that decent writing and an unexpected dash of originality somewhere will help keep it interesting.

You can watch The Silver Guardian on CrunchyRoll on Saturdays at 6:30am PST!

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