What's that saying? You know, don't judge a series by its first episode? That is a saying, right? If it is, never has that applied more so than with Berserk. Some much needed storytelling and even backstory of Guts was presented in this episode. Guts is cornered and eventually captured by the Holy Iron Chain Knights, lead by Lady Farnese. Apparently in his time with Band of the Hawk (the group he was associated with before some crazy shit went down, as alluded to in the flashbacks), Guts, also known as the black swordsman, and the band plotted treason against a royal family which lead to there being a bounty on their heads.
Guts is a fucking badass. Even with all his injuries from his previous battle with the zombie skeletons and a stake in his leg, he’s still able to chop fully armored soldiers in two, in one swoop mind you. The gore, despite being in CGI, is pretty awesome and highly entertaining. Let’s not forget about annoying Puck, the elf that I inadvertently referred to as a fairy (oops!). He’s still here, annoying and providing unnecessary comic relief.
The animation still suffers from the same issues, but this time around it’s bearable and easier to watch. The CGI to traditional animation is better balanced and isn’t all over the place. The flashbacks were traditional, making it feel “old school” and bringing up a sense nostalgia of watching the first series. There was a new issue in this episode, though. When Guts (spoiler: he escapes from his confinement) kidnaps Farnese after her topless self-flagellation, we’re exposed to her breasts. These breasts are completely bare: no nipple, no areola. Whether they were intentionally left like that or were under some sort of censoring is unknown at this time. It was just perplexing to see.
If the season continues on like this, with an actual story being told, we’re in for what started off as a piece of shit to a mediocre series. If anything, this episode gives me hope for the rest of the season and I’m glad to be on board for the long haul.
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