So, I just finished watching Date A Live season 1. Moving on to season two once I finish my meal too, but I figured while things were cooking I might as well type up a quick review of things so far for everyone.
Now, what can I say about Date A Live? Well, first off, I honestly don’t know if it is “live” as in “to live” or “live” as in “that’s a live wire”, but that’s English for you, eh? LOL That aside, the show is thus far pretty good for a supernatural dating RomCom. The basic idea is that the world (or at least the area the story takes place in, there’s no mention of if this extends further than that region) is plagued with a strange spacial distortion which seems to basically erase whatever happens to be in the blast radius, not unlike the chronal distortions in Future Diary or the destruction zones from Trinity Seven (this seems to be a common problem in Japan, be sure to bring an umbrella when visiting in case of falling debris). Very scary stuff.
The main character, Shido Itsuka, is a man with either supernaturally bad or supernaturally good luck. You’ll see what I mean in the first episode alone. Speaking of, I love the first episode, totally sets the tone pretty perfectly, and yet is so relatable in the first five or so minutes that I instantly fell in love with the series then. Heck, I’d watch a Slice of Life with just Shido and Kotori if someone made it. Specifically, Kotori, Shido’s little sister, wakes him up by jumping on his bed. What follows must be seen, because it had me in stitches and I don’t want to ruin that for anyone, but is TOTALLY how things play out between siblings, if my own brother and I are good examples.
Anyway, by the end of the first episode, however, Shido’s world gets turned solidly on his head (I think even literally for a short while) as he meets a beautiful girl called “Princess” who is the cause of the Spatial Disruptions, and his little sister is apparently the head of a super-secret organization that wants to protect girls like Princess (called Spirits) from being killed by what is essentially the JDF special task force for killing supernatural things (officially the AST, or Anti-Spirit Task force). How might this be done, you ask? Well, it seems Shido has a special power of his own: his kiss can cause a Spirit who is happy enough to lose their power. Sounds dorky, and in a way it is, I’ll be honest, but it’s also comedy gold as the entire point is for him to play with these girls, girls that typically know almost nothing beyond that they are not human and humans seem to want to kill them, and then date them and cause them to “fall for [Shido]” so he can seal their powers. But it doesn’t end there folks: if the girl then becomes too angry or emotional after the initial sealing, they can actually take the powers back, so, not only does he have to get them to love him, he has to make them stay at least not-pissed off at him after they give their hearts to him.
As you can expect, a lot of the screen time is taken up by plot contrivances which threaten the happiness of one or more of the girls. But there’s more than just that. First off, one of the girls in Shido’s life is a AST higher up and classmate, who takes his practice at seduction to heart. considering that it’s her job to kill the people he’s trying to protect… Yeah, that one causes some pretty big problems (she’s also a bit of a Yandere, though not NEARLY as bad as Yuno).
In addition, by the end of the first series, things start to get really heavy when (oops, spoilers) happens and things get rather dark, as well as the introduction of some plot beyond “magical girl shows up, let’s date her!” and “magical girl has been sealed, hijinks ensue while they try and keep her happy!”. All in all, I found the progression very nice and rather organic, and I hope that the change in tone carries on into season two.
Additionally, there’s apparently a whole slew of Visual Novels. I’m going to have to take a look for those later and see if any got imported. In the end, I’d say that this is one of my favorite series in the genre since Fate/Stay Night, and I’m glad that I’ve started watching it on Hulu.
The Ranting Loon