Durarara!! Ep. 1

Could it be? A ray of light in the darkness of the new season? I’ve been fooled before (Trapeze and to a certain extent Bakemonogatari), but so far Durarara!! is shaping up nicely.

To be honest there isn’t a lot to base my positive reaction on; so far all we’ve seen is a ton of character introductions that didn’t actually say much and a so-so fight scene. The art is passable but not really anything to write home about (E Minor points out that like a lot of lazy animators they can’t be assed to color in background characters). The plot has only barely started to unfold, for all I know it could devolve into harem antics.

That said, anime these days is so formulaic that you can partially judge a show by what it doesn’t have in the first episode. And so far there’s been no whiny little sisters, no magical quests to save the world, no fanservice, and no fucking highschool uniforms. When so many shows have been striking the same note for so damn long it feels like you’d watch anything to get away from the same old routine. So while I can’t yet recommend Durarara!! on its own merit, I can say that while it has a chance of sucking, most everything else this season is guaranteed to suck. Really now, what else are you gonna watch? Chu-Bra?

And in fairness to Durarara!!, the first episode was pretty engaging. It’s set in a fun part of Tokyo and there are a ton of characters, mysterious online chats, gangsters, and some kind of demonic headless catgirl. If nothing else it should prove interesting, which puts it head and shoulders above the pack.

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16 Replies to “Durarara!! Ep. 1”

    1. What, you missed Horo ? Looks like you just fast forwarded the episode, as usual.

      Yo are you just gonna drop boring pedantic trolls on everything I write?

      “Stay away from my anime!” Old Besaid Woman, Final Fantasy X: The Return of the Anime

  1. I really enjoyed this. It’s rare, but I really had no complaints. I mean it was one of those orthodox first episodes that you might expect for a particularly long anime, (even if it probably isn’t going to be that long.) It served its purpose for setting up and getting people (or just me,) interested. It doesn’t seem to have a clear objective yet, but at least we have a set of plot points to think about while waiting for the next episode, I suppose.

    1. Unlike Fin, I’m pretty lukewarm about Durarara!!. It’s better than most of the crap this season, but I have two primary issues.

      First, it’s the same complaint I had with Baccano!: too many characters. Is this gonna be a long series? I dunno, but I doubt most of these characters will be properly fleshed out either way. We’ll see, though.

      Second, the conversations through the IM client is really just lazy exposition prettied up a bit. Considering how they didn’t bother to color in the background characters, it wouldn’t surprise me if those chats were another cost-cutting method.

      I’m interested in watching more, but at the moment, I think it’s far from being a great anime.

      1. Maybe they’ll all die? That’ll simplify things, certainly. Saves some resources, definitely. I haven’t seen one of those “everybody dies” anime in a long time.

  2. I’m hoping that the presence of a clear protagonist (unlike Baccano!, about which I’d agree with E Minor) will help stave off aimlessness and maybe give the show a bit of an emotional hook – so with any luck a lot of those swarming side-characters will be wallpaper. Then, quite possibly the keen young fellow from this week will now bugger off into the background.

    For me at least the incentive to keep watching is less the absence of generic bugbears than the presence of actual positives in the form of reasonably engaging dialogue and pleasing background music. I’d concede that it’s probably wrong to read too much into such basic indications of competence, and that better starts have produced bad or average series. The criminal smoking scene was probably the highlight this ep anyway, a nice touch.

    1. What a world we live in where saying “moe sucks” is ballsy. But I’m glad you decided to contribute to our “boring ‘reviews'” with that scintillating comment.

  3. If they adopt it the way I figure they’d go, there is more or less ONE main character for the first story arc. After that, more wide open.

  4. It is indeed.
    I’m up to the 3rd episode.
    Alongside with Aoi Bungaku and Bakemonogatari , this is one of my favorite anime of the last couple of seasons.

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