Anime of Tomorrow
Impression – superbly grand, but hampered by some problems
I’m of the opinion that a little more time could have been spent waiting to get the series released in one 24 episode block without this huge lapse in pace, especially when it ends on such a big cliffhanger. Because Fate/Zero is a prequel, it also means that in order to keep consistency with canon, the story needs to conform to some rigid guidelines to fit what comes after. Knowing that none of this is going to end well puts an emotional barrier between the viewer and a lot of the characters, prohibiting real attachment. The result is that the viewer feels like an outside observer waiting for the inevitable, rather than wanting to get invested in something that’s ultimately going to be futile. It’s sad because the new side characters are colorful and there’s a lot of spirit in their personalities. But I don’t want to suggest that Fate/Zero is a waste of time. It’s gorgeous and emotional, but also deeply thought provoking; delving into some really fun, dark corners of the human psyche. The twisted personalities of Ryuunosuke and Caster manage to contort morality to match their own ambitions and that’s always an interesting exercise of mental gymnastics. However, the fact that this survival game that is the Holy Grail War has thus far resulted in no casualties for the participants is a telling sign that the writers are pandering to the fanbase rather than thinking things through organically. Fate/Zero is beautiful and epic to watch in the way that Type Moon always puts forward, but it’s not nearly as immersive as I’d hoped it would be.