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First Impressions – Boukyaku Battery

Boukyaku Battery is a bit of an odd duck for me. As a seemingly straightforward (no bogus flimflammery) baseball manga adaptation it should have been right in my strike zone.  But sometimes I get anti-sleeper vibes, and this was a series where I did. Just something about the premise and the look and the tenor of the reader commentary about it didn’t sit right with me.  Plus, the fate of any series not on the front burner at MAPPA always figures to be a dubious proposition.

Honestly, the first word that pops into my mind with this premiere is “weird”.  The art and animation is a bit weird actually (clearly MAPPA is not budgeting much on this one), but I’m talking more about the writing. The “perspective” if you will.  I’m not sure where this series is coming from but it’s somewhere out there. Some of that comes from the Miyano Mamoru character, Kaname. Miyano is pretty off the wall with his performance (though I admit that “Chihaya” line made me LOL), and while that’s obviously one of his go-to personas, this kid is one weird dude (and I’m not buying the amnesia as an excuse).

Amnesia is at the heart of this premise, which finds an “oblivion” battery (that’s the English title) who terrorized youth baseball wind up at a no-name public school with no baseball team after the catcher gets amnesia. Amnesia is a cliche but okay, I’ll wait for the explanation on that one. So why did they go to a school with no baseball team?  Diid Kiyomine (the pitcher) just give up on the idea of anyone else being able to catch his pitches (I mean, get over yourself), or did he know a baseball club was being formed?  The main supporting character is Yamada, a sad-sack kid who gave up baseball after being humiliated by the titular pairing. It’s an arch-typical Kaji Yuuki performance, with all that implies.

All in all this just didn’t work for me, though there were moments that I did enjoy. I didn’t find Kaname funny, and that’s a problem since his antics dominate much of the episode. The humor generally is very broad, with lots of stage falls and face-pulling. And I didn’t really like any of the characters, though there’s still time for that to change. If the baseball stuff winds up being good that will make up for a lot, but it’s too soon to know whether that will be the case. First episodes are hard – I’ll see how I like the second one here, but first impressions (and that’s what these are called, after all) aren’t especially favorable.

The post First Impressions – Boukyaku Battery appeared first on Lost in Anime.

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