Review: Deciding to watch Queen’s Blade was the result of my long and intimate involvement in the Aniblogsphere. Without said external forces, I would not have picked this show in million years. And now I start to like fan-services, talk about bad influence…
This review covers both seasons of Queen’s Blade. The anime is mainly about the ultimate combat tournament called ‘Queen’s Blade’ which will decide who is the new queen of the land. Each participant, all pretty girls, has her own story to tell and lots of fan-services to offer along the way. As you can see, the story is so simple that it can be summarized in one short sentence. Plus, most of the plot devices, characters and dramatic twists are all stereotypical.
Leina, the leading lady of the show, is a spoiled child of the powerful count with family issues. She joins the Queen’s Blade to prove herself and to be free. Risty the thief seems wicked but is actually a kind person. Tomoe is an idealist who joins the fight to protect her country. You get the picture. All the characters are unique but ultimately quite formulaic. Just like the story, their backgrounds can be summarized in one sentence. But this is just an observatory statement, not an attack to the show. I think anime like Queen’s Blade which aims to please and entertain does not always have to be complex. Despite the generic characterization, the show makes it clear that it cares about the characters. Each girl has her moment to shine and all the girls interact with each other. Thanks to these interactions, each battle displays several layers of meaning. It is not just the fight for the throne but a personal struggle for the combatants as well.
What have I been talking about? This show is all about fan-service, isn’t it? So let’s talk about it then. I am not a veteran in this genre of anime so I was astounded by the sheer amount of fan-service the anime has to offer. This might sounds strange but I felt that the fan-service was the main source of suspense in all the fights. Considering the few pieces of clothes the girls wore in combat, you would have thought they would get some more serious wounds when struck by weapons. But no, despite the sharp looking blades, all they got was torn clothes and by being repeatedly struck, some ended up completely naked! And don’t get me started on the priestess’ ‘Holy Pose’ attack and Echidna’s ‘snake panty’!
Another thing I would like to make note is the world building. For any fantasy story, portraying the background fantasy world is extremely important. This is where Queen’s Blade fails. The show gets us well involved with the characters but not the setting. Yes, there is the world map flashed through the screen but the show has no sense of direction, literally. The characters appear at places completely different from each other; Edo-era like Japan, ruined Egyptian pyramid, western medieval city, the woods and everything in between. It was confusing. Nevertheless, considering the true purpose of Queen’s Blade, this setback can be easily dismissed.
Animation of Queen’s Blade is good but does not standout. Incredible effort is clearly put into animating the girls’ boobs judging from how they bounce and move according to every detail of the bodies’ movements.
In conclusion, Queen’s Blade is a fun show that is made for specific audience. If you are just looking for good show in general, I would not recommend Queen’s Blade. But if you are looking for fanservice, ecchi and possibly humor, you won’t be disappointed because Queen’s Blade does not shove these things into your throat ruthlessly but presents them to you within a well crafted anime as a whole.
Rating: B (but seriously, rating hardly matters for this show)
Title: Queen’s Blade (season 1 and 2)
Genre: Ecchi, fantasy, action
Released date: April 2, 2009 – June 18, 2009 and September 24, 2009 – December 10, 2009 respectively
Episode: 12 for each season
Director: Kinji Yoshimoto
Animated by: ARMS