Kiznaiver First Impressions

kiznaiverI don’t get it.

Another creation of Trigger that leaves me wondering what I’ve been watching and why it even saw the light of day in the first place. Kiznaiver revolves around a group of younglings who are interconnected by some sort of super high tech software so they can experience pain inflected on one of their members. Or something. I don’t know.

KiznaiverHonestly at this point the inner workings of the Kiznaiver system, and how they’ve come up with this name, are still covered in mystery. What purpose does it have? Why does it even exist? What benefit has a system where you can share pain? The storytelling is still rather vague on this subject.

Trigger has an odd repertoire. It has shows that go totally overboard such as Gurren Lagan and the absurdist Kill la Kill. On the flipside you have Little Witch Academia which is one of personal favorites among Trigger productions. Kiznaiver floats a bit in between. It has over the top visuals, but is still rather tame. The lines are more subtle and the color scheme seems more developed to fit in within the 2016 line-up. The characters are odd, but not maniacal as we’ve seen with some of the character in Gurren Lagan and Kill la Kill which bordered on the psychopathic end of the spectrum.

KiznaiverThis mental split between absurdist and realism comes to life when looking at how the characters interact with each other. They aren’t going overboard with their conversations. They may seem overkill, but screaming and shouting is kept to a limit. The camera angels aren’t all over the place and the usage of over the top visuals to almost mock the characters at play, is absent. Kill la Kill queued one of weirdest graphical insertions in scenes that I couldn’t and still cannot comprehend. Kiznaiver is the wannabe anti establishment kid, but still doesn’t really know how to become one.

Another interesting development is the rather dialogue heavy first episode, which I’m not really used to in Trigger productions. Usually they would quickly insert some plot device to drive the story forward, but in Kiznaiver, the first time around feels like a speech accompanied by footage. It reminds me of the KyoAni way of doing namely; using a lot of dialogue right of the bat to justify its plot and to prepare the audience for the story ahead so it won’t become confusing all of a sudden.

If a show needs so much explanation to make the story understandable for its viewers, it’s my belief there is something wrong at the core of the production itself. Perhaps the production team just wants to get rid of unnecessary story elements that stall the action of the source material, pumping it all in the first episode so they can focus on elements that actually generate sales. I guess it’ll be doing fine on the music department though, since the intro song is one of the most J-pop-ish song I’ve seen in ages.

KiznaiverI’m wondering where Trigger will go with Kiznaiver. The first two episodes are rather dull and the story is absurd. May it be due to lack of context or just the plain stupidity of the main plot, the Kiznaiver-system. Kiznaiver centers around a lot of dialogue and doesn’t really know how to blend it with the action scenes we’re used to from this studio to spice it all up, keeping me wondering when some substance will enter the arena.


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