Friday, November 20, 2015

'The Seven Deadly Sins' Is a Typical, Fun Shōnen Anime

The premise of The Seven Deadly Sins (or Nanatsu no Taizai in Japanese) has plenty of familiar Shōnen tropes.  It’s an anime that I felt I’ve seen many times before.  And yet it has enough charming elements to make it a reasonably worthwhile and fun anime to watch. 

TSDS (yep, I will be abbreviating it) tells the story of the titular Seven Deadly Sins, a group of immensely powerful elite knights that used to serve the Kingdom of Liones.  However, after being accused for murdering the Great Holy Knight Zaratras and plotting to overthrow the kingdom, they disbanded and went their separate ways.  Ten years later, their present locations and appearances are unknown, becoming the stuff of rumors.  Meanwhile, the Holy Knights have staged a coup d’état, imprisoned the king, and put Liones under their despotic rule.  Desperate to free the kingdom from the Holy Knights’ oppression, Princess Elizabeth goes on a journey to find the missing Seven Deadly Sins and to solicit their aid. 

I like the “recruitment” and “reunion” aspect of its story – how they come together one by one.  I love how the plot wraps each Sin’s identity in mystery, including the fact that their wanted posters don’t match their actual appearances and that they didn’t really know each other too well, discovering certain essential things about each other only during their current reunion.  Though none of the Seven Deadly Sins are remarkable enough to make it on any of my “fictional characters” lists soon, they are generally likable and do have some cool characteristics individually.    

One thing I really didn’t like about this anime that I feel I should mention here is the character Meliodas’ fondness for groping Elizabeth.  Meliodas actually has a lot of positive traits, but though his being a pervert is done for comedic effect (this is Japan, after all), I’m uncomfortable about this side of his character.  Considering also the fact that Meliodas is thousands of years old (though he has an appearance of an adolescent), then he’s technically a D.O.M., which only makes his advances on Elizabeth creepier.

TSDS’s first season is nothing extraordinary.  It doesn’t have much depth, but it does have great action, solid plot twists, a fantastic climax, intriguing world-building, likable (though unremarkable) characters, and an overall sense of adventure and fun.  And those are enough to draw me to its second season next year.

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