In the year 526, humanity became aware of witches and their sorcery. A half man, half beast mercenary known as a “fallen beast” desires to be a full human. He meets a witch named Zero, who offers to help him become human if he helps her get back “The Book of Zero”, which bandits stole from her. This show is a very strong and promising start for an adventure anime. There’s not many out there that actually go in an adventure in the world they take place in, I imagine due to the cost of all the different backgrounds. The last one I remember doing so was Chaika and while I enjoyed that a lot, I hope this anime doesn’t go down the same road as Season 2 did. There’s a lot of showing versus telling in this show so far, as well, which is already the mark of better storytelling than you typically get from an anime, so I’m down to continue watching this as it grows through the story. Hopefully it stays on track.
Their characterization is also pretty well done. I like how Mercenary isn’t all up for joining up immediately, but instead is as wary as his history would imply. Only the goodness inside of him keeps him from abandoning her in the woods, which is a good character feature in the tank of the series. That they take the time to make sure the minutia of life in this medieval-style world is shown in some regard also speaks to a good understanding of how to build up a world to be believable within the rules stated as the series sets itself up. Similar to this, the difference between magic and sorcery is also interesting and reminds me of the way D&D tackles the different magic, though it’s more warlock and Wizard than Sorcerer and Witch that this anime describes the difference as.
Zero is a fun character. Super powerful is fine if you can only beat one or two powerful people alone, because once more numbers, even weak ones, start coming up (as I can only imagine will happen in the series), the Mercenary is going to prove his worth as a companion. I really loved this first episode. I like that Zero has an attitude on her, but it’s not your typical little anime girl. She’s wise beyond her years, and without being an annoying tsundere like say, Victorique from Gosick. I especially liked her voice acting. All told, I’m excited for the future of this series, and this along with Re:Creators bodes well for this season of anime even setting aside the popular anime like Attack On Titan and Boku No Hero Academia.