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Mar 05
2011

Black Rock Shooter OVA

Hey guys! Tofu here, this would be my first ani-post on Sekijitsu and there’s nothing else more epic than to take the first step into the world of ani-blogging by starting off with a Black Rock Shooter post! Which will be the first ever insight on Sekijitsu just for you curious folks who are still wondering if it’s worth watching or not. Let’s get started!

We first take a look into the alternate world where Black Rock Shooter (Left) and Gold Saw (Right) begin to fight in mid-air, exchanging devastating blows. After Black Rock Shooter falls to the ground, Gold Saw follows up with a powerful stab through the chest, which Black Rock Shooter could not avoid.

The title of the anime, “Black Rock Shooter” shows up as we are then taken into the real world of a young girl named Kuroi Mato. (Voiced by Hanazawa Kana) Mato leaves for junior high after waking up, but before that, she takes in the beautiful scenery on top of a hill close by. Mato then realizes she’s going to be late for the train and heads off! Meanwhile, Black Rock Shooter is staring into the far distance.

...5 centimeters per second...

She's still alive after a stab through the chest!?

While Mato walks to school, Mato catches an elegant girl, named Yomi, (voiced by Miyuki Sawashiro) walking to school. During class, Mato decides to check up Yomi’s name on the student list during class. Meanwhile, we see another glimpse of the alternate world where Black Rock Shooter is walking towards a destination.

Conversational tip #1: Mention the other person’s height

"I walk a lonely road, the only one that I have ever known"

After school assembly, Mato gathers up all the courage she has and converses with Yomi. The two becomes great friends afterwards. On the other hand, Black Rock Shooter has finally reached her destination, what can it possibly be!?

On the other side of the alternate world, an unknown figure stares towards the distance… We then move back to  the school where Mato shows off her basketball skills during club practice, while the volleyball team catches Yomi’s interest. Yomi then signs up for volleyball so she could be close to Mato during club activities. Whilst in the alternate world, Black Rock Shooter faces off with a new enemy named Dead Master.

After school, Mato finds something that looks the same as her phone strap and buys it for Yomi. She then takes her to the special hill earlier in the anime. Mato asks Yomi to stay and live here with her and Yomi replies yes. Meanwhile, the battle between Black Rock Shooter and Dead Master continues!

On the other side of the alternate world, the unknown girl leaps from the cliff and disappears. At school, Mato injures herself and is being aided by a  unknown girl. Yomi waits for Mato after school worried sick. She then sees Mato accompanied by the unknown girl but is fine. We skip all the way towards the second year of junior high school where Mato and Yomi aren’t in the same class anymore but rather, the  same girl, who is introduced as Yuu (voiced by Kana Asumi), is in the same class as Mato.

Yomi: “Let me show you some of my PRIVATE videos Mato” Mato: “Uhh... I… I don’t know what to say Yomi…”

Mato and Yuu are getting closer while Yomi seems to be left out during school. As a good friend she doesn’t want to tell Mato about this jealousy of hers, but instead, keeps it bottled up until one day, Yomi falls into despair and disappears. Whilst in the alternate world, Black Rock Shooter was able to finally defeat the two flying skulls. Dead Master then lures Black Rock Shooter into a long, dark hall.

After realizing Yomi had disappeared, Mato is desperate to contact her, but Yomi doesn’t reply. She soon falls into sadness and cries on her bed. While on the other side, Black Rock Shooter continues to fight against Dead Master but soon gets defeated.

Mato is ever more depressed the next day whilst lying on her bed till Yomi sends a text message with nothing in it. Out of desperation, Mato decides to bike ride out to the hill, in hope she’d meet Yomi. She finds the phone strap that Yomi had left on the ground. Mato retrieves it and desperately calls out in the open for Yomi. Her feelings triggered a gate to the alternate world to open.

Black Rock Shooter, who is now chained up by Dead Master, forces out of the chains and walks towards Dead Master. Shocked as to how strong Black Rock Shooter is, Dead Master starts to panic. She steps back towards the edge, where she trips and falls, but Black Rock Shooter grabs hold of her just in time.

As Black Rock Shooter embraces Dead Master; Yomi, who is engulfed by Dead Master, struggles to force her out. After a relentless struggle, Yomi was able to shove Dead Master out of her body (who possessed her) over the edge where she fell and disappeared; leaving an unconscious Yomi in Black Rock Shooter’s arms. With Yomi in her arms, Black Rock Shooter escapes from the crumbling alternate world.

Mato enters the alternate world and is asked by Black Rock Shooter if she wants to save Yomi. Mato does not wish to save Yomi but to walk side by side with her once again. Black Rock Shooter acknowledges her resolve and is asked who she is. As their souls merge together, Black Rock Shooter announces her name to Mato and leaves us with goose bumps as the end credits play.

WATASHI WA...

BLACK-A!! ROCK-A!! SHOOT-AR!!!!

After the credits, the three girls walk home together after school, but Yuu seems very lost in despair…

End Thoughts: What a huge post! I’m exhausted! But I have to say, those were the best ever fighting scenes I’ve ever come across in my life! Never have I seen such a smooth yet exhilarating fight between two people! Mato is just LOVE in Black Rock Shooter. She’s voiced by Kana Hanazawa and has a positive and fun personality towards her, which is adorable!

The art in Black Rock Shooter is absolutely amazing! How the fights between Black Rock Shooter and Dead Master flowed gave me goose bumps. The use of the camera angles where Black Rock Shooter travelled towards the church was well done in capturing the art in Black Rock Shooter. During the hill scenery in the real world, you could feel the warmth of the town from just staring into the distance with Mato, giving you this unexplainable feeling.

Although there are many conspiracies towards its storyline and plot, I for one, believe it was well made. I understood the connection between the two worlds and the main characters and it just moved me… I’d say that the alternate characters like Black Rock Shooter and Dead Master represent their inner self or feelings they hold, Mato as a heroic trying to lend a hand of help and Yomi with jealousy of a new friend, you could say it’s like a debate inside of you between your different emotions but represented in an alternate world with their inner selves fighting each other.

Remember that this is a circle narrative so basically Mato at the end becomes Black Rock Shooter and goes into the alternate world to find and defeat the darkness within Yomi’s heart. I’ve seen this at least 6 times already and I still get goose bumps! But of course, there are many haters out there for Black Rock Shooter because its story line is said to be weak…

Even so, I would recommend this show to anyone willing to give it a shot or those who like circle narratives. Sadly in the present, there is no hard facts on whether there will be a continuation on Black Rock Shooter or if it will just stay as a stand-alone OVA.

Rating: I’ll give this show a 8.5 out of 10 overall regarding a whole audience opinion. Ever so more, thanks for giving up your time to read this huge BRS post, till next time, take us out Mato!

Ja ne~! <3

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  • Ruby says:

    Hey wasn't this the same sample post that you used to get in SJ? I kinda remember how you were asking Bass about it XD

    I would love to see another BRS OVA, even tho I don't really like the whole plot and all, I love the animation. It was kinda confusing trying to piece together what's going on, maybe the actual game would explain more of BRS? xD and yeah the fight scenes were amazing! *.* harhar I can see a lot of yuri stuff going on, both Yomi and whats her name is jealous of whoever Mato spends more time with, it makes me feel sorry for her~ imo she should just ditch both girls and find other friends in order to avoid all the drama! XD

    • *shush* No one's supposed to know about that! xD Nah I'm just kidding.

      Another OVA would be nice but I want a series however they plan to do that. The game is a sidetrack off the actual story and also there's WHITE Rock Shooter in the game, which is interesting~ Yu-yuri!??! LOLS I wish it doesn't turn into Yuri but I was never much of a good person as to only have one best friend, sometimes people don't like to stick to the other person too much if you get what I mean, but if your all good with it and your like best mates then that's fine I guess ^^ Mato is our innocent and cute protagonist who just doesn't know how she's affecting others.

  • AWESOME post, Tofu!!

    ahh, what could get any better than BRS. i LOVE it!

    hooked from the very beginning! XD

    must agree with you that the fighting scene the best that i have ever seen. It made me really want to work even harder in kendo than i already am!! XD

    and the art was just BEAUTIFUL!! i’m in love….<3

    THANK FOR THE POST!! REALLY GOOD FIRST CHOICE!! xd

    • Wait you do kendo!??!! :O That's impressive~ I'm glad there's another BRS lover out there ^^ And yes the art was simply AMAZING!!

      thank YOU for giving up your time to read and comment on it Yvoon

      • yvoonmanga says:

        wait…you didn't know!!

        we had like this whole convo on Meta, guess u missed it

        i'm currently 3 levels from the bottom :P

        sigh….but school is preventing from advancing faster. i'm only going once a week now *cry*

        i will comment ANYTIME on your posts. how could i not! *SHOCK* =D
        My recent post WordPress Takes SXSW

  • tho i have to kinda admit…it confused me quite a bit…i hope they will make a second one to develop it more. :)

    • It did confuse me as well after the first time until I watched it the 3rd time I understood more of the concept behind it, I think I've said everything that I know in the End Thoughts but if there's any questions anyone want to ask then ask away! I'll try and answer them ^^
      My recent post Eyeshield 21 Bonus- Murata’s Oneshots

  • Did you just quote Green Day? That made my fucking day, best post ever just for that. :p

    What i found stood out and i agree with what you said, the animation, that and Hanazawa Kana who is one of my favorite Japanese voice actors.

    I really wish it was a TV series so we get a better development over time but for an OAV its definitely one of my favorite OAVs

    • hoho~ First comment :cookie ^^

      Yeah I quoted Green Day XD LOLS

      The animation was one of and probably the only strong point of BRS if you were to ask a whole audience but yeah, Hanazawa Kana has a really good voice and she deserves to be famous for her skills but personally, Hikasa Yoko's my top 1 ;D

      The reason why I said there's no hard facts is because on Culture Japan, Danny Choo had a talk with the head of Good Smile Company and basically, I quote “we will look into a continuation of Black Rock Shooter in the future” so we MIGHT be getting a series or another OVA, either way, I want BRS to continue, they need to improve some loose ends and really get the global consumers back but personally I think it was GREAT!!

      • Updated*

        I believe the continuation of BRS was the new 4-koma manga that recently came out (not translated yet) ^^

  • This was based on a song i believe so im not sure how much source material they have to base it on, they would need decent writers to make it work. I just wish the blu ray wasn't so expensive.

    • True, it was at first based on a song then a guy came along and added some characters then from that it appealed the gobal audience to move forward with an OVA, They might side track away from the song since it's just a song, you can't exactly get much from a song and add in some of there own parts to it to make it more exciting and etc… I'd get the blu-ray but I don't have a blu-ray dvd player XD

  • Vivi says:

    ^Yep, it's based on a song!

    Here's a summary of B★RS history for those who haven't heard/witnessed her origin story and don't feel like googling it lol

    VOCALOID is a singing-synthesizer program which most people are familiar with (Miku being the most popular/recognizable, but Len&Rin are my favorites ♥). You can create songs using different editions (featuring different characters). Many composers tend to team up with artists – or are double-threats – to create amazing music videos, usually starring the character of that edition of Vocaloid. The cool thing is that these people are just die-hard fans, although some have professional experience.

    Huke is a fairly popular artist who created a character named Black★Rock Shooter, unrelated to Vocaloid. Ryo of Supercell was inspired by his design, so he created the song Black★Rock Shooter using Hatsune Miku, then Huke created the images to make the PV.

    Anyway, great review Tofu! It's nice to see a good rating for it, most of what I have seen were much much lower.

    • wow…..that was the history behind it?

      i thought the song was the original and then they made an OAV because the song was so popular or something….yeh…shows my ignorance….and my laziness to check it up. :P

      thnx for the info!! :D

    • You JUST bet me to it Vivi xD My favourite will have to be Luka~ <3

      And thanks! I was originally gonna give it a 9.5 out of 10 but considering everyones opinion on it, I had to lover it a bit so it seemed not so biased xD

  • I agree, the animation for BRS is just gorgeous. And any character voiced by Hanazawa Kana is automatically awesome <3
    I reeeeaaaaally hope they continue with it!

    Also, awesome first post!! Green Day in your captions=WIN.

    • Thanks Elyon~! I'm looking forward to your first post as well! xD Knock em dead!

      There's a big change that they will continue it ^^ But it's not hard facts

  • Fuu says:

    Awesome anime. yea sure.

  • MkMiku says:

    While the art was aesthetically pleasing, I feel that they could've done much more with the story. And BRS only says her name at the end? Really? I love my waifu, but this OVA was a letdown for me. At least Mato was cute. I hope this isn't the last we see of her.
    My recent post The Many Faces of Black Rock Shooter

    • It is true they could have improved the story but as I'm a very soft towards anime I usually don't care as much. And yeah, Black Rock Shooter doesn't exactly talk till the end xD Mato was KAWAII~~~ And being voiced by Hanazawa Kana is an awesome PLUS!

      There's news going around about Good Smile Company working on a continuation of Black Rock Shooter, so hopefully if they do make it, it will be improved and better than this OVA ^^
      My recent post Houkago no Pleiades ONA

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