First Look: Tokyo ESP

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Alternative titles: X-Men
Manga Adaptation by Xebec
Streaming on Funimation

Premise

Esper terrorists capture parliament, leading the good espers to attempt to save the day.

Iro’s verdict: Disjointed

After watching the entire first episode, I still couldn’t tell you exactly what was going on. To the show’s credit, we’re thrown into the (rather gory) action quickly as the ostensible bad guys tear their way through government security, but we’re given little to no context for any of it. Nearly a dozen characters are introduced with pretty much no time devoted to explaining why we should care about any of them, and events that should be relatively dramatic are instead reduced to being utterly laughable. It feels almost like Yozakura Quartet did, only without the same sense of carefree fun, which was unfortunately the key ingredient in that show. Despite my professed love for urban fantasy, I’m probably going to pass on this one.

esp1swords

Life’s verdict: True Fanservice

Are you a Ga-Rei Zero fan? If you are then you are in a for a treat, if not you might want to hold judgement until next week because this first episode isn’t for you. I watched Ga-Rei Zero myself so I caught most of the cameos. It was hard to miss them as they took up half the episode. I like the kind of Xmen feel this show has going for it, but I’m worried it might exist purely to indulge fans of the manga like Ga-Rei Zero did for it’s own story. I am curious to see where we go next week, but I’m not getting a good feeling from this so far. Hopefully I’m wrong.

Zigg’s verdict: Extra Sensory Plot Perception

Tokyo ESP suffers from the same problem that a lot of modern anime has, in that it’s got some seemingly cool ideas but is so frantic to put them on screen that it forgets to do any sort of gradual build or development. The net result is an episode that’s loaded with cool imagery (teleporting assassin girl is a particular highlight) but spares almost no time to make things understandable or to give us a reason to care about what’s happening. We’re introduced to a succession of characters that we aren’t given a chance to learn anything about and some of the action scenes are so goofy (riding your bike in circles anyone?) it pretty much kills the dramatic mood they’re going for. Add the fact the only characters I was remotely interested in were two brief continuity cameos (hey Yomi & Kagura, you’re still hella generic) and this seems a difficult show to love, though there’s definitely some appeal there.

esp1gun

One thought on “First Look: Tokyo ESP

  1. cue X-men theme NANANANANANA NANANANANANNAANA

    lol first thing that popped into my head aside from Yomi and Kagura cameos

    I was already a fan of garei, but also been reading the manga of tokyo esp. that said dont know why they didnt start at the beginning but was interesting enough for me. just hope they dont rush things and go for 2 story arcs instead of just one.

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