First Look: Libra of Nil Admirari

Alternative title(s): Nil Admirairi no Tenbin, The Scales of Nil Admirari
Game Adaptation by Zero-G
Streaming on Crunchyroll

Premise

In order to help her family, Tsugumi has agreed to marry a man of her father’s choosing whom she has never met. However, before this can happen, Tsugumi’s younger brother tries to commit suicide. The reason: he had in his possession a cursed book that has a strong emotional effect on whoever reads it. Tsugumi is then introduced to the Imperial Library Intelligence Asset Management Bureau, otherwise known as Fukurou, whose job it is to hunt down such cursed tomes.

Artemis’ verdict: Burning Me Up

It’s all too easy to tell that this is based on an otome game. Incidentally, I only looked up the source after watching this first episode, but if it turned out that Nil Admirairi hadn’t been based on an otome game, I would have been genuinely shocked. This fact wouldn’t be so bad if only the show weren’t so laughably dramatic at all times – I’m not inherently against a generous dose of manservice (no matter how unsubtle) just to help balance the anime industry out a little.

However, said manservice is far from enough to keep me invested in a series if the writing is all over the place, if the characters are one-note, or if the visual presentation is completely left by the wayside. All are true for Nil Admirari to a greater or lesser extent, but the color palette and animation in particular look so cheap as to be a copy-paste job at times, and the melodrama is taken to such heights that many scenes came across as almost parody-like in spite of how serious the anime seems to want to be. This of course makes the OP even more baffling by contrast, but hey, I’m sure at least some fangirls out there are celebrating, and I have to assume that’s Nil Admirari‘s sole focus.

Jel’s verdict: Hardly a Page Turner

​I’m starting to judge these otome game shows entirely by their protagonist since all the contrived plotlines and pretty boy harems are virtually interchangeable. Typically we see one of three types: There’s the quiet, subservient types meant to be pulled around by the arm (and possibly abused) by the male cast. Then there’s the rarer confident, independent type that isn’t putting up with their nonsense. And finally we have the most boring option, the blank slate with nearly no personality that the audience is meant to live vicariously through.

With option #1 I’d at least be mad and have something to write about. With option #2, I might actually enjoy the show. Unfortunately our main character here is leaning toward option #3. With her generic pleasant looks and personality, I coudn’t pick her out of a lineup with, for example, the girl from Code:Realize. At least she got to melt people with her skin, this girl just gets to see if a book has magic fire on it. So basically that is my roundabout way of saying there is nothing new or exciting here. Unless you completely love this type of show and need to keep up with every single one that comes out, I don’t think there’s much point to watching this.

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