KANTAI COLLECTION #1 -- Special Review

Topic started by No_name_here on Aug. 27, 2010. Last post by zaldar 1 week ago.
Post by No_name_here (856 posts) See mini bio Level 11
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We're sampling all the new pilots this Winter. Check out our thoughts on...

Before I begin my review of Kantai Collection, I should probably confess something in the interest of full disclosure. As most of you reading this probably know, “Kantai Collection” the anime is based on the wildly popular “Kantai Collection” computer game which came out in 2013. I’m told by friends that playing the game before watching the anime allows one to notice and appreciate several fun nods and references that those who have not played the game will miss.

I myself have not played the game. So this review will be based purely on the experience I had watching the anime. Those of you reading this can therefore either view my evaluation of Kantai Collection the anime as pure and unbiased by outside influences, or ill-informed and irrelevant, and accept or dismiss it accordingly.

The underlying premise of Kantai Collection is that the oceans of the world have fallen under the control of the “Deep Sea Fleet.” Massive, highly-advanced, demonic looking warships that have the power to annihilate and sink nearly any vessel that dares to challenge them on the open sea.

The only force that can stand up to the Deep Sea Fleet? The “Kanmusu.” A group of…I’m not even sure how to really describe them…cute Japanese schoolgirls who are also (somehow) World War II Japanese battleships? Or they (somehow) carry the spirits of Japanese Battleships inside them, which gives them the power of Japanese battleships? I’m not entirely sure how it works. All I know is that when danger rears its head, these girls go into their cosplay routine, dress up as battleships, water-ski out onto the ocean, fire on the deep sea fleet with tiny handheld weapons which (somehow) magically transform into real life-sized fighter planes, (plus bullets, bombs and torpedoes), and before you can say, “You sunk my battleship” the weapons slam into the deep sea fleet with the full force of actual real live ordinance, destroying the enemy ships and earning victory for our heroines.

As strange as it may sound, absolutely none of that premise (bizarre as it is) rubbed me the wrong way.

What did rub me the wrong way was when I thought to myself, “Wait a minute. If this story is supposed to take place sometime roughly around the World War II period, and these girls are supposed to represent Japanese battleships, then who are the enemies they’re fighting and destroying supposed to represent?” After tossing and turning the idea in my head, I couldn’t escape the suspicion (I have no proof mind you, it’s just a suspicion) that the evil demonic “Deep Sea Fleet” is supposed to represent…The Allies. America, England, et al.

So essentially, if my suspicion is right, what we have here with Kantai Collection is a show that wistfully delivers the message, “Hurray for the Japanese naval fleet, destroying the Allies and helping the Axis powers win World War II, which is what could’ve/should’ve/would’ve happened in a better version of history.” (Or at least, “better” from the author’s perspective.)

Again, I have no proof that this is the message the author was trying to deliver. And it’s entirely possible I’m just reading into things here. But if I’m correct then…as someone who generally supports the Allies and not the Axis powers in World War II, I’m gonna have a hard time watching and supporting this show.

BUT, all that being said, the art and animation were very nice. The protagonist seemed very sweet and adorable. And it looks like in-between battle sequences, this show will feature a warm and heartfelt story about girls meeting each other, forming bonds of friendship and learning to work together to defeat a common foe. So…y’know...if you don’t mind the Pro-Axis-Powers message, this show might be the anime for you.

(Special thanks to Hyper-User Takashichea for the screencaps)

Kaita Mpambara works every day to try and create shows, stories, and characters that are as exciting, energizing, and entertaining as the very best works that have been given to the world by both the western and eastern animation industries. Keep up with his musings on life, the universe and everything by following him on Facebook.

Post by metalsnakezero (690 posts) See mini bio Level 16

I think you're getting the wrong idea that this show is supporting Japan's past allies and if you read their point of view (American school tend to only read into the American part) Japan didn't support the ideas of Nazis and only worked with them since they were against everyone else. When Japanese studios are doing references to WW2 era in shows they're only using what is cool and they never support the evils of that war. You should see how comical they make Hitler look and act, and when you see tcharacters wear German outfits it because they like the designs not because they support the ideals. Maybe the “Deep Sea Fleet” are American but 1) only American because we're the ones to fought against Japan, 2) We weren't that good to the Japanese as near the end we dropped 2 atomic bombs on them.

That said the only problem I have with the show is that it lacks proper world building unlike how another Mech girl series Strike Witches does their. KanColle kinda push us out of the gate with the premise while Strike Witches, despite the large amounts of fan service, took it time with how their magic works and reasoning behind young girls fighting a unknown evil. It a pretty nice shows to watch and if your a fan of the mech girl series it something to check out.

Post by Kino88 (259 posts) See mini bio Level 7
Well it's not Aprill so I'm inclined to believe this a show That actually exist,
Post by takashichea (15,230 posts) See mini bio Level 25
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This show is niche for folks who loved Moe girls. I thought I dropped the show since it wasn't like Arpeggio. It was boring and slice of life until episode 3 which finally caught my attention.

It's not a show for everyone.

Post by Wraith (382 posts) See mini bio Level 17
The show pretty much panders to the people who have played the game. Time wise, I believe this takes place after World War 2 since these girls contain the souls of ships that were sunk during that period. As for the Abysalls, there are fan theories that suggest that they are just stand ins for the souls of Allied ships
Post by Destinyheroknight (10,441 posts) See mini bio Level 21

Hmm, I have a feeling this Anime will become grimdark in the end, if it follow the ships real history.

Anyway, I don't think it a Pro-Axis-Powers message, it more of being proud of the ships instead of the war.

Post by YotaruVegeta (628 posts) See mini bio Level 12

I think that, if they could get away with it, the enemies would be represented by a country, or countries.

I didn't like this because I simply am not enamored by the personification and moeification of non-cute things.

@metalsnakezero: If you are an ally of a country in a war, are you not supporting them to win? Had the Axis powers won, what do you think would have happened? Right now, in our generation, all that stuff is just for history books and museums, but let's just stick to facts: if you support a country during a war and don't condemn their actions, you are supporting their actions. It's simple.

Post by zaldar (1,317 posts) See mini bio Level 15

@metalsnakezero:Supporting the actions of Japan during WWII and not supporting the people they were allied with is not possible. If you support one, you support the other. Reference Tom's many discussions of Hetalia and its evils which I hereby incorporate by reference and fully agree with. As for us dropping atomic bombs on them, well they did attack us first and it did prevent massive loss of American life by preventing an invasion of Japan being necessary, which as someone who supports America during world war II is the only measure I care about. In a war you can not judge the enemies life as equal to your own and expect to win.

Kaitia - due to the closeness of your name and the name of this anime I thought this article was about all the anime you have reviewed and people asking you to review one you liked ... as most of your reviews you ended up not liking the show (Idolmaster being the only exception I think) let me be the first to say I enjoy your snark, so keep reviewing ones you dislike to!

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