“Ten years ago, humanity was infected by Gastrea, the parasitic life form that spread like an explosion, and we were nearly exterminated. On the brink of extinction, humanity surrounded itself with giant Monoliths made from Varanium, a metal the Gastrea hated, and managed to survive by staying within these barriers. Ten years have passed. After much trial and error, humanity is gradually arming itself with ways to fight Gastrea. At the core of that are Enju and other chosen Cursed Children, the Initiators.” Thank you, exposition, for doing my job for me.
Yes, Black Bullet is that kind of show, the kind where, in the not so distant future, humanity has met its own mysterious predator, and the only method of fighting back is through equally mysterious little girls, in this case know as “Cursed Children”. A Cursed Child is created when a Gastrea (big yellow spider monster) infects a pregnant woman, thus tainting the developing embryo with the traits of the Gastrea (specifically abnormally rapid regeneration and super human strength). And for some reason it’s always little girls; maybe it has to do with the gender and prenatal biological development or something.
Our protagonist this time around, Rentaro Satomi, is what’s called a Promoter (and also a high school student, because this is still an anime after all), a member of Tendo Civil Security who manages and takes care of the aforementioned Cursed Child Enju. His parents died when he was young, so he and Enju now live and work together, their partnership being focused taking down Gastrea. Well, at least that’s what Rentaro cares about, but Enju’s got something else in mind.
She refers to herself as Rentaro’s fiance and it’s pretty clear she wants official clearance and access to enter Base 3.0; that is, she wants into his pants. If you’re jealous of Rentaro right about now, I should point out that Enju can’t be more than ten years old. If you’re still jealous… eww.
While Rantaro is against this, treat his relation to her as more of caregiver (except when he throws her off his motorbike), he does want someone else in his pants, his boss, Kisara Tendo, who didn’t get much screen time in this first episode, so I’ll just say she seems like a longtime friend of Rentaro, and a decent CEO despite being impatient.
With the love triangle out of the way, lets move on to the actual story. Rentaro arrives at a crime scene without Enju (because the whole, throwing her off his bike thing), which turns out to be stupid of him because he soon gets beat up by a masked villain who spends that fight scene talking on his cellphone. Though he does managed to land one good kick on the guy, spinning his head around and confirming that he’s not human and also really really creepy.
With me effectively not able to finish lunch, the guy escapes and we move on to a scene that hurts my appetite more. Enju has found an infected man, on his last legs before he grows six more and starts killing people. Apparently this is from the Gastrea virus in affect. The man becomes a giant spider (not something I handle well) and starts attack Enju. I’m not sure why she didn’t just put him out of his suffering when he was harmless, but whatever, it’s not like this Gastrea presents much of a problem. Rentaro shows up and shoots it what special Black Bullets, which I assume are made of that Varanium stuff, then Enju kicks it into oblivion. And that’s pretty much the episode.
The animation is fine, though a bit boring. It’s smooth and on model, but that’s about it. Though I do always like experimental animation, I’d rather a show excel at doing what it should, than fail attempting what it shouldn’t. It’s fine. Same goes for the soundtrack.
Black Bullet is the first thing this season that I can really call disappointing, and that’s not at all meant to say it’s bad, in fact it could be really good. But it showed all it’s potential in the first ten minutes, and then the rest of the episode was just boring. If the action or even the intrigue of the world is made the focal point of the series, I’m on board. But the characters, high school, love triangle stuff persists, I won’t feel bad dropping this one.
Don’t Lose Your Way.