Watching Akame ga Kill! is relatively engaging. But there’s a dark side to this brightly coloured anime. Yes, it’s rather gory. But more notably, and less obviously, it will also make you a horrible person.
Why? [MILD SPOILER ALERT] Because death is trivialised and I promise you, as characters drop like flies before your eyes, you’ll be sitting there, crunching on your snack of choice, mumbling “knew it.” All the while feeling mildly proud for guessing the obvious. Well. That’s what I did anyway.
It’s almost like a messed-up version of Survivor, but instead of a person simply being simply voted out every episode a character brutally dies. Death in anime is many things. Sad, shocking, surprising. Maybe it makes you tear up. And for the most part this response is normal…it’s meant to pull at your heartstrings.
However in Akame ga Kill! death is the new norm. The surprise? Gone. The shock? Gone. The sadness… debatably gone. It’s the desensitisation of death in this anime in an almost formulaic way that really brings this series down. The overuse of death means they begin to hold little meaning, and their predictable nature makes them notably anticlimactic [END OF SPOILER].
This being said, this anime isn’t as bad as i’m making it out to be. But it is weird. You know so much is wrong with it but at the same time it’s still relatively enjoyable. Kind of like munching on a hot dog right after someone tells you exactly how they’re made (if you like eating hot dogs I suggest you do not look this up).
Back on track. The premise of Akame ga Kill! is a quest to overthrow a corrupted empire (*rolls eyes* yes, we’ve all seen this one before). How? By using imperial arms – a series of unique weapons or objects granting the user special powers. These serve as the foundation to give the scandalous empire rebellions strength while providing many of the fights a point of difference.
I’d be lying if I said the action scenes wasn’t good. The art is clean and the animation smooth. And this is hands down the saving grace of this anime. If the action was bad this series would be as fun to watch as a documentary about sand. Because lets be honest. The characters are, in most cases, so generic that even with desperate fanservice added into the mix I can promise you nothing will be leaving the pants.
Not much thought is given to differentiating the main cast from common anime archetypes. Our main character Tatsumi is both overly righteous and annoying. Akame is so quiet that it’s a constant mystery why this series was named after her and the rest of our rebellious squad seem a little two-dimensional. If they’d been fleshed out a little more then when disaster strikes maybe we would care a little more.
To give the basic rundown. Besides being needlessly savage, Akame ga Kill! does little to differentiate itself from other series. But while the plot and characters are sub-par, the art and animation (and hence all action scenes) are incredibly well done. Also as a disclaimer, it’s more enjoyable than I make it out to be in this review. If you like fast-paced fight scenes and a darker vibe then you’ll probably really enjoy this series.