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Soul Link

I would like to start off by saying that this anime looked incredible. After watching it however I found this anime falling quite short of my original thoughts. Instead of being on par with a great anime I found it in the category of “Generic Anime” which is one that has little to no originality. After watching the first episode and finding really nothing to make me want to watch the second other then my own personal boredom I realized this show would most likely(for lack of a better word) suck. After viewing the second i felt much the same after the first episode, still little to no plot development until the end of the episode. This pattern followed throughout the anime, with an over all predictable plot, generic characters, low quality animation, and poor choice of voice actors.

You sense the cheap atmosphere of the show early on. A group of youngsters gather on a spacestation to receive various kinds of training, but shortly after their arrival a group of terrorists attack. This is where the endless chain of “flaws” start, it’s like a very cheap action b-movie, lots of things simply don’t add up. Let’s just take the initial terrorist attack as an example. I have no idea why they would let almost the ENTIRE population of the space-station flee before their attack, the terrorists seemed pretty determined to get alot of prisoners afterall. Or rather, let me rephrase: I have no idea how on earth there is time to evacuate the entire space station while the terrorist spaceship is closing in. I wasn’t too impressed by “Infinite Ryvius” but at least it had style, coherant story and somewhat realistic reactions from the characters, which is obviously not the case in Soul Link. After a couple of episodes the “direness”-feel of the situation fades away making room for the wannabe-drama and ecchi. There is a small twist to the story along the way, but the nature of the show never changes, so it matters little overall. I didn’t get out of my chair, at least.

I could go on for hours here, the anime falls flat on it’s face bacause of the characters. We have the bunch of super-generic characters, everyone wants to save the rest. You can guess it gets messy when the first person wants to change their situation, the 2nd person wants to protect former and so forth. This creates a wave of unintentionally funny situations. For example most of the girls want to resolve the situation on their own throughout the show. At one point, the “leader” guy prevents one of the girls from doing so. He has alot of sound arguments for not allowing her to go. Afterall what can she do on her own? Right?! This is however totally rediculed by what happens next: Another girl walks by, heads out on her own and her actions are totally approved by the leader.

There are also other inconsistencies, alot of them. For example the timelime. From the moment the terrorists attack until the situation is resolved, how long time passes by? 1-2 days? I’m not sure but it’s not a very long time, things happen quickly. Towards the end the characters start thinking back on their time. “I’ve been talking to that person alot”, “we’ve been through thick and thin”. Hard to give concrete examples but you get the feeling they’ve been together for months, like “uninhabited planet survive”.
Wow, these people bond rather quickly!

There are alot of overdramatized situations. At one point the siblings have a fight, and for some reason one of the other girls TOTALLY overreacts. These cheap and obvious events try to win over the viewers, it didn’t work for me. It had the opposite effect, if any.

Also, make sure to pay attention to Nanami ( as if you couldn’t), she’s the unintentional comedic peak of the show. She’s the super-generic innocent cutie. Rather, replace innocent with born-yesterday. You know, even though our group is in a dire situation, there is plenty of time to tell this girl about the secrets of life. What is life? What is love? What is happiness? These basic questions need answers and the entire crew is happy to pitch in their deep and philosophic answers. She also gets the bee and flower story for good measurements sake. Very educational, I suddenly found myself sitting on the schoolbench in the 1st grade. This reminded me again a bit of american b-movies where dramas often have the child asking “perfect” questions. Why is daddy not coming home tonight? Why was daddy holding hands with that other lady?

Now that I’d love to say something redeeming about “wasted potential” at this point. but alas, I can’t. Since SoulLink takes any initial potential it might have had, puts it under the saddle, and then merrily rides the horse of mediocrity from here to the demiplane of Limbo and back… until that potential has turned into some gooey brown matter, not entirely unlike what you might find way back in your fridge after a two-months holiday.

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