Anime Review – Darker than Black: Ryuusei No Gemini

Anime

Somehow the high expectations I had awaiting the sequel to a fantastic series were not fulfilled. Ryuusei No Gemini isn’t exactly a sequel to the 1st season, but more like a separate arc in itself. It would be unfair to compare both of them as they vary in their style and storyline. For starters, the series are not bi-episodic; instead revolves around a single storyline involving a Eurasian female protagonist. Hei’s involvement through the series although significant, has not really been up to what it ought to be.

Storyline: 7.5/10

Suou Pavlichenko is a 13 year Eurasian girl whose life suddenly changes on a fateful day when she meets up with Hei. Involved in the mess of politics and war between the contractors, she seeks out on her own quest to find her missing twin, Shion. Alongside her is Hei, a drunk bastard who completely lacks the mannerism and suaveness he once had. The personality change might have been necessary in this series as it made things a bit interesting, but it didn’t seem all that good seeing him like that. The storyline in its individuality served to be interesting though. The protagonist goes through a lot of ordeals throughout her journey. The series also has some graphic and violent killings which made it a little gory at times. The series showed the birth and evolution of the contractors; something we had vaguely seen in the 1st season. The involvement of many agencies like CIA, FSB, MI6 and Section 3 was quite interesting. However, it could have made for better viewing had they had given more air time to show their involvement completely. They left with quite a bit to be said and it felt as if these names were only included to attract attention without a proper motive behind it. Also, the “Syndicate” that pretty much ruled in Kuro no Keiyakusha was nowhere to be seen. This was a disappointment as the mysteriousness behind the organization and its motives, the men leading the organization, etc. suddenly disappeared. Altogether though, despite its shortcomings it did some justice to its plot. Seeing the protagonists’ whole journey from havoc to happiness was nice. As for the name “Gemini of the Meteor”, I don’t think it was so relevant as to be put in the title (lack of imagination, perhaps?).

Characterization: 7/10

Anime

Ryuusei No Gemini had a plethora of characters which made it an entertaining prospect to watch. Starting off with the protagonist, Suou, a determined and strong girl entwined between living a life as a human or a contractor. It was touching to see the ordeals she and her school friends went through. Much like a supporting character, July was an example of some nice character development. His relation with Suou was charming to watch. Hei’s laid-back sake drinking attitude failed to impress me the slightest. And that he was not able to showcase his powers during most of the series made it lamer for me. The agents of Section 3 were pretty good, namely Hizaki and Genma. Hizaki’s remuneration involved kissing someone after the usage of her power added to the humor. Madam Oreille was yet promising character shown but somehow failed to make much of an impact in the Anime. A lot of interesting characters I would say. But somehow they were cramped up in a short series and there was lack of proper character development which somehow failed them. They should have been given more time for their characters to be known properly rather than just through some cameo roles.

Art: 9/10

The original characters were already pretty awesome in how they were made. The new characters were also very nicely put out. From the Russians to the CIA to the Japanese characters, all looked very original. Also the new characters gave the storyline a refreshing experience. The fights were well-coordinated and typically good to watch. Hei’s new look was intriguing; Suou’s character was pretty nicely done too. The agents looked good and the background of the Anime from Russia to Tokyo was beautiful. The characters are all very nicely drawn and the animation stands out to be pretty good as well.

Sound: 7/10

Sound was another good element about Ryuusei No Gemini. The OP was a treat to the ears. I particularly liked it. The voices of the characters were also very good. Suou sounded very sweet when she used to shout “Tanya”. As there was a mixture of cultures, it’ll be interesting to see how these voices correlate in the dubs that will be out later on. The ED was average I would say. The best thing however would be the background score during the fights. The whole beat-box thing or whatever that was being played surely pepped up the interest to watch. I loved it.

Overall: 7.5/10

If one sees Ryuusei No Gemini without having any expectations after watching the 1st season, one will find that its not bad. Although not as epic as Kuro no Keiyakusha (1st season), Ryuusei No Gemini offers an entertaining experience with some interesting character portrayals. Combined with good artwork and sound, it is recommended for those who loved the 1st season. Just keep the comparisons away while watching. ^^

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2 thoughts on “Anime Review – Darker than Black: Ryuusei No Gemini

  1. Pretty neat review, though I’d always prefered the first season as the characters are very well traced with their respective properties (Powers), as well as with the plot and music. And most importantly to enjoy the entire DTB Saga, you should’ve added the OVA’s as well, the four OVA’s of S1 are important as they route the plot of both the seasons respectively.

    • Yep, I prefer the 1st season any day; I would probably give it an 8.5/10.

      As for the OVAs, they came out a whole year after Ryuusei No Gemini released. I already watched the 2nd season by then. Though I agree that it would probably have been better to have watched it. It would certainly explain how Yin ended up being where she was in the 2nd season. =P

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