Never have I hated an anime studio so much before. However, Studio Pierrot managed to gain my hate due to how poorly they managed to handle Black Clover. Which is why, I have to do a rant on Black Clover the anime instead of simply a post on why I dropped it at episode 3.
Take note of the emphasis on Black Clover the anime, it will come into play later.
So, what exactly is Black Clover and what is it about?
Black Clover is a battle shounen series that focuses on the main protagonist, Asta, and his rival, Yuno, and their journey to become the magic emperor.
The general story plot does not really matter here(and I will not discuss it just yet), because in its very essence Black Clover is a battle shounen with fights coming one after another.
So…what exactly went wrong with Black Clover the anime, and why does it require me to do a rant post on it?(As if everyone else have not done one/multiple already)
Quite simply put…everything.
Slight warning: minor spoilers ahead due to screencaps, but then again they didn’t adapt much in the first few episodes anyways so there really isn’t much to spoil.
When people ask for criticisms on Black Clover the anime, you would almost definitely hear one complaint that is always repeated over and over…quite like how Asta shouts in our ears over and over, demanding that all attention be onto him and just simply makes us want to cut our ears off.
This single complaint is quite easily summed up by this one compilation from the first episode alone:
Yes, Asta constantly earrapes us with his absolutely amazing battlecries directed at seemingly nobody in particular. I didn’t really mind it at first, because Asta’s character in general happens to be the annoying and obnoxious main character type, but as it went on… it gets worse and worse.
Take note that apparently after episode 3 onwards the screaming gets less and the voice acting becomes more moderated but holy shit how I just want to slap the shit out of Asta because of his screaming alone.
Now, if you people want to blame someone, please don’t blame the voice actor. As far as it looks like it definitely isn’t his fault for having to shout so much and scream in our ears all the time, it is the problem with the directing that made him have to do his job(which inadvertently also breaks our eardrums). And god do I have quite the complaint for the directing of this anime.
The godawful directing
Well done Studio Pierrot. You have managed to take a battle shounen series and turn it into… slice of life training arc?!
Seriously, what the heck are you people doing. We are here to watch Asta kick ass and Yuno wrecking shit, not the both of them enjoying boar meat on their long ass journey to the capital, nobody needs to see that.
This ungodly snail speed pace at which they are adapting the series is quite literally killing it. Let’s see. In 3 episodes they have managed to adapt… 1 chapter. A SINGLE CHAPTER IN 3 EPISODES. Well done.
Black Clover as a manga(not anime) was a series that has its pace set on hyper speed. We have a 6 month timeskip right at the beginning, and right after that we are plunged into fight after fight. It’s not a bad thing really, mind you, since we get to enjoy the action in full every single chapter, but it can tire people out. With the most recent chapters however, the mangaka has sped down quite a bit and we’ve gotten much-needed breaks from endless fighting and instead gotten interesting backstories and such.
HOWEVER, that does not mean you can take the series and straight up adapt it into snail pace from the get go. What was Studio Pierrot thinking?!
First, we have the very very annoying phrase of “Magic is everything”. OK WE GET IT YOU CAN STOP REPEATING IT EVERY EPISODE ALREADY GEEZ!
Second, we get way more glimpses at their training than we are supposed to.
(Insert generic training arc screencap here)
Third, we also happen to have Asta’s screaming dragging on for way longer than it’s supposed to be, and it ends up dragging the time even more.
And to top it off, we get the very helpful recaps at the start of each episode to help remind us what the show is all about:
“Magic is everything” “Asta likes to scream a lot”. These recaps last from anywhere from 1 minute to 3 minutes and are absolutely horrendous and does nothing but drag time.
Not to mention, we also get the same flashback over and over, reminding us constantly that Asta was hit on the head quite a bit as a child.
(and this might explain his tendency to shout really)
So really, this pacing is just horrible, and defies the very meaning of having a battle shounen series.
What’s that? At least they are still following the story you say?
Then what about the fillers?
Filled with enough fluff to make you puke
When we talk about fillers, it’s usually sections of the anime that strays from the original story and serves no purpose in the general direction of the story and only serves to drag time, which is precisely why they are called fillers.
In this case, why in the HECK do we have fillers already at episode 3???
We get an overly redundant training arc with Asta dreadfully counting from 996 to 1000, some random ass exposition from Asta and Yuno about how they really want to beat each other, and that really really bad travelling arc that nobody needed. There’s nothing wrong with trying to fill in the 6 months timeskip in the manga, sure, but can you make it anymore boring? I really don’t need more zoom ins of the magic emperor’s statue anymore for goodness’ sake…
And let’s talk about the point of the fillers. Normally, when an anime has fillers, it is to allow the manga to produce more material so the anime can continue running on without fear of running out of source material.
In the case of Black Clover, there has been a confirmation of a total of 51 episodes of the anime being animated. Why this weird number, I will never know, but assuming that they take the normal stance of adapting around 2-3 chapters per episode with 18 page chapters, we actually have more than enough source material. That’s right, there is currently 100+ chapters of Black Clover that has already been out and because Black Clover is on weekly shounen jump, we get one new chapter every week.
So, what I don’t understand here is WHAT IS THE POINT OF THE FILLERS?! You have more than enough resources to adapt for 51 episodes, AND some leftover if you don’t adapt too fast! Furthermore, each chapter(most of them) of Black Clover is almost filled to the brim with actual content, so you really don’t have to worry about having not enough content! So there really is no reason for this stupidity that is a complete filler episode for episode 3!! What are you waiting for? The source is almost light years ahead and yet you have the anime adapting a total of 1 chapter for 3 episodes, and as I’ve heard for 6 episodes, 4 chapters. I’m sure with basic mathematics everybody will be able to calculate out that that is actually lesser than 1 chapter per episode and this just goes to show how much the anime is lagging behind when it’s not supposed to.
So even though the snail pace is already making adaptation slow, they decided to add a filler episode.
And the problem doesn’t just end there. Nowadays, fillers can also serve as a small break from the main story with some side stories to entertain us still, as we can see from the filler episode of Boku no Hero Academia S2 with Froppy’s adventures and the hilarious recap episode from Re:Creators. And yet, Studio Pierrot decides to cook up this mess of a filler episode filled to the brim with trash and ask us to swallow it whole, because that is an actual episode in the anime. In the spirit of Gordon Ramsay, what the f*ck is this you are serving me?!
I’ve had my fill, no seconds
And with that, I simply couldn’t take it anymore and decided to abandon ship while I still can. I have very glamorously dropped Black Clover at episode 3, and even if future episodes get better (and they are getting better), I really don’t want to risk the chances of ruining the series for myself, so I’m ending the journey right here. I’m also afraid that if I watch any further I’ll start hearing Asta’s screams in my head when I read the manga too, and may very well ruin the manga for me.
With that, my ranting on Black Clover the anime ends. So, was Black Clover bad…?
The series as a whole is very much good, and it’s simply the anime that is being a pile of trash. The manga is currently entertaining me quite a bit and I don’t plan to stop reading it either. Therefore, conclusion for Black Clover as a series: 8/10.
Conclusion for Black Clover the anime? 1/10. Distasteful and simply leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
And finally, conclusion for Studio Pierrot? I sentence them to execution by tickling. They have managed to ruin Tokyo Ghoul and now Black Clover, and with the despairing of them obtaining the rights to animate Tokyo Ghoul:re too, I found myself hating on this studio as a whole. Please don’t touch the series I enjoy, thank you.
-A very displeased Plyasm