Giant Beasts of Ars
by Grant Jones,
How would you rate episode 11 of
Giant Beasts of Ars ?
Community score: 3.5
This week's Giant Beasts of Ars episode was certainly an improvement over last week, yet I can't help but think there is still a lot more wasted potential with this series.
The Securian village presents more interesting plot points and emotional beats. This is essentially a techno-magical take on fantasy elves, as the Securians have long pointy ears and extended lifespans. They also have a low birth rate which is often a trope for elves (at least in comparison to other fantasy groups). They have such a low birth rate in fact that they only have one or a handful of children every year as a community, which is obviously far too low to sustain. Enter the added twist of the giant techno-magical incubation chambers which allow them to nurture other new lives to help maintain their population.
It all comes off rather sweet with a touch of melancholy and works quite well. Despite the somewhat somber mood of the village and the very sterile environs underground, there was a kind-heartedness to everything that make this all rather poignant. You've got children playing, the Securians talking about how they strive to be better parents because they have so few children, and them even going so far as to say that Kumi is one of their own. It was all very wholesome and really upped the ante for when the eventual beast attacks happened later. I also like that it gave an explanation of where the technology for the experimental base came from, which was a nice touch.
The only head-scratcher for me is Kumi's age. I guess I misunderstood what her age was actually supposed to be. I know she is younger and obviously not as experienced with the world given that she was raised in an evil laboratory. But I sort of got the sense that she was vaguely a teenager, though this episode (both in dialogue and in her actions) frames her as being far younger and more childlike. Maybe I'm misremembering something or I did not notice key dialogue along the way, but it was a bit jarring to see her framed as an almost elementary-aged child rather than a vaguely young and inexperienced person.
Oh, another big positive this week - the monster design! Finally, a giant beast that looks like a vicious creature you want the hero to defeat. This big spiky worm thing might not win any awards in the originality department but it is a distinct monstrous creature and not just an elephant with red eyes or whatever. Progress!
Grant is the cohost on the Blade Licking Thieves podcast and Super Senpai Podcast.
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