GATE – Anime Review

Japanese Title: Gate: Jieitai Kanochi nite, Kaku Tatakaeri

 

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Watched in: Japanese & English

Genre: Fantasy Action Adventure

Length: 24 episodes

 

Positives:

  • An easy watch.

Negatives:

  • Why is this guy protagonist?
  • No fantasy world building.
  • Fantasy characters act too modern; present day characters are too calm.
  • Female iris designs.

(Request an anime for review here.)

First it was one person transported to a fantasy world; then it was a city; then a country; nowadays they just let anyone in.

A portal opens in Tokyo, connecting our world to one of fantasy and an army of warriors and all manner of creatures spills out onto the streets of Ginza. They slaughter anyone in sight. Worst of all, the invasion has cancelled the doujin convention, which Youji was so looking forward to – he is an otaku after all, as he told us in scene one. The modern military pushes back the fantasy horde and ventures through the portal soon after to understand the source of this calamity. Youji finds himself leading a recon team – not that he wants to, or anything, because he is an otaku above all else. They will have to negotiate peace and broker truces if they mean to survive their adventure of elves, dragons, knights, and catgirls. Most of all, everyone must remember that Youji is an otaku.

I forgot one detail: Youji wants me to tell you that his is an otaku. Don’t forget it.

This dimwit has to remind us every scene. He doesn’t stop. Considering an otaku wrote this, you’d imagine the one character he would depict correctly would be the otaku. Self-inserts are rarely good, however. Best part? Him being an otaku has no bearing on the story in the end. Come. On!

Like this hollow protagonist, GATE puts no thought into building its world, societies, monsters, and magic. The writer took the base template of ‘fantasy world’ and added nothing to it, resulting in a world no one would care to learn more about. Why would you when there are no secrets to uncover, cultures to learn, or dynamics to understand? All the fantasy characters act too modern as well. They may not know what a gun is, but their behaviours and morals don’t differ from ours.

On the opposing side, the modern people are far too sane about crossing a portal to a fantasy world. Do none of them realise what this truly means?

The first episode is a deception, leveraging the idea of all-out war between modern and fantasy societies, when in actuality, GATE is more comedy than action and the two sides are at peace most of the time. Again, the fantasy people are too modern, accepting the army with ease, and Youji learns their language in about two seconds (you thought a dozen races would have different languages, didn’t you?) A lack of action is no loss in this case with how little thought went into it. Prepare to put an equal amount of thought into GATE if you mean to enjoy it.

Basic, very basic, politics contribute the most to conflict with one king wanting to seize power, while a group in the Japanese government considers sealing access to the gate from other countries to secure the new world resources, resources that the fantasy residents are oblivious to.

The comedy is fairly good among the main group, which teams up with an elf, a mage, a death oracle, and more before long. A soldier with the catgirl fetish loses it when he meets one. If you can’t make meaningful tension, then amusing humour is better than nothing for a modicum of enjoyment.

Art – Medium

The art is your decent modern quality. Though why do most girls have lines across their irises? It makes them look full of tears.

Sound – Low

Voices are average in a weak script.

Story – Low

A portal connecting our world to one of fantasy initiates a new type of conflict. GATE would greatly benefit from world building and a different protagonist to engage the audience.

Overall Quality – Low

Recommendation: For bored fantasy fans only. GATE’s sole merit is its ease of consumption for anyone who doesn’t want to think about it. This is trash, but it might be your sort of trash.

(Request reviews here. Find out more about the rating system here.)

 

Awards: (hover over each award to see descriptions; click award for more recipients)

Positive: None

Negative: 

Hollow World BuildingHorrendous ActionRubbish Major Characters

7 thoughts on “GATE – Anime Review”

  1. I have to admit, this series caught my interest when it first came out
    It had a slightly different premise, which could have worked out had that been the central focus
    But no, as I followed this series, it turned into this:
    Let’s give the MC a harem, that and like you said, it’s kinda….boring
    Thanks, but no thanks : (

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I actually found Kono Suba pretty decent
        It focuses primarily on the comedy
        It’s definitely different from most of the other isekai out there

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Gate is one of those unfortunate anime’s in which it has a great premise but everything else in which the story is meant to stand on falls apart. The worst part is that it’s all caused by one issue, the story’s propaganda in regards to how “JSDF is the best!”. Because of the story unwillingness to show the army as anything other than perfect and OP, the story never has any real stakes for the human world. At no point do you feel that this new presence is an actual threat because the story establishes immediately that they aren’t as soon as they nuke and defeat the thousands of enemy soldiers with no consequences (implied they ha don casualties of there own). Worst part is that it makes no sense that a fantasy world with unique tools such as magic, OP dragons to mount and tame, and god like lollies (plus the author could have met with the medieval theme and created magic weapons and whatnot) is no real threat to the Japanese army (don’t even get me started about how a lightly armoured Japanese soldier can solo melee 5 heavily armoured trained guards (who should be trained in close combat since that’s what they relied on the most for combat). A lot of the characters are great and the display of both groups co existing (separate of the war of course) could have been a lot more interesting and fulfilling had there been a more fulfilling threat (most of the conflicts in the manga are interpersonal ones rather than a overarching plot that builds up to a climax for the war). This is one of the Japanese best anime movies of all time.

    Like

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