Some short samples of `shounen' horror. What this means is that there's a decent helping of violent death, terror and rape but not a great deal of depth. The plot itself, as presented before the action starts, is equally simple. It seems that, even now, powerful and brutal ogres exist and like nothing better to kill people, eat people and father more ogre children on human women (despite being about 12+ feet high). It seems there are ogre women though, and they can have children, although if they're like the hero of this story you can see why they don't want to. That's because the hero, while being born of Ogre's, has a totally human appearance and was born with a famous ogre-slaying sword in his hand (how's that for a birth complication?). He's also decided that the only way he can live as a human is to make sure that no ogres survive, and thus he dedicates himself to racial genocide (safe in the knowledge that the brutal ogre's eminently deserve it).
I strongly suspect the manga had more depth...but that's not what i'm reviewing. In essence we get to see an episode of `magical bestial ogre' inflicting horror on someone, often with a twist to make it more interesting, before the `hero' arrives to end the episode. This has the side effect of making him pretty dull. He's no witty conversationalist, gets his name from his sword (Ogre Slayer) and has a pretty basic aim in life (Slay Ogres). Sure he's a `tough guy'...but he's not very interesting and he doesn't get that much screen time. Thus the story is carried by the normal people involved in the story. They don't get much time to be more than sketched in, but at least they're more interesting than the lead. This is further limited by needing to include all the things fans of the series, and purchasers of the OAV's, want. And given the audience some of this is suprisingly brutal (and, at least in some cases, quite unneccessary to the story). Certainly the first episode left me with some images I could have quite easily survived without. On the other hand if you took away this `yuck' element there'd be little left in this fairly flat and simple series.
Mind you, this isn't helped by it being a dub. It's not that bad, but it's of average quality and quite lifeless which does the series no favors. Then again the writing and animation are similar, competent and capable but remarkably unexciting. The visual style is clean and well colored (with some nice backgrounds out of the city) and the motion is simple but fairly smooth. However given that there's no real feeling of `threat' to ogre slayer himself (since he's `bad') it's not too involving. Character and environment design is definitely of the `archetypal' variety. The music didn't bring itself to my attention.