First Look: Divine Gate


Director: Abe Noriyuki
Writer: Takahashi Natsuko
Music: Ozawa Takumi
Studio: Pierrot
Genre: Psychological, Seinen, Supernatural
Simulcast: Animax UK, AnimeLab, Crunchyroll, FUNimation, Hulu

The director, writer, and most of all the studio that animated Bleach tackles Winter 2016 with this stylish anime adaptation of Divine Gate. Aesthetically colour coded characters and an opening song that makes one tap their feet to the beat are advertised in the series’ PV, and so the question is, does the show deliver?

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The Divine Gate is something sought by people with wishes and desires. Aoto, a rumoured parent killer, saw the Divine Gate on that fateful night. Akane, a rebellious teenager, seeks it to see his father, who was lost in the Gate’s investigation, and experiments, again. Midori, a girl with an obsession of being number one, runs straight to the Gate to find the friend that bound her to a promise long ago. With Arthur and his Round Table members, they set off to storm the Divine Gate, and maybe have their wishes granted.

In all honesty, if there is anything I have a problem with, it’s the massive overuse of “emo” narrations and monologues. While it does try to sell some sort of individuality for the series, it rather comes off as “all style, no substance”. The actions of the characters sometimes go very over the top with their intended archetype; it isn’t appealing. An example of this is Aoto dropping blocks of ice into the newly boiled ramen simply because he can’t imagine eating warm food; it was too much and a try-hard to sell his character.

As it stands, it remains consistent in this sort of motion with characters in the first 3 episodes, so if the first three episodes appeal to you, then you should be able to enjoy the rest of the series.

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Episodes 1 to 3 can be viewed at Animax UK (UK), AnimeLab (AU/NZ), Crunchyroll (US), FUNimation (US), and Hulu (US). Do give it a look see and consider this stylish game adaptation.