Infinite Stratos – First Impressions

Ichika starts at his new school and meets up with a childhood friend.

Impressions:

I’ll say this series had a solid first episode and lived up to the kind of show that some would expect. It’s definitely going to have some harem vibes and will have some mecha action. The real positive was seeing the first part of the episode and the action there. The one thing lacking was any threat to the characters. Without something to use these units against it was just going to be a harem show with some duels every now and then. Whatever the group was fighting against that should give them the action needed to make it a good show.

Ichika looks to be a solid kind of harem lead. Obviously he’s the lone guy in a school full of girls and there is some pressure there. Add in the pressure of being the brother of such a famous pilot and he’s in for a tough time. Still while understandably embarrassed with seeing Houki in a bath towel he showed some strong traits. He stood up for himself when Cecilia was kind of badmouthing his country and actually put himself into that duel willingly. Sure he got flustered with the handicap conversation, but that’s more about the world situation than a weakness in character. It’s only first impressions, but he doesn’t seem to be the type to fail as a lead. If the start of the episode was any hint it seems he’ll be a strong fighter as well which will keep him from being completely overshadowed by the girls.

There are definitely some interesting girls though certainly plenty fall into their respective archetypes. We have Houki the childhood friend. A kind of tsundere who has some trouble expressing her feelings and may be prone to attacking when flustered. Cecilia the foreign student and also the kind of person who is very confident about herself. Also have the abusive and stern older sister. Will take time to get a feel for some of the other characters who appeared in that preview scene at the start of the episode.

Only so much one can say from the first episode. It should be kind of interesting if they push the gender dynamic more in the series. Certainly we haven’t seen a guy (outside of slide-shows) other than the male lead. But also curious to see how the new reality will affect how the other female students treat Ichika. Got a taste of that with the laughing at the idea of him giving a handicap to a girl.

We’ve only seen a bit of the mech types used for the series. The OP and the first few minutes let us see what kind of world we’re going into. It’s interesting to see a more open style with the pilots more visible and wearing the units more like armor than a gundam type. Certainly more of a Strike Witches/Sky Girls kind of feel. A good variety of weapons from long range guns to swords. Looking forward to seeing them in action.

This looks to be a solid series if they don’t just focus mostly on the harem side of it.

OP Impressions:

I liked the OP from first impressions. It has a good active tone to it which lets you get excited about the episode that you’re about to watch. It sounds good which will make it easy to continue watching through the series. It did a good job showing the main characters and their respective units. Also it did show how the series will have a major threat for the characters to match up against.

ED Impressions:

The ED was also pretty energetic when it came to the music. It wasn’t very complex when it came to visuals that’s for sure. The whole time it just showed Ichika and Houki running in place. In that respect it’s hitting home what the main pairing of the series is going to be. A fun song to listen to though just watching the characters run isn’t that interesting.

2 thoughts on “Infinite Stratos – First Impressions”

  1. I actually think its a pretty decent series as well. I heard stuff from around the web saying this was pretty unoriginal, and I do kind of agree.

    There’s the whole Ichiban vibe to the show, except this time instead of being a demon lord, the main character’s the only guy who can pilot a mech armor suit. At the same time this kind of reminds me of Linebarrels of Iron as well.

    Then that blond chick is the classic: “I’m an english refined ojou-sama that’s super arrogant”. I’m glad he takes her on in the first battle of the series.

    Then of course, the whole gender mecha thing reminds me of Vandread.

    My interest in this series will largely depend on how strong the main character is. IF he turns out to be the strongest like in Vandread, I’ll be quite interested in this series. If he’s just a weak guy who’s surrounded by girls just because he’s thee only guy who can pilot a mech suit…. Well lets just say exit stage right for me XD

    Either way, good review man! Glad you’ll be blogging this series!

  2. @Setsuken
    You are right that this series really does remind you of various shows. Certainly not unusual for a series to have aspects that have been covered numerous times, but I hadn’t thought about some of the similarities until you mentioned them.

    Think the balance will be making the lead strong enough to not be completely overshadowed, but not so powerful that the girls aren’t useful. At least the first part of the episode comforted me there. Sure they appear to be using him to deliver the finishing blow, but it looked like a full team effort. Might be crazy, but I like all the characters in the group to be useful. After Hyakka Ryouran can agree that a useless male that’s just there for harem vibes wouldn’t be that interesting to watch.

    Guess we’ll see what the show turns into once the “enemy” is officially revealed. Thanks for the comment and glad you liked the review.

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