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#1

The first episode of FLAG came out subbed yesterday by Shinsen Subs. Finally one more of the slow-to-be-subbed summer season series gets subbed. This was one of the more anticipated ones when countless previews were being put up by blogs other than mine. Me, I just thought that it would be just a glorified version of Capture The Flag. Which it is, but as I learnt, it doesn’t mean that the anime has to be bad.

#2

Art style and direction are rather unique. All scenes are shown either through the lens of a camera/camcorder or through still photos. And the production company is willing to take the risks; I’d say that at least 50% of the entire episode was made up of still shots. And guess what, it’s being produced by Sunrise. Yes that Sunrise. And yes, there is mecha, but not bad mecha, this is believable mecha. Mecha that could actually exist, if the UN ever decided to go that way. CG is just mouth-wateringly good; if I didn’t know better I’d actually mistake some of the mecha CG to be actual filmed footage of some sort. Even the still snapshots they showed could very well be mistaken for actually photos — they’re that good. Sunrise sure is pulling out all the stops on this one.

#3

Character design is great as well, nothing really worth mentioning about it though. Proportions seem to be alright and faces aren’t horribly disfigured, so I’m happy enough.

#4

Music, well, it’s unique. It has this whole old Oriental vibe going with it. Which is understandable considering that the story does seem to take place in a fictional country somewhere in Asia. It’s actually pretty noticeable at times and doesn’t fade into the background and elicit no comment as is the case in many anime. It’s good enough to make me consider picking up the soundtrack when (if?) it is released. I rather like the ED as well (“Lights” by Eri Nobuchika), again something I’d consider picking up sometime.

#5

The series also has a great story going with it, even if it is a huge literal Capture The Flag. It’s almost like watching some sort of documentary — don’t let that comment put you off watching this, it’s not a bad thing, I promise. The fact that episode switches from moving to still images really creates a sense of purpose around the episode, gives it a real pace. Watch the episode to actually find out about the story; I’d rather not spoil it. I must mention this, it has one of the best episode previews I’ve seen in a while, and I’m really looking forward to the next episode.

#6

This is a must pick-up. Get it now.

#7

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