|Overall||Art||Animation||Character Design||Music||Series Story||Episode Story||Reviewer|
Slayers Evolution-R is a definite improvement over Revolution. Continuing where the last season left off, Lina and her group are in search of the Hellmaster's Jar. The first four episodes start off as some comical filler where the group is accompanied by an animated suit of armor called Nama, who ironically behaves almost like Naga the Serpent whom I've heard of from the Slayers OAVs and movies. The episodes with her contribute to better moments of comedy with Slayers, especially in an episode where she has Amelia stuck inside her creating some fun character chemistry between the two. Only filler episode I got bored with was the fourth one featuring another dull scenario with fish people.|
The fifth episode is where the main plot kicks in again where Lina's group learn more about the Hellmaster's Jar and have another encounter with dark ninja Zuuma from the last season. More light is shed on Zuuma's past as Lina's group find themselves manipulated by him and what they eventually learn about the Hellmaster's Jar not only builds up to a suspenseful little finale with a couple old foes from the first TV season, but it also sheds more depth on Zelgadis and Pokota thanks to the two having past connections with Rezo. You can even expect an appearance from Xellos towards the later half of the series.
The visuals to this season are about on par with Revolution, though I noticed some actual effort put into animation during points of the series such as the collateral damage of a kingdom from a demonstration of power from the final foe in this season and Zel and Amelia's battles with a pair of Mazoku in a battle later in the series. Still, I did come across moments of the franchise's usual shortcuts with animation.
Slayers Evolution-R was a big improvement from Revolution thanks to better comedy moments thanks to the appearance of Nama and the suspenseful buildup revolving around the plots with Zuuma and the Hellmaster's Jar. At this point, it looks like I still have all the movies and OAVs, plus the spinoff series Lost Universe to dive into for the Slayers franchise.
Last updated Monday, March 14 2011. Created Monday, March 14 2011.
While taking the 2nd-half of "Slayers Revolution" and turning it into a separate series may have been a marketing ploy on the part of the Japanese, I decided that I didn't mind this if the writers continued to attempt to shift the anime in line with how the novels are. So how did things go? Well, the alignment with the novels continued and there was one nice teaser, but in the end it was a mixed lot for me.|
The series starts with the Nama-chan arc, which provides two things. First, it shows how soul transfers can ultimately work. Second, it gave the writers a means of adding the character Naga to the series without adding the character Naga to the series. lol Naga is a character from the prequel novels (which are still ongoing) and has been animated in the various "Slayers' movies " and OVA's. She is also Amelia's long-lost sister. Hardcore Slayer's fans have longed for a reunion of these two sisters and so the writers gave it here by having a new character named "Nama-chan" who conveniently has no memories and who's soul conveniently occupies a suit of armor. Now we can have Lina go off on her old nemis (though without completely understanding why Nama-chan would annoy here so) and we can have Amelia and Naga meet, but without violating anything since they've never done so in the novels.
For those hardcore fans, this pseudo reunion is a fun treat, especially when Lina goes off or in episode three where Amelia finds herself trapped inside the suit of armor that is Nama-chan. From a non-fan perspective, the Nama-chan arc is mostly a complete waste of time as it does nothing to advance the main story plot. Some character development in episode 3 for Amelia is the one gem of this arc for non-fans and fans alike. However, the other four episodes in the arc will be nothing more than pointless filler for non-fans I'm afraid.
After the Nama-chan arc is over, we pick up the Zuuma thread left over from "Slayers Revolution." Here, the story gets interesting again as Zuuma is a credible threat to Lina and company as are the two mazoku that are introduced. The story basically follows the novel plot thread for Zuuma with a few changes that had to be done to make the story fit into the anime canon. The only negative here would be the distraction that is Ozel. More on that in a bit.
With episode 9, the plot finally begins to move forward and we see a nice flashback of Zelgadiss as a human and working with his old team from before he met Lina (whom were introduced anime-wise in the original "Slayers" series). That's another nice bone for hardcore fans and a nice taste of character development for Zelgadiss. Ozel continues to be somewhat of a distraction until Rezo comes back to life. After that it is "game on" as they say.
The highlight of this -- Xellos, hands down! Actually, Xellos comes off pretty well throughout the whole series, acting very much in character with his novel counterpart. Xellos is merely tailing Lina's party and is never a member of it. Xellos does not like disrespect but gives Lina a bit more leeway than most. Xellos is a mazoku with his own agenda. That's how it should be. I really liked seeing Xellos this way and kudos to the production team for making it so. Also, props to the production team for not only finding a way for Xellos to be shown in his actual body (which is cone-shaped), but for allowing him to cut loose during the fight with ghost Ruby Eye Shabranigdu.
Bottom line: For the hardcore "Slayers" fan, there's a lot to like in "Slayers Evolution-R" from the pseudo-Naga revival, an accurate portrayal of Zuuma, an accurate and excellent portrayal of Xellos, Ruby Eye Shabranigdu, and Giga Slave. For non-fans, there is a weakness in writing with too many bones tossed to hardcore fans so that casual viewers are either left in the dark or are bored to tears at times. So if you are a hardcore fan, this is easily a Buy. If you aren't, a mild Rent.
Last updated Friday, April 24 2009. Created Wednesday, January 28 2009.