B: The Beginning

Title:B: The Beginning
Keywords: , , , , , , ,
Notables: Animation - Production I.G.
In a world powered by advanced technology, crime and action unfold in the archipelagic nation of Cremona. Koku, the protagonist. Keith, the legendary investigator of the royal police force RIS. A mysterious criminal organization. A wide variety of characters race through the fortified city as it is beset by the serial killer, Killer B, and a chain of crimes.
(Summary Courtesy of Anime News Network)

12-episode ONA series that premiered on March 2, 2018.
Animated by Production IG.
See series sequel, B: The Beginning Succession.
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Buy 9 9 9 8 8 8 Ggultra2764 [series:3727#1552]
B: The Beginning is part crime mystery and part psychological thriller as police investigator Keith Flick and the members of the Royal Investigation Service (RIS) investigate a series of brutal murders that are seemingly connected to a serial killer going by the name of "Killer B". However as Keith further investigates the murders, he comes to realize there is a larger conspiracy at play as the murders are connected to secret government experiments to create superhumans.

B's mystery it delves into offers some engaging twists in its developments that help shape a good amount of the plot and character development found throughout the series. The twists in question are effective at creating convincing transitions of where the story is going, as each adds more layers to the mystery that Keith and the RIS are delving into. The mystery in question personally affects Keith due to his own tragic backstory that the anime later explores and things are gradually revealed about Killer B and his killing spree that has more going on beneath the surface. Without spoiling too much of it what it builds up to, the human element of the mystery explored offers some engaging psychological elements that affect what the main antagonist in question has been doing and adds more to the personal nature of Keith's involvement in the investigation. Beyond Keith and the antagonist, many of the other members of RIS don't have much to show as characters. However, Lily makes for a strong impression as she proactively tries to grill Keith at points about elements of the investigation that he is more privy to and Keith tries actively keeping distance from her due to being partly annoyed with her persistence, and also his personal issues from the serial killings affecting him. Otherwise, the human element of the mystery in question offers up the most engaging storytelling throughout B's run.

As far as the superhuman element of the series is concerned, the handling of it's a bit of a mixed bag. Killer B's connection to it adds some decent depth to him, though his motives are more straightforward for what you may find in many anime titles. There were rough spots in the storytelling at points as B often had a tough time trying to find a solid balance with focusing on both Keith and Killer B's stories connected to the main mystery. Other characters on the superhuman side are not too compelling to see either as they're pretty limited in depth, mostly being mooks or mindless psychopaths. Also, the series teases to more things to come with the superhuman element of the story with its final scene. Whether or not this improves the superhuman element of the series considering a second season is in the works will remain to be seen. However, the superhuman elements make up for the more visually pleasing part of B's presentation with its combat scenes between Killer B and enemy superhumans, offering fluid animation and intense fight choreography that make for engaging action sequences.

Overall, I would say I was engaged to B: The Beginning for the most part due to the exploration of the human element of its mystery. However, I got the sense this could have been a better series considering its superhuman element lacked the intricate and complex development offered from exploring Keith's involvement within the mystery. Still, those looking for an engaging crime mystery series with some psychological and supernatural elements may get some solid entertainment watching it via Netflix.

Last updated Thursday, July 25 2019. Created Thursday, July 25 2019.

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