The Third: REVIEW

Ahhh I just finished watching The Third – Aoi Hitomi no Shoujo (The Girl With the Blue Eye). I’m kind of angry though, because I watched this on DVD from Netflix, and the stupid disc was scratched right where the end was. I was like, aw, it’s ending… and then at literally 22:30 out of 24:00 minutes, it started being all jerky. God. But it didn’t really ruin the ending since it wasn’t really a breathtaking one anyways.

The Third

PLOT

One of my major problems with The Third was the lack of a strong story to link all the episodes together. This show was based on a series of novels and short stories, and it really showed. It’s kind of like when you write an essay and you have all these amazing paragraphs but then when you try to transition from one to the next you end up scratching your head and then procrastinating. The Twelve Kingdoms was also like this a little bit, but it worked better for me since the setting was so amazingly detailed and thought-out. Also, each new arc would have a little bit of a different point of view. This changed things up a bit. But then, the Twelve Kingdoms also had 45 episodes in which to develop plots and characters (And it deserves more. Hint, hint.)

Individually, most of the arcs were quite interesting. However, I usually ended up wanting a more full understanding of what was going on, with more detail and such. Perhaps this is what happens when you try to be episodic and plot driven at the same time?

  • Setting: I’m repeating myself if you’ve read some of my other posts, but just for the record: I love post-apocolyptic type settings. So no problems here. While the setting was intriguing, it was maybe TOO intriguing. I wanted to know more! I was expecting to have a more developed and detailed setting by the end of the show. But I guess they decided to pull the “throw you into another world and expect you to cope” stunt. Which can be fun too.
  • The Third: I want to know more about them, too… are they a race that developed on earth, or are they descended from aliens…?

CHARACTERS

Honoka was a good main character. She was too strong… also, she kind of had a “Jack of all Characters” syndrome. Ha. Okay, that was really stupid. But her character was just way too “amazing” at times. I actually thought Iks was a bit of a weak character, especially opposite Honoka. He’s not even in a lot of the episodes, and yet he seems like he should be all important. I think I’m just griping here, though. I liked Paife, she was a solid enough side character. So was Millie. Overall, a step up from your stereotypical characters but I don’t feel any particular affinity for them.

SOUND

Heh, I liked the OP and the first ED. The second ED was quite unremarkable. I liked most of the voices, but the thing that bothered me in this department was the stupid narrator. He made me so angry! I don’t think I’ve ever heard a narrator in an anime before. His stupid voice would come on and I’d be like SHUT UP. It really seemed to distance you more from the whole show. Maybe they were trying to keep in touch with some of the original novels, but if I want a third person view of things I’ll go read the books (as soon as I learn kanji, which I must do).

Another thing that got on my nerves a bit was the overly dramatic background music. I know a lot of anime has this problem, actually ALL types of film are at risk for this. I mean Rose of Versailles? There were some ridiculous dramatic BGM moments there. But that was the 70’s.

ART AND ANIMATION

REALLY, REALLY DODGY. Episode 13 in particular. Oof. That was actually painful to watch. But it did make episodes 19-22 stand out as well-animated. I don’t understand why you would animate the second to last arc well, and then go back to slightly crappy for the finale. Que? But yeah, from distorted faces to distorted faces… to coloring and shadows being different for each episode… the CG was very obvious, too. Instead of pissing me off though, it just makes me feel bad for them. Poor things… if only they had a bigger budget…

OVERALL

This probably sounds backwards after all the griping above, but I actually quite enjoyed The Third. Maybe it was the element of not knowing what to expect? It was like Roulette! It was fun. But maybe it would’ve left a better impression on me overall if I’d been able to do more of a marathon with it. Or maybe not. Who knows?

I feel like I really want to compare this to Jyu Ou Sei, but I don’t know where to start. I did enjoy Jyu Ou Sei more, but honestly, I really can’t decide which one was better. I know Jyu Ou Sei had a LOT of faults, but at least it has consistant (and lovely) animation going for it. Hmm. Perhaps something to contemplate on a rainy day after some rewatching?

Bottom line: Is The Third right for YOU? Are you tolerant of varying animation quality? If you can be a bit of a snob, like me, you might not want to watch this unless you’re feeling particularly nice and open-minded. If you’ve been watching too much shoujo and you’re sick of it but don’t want something with a SUPER intense plot, this might be good. And of course, if the summary (sorry I’m too lazy to copy-paste from ANN) interests you, than by all means watch it. It’s definitely given me some stuff to think about. I wasn’t really “into it” but maybe you will be?!

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