This season, Kyoto Animation once again tests the waters with a deviation from their usual cute girls/cute boys formula with Kyoukai no Kanata, or Beyond the Boundary. This first episode was exactly what KyoAni does. This might be great for the masses, but I don’t know if it will be enough to sustain my attention for long.
Beyond the Boundary is a ‘dark’ fantasy story, following the life of high school sophomore Akihito Kanbara. One day, Akihito meets freshman Mirai Kuriyama when he attempts to talk her off the edge of the school in what he thinks is a suicide attempt. And in that first meeting, she tries to kill him with a sword of blood, finding that he is half demon-type, and invulnerable to wounds because he can heal quickly. As we progress through this first episode, we find that Mirai is isolated from the rest of the ‘demon’ hunters, because of her ability to manipulate her blood, which is unique amongst those that fight the dark spirits.
‘KyoAni anime may not always be the best anime in the world, but it is incomparably the best dull anime’
Every time I start a new Kyoto Animation studio show, this quote goes through my mind. They have a formula. They follow a plan. They write specific character types. They’ve become predictable. It’s obvious why they chose this light novel series, as it plays right into their strengths. A Romeo an Juliet romance, a cute, but not overwhelmingly beautiful, lead female with case of bumbelitis, and a generic male lead that can’t keep himself away from her despite their differences. I feel like I’ve seen this before, that these characters are just regurgitations of their previous shows. But, as always, It is beautifully animated in every aspect. And it’s hard to ignore the accomplishment that is.
So what am I going to do? I’ll watch it. I’ll give it three episodes, and find it just interesting enough to continue on, and I’ll watch it through to the end. KyoAni is like crystal meth; you just can’t stop cold turkey. And of course, there is always the chance that I’ll be wrong. That this show just might be better than it lets on.