Black Rock Shooter takes a drama component that, at best, is a 2 and forces it all the way up to 11, making for some really overblown adolescent girl drama. Take it as you will.
The drama of Kagari and Yomi is simply overblown, just as the melodrama was in episode 1 when Mato cried. Parents move away to work abroad, girl runs for the car and gets hit. I swear, I thought that I could hear the driver actually pushing harder on the pedal in hopes they would’ve killed Kagari. She’s a bitch just for the pure sake of being a bitch, and she seems to be a straight-up NEET also. It probably was a writing choice to make the drama as overblown as it possibly could, in hopes for the “So Bad, It’s Good” saying that apparently is matching up really well with Guilty Crown currently (at least from the buzz I hear). Mato talking about the Tiny Birds’ Game and even the music that plays underneath Yomi begging Kagari to be a normal girl, it all adds up to a crappy, maybe laughable setting for the school-life half of BRS. This is what Black Rock Shooter will be for an unfortunate amount of time each week. You can either get sucked into it, mock it, or just take it knowing better scenes are minutes away.
Now to give a little praise to Black Rock Shooter. The action here was even better than episode 1 now that BRS got to do some fighting and we got to see more of her arsenal. It’s pretty awesome to see BRS shoot down a bunch of macaroons with a chaingun, as weird a sentence as that is to write. The CG is working really well with Ordet & Sanzigen. It’s not super smooth for right now as is the case with TV releases; a number a screenshots you’ll take might look a little pixelated, but considering that studios flesh out the details in Blu-ray releases and that this is a TV show (not something like Redline), there’s some really solid action to be seen here. This is why this show is watched. I think that Black Rock Shooter is supposed to be quite mainstream, and even though you don’t see the cut, Chariot’s head slowly falling off is a pretty gruesome scene.
One way you can go about it is to watch Black Rock Shooter Abridged – where you reduce the episode to about 6-8 minutes and have all that awesome action to take in. Below is ep. 2 sliced and diced. I don’t know if this user plans to keep doing this, but it’d be quite a service to some people if they did.
The one thing I’m appreciative of about what Black Rock Shooter is doing in terms of story is that the connect between what’s happening in the real world and the other world is more clearly noticeable. I eluded to it a touch in my thoughts on episode 1, but progressing thru the story the way we are, at least there’s some context to the action. It may not be good, but it’s context and just a little bit of spice to the action. BRS shows emotion through her eyes, and that’s helping out with scenes like when Yomi/Dead Master is being carried away by ants. These fighters don’t feel completely soulless, which is a good direction in my book.
I can’t remember if the term “dream” was tossed around in the OVA, but that’s heavily implied by Saya, the woman in the Dawn Consultation center at school.
Now I could be dead wrong on that considering the next couple of points of interest I have. Black Gold Saw intervening is one thing since we have no idea what her role is in either the human or other worlds; she probably is some kind of Overlord of the other world. I don’t understand what slicing Chariot’s head off is converting to for Kagari here. By all accounts, you’d think that a death blow and Yomi screaming (while the view was still in BRS) would’ve meant Kagari’s death, but that doesn’t seem to be the case.