The story may confuse those who watch this OVA for the first time, but it does make more sense after watching it for a second time. Basically, it jumps between the two girls becoming friends (and later, their friendship starting to fall apart) in the real world, and the two girls fighting each other with super powers in some alternate universe. The constant jumping will probably confuse veiwers; so, I shall offer a hint: all of the alternate universe scenes take place after the main girl merges with Black Rock Shooter. In any case, the story is entertaining for what it is, but there plenty of things that aren't explained. On the positive side, veiwers may relate to the falling out between the main girl and her friend.
The animation is quite good, especially the action scenes.
The background music is well done and helps enhance the scenes.
Since this is only a 50-something minute OVA, one shouldn't expect too much in the way of character development. Still, you do see the progression and the degeneration of the girls' friendship. The characters themselves are fairly likable and relatable.
Basically, this is one of those "shut your brain off and enjoy the ride" type shows. While the story may have it's flaws, the nice action scenes and the good production values make it worth the watch. As for whether the TV series is better, I wouldn't know since (as of this review) haven't seen the TV version yet. If/when I watch the TV series, I may review it too.
The story was good, but trying to fit so much into one episode was just waaay too much. At the beginning, one second you would be watching a slice of life kinda thing, and then the next second it would just go to two girls in another world fighting each other. Extremely confusing much? At the end, you figure out how they are related, but a big question still remains: who the hell is BRS? You don't get any detail on that...zero. *spoiler* And if that isn't good enough, suddenly Yomi goes missing, and then we find out that she somehow got to the other world and was beating up BRS because of what was happening in this world and blah blah blah-WTF?
I honestly don't know what to think of the animation. At some points, I think the animation looks competely awesome, but next thing you know, it's just plain crappy. That's all I have to say on that matter.
The voice acting was good, then again, I'm not good at judging Japanese voice acting, so excuse me if it's actually terrible. xD Anyway, is it just me, or did they not use the BRS song sung by Miku, for the BRS anime? Seriously? Can't they fit two and two together, or are they really that retarded? If you're gonna make an anime about it, shouldn't they at least use the fricking song? Honestly...
Characters...for all I know, there's "School Girl 1", "School Girl 2", and "School Girl 3". I'm really bad at remembering character names, but because it was just one episode, I did not get a lot of time to remember them. I knew close to nothing about all of them, other than the fact School Girl 1 likes to go to a place overlooking her town, School Girl 2 moves with her family a lot, and School Girl 3 is an annoying little brat that School Girl 2 is jealous of. Amazing, right? They're the characters that make me want to sarcastically say, "How original".
The story originated from a song, so I can't say it's good point is being original. Confusing, unoriginal, poor animation, no character developement...do I really need to go on? Overall, it's garbage, crap, not even good enough to be flushed down a public toilet. Don't watch it. It's a waste of time. :T It you want a story watch the MV for BRS. That's way more interesting than this shit.
A very action packed OVA, but it's kinda confusing if you only watch it once, because this is definitely one of those OVA's that need to be watched at least twice if you wanna really know what's going on. There's some details here and there that you may miss, or some things you just don't understand right off the bat, and that's why a second viewing may be necessary.
The characters were all pretty good, the Otherselves a bit cooler than their human counterparts, despite the whole not speaking thing. The music was average in my personal opinion, just the kind of music one normally expects in anime; songs that help to carry the story and scene, that's all. The animation was standard too, but the odd sequence of 3D room spin scenes are pretty nice.
In the end though, there's just some things that never really get cleared up, and leaves you wondering why the animators never tied those ends up. For me, the biggest thing was whatever happened to Strength. She stands around on the d**n cliff for half the OVA, and then all of a sudden she just decides to go AWOL and jump into the seemingly endless pit that's below it? And then you never hear from her again, and somehow that's fine? OKAY.
But in all honesty, it's not like we really know a lot about the other Otherselves either. We see Deadmaster and BRS fight a bit, and that's basically all. Even in the end, you still don't get to learn about BRS, besides the fact that she like, merges with Mato....
Overall, a fairly good story, and cool characters. If you really wanna know more about Otherselves and stuff, watch the TV series, but be warned, it's nothing like the OVA. But hey, at least you get to hear Supercell's Black Rock Shooter in the opening.
Back when I started this OVA in 2010 I wondered whether this was going to be a good OVA or just an excuse to cash in on Black★Rock Shooter's popularity. Curious to know what I thought about it? Then go ahead and continue reading.
This OVA had the potential to be a good one, but it had some very big issues that made me not enjoy it. For starters the plot is very confusing. Why is Black Rock Shooter fighting Dead Master? What is their relation with those middle school student? What's going on? None of those questions get answered and instead the viewer is left puzzled. Another problem it had was the runtime itself. In 50 minutes there's not enough time to flesh out the characters and develop the story. Probably it'd have been a good idea to remove all the action scenes so they could dedicate more time to the characters, but if that happened then this show should have been called "My Middle School Drama Can't be Such a Tearjerker" instead of "Black★Rock Shooter".
Not everything in this OVA was bad though, The animation was fluid, the characters were well-drawn and the backgrounds were pretty (especially the landscapes). Also the voice actors did a good job, and the background music as well as the sound effects were good.
In short, this OVA could have been a masterpiece, but in the end it was a mess. Though at least it was pretty.
Story and characters
As the synopsis states, Black Rock Shooter is a story about two dimensions/universes/worlds. In one, dark, universe, there is the cool fighting loli called Black Rock Shooter, fighting against other people. We get to see a bit of what this world looks like, but apart from fights nothing much happens (except at the ending, but i'm not going to spoil that) You may ask why they're fighting? The thing is, I don't know. It's never made clear why they're fighting. Personal grudge? War? Hero trying to slay the demon lord lady? We don't know anything about this world, nor about the characters there: they don't ever talk. It may be better than Naruto's Talk no Jutsu, but it's hard to get to know anything about them this way...
What about the other universe then? Well, in the other universe (that is more like ours), we get to see a pseudo-yuri slice of life / school life story about the friendship between two girls (Mato and Yomi), and how one girl seems to get jealous when the other gets another friend. Most of the story happens here, but luckily for me (I don't really care for that kind of stories) they glossed over the more uninteresting stuff by just showing it real quick and putting some music on it. Great move imo, since it still gives the right atmosphere without making things boring. As for the characters, they're just normal high school girls and that's about all you can say about them. It's not like one can expect too much in 50 minutes though, so I can somewhat forgive that.
The combination of the two worlds may seem weird, but it actually makes it interesting because of the "mystery" of how they're related. You're constantly looking forward to the conclusion, where you'll get the answers you're so desperately waiting for! Except you don't get any answers at all... It's a real pity, the ending leaves tons of questions, and feels like bait to get you to watch the TV series.
The animation and artwork is very well done, both when it comes to the action scenes and when we get to see some panoramic scenes. (open pics in new tab for bigger size)
The choreography for the fights was great too imo, which made at least the action scenes exciting and interesting - even if you have no idea who's fighting, if it looks good it can at least give some visual joy.
The music was very nice and fitting, I especally liked the music during the action scenes. Not something I'd just look up to listen to while doing something else, but it did help to create the right atmosphere in this anime.
Very enjoyable OVA, even though the story and characterization wasn't that good. Glowing eyes and big weapons in fights with good choreography also help in making it cool. It's not the greatest anime ever made, but it's enjoyable to say the least