Ah, how many times have I watched this anime? 3 times? 4 times? Whatever the amount of times I watch this, I never get bored of this anime; every time you watch it again, you find something new that you finally noticed. I love Black Rock Shooter, however I know that others might not agree with me. I've spent such a long time choosing over what to rate each of the categories, but finally, I agreed with myself. Even though, this anime just demands to be reviewed!
The story of BRS is a very difficult one. You must actually have a quite clever brain to understand it! Basically, the very energetic girl, Kuroi Mato, meets a quite interesting girl at her school. Takanashi Yomi. A very calm yet beautiful girl at Mato's age. Her grace is a massive contrast compared to Mato, our story's heroine. However they became good friends. Simultaneously, in an alternate universe, a young girl (named Black Rock Shooter) is battling with skull-loving Dead Master. These two scenarios mix into each other, which makes the whole story a lot harder so that's why rated it 8/10.
I, myself, really like the animation of the anime, although just like the anime itself, it's a 50-50 love-hate subject. The world of Mato and Yomi is quite light and almost uses no dark colours, excepten something really dramatic happens. Which means that it is actually colorised to match the atmosphere/feeling/situation. In Black Rock Shooter's World, on the other hand, the artists used quite darker colours, I don't really remember seeing anything in that world that was bright, meaning that, unlike in Mato's world, the Black Rock Shooter world is all done under one colour theme/set. Some may dislike this art, while other may find it incredibly breathtaking.
The animation is quite good, but through most of Mato's world, it's never any more than that. However, during the fights between Black Rock Shooter and the other women of that world, the true beauty of this animation comes to life. Some of the best action of any anime is shown here, with the surreal abilities of the characters and perfect buildings making for excellent long-distance shots and close hand-to-hand combat.
I have to say that the music is good throughout the scenes, but not so memorable... The voice acting does deserve a mention, though, I must admit! Hanazawa Kana brings a chirpy, girly voice to Mato, in contrast a melancholic voice to Black Rock Shooter (who is supposed to be like Mato, if you haven't noticed). Sawashiro Miyuki portrayal of an elegant and slightly gloomy voice is given to Yomi, and brings another level of depth to the character. Dead Master (who, just like Black Rock Shooter and Mato, is supposed to potray Yomi). never speaks even once, but this does give a good effect of what the character is like.
There aren't many characters in this anime, really. Black Rock Shooter is a rather confusing during this anime, as she is found either walking or fighting, yet she's actually supposed to be the heroine/main character. It is only in her final battle with Dead Master and meeting with Mato that we find out she is so caring of others. Mato seems a bit too obsessed with Yomi, and shows how much she truly loves her near the end. Yomi, on the other hand, starts off simply viewing Mato as a kind girl to whom she is a friend. When the two are distanced, the line between her and the evil Dead Master is blurred. The only other character worth a mention is Kotari Yuu, the manager of the basketball team on which Mato plays. She is the most relatable character because she is willing to do anything to stay with her friend--even if it means destroying the budding relationship between her friend and another girl. And that is the problem with "Black Rock Shooter." There's many links between the characters from the reality world and the characters from the fantasy/battle world, and we find out more and more about each of them as the OVA goes past...
Overall, I must rate this anime 8.5/10 because I did have a couple of moans, but I must admit that this is an enjoyable anime. It actually was made on top of the Black Rock Shooter song (by Hatsune Miku) which came out before the anime! Unfortunately, it ends with a cliffhanger, which is the thing I hate the most in anime/movies and I know that many people do too.
But, oh well! Enjoy the anime!