When I first encountered Black Bullet, I thought it was the adaptation of an action manga, so my expectations were not very low. But then I found out that the manga is just a different adaptation of the actual source material, which happens to be a light novel. That was enough to lower the bar a few thousand miles.
Oh such joy, a story based on a light novel; what could possibly be worse? Why, pre-airing hype of course. There wasn’t nearly as much as there was for Mahouka, which aired along with it, but the ones who had something to say about it, described it as Attack On Titan (AOT for short) in the near future. Oh such joy; we are already comparing it to the most overrated title from the year before this one; what could possibly be worse?
The similarities don’t stop at the identical premise by the way; because if it did, it would be far closer to Blue Gender. But since that show is older than 2 years and thus almost nobody knows about it, let’s plagiarize as much as we can get away with, a recent overrated show everybody is dickriding, for the attention and not for the quality. And thus we get the same tune in the opening song, the same voice actor for the protagonist, and the same season it came out.
Let’s dig into the wonder that this anime is all about. First of all you are never given the impression that humanity is on the verge of extinction by huge bugs and that there is some sort of horror/survival going on in here. Nobody cares about it. In fact, we don’t even see the population having anything to say about the bugs, since the plot centers immediately on the protagonist trying to stop some masked dude who wants to destroy the world for some contrived reason.
Speaking of the protagonist, in his introduction, just minutes into the first episode, we get one of the most retarded one-liners ever: “If you don’t want to die, survive Rentaro.” Yeah, and if you don’t want to be hungry, eat Rentaro. Turns out it was a very bad fansub translation but whatever; it was more than enough for the cracks to start appearing. Because immediately after that we get a time skip, which automatically means shit happened out of screen and all character progression jumped over the cliff to its doom.
And no, they didn’t use a time skip so they can remove all the boring parts. They skipped all the superpowers the protagonist got in that time period, just so they can fool the audience to think he is a normal teenager, everybody can identify with. Which is a very common trick light novels, and badly written stories in general, are using. The try to make you think the protagonist is an average person like yourself. He is not that strong and tries his best to climb the lower steps of the power level hierarchy. Who wouldn’t identify with such a normal person? And then they gradually keep revealing super amazing skills only he was possessing since the beginning to make the audience think he is amazing for being a Jesus figure they are already rooting for as an otherwise normal person.
As if that wasn’t enough of a problem, the story is written to be as inconsistent as possible. Suffering from the same syndrome most modern anime do, it thinks it is great to be dark and violent on one moment, followed by being light and comical in the immediate next moment. Because modern anime fans have such awful tastes that actually believe having people screaming in horror as they are butchered to pieces, at the same time as having naked little girls who want to have sex with the protagonist, is depth and maturity. As if investing time to make something only sad or only happy for more than five minutes will make the otakus to switch the damn channel. I mean, who give a shit about atmosphere or characterization anymore? Modern anime are all about naked little girls and senseless gore.
The funny part is how there were a lot of people defending this bullshit while the show was airing. They were saying that if you live in a world where giant monsters attack daily and kill people, everybody will be considering that to be normal. This is why running to buy beans in discount right after you witness a guy killing your friends and almost yourself, is completely normal to them. It even makes it easier to explore the setting this way, since the characters will be reacting to everything in an apathetic way. Dear retarded defenders of this logic, hear me out. IF THE CHARACTERS DON’T CARE, NEITHER DO THE VIEWERS CARE.
And this is not simply the result of this piece of crap anime being based on light novels, where shit happens and everybody forgets about it after five minutes. It’s also because the anime rushes to adapt multiple chapters per episode, to the point the pacing is ridiculously fast. Everything happens in seconds and we then move to the next thing with no downtime between events.
And don’t assume the anime would be fine if it had proper pacing, since the script is random bullshit. Especially the whole theme about the lolis being mistreated by evil adults because they have superpowers. Man, the people of this world are so retarded; they know the only thing that can kill the monsters comes from those girls, and yet they kick away their only chance for survival, without ever explaining why. This is not a cotton plantation in southern America, ok? The girls are not after your jobs and you don’t hate them because their skin has a different color. They are the only thing that keeps you alive. Hell, they are strong enough to kill you all at the age of ten. So why are you being such assholes for no reason? Talk about cartoony villains.
As you can probably guess, the only reason this stupid thing happens, is for victimizing the girls, and making the protagonist seem like a Good Samaritan, for being one of the few people who is NOT a stupid adult with a death wish. He loves these lolis and does his best to make a pedophile’s paradise out of them. And the show promotes that as funny instead of cringe worthy. Dammit Japan, if it’s not incest, it’s going to be pedophilia; it just has to be one or the other, doesn’t it?
So, anyways, he is a teenager and he goes to a Japanese high school. Why is there a high school in a post apocalyptic setting? Because light novel writers are incapable to write a story without one. Is he at least learning martial arts or something useful for surviving in that place? Nope, the school exists for no reason at all. And the person who gives him jobs to go around killing monsters while making sure not to be late for school every morning is a school girl with huge bouncing boobs who of course and is in love with him for no reason other than light novels. So, when he is not killing monsters or going to a school where he learns and does nothing, our heroic protagonist spends his time home, where he has endless excuses for hentai doujins to be made, since he is constantly being sexually assaulted by either horny little girls, or big breasted high school girls.
By the way, do you know what his objective in the story is? He has none! He is just following orders by the very retarded adults who want to be exterminated, thus is in effect a boring public servant with no vision or goals in life. And the story is so badly written that he never explains why he doesn’t just join the masked dude and kill all those racist idiots. This way he can create a just nation of super lolis with him as the emperor. He is strong enough to do that, he obviously fights for justice, and really likes those super lolis, SO WHY DOESN’T HE DO IT? No reason given. Why is this guy even the protagonist?
His super loli on the other hand is a far better character. Cute, powerful, has a tragic life, and is even willing to be naked all the time and have sex with you just to show you her affection. Who wouldn’t like that? By the way, she is ten. But love knows no boundaries, right? Anyways, whatever drama they were trying to build around her being mistreated for being special is magically resolved after a few minutes, so all interest you could have about her as a character instead of a jailbait evaporates fast.
The only other character who is barely worth to mention is the masked evil dude, and only because he was OP for 3 episodes. Seriously, this guy could brush off any fighter in the show and keep going on his quest to destroy the world because… err, discrimination shit and because he was made to destroy stuff. Yeah, not even his motives make any sense. But hey, he was awesome as a cartoony villain and it’s complete bullshit how he got defeated the fourth time he fought the protagonist. That’s right, the fourth. He had the chance to kill him three times in a row and didn’t because the script said so. He killed everybody else who stood in his way, but not our hero who is protected by the plot armor of bullshit.
And the way he got defeated was one of the biggest asspulls in history. The protagonist reveals out of nowhere that he was a cyborg or some shit, and kicks the crap out of him. Not only it was completely anti-climactic, it also made it seem like Rentaro was all-powerful since the very beginning and yet didn’t use his skills to trash the masked dude since episode one. By not doing so, hundreds of people were killed, and the city was almost destroyed. And of course his booby supervisor didn’t bother to tell anyone about it all this time. She just allowed hundreds of innocent people to go after their undeserved deaths.
And of course, nobody bothered to accuse the hero for doing such a horrible thing, which led to the easily avoidable loss of half their military defenses against the bugs. But it’s ok, since they also didn’t reward Rentaro for saving the city. Seriously, the next episode begins and everybody acts like there never was a masked dude or they were a step away from annihilation. Why is everybody ignoring this walking atomic bomb? Why is he going to a school where he does nothing, instead of being the elite protector of the city? Oh light novels, you are all so atrocious, and you come out by the dozens every season.
Special mention to how despite all that bullshit, the author is still constantly trying to present Rentaro as some tragic figure who is insecure and afraid he is not capable enough. There is a scene where he is about to shoot a huge monster that is about to destroy the city. He is a proficient gunner, he has a clear shot, nobody is trying to throw his aiming off, and yet out of nowhere he is acting scared and doubts his overpowered skills. With him having shown no weaknesses, and with no time invested on his fears so far, that scene was trying to create drama out of nothing and came off as completely retarded.
Believe it or not, all this time I didn’t even mention the worst problem this show has, that completely eclipses all the other issues, and that is its terrible exposition. Everything is told, nothing is shown. And by everything, I mean even the most fundamental information is thrown at our faces. Everybody talks in a completely fake way, telling us things that normally would never be mentioned. A simple scene would play out like this:
“Hello woman of the organization that gave me the bullets. What are you doing in my apartment, on the fourth floor, during the afternoon? You want me to cook you some fried fish because you are hungry? Ok, sit next to that sofa that was given to me by my uncle. In the meantime I will start cooking. Look, I am cooking. I cook the fish. See? Fish.”
Plain ridiculous. Black Bullet is a very good example of everything that could go wrong, goes wrong. There is nothing to like in it, unless you are not thinking while you are watching, and all you care for is to laugh at the harem lead trying to run away from horny naked ten year olds who want to have sex with him, before he pulls a magic trinket out of his ass and saves the day. Light novels in a nutshell.