Another week, another seemingly forgotten anime that has some yuri moments. Is it good? Is it bad? Who cares?! It has a yuri kiss! 😛
Synopsis: In the far future, humans abandon a devastated Earth and traveled to outer space. However, due to unknown phenomenon that prevents them from traveling into space, humanity returns to Earth only to find it inhospitable except for Japan.
To accommodate the entire human population, pocket dimensions are created around Japan to house in the populace. In order to find a way to return to outer space, the humans began reenacting human history according to the Holy book Testament. But in the year 1413 of the Testament Era, the nations of the pocket dimensions invade and conquer Japan, dividing the territory into feudal fiefdoms and forcing the original inhabitants of Japan to leave.
It is now the year 1648 of the Testament Era, the refugees of Japan now live in the city ship Musashi, where it constantly travels around Japan while being watched by the Testament Union, the authority that runs the re-enactment of history. However, rumors of an apocalypse and war begin to spread when the Testament stops revealing what happens next after 1648.
Taking advantage of this situation, Toori Aoi, head of Musashi Ariadust Academy’s Supreme Federation and President of the student council, leads his fellow classmates to use this opportunity to regain their homeland.
To me, that synopsis makes this anime sound unusual and not very enticing. Anyway, the story in Kyoukaisenjou no Horizon is extremely heavy on diplomatic relations that involve the various warring nations. It’s kind of like an anime version of the board game Risk, just probably not as entertaining. With a lot of characters, nations, locations, organizations, and titles involved, it’s a pretty tall task to not get confused by all this. Matters are made even worse thanks to an abundance of exposition that only serves up a bunch of useless information that you could honestly do without.
Although this all sounds like a very uptight anime that’s too serious, that’s not always the case. There isn’t a shortage of comedic moments, though, the comedy almost always just fell flat for me. It’s just your basic crude humor that’s been done a million times before (and done a lot better). On the flip side, the action happens to be pretty nice.
With an emphasis on the use of spells in combat, the action is probably one of the best things about this show. The large-scale battles involving armies are ho-hum, but the one-on-one fights are where the combat shines. I was hoping for more of these scenes, yet the battles often take a backseat to the political intrigue.
By the end of the anime, the story isn’t complete, so if you’re truly invested in what’s going on, it’s off to the second season for you. Personally, I’ve already had more than enough, and I don’t care enough about the story or these characters to bother watching/reviewing another season. Maybe I’m in the minority, but I just thought the story was more convoluted and condensed than it needed to be.
The cast of characters is overly large, and aside from a select few, most of them only play minor roles.
This marks my 101st review here on YR, and of all those reviews, I don’t think there’s a protagonist that I’ve disliked more than the one in this show. Toori is insufferable, and he’s basically the prototypical protagonist from a bad harem anime that’s been transplanted here. Unfortunately, he’s also a major source of this anime’s “comedy”, which mostly consists of him groping some of the female characters and generally just being a huge perv. Perhaps some people can find that amusing, but at least in this instance, I’m not one of them.
Some of the other supporting characters seem sort of interesting. There’s a naked incubus, a strongman who wears a bucket as a helmet, a guy who looks like a ninja version of Terry Bogard from Fatal Fury, a lolicon, a blatant Indian stereotype, a Shinto priestess, a literal slimy blob, and many others. A lot of these ancillary characters aren’t involved too much, yet they somehow manage to stand out more than you’d think.
On a more positive note, Toori’s sister isn’t nearly as unbearable as him, and it’s not just because of her giant boobs, eroticism, and dancing. Okay, it kind of is, but to be fair, a few characters have huge boobs.
Okay, so I hate Toori, but at least the object of his affection is pretty interesting. Horizon, or P-01s, to be exact, is a cybernetic doll that resembles Horizon (Toori’s childhood friend and daughter of a high-ranking feudal lord) and surfaces many years after the real Horizon’s death. Being a doll, she doesn’t really have any emotions, though her singing and deadpan tone serve to give her an injection of personality. She quickly finds herself at the center of the international conflict, and it’s up to that horn dog Toori to help rescue her. How romantic…
Masazumi (voiced by the awesome Miyuki Sawashiro) and Futayo were two of my favorite characters, and that’s mostly because they were portrayed as strong characters that could hold their own, be it through combat (Futayo) or debate (Masazumi). I think it’s also worth mentioning that Masazumi underwent gender reassignment surgery in order to uphold her family name, though, she didn’t complete the process and is still treated as a female (even though she wears men’s clothing). By the end, she goes back to wearing the female “uniform”, which just so happens to be skintight and rather revealing. Of course it is…
These next two characters don’t play as significant a role as the previous two (especially Adele), but I enjoyed them regardless. Adele’s an adorable blonde girl with glasses, and Suzu is an extremely shy (and cute) blind girl with a strong intuition. I would have loved to have seen more of them (at the expense of some of the others), but I guess I’ll just have to be happy with the limited screen time they did receive.
Blah, blah, blah. The reason this is being reviewed here on YuriReviews is simply because of Malga and Margot. The first time I learned of this anime was when I saw a screenshot of two of the characters kissing, which instantly meant I was going to eventually watch it. Long before Pharmercy achieved aerial superiority, it was these two witches that ruled the skies. Predictably, they’re gay af, and in episode 10, the aforementioned kiss finally happens. Up until this point, Malga and Margot didn’t play much of a factor in the proceedings—other than an action scene in the very first episode. If anything could’ve made the season more enjoyable for me, it would’ve been seeing a lot more of them, because as it stands now, watching an entire thirteen episode anime for just one kiss is unreasonable. Let me save you the time and effort and just show it to you~
So the supporting characters aren’t too shabby, but not even a legitimate yuri kiss can help me overlook the fact that Tooru just proceeded to nearly ruin this anime for me. If you can manage to tolerate him more than I could, you might find some interesting characters here. The yuri rating may make this anime seem more enticing, but if anything, that number may be inflated due to having a canon yuri side pairing (that ultimately doesn’t get a lot of meaningful screen time, mind you).
Thus far, this review hasn’t been very flattering, but I think the most appealing aspect of it has to be the production values. Both the animation and sound are top-notch, and the use of CG for the ships and mecha is pretty well-done. You’re just as likely to hear some standard jpop as you are the more intense music that usually accompanies the battle scenes, and I found the uptempo OP to be particularly nice. Thanks to the large cast, there’s plenty of voice talent on display such as Jun Fukuyama, Nao Touyama, Daisuke Ono, and Aoi Yuuki, to name a few.
With Code Geass, Cowboy Bebop, Gintama, and InuYasha under its belt, production studio Sunrise is no stranger to quality action, and the fight scenes here do nothing to disprove that. Long story short, no matter what you may think of the story and characters, I think it’s hard to argue that Kyoukaisenjou no Horizon doesn’t look and sound really good~
Is this anime terrible? I don’t believe so. Does that mean I enjoyed it? Nope.
This anime has been on my to-do list for a while, and I started watching it a while ago… only to stop myself because I simply lost interest. If Kyoukaisenjou no Horizon didn’t have that Malga x Margot kiss— and if I didn’t feel obligated to publish a review—this is an anime that I would’ve dropped without much hesitation. If you’re into ecchi fantasy anime involving political power struggles, you’ve found your perfect match. If that doesn’t sound enticing to you, then you may not like what this anime has to offer, and it’s only exacerbated by some brief yuri that teases as much as it delights.