Eureka Seven AO – rage, tears and spoilers

posted in: Anime Review, Featured | 15

Time for a new anime review this time it’s about the recently ended show called Eureka Seven AO. I actually planned to write a positively toned review of this anime, since it was decent most of the time, but the last two episodes made this impossible after all. First some introductional words.

Eureka Seven AO is a 24 episode long anime from BONES that aired from April to November 2013. It was planned as a sequel of the popular 50 episode long anime Eureka Seven from 2006.

Im a huge fan of the prequel Eureka Seven, which had everything a good shounen adventure should have; an epic storyline, great supporting and main characters, epic battles and a cute first love romance and to top it all, an more than impressive, unforgettable OST was also part of it.

I already watched it three times and also bought both DVD Boxes and both OST Soundtracks.

As I heard about a sequel of my beloved show, I was very happy, but at the same time I also thought that it would be quite challenging to come up with something as epic as Eureka Seven.

httpvh://youtu.be/7CeX76jKAS4

The story of Eureka Seven AO starts on the Island of Okinawa, where our main character Fukai, AO lives together with an old doctor, who took care of him after his mother disappeared. Okinawa aims for autonomy and so the inhabitants are suspicious about any person from outside. Ao is mainly shunned in the community of the Island, but he has cute childhood friend called Naru.

Obviously Eureka Seven AO plays in another dimension, here are also Scub Corals (huge coral like lifeforms) who emerge Trapar which is kinda hazard to the human body. Another new force appears in this dimension, the Secrets which are of unknown origin. Their goal is to destroy the Scub Coral, but they are also a threat to humanity with the destruction their attacks are causing.

The private organization Generation Blue takes care of dismantling the Scub Corals to prevent the massive attacks of arriving Secrets. In order to achieve that, they excavate the cubes called quartz, which are inside the Scub Corals. After an incident on Okinawa, Ao joins the organization as member of the mecha pilot team Pied Piper. His comrades are the 16 year old Fleur and the 15 year old Elena. Elena and Ao have a quite good relationship, while Elena… well she’s Elena.

Eureka Seven AO wanted to create a complex political framework, there are many different parties with different goals that they want to be achieved; Okinawa, Japan, China, USA, Generation Blue, Scub Corals and Secrets. One really could loose track while watching this anime on a weekly basis. I found it quite hard to follow with the many plot twist, time and dimensional travel and fast pace.

Out of good will and in hope to get more info out of the story, I watched the whole anime for a second time, where it actually made more sense to me and offered more entertainment while being marathoned, but it still feels chaotic and halfheartedly done at some points

possible spoilers time from here on…

Soon a true villain appears, an invincible creature called Truth, mhhh what did he actually want, ah yes being evil and changing the world were his goals. The main problem that Eureka Seven AO suffers from is relatively weak character development, between all these story twists the characters are changing their positions and purposes too fast.

The weakly developed characters lead to the next problem, lifefless character interactions and relationships. I rarely sensed real team spirit between Ao, Fleur and Elena or Ao and Naru.

Only the OVA “Jungfrau no Hanabanatachi” manages to portray some very convincing moments of interaction and a nearly friendship like scenes between Ao and his comrades.
There really should have been more character centered episodes in this anime, the viewer just learns a little more than the absolutely necessary about each character, even AO as main character stays plain most of the time. Elena as mysterious, energetic, weirdo otaku is the most interesting character, not because she has more depth compared to the others, but she is fun.

As kind of service for fans of the old Eureka Seven there were some guest appearances of machines and old characters. The audience was quite enchanted by the few appearances of Eureka from the predecessor anime. In this sequel she turned out as the mother of AO.
The appearance of a grown up Renton in episode 22 was one of my personal highlights.
I actually have the opinion that it had been more interesting to give more screentime to Renton and Eureka instead of lame AO. Don’t get me wrong he is a good boy, but really boring.

Fortunately, one very good part of Eureka Seven AO is the visual  presentation, it looks very good overall with vivid colors and appealing characterdesigns and also very smooth animations.

Now I will talk about the things that turned Eureka Seven AO into so such an unsatisfying show.

After episode 22 the anime took a break, probably to finish the last two remaining episodes. Wrapping up the plot and all the subplots in only two episodes already appeared quite optimistic, but it turned out worse than I could have ever imagined. They literally pulled off a new rushed story arc in the last 1 3/4 episodes that rendered all the episodes and characters before useless.

They used a dimension altering device in the story to conclude this anime and get rid of the unanswered questions and subplots, that’s so lame that I can’t put it into words how angry I was. I can’t believe that the same director as for the old Eureka Seven was in charge of Eureka Seven AO, as well. It makes me wonder why this show turned into such an half baked sequel.

It makes no sense at all to build such a complex story when you don’t have an idea how to end it in a satisfying way. There actually are a few nice ideas and good looking action scenes in this anime, but overall it is not enough too reduce my disappointment after the last episode. They should have kept it more simple without including present day politics stuff or cleared everything in a less rushed manner in 20 more episodes. After J.C. Staff already drove Shakugan no Shana III against the wall this year, Bones followed them with Eureka Seven Ao, that could have been a great show, if the plot had been planned more thoughtful with the spirit of it’s predecessor.

Fans of the predecessor won’t like like Eureka Seven Ao cause it’s storytelling quality is not even close to it. In case you like uncountable plot twists in exchange for weakly portrayed characters you could give this a try, but honestly I can’t recommend anyone to watch this strange show.

I rather would recommend to watch the Original Eureka Seven it’s a fantastic anime.

 

httpvh://youtu.be/CfK7NKqDPqk

Have you watched this show? or did you have a better opinion of Eureka Seven AO ?

please share your opinion in the comments.

 

 

 

 

15 Responses

  1. tim

    I don’t get why in the final moments of the conclusion, why eureka and renton didn’t stay in that time ten years in the past and just raise AO when he’s two years old so they can be a real family. Kinda hope in some way they do another series but way longer, maybe longer than the prequel.

    • wieselhead

      I could not follow the creators intention, either. I would have preferred a more happy end, it just doesn’t feel right to end it like that.
      As I heard of an new Eureka Seven anime back then I was quite happy, but it wasn’t a satisfying experience for me at all.
      I don’t think they will work on it, maybe the manga has a more likeable end, anyway thank you for your comment and opinion ^^

  2. bill

    omg it even says in the first one that the corlalians leave earth and renton and eureka go with the corolians thats why link and the other kids arent with them. now that i watch it again i cant believe how well the two series are connected and how much it actually makes sense. you guys just couldnt understand the dimension and time traveling just because renton kinda turned into a dick didnt ruin the show and Ao was a true hero. renton lost a child and couldnt save eureka and figured the best thing to do would be to erase the scubs from history even eureka but Ao saves everyone in the end an lives thats all he cared about making sure his mother was safe and happy im sure any one of you guys would of done the same thing the ending was excellent and the story again i didnt think with all the time traveling it would make sense but it really did it was perfect

  3. bill

    spoilers how can you say that this series ruined e7. e7 ends with renton saving eureka and this series says that the scub travel through the gates to other dimensions and because renton and eureka try to have a baby and it dies because the baby turns to stone they follow through the dimensions to go to a time or place that there new baby has a chance to live. renton acts like hollond because his first kid dies and his second kid might die. this story was so much better and if you can follow the time travel this series is better then the first you guys are nuts

  4. selet

    I read “Ao was boring” in the first p post and literally started laughing. major understatement. I personally couldn’t get past episode six because everything was boring about it.

    I skipped to the last few episodes and then read about the rest on their wikia. I only wanted to know how eureka and renton ended up at that point. Not my best idea but oh well. I went back and watched the rest after because the wikia said eureka appeared a lot more.

    Ao series RUINED the end scene on the originalfor me.. I loved how they left it originally a nirvash allowed them Yupp return to their planet too live.. But if the way Ao ended was the correct way, it means they were actually sent back there by Ao…

    Yes, I realize that I over thought this, but out still ruined it for me (I know that at the end of the original that it showed renton on the clothes as a kid, I still think this way)

    my biggest problem is the generic ending of Ao. Through the whole series Ao was depicted as a self absorbed kid. But at the end, mere seconds after he was fighting his dad for his own selfish reasons, hew becomes selfless and sacrifices himself.. The hell? And at that, eureka and renton had their characters developed on the original so that they would never willingly let anyone sacrifice themselves for their sakes, but they both walked away and let Ao, their own son!, sacrifice himself for them. All I gotta say is I hope that on the supposed new series this year, no more good parts are ruined..and I won’t say I won’t watch it to keep the goods thoughts alive, I’m too stubborn and I like to know what will happen next.

    • wieselhead

      Thx for your opinion.

      Ah yeah I also needed two attempts to finish the show.
      Later I rewatched most of the episodes to get a better understanding, which partially helped in rising my first impression.
      But in face of the rushed half assed end, it was totally in vain for me. Too bad that they kind of betrayed the idea of the first show.
      Hell they even didn’t even bother to do give the new characters a good end, Im really sadabout this kind of end.

  5. FunkEater

    I had a huge shit moment when Renton started saying stuff like they, as adults, had to be responsible for their decisions and shit. It’s like they didn’t even learn from the mistakes of Holland, Dewey, and everyone. The way they made this sequel, it’s like Renton and Eureka didn’t even go through the stuff they did as kids. The whole point of Eureka Seven was for them to grow up and become good adults but history repeats itself and a huge price is paid by yet another kid whose only fault was being born. As boring as this sounds, I would’ve preferred a short OVA with everyone all grown up and now leading peaceful lives, just so I wouldn’t feel like everything they went through was a waste. And lastly, WHERE IS MAETER, MAURICE, AND LINCK??? I’m not fans of them but it would’ve been real cool if they were added to the plot somehow. I mean, they are technically Eureka and Renton’s kids.

    • wieselhead

      Yeah it’s just sad that everything turned out like that in the end.
      They ruined the old show partially and also messed up the sequel.

      I would have rather seen something with the old characters in their world
      instead of this dimension hopping crap.

      They erased Eureka’s kids 🙁

  6. Mochan

    This was a totally lousy series, the first Eureka Seven was very good in an Evangelion-sort of way. This mess of a plothole show was a huge, huge disappointment.

    I also can’t get over how Renton grew up to become HOLLAND of all people. What the heck? I guess Tomoki Kyoda (the director for both series) has a huge mancrush on Keiji Fujiwara (Holland and Old Man Renton’s VA).

    • wieselhead

      Unfortunately it was like that, not the kind of sequel I want to see again 🙁

      Ahaha indeed, maybe because he was something like Renton’s father in the show.
      Well, it was odd that Renton spoke like Holland, but the voice is without a doubt very cool.

  7. hoshiko

    Sometimes sequels do that to the original series. Sucks a lot. They sort of ruin our overall perception of the series. Maybe that’s why sometimes I am reluctant to watch sequels, although I always watch sequels to my favorite series. Oh, what am I doing to myself! Lol.

    I haven’t watch Eureka Seven yet. Seeing that you’re watching it 3 times already, I’m getting the nudge.

    • wieselhead

      Bad sequels often leave a bad impression, but sometimes sequels can be even better.
      I watch sequels to know how the stories go on or to see beloved characters again.
      Sometimes the story won’t be continued like you have expected, but as long as it keeps the spirit of old seasons it’s ok for me.

      The problem with Eureka Seven AO is that it didn’t end it’s story properly.

      Maybe you’ll like it, I think its an awesome show ^^

  8. Aya

    I forgot about these .. It’s been a while since the first Eureka seven although seems not really awesome as the first one I will give it a shot

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