English Dub Review: Dances With The Dragons “Guillotine of Spiders – Time of Snakes”

Wait, did the writers go on strike or something?

Overview (Spoilers)

The final chess move must be countered. Remedias/Zulu left his two warheads in the care of Great Magatsushiki, who will launch them if not stopped by noon. These warheads won’t just kill everyone on Razel Island, it will kill them slowly and torturously. Fortunately, we have G&G and the Largonkin company on the case… because Dragon’s Fang and the police couldn’t be bothered to help, I guess. Why have a military when you have private contractors and bounty hunters that are better equipped and more capable? Wow, didn’t see that social commentary coming…

The gang fight their way up the clock tower, facing a variety of outlandish magatsushiki along the way. They finally face against the green armored one, and he’s formidable to say the least. He seems to have been summoned using the sacrifice of a human and a spider, as he sprouts a bunch of arms with their own weapons. He’s not too shabby a swordsman either. At least, that’s what they’re saying. While they stand around sword-locked with him long enough to have a full conversation without worrying about a counter-attack. Gaiyus figures out a way to stop him, though. Using fire magic and Largonkin’s cigars, he spreads smoke in the area. The Magatsushiki, being part spider, can’t filter toxins out of the air very effectively. He chokes on the smoke, giving the team the opportunity to shred his face.

It’s time for the next boss battle… well, except that the writers wanted to take a moment to drive the plot home. In case you haven’t figured it out yet, Zulu is actually Remedias, and he ate his girlfriend over there in order to engineer his revenge. Got that plot point? Great, because we rejoin the boss battle, already in progress. This one had his body made from a snake, so he uses poison attacks, and teleports by sloughing off his skin. The actual explanation by Gaiyus is much more complicated, but it boils down to that. The battle heats up, but too late. The Magatsushiki launches the warhead at Razel Island.

The Warhead Detonates!
Courtesy: Funimation

G&G don wings and fly for the island, hoping to stop it from launching. The magatsushiki doesn’t make it easy, but now that they know his tricks, Gaiyus uses a giant, island-sized fire blast to stop him and his warhead in its tracks. But, remember! There were TWO warheads! The second one launches for the island, and is about to ignite when a mysterious party blasts it out of the sky as well. Who is that mysterious mage?

Our Take

Wow, this was a waste. Third from the last episode, set up as a huge battle, should be entertaining. Isn’t. The fights aren’t fights. They’re primarily a bunch of people standing around while Gaiyus explains stuff. Again, the biggest problem with this show is that things go unexplained until the red-haired jerk decides he wants to sound intelligent. He then spouts off a bunch of junk that makes little to no sense unless you sit and interpret for a while. All this to make the main character seem smart when he isn’t.

How is he not smart? That island-sized blast? He could have used that as soon as the warhead launched, taking the baddie and the warhead out before there were any problems. They were at the top of the clock tower. No fallout, no collateral that hadn’t already happened. Instead, they decided to try and out-fly the warhead, leaving themselves vulnerable. It’s dumb.

Further, the choice to interrupt the last magatsushiki battle with a flashback explanation showed just how dumb the writing is. We don’t get to see what seemed like a cool fight to instead see the information we already figured out a long time ago. This was a transparent attempt to save budget. Instead of showing a complicated and expensive to animate battle, they gave us a low-detail, easy to animate talking scene. They then tried to transition back in by giving us a summary of what we missed. More talking. It’s actually a bit frustrating.

Full disclosure: the stream I had was extremely laggy, and at times, I couldn’t tell whether the animation was bad, or if the stream was to blame. I reloaded a couple times, buffered as much as possible, and would get a few seconds of great stream.

The animation was still garbage. Nothing is drawn the same way twice. Lots of obviously cycled animations. Characters perform single actions at a time. As in, they can’t talk and cast a spell at the same time. Often times, they will do an action, freeze for a full second, then do another action. In the middle of a fight. The quality of the animation is janky, even when I do get good stream. At least the camera angles are dynamic.

Oh, and the voice acting is crap, but you already knew that.

Score

Summary

Terribly written, cheaply animated, poorly voiced. This was a waste of my time. I give it two magical warheads out of ten.

2.0/10

Marshall Daley

One part best-friend/philosopher, one part creepy mad scientist. Shaken, and sprinkled with geeky factoids, quirky humor, and a major case of skepticism towards the world and you might just find a cocktail that changes the way you see... Everything!

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