Things go downhill, fast.
Everything goes wrong when the CCG strikes.
The lackluster animation is back. It never left, but now it becomes even more obvious. This animation team really doesn’t do a good job with fight scenes at all, huh! So, I’ve gone over the poor quality of animation before, but I think this time we should discuss exactly what that does in this case. Or rather, what it takes away from what could be potentially good.
All fight scenes are supposed to convey something- either a one-up of strategy, a clash of ideals, a race for survival, multiple things. In this case, what it’s best supposed to convey is a sense of chaos. Once the CCG attacks what was supposed to be a happy occasion, everyone is split off. Even the CCG itself is split off, between those working under Furuta and his motives, and those who are going against him. What results is a cluster of panic; people trying to survive on all sides, and allies fighting against former allies.
Some of those enemies are terrifying. Roma, the leader of the clowns, is supposed to be comedic in appearance, but what she transforms into is gruesome despite how cartoonish it looks. She isn’t a ghoul to be taken lightly, but the very slow pacing in the action sequences, along with long pauses between her movements, make her look slow. She may be a titan, but slowing things down make her look clumsy, instead of being a gargantuan, hulking monster that Urie has to fight off.
The same also goes for Rio. Rio is frightening in appearance and isn’t able to communicate properly either. He does move in a very distinctly stilted manner, but that also comes off as awkward thanks to the animation, and not in the sense of being unnatural. As such, the fight back by Urie and Kuroiwa feel less like a dynamic struggle as the manga showed it, and more along the lines of just biding time, and stepping out of the way of attacks.
What causes disaster, in the end, is Kaneki losing himself in trying to protect Touka, but even that feels so much less dynamic because all we get are vague shots of the city being destroyed, instead of a tangible sense of destruction.
This series really needed a better animation team, by far. A poorly choreographed fight is an easy way for a series to lose tension, and this is a perfect example of it.