RWBY - The Shining Beacon, The First Step, and The Emerald Forest

The Shining Beacon
Jesus Christ

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So, as the chibis would indicate, this is a comedy episode. There's no action scene, and it's about half the length of the previous. The focus here is on establishing character, mainly the rest of the titular RWBY. Yang here is the doting big sister, affectionate and protective but too cool to hang around babysitting. I think I like her most of all the heroes shown so far. She's a lot more natural and believable than the rest of the anime archetypes in the cast. Her design is exceptional too, with the firey hair getting her gimmick across, but the cool leather jacket keeping it grounded and adding a nice muted Earth tone.

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The next member of The Breakfast Club is Weiss Schnee, the princess. Heiress, actually, of the richest and least ethical evil magic powder company in the world. Right now, she is the dictionary definition of spoiled rich girl: bitchy and ignorant. That makes her the perfect foil to the last teenager with attitude -

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Blake Belladonna. Blake doesn't get much characterization here other than caring about worker's rights. A total buzzkill, basically. I really do not like Weiss and Blake's designs, and they both have the same problem. The colours are blown way the fuck out. Blake's hair and corset are featureless voids, and Weiss is so white she thinks mayonaisse is too spicy. The colour theming is obvious enough, you don't need to literally make them completely monochrome, especially when you've cranked the bloom up to "2006 FPS". At least Weiss gets the splash of red, unlike poor Blake. Maybe after this season they'll go on the Unity asset store and find better shaders?

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And there's also this fuck but I refuse to talk about him. Overall, the episode was cheesey, but not terrible. Some lines were way too cliche for my liking - "Not many people have an appreciation for the classics these days" - but there were a few good jokes. Pic related is the best exchange in the episode.
"It's also a customizable high-impact sniper rifle."
"A what?"
"It's also a gun."
Ruby still manages to be charming despite her VA constantly choking on gumdrops, and I didn't hate the episode. Except the part with the chibis, which I hated.

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So after the beginning of the two-parter was comedic character fluff, the next episode is more comedic character fluff. Fine, I guess, but I don't know why this was broken up into two. Did they just release whatever they had done every week? I'll have to look into the actual distribution method for this show.
Everyone falls into their roles pretty clearly. Ruby is still sickeningly sweet, Yang still has Ruby's best interest at heart despite her actions, Weiss is still a bitch and Blake is still less fun than a sociology student's Twitter feed. Not ba-

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-aaaaaah fuck.
I genuinely cannot tell what the fuck this show is trying to be. Sometimes it's a JRPG cutscene, sometimes it's a YA novel targetting the Harry Potter audience and sometimes it's actual Looney Tunes bullshit. I wouldn't mind any of these in isolation, but the back and forth is giving me whiplash. This was a really sweet scene, establishing Ruby's idealism in contrast to Blake's "hard truths" philosophy, and then this shit happens. It didn't ruin the episode, but it sure ended on a sour note.
The First Step

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Now they're introducing more new assholes. This lady, a Chinese[?] guy and a really obnoxious pink hair. I had a pic of the other two but I don't like them. Plus I had to post this one. Apparently RWBY has become Homestar Runner now and I honestly can't complain.

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But all that bullshit was just pre-amble to the POTENTIALLY LETHAL TRAINING SEQUENCE WOW
They go full Naruto here, complete with the hopping on trees bullshit. As usual, everything looks a million times better during an action sequence, not just the character animation but the cinematography and overall polish. It's all generic shonen but it's not bad generic shonen. I've even stopped hating Ruby's voice, though I'm not sure if it's the VA getting better or if I just have Stockholm Syndrome.

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We also get a sneak peak at the monsters, which are the bad guys that Kamen Rider beats up to fill time. I don't have any strong feelings about the designs one way or another. These fucks show up in every dungeon and spooky forest and they give decent XP so why complain?

The Emerald Forest
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And finally we're in a proper fight scene. Also fuck YouTube and I'm not going back to take that screenshot again. What a goddamn awful service I cannot believe they're still successful as a video streaming site when they block your fucking video stream with pop ups from 1998
Anyways, Yang is the shit and it's a joy to see her in motion. She has the cartridges from Nanoha Season 2 so she jets around at a million miles per hour punching explosions at skeleton bears. If you're going to watch any part of RWBY, you watch this.

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The main narrative thrust behind all this senseless violence is that the characters have to partner up to fight. As you'd expect from those kooky kids, they're great in a fight, but not great with each other haha! Weiss and Ruby continue to piss each other off, but just about everyone is struggling here. I don't want to keep alluding to early Naruto but I swear they're doing it on purpose.

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The B-team come in to provide some exposition about midichlorians or some shit and fight this yin-yang snake. This fight has especially good choreography, contrasting the straightforward aggressive motion of the serpent with the smooth, calculated kung-fu bullshit of what's his name, culminating in snake grinding. That's three of the four literally whos shown off, counting puke boy and cereal box, and I'm loathe to show the pink hair because she's awful. Still, this was a really entertaining episode despite her. Things have gone full Advent Children at this point - Yang is basically blonde Tifa - and that's really all I can hope for.
yeah the fight scenes are the highlight of RWBY. they're charming and pretty good, if amateur. yang's shit is great, i agree.

get used to the mood whiplash between scenes. that happens a lot.
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You havent even seen the worst episodes yet

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