For day two of summer anime first impressions (i.e. episode 1 through 3), let’s take a look at Classroom Crisis. This is the first full series anime being made by the production company Lay-duce (tied to Aniplex, it appears). How much promise does this sci-fi anime hold?
The focus for this story is actually pretty interesting. The setting is on (terraformed) Mars–and more specifically, a corporate-run academy that includes a special class of brainy students developing new rocket engines. Gotta go fast! Formula racing has gotten a lot cooler now that it’s in outer space, and it’s up to these kids to design and build the speediest space ship ever. That more or less covers the classroom part of the story–now what about the crisis?
Enter the transfer student Nagisa Kiryuu. The brother of the company’s CEO, Nagisa is placed in charge of the research division that includes the eponymous classroom, tasked to steer their costly projects out of the red. This means business–and it seems Nagisa is just the cold-hearted and steel-eyed kid for the job. The classroom immediately gets most of its funding cut, thus placing Nagisa in an antagonistic role against the “Mighty Ducks” of the story. (Only instead of underdog ice hockey players, they’re underdog rocket scientists.)
Hey, Mighty Ducks is just what came to mind, okay? It’s a more fitting comparison than I think I’m getting credit for. The closest thing to a protagonist for this story is the young teacher Kaito Sera, who is basically a doofus “fighting spirit!” version of Emilio Estevez. And as for the students of the class… well, I can’t think of anything to say about them. It’s been three episodes, but I can’t bring myself to care about any of them yet. The series is a slow-burner though, so it might just take some time? Or perhaps it’s better to just think of the group as a whole as the main character?
Whatever the case may be, my general feeling for this series so far can be summed up: “Interesting premise. It’s something kind of different, what with its focus on the business side behind space travel and all the corporate politics such an environment entails. I think it’s technically good? It’s a boring good though.”
The production values are decent, but I can’t think of anything specific that’s noteworthy or of particular interest. And though the story does stand out for being a bit more grounded in realism for its sci-fi than is typical (e.g. they’re building space ships, not gundams), nothing about it has really grabbed me. I’ll stick with it for now, but if things don’t pick up soon (or at least become a bit less “by-the-numbers”), I’ll probably end up dropping this one.