I’m Standing on a Million Lives Episode #1 Review
After a month break, it’s time to finally get another review out. This time around we will be reviewing a new anime called I’m Standing on a Million Lives. Episode 1 and 2 are available on Crunchyroll.
The Plot: Not too much is known of the plot up to this point. At least 3 kids who all attend the same school, Yusuke Yotsuya, Iu Shindo and Kusue Hakozaki, are all teleported to a video game world. Admittedly, I have not watched to many shows from this genre of anime. However, one thing that makes it seem different, to me anyway, is the fact the characters can leave the video game world and than return back to said world at later points. Though, it does not appear they get to chose when to warp back between each world. Once a player arrives in the video game world, I am not sure if the world is named yet or not, they are greeted by a strange avatar that grants them their quest. A neat aspect to the team dynamic is the players can die as much as they want with no consequence. That is, as long as at least one party member is currently alive. If they all die before the other players can respond, they stay dead. It is not yet fully revealed if this means they die in the real world. The players seem to be acting as if they would though.
Shindo: First up is Shindo. Technically not the main character, she is still the first of the 3 to arrive in the video game world. In the real world she is considered the total package. The guys find her attractive. She receives good grades. She’s even athletic. In the video game world she assumes the role of a wizard blessed with the elemental powers of wind.
Hakozaki: Hakozaki is not a complete polar opposite of Shindo, even if she appears so on the surface. She is tasked with being the sword wielding warrior. However, she lacks the confidence to be the fearsome brute the group needs her to be. She has a lot to learn and room to grow before she becomes the hero of this story. I’m sure her character will undergo some growth as the series develops but the jury is still out on whether she can reach that status or not.
Yotsuya: Yotsuya is the main character. He is uninspired to say the least. He cannot envision a future for himself. Instead, he would just prefer to play video games. As you can imagine, getting transported to a virtual reality is almost a dream come true. He is told once he finishes his missions he can go home. I’m not convinced he even wants to return home to Tokyo. Yotsuya is not very likable as a character. Though he seems to be a quick thinker and group player. Despite owning the occupation of farmer (one of the weaker titles), he has already carried his weight up to this point.
The World: Animes like this are always fun for this section. The story is divided into 2 locations. The first one seems to be a plain Jane interpretation of Tokyo. The second one is a brand new mystical video game dimension. So far, it has mythical creatures like sea beast and trolls, magic, and good old fashion towns and villages. I’m not sure if anything is named yet. Every player is assigned a title and than a status bar full of typical RPG stats. The players can summon weapons (and I assume other elements as the show continues) at will. I’m under the impression that whenever a player arrives in the world they are greeted by the same avatar (or Game Master as he is referred) and tasked with building a team and completing quests.
Recap: Though I am not overly familiar with the genre, this seems like a perfectly fine jumping in point for fans or newcomers of the genre alike.
Action: Not over dependent on action up to this point. The first scene is pretty bloody all things considered which, to me, implies there could be plenty of blood and violence in future episodes.
Romance: Who knows? There’s nothing overly hinting at romance at this point in time. I think Yotsuya at least has a crush on Shindo. Not confirmed explicitly though.
Plot: I don’t have a definitive opinion on the plot. It is plenty fine enough to carry this kind of story and that is probably good enough.
Characters: Despite my earlier comments, the characters here are fine. They are not in the same class as many of the animes I have watched. However, they just formed a squad and most of them lack charisma but they have a certain charm. Not an elite cast by any means, but still enjoyable in their own right.
The World: The worlds in animes like this are so important. This world seems to have some nice tricks thanks to the digital nature of it. One example being the data logs scattered throughout the world. If the show keeps doing cool stuff with their design space, I will like this world a lot. As of now, it is fine.
Verdict: This show seems to be a pretty surface level anime packed with room for plenty of potential.
Score: I’m going to sound really harsh here. I was going to go 6 out of 10, but I think I’ll just say 7 out of 10. Episode 1 did not blow me away like some Episode 1’s I’ve seen. It did do enough to get me invested in some of the character’s well being and motivate me to look forward to the coming episodes. This is a new anime. I may try to watch it weekly or so as they air and revisit it down the road here on the blog. Who knows?
I Mean You No Farm? I have to wonder if Yotsuya was only given the title farmer to make him weak at the start or maybe even just for comedic effect. Could this job have secret abilities or top notch skills he will discover in later episodes? Seems like a pretty big plot point to just do for a gag or to kneecap the main character at the start of the story.
Life is But a Stream. In the real world Yotsuya bumps into a table outside where a girl is streaming, inadvertently messing up her angle. She makes some comments that I cannot quite remember off the top of my head. I just wonder if this girl or streaming will come into play. The camera and the show itself took some time away from Yotsuya and the plot as a whole to show us this girl, though her face was not revealed if I recall right. She could be a throw away scene or important to the story.