Giant Beasts of Ars (Season One)

Giant Beasts of Ars Title

Humans have been fighting giant beasts that ravage the lands and then plundering their corpses for resources. Those leading the fight are known as paladins who join with a mage to utilize their uncontrollable powers!

Giant Beasts of Ars (Season One)

What did you watch?

As much as I love Isekai, sometimes, I just want to dive into a fantasy world without all the explanations coming at me from someone who’s only just arrived there. Giant Beasts of Ars looked like an intriguing fantasy story and not least because of the aforementioned giant beasts. As you may already know, I love B-list horror and giant beasts are one of my favourite sub-genres in that category. So, on paper, this series ticked all the boxes before I started watching. So, let’s find out if it lived up to those expectations. There will be spoilers beyond this point.

Giant Beasts of Ars Episode 2 Jiro drunk

What happened?

Jiro is a paladin, however, his mage died leaving his a disgruntled and broken man. He turned to booze and only joined the giant beast hunts when he ran out of money to pay for his drinks. One night, while draining his bottle, he encountered a mysterious girl who climbed onto his ship. She apologised and quickly leapt away, bouncing between ships. Some soldiers appeared moments later, asking him if he saw a girl. He did and he told them so. He didn’t see why it concerned him, anyhow. A little later, he was drawn to a sudden release of power.

He found the girl standing on a dock nearby, glowing with magical power. If he didn’t do something quickly, she would have exploded and likely taken the whole town with her. He ran to her aid and dived into the water with her. There, he kissed her on the forehead making a contract between them. She merged with him, allowing him to use her powers to defeat a strange giant beast that had suddenly appeared. Its glowing red eyes were unlike anything Jiro had seen before. Would they be able to defeat it or was the city doomed?

Giant Beasts of Ars Episode 2 Jiro

What did you think?

This series started off fairly well, although it was a little heavy on the tropes. Anyone familiar with fantasy stories would be able to sit there and list off a bunch without having seen it and they would probably all be in it. Then, as the series went on it slowly got worse and worse. The premise was interesting and made it worthwhile continuing, but the characters were criminally underdeveloped and the story was rushed. A lot happened in most episodes, but even so, it was surprisingly boring. Then, when you get to the end of the season, it left things on a massive cliffhanger. Does that mean a second season is coming? I’m not sure, and I’m finding it hard to care.

Giant Beasts of Ars Episode 7 Kumi

What was your favourite moment?

I’m struggling to come up with anything that really stood out. You’d think in a show about people fighting giant beasts with magical weapons, there should have been some outstanding fights, but they too were incredibly lacklustre. So, I’m going to go with the moment that Jiro and Kumi were facing Mezami, the man responsible for Kumi’s existence and he revealed that he too had two red glowing eyes. What were they going to do against someone so powerful (because he was very similar to the giant beasts… just smaller…)?

Anyhow, Kumi got mad and was able to control the humanoid giant beast that Mezami had captured behind some sort of magical forcefield. Well, Kumi instructed it to reach through the forcefield which it did without any difficulty, grab Mezami and eat him. All while, Jiro stared on in wonder. It was as bizarre as it sounds and that sadly was a fairly common problem with this series. Lots of it just didn’t make sense.

Giant Beasts of Ars Episode 10 Mezami being eaten

What was your least favourite moment?

Sadly, there are a lot more things I could list here, but I’m going to focus on a couple of things. Firstly, Jiro had a metal ship that appeared to hover above the ground and then it just started flying everywhere. This made the time they were stuck at the therianthrope village all the more puzzling. Flooding meant they couldn’t continue in their flying ship… Yeah, flooding.

Then, we had the giant beasts with their glowing red eyes. It made them look a little more sinister, but it also turned out to be their weak spot so it was easy for Jiro to drive his magically embued spear into the eye and kill it with one hit. That ruined every fight going forward and basically made the giant beasts a bizarre sideshow that never really got going.

Giant Beasts of Ars Episode 4 Jiro facing giant beast with red eye

Who was your favourite character?

From a purely design standpoint, I’m a big fan of Romana and Tsurugi. I did find it rather hilarious that during Romana’s five-year flashback, she was wearing the exact same clothes. She was in a war zone treating injured soldiers and still managed to preserve her dress. Did they think we wouldn’t recognise her without the dress? She was fairly distinct for other reasons and not least those two big ears…

Otherwise, no one really developed as a character. We learnt little bits about everyone but none of it pulled you in. I felt nothing for any of them and that’s a big shame. Even just following the tropes, they should have been able to give me someone to latch onto.

Giant Beasts of Ars Episode 11 Romana and Jiro

Who was your least favourite character?

So, Myaa wasn’t a bad character exactly, but there was so much that they never revealed about her. Every village they seemed to visit had another character just like her but with a different animal on her head. It turned out that there were all the same person split into a number of versions to ensure some great event happens. Once again, they didn’t give us enough. It was so rushed that this season felt like it should have been twice as long to cover everything they had and do it justice. I’m not sure if that would have made it better, but at least we would understand more.

Giant Beasts of Ars Episode 1 Myaa

Would you like some more?

I don’t like to walk away from a story once I’ve started it and there have been very few occasions where I have. In this instance, I think I would probably watch another season because the world is fairly interesting and I’d like to know what on earth is going on with those giant cuboid spaceships that appeared at the end of the season. I wouldn’t say it was a bad series, but it certainly wasted a lot of potential by trying to cram too much into too short a period of time.

Giant Beasts of Ars Episode 7 Meran and Romana

What have you learnt?

There were some points in this series that made me think about another series and unfortunately for Giant Beasts of Ars, it is far superior. That series is Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation. In Mushoku Tensei they were stuck in the beast village for a period of time because of heavy rains and flooding, however, in Mushoku there was a reason for it and it used that time to show us the characters growing and changing. Giant Beasts of Ars forced them into the same problem and then didn’t really do anything with it.

The point I’m trying to make is that you can use similar scenarios and get a very different result. Funnily enough, that makes watching shows that aren’t as good worth your time. Too often, I will be watching or reading something and when it’s not working I start to think how I would change it. If you’re lucky enough to have a similar scene in another series that does work it can help you highlight why it worked. Then, you can apply those lessons to your own work. There’s always something to learn from every experience.

Giant Beasts of Ars Episode 12 Kumi takes control

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  1. Oh, I had high hopes for this series, I was planning to try it out later this week. I might put this one on my watch later list. Thanks for the review! Your posts really help me prioritize my anime watching time.

    • Yeah, me too. So much promise but it just rushed everything. I’m glad I’m helping you to focus you lists.

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