Music was outlawed to protect humanity from the D2s, although not everyone is willing to live like this. After an accident involving the D2s, Takt and Anna travel across America with Destiny, a Musicart that has inhabited Cosette.
Takt Op. Destiny (Season One)
What did you watch?
I had not planned on watching Takt Op. Destiny at all. It hadn’t made it onto my to-watch list before the start of the Fall 2021 season, so how did this happen? Well, I got caught up in a bit of banter on Twitter where people were talking about the first episode. I had a scheduling issue with a couple of shows I was originally looking at so figured I’d jump in and see how things went. After the first episode, it looked like I was onto a winner. It had post-apocalyptic elements, it didn’t hit you with an exposition dump, and had some nice action. What could go wrong? What indeed?
Takt, Anna, and Destiny were travelling across America through the wasteland that was under the control of a race that arrived on Earth via some black meteorites. Music seemed to enrage them and drive them to attack which is why it had been outlawed. Takt, however, was the son of a gifted conductor and couldn’t help but play the piano if he saw one. Luckily, he had Destiny with him. She was a Musicart, gifted with incredible speed and power. They were humanities only hopes of defeating the D2s.
As they travelled across the country, they met different people in different places and did different things… although not too different. It also was surprisingly un-apocalyptic. How exactly had the D2s impacted life on Earth and were they really that dangerous? Of course, there was also the Symphonica who were responsible for using the Musicarts to fight the D2s and keep everyone safe. Any guesses how this might develop?
What did you think?
Things started so well. The first episode was quirky and had some fun interactions between the characters. The animation was nice and it teased you by not revealing too much. After that, it rapidly went downhill. For the next three episodes, it took us back to before Cosette became Destiny and proceeded to pile steaming piles of exposition on us. There was one nice moment at the end of the second episode, but the series took a steady downward projectile from that point on.
By the end of the season, I had completely given up. For a show that seems to be about music or the lack thereof in a post-apocalyptic setting, there wasn’t any music other than a bit of background music. Even the Conductors seemed to be entirely pointless when it came to the battles as the Musicarts were more than capable on their own. The characters were flat and boring, there was no emotional connection for me. I did not like this series and had I not been reviewing it, I would have walked away at episode three without a worry.
What was your favourite moment?
In the first episode, there was a scene in a diner, which was having a hard time running due to the D2s, which would be the last time any business seemed to struggle due to the D2s in the series. Takt and Destiny were such a weird mix and their drivers differed so much that it made for some interesting conversations and conflict. Eventually, Destiny and Takt came to a compromise and it all went wrong.
After a little rest, they tried again and this time were victorious. The initial fight was spectacular and after the diner scene, I believed that the series had some great potential. Failing to realise that potential is one of the reasons that I really lost interest.
What was your least favourite moment?
The characters repeatedly doing random stuff because the “plot” demanded it was infuriating and not least because the actual plot was rubbish. To make matters worse, the main antagonist behind everything had such a terrible reason for doing what he was doing that it all seemed to pile on top of each other to deliver a series that didn’t live up to the hype and failed to create an emotional connection.
It really was boring and even the fights, as nicely animated as some of them were, didn’t have any stakes. At no point did it feel like things would be terrible if they lost. The D2s were terrible monsters too who would stand around and wait for the Musicarts to attack them. Basically, I could almost pick any moment from the last eleven episodes, but the scene with Sagan in the last episode really takes the cake.
Who was your favourite character?
It has to be Titan, Lenny’s Musicart because I think she was criminally underused and had far more potential than most of the other characters. She didn’t get much development until it was needed to attempt to make people suddenly care about the outcome of a fight, but it felt shoehorned in at the last second. She deserved better. Especially in the last fight where she was bizarrely dragged off set to make way for Destiny and Takt. There were a lot of really dumb decisions made for the sake of plot!
Who was your least favourite character?
I could easily say Sagan or Schindler as they were terrible villains. Both were obviously villains from the start and they made Bond villains look reasonably clever. Too often, they would just walk away when they were seconds from victory. However, neither of these guys compare to the protagonist – Takt Asahina. Takt was the exact same person at the end of the series as he was at the beginning. We saw no development at all and this ended up being a road trip which is the least subtle way of showing that the character has gone on a journey. Even then, he was the same grumpy annoying idiot that he had always been.
Would you like some more?
Luckily, this appears to be it for Takt Op. Destiny unless you want to play the upcoming gacha game where you can collect Musicarts and pretend that you are Takt Asahina. I, for one, will not be touching it with a barge pole. There aren’t many series that I rate below this one. I did not enjoy myself!
What have you learnt?
Usually, I go off the cover image and the brief description, adding shows to my to-watch list ahead of the coming season. Oftentimes, I’ll go through the list a couple of times so it was a surprise when I saw the reactions from the first episode. It was being described as post-apocalyptic with musical magical girls fighting aliens. That sounds like it should have been fun if nothing else.
Looking back at the season now, I can tell you that it was grossly misrepresented. This is a slice of life road trip anime with the occasional monster. One of the things that you need to remember with marketing your story is that you need to do it right. There’s no point trying to pull in a bigger audience by exaggerating one aspect because if it isn’t there, you will get bad reviews. Not living up to expectations is probably one of the worst things you can do.
It doesn’t matter what you’re selling, if it doesn’t do what you say it does, people will not be happy. It might be the best thing in the world from another point of view, but those aren’t the people that will discover it because they’re looking for something you’re not advertising. Ironically, telling the truth is a surprisingly important part of marketing!
Other Posts in the Series
- Season One
- Episode 1 – Conduct -Creed-
- Episode 2 – Music -Reincarnation-
- Episode 3 – Awakening -Journey-
- Episode 4 – Let the Performance Begin -Showtime-
- Episode 5 – Equitation -Valkyrie-
- Episode 6 – Sunrise -Rooster-
- Episode 7 – Truth -Noise-
- Episode 8 – Destiny -Cosette-
- Episode 9 – Family -Eroica-
- Episode 10 – Master and Pupil -Lenny-
- Episode 11 – Preparing for Battle -Orpheus-
- Episode 12 – Takt -Hope-