GATE is one of the shows I’ve been looking forward to most since it was announced, this setting is one I’ve always thought is amazing and yet one I feel like I’ve never actually seen in anything. Just knowing it was exactly that made me very hyped up about trying this out. Now after 2 episodes, does it live up to it?
Well, yes and no. It’s definitely fun, exciting, and hitting the right spots in terms of the asymmetrical battles I was hoping for, but we’re probably going to slowly build up a harem, there’s a little bit of a pacing issue (we already have translation books printed for a place we got to a day ago?), and there’s a lot of inconsistencies (“I just killed 130,000 of your countrymen who were defending you against our invasion, but here’s a snack” and being accepted as lovely people without question by the natives). This is a series with a lot of flaws but this unique setting and this so far likable main cast are doing a lot for it. I also really like this mix of fun lightheartedness with the serious action stuff – it reminds me a lot in many ways of Library Wars which is a fantastic fucking series so bringing those feelings back to me even if not entirely makes me feel good about watching this. The art and such is also pretty great aside some of the noses, but it looks nice for the most part.
I really like the OP, it gets across a lot of the stuff the show is about and introduces the most main members of the cast along with some side members in the main group. The ED however feels both boring and lame, it’s ugly to look at, its boring to watch, and the song kind of sucks. I’m not sure what they were going for with this disco-humvee thing but I don’t really like it.
My major issue so far – and one I was worried about from the show descriptions – is that it portrays the US as evil, warmongering, and with a greed fueled intent to invade this other world and take it as their own. Now, sure, that’s fine because I can’t really say it’s not at least somewhat believable. The problem though is that the Japanese from the very first episode have done FAR WORSE and are already continuing that – yet the series is treating Japan like the savior of this other world rather than being aware of what the fuck it’s doing. They’re fighting off an “evil king” or clearly will be, they’re defending it from the “evil Americans” from exploiting it and taking it as their own…all while if you pay attention especially to the press conference in episode 1 just a week or two after the gate shows up the prime minister outright claims the entire other world as Japanese territory then orders the JSDF to actively invade and occupy it, taking a place by force, slaughtering people like crazy, and of course destroying the land and wildlife as well. How can a show that has the old imperialistic terrible historically war-crime-filled Japanese who are acting even worse than Putin over Crimea as the protagonists try making the US look bad for wanting the same things and being LESS terrible about getting them?
Japan’s first reaction was “WE OWN THAT LAND, IT IS OURS, JSDF GO TAKE IT BACK” once they learned of this other world, yet the anti-US sentiment in here is thick when all we’re doing is supporting the Japanese in their endeavor. It’s kind of disgusting and upsetting any time it comes up, especially because all that Japan side of it NEVER GETS SHOWN AS A BAD THING. They are treated as peace loving saviors who are “totally not invading” who just rolled into another world – another nation – brutally slaughtered over 130,000 people who were simply defending their land and world, and who are simply treating the place as if it was theirs from the start. Japan in this show is a brutal invading and occupational force and they’re treated like angels in the narrative. It’s like the author of these LNs isn’t even hiding the fact he wants the imperialistic incredibly violent Japan back from history (not surprising, as far as xenophobia and anti-US sentiment goes, the JSDF and southern Japan are ranked pretty equally in the most hateful especially with the older aged crowd in both), yet hilariously enough the way he shows this is by having Japan go and just tear apart people way less equipped who have no way of fighting back or defending themselves who are all doing nothing but trying to force invaders out as they just take land as their own after killing more and more. He’s blind to the hypocrisy of his own insane anti-american pro-empire-of-japan stance on the world. It feels like some kind of post-war “history is written by the victors” propaganda that we’re reading from the future of the story’s world.
I mean even the idea that this is a retaliatory effort after being attacked first is hilariously inaccurate. Japan already closed the gate off entirely – the other side would never get through again, they were not a threat. Plus what kind of ‘retaliation’ is ‘take it all over’?
If it pushes too much of this bullshit agenda I’m sad to say the show will suffer highly for it – most of the other stuff about this is fantastic or easy to forgive EXCEPT that and the retardedly “I’m evil and bad” evil bad king. Thing is, I’m almost certain it will not only continue with this but make it a main focus given how much the description harps on it – and yes this is unedited and “humanitarian relief” is not some kind of ironic joke;
Thanks to their efforts in humanitarian relief, although with some difficulties they were gradually able to reach out to the locals. They even had a cute elf, a sorceress and a demigoddess in their circle of new friends. On the other hand, the major powers outside the Gate such as the United States, China, and Russia were extremely interested in the abundant resources available in the Special Region. They began to exert diplomatic pressure over Japan.
A suddenly appearing portal to an unknown world—to the major powers it may be no more than a mere asset for toppling the international order. But to our protagonists it is an invaluable opportunity to broaden knowledge, friendship, and ultimately their perspective towards the world.
Read as: Japan, the peace loving fellows who would never harm a soul and simply want to coexist with this other world provide humanitarian relief to a foreign locale in the same way they did to Pearl Harbor and Nanking. However, the evil Empire of the United States of America, the villainous land-stealing Chinese, and Putin simply want to abuse this place for their own gains and begin to harass poor Japan who simply wants to help these other people live in peace under their forcibly taken reign! Only the Japanese understand the beauty of freedom, the sanctity of life, and how important it is to protect this other world from the evil Americans who want only for resources and more power – ignoring the knowledge, friendships, and new thoughts on the world one can gain from being such a peace loving friendly nation.
It entirely ignores the complete fucking opposite that the prime minister of Japan said himself (and even after his passing, the new people in charge said they were continuing his plans) and pretends none of the actions GOING ON RIGHT IN THE SHOW are something perfect little Japan would ever do, let alone the fact that Japan hasn’t even contacted NATO about this and just decided to invade and take over an entire world as their own without hesitation and slaughtering hundreds of thousands of people for it. They’re killing these people who have no chance to even fight back TO DEFEND them, they’re invading and taking over FOR THE GOOD OF THIS WORLD. OF COURSE! JAPAN SIMPLY WANTS FREEDOM, HAPPINESS, AND SAFETY FOR ALL – AND TO ACHIEVE THAT THEY MUST PAINT THE WORLD OVER WITH THE BLOOD OF THOSE THEY SHALL PROTECT FOR THE ONLY SAFETY AGAINST THE EVIL AMERICANS AND CHINESE IS DEATH BY THE HANDS OF THE ALWAYS HONORABLE AND PEACEFUL JAPANESE. CULL THOSE WITH PURE SOULS, END THE SUFFERING OF THE OTHER WORLD BEFORE IT COMES TO THEM.
WE THE PRIDEFUL JAPANESE WILL STRIKE DOWN ALL THOSE WHO NEED SAVING EVEN IF THEY SIMPLY DO NOT UNDERSTAND, AND EVEN IF THEY ARE TOO ILL EQUIPPED TO HAVE ANY DIFFERENT CHOICE IN THE MATTER OR STAND ANY CHANCE AT STOPPING US. HONOR IS WHAT WE LIVE FOR, PRIDE IS WHAT WE LIVE FOR, AND PROTECTING YOU AND YOUR WORLD IS ALL THAT MATTERS TO US. ONLY THOSE WHO BOW TO US AND LET US TAKE OVER AND ANNEX THEIR WORLD AS OUR OWN WILL SURVIVE FOR THEY ARE THE CHOSEN ONES.
NIPPON! NIPPON! NIPPON! FOR THE HONOR OF THE EMPEROR!
I want to say fuck this show because at times it feels like straight up Japanese nationalistic propaganda and it’s clear the ex-JSDF guy who wrote it put that all in intentionally and is blissfully ignorant of the rampant hypocrisy (there’s an incredibly tiny possibility he’s aware of the jingoistic imperialistic shit in this and is trying to make some kind of social commentary – but it sure as fuck doesn’t come off that way at all and it’s meaningless if he doesn’t make it somehow noticeable, so I don’t think it’s the case), but it’s entertaining and this setting is one very similar to what I’ve always dreamed of writing a story about. I can’t help but keep watching and keep enjoying it for now and really even those issues SO FAR are not drawing away too much from the overall quality. This is what I expected, but in many ways equally as much what I feared, I just hope it doesn’t let that ruin everything else about it by focusing on this shit more and more and instead makes this whole post moot and silly to look back on. Not to mention the only other ‘antagonist’ they have so far is the most lazily thrown together “I’m an evil king guy look how evil I am I’m being mean to a cute girl and I don’t care about my people’s lives and really am just using this all as a way to expand my power go kill innocent villagers look how evil I am oh I’m just so evil” big bad imaginable. Oh, and of course as long as it doesn’t turn into a harem.
Sadly I don’t see this going beyond just an entertaining and alright series rather than the amazing thing it could have been. I still greatly enjoyed both episodes so far, and I do highly recommend checking it out as it’s probably my second favorite show this season next to Gakkou Gurashi which is miles above this already with even only one episode so far but yeah. This is alright, watching a bunch of tanks blast knights and anti-air mobile attack platforms blasting dragons is pretty fucking cool, and it’s well worth spending the time with so far to check it out if you haven’t yet.
edit: dropped this finally, it just kept getting worse and worse. The military inaccuracies when it’s being written by an ex-military man, the unbelievably high level of nationalism just oozing out of every scene, and the massive otaku pandering with things like a slutty lewd goth loli are just too much to take.