Azur Lane: The Animation (Season One)

That’s a wrap for Azur Lane: The Animation, and so here’s the final review so that we can wrap it up here on the site! Delay withstanding, how was season one of Azur Lane?

Azur Lane The Animation Point Wink

Synopsis

Azur Lane: The Animation is based on the Azur Lane mobile game, featuring girls named after historical warships that rule the waves, so to speak. There are four main factions, based off of the USA, Great Britain, Germany, and Japan. In the anime, both the German and Japanese factions band together to strike at the remaining two factions, vying for power.

This causes a series of conflicts between the two sides that culminates with a final battle in which the siren, an alien species of sorts, threaten the world and the four factions come together to defeat the new found threat.

The Art

While I had read some criticism regarding Azur Lane’s production quality, specifically animation, I personally enjoyed the animation quality overall. I believe there was maybe one episode where I noticed what looked like some rushed scenes, but other than that I was more than pleased with the way this anime looks.

I think one aspect of Azur Lane that really helped to enhance the visuals was the ocean. That deep blue ocean that’s often a background to whatever is going on really made all the other colours of the anime just pop out. Even without the sea, I found that Azur Lane has such vibrant colours and many moments were simply beautiful.

The Story

The story for Azur Lane is where things fall short for Azur Lane. Immediately after introducing us to this world in which warship girls are a thing, we are tossed into a conflict between warring Azur Lane factions. The problem is just that it seemed to move to fast in the beginning… only to then slow down to a snail’s pace as in many episodes of Azur Lane, nothing story-wise happens!

What we get is this sort of mix between the overarching story of war, and the daily lives of the warship girls. Some episodes felt slice of life, others more akin to an action anime. I’m not saying this combination can’t work, but it felt bizarre here, especially because of how rushed the conflict felt in the beginning. I thought that they could have possibly paced things out better.

Azur Lane’s Purpose

There’s no use beating around the bush. Azur Lane: The Animation is marketing material for Azur Lane the mobile game. It’s obvious, and I knew that going into this. Anyone who has heard of the mobile game will know this. That said, it doesn’t mean the anime itself can’t be good.

Overall, I’d say that as a standalone anime, Azur Lane felt like it was lacking. However, I believe that the viewer experience would change depending on whether or not you play the mobile game, because if you do, then there’s another element to the anime in which you can identify the various warship girls and see which ones you have in the game, and which you don’t. The girls become more recognizable because you can relate them to the game.

And I’m guessing the overarching world and story behind these warship girls is probably already understood for players of the game. So there’s no doubt that Azur Lane: The Animation would probably be more enjoyable to people who already play and enjoy the mobile game.

Season Highlights

While Azur Lane ended up being a very lite ecchi anime, there were still some fan service moments. In addition, the various characters ranged from super cute to pretty hot, so even if there’s no explicit ecchi, there’s still a decent amount to look at…

Rating

Story / Characters – Average

Neither the story nor the characters of Azur Lane: The Animation were particularly special. The story didn’t have the impact that I would have liked it to have, and the characters, while cute, didn’t have too much else going for them. Overall, I’d say Azur Lane was average in this department.

Ecchi Content – Cool

Simply put, this isn’t an ecchi anime. It has some fan service, yes, but the focus of the series is all over the place and doesn’t commit too much to ecchi. Azur Lane almost felt like it was treading into the “cute girls do cute things” genre in some episodes, with more of an emphasis on cute than ecchi. So while there’s a bit of eye candy, it’s not enough to merit watching the anime if you’re looking for good ecchi content.

Wrapping Up…

Azur Lane: The Animation ended up being a fairly average anime that has some story issues and it’s pace seemed a bit questionable. It’s cute with some cute moments, and plenty of cute girls, as well as some good action sequences. Hard to put my finger on what this means… but I guess if you’re looking for something that’s cute at times, and intense at others, Azur Lane treads into that territory.

Azur Lane Episodic Posts

As I’ve covered all of the Azur Lane: The Animation episodes, you can find these posts here:

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