I asked on Twitter whether I should review Shadows House, Pretty Boy Detective Club or both. And Shadows House cam in dead last. But you know, I finished the first episode just a few minutes ago and I had to tell you guys about it. So I’m going to do some mini reviews. Or at least I’ll try to keep this short.

So why exactly did I have to tell you guys about episode 1 of Shadows House so bad. In a word, this episode was so cool. For like the 5 first minutes there is no dialogue but you get this amazing amount of world building just from the images. And after that the dialogue is tongue in cheek. It was super light and we only really had two nice characters the entire time yet I was tense throughout the episode. That is some very good non verbal storytelling and you guys know how much I like that.

The visuals were also really cool. I mean the character designs are probably the least cool thing, well the non-shadow ones but I liked those too. However what you might not be getting from my screencaps is that everything outside of the characters is textured. It gives the impression of hard pencil drawings and that’s just awesome to look at. And it brings out the sooth which just adds to the atmosphere.

The premise is super cool. A noble house of living shadows build these living dolls to serve them. We know next to nothing but it seems to be happening on a world much like our own history except for this Shadows House. The doll is living, full of emotions and has a mortal body but it was built and it is a doll. The shadows emit sooth when they are in any way disturbed. There is this prevailing sense of danger and mystery even as the story is just telling us about these two young ladies becoming friends. I have a sinking feeling that broken porcelain doll was foreshadowing. I’m really hooked at this point and I want to know more.

Bit maybe the coolest thing, and that is saying a whole lot, is the soundtrack. Old timey instrumental arrangements are layers over this entire episode and somehow it brings everything together. I have to say, this was one of the best first episodes I have seen in a while. I’m pretty psyched about the season. Did any of you watch this first episode of Shadows House? I think you should, in case that was not clear.

19 thoughts

  1. Keen to see how this expands – especially with the other characters, and the menace that’s probably on the way and I remember really loving the OP and ED too.

    I know what you mean about the texture too, had me mesmerised.

  2. I’m happy to see someone’s take on it who may have not read the manga. 🙂 I’m happily surprised with how much quality was put into the anime so far… it’s one of my definite continue to watch animes for this season.

    1. I have indeed not read the manga and I have to say if it stays this interesting, I’m likely to pick it up!

  3. I liked it a lot. It’s not everyday you get a fantasy anime that’s descended from Gormenghast rather than the usual Tolkien/DnD or Youkai. Good atmosphere and interesting setting. Not sure yet about the character designs; I’ll wait until the cast opens up. (Pretty Boy Detective Club was pretty fun, too.)

  4. Keep watching this series and enjoy it for what it is!

    Not many people are reviewing it yet, so I gladly read your take on it as new episodes will come out.

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