Kill la Kill: Episode 1 – “If Only I Had Thorns Like A Thistle…”

Kill la Kill is an anime produced by Trigger, and is directed by Hiroyuki Imaishi. As of this writing, the series is being simulcast on Crunchyroll on Thursdays.

The series is set at Honnouji Academy, a high school in post-apocalyptic Japan. The school is run by a fearsome student council. Satsuki Kiryuin is the president of the council, and her mother is the head of the board of directors. For the other members of the council, Satsuki bestows upon them Goku Uniforms, which grant the wearer superhuman abilities. There are one, two, and three-star Goku Uniforms.

One day, a girl named Ryuko Matoi is a new transfer student to Honnouji Academy, and is assigned to Second Year Class K.  A girl in her class named Mako Mankanshoku starts talking with her, and when they’re out on campus, Mako tells Ryuko they need to bow as the student council appears. Ryuko asks who the top dog of the campus is, and she learns that it’s Satsuki, the student council president.

Ryuko suddenly jumps out and tells Satsuki she has a question to ask her. Ryuko pulls out half of a pair of large scissors, and she says she’s looking for the owner of the other half. When Ryuko lunges to attack Satsuki, she is deflected by Takaharu Fukuroda, the Boxing Club Captain. Unfortunately, Takaharu defeats Ryuko during their fight.

When Ryuko is at home and having flashbacks of her father’s death, a trapdoor suddenly opens up below her. We see that it’s Ryuko’s homeroom teacher who activated the door, When she falls, a wound from her battle opens up and blood spills out onto a pile of clothes nearby. The clothes come to life, and they turn out to be a sentient Sailor Uniform. The uniform forces itself onto Ryuko.

When the student council calls out for Ryuko to show herself or Mako will be executed, Ryuko makes an appearance. It turns out the sentient Sailor Uniform is rather skimpy, but gives Ryuko more power. The episode ends with Ryuko and Takaharu having a rematch.

The animation for Kill la Kill is definitely more on the exaggerated side; and in some respects, it could also be said that the story is a bit on the exaggerated side as well. It was interesting for me to also notice that the character designs seemed to be influenced by characters from 1960s and 1970s anime. Of course, the Goku Uniforms are obviously an influence from Dragon Ball, both with the name and the fact that they have different numbered stars on them.

After seeing the first episode of Kill la Kill, I’m not sure that I’ll personally follow it through to the end. However, I would be willing to say that fans of anime such as FLCL and Gurren Lagann may find more enjoyment in Kill la Kill than I am.

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