Surly Summaries: Concrete Revolutio

Concrete Revolutio is an interesting but very messy series.  In the beginning it was a total clusterfuck, but rapidly improved until it became one of the shows I was most interested in this season.  I applauded it’s bold and unique visual style, and loved the wide variety of powers and monsters involved.  The show has some serious handicaps however.  The state of the world is wildly different from our own but there’s no explanation for the differences beyond vague references to some huge war, and Japan marching in total lockstep with the US where policy is concerned.  They have dates of a sort, to show time gaps between the parts of the episodes happening in the current season and the ones which will happen later on, but the date system is so different from our own it provides no useful point of reference.  I can’t get exact time lengths between events in the future, the present or the past, and that bothers me some.  What bothers me more is that I want to know more about the current geopolitical state of the world and the events that caused the shifts between this world and ours, and no such explanation exists beyond “the war” and the handful of incidents that aliens and the Superhuman Bureau have manipulated into occurring.  That part is fantastic though, the slow but sure delving into the controversial nature and actions of the Superhuman Bureau and it’s members, is handled very well.  They never reveal too much but make sure to reveal enough to keep you interested, as they show the flaws of the imperfect solution that is the Superhuman Bureau.  In a similar vein it does an ok job making you sympathize with both sides of every incident as the normal humans are making a mess where superhumans are concerned.  They also do a decent job bringing all of the incidents, which seem like episodic problems at first, together into one larger struggle, helped by good recurring characters.

As it stands the story still needs work to unravel, with a second season coming in April, meaning this was a split core show.  I have talked about the evils of split core shows before, linked here and here, and they are a problem.  But I want to take a moment to appreciate Concrete Revolutio as a series which did split core right.  The story is still very much on-going, but the current arc has concluded nicely and set into motion all the events which place the characters in their future positions that we saw in snippets throughout the series.  This is where split core shows should end, not in the middle of an arc or on a fucking cliffhanger like the popular examples I can think of (UBW, Tokyo Ghoul and Aldnoah Zero).  So overall the story is solid first chapter in a larger and soon to come story I am very much looking forward to.  It is however a bit jumbled for the moment and lacks some much needed explanation, so it may be better to try this show once season 2 comes out, in case you haven’t watched it yet.  Thank you for reading, hope to see you in the next one.

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