4 Reasons Why I Will Not Recommend Youjo Senki

Given the fact that I’ve been on hiatus with anime for a couple of weeks now, choosing something for a comeback post seemed like a challenge.

But no. I was bent on watching Youjo Senki because the synopsis was interesting. Plus, I like the military genre. And the summary did say there’s also magic! Of course, I’m hooked.

But I didn’t like it.

Why?

I asked myself the question several times while watching the show.  To be fair, there were interesting things that the anime presented:

  • The unique mix of magic and military genre
  • A cute, badass young girl who terrorizes everyone – comrades or enemies – with her extraordinary, superior wit and fighting prowess
  • Consistent appearances of a so-called god, who apparently existed to force our main protagonist, to abandon atheism and just believe

I don’t see anything wrong with a little girl leading a whole battalion of elite soldiers to war. Nor do I mind the idea of a girl showing disrespect to her superiors and displaying unmatched scheming and manipulation for the sole purpose of rising in power.

It’s part of what makes the ‘reincarnation’ angle look more interesting.

But I could name several things that make me dislike the whole show in general.

I can’t sympathize with Tanya Degurechaff.

It’s possible to like someone else in the story other than the main character.  But protagonists play a crucial role in the entirety of the story.

Tanya, being the center of the series, is made clear even from the pilot episode.  Her desires were presented, so as her thoughts.

But for some reason, I find it difficult to sympathize and fully understand the relationship between her actions and motivations.

I didn’t see her struggling. She did have some issues with ‘being X,’ but she made a way around it.

Not once, but all the time. It turned linear. I don’t know, but I just don’t think she’s a strong protagonist nor is she relatable.

There was no antagonist who provided enough friction to challenge Tanya.

Enemies, yes. A lot of it.

It’s to be expected given her rising popularity in combat at a very young age.

But I was looking for that someone, some group, anyone who can just be a formidable foe! It’s a  military setting with magic and science! So how come everyone’s just so…..lame?

So much is happening at once that the main goal of the protagonist is lost.

Tanya wants one thing – to be promoted, to serve on the rear part of combat away from the more dangerous job of being a field soldier.

But she’s bent on training soldiers too. And of course, she wants to prove ‘god’ wrong.  And yes, despite being ambitious, she apparently cares about loyalty to the ‘Empire’ she serves.

There are so many things dumped into Tanya’s lap one after the other that I struggled to maintain my own focus and retention on why she’s doing what she’s doing.

The ‘god-like’ entity presented in the story did nothing significant to help the story evolve.

If not because of ‘being X,’ Tanya wouldn’t have been born in the first place.

It’s all because ‘being X’ decided to mess things up. You think he’s up to something. And maybe he was considering how he wants Tanya to believe and recognize his existence –  to call his name in every battle she takes part of.

But really, the story will just do well without ‘being X’ doing his regular weird appearances.

In the end, it’s all about Tanya, her ambitions, and constant mockery to ‘the god,’ but I just don’t get it.

I would’ve dropped the series halfway, to be honest. But since I pledged to write something about the series I choose to watch, finishing it is a given.

Besides, I kind of hope that along the way, some sort of twist can salvage the weak storytelling and characterization of the show.  I’m aware of its high ratings online but personally, I won’t recommend it.

What do you think about this series?

 

 

12 thoughts on “4 Reasons Why I Will Not Recommend Youjo Senki”

  1. I completely disagree. I loved this show! I have my own review that goes into all the details, but, of course, I wouldn’t want to post that here without permission. But, talking about what you mention:

    Tanya isn’t supposed to be a sympathetic character. She’s completely amoral and selfish. She joins the military and goes above and beyond to try and put the entire military between herself and a violent death (that’s her motivation), yet her every victory backfires and just makes things worse for her, which is hilarious to behold. And yet, interestingly, she begins to change, just slightly, over the course of the series. At the beginning, she’d never have automatically thrown herself into mortal danger to protect someone else, yet she does exactly that during the climactic ambush. Something in her *is* changing.

    I can see what you mean about challenging her, but, then again, that recurring commander who came back, dressed in blue, quite nearly succeeded in destroying her.

    Which goes into Being X. It does interfere, such as when it revived said commander, giving him a divine charge to destroy Tanya.

    And the entire series discusses human nature. Tanya and the Empire, their greatest strength is logic and reason, but that is also their great weakness. They forget how humans are also creatures of passion, and this invites their complete ruin.

    I loved this anime! 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

  2. I didn’t get through the first episode but that was mostly because of Tanya’s voice. I have been told to give it a second go and I will eventually but that first episode just did not appeal.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Some people really liked the voice but I just found it incredibly painful and distracting to the point where I wasn’t actually paying attention to what was happening in the episode.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. I watched it weekly bc my brother insisted I watch it. He was like this is amazing and I thought, why not? I think what killed it for me was watching it weekly. I just have to binge stuff to really get them if that makes sense. I forget details and feelings if I dont xD but i did really like Tanya because I have a preference for selfish and antihero type characters. I love seeing what ppl will do for their own gain, how cruel they can be (and she was), and the whole religion thing played to another of my weaknesses. I am excited about any future series if we ever get one bc that ending just made for a future ruthless antagonist and another pawn for God (btw i love that hes not this super all caring being here)

    Lol, now I want to rewatch this and write my thoughts on it since I dont think I ever did (oops)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Please do! Will look forward to your post. I think it all boils down to preference. As I’ve mentioned in this post, I adore the military genre, and I’m a sucker for anything with military theme. But I am not a huge fan of moe stuff, and Tanya…..just isn’t my type of character. LOL! It’s nice to know a lot actually found her good!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. MAJOR SPOILER ALERT:

    I wonder if you’ve watched the entire anime. God DOES evolve the story by continuing the war. If that’s not a significant impact, what is?

    Nothing that opposes her? The Free Republic composed of an angry and highly motivated mob from neighboring countries. And the girl that obtains the same yellow glow in her eyes by calling upon God – who happens to hate Tanya’s guts to the core because she killed her father.

    And oh, without her second lieutenants help (or something, she’s the brown haired blue eyed girl in her unit) Tanya would have been destroyed from the father’s self destruction. Why he was so near success? Because he also called upon the powers of God.

    You see, all one needs to seem to do is call upon Being X with conviction and strong desire or whatever and bam, they’re more powerful. That right there is an immense threat. Of course… X wouldn’t grant it to everyone. That would be too boring.

    There was one time when I sympathized with Tanya and that’s her frustration when the the Empire’s strategists revelled in victory, completely neglecting the illogical and impulsive nature of cornered humans, and allowing the war to continue into a full-blown world war far deadlier than before.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. You just don’t understand her personality and misunderstood her, that’s all. It’s not about promotion, glory of a soldier, or proofing X wrong, none at all. I, myself, would’ve relate to her in the same situation.

    But you’re right, you can’t sympathize with Tanya because sympathy is not the kind of emotion you put together in a sentence with this MC.

    Like

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