Made in Abyss 04

The first layer isn’t much of a challenge to these red whistles, but the perils that await ahead are all too real. The abyss is a good place to have friends behind you.

“The Edge of the Abyss”

Reg and Riko can really cover ground quickly. Although this feels like a rush through the first layer, it also seems to be the most boring layer of the adventure. With a little bit of tension, fearing capture by Leader, the pair descend mostly un-hindered by obstacles. The extendo-arm is a pretty useful tool, of course. Speaking of Leader though, it turns out he knew what the group had been up to and passed on a message to Riko when Reg was caught sneaking around the night before. It’s clear that Leader and Riko share a greater bond than just student and teacher, so it’s rather heartwarming to see him give her a chance to fulfill her dreams before he, you know, does his job and all.

The monsters in this series seem to be animated in a kind of purposefully out-of-style way that is pretty interesting. It’s as if they are straight out of a different dimension, giving them a truly other-worldly kind of aesthetic. While the art and backgrounds of this episode feel more like standard beautiful, not quite in the class of the first few episodes, it still evokes a fantastical setting. Perhaps its just the kind of boring edge of the abyss with its grassy plains and cliffs. It’s all so standard, while some of the locations to come seem far more complex. This really does serve to accentuate the different art style of the monsters – most notably the birds at the end of the episode.

I was worried with the departure from the city that we wouldn’t get too much more from the side characters. Clearly I had forgotten that Riko knows some rather impressive individuals, and Habo is the first to encounter the pair on their journey. It makes sense, Shiggy and Nat asking him for some help. Of all the people, he seems the kindest and most easily intrigued by rare artifacts. I still feel like Leader is going to catch up despite the fact they don’t follow red whistles in to the second layer. I am also quite curious about the other cave raiders and strange people living full-time in the abyss at certain levels – and don’t forget about the other major character we’ve yet to even meet. There is so much life to this series so far, it’s a joy to experience each week.

Episode Score
8.6/10 (Very Good)

Extra thoughts:

  • Watching this show always makes me want to play a new MMO. I’m a big World of Warcraft veteran, and have played Guild Wars 2 and Final Fantasy XIV. Any suggestions for a nice fantasy world to escape to?
  • That soup looks sketchy as hell, but sounds really good.
  • Oh no, she lost her cool little compass thingy! No way that’s going to be important or anything later on. No way whatsoever…
  • “Nothing mechanical about those balls of yours.” Oh my that’s awkward.
  • When she hits Habo with her hair I couldn’t believe how cute it was. Riko is so perfectly air-headed in her honesty. The flashback to her younger days and Habo lifting her up to see the abyss really hits hard as he sees her off.
  • Damn this show and its continuous emotional goodbyes. I can only handle so many.
  • Leader does have a name, but for the purposes of Riko always calling him that, we’ll stick with Leader.

Next time: “Incinerator”

Made in Abyss - 04 - Next Time

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