Post Reply Brynhildr in the Darkness
Polysyllabic Support Lead
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Posted 5/8/14
by Onymous



Murakami Ryouta is one of the best students in his prestigious school and the sole member of the astronomy club. As a child he was introduced to astronomy by a black-haired girl he affectionately named Kuroneko (black cat) who had a distinct triangle of moles near her armpit. She insisted that aliens existed and used a telescope to search the night sky for evidence of their existence.

During a childhood adventure to a dam to find aliens on Earth, Murakami fell and dragged Kuroneko after him when she attempted to catch him. Murakami survived the fall, but was told Kuro Neko died instantly, a tragedy which he has forever blamed himself for. Ever since, he has used the schools observatory to search the sky for aliens in her memory.

Years later, a girl who looks just like the girl from his childhood shows up in his class as a transfer student named Kuroha Neko. Murakami is so sure it is the same person he demands to know if it is her in front of the entire class.



Kuroha states that she is not the same person, but Murakami is unconvinced. Kuroha later approaches him with the warning that he will die if he misses the last bus taking him home from the observatory. To test her claim, Murakami misses the bus on purpose and is nearly killed by a rockslide only to be saved by Kuroha, who splits a boulder on course to crush him in half with her mind.



With this discovery, Murakami follows after Kuroha to discover the origin of her powers and the dark forces following her. He meets her friend Tachibana Kana, who has the power to see the future

A secret organization is performing experiments upon young girls, putting devices called “Harnest” into the back of their neck which give them the ability to use supernatural powers. Referred to as Witches, the girls powers are rated on a D to AAA scale, with the AAA being the most powerful and usually possessing multiple abilities.

The experiments are cruel and unusual, causing neurological damage in many of them which result conditions such as memory loss or total body paralysis. From the limited information that has been revealed, it seems the girls are kidnapped at an age so young that they never learned to read Kanji.

Kuroha and Tachibana were two of a large number of girls whose powers were ranked B or below who were destined to be exterminated and escaped. The organization will stop at nothing to track them down and kill anyone who discovers the existence of the witches. To this end, they are deploying their most powerful AA+ witches with hybrid powers to capture or kill them. Add to that that the experiments put a limiter on the girls lifespan which require daily doses of pills called death suppressants to stave off, and the escapees chances seem bleak.



The series presents an interesting narrative dynamic: the group is informed of future events by Tachibana’s “broadcasts” of the future. Brynhildr in the Darkness explores concepts such as inevitability and how even having knowledge of the future and change the future events. In addition to responding to these broadcasts, the group constantly has the threat of being discovered by the organization hanging over their head and must balance avoidance with moves steal the stashes of death suppressants out from beneath the noses of the organization.

Fortunately for the group, Murakami has his own self-described power. In addition to his intelligence, he possesses eidetic memory and uses his tremendous mental faculty to help the runaway girls survive the outside world and keep a step ahead of the secret organization. Even with limited knowledge of the situation, Murakami is able to quickly grasp the nature of the problem and rapidly come up with plans that even the organization is unprepared for.

The narrative is a bit rough in places, but the core concepts behind the series are very powerful and well executed to form a compelling story. Many mysteries very quickly present themselves including the origin of the girl’s power, the motives of the organization, and if Kuroneko’s childhood claims held an element of truth. All in all, Brynhildr has an interesting take on some mainstays of Japanese animation, with grim and progressive themes that create a very unique flavor with notes of an impending apocalypse.

Also, it has a really badass dubstep opening theme.
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Posted 5/12/14
Thanks for the review, I'll definitely check this one out!
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27 / M / UK
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Posted 5/12/14
Kuroneko (black cat) learned something new today
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California
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Posted 5/12/14
if only the anime were as good as you said~
spoiler: it's absolute crap
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Posted 5/12/14
It's not that bad o.o
matter of opinion though I suppose
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Posted 5/12/14
It's pretty bad, objectively, with a lot of unnecessary fan service. It's fun, though, with just barely competent enough writing to feel smart without actually having to activate your brain. The tone can really be all over the place, though.
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Posted 5/13/14
I honestly love this anime. I feel like almost everything is done properly. There is the right amount of blood for me, right amount of fan service, the right amount of seriousness, and the right amount of comedy. I always cannot wait till the next episode.
elux72 
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Posted 5/21/14
Brynhildr is very high on my list of must-see shows. I agree that it's hitting all the right notes so far, with a nice balance of light and dark moments. The characters, too, are interesting, and I find myself caring about what's happening to them.
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