Fireball Has Charmed Me

When Scamp initially posted about Fireball, for some reason I thought he was joking with his enthusiasm for it (although now I am not sure why I thought this). Then last week I was scouring for stuff to watch, and remembered that, as a whole, Fireball‘s first season is about 20 minutes. “Why the hell not?” I said to myself and fired up the videos on YouTube. 20 minutes later, I was raring for the newly started second season, Fireball Charming.

It’s not that Fireball is an amazing series; it’s just a fun series that knows its limitations and gets in and out each episode without too much fuss. The entertainment is high, and there’s enough variety to keep things fresh. Have to respect a series like that.

The show is about two robots: Drossel von Flügel and her servant, Gedächtnis. They live in a vast fortress in a mysterious city during a time where robots and humans are in the middle of a bitter, intense war . . . but the series is mostly concerned with the bizarre dialogues Drossel and Gedächtnis have while cooped up in their keep. Some of their talks are tough to get because they rely so heavily on Japanese wordplay, but there’s enough funny shit going on to make the series as a whole worthwhile.

My favorite parts of Fireball, however, are the random bits of backstory. The show is hilariously blase about building its world; Drossel really could not care less about what is happening outside, so it’s always a shock when she mentions something like certain species of animal being extinct, or dolphins having been the second most intelligent life form on Earth when they were alive (humans were third). What’s also hilarious is that the show takes place over a period of 144 years (each episode displays the current year with the title), but hanging around Drossel and Gedächtnis, it’s difficult to tell because every episode’s introduction is animated similarly. The random asides for backstory build until the finale, which of course is animated almost the same as the other episodes except for the end.

Probably a function of budget, but a touch I find funny. Seems like the show has a boosted budget now, though. Still the same spirit, however, which is cool with me. Drossel and Gedächtnis are the heart of the series, and through two episodes, Fireball Charming is pretty damn good — maybe even my favorite of the season so far. Their interactions have such a wonderful sense of comedic timing to them, which is not something I often see in anime without a thousand overreactions following it. The part in the second episode where Gedächtnis’ game falls apart had me laughing hard. It’s a simple physical joke but executed very well.

I’ve let Fireball work its charms on me, and you all should take 20 minutes of your time to let it do the same to you. The first season is easy to find on YouTube, and gg is subbing the second season. Go for it!

9 Responses to “Fireball Has Charmed Me”

  1. The thing is, they have IRONY! Instead of relying on bombastic overreactions to carry weak jokes (ahem My Ordinary Life) these robots blaze through non sequiturs and contradictory turns of speech without batting an eye. The episode in the first season where they spoofed laugh tracks showed Fireball doesn’t need the “please laugh here” signage that gets beaten in our heads so often.

    Also, the humor comes from their body language too. They move so strangely; spastically striking poses one moment, then moving in fliud, joyful motion the next. Everything is directed by such twisted, bizarre, and creative logic that it puts to shame how blatantly robotic other anime comedies are.

  2. 144 years? I must have missed that part. That was genius.

    • I missed it, too, because I totally don’t pay attention to small details like that. But then I read it about it on the Wikipedia entry for the show and lol’d.

  3. Yay Fireball fans~!

    I didn’t notice the time period either, but apparently this season is meant to be a prequel of sorts. What difference that makes I do not know

  4. This anime is SO underrated. I’m glad they made a Season 2. Hopefully it’ll get the attention it deserves.

    • Admittedly, I had not heard of Fireball until Scamp mentioned — and I’m at least familiar with a fair amount of anime — so it is underexposed, though liked quite a bit by those who have seen it.

  5. rauc6788 Says:

    I love the Hitchhikers guide to the galaxy reference as well. I wonder what happened to all the mice?

    Really fun, fast paced show.

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