This is a very fresh addition to my anime graveyard, having dropped this just last night. Normally, I would try out an anime, drop it, and then not bother; the rare exception comes when I feel I have something insightful to say about it. But with Gibiate, there is a specific angle that made me try it in the first place, and after seeing (part) of the results myself, I feel pretty let down. This was compared to Mars of Destruction—an anime so terrible it’s used as a pedestal for all terrible anime to aspire to. Knowing that as a connoisseur of terribad things, how could I resist?
In short, the comparison is a terrible exaggeration. Mars of Destruction is an art form, a splendorous dedication to doing everything wrong in the most amazing way possible. Its short runtime is just the icing on the proverbial cake in that it has no time to develop anything, causing a tornado of information and bizarre instances when they’re wholly unnecessary. Gibiate isn’t anywhere close to this manner of beauty, choosing instead to behave in any standard anime fashion, only more inadequately than normal. This is certainly not a good series, but comparing it to the pinnacle of terrible anime products is just an insult to said terrible anime product.
Mars of Destruction, Skelter Heaven, Koi Koi 7, Diabolik Lovers, Eiken, High Score, Lamune, Tsui no Sora, Twinkle Nora Rock Me; all of these are worse—if not much worse—than Gibiate. And while I’m feeling especially vicious, it’s kind of insulting to me to just freely compare anything that’s not Attack on Titan levels of popularity/perceived quality to Mars of Destruction whenever it suits people. Terrible anime is like amazing anime: both are EXTREMELY rare and hard to achieve.
Okay, with the remnants of my innermost cynicism out there, let’s check this from another perspective. Judging from reviews on MAL, it seems this anime actually had some hype behind it. Among its list of producers include names of credible people within the medium and otherwise. For example, Masahiko Komino, while never serving as show director prior to this, was animation director and key animator for a number of series, such as Bleach and JoJo. Yoshitaka Amano—of Angel’s Egg fame—was the character designer. And Yuzo Koshiro served as the composer, a name synonymous with early-stage gaming soundtracks for the Ys and Streets of Rage franchises.
Knowing all of these key figures being involved and getting this result is a recipe for disaster. Given this, it’s easy to understand how people would be more inclined to rate this lower than they would, say, a random anime that came out of nowhere from an all-rookie team, even if of similar quality. When you expect the world and the world is shit, do you rate that lower than if you knew the world would be shit? It’s a matter of perspectives.
I haven’t said much about the anime itself thus far. That is because, in my eyes, there’s not much to say, and what I covered above is more interesting to me. Gibiate is pretty bad, yes. Not among the worst I’ve ever seen, but bad enough that I feel all the 1/10’s are warranted (to a degree). Dropping this after three episodes, I can’t say definitively how insane or stupid this series does get, though from what I’ve seen, it’s a pretty bare-bones plot about death and survival and evil creatures and whatever. I’ve seen other reviewers call it “unmemorable” and “bland,” which I’m in agreeance with. Not sure how that makes it as bad as Mars of Destruction, but… I really need to stop being irked by that.
How I could best describe this series is with the word “tryhard.” The tone is that of a serious, end-of-the-world plot about survival against unstoppable beasts and relying on the strength of others. Cherishing life and the value of what once was and all that. Standard stuff. Not quite Shadow the Hedgehog levels of tryhard, just serious enough to be oblivious of all the laughable qualities of the plot and especially the writing.
Writing is a very rough mark for this series, as a lot of it hinges upon the viewer caring enough about the characters (hard sell) and ignoring all of the filler remarks they spout upon danger. “Ah! Stop killing us, you bastards!” is an actual thing I paraphrased from the second episode that someone felt the need to say while gunning down monsters. Brilliant. Other things don’t have much weight to them outside of obligatory exposition, and the story doesn’t really make a whole lot of sense. Things just happen and the viewer is expected to take it at face value. These figures from the past are ultra powerful and can combat these monsters better than people with guns. Because… swords are cool, I guess.
By far the worst part, however, is the CGI design. Monsters look horrible. Horrible. I had to say it a second time just for emphasis, because they’re among the worst things I’ve seen in a modern anime in some time. They look straight out of a Final Fantasy VII cutscene. Just the most disgusting, putrid-looking things imaginable. Maybe it was intentional, which would be a bold move, but the end result just makes it seem incredibly amateurish. Again, the expectations provided by the cast involved, only to have this be the result.
To wrap this up succinctly, I don’t think this is the latest scourge upon the anime medium. I do think it is pretty bad, however. Somewhere between a 2-3/10 would be my rating, and that’s just for the first three episodes. Again, I have no idea how this story ends or if it even ends. The series is one that just permeates mediocrity from every aspect, especially animation and writing. Many see this as a modern disasterpiece, while I have seen too many horrid abominations to view this as anything more than harmless nonsense.
Thank you for your time. Have a great day.