Lycoris Recoil is the new original anime from A-1 Pictures studio for Summer 2022. A-1 has constantly churned out hit after hit every year, be it their adaptation (Sword Art Online: Alicization, Kaguya-sama: Love is War) or their original work (Darling in the Franxx, 86). And it looks like Lycoris Recoil could be another addition to their prestigious line-up.
So is it good? Does Lycoris Recoil manage to live up to what the fans have come to expect from A-1 Pictures? Should you watch this original anime? Here’s our first impression of Lycoris Recoil.
Cute Girls with Guns
In the world of Lycoris Recoil, Japan has seen a massive decrease in violent crime. There are a lot of reasons as to why it happens, but what most people don't realize is the fact that there is a secret organization that purposely eradicates these criminals before they can cause any substantial damage.
The assassins that work for this organization are called “Lycoris” agents, and they are basically high school girls…or at least they look and dress like high school girls. The truth is, these girls are orphans that are trained since they were small to become Lycoris agents. They dress up as high school students simply to make it easier for them to blend in and move around.
The Cute Girls with Guns concept is nothing new in anime. It might’ve been shocking when we saw Puella Magi Madoka Magica do it back in 2011, but nowadays? Not so much. But that doesn’t mean it’s bad or anything. After all, seeing cute girls calmly shoot a criminal in the head with a silencer on is still strangely exciting.
The Hot and Cold Duo with A Twist
The main characters in Lycoris Recoil are a pair of Lycoris agents, Chisato and Takina. Chisato is a carefree girl who does things in her own way, while Takina is a straight-laced girl who only thinks about the best way to execute the mission.
This is the classic hot and cold duo. A loud, muscle-head character is paired with a calm and calculated character. Think Goku and Vegeta from Dragon Ball, Naruto and Sasuke from Naruto, and Itadori and Fushiguro from Jujutsu Kaisen, to name a few.
That being said, Chisato and Takina put a little twist on this familiar trope. Sure, on the surface, Chisato is the carefree muscle-head, while Takina is calm and collected. However, once you get to see them interact and go on missions together, Chisato seems to be the calmer and wiser person, while Takina is the reckless one. So their role is basically flipped during missions, which is an interesting take on this tried-and-true trope.
Clean and Crisp Visual
In terms of animation, A-1 Pictures might not be the most stylistic studio in the industry. Unlike studios like Shaft or Science Saru, it’s hard to identify A-1 Pictures anime just from a glance. What they do have, however, is a clean and crisp visual.
If you go through A-1 Pictures' filmography, you’d notice that their works always have a nice and sharp visual that is truly pleasing to see. Aldnoah.Zero and Your Lie in April may not be as stylistic as Devilman Crybaby and Bakemonogatari, but they still offer a very clean and visually pleasing animation. The same thing can be said for Lycoris Recoil. Be it during simple conversation scenes or when the girls fire a heavy machine gun into a group of criminals, the animation remains clean and crisp.
Based on some of the early episodes, Lycoris Recoil is certainly a very interesting anime. They might use a familiar concept, but the execution thus far is simply flawless. If they manage to tell a compelling story for the rest of the season, it looks like A-1 Pictures would score another home run this year. You should definitely give Lycoris Recoil a try.
Have you watched Lycoris Recoil? Do you like what you see? Would you add this anime to your watch list for this Summer? Let us know in the comment section below.