Fate/Stay Night (2006) Review

Synopsis

There is a war going on between masters and servants in order to attain the Holy Grail. Each master can call up one servant each, and their task is to eradicate the other servants, either by defeating them or killing their master. When there is only one master or servant left, he or she is granted the Holy Grail, and any wish they desire will come true.

Review

Generally, there is a plot and they stuck to it but Fate/Stay Night is neither original nor fascinating. The flow of the story ranges from average to painstakingly slow, with a little too much emphasis on the Holy Grail. Saber’s story is not shown until half of the anime leaving other people confused. The other characters’ stories are presented one by one but some stories are superficial and you never get to know the depth of a character which will manage to make them look silly towards the end. The typical mid-series crisis is also present where the animation drops a little and the story slows down.

The romance is present but not too overwhelming and that helps to make the genre well-defined. It is clearly more action and fantasy than romance. Animation is one of the better elements of Fate/Stay Night. It’s not fantastic but it is good enough to show off the mood of the anime. Essentially, the visuals are quite good and they showed a generous amount of fighting scenes that are both detailed and pretty. The character designs for the servants are good and customized along with their powers; they showcase a wide variety of characters that would initially seem generic but turns out better as the series goes on. The backgrounds are not bad too; they work fairly well with the scenes.

The bottom line is: the colors were not too pastel or flashy (which is good), the background was a little too static for a series of its length, battle scenes are a few degrees above average and the conversation scenes are mostly talking heads and expressive eyes.

The audio is good but not great. The voices of the characters fit them except for Sakura’s voice which sounded too high for her character stereotype. The opening and ending songs are appropriate for the mood of the anime: not too dark and not too cheerful.

For the lead character, Shirou is the most annoying, least sensible, and least developed of all. He is the type of character who would put principle over logic. The creators clearly attempted to present a good guy who would put others over himself and instead created a messed-up character that most of the time brought trouble to himself and everyone else. Too idealistic and too incompetent- that is Emiya Shirou. His redeeming factor comes later in the series when he finally decides to cooperate with others instead of choosing to face everything by himself. That’s his development: nothing too drastic but good enough to make him more likable.

Saber is more developed than Shirou. Her struggles are more realistic, her desires are unselfish and her character is one that can be easily empathized with.

The support characters fit their roles. Rin, especially, not only serves as a part of the story but she literally supports the main character in every sense of the word.

Conclusion

Yes, the story wasn’t great and the lead character could be irritating but Fate/Stay Night when taken collectively actually surpasses the average. I did have high expectations for this anime but it didn’t turn out that great. It didn’t live up to the hype put into it but it still is a good watch because they give a good dose of fight scenes which were done beautifully and despite the average plotline, it actually presents some depth.

  • Audio: Good
  • Video: Clean
  • Plot: Straight to the point
  • Style: unoriginal but still nice
  • Characters: lead character is annoying but the rest are okay
  • Violence: present because of the fighting
  • Language: No offensive language
  • Nudity: no nudity
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Episodes: 24
  • Rating: 3.5 of 5

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