Vinland Saga Review: Thorfinn and Friends...? (Minor Spoilers)
By: Gari Chutney
Admist the plethora of isekai and harem anime that came out in Summer 2019, fans were blessed with a viking tale called Vinland Saga. As an avid manga reader, this title was always in my plan to read, among other fantasy type stories such as Berserk, Claymore, Vagabond, Blade of the Immortal, etc. You get the point. Seeing that it was finally get an anime adaptation brought me joy as I felt I was drowning myself in the isekai pool... *side eye to Wise Man's Grandchild*
Anyways, Vinland Saga is a pretty chill watch if you like vikings and Norse mythology. Furthermore, if you are someone who appreciates adventure type shows where the most important thing is watching the main protagonist grow and develop before your eyes in order to achieve their personal goal, this may be your show. Starting as a young child, Thorfinn has only known of a simple life. His father Thors, appears to be the paragon of love and compassion, probably something that would rub people from his former life the wrong way. Through a cowardly maneuver, Thors' past catches up to him and his son Thorfinn witnesses the very thing his father wanted to protect him from. Filled with vengeance, Thorfinn is forced to abandon his childlike innocence and grow up the hard way.
Though this season only covers one major arc in the manga, the anime serves as a great introduction and leaves the audience ready to head to the nearest B&N to purchase the first volume. My few critiques for the anime is that the pacing can be a bit slow at times and rushed at others. Also, regarding character death, I wasn't quite attached to any of the recurring characters that die. There's only a handful of characters that the anime tries to get the audience to invest in, so if they were to die, sadness would be evoked. However, what occurs in the anime is that characters who have relative importance but not enough to make me care, die and to me the scenes following such deaths are drawn out too long. Perhaps those deaths serve to shock the audience instead. I didn't suspect most of them and perhaps because of that, surprise was supposed to be the intended emotion rather than sadness. Either way, both critiques are rather shallow because once you finish the show, there is some pay off.