HELCK North American Premiere

The Helck premiere was much more to the point compared to others, with Starsama13 from HIDIVE hosting the event. We drove right into the premiere, which was a back-to-back screening of the first two episodes, and by the end, I was thrilled with what I saw. Initially, I was slightly concerned because, as a fan of the source material, I was worried that Helck would forgo the series’ brand of over-the-top comedy in favor of focusing more on the serious and tragic lore in the background. The first few minutes specifically focused on the character Helck and how ominous his presence is with dark shadows and foreboding music. But after the anime opening aired, the tone was much more in line with the original manga.

Anime Expo 2023 - HELCK North American Premiere - ماركا نيوز

The music feels epic and triumphant, even during scenes where characters just yell at each other, but that feels intentional. It’s nice to see Vermilio’s violent outbursts in animated form. While Helck’s anime iteration isn’t as goofy as his manga counterpart, Katsuyuki Konishi‘s incredible, happy-go-lucky delivery really sells it. His laughing, in particular, really kills me.

However, this isn’t a one-to-one adaptation, as the pacing did feel much faster from what I remember reading in the first two manga volumes. These two episodes covered roughly most of the first volume, if my memory is correct, and one thing I liked about the manga’s first volume is how it transitioned from incredibly unserious to almost dark and suspenseful. I mentioned that the overall tone is much more in line with the source material here. Still, there were many more moments of foreshadowing for those darker elements throughout the first episode. The payoff isn’t nearly as shocking. It’s not necessarily bad; it’s just different and gives the impression that this anime will try to cover a significant portion of the original source material by showing different parts of the story simultaneously. It is hard to say whether it will be successful in the long run, but I’m looking forward to what the staff has in store for us!

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