Genre: Mecha, Sci-fi, Action
Aired: Jul 7, 2016 to Nov 24, 2016
Also Known As: レガリア The Three Sacred Stars
Summary: In the country of Rimgarde, a mysterious event shook the country and its people just 12 years prior. As time passed, memory of the incident began to fade while peace reigned over the land. Sisters Yui and Rena live a quiet life in the Enastria Empire until a large mecha suddenly attacks their peaceful home, changing everything. The girls become caught in a vortex of destiny and godly revival.
Review: If you’re wondering about how Regalia aired from July to November, the show temporarily stopped after episode 4 due to quality issues. The broadcast resumed service in September, but the studio should have quit while it was ahead (or behind), to be frank. And I should have done the same.
I was not impressed by the show when it first aired during Summer 2016. It got to the point that I was actually dreading writing episodic reviews for Regalia, so imagine my relief when the show was momentarily cancelled. If I hadn’t decided to try to review all of the shows in 2016 that could possibly count as yuri, then I would have never touched the show again altogether. But since I did, I marathoned the show on Sunday.
If stopping Regalia from broadcasting until Fall 2016 was to make time for the studio to improve its quality, I would have to say that their efforts were a failure. There were many instances of off-model faces as well as lazy animation.
As for the characters – all but the three Regalias and their partners (aka the six main characters) were essentially ignored. They received no backstory, minimal screentime unless they were interacting with a Regalia or her partner, and were basically just side characters in every sense of the term.
The main six aren’t that better off, either (I’m going to go into major spoilers territory here, by the way, because I honestly believe that this show has nothing to offer aside from decent music). Rena has trouble trusting in Yui despite living with her for 12 years. C’mon, Rena, the whole “I-have-got-to-do-everything-myself” attitude is terrible. At least she grows out of it eventually, but then she starts having angst over the fact that there’s another Rena in her head.
The best character, in my opinion, was Yui with her optimism and determination. But is it really worth watching a show just for a single character? Since we’re talking about Regalia, I’d have to say no.
Tia and Sara keep the show on a light note, at least, but they are incredibly one-dimensional and tend to grate on the nerves with their high-pitched voices and static responses. And then there’s the matter of Kei and Ingrid. Kei was brainwashed by the villain of the story so Ingrid has to play the bad guy and listen to his orders to keep Kei safe. Yet Ingrid didn’t show any signs of hesitantion or remorse for her actions until after episode 4. It’s like the studio wanted to drum up the fact that one Regalia and her partner was fighting the other two for some reason but they hadn’t thought of the reason until after the show resumed broadcasting in Fall 2016.
The villain was no good, too. As stated above, he sets up this entire masterplan in order to become God, basically. Why? Because he’s fucking lonely. Terrible. It’s like he was a bad guy that came straight out of a second-rate movie. And we’re finding this out in the last episode or two, too. Way to keep us in suspense over such a weak motive. The only thing notable about him was the fact that he wears thigh-highs-and-short-shorts as a guy, I guess.
I found the female characters to be nice to look at, at least. Since the OP and ED aren’t completly horrible and the main girls look cute, you can better spend your time listening to the singles and browsing through fanart and doujins. That’ll be time well spent in my book! At least better than watching this show.
The same can’t be said about the mechas, aka the Regalia. I suppose the studio was trying to make the mech look more humanizing, but the designs just ends up looking terrible (in my opinion).
And the pacing. Jeez. Sometimes it felt like too much was happening in an episode. Other times it felt like nothing happened. I’m pretty sure Tia and Sara sat there and gathered energy for at least an entire episode while Kei and Ingrid basically fought 1v3. It was like the modern day Dragon Ball Z with those energy charges.
There was no sense of foreshadowing. Things happened and you would have no idea why or how it was possible. Some things just didn’t get explained so plot threads were left way open. How the fuck did Johann not die from the original explosion? Why is there suddenly a dozen of him after he was alledgedly killed? Why do they all just appear for that one single instance only for them to disappear just as suddenly without ever reappearing ever again?
As for the yuri, it’s hard to root for ships when each Regalia and her partner act like sisters around each other. It doesn’t help that the Regalias all look like lolis. But then the studio throws us a bone by giving us a little Ingrid x Yui shiptease. They eventually call each other by their first names, too, which is something they only do between each other. Still, it’s not anything spectacular and you shouldn’t watch this show just because of this age gap ship.
It’s not often I find myself condemning a show this throughly on my blog. I usually try to list the show’s strengths alongside its weaknesses and then encourage readers to watch the first episode and decide if said episode is a good representation of what viewers should expect for the series.
But Regalia? It’s not worth your time. The characters are underdeveloped, the animation is subpar, the pacing is terrible, and the plot is weak. All you’ll be left with is disappointment should you watch this show that should have remained canceled.