Anime Review: Zero kara Hajimeru Mahou no Sho (Grimoire of Zero) (Spring 2017)
In a world of constant war between humans and witches, there exist the "beastfallen"—cursed humans born with the appearance and strength of an animal. Their physical prowess and bestial nature cause them to be feared and shunned by both humans and witches. As a result, many beastfallen become sellswords, making their living through hunting witches.
Despite the enmity between the races, a lighthearted witch named Zero enlists a beastfallen whom she refers to as "Mercenary" to act as her protector. He travels with Zero and Albus, a young magician, on their search for the Grimoire of Zero: a powerful spell book that could be extremely dangerous in the wrong hands. During their journey, his inner kindness is revealed as he starts to show compassion and sympathy towards humans and witches alike, and the unlikely companions grow together.
Ahh… it really felt like this anime had a great scope and world building but it really felt short in the end. Basically we follow three main characters – Mercenary (a beastfallen); Zero (a witch) and Albus (another witch who was hunting the Mercenary – we all know that beastfall hate witches).
What were their goals?
- Zero, is a witch (not affliated with anyone) that wrote a book – Grimoire of Zero – that was used to spread magic throughout the land. Btw first plot-hole Magic already was used before??
- Mercenary was going throughout the land killing witches
- Albus (a regular guy who was part of Sorcerers of Zero)
There is a war going on – In one side we have the Empire who abhors Magic; in the other we have the Sorcerers of Zero (witches) who started a war after the Empire killed Sorena (a witch accused of starting a plague) and then we’ve got some Rogue Witches (who basically are against them all but we never see them...)
We also have some mysterious character called "Him" that teach the Sorcerers of Zero magic (through the Grimoire of Zero) and we also have a guy called Thirteen who is a witch but fights for the Empire.
In the beginning of the anime we’ve got Zero - a young teen who is trying to find the book she created. She finds a beastfallen that she calls Mercenary and employ him as a bodyguard. Later we meet Albus who is hunting the Mercenary Albus is later captured by the Mercenary and Zero but then becomes their companion rather than prisoner.
As they travel throughout the land they arrive at a city where Albus says it’s the residence of the Grimoire of Zero. They found everyone dead and Albus says that maybe Sorena’s Grandaughter escape with it – well SPOILER ALERT – She is Sorena’s granddaughter SO why would she say that??
This some plot hole but there are so many of them… the all 13 and Him plot is rather bad.... Any normal person would immediately knew that 13 was Him. After all it is said that 13 stole the Grimoire of Zero, but it was "Him" that teaches the Sorcerers of Zero with the book 13 stole (yeah right...) Oh... And "Him" ask that each sorcerer of zero to commit their souls to him – (so if they try to kill him or if he dies they all died)
Then we've got the actions by 13? Well in the end we learn that 13 is killing all witches because he wants Zero to rule the land. What? So why did he first kill everyone with whom they live with, then teach people magic, created a coven called the sorcerers of Zero and then join the other side to start a war? I really didn’t understand that… this is some bad writing right there…. And why is not Zero upset that 13 killed all her friends where she lived with?
Then there are other inconsistencies – Zero hires Mercenary to help him and then in some episode she makes a curse on him that says that everything that happens to him will get back to her – Why? If she loves him or cares for him and he being a tank is not a idiotic move? There is no real purpose for this… Who was the bodyguard of who?
Then we've got Holden - another beastfallen. They first fight with him in the city because he had some woman captured. Later on we learn that he was the bodyguard of Albus - SO WHY THE HECK WAS HE DOING THAT? Were these woman related in any way to Albus disappearance? It made no purpose or sense...
- Well, the Mercenary is the only one with redeeming qualities. We learn more about his drama and conflicts because beastfallen are not well receive within the human world; but they also hunt witches because they blame them for their curse state. It's like an outcast...
Zero – Well a young girl that creates the Grimoire of Zero and is searching for it in the open world where she had never gone before. She doesn’t evolve that much in terms of characters – except – in terms of connecting to people. She has some comic reliefs throughout the season. But is she a good girl? She knows 13 killed all her friends from beneath the mountain but she is not even upset. She doesn't try to punish 13 after he started a war in her name...
Albus – A boy who turns out to be a girl and Sorena’s granddaughter and the leader of the pack called Sorcerers of Zero. Yeah that's it...
Thirteen – the main antagonist who basically kill thousands of people, so Zero could rule the land. He fought for both sides and play some seriously mind tricks on everyone (except when Zero tells him in the last episode that when she wrote the Grimoire of Zero she made some mistakes on purpose so no-one could beat her – what?) Another plot hole – So Thirteen only knows magic because of the Grimoire of Zero? Does he not knew before?
Then in the end how do they resolve everything? Well basically Albus has eliminating magic throughout the land. In the beginning he starts doing just that – so my question is – every magician could do that or just him/her?
Afterwards it’s Zero, the Mercenary, Albus, Holdem (Albus bodyguard) and Thirteen (now a good guy) do that thing and Zero eliminates magic. Could she do that as well? And to all magic or only the magic based on Grimoire of Zero?
Enfin, I cannot say what to I think about his... I try to love the world but it felt short. It was badly written with some plot holes I cannot forgive.
Will there be a second season? I doubt it. There is room for that but I don't think it will get it.
Btw, in the beginning I had put a rating of 7 but as I watch the last three episodes I got so disappointed.