‘Date A Live’ needs no introduction to most anime viewers these days as it has already established itself really well from the first season itself. Speaking of the first season, it was well received by most harem fans because of its smart comedy that was more or less of a parody of famous mecha series like ‘Evangelion‘. Though it did involve all the typical harem archetypes, it was fun to watch and was also extremely hilarious at times. But these days, it seems like it’s extremely hard to make a proper harem anime. What started off as a show with some structured storytelling and clever humor has now turned into a disaster that keeps getting worse with each season. The sole reason why anyone should be watching ‘Date A Live III’ is to find out what happens next in the story. It has a lot of links to season 1 and 2 and its story is a direct continuation; but apart from that, there’s very little in this season that deserves to be praised.
Even before this season was released, certain red flags were raised regarding its production quality which seemed to be subpar in its previews. And though the first episode still seems to have some decent animation, the overall quality seems to decline substantially over the period of 12 episodes. This evident flaw, however, can be forgiven as ‘Date A Live’ was never really known for its animation style in the first place. The biggest problem with this season is certainly not its animation, but it’s the fact that the creators have literally made no attempts to redeem this anime. Instead of taking risks and trying something different, they have simply used the same old harem structure adopted in the previous seasons.
Initially, the basic premise seems to be just fine. The immediate problem lies in how it transitions from one scene to another without having a proper context between them. The show just enters into new plot-lines without even giving a proper closure to the previous one. While this may be a common problem with many Light Novel adaptations, this approach degrades the importance of the best arcs in the story. Without a proper build up, even the most important arc of the season, the Tobiichi Origami, felt absolutely soulless. This also leads to further plot holes as many plot points have just been left unaddressed.
A lot of viewers have been patiently staying with this anime in the hope that it will live up to its true potential. While there are a few moments here and there that will be able to make you laugh, most of it seems to be nothing but a snoozefest. Even then, somehow most viewers are not willing to give up on this anime because of all the potential that it has and again, pretty much everyone is in the hope that sooner or later there will be a better new season that we all deserve to watch for being so patient with the show all along.
Date A Live Season 3 Release Date:
‘Date A Live’ season 3 premiered on January 11, 2019 and came to an end on March 29, 2019. During this span, it aired a total of 12 episodes with each episode being 24 minutes long. If you want to know more about the future of the anime, then you should refer to our preview of ‘Date A Live’ Season 4.
Date A Live Season 3 Plot:
About 30 years ago, East Asia was rattled by explosions called “spacequakes” that took the life of over 150 million people. Soon, every scientist tries to decipher the mysteries of these naturally occurring explosions, only to later give up and realize that it’s unexplainable. Every year these “spacequakes” keep coming back and again take the lives of millions of humans who remain clueless about it.
This is where a Tokyo-based high school student named Shidou Itsuka comes into the picture. He is simply a regular school going kid who has a little sister named Kotori. But his simple life is soon turned upside down when one day, Tokyo experiences one of those “spacequakes” and Shidou has to rush into all the chaos to save his little sister. Amid all the destruction, he finds a strange girl who he later finds out is a very powerful spirit. It is her arrival on Earth that causes these spacequakes and destroys everything nearby.
Soon after this, Shidou is rescued by an anti-spirit squad that is led by his sister. His sister tells him that the only way one can destroy a particular spirit is either by exterminating it or by making it fall in love. To save humanity, Shidou takes it upon himself to make the spirit fall in love with him and starts to learn all the rules that are involved in dating a spirit. He then becomes a prominent part of the anti-spirit organization and is pretty much mankind’s last hope. What follows is a series of adventures that Shidou goes through as he starts dating random spirits and tries to make them fall in love with him. A lot of times, this results in hilarious situations and at the same time, also proves to be life-threatening for Shidou.
Date A Live Season 3 Review:
The story of season 3 returns with a very familiar formula where the main protagonist Shido tries to seal spirits to his body. The first arc picked up in this season involves Natsumi, who is the seventh spirit. She tries to play all kinds of mind games on Shido and his friends and throws tantrums for no apparent reason. The entire first half of this season just gets more and more stupid with Natsumi’s childish antics. The second half takes a more serious tone and introduces an old character named Origami. Again, even this half of the anime lacks proper character development but is still more entertaining than the first half with its witty dialogues and goofy interactions between Shido and Origami. There are certain emotional moments in the second half but they do not come naturally and it feels like they’re being shoved down the viewer’s throat.
Regarding the characters, as mentioned earlier, this season focuses mostly on a new one named Natsumi and also an old character named Origami. Natsume is an unlikable character and her very presence in the show becomes really annoying after a point of time. However, the part where Origami is introduced is even more disappointing because this is the arc you have high expectations from. The overall development of Origami falls flat despite all the potential that all of it had. The other supporting characters are just mere benchwarmers who add little to no value to the overarching storyline.
Coming from J.C Staff that is known for creating some memorable anime shows like ‘Toradora!‘ and ‘Maid-Sama‘, expectations were quite high from the beginning itself. And though ‘Date A Live’ has never been known for having impressive animation, the first two seasons had their own above average moments in this department. But in this season, something seems to be very off right from the first episode. The character movements are not at all subtle and even their detailing seems to be very inaccurate. As bad as the plot of the anime may seem, the animation style degrades it even further with its lack of appropriate themes and colors. The voice acting is pretty good and even the soundtracks are not too bad. But when compared with the previous seasons, the soundtracks are again below the show’s standards but this flaw can certainly be overlooked.
Overall, it’s depressing to see how a series which was once really enjoyable has now turned into a chore. If you have watched the previous installments of ‘Date A Live’, then simply out of curiosity, you’ll probably go ahead and watch this season. But I personally would not recommend this to anyone and I hope that if there is more of this anime, the Studio will make an attempt to learn from its mistakes and give us something better. On a scale of 1 to 10, I would only give this one a 6 because I somehow managed to finish off the entire season. Also, I’m being a little biased here because I really enjoyed the first season and I still see some potential in it.
Date A Live Season 3 English Dub:
You can find the English Dub of ‘Date A Live’ Season 3 on Funimation. And if you’re more into watching the Subbed versions of anime, then you can even find that on the same website.
Read More: Sword Art Online Season 3 Review