Ahem. So, I just sat down to watch Sword of Storms tonight...
First off. Doug Jones has officially impressed me. I went in thinking Ron Perlman would be the usual standout voice actor on this, and he was, but Doug just owns the floor every time he speaks. Of all the characters in this. Doug (and Gilpin as Kate) stood out as really bringing their respective characters to life. Selma, not so much. Actually, I almost wish Sherman's voice was recast. That's how much I liked Selma's performance in this.
The other standouts in this show were the music by Drake and sound effects. Oh, the sound effects. I watched this on a booming sound system and a good sized plasma and boy was it rocking. Drakes score just elevated every scene, and I like how he wove in his own renditions of the live action music. Amazing effort.
The sound effects were also stellar. I really love the spider scene, as example. Oh, and the Kappa fight sequence rocks in everyway. Back to the Spiders. The queen's laugh in surround sound is just creepy and delicious. It sounds like she has multiple vocal cords. Kind of like that blue alien opera singer in Fifth Element or the similar alien on Galactica. Also, Hellboy's punches really have oomph. The japanese heads sequence is a great example of this.
The writing. Started off real shaky with, I thought some dialog scenes that didn't work. They felt thrown in. Pacing was off. It just felt wrong. This all changes once Hellboy picks up the sword and heads out on his adventure. It seems like the writing team was feeling more comfortable in their world. I really enjoyed the story by it's conclusion. Lots of great action. Kappa scene was super. Oh, and I love that the comics relationships were brought back into this. Abe/Liz, Kate/Hellboy. Good going Tad.
So, I loved this for the most part. Which brings me to my only real problem with this movie; besides Selma...the animation quality.
I was real excited when I first read that Madhouse was involved with this. They've done some of the best animation work - Memories, Gunslinger Girl, Animatrix, Ninja Scroll, Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust, the list goes on. I thought the Comicon footage was great, and that sequence looks even better in person, but Sword of Storms doesn't hold up that same quality overall. Animations from moment to moment feel uneven, Hellboy especially feels off many a time. For some reason the other characters look pretty good though.
Anyway, those were my gripes. I still loved the show overall and I certainly forgive much of my problems in hopes that it was just the learning curve. Hopefully the second movie will fix some of these little problems. Maybe not Selma, but I can wish.
So, I'm dying to read what everyone else thinks of the show. I think I'll go and play through the credits to hear Drakes score again.
Bravo Tad. Can't wait for the next installment.