Berserk (2012) – Egg of the Supreme King
Its here folks! Finally after almost 20 years Berserk is back on our screen.
But Wait??!? This is not a continuation from the animated TV series of the 90s (which finished in arguability one of the most amazing yet frustrating finales ever!)
Animated Series Re-Told
Berserk 2012 is infact a retelling of the same animated TV series and pretty much starts from the same point as the original (The Golden Age story Arc) and for the most part is re-told frame for frame. All that is known right now is that we are to expect 3 Berserk feature length films (the second film is due to hit Japanese screens in a few weeks ) yet beyond that little more is really known.
True fans of Berserk (and those frustrated by the ending from the original series who felt the need to follow the story of Berserk via the mangas) will know the story well. At its most basic Berserk is the story of one man’s quest for power (Griffith ) and his control over another (Guts) as well as the respect he commands from his army (The infamous Band of the Hawk).
Yet there is much more to Berserk that this. The story is in fact very deep and includes many important sub-plots which help to build strong characters throughout the journey – Characters who you in fact care about no matter their ultimate motifs.
Fans of the anime will also tell you how violence and dark the original manga is (so be warned!), This film follows suit with moments of violence but nothing in the same league as the maga.
This film is for a new generation of fans
Berserk 2012 was not made for the ‘fans’ of the anime/manga. Its obvious from the get go that this Berserk is for a potential new audience.
The expectation is that those unfamiliar with the Berserk universe will feel comfortable watching the story of ‘The Band of the Hawk’ , watching how they grow and gain power as well as the developing relationship between the two leads (Guts and Griffith). Yet those of us who already have a firm understanding of Berserk may feel a little disappointed that this ‘new’ Berserk doesn’t actually bring anything ‘new’.
Yes the animation is obviously improved and in essence the flow of the story is better, but many parts of the animation are little more than frame for frame re-enactments from the TV series (so why did it take so long to bring Berserk back to our screens ? ).
Enjoyable , but not because it is NEW – but because it is the SAME
Don’t get me wrong, I fully enjoyed this Berserk, but not because it felt ‘new’. This felt very much like seeing a old friend for the first time in years – and whilst watching this Berserk I couldn’t help but think about all the great things which are ‘going to happen’ instead of enjoying the moments as they occur.
Deep down I also have this worry about the future of Berserk – will this new re-telling simply go 1 volume further than where the original animation left off or (as many are expecting) will these three films be the backbone for a new future animated series to continue the story (the mangas are already more than 33 Volumes – there is a lot of source material to play around with for years to come!).
But is Berserk here for the long term ? Does anyone really know?
No one really knows what will happen – a lot is down to the success of these movies – which so far have done very well indeed.
Regarding the first film (Egg of the Supreme King) – for fans we are once again at the ‘Golden Age arc’. Its the telling of the rise of the ‘Band of the Hawk’. The first film follows the first 10 episodes from the animation very closely , with the final scene pretty much being the final moments from episode 10. For those who followed the manga we are pretty much starting from Volume 3/4.
Great film for new comers, Good film for Fans
I was fortunate to have watched this film along with many who have never watched the original series or read the mangas before. The problem with Berserk for many of them was that whilst the film was good (very good in fact), there really wasn’t too much there for them to ‘really’ want to see what happens next. Of course the film ends on a cliffhanger but not one to really wet your appetite for more . This of course is a shame as there is ‘alot’ more.
For Berserk it really is all about the story and cutting the film into 3 parts with relatively long periods of time between their release could end up being its downfall.
Once again I’m really happy to see Berserk back on our screens again, the story is more than strong enough to deserve to be re-watched again and again.
I still worry about Berserk
But deep down I have this worry that the future of Berserk is once again not safe and once the dust is settled we may once again run into the same problem of watching an unfinished product. As such, for those who really want to understand the Berserk universe and really encourage you to read the mangas.
Berserk is arguable the greatest manga story ever told. Let the film wet our appetite and then go out there and get the first 3 volumes of Berserk. (The first 3 volumes give you a taste of what is going to happen and how the world of Guts and Griffith is going to be turned upside down! – I can only hope that the films or eventual series – get the chance to visual this in the future).
Welcome back Berserk – But lets hope its not just a passing visit!
Berserk (2012) – Egg of the Supreme King,