From the time this show was announced it didn’t sound terribly exciting, but the Avatar connection was enough for me to wait and watch the trailer. I liked the art style and the show was coming out soon. The trailer looked bland and the animation cheap but I did like the celshaded look. So with only 9 episodes released so far for Book 1 let’s take a look back at The Dragon Prince so far. Netflix normally splits their animated shows in two to make the wait shorter so I’ll update review as soon as the second part of Book 1 (or if they call it Book 2) is released.
My first question I had for the show is why the characters in this fantasy world wearing such boring outfits? What happened to cool stylized designs? I mean, it’s a high fantasy show, what the hell are you doing that a high fantasy character designs are boring? The world is rather boring at times with some boring character designs, clothes, animals etc. It’s not always like these as it does have some cool designs from time to time but not enough as say Avatar.
The game does look like a PS2 FMV cutscene and I”m not one to make those references lightly as they normally annoy me. I like that though as it has a unique charm and I’m a sucker for celshaded CG animation. It almost feels like a high budget version of those low budget DTVs from the 00’s. The animation seems to lag at times which is odd to see it in a more professional production but it gave it a unique look at least at first.
The main cast is pretty cool though and the story is interesting, it’s not tapping full to the potential of this fantasy world but the potential is there. Callum, Ezran and Rayla are all interesting and there’s some world building with the 5 human nations and the other races that live in Xadia. The charm of characters like those found in Avatar or Wakfu is not there but I hope we get to see more like that.
I’m hoping it stops being so choppy as it often felt like a stop motion cartoon, it was cool in a retro nostalgic way but it’s distracting. I also hope they go a little bit crazier with the character designs and creatures int he world and take full advantage of the high fantasy setting which they didn’t seemt o be doing as much. Even these first 9 episodes are pretty entertaining with all these faults and I can’t wait to see more.
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