|A David vs Goliath matchup for most of the show, interesting and unique mech units, solid CG for the Objects, very steady in quality
|Somewhat static relationships, fanservice and main characters perversions can get silly at times
Heavy Object is a show that has a solid premise and pretty much just goes with it for the entirety of its 2-cour run. Very much a David vs Goliath setup taken to some interesting extremes. The main character Qwenthur dealing with his challenges with the idea that anything made by human hands can be destroyed by them. The main focus of the show was how Qwenthur and his friend Havia would survive these battles against Objects and come out of it victorious. They had to use their heads, take a lot of risks, and be fairly lucky to pull it off as often as they did.
When I think about it the show wasn’t all that complicated. The world had been utterly changed by the creation of these Objects. Giant weapons that were basically impervious to modern militaries. Their effectiveness being so overwhelming that the world eventually fractured into different factions. All sides engaging in wars almost solely involving Objects. Considered a “clean war” since armies were basically not the focus anymore.
If your object won? Then you won that conflict. If you lost? Then the support ‘army’ for that Object surrendered and fled the area. A very simple kind of conflict. But one that only appears that way on the surface and only so long as everyone follows the informal rules of war. The second a faction decides they don’t want to cooperate then things could turn into horror stories. A massive weapon that no one at the scene is in a position to stop or deal with. That is the reality that Qwenthur and Havia had to deal with. A view of war that if they wanted to survive certain situations that they would have to shatter. After all when people are comfortable with a form of war that keeps them out of harm’s way, they might not be that pleased with people who would dare to challenge the status quo.
The world view is pretty focused throughout the show. Qwenthur and Havia are basically soldiers (Qwenthur is more a student studying with the military but whatever). They are going to battlefields, dealing major conflicts between factions, we don’t get to see much about the world they are living in. We have some idea how the world is with this breakup, but the show doesn’t go there often. All of it is through the lens of people in the military fighting against other military threats. That is the world the story focuses in. Which is fine. It’s good to just see how Objects have both changed and not changed anything with the military.
The story can easily be broken down into a few parts. Qwenthur, Havia, Milinda and their group go into a region. There is some political situation or military problem involved, an Object shows up, Qwenthur and Havia are the only ones who can be used (probably going against orders) to take care of this situation because they want to save some lives. The key thing I think is that these are characters who don’t want to let people die.
Whether it’s one of their allies or innocent people caught in the middle between Objects, they don’t want to sit around and let bad things happen. So they get into it, they take risks, struggle and figure out a way to stop these Objects. Stopping these weapons of war that people have thought couldn’t be defeated by anything other than an Object. That is the show. You get different story arcs, different side characters pop in, but that is the show in a nutshell and that is what you get each time. Battlefield, Object, figure out how to stop it and save lives. Which is fine. The show has a formula and it works that formula.
And I do think the Objects themselves stood out. Almost always we have mechs in anime that are either planes or humanoid. Maybe sometimes a show will have those and a non-human type of unit, but almost always those two. This show? It’s just the Objects. Sure you have normal fighter jets, but they honestly are just scout planes. Objects are the war unit. These big ball-like machines that roll around. The show takes time to set them up so it makes sense why Objects took over and why they have to be Objects to use those kind of weapons. The armor, the weapons, the power source, it all requires an Object in order to come together. So that does work out nicely.
The cast is actually pretty small in terms of main characters. You have primarily Qwenthur and Havia. They are the guys who quickly become great friends as they are forced into these situations. Becoming a duo that take on some crazy situations. Partners in that best friend kind of way. Two guys who can just trust each other and get the job done. Not that they always get along. Plenty of times Havia gets fed up with Qwenthur’s almost white knight personality of having to put them in danger in order to save the day or save the girl.
Qwenthur is very much the hero of the story. Havia may be joking when he often calls him “knight-sama” but that’s really the case. Qwenthur can’t back off or abandon the people he wants to save. All the more so when there is a female character like Milinda in jeopardy. Guy just has his beliefs on what he can and can’t allow. Can certainly say he’s the type that won’t let girls in trouble die. If he sees them and knows them all the more so. Qwenthur in some ways really is a genius at thinking outside the box. He knows and has studied Objects so he does have some technical knowledge when combined with some boldness can allow him to figure out solutions. He really is a pretty clever guy, able to put together a lot of information and find a slim hope of survival against monstrous Objects.
Of course Qwenthur can also be a pervert. Something both he and Havia share. Especially early on he can easily get distracted by a cute girl or various parts of said girl during a crisis. Sometimes this can lead to some comedy and other times unnecessary fanservice. Qwenthur can be both a likable guy and kind of frustrating when he takes it too far. But he is still a very good guy and someone I enjoyed following in the show.
Havia is from a different social background than Qwenthur. For certain reasons he is a son of a noble family in the military, trying to make a name for himself. In some ways you could call him the brawns of this team. But it’s not like Havia is a fool, he’s just not an engineer. He knows his world from his life and the military training he’s gotten to this point. So he’s a better shot than Qwenthur, is a bit more tactical as well. Kind of a voice of reason or caution to Qwenthur’s crazy plans. Qwenthur can get a bit carried away and focused on what he’s doing and not realize all the dangers around him. It’s good to have a Havia around to even things out.
The leading lady for the show is Milinda, but better known as Princess. An Elite which is the title of those who pilot the Objects. She is considered the Princess of the squad Havia and Qwenthur are a part of. Piloting an old Gen 1 Object which is considered an all-rounder, but also somewhat inferior to specialized Gen 2s. She is a pretty nice character. A somewhat innocent type since she has been raised and lived specifically to pilot her Object “Baby Magnum.” Someone who has been fighting alone on the front line for a long time. She of course develops an interest in the MC Qwenthur along the way. Milinda can be a bit reckless on the battlefield but has a lot of skill. She’s the type desperate to protect those that are behind her, feeling the weight of responsibility and the risk of fighting other Objects. Milinda can get heated, jealous, and be a bit immature at times. But at her core she’s still a very kind person.
The last character that is often important to the story is the commander of this unit Frolaytia. A busty female commander who doesn’t mind using her looks to tease her troops though wouldn’t actually cross any lines. She can be relied on in a pinch and does have a lot of faith in Qwenthur and Havia. But she also knows their negative qualities so she can be more than willing to get on their cases when their perverted sides show off. She just has the tough job of dealing with superiors who generally aren’t approving of how Qwenthur and Havia shake up the expected means of fighting a war.
The show is pretty split visually between the drawn characters and the CG Objects. Honestly I think the Objects look pretty good. The CG works and the combat between Objects is fun to watch. That isn’t the focus of the show, but I still enjoy seeing these weapons of war go at each other. The Objects have a lot of variety in terms of the types that the main cast go up against. The main cast looks pretty good. The animation isn’t all that bad. I’d say it’s a pretty average looking show. A lot of the action is around the Objects, but there is some combat for the main cast as well that they deal with. A lot of CG explosions. There is a lot of fanservice early on in the show. It does actually pull back a bit and focuses more on the story as the show goes on, minus a few parts.
I did enjoy the OP/ED combination for this series. The OP songs are both pretty similar honestly. But they are both pretty action packed so I’m ok with that, very energetic songs. While the EDs are both softer songs that focus on Milinda moments. The songs were alright in the series, but they didn’t stick with me that much. Nothing that seemed to be a bad choice though.
In the end, Heavy Object is a pretty solid 2-cour series. The show ends on an original arc, but one that I think does fit within the structure of the series. It’s a nice way to finish off and feels kind of like the story has come full circle and showing the impact the story has had on many lives. I won’t say there is a lot of focus on romantic involvement so don’t expect that going in. The focus really is on the Objects, their impact on war and the world, and how the main characters take them on. There is some solid character reveals that you get along the way that explains why Qwenthur, Havia, and Frolaytia are the way they are. It’s just that different arcs focus on different characters.
I would say in the end this is a good show. Maybe not a great show, but it is very consistent. Each arc I think is on the whole on the same level as the one before it. The show just continues to give good and enjoyable episodes. This was a show that was very much a comfort show for me. I could always count on it to give me some interesting things to talk about and some good challenges for the main cast to overcome. It may not be one of the best anime I’ve ever seen, but it didn’t disappoint me. Definitely worth checking out if one is interested in unusual mechs that aren’t the usual Gundam-type and seeing humans overcoming incredible odds.
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