Satomi IshiharaYoshihiro NishimuraAyame MisakiYuta Hiraoka
Attack on Titan: Counter Rockets
Also known as: Shingeki no Kyojin: Hangeki no Noroshi
Medium: webcast, series
Year: 2015
Director: Kimiyoshi Adachi, Yoshihiro Nishimura, Katsuro Onoue
Original creator: Hajime Isayama
Keywords: Attack on Titan, fantasy, didn't bother finishing it
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Actor: Maki Mizui, Rina Takeda, Shu Watanabe, Yuta Hiraoka, Satomi Ishihara, Ayame Misaki, Nanami Sakuraba
Format: 3-episode web series, each one running 30-40 minutes
Website category: Japanese SF
Review date: 21 February 2017
Shingeki no Kyojin
I couldn't take it. I got through the live-action movies and even managed to have fun with them, but this web series defeated me. It's the same cast in the same world, but worse. I managed to sit through five minutes of ep.1, then fast-forwarded through the rest of the half-hour episode and deleted the other two unseen.
The storyline's fine. What I saw in fast-forward involved Zoe Hange (Satomi Ishihara) experimenting with her two captured Titans, Sawney and Beane, after which she demonstrated the flying gear. That's fine. It's from the manga. Besides, theoretically Hange should have been a great character and the best source of comedy in what's otherwise a dour, horrific story.
The problem's Satomi Ishihara. I don't think it's all her fault, mind you. I also blame the director and the casting director. However the result is a girl valiantly trying to give a huge, blown-up-to-eleven performance that's so far beyond her capabilities that it's painful to watch. It's empty noise. There isn't even an attempt at a human being inside there. What's on screen is nothing more or less than an actress shouting because the director told her to. There's no significant difference between this and five-year-olds in a school nativity play. (It also doesn't help that her main co-star is Hiroki Hasegawa, but I actually found him tolerable because he's playing her straight man and giving lots of pained or baffled reactions rather than being smug.)
Had this actually starred the manga/anime Zoe Hange, of course, I'd have been all over it. It's amazing, now I think about it. This web series is an education in how drastically an actor can change one's response to a character. Unfortunately it achieves this by being, for me, literally unwatchable.