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RWBY Review

Posted by Nathan, 26 August 2013 · 3,767 views

Anime Animation Roosterteeth Monty Oum Awesome
RWBY (pronounced Ruby) is the latest series from Roosterteeth Productions, the creators of popular web series such as; Red vs Blue, a comedy series created in the Halo game engine now in its 11th season; RT Shorts, A series of skits featuring some of the Staff members; RT Podcast, formally known as the Drunk Tank and has topped the iTunes charts several times; and much more.

RWBY is a very different venture for Roosterteeth as it ventures into the anime style. Whether or not it is technically an anime (due to the fact that its not produced in Japan and is mostly CG animation) it is definitely worth watching. The show was thought up and directed by Monty Oum, who you may know as being the person who created Haloid, Dead Fantasy and responsible for most of the animation in the later seasons of Red vs Blue. Before the series had even started to air the show had already gathered a wide fan base and even cosplayers, not just because of the loyal fans of RoosterTeeth but also because of the 4 trailers that were released introducing each of the main characters.

So Talking about Characters

The show gets its name from the four main characters, four girls who each represent the colours Red, White, Black and Yellow. (Click on the characters name to see the trailer)
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  • Ruby Rose- The main character of the series and the first to be revealed through the trailers. She is a young girl who resembles Red Riding Hood. She wields a giant scythe that also functions as a sniper rifle. She is a really bright and cheerful character, but she is quite awkward and has difficulty interacting with people.
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  • Weiss Schnee - The Second character to be revealed, Weiss is young Heiress to a large company that seems to be pivotal to the series. Weiss uses a special rapier which has a revolving chamber that appears to give the sword different effects. Weiss acts very self entitled and important, and feels others should treat her in accordance with her stature.
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  • Blake Belladonna - Blake is the third character. Blake seems to be a very talented fighter and uses a katana, which can transform into a pistol on a chain that resembles a japanese sickle (kama). Blake is a mysterious character who is very quiet and reserved. As such we know very little about her at this stage in the series.
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  • Yang Xiao Long - Yang was the last of the main characters to be revealed through the trailers and is also Ruby's older sister. She uses gauntlets with barrels for bullets and can shoot explosive rounds when she punches. She is usually incredibly cheerful and confident and doesn't usually take things seriously. She clearly really cares for her little sister but her Brute Force also applies to the way she tries to help Ruby.
There are obviously many more characters, but I felt like introducing these characters is far more important, probably even more important than talking about the plot.


RWBY has an amazing Original Soundtrack by Jeff Williams who has done music for several Roosterteeth productions for the last several years. Up until the last trailer there was little to no dialogue but because of the way the music complemented the scenes it really wasn't necessary.

One of the main things RWBY is criticized for is its voice acting but personally I don't think the voice acting is that bad even if it is done by Roosterteeth Staff. I believe a lot of people formed their own vision of the characters and their personalities from the trailers and since the actual personalities didn't much up with what people had formed by themselves neither did the voices. Something that really supports this is that when Yangs trailer was released people were really disappointed by high pitched Ruby's voice was when she spoke for the first time saying it didn't match her character but obviously at that point we knew very little about her character and it turns out she's younger than the other characters and she's a chirpy and energetic character so a high pitched voice works fine.

The other reason people criticize the voice acting, at least from the anime fans, is that they are american voice actors not Japanese. This is a pretty stupid criticism to make since the company is American and the target audience are primarily from English speaking countries. There are a number of anime fans who suggest that because the Japanese voice actors are "better" (which is obviously subjective) the Japanese voice actors should do the voices in English as well, but if you've ever heard a Japanese voice actor trying to speak in English you will know how ridiculous that would be, I've watched non-dubbed anime where a character will say about one sentence in English and despite knowing very little about the Japanese language I feel like I would have had a better chance of understanding if they had just said it in their native language.

You also have to remember that despite Roosterteeth being over 10 years old and having over 40 employees they are still technically a small business and so they can't afford to hire voice actors for every character, especially since they produce so many different series.

Most episodes last for about 5 minutes (rather than the standard anime length of 22 minutes) and although it would be great if they were longer they do manage to fit a lot into those 5 minutes and still keep a good pace. Once again you have to remember that they are a relatively small company compared to most Anime companies, and again they have several different productions being released at once. The other thing to remember is that Production started months in advance and as this is a new production and such a different style to past ones that they could never have known it would be so popular, and it would have been a waste of time and effort if they were to produce 30 minute episodes that nobody watched.

Overall I really love this series, its probably my favourite Roosterteeth series and I'd recommend it to anyone who is slightly interested. One of the great things about it being produced outside of Japan is that the references are more likely to be understood by a western audience. I purposely didn't discuss the plot, simply because there is so little out at the moment and what I know of the plot doesn't really give a great indication of the kind of series this is, but it seems to fit into a similar genre as red vs blue with a lot of comedy moments but also an action based plot line.

Episodes are free to watch on Roosterteeth.com and as of recently Crunchyroll.com and new episodes are released every Friday and as of writing this there are 6 episodes so far. The DVD and Blu-Ray's are available for Pre-Order on Roosterteeth.com and will ship on November 12th (which I believe is the same day as the final episode) with a bunch of special features. I believe the full series will be about movie length somewhere around 90 minutes.

If your watching this series comment what you think of it (no spoilers) and if your interested but want to know more just ask and I'll be happy to answer.

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