Who would have thought that a television show about a group of young girls travelling the country on motorcycles would speak to my cinematic palate so much?
Rolling Girls is everything I want in a show, it has a colorful, bright aesthetic, a unique and well crafted narrative setup, and the cutest little birds that I have ever seen in a show. LOOK AT THESE THINGS. The first time that I saw them, my heart grew several sizes like the Grinch.
Visual aesthetic. Every episode, Rolling Girls EXPLODES onto the screen, and for the next 20ish minutes manages to cement my concentration to it in a way that very few shows manage to do. From the bright and colorful character designs, to the gorgeous watercolor backgrounds, Rolling Girls is a visual treat.
There are so many diverse and unique character designs, and so many bizarre concepts. A tea-themed superhero? Rolling Girls. A girl who fights using a massive, ribbon-clad, safety pin? Rolling Girls. A buff mustachioed man who literally punches a motorcycle that is flying? Rolling Girls. Two rivals that do battle via a ramen eating contest? Rolling Girls.
The creators of this show have managed to cultivate a fantastic air of obscurity. That really explores so many interesting and quirky concepts. A city filled with hundreds of tiny roombas that also double as alarms if triggered, to prevent thievery.
Narrative. Rolling Girls is an episodic show, which normally I wouldn’t be super into. I am normally not a huge fan of episodic shows, unless they are done right. For example, Cowboy Bebop uses its episodic format to each cover different genres, tones, and ideas to develop its characters. But, it is how Rolling Girls uses this episodic narrative to it’s advantage that really makes it something special.
I am a sucker for road stories. As a matter of fact (I will probably make another post about this sometime to fully flesh it out) I have always loved road stories. Adventures like Book of Eli, or Kino’s Journey or even The Last of Us. There is something that is so cool to be about a story that revolves more around a journey itself, and what happens along the way, than the destination.
The first half of Gurren Lagann manages to capture this perfectly, we see our characters grow and expand in their relationships, skillset, and maturity as they travel. And, more importantly, through travel, they are forced to interact with one another and the world around them, creating an interesting microcosm for a narrative.
Rolling Girls does the same, and it’s awesome. The travelling narrative of the show allows the characters to travel the vibrant world of the show and explore the many eccentricities of it. And the episodic nature of the show allows us to experience different portions of this incredible world with emphasis, as each area that the girls encounter contains from one to two episodes of depth and exploration into the setting.
I am not even halfway into the season, so the show could change, and my opinion could change. Worse things have happened, they messed Death Note’s final portion up didn’t they?
But so far, I am enamored. I have found an incredibly ranging and diverse world, filled with interesting and dynamic characters. And I cannot wait to explore the rest of this world with the Rolling Girls.