Delicious In Dungeon Episode 12: Resurrection



Well, with Delicious In Dungeon episode 12 we’ve finally reached the tipping point- both in episode count and story. In a sense, it’s sort of an anticlimactic episode as Falin is finally revived to rather little fanfare or narrative exposé, but Trigger be damned if they didn’t make it an incredible episode for a handful of reasons. First of all, the shift in art style/character models? Absolutely incredible. Stunning decision that paid off in spades, the entire tone of the episode turned on its head and was completely dominated by the air that was provided by it. To that end, I’m sure that the larger-than-normal staff list for the top of the episode is to thank for that.

It’s a really interesting mix of younger Trigger staff that’s been paired with older veterans, and I think that mix really helps the younger staff bring out the most of their creativity thanks to the support of the old hands. For example, Kiyota Chiho was the storyboarder and episode director for this episode- both being first-time credits. Alongside them though, they had Trigger mainstay Shimodaira Yuuichi as well as Gainax-turned-Trigger veteran Ootsuka Masahiko for episode direction. Similarly, with animation direction you see staff like Yoshigaki Yuusuke and Sakamoto Masaru, supporting greener ADs in Gunyasu Shunpei and Chida Takafumi. It’s a mix that all be ensures a high level of quality, but evidently has left more than enough breathing room for fresh creativity and freedom.

After all, it wasn’t just the resurrection scene that saw disparate character models in the episode. It’s a surprisingly healthy mix, with the staff recognizing that going crazy for the entirety of the episode weakens its appeal. So instead, they sparingly disperse their creative work in the episode, and it pays off really well. For example, there’s some scenes where the model changes are very subtle to convey very nuanced emotions and reactions. Then of course, there’s the times where they really play it up to sell the viewer on stronger feelings. It’s a lot of work from a creative standpoint, really, and it does really well within the episode. I think my favorite example of this is how much they play up Marcille’s elf blood in her design. They do a lot of subtle work through her conversation about using forbidden magic to resurrect Falin to separate her from Laios and the party in a visual sense. Of course, she’s always distanced from them (which is great boards from Kiyota), but most notably her design language shifts to play up her elven features. It’s really really great work that adds a great deal of nuance to the experience.

Also, speaking of boards, for a first timer Kiyota has done a really good job. I don’t think that it’s anything quite “out of this world” for the entirety of the episode, but they have a very clear and strong vision that’s applied really well within the episode. They do really great work with character blocking to try and keep cuts to a minimum, they have really solid awareness of space and obstructions and use that to make very pleasing scenes, and they’re really quite aware of flat angles and tend to avoid them. Honestly speaking, Kiyota Chiho has a lot of potential as a storyboarder, so I’d definitely say they’re a staff member to keep your eyes on. Anyways! The main reason I wanted to bring storyboards up was to spread the Farcille gospel. What was a few small panels in the manga is a whole scene in the anime that just screams of sexual and romantic tension between the pair, and I absolutely love it. Kiyota knows what fans want and entirely delivers on it. Also, while a little risque to share in detail, I thought Marcille’s character acting in the bath when she stood up was really good. There’s actually quite a few moments that partake in that sort of more subdued but still expressive interaction in the episode.

And lastly, just a bit of a chat on the key animators for the episode. I think many would be surprised to find out just how fresh the animators on this episode are. It looks and moves really great, but all the top credited key animators for the episode only have a handful of credits to their name. It’s really a testament to the impressive management and organization of Trigger as a studio that they’re able to put such fresh animators in such large positions and have them perform so well.

Though, of course, that doesn’t mean it’s all new animators. Ichicgo Kanno, for example, is rather high up the KA ladder for Delicious In Dungeon episode 12. In fact, it’s around Kanno’s credit that the experience of the animators begins to shift towards more seasoned staff. It’s very interesting to see, as it points towards the newer staff getting more cuts, but ones that are less intense or important while more experience staff see fewer but more important cuts. Of course, until you get towards the bottom and get more green staff that are only doing a few cuts due to experience.

Anyways, it’s smart management and resource usage that allowed the episode to really shine where it needed to. I just wish Trigger would share a few more keyframes. Kanno’s is absolutely stunning, but there’s plenty of others that I’d love to see still.

So Delicious In Dungeon episode 12 might not be able to live up to the insane work of the resurrection sequence, but overall I think it’s a great display from a group of greener staff looking to gain valuable experience with Trigger. Kiyota’s boards were surprisingly strong and well defined, animation directors like Gunyasu Shunpei continue to flex their ability despite their inexperience, and there’s plenty of great work on display from the newer key animators. All in all, it’s a very solid episode to serve as the halfway point for the season and the story.

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