Anime Best in Show

Review: Campione! Episode 1 Best in Show

Quick Summary

In Campione! episode 1, “Tale of the Beginning,” Godou Kusanagi was doing his best to return a stone tablet that his grandfather left him. The trouble was, he was Japanese, and he had had to travel to Italy — and he had no clue how to speak Italian. So it was not in the least bit surprising that he was confused when a devastatingly beautiful blonde woman in an elaborate red dress spoke angrily to him. When he tried to introduce himself, she realized he couldn’t speak Italian. So she switched to Japanese. But instead of making things better, she told him to hand over the “grimoire” and pulled a knife to emphasize her “request.” She even had the audacity to act insulted when he asked if this was a mugging! But then something happened that broke their standoff — and changed the course of Godou’s life forever.

Note: This post may include spoilers, so be cautious.

Best Moment in the Show

Erica did not approve of Godou’s grandfather’s taste in women. Or activities. Or much of anything, for that matter… Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

This is one of those shows that if you don’t like the characters, the whole thing falls apart — into quite the steaming heap. But I loved the characters. Almost all of them, in fact. So this is one of those series I can watch over and over. It’s not No Game No Life, but I still like it. I mean, where else can I get my mythology fix? And Erica Blandelli is the archetype for one of my most cherished character types: A powerful, indomitable woman who makes her own decisions and is perfectly capable of enacting them.

My Best in Show moment for this episode is one of the moments that shows just how in charge Erica can be. She had just gotten done facing off against a rogue god. To be more precise, Godou had just caught her as the force of the rogue god threw her from the pulverized roof (though I’m pretty sure she would have survived the fall without his help). The rogue god suddenly disappeared, as rogue gods do, and the next thing we know, Erica is sitting beside Godou at a train station. She was explaining some of the finer points of the encounter to him, and she seemed a little surprised an impatient that he knew so little.

Sidebar: Almost every show that deals with this topic has its own explanation for why most humans can’t see the supernatural beings. In Campione!, humans without magic perceive the gods’ devastation as natural disasters. I thought that was kinda cool.

At the end of the explanation, she asked him how he knew so little, yet possessed a grimoire of such power. When he said he was trying to return it to Lucretia Zola, Erica was outraged. She asked why he had something from that “Witch of Sardinia.”

Erica was surprised Godou had such a power grimoire but absolutely no idea of its history or power. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

Godou’s answer that she had given it to his grandfather when he was younger — who was probably was dating Lucretia at the time.

“Your grandfather is quite sociable, then,” she quipped (07:20).

In the face of her scorn, he didn’t wither. He asked, “Why are you looking at me?”

They looked and sounded like a bickering old couple! They were already so comfortable with each other, though they didn’t know it, that they could have an exchange like that as if it were nothing unusual.

Even though I know what’s coming (I’m not really sure how many times I’ve watched this…), I really enjoy watching their chemistry as their relationship develops.

What did you think of the mythology in this episode? What was your Best in Show moment? Let me know in the comments!

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8 thoughts on “Review: Campione! Episode 1 Best in Show

  1. I remember dropping this show really early in its first episode. I don’t remember anything about it, and I certainly haven’t seen enough to judge it. I might like it if I ever came back to it, but then again, more likely, I might not.

    I looked it up, and to my surprise the show aired in summer 2012. I thought the show was older. 2010, or 2011. It feels ages ago, but the show’s younger than Madoka or Steins;Gate (2011 was the year watching weekly anime became routine. I started either in Fall 2009, or Winter 2010.) I thought the show was one of the first dropped, but that can’t be the case if it aired that late.

    1. This review made me curious about how I fair with your episode guides. I’ll loosely rank them on affection, with tier breaks added by intuiton (I kept franchises together, except for Asterisk war, where my enjoyment level waried drastically between seasons):

      Concrete Revolutio
      Fruits Basket
      Made in Abyss
      ***
      Otome Youkai Zakuro
      Alice to Zouroku
      Planet With
      The Devil is a Parttimer
      Ancient Magus Bride
      Zombieland Saga
      Astra Lost in Space
      Re:Creators
      ***
      Fire Force
      In/Spectre
      Somali and the Forest Spirit
      The Promised Neverland
      Midnight Occult Civil Service
      Dimension W
      Blue Exorcist (Kyoto Saga)
      ***
      C3 (CubeXCursedXCurious)
      Record of Grancrest War
      Faerie Gone
      One Punch Man
      Asterisk War Season 1
      To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts
      Black Bullet
      Arpeggio of Blue Steel
      Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress
      ***
      Gate
      Goblin Slayer
      Asterisk War Season 2

      Dropped: Bubuki/Buranki (after the second or third episode), Chivalry of a Failed Knight (Dropped, episode 2, but still on my watch list – I dropped it because of Asterisk War whiplash; couldn’t remember what happened in which show), Darwins Game (almost immediately after the first episode started), Demon Slayer (two episodes in; motion sickness), Dies Irae (dropped almost immediately), Dr. Stone (a few episodes in), Izetta (a few episodes in), Spec Ops Magical Girl Asuka (after the torture episode with subsequent reversal), Saga of Tanya the Evil (photosensitivity issue in the God scenes; potential motionsickness in aearial combat, but I didn’t last long enough because of the other issue), Taboo Tattoo (after 1.5 episodes),

      Never Watched: Caligula, D.Gray Man Hallow,

      Interestingly, there are quite a few shows I really liked, but also quite a few I dropped.

      1. Wow! I’m impressed and pleased you went through the whole list!

        Generally, I think my enjoyment would breakdown along similar lines, with only a couple of exceptions. I’d put Re:CREATORS at the top. I’d move Asterisk War Season 2 and Gate up a bit, too.

        It’s gotta be tough when you have to drop a series like Tanya the Evil. It happened to me once Hand Shakers. I got 15 seconds into the first episode and had to bail.

        I wish I could say you should give Dies Irae another chance. I can’t.

        I should have bailed on Taboo Tattoo. Staying until the last episode added nothing to my life.

        I did like Izetta. It had its ups and downs, but I really liked the relationship between Izetta and Finé.

        I can’t really recommend you try Caligula. I’m not sure how enjoyable D.Gray Man Hallow is without the origianl series; there were a lot of interdependencies.

        I appreciate you taking the time to go through the list and share you perspective!

    2. Like Railgunfan75 and I were saying, the appeal is the mythology and the characters. If they don’t grab you in the first episode, I doubt anything later would change that opinion.

      For whatever reason, it’s one of those shows I watch again and again.

  2. Wow this brings me back. This was a series that I watched way back in my early anime days and I enjoyed it. The real hook is the interesting concept with its mythology that it brings to the table. The characters are pretty solid as well. I was actually just thinking about this show the other day coincidentally enough and am considering giving it a rewatch at some point.

    1. “The real hook is the interesting concept with its mythology that it brings to the table.”

      I’ve always enjoyed mythology. I thought how they applied it in this series was particularly cool — almost like weaponizing it!

      “The characters are pretty solid as well.”

      I thought so, too. Godou’s not the prototypical male harem lead; Eric’s not exactly the prototypical harem member, either! And the characters we meet starting next episode have their own charms!

      “am considering giving it a rewatch at some point.”

      Cool!

    1. There’s quite a lot! And you know, I think it’s part of the show’s charm! It’s a charmingly wholesome fanservice. It fits the plot perfectly. Erica certainly uses it to her advantage!

Please let me know what you think!

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