Created by Monty Oum and premiering in 2013, RWBY is a web series that follows the story of Ruby Rose, a girl who has made it her life goal to become a huntress, somebody who spends most of their time fighting the creatures of Grimm, a race of unintelligent shadow creatures that want nothing more than to rid the world of humanity. Those seem to be some pretty common goals in this world oddly. After displaying her incredible talent with weapon of choice, the giant red scythe with a gun attachment for no other reason than pure awesome, Professor Ozpin lets her attend his school,Hogwarts Beacon Academy, where instead of subjects like math and English, students get to train in the art of monster hunting! They still teach history though, I guess because we need exposition whenever possible.
At this school Ruby becomes the leader of her own team of hunters, Team RWBY, made up of her friends Weiss Schnee, the heiress to a company that basically owns just about everything from weapon fuel to toothpaste, Yang Xiao Long, Ruby’s sister who will end your life, spend years searching the globe for an artifact to bring you back to life, then end your life a second time if you mess with her hair, and Blake Belladonna, the character who is pretty much impossible to talk about without spoiling one of the biggest plot twists in the whole show! There’s also another team, Team JNPR, lead by Jaune Arc, the inexperienced but strong fighter, and also featuring Nora Valkyrie, the comic relief that was clearly the result of some lab accident where they gave Pinkie Pie from My Little Pony the powers of Thor, Pyrrha Nikos, a world-famous fighter and part time cereal mascot who really just wants to be considered normal, and Lie Ren, Nora’s best friend since childhood that can best be described as the team ninja.
I feel like it should be noted that just about every single character in this show is loosely based on something else. Generally they’re fairy tales, like Ruby’s inspirations fromLittle Red Riding Hood and Glynda Goodwitch’s inspirations from something so obvious that I feel sorry for your lack of a childhood if you don’t get it, but there’s also inspirations from classic literature, poems, historical figures, Dr. Seuss books, internet memes, and probably even more that just haven’t been confirmed yet! Oh yes, internet memes. You won’t believe it when you see the character literally named Neon Katt.
Now that I’m done discussing all of the story that I can say without spoiling anything big, the main characters, and the ridiculous origins of some aspects of the world, (Oh wait, one more! The map of this fictional world was based on ketchup stains from a napkin! Seriously.) Now to discuss some of the artistic parts of the series. First of all, I must say that there was never a single moment while I was watching this show that I was bored of the story. That should definitely count for something. The show also has a perfect mix of drama, action, and comedy, which is very welcome. The animation on the other hand was not the greatest in the first volume (they didn’t even bother making the extras look like more than shadows), but it got much better in the second and third volumes, and the action scenes were never not amazing looking. It’s good to note that this show is animated almost entirely with three-dimensional models, which is uncommon with webshows. Usually people stick to live action or 2D flash animation, but they went with 3D animation for this show, which is a lot harder to do and is still done well. The voice acting was always really good. The actors are encouraged to ad-lib certain lines, which frequently end up with the funniest and most memorable moments in the show.
Then there’s the music. Let’s see, how do I accurately describe the music in this show… it has some of the greatest music I’ve ever heard from a show that isn’t technically a musical. All of the songs, including the score, are enjoyable to listen to on their own, which is something I don’t normally say about a lot of things. All of the score perfectly fits with what’s going on; it’s loud and upbeat for the action scenes, quiet and calm in the dramatic scenes, and comical in the… comical scenes. I don’t know a better way to say that. The lyrical songs are even better. Even though quite often there’s dialogue and sound effects playing over it, if you actually stop and listen to the songs either in the episodes or on the soundtrack, they usually a lot about the characters’ backstories and feelings. I don’t listen to soundtracks a lot, but after seeing this show I immediately added all the songs to Spotify.
Overall this is a really great show. The story is interesting with characters that really make you care what’s going to happen to them and writing that perfectly balances action, drama, and comedy. Add to that great-looking visuals and amazing music and you’ve got yourself a show that deserves a 9 out of 10. Why are you not watching this right now? Go, as soon as you can!