Sunday, April 20, 2014

Spotlight: Digimon Frontier

There are no stops on this train!

Welcome one! Welcome all!

Today’s Spotlight, Digimon Frontier!

Also known as What if Digimon was a Sentai?

Yeah, I'm totally late with this. Funny thing about that. This post was ready more than a week ago. I have just been away from my main computer for a while. 

The Story

Piedmon has better Clown Tricks

Stop me if you have heard this one before, a group of kids get called to another world where they have adventures and fight evil. Sounds familiar right?

Much like Tamers, Frontier takes places in a different universe. There’ll be no Tamer characters this season, sadly.

Okay, that one Gallantmon totally had original Gallantmon’s voices but that’s a dub thing only and lasted only a few seconds.

This season our heroes have to save the world from the Evil Cherubimon. You know, the evil bunny that appeared in the movie with Willis on it? Granted that was a different Cherubimon, but that’s the form of our first bad guy.

The Setting

Frontier takes place in a Digital World much like the one in Adventure. It is wacky but not as merciless as the Tamer’s Digital World. There’s even a Primary Village!

However, Frontier also departs from the usual formula in quite a few ways. There are no Digimon partners for one. Instead, the kids use the Spirits of Legendary Digimon to turn literally transform (Henshin!) into Digimon.

Kind of like Bio-Merging but without the need for a partner.

I am not going to lie, I’m not a fan of that.

How It Manages


Decently enough.

Digimon Frontier has the strengths of most Digimon seasons. The characters all get a decent amount of development and we get some insight into their personalities. Perhaps not to the same extend as Tamers and some parts of the first season of Adventure but we get some nice character development all the same.

That said, it does have its flaws. For one the lack of partners takes something from the show. The human-digimon relationship was a really important thing in earlier seasons and it is sad to find that lacking.

Additionally, everyone but Takuya and Kouji becomes sort of irrelevant by the time the Royal Knighs Arc arrives. Takuya and Kouji are the only ones that can transform into strong enough Digimon to pose a threat to the bad guys but they do so by leaving the others without their Spirits, turning them into bystanders.

Don’t get me wrong, the Royal Knighs arc was a strong part of the show overall. It’s rather refreshing to see the heroes actually pushed back for a change. The heroes are outgunned and on the run. It’s a departure from the usual “Invincible Hero” trope and seeing it on a show aimed at kids makes it even more remarkable.

Sadly, there is still a fly on that soup, which is the other four kids turning into bystanders. If Frontier has one big weakness, this would be it. Not the lack of partners, because it could still manage to be a strong season even without them, but the diminished important of the other characters.

That said, even with its flaws, Frontier is a solid anime. If you like Digimon, it is worth a watch. 

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