Fast and loud are Classroom For Heroes’ two main modes of operation, which they frequently combine. The show always tries to keep your interest, whether it’s through the introduction of new characters, making jokes at the audience, or simply switching between scenes. On the one hand, that’s frequently a plus because it allows the program to go between well-known character archetypes and fundamental plot themes rapidly enough that they never become belabored, making it a fairly simple sit. To the point where you’re pleading for an episode to take a chill pill and stop hurling jokes, fights, or anime girls’ nude bodies at the screen for, say, 10 seconds, on the other hand, that energy may very quickly become irritating in its own right. The controversial nature may make this a “love it or hate it” title in a show with more personality, but sadly, the program lacks the guts to pull it off. The difference, at most, is between a passable but temporary time-killer show and an irritating and pointless waste of your time.
Simply put, Classroom of Heroes lacks original ideas and is content to recycle as many character stereotypes and clichéd plot beats as is appropriate for a magic school production. Following the fiery redhead who becomes Blade’s tsundere admirer in the first episode, follows the stoic super-soldier female who, with the help of Blade’s companionship, learns to quit following instructions. The dragon, who can naturally transform into a little girl, declares herself to be Blade’s daughter after being vanquished by him. The next character is a half-demon girl with a dual personality who alternates between being shy and aggressive. Even the characters begin to admit that they are only repeating cliches to expand the roster by the time we get to the bizarre robot girl who learns what it means to be human due to Blade. Although each of these characters might seem harmless enough on its own, taken as a whole, they offer a picture of a program that is content to repeat clichés and gimmicks endlessly.
That’s a problem because the show’s central characters are responsible for everything. The majority of this series is made up of episodic antics designed to introduce new characters or give the existing ones something to do, though the season does end with a two-part storyline. If an episode isn’t about introducing a new girl for Blade to develop a crush on, it’s about the students working together to complete some arbitrary side objective, like defending a mystical egg or finding uncommon monsters to prepare a special birthday dish. In order to avoid detracting from the magical hilarity and fanservice that the series is mainly interested in, the few “serious” moments that do exist are brief and straightforward. If the jokes and personalities don’t resonate with you, this is meaningless.
That is only really complicated by the show’s self-aware humor. The show frequently strives for laughs by highlighting how ridiculous each character is, appearing to be conscious of the fact that it is basically a collection of clichés thrown into a bag and violently shook. Blade isn’t just your standard clueless male harem lead; he has no understanding of sex at all. Soon enough, the female ensemble is stripping and flashing for him to show his complete lack of emotion. Sophie is a blatant Rei Ayanami copy, and when the equally emotionless robot girl Iona shows up to obsess over Blade’s attention, Sophie becomes defensive of her status as the Stoic One. These jokes occasionally are funny enough to make you smile, but they also frequently give the impression that the show is trying to cover up its lack of personality. Winking at the camera is fine, but this is more akin to mugging desperately in front of the crowd.
The animation and direction are best characterized by that sentiment. While there are a few episodes that are below average, this season as a whole is incredibly well-produced. There are many entertaining effects and battle animations, which are frequently used for quick, unimportant moments rather than being solely reserved for climactic attacks or jokes. With the cheesecake-obsessed camera and the neatly rendered character designs, it sticks out among its Magic School counterparts in a positive way. Furthermore, the show’s nonstop race of punchlines and special attacks is fueled by a ton of inventiveness and vigor packed into scene transitions and one-off visual jokes. We occasionally change scenes randomly by having a chibi version of a character pound the screen with a mace. Sometimes the cast is depicted as pixel graphics running across the screen as a screen wipe. These transitions are inconsistent, and if you’re not prepared for them, they can occasionally be startling or perplexing. However, they are brief and swift enough to avoid becoming a stylistic non-sequitur as they would in other situations.
Unfortunately, if the characters and their antics don’t endear you to them, all that energy becomes an anchor around the show’s neck. This is roughly where Classroom For Heroes ends up: what starts out as a boisterous action-comedy may quickly turn into an annoying headache that constantly smirks at its dependence on stock cliches. Being quick and loud can grab your attention, but if what you’re yelling could be more intriguing, your audience will eventually just leave. Even while it’s not the most monotonous or bland Magic School anime you can discover, this program is only at most a C student.