REVIEW: ‘God of High School’ Episode 1 – “Set Up/Stand Up”

Reading Time: 3 minutes

One of the most exciting events in anime was the partnership announced by WEBTOONS and Crunchyroll last year. Opening up a whole host of series to adaptation has been phenomenal to see, and with Tower of God season one now finished, I was excited to jump into the next Crunchyroll Original title. Based on the comic series from Yongie Park published on WEBTOON of the same name has made its Crunchyroll debut. After showcasing the first five-minutes of God of High School Episode 1 during a live event, the anime had a lot of hype to live up to.

Produced by MAPPA, the fighting anime series is action-packed and follows follows high schooler, Jin Mori and his friends as they compete in an epic tournament: “God of High School.” Taking place in Korea, “God of High School” is an all-styles martial arts tournament for high schoolers from all over the country. With the promise of their heart’s deepest desires, participants enter the tournament looking for victory and recognition. .

Jin Mori, our protagonist, lives on his own after parting ways with his grandfather Taejin at a young age. In Episode 1 of the series, Jin is on his way to the preliminary for his region when he ends up chasing a purse snatcher. In the midst of his pursuit, he meets Han Daewi and Yoo Mira, two other high schoolers on their way to participate in the preliminary as well.

Running the traditional length of any anime episode, there was a lot to accomplish in this debut. Set up the characters, the premise, and leave audiences on enough of a cliffhanger to have them excitedly rushing back to their Crunchyroll apps the moment Episode 2 drops. And thankfully God of High School Episode 1 does this by effectively splitting the episode into two parts.

God of High School Episode 1

The episode uses the first half of its runtime to introduce us to our main trio for the series and give us a hint of their power and talents while the back half throws viewers into the tournament itself. This bifurcating of the episode helps to meet all the requirements that first episode has to hit to pull in audiences. God of High School Episode 1 is able to introduces the audience to its characters without longwinded backstories, using the ways they handle the purse snatch to highlight their personality traits in the first half.

In the second half, God of High School Episode 1 details the “God of High School” tournament without relying on excessive exposition. Instead, it uses the announcer as a plot device and throws the high schoolers into the fight and pushes the gas pedal on the action as far as it can go. By doing this, the stage is set for Episode 2 to come in with a bang next week, especially given MAPPA’s s-tier fight animation. The only fault I have s in the choice to redden every character’s nose, tops of ears, and some joints. It’s an odd choice, but it’s not enough to take you out of the episode.

Now, I can’t finish out an anime review without talking about the opening and ending songs for the series: “Contradiction (feat. Tyler Carter)” by KSUKE and “WIN” by CIX respectively. As an opening “Contradiction (feat. Tyler Carter)” is pulse pounding English song. Coupled with a neon opening of fight choreography, it’s enough to get anyone hyped and will be one to immediately add to your playlist when its available. In addition, “WIN” offers up a traditional K-pop style song that while more timid than the opener, brings the fire to your eardrums just as hard.

Overall, God of High School Episode 1 is a rocking debut episode that showcases exactly why Crunchyroll’s partnership with WEBTOONS was one of the best things to happen to anime.

New episodes of God of High School debut every Monday, exclusively on Crunchyroll.

God of High School, Episode 1
9.5/10

TL;DR

God of High School Episode 1 is a rocking debut episode that showcases exactly why Crunchyroll’s partnership with WEBTOONS was one of the best things to happen to anime.