REVIEW: ‘DOTA: Dragon’s Blood’ Has a Solid Story and A Strong Finish

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DOTA: Dragons Blood

DOTA: Dragon’s Blood is a Netflix Original fantasy adventure anime series. Davion is a Dragon Knight. He keeps the people of his world safe from the many kinds of dragons that threaten to overwhelm the people. But when he finds himself caught in the crossfire between an elder dragon and a mysterious demon his life takes a turn he never could’ve predicted. 

The newest video game adaptation from Netflix is a bit of a split experience. While never bad, the first six of the show’s eight episodes fall into a solid “good” category of fantasy adventure. It is in the show’s final two episodes that it manages to elevate itself into something special. 

As DOTA: Dragon’s Blood begins, we find the world in a relative state of peace. Except for the periodic monster attacks, there are no general dangers to the world’s many inhabitants. Unbeknownst to most, things are changing. When a desperate elf steals the sacred lotus blossoms from a goddess’s shrine a war soon threatens to engulf the land. And when a princess, exiled for her failure to protect these blossoms comes across our Dragon Knight Davion, the two are soon pulled along into a larger story, and greater peril, than either, would’ve expected. 

This setup delivers everything one would probably expect from it. The duo of Davion and princess Mirana combine to make a suitably enjoyable odd couple. They clash, poke, prod, and ultimately come to appreciate each other as they journey to save the world from war. Even as Davion hides a secret that is threatening to consume him.

As mentioned earlier, DOTA: Dragon’s Blood early tale sees Davion finding himself caught in a battle much larger than himself. As an ancient evil attempts to claim the soul of an elder dragon Davion, against his instincts, throws himself into the battle to defend his lifelong enemy. As the dust settles, the dragon gives Darion a cryptic apology about the suffering he will endure on the dragon’s behalf. The apology isn’t nearly enough for what is to come. 

With its early emphasis on dragon/human interaction, and Davion receiving a burden from one, I was initially concerned that this story was going to walk far too close a line to Netflix’s other video game adaptation Dragon’s Dogma. Happily, this turned out to not be the case. While the dragon aspect is important, it is far from the all-encompassing theme that it was in the other series. 

While the burden of Davion’s curse and he and Mirana’s quest to bring peace back to the land delivers enjoyable moments and competent examples of both story and character progression, it is the story’s finale that makes the show truly memorable. Just as you think you know where the story is going to land, DOTA: Dragon’s Blood spends its seventh episode on a tangent that left me confused as to why it had just bothered to show me what it did. This confusion though pays off hugely as the story builds on this unexpected detour in a way that takes the finale on a wild ride. I hope the show sees plenty of success, as I now need a season too so that I can find out where the story is going to go next. 

Just like the bulk of the series’ storytelling, the visual presentation in design, animation, and combat choreography is strong, if not stand out. Everything that the show puts in front of you never fails to be entering, but rarely elevates itself much beyond that.

So at the end of the day, DOTA: Dragon’s Blood delivers a solid story, that is vastly strengthened due to a strong finish. Given that it consists of eight 25ish minute episodes it is well worth the time investment to reach the best the show has to offer. 

DOTA: Dragon’s Blood is streaming now on Netflix.

DOTA: Dragon’s Blood
  • 8/10
    Rating - 8/10
8/10

TL;DR

So at the end of the day, DOTA: Dragon’s Blood delivers a solid story, that is vastly strengthened due to a strong finish. Given that it consists of eight 25ish minute episodes it is well worth the time investment to reach the best the show has to offer.