If you want something akin to The Godfather meets anime, then 91 Days is going to be a show right up your alley. The atmosphere of the show really absorbs you into the world of the 1920’s where prohibition is in full swing! While the show does look very promising, did it impress? Let’s find out!
First Episode Impressions
The first episode of 91 Days does a great job with world and character building. The episode is focused on a man named Avilio and right off the bat we go into his backstory which showed the murder of his family when he was a child. His family was part of the mafia and The Don was murdered by someone who wanted change. Avilio’s mother, father and brother were all murdered in front of his eyes as he hid in the closet. He escaped the house and began to live with his best friend Colteo who now considers him a brother.
We skip seven years into the future and Avilio has returned to the town of Lawless where the murder took place. He is making bootleg booze during the prohibition era and his friend Colteo wants him to sell it. All Avilio wants to do is make money, go to college and live a normal life, but he’s talked into taking his booze down to an abandoned church which now serves as a speakeasy. Of course, things don’t go smoothly as Fango, a member of the Orco mafia family, shows up and claims that someone by the name of Nero has stolen booze that belongs to them.
Two other men are at the bar, but Avilio steps up and claims to be Nero. Avilio, Colteo and the two men escape from Fango and all drive off in a car where one of the men reveals themselves to be the real Nero that Fango was after and that is where the first episode comes to an end.
I have a feeling that 91 Days is going to be better dubbed than in its native language. When I think 1920’s mafia stuff, I really think of things like New York and Chicago and people talking in those kind of accents. Japanese accents just don’t mesh well with me in these kind of shows so it felt a bit off putting watching something like this in Japanese. I’ll have to wait and hear the English dub, if there will be one, to see how it compares.
The story itself is very interesting. I like shows and movies about the mafia and even though this was produced in Japan, they seem to have a good grasp on the way the American mafia families work and operate, even if some of the characters were blown a little out of proportion… like Fango, for instance. Fango didn’t come off as a mafia member, but more or less like a common Japanese street thug that you could find in almost any other anime with a character like that. I was expecting most of the characters to be a bit more dead serious, but even some of the characters, like Colteo, ended up being a little too “joyous” for my tastes.
The characters themselves are the main reason why I want to hear an English dub. I want to see how we spin these characters and their personalities versus how the Japanese envision them.
OP & ED Impressions
There was no opening theme for the first episode of 91 Days, but there was an ending theme with some of the most in-depth and meaningful lyrics I’ve ever heard. The lyrics spoke to me so much that I’ve memorized them for the purpose of this First Reaction.
“La lala… La lalalala… la… la lalaaaaa…. La lalalala..la…la la lalala…. La laaa.lalalaaa… la la la.. la la lala….”
Okay, I’m poking fun at it, but seriously, this song works. The slow melody, the piano and a girl just singing along fits the 1920s perfectly. Plus, they did the ending in the style of a silent movie where you have that decorated text box and it just looks and sounds so good. This theme is a great example of doing more with less and I may actually get the full version so I can sit in a plush chair in a den; sipping on brandy by the candlelight as I check the newspaper to see if my horse won. That’s the kind of atmosphere I get from this song and I love it.
YES – The first episode of 91 Days left a big enough impression on me to where I want to see more. I want to get absorbed into this world and get to know the inner workings of things. I love mafia dramas and this one, so far, is pretty well-done. We’ll have to see if the show can maintain this quality because if it can, this might just be one of the best animes this season will produce!