Outerhaven Anime – First Reaction: Tower of God

A while ago I stumbled upon a manga (or technically a manhwa) from SIU called Tower of God. I read some of the chapters and found it to be pretty interesting! I got hooked and then the manga disappeared from the internet because it got licensed. Time passed and I had completely forgotten about this series until it was announced that it was getting an anime adaptation. Suddenly, memories came flooding back of the chapters I had read and I was elated and overjoyed that I could pick this series up once again! How well did it hold up versus what I had remembered?

Let’s Go!

First Episode Synopsis

Here, we are introduced to our main character Bam who was discovered by a girl named Rachel after Bam was trapped inside of, what appeared to be, a collapsed hole. This, of course, was in a flashback but it is important to know because Bam thinks the world of Rachel and has ever since that day. When Rachel tells Bam that she is going to climb The Tower, he doesn’t want her to go. He vows to follow her no matter what and does just that.

The Tower is comprised of challengers called Regulars. The overall goal is straight-forward: Climb the tower and everything you could ever want awaits you at the top. However, the path to get to the top isn’t so straight-forward. Regulars must pass tests in order to be considered truly worthy. Bam enters the tower on his own and is considered a Non-Regular and must pass a test in order to see if he can even enter the floors and climb the tower. This test is about breaking a ball being guarded by a White Steel Eel.

Bam is about to plunge head-first into danger when our supporting characters intervene. They are Yuri, Princess of Jahad and Evan. Yuri is kind of a major tsundere towards Bam… at least at first but then, she quickly starts to show concern for Bam as he enters the test. She even goes as far as to lend Bam her sword who seems to be able to control it without any issues which shocks both Yuri and Evan. Bam ends up passing the test as a result and gets transported to the first floor. Since Yuri and Evan are going to give chase to get the sword back, I’m sure this is not the last we are going to see of these two.

Finally, the next test awaits Bam which is a large open outdoor area where 400 Regulars are scattered throughout. If you’ve seen or at least heard of Battle Royale, you know what’s about to happen here… except you only need to deplete that number down to 200 in order to advance. Our first episode ends with Bam getting surrounded.

Worth Watching?

YES – Not only did I enjoy reading the manga back when I did but this adaptation reminded me just how good it actually was. The concept for the show isn’t anything really new and fresh but it doesn’t have to be. Climbing a tower to earn something has been done many times before but the journey to the end goal is what usually makes a show like this interesting.

Of course, Bam is a Non-Regular so his reasons for climbing the tower differ from everyone else’s. He’s there to reunite with Rachel again and doesn’t care about the prize. Having his own motivation is usually the mark of a main character so it fits Bam just fine. The only issue I have with Bam is he’s just like the plethora of main characters in shows like this… he’s determined and has his mindset on a specific goal but he’s really meek and timid. He’s brave enough to do anything but once he gets himself into a situation, he has no clue what he’s doing whatsoever. He’s simply being fueled by hopes and dreams without any skills to make them a reality.

Typically, characters like this evolve over time and “grow a backbone” so we will have to see if that’s the case with Bam here. I’m sure Yuri and Evan are going to rejoin him at some point and assist him through the tower… that’s pretty much an inevitability. Just when that happens, though, we won’t know. Bam is in a bit of a spot right now and as he is currently, I don’t see him getting out of it without any help from some sort of intervention.

Still, Bam’s adoration of Rachel is really cute but I truly wonder if Rachel feels the same way? What is her reason for wanting to climb the tower? One other tidbit I caught was that it appears time passes differently inside of the tower. It was noted that Rachel may have already moved on which makes you wonder just how time works there.

Lastly, that opening theme song! We have a banger alert here as I actually rewound and listened to it over and over again! Then, I heard the ending and thought it was equally as amazing! ID INVADED has some competition as I already have that opening and ended on my “…of the year” candidate list. Plus, the opening is in both Japanese and Korean so you can enjoy it two different ways! No matter which way you listen, it’s still an amazing song!

In short, watch Tower of God. Despite some of my minor qualms, this is shaping up to be a tremendous series and, if adapted correctly, could be an Anime of the Year candidate (just basing it off of my knowledge of the source material).