Now seven episodes in, RWBY is beginning to lose a bit of its allure. The harsh truth is, although the story and characters certainly have promise, the type of story they are telling simply requires more time than they are currently using. In the course of four episodes, the characters have been launched off a cliff, established their partners, and landed themselves in trouble with dark creatures. While this sounds intriguing, too much time is being spent on a single day. In other words, it does not feel as if there is any progress being made.
I will be the first to admit that I was not anticipating much from this series when it was first announced. Instead, I thought that it would be just one more way for Monty Oum to showcase his creative talent. While this has proven to be true, the series also brought with it some promising characters with quite a bit of potential. With entertaining dialogue and an intriguing (albeit derivative) premise, the series, for a number of episodes, exceeded my initial expectations. But these short episodes are depriving RWBY of the ability to develop at a proper pace. Instead, viewers are given fragments of a story, having to piece them together over time. To an extent, this can simply be attributed to the episodic nature of the show. That said, the weekly doses of entertainment feel more like pieces of an episode, providing near-unobservable progress during each chapter. In short, impatient viewers like myself may do better waiting for the season to end and binge-watching them back-to-back in order to see RWBY as a polished product.
Episode 7 had its own good and bad moments. In particular, the animosity between Weiss and Ruby is a point of concern relating to the previous criticism. The disagreement is beginning to grow stale, rehashing the same character dynamic over and over again. The catch22 of the situation is that this is a necessary component to the episode, as very little time has passed, and as such, little chance for change has even occurred. Also, the conversation itself was a bit too explicit for my tastes. It is rare for characters to so outwardly confront one another about their relationship or character flaws. The fact that this occurred with little to no build-up seems too convenient to be believable.
Conversely, the episode opened with an interesting conversation between Glynda and Professor Ozpin. More specifically, Glynda brought up a good question about one of the characters: How did Jaune get into the institute? At the moment, the character seems quite incompetent, even managing to annoy a large scorpion creature at the end of the last episode. This conversation suggests that there may be something special about Jaune yet, aside from his frequent role as the comedic relief. Furthermore, Ozpin’s reaction to Glyda’s comments suggests that he knows what this is, or at the very least, suspects it. Hopefully, this trait manifests soon, as even Jaune’s character, while certainly entertaining, is beginning to grow repetitive, as most comedic reliefs do.
Put simply, RWBY lacks the proper room to grow. If it continues to cram its large cast of characters and significant story arc into short, four-minute episodes, the series is going to begin losing the attention of its viewers. Although other Rooster Teeth productions can stand this loss, this is something that such a new series cannot afford to do. One can only hope that the action picks up soon enough and we will start to see some significant development in the characters.
Overall Episode Score: 6/10