Red Like Roses (RWBY Vol. 1 and 2)

RWBY, pronounced as “Ruby,” is an animated webseries developed by Rooster Teeth, the production company behind the Halo machinima Red vs. Blue and various other web shorts.

Often described as “an American-made anime,” the series takes place in a sci-fi/fantasy world with elements based on Grimm’s fairy tales, The Wizard of Oz, and various other legends & mythology.  RWBY is animated in a cel-shaded, 3D style that evokes video games like the Tales or Final Fantasy series, especially in the kinetic fight scenes that are the hallmark of RWBY creator Monty Oum.

Monty got started as a self-taught animator with fan mash-ups Haloid and Dead Fantasy, and worked on developing the combat system for the Afro Samurai video game.  He was later hired by Rooster Teeth in 2010 as an animator and fight choreographer for Red vs. Blue.  After the completion of RvB Season 10, Rooster Teeth gave Monty the go-ahead to create a wholly original series of his own.  Thus, RWBY was born.

The show follows four young girls as they train to be “huntresses,” warriors who will protect others from the evil creatures called “grimm.”  Before the release of RWBY Volume 1 back in 2013, Rooster Teeth released four trailers to introduce each of these characters:

Red

White

Black

Yellow

“RWBY” is an acronym not only for the color scheme of these four characters, but also their names.  Ruby Rose is our main protagonist and a young Sniper/Scythe-wielding prodigy, Weiss Schnee is the heiress to a wealthy business dynasty, Blake Belladonna is a quiet girl with a mysterious past, and Yang Xiao Long is Ruby’s lively older sister.

The first two seasons of the show are filled with great characters, interesting worldbuilding, and of course, several awesome fight scenes.  They can be seen in their original episodic form on the Rooster Teeth site or the RT Youtube Channel, as well as in a consolidated movie format for each season on Netflix.  Volume 3, which will conclude the first story arc set forth in the previous seasons, will be released this coming weekend on October 24th, and I am super excited!

RWBY has gained a rather large and loyal fanbase worldwide.  There is now an official Japanese dub through Warner Bros. Japan, a co-op video game called RWBY: Grimm Eclipse that was just greenlit on Steam after just two days (!!!), and an upcoming manga adaptation by Shirow Miwa.  Yang will also be appearing in this week’s ScrewAttack! Death Battle against Tifa Lockhart from Final Fantasy.  Aside from all of that, there are thousands of fan works, fan art, and cosplay based upon the world of RWBY.

All in all, it is clear that RWBY is a beloved series by many, myself included.  Sadly, the excitement for the show’s success and accomplishments is bittersweet.  In February of this year, creator Monty Oum passed away from an allergic reaction during a medical procedure.  He was 33 years old.  As Monty’s brainchild, RWBY is an excellent example of his talent, imagination, and hard work ethic.  I immediately fell in love with this show’s unique style, and am incredibly thankful that Monty was able to share it with us all.

The past few weeks have been a whirlwind of RWBY hype with the announcement of Yang on Death Battle, Grimm Eclipse on Steam Greenlight, and the release date, NYCC clip, and opening titles animation for Volume 3.  The weekend can’t come soon enough!  I am certainly looking forward to see what the good people at Rooster Teeth have in store for Ruby and her friends this season.  Until then, there’s the Death Battle on Wednesday, the Volume 3 opening titles to rewatch for the millionth time, and, of course, Jeff Williams’ awesome soundtrack to listen to on loop all week long.

With that in mind, I leave you with the Volume One opening titles featuring that season’s theme, “This Will Be the Day,” for today’s Musical Monday:

RWBY Volume 3. October 24th. It’s time to get hyped.


Disclaimer: All images and videos shown belong to Rooster Teeth, the use of which have not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. This blog post is for non-commercial criticism and comment purposes only. I believe that this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of the copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the U.S. Copyright Law.

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