Okay that was too much praise I guess I could be wrong as well but that first episode was really worthwhile(:
While everyone else is waiting for Shingeki no Kyojin and Suisei no Gargantia, I was eagerly waiting for Karneval. With those nice looking characters and wonderful set of voice actors, I decided to read the first couple of chapters of Karneval and it was quite interesting. Since manga and anime adaptation are sometimes conflicting, I decided not to go on reading the manga because it might spoil some things for me and lessen my enjoyment in watching this series.
To my expectations, Karneval certainly didn't let me down with its action pack first episode with the introduction of Nai (Shimono Hiro), Gareki (Kamiya Hiroshi), Tsukumo (Endou Aya) and Hirato (Ono Daisuke). I really like the opening scene of Nai and Karoku (Hoshi Souichirou). Their relationship will probably one of the key points in this series since Nai is in search for Karoku to begin with.
Aside from Hirato's mention of Circus being the National Defense Organization, no details has been mention yet. What's pretty clear in here has got to be that Circus is dealing with no ordinary criminals given their abilities. I'm hoping that we'll get a clear idea of Circus' business next episode (and I'm pretty excited to see Mamo-chan's character as well :3) as well as the deal with the guy hanging around with the old man. I have a pretty nice hunch that they will be the main antagonist of the series.
Shimono Hiro as Nai really works quite well. After hearing him play those I'm-always-getting-beat-up-or-teased type of role, he really fits Nai'sinnocent role nicely. Gareki, on the other hand, is a pretty interesting character just seeing how he decided to take in Nai. Of course he could be after Nai's Circus bracelet but I'm pretty sure that there will be some development soon. A plain thief with some pretty amazing escape moves like Gareki who's ready to take advantage and an innocent (probably) gullible young boy like Nai is a pretty interest pair. With Nai's interesting hearing ability (he should start playing Karuta. LOL. Chihayafuru reference here.), Hirato has taken an interest in him which will probably be the main reason of Nai and Gareki's involvement in Circus :3
Given it's title Karneval, I'm pretty sure that most viewers were looking forward to those fancy and flashy art but instead Karneval has delivered a shounen-like battlescenes and beautiful characters. For some reasons (probably it's the title) I kind of remembered Manglobe's previous series Deadman Wonderland and I'm really, really crossing my fingers that Karneval won't have the same adaptation failure. Aside from Karneval's beautiful characters, the battle/fight scenes are something to look at. Although they're not really HUNTER x HUNTER-like-exciting, their nice and quick moves are enough to make me stare at the screen and forget everything else around me.
All in all, Karneval has really proven itself (to me) worth watching. Being the series I looked forward to the most this season, I'm glad that Karneval didn't failed my expectations and brought a nicely paced opening episode with those fabulous looking characters in a shounen-like series. Now I really can't wait for the next episode. Yogi will be introduced :3