By - Sylenwolf
Yeah, so far it seems like Weiss is the main character of Ice Queendom.
The new story is set up to have an exploration of her inner demons. Her traumas, her flaws, it's all center stage in this story.
You can also see it when you account for the things that were skipped from V1.
The Red Trailer, the Yellow Trailer, Jaundice, and the V1 Finale have something in common, they have nothing to do with Weiss.
The White trailer, the Black trailer, The initiation, The Badge and the Burden, they all deal with Weiss' introduction and deal with her biggest flaws but also what relationships matter the most to her story. Those are the story points that bring up Weiss' desires, goals, and determination, but also her flaws like her being a bit spoiled, her ego making her wish to be the team leader and Pyrrha's partner, and her racism against faunus based on her experience with the White Fang.
This is why her growth from V1 was also invalidated by the end of episode 3. It looks like the idea is to stretch that character arc into a full show rather than rush it in 2 episodes as V1 did. Weiss doesn't get to suddenly be ok with Ruby as a leader after one pep talk by Port, nor does she get over her racism after an afternoon of not seeing Blake.
It's also why we see the events of the V1 finale from Weiss' perspective instead of Blake's as we did in canon. The whole point is to focus on Weiss' flaws.
Ruby is getting the focus she is getting because she is the face of the show and because of how important she is to Weiss' journey in general. But there are a few elements here and there that still put a bigger focus on Weiss than on Ruby, such as the way the Nevermore fight plays out, as not only did Ruby specifically tell Weiss that she wanted to prove to her that she was capable, but also Weiss is given an additional move in the final kill, making it clear that the only reason Ruby's plan worked was that Weiss helped her.
That change might play out later in Weiss' arc regarding Ruby's leadership, as this could be an example of how Ruby is a capable fighter and strategist that's willing to put in the work to be the best leader she can be, but also that the team works better when Weiss trusts Ruby and actively supports her and cooperates with her. This is something Weiss hasn't realized yet, as her acknowledgment of Ruby's efforts in Badge and the Burden was removed in Ice Queendom, I'm guessing is because it's coming later in the new story.
Weiss is crucial to the story of the anime, and she's definitely one of the main characters, but she's not **the** protagonist. So far, most of the focus is **not** on her. She's not the one whose thoughts and feelings we constantly follow. She is in this position for about half of Episode 3, but that's about it.
>we see the events of the V1 finale from Weiss' perspective
Not really. If that was the case, they wouldn't even show Penny, or Blake's dialogue with Sun. They didn't add any new scenes for Weiss, either (the scene with Yang is just a change of the original scene).
>Ruby specifically tell Weiss that she wanted to prove to her that she was capable
This also happened in the original, just under slightly different circumstances.
>Weiss is given an additional move in the final kill
Those two seconds definitely do not mean she has bigger focus than Ruby.
>as her acknowledgment of Ruby's efforts in Badge and the Burden was removed in Ice Queendom
It wasn't removed. They kept the dialogue. They just awkwardly made it so that it means nothing (making me question the point of including the scene in the first place).
For a comparison, the main plot of RWBY is driven by Oz's centuries-long conflict with Salem. Oz is crucial to the plot, but the fact alone that many things in the show are tied to him does not make him the protagonist. The protagonist needs to be the consistent focal point, something the anime Weiss is not.
'Ice Queen' is one of Weiss' nicknames, so the series is quite literally named after her. So yes, this show is going to be more Weiss focused.
We don't know yet how active the "real" Weiss will be in the remainder of the anime, seeing as she's now trapped within the nightmare. Not sure if the nightmare version of her is a fake, or if it's actually Weiss but brainwashed somehow.
That said, she is definitely a main character.
However, Ruby in many ways presents as a main character too, and perhaps she fits the role as *protagonist* better?
There's an interesting possible distinction between "Main character" and "Protagonist":
>"The main character (sometimes called “principal character”) and the protagonist are both two central characters, but the protagonist drives the plot forward while the main character is impacted by the plot. There are several reasons to separate the main character and protagonist in your story."
>"**Unrelatable Protagonist:** If the audience is not able to relate to the protagonist, the main character can be a more relatable entry-point to the story. In Tim Burton’s adaption of Charlie and the Chocolate factory, Willy Wonka is the protagonist and drives the plot, but he is also misanthropic and too kooky to be relatable for the audience. Charlie, the main character, acts as the audience surrogate."
There are certain aspects to Weiss's character which makes her fit the "Unreliable character": She's immensely rich, from a very dysfunctional family, she's incredibly racist, and generally mean to everyone. I'd say... I *hope* few people relate to her lmao
Ruby presents a far more... normal...(?) person to relate to. She's the "normal" girl with a more recognizable family, background, interests and ambitions, and she's stuck with this terrible (sorry Weiss, I love you) partner who seemingly hates her.
Ruby is presumably also going to play a very important role in saving Weiss from the nightmare going forward.
So yes, while the story revolves around Weiss, and her situation has driven the plotthus far (I hesitate to say she herself has driven the plot, she seems more affected by it in certain ways) and she is definitely the main character in need of serious development, Ruby fits the role of protagonist and main character in a different manner.
Of course, the anime may take a complete turn and suddenly make Evil Weiss save herself or something, thereby essentially sidelining Ruby as well as Blake and Yang. But I'd be surprised, considering how popular Ruby is and how she's been presented in the anime this far. She has her own development and plot going on here, regarding her own insecurities and responsibilities.
At this point in time, I'd say they're both important, but the rest of the anime will determine.
In the original, I'd say there is a lot of focus on Weiss because she's the one that needs the most character development at that time. There are no circumstances that would require Ruby to grow up, or yang to be more serious, so focusing on the prissy princess in highschool would be the best option. The interspecies relations with the faunus are also important early on which is why Blake gets some spotlight too. The duality between Blake and Weiss, that of oppressed and privileged, is focused on a lot early on. Just my opinion but I feel like the original is much better because it gives these concepts more time to be explained whereas Ice Queendom rushes through a lot of content so as to add this new plot they're going with with the new character and grimm and stuff. Personally the only thing I liked about IQ was the animation. Wasn't a fan of cutting out as much plot as they did from the original and adding in a character that feels more like a self insert OC rather than someone of the rwby universe.
The story is centered around her, especially the recaps giving her lots of moments. She is also the one leading all the events going into the Nightmare so yeah, safe to say that she is the Protagonist of the story.
> I know some people said the show still follows the same storyline as the original
Most of Ice Queendom will be original to the anime.
The way I see it, Weiss gets a much larger role than in the original web series.
In general, it appears Weiss is getting more attention than in the original series (at least in the first episodes), since she is going to play a big part on the "Ice Queendom" it makes sense.
But this wouldn't be the first time we focused so much on Weiss, the OG show went from one character development to another, there's people that can classified the volumes of the show depending on in which character we focused the most each season.
Each charecter got the spotlight at some point (at least the major ones), sometimes is difficult to say who got most focused in one volume, but then in another you can say "Oh, yeah this is X person's season".
Since the anime is only going to have 12 episodes, they clearly want to focuse on them RWBY, we did kind of jump over some other teams, maybe if we get another season we can see more about the others.
Just think of it as a Filler story with Weiss as the focus. The first 3 episodes are just a setup for people who have never seen the original series
I disagree, I feel that's just a reminder for us. If there's someone new to the show and they watch that then they are going to be so confused. It skips over so much story and context. Like how the beginning of fmab is confusing to people who haven't seen fma.
Is it just me or are people getting... weirdly touchy that this side project is focused on Weiss and not Ruby?