Sorry for being late and a bit rushed, but yesterday was not the best of days. (If you haven’t been following my twitter feed, we had a pet in surgery.) Still, I managed to cover most shows to some degree.
So let’s jump right in and talk about this week’s shows! Be sure and let me know what you think down in the comments!
Just as a reminder, shows that I am watching are in bold, shows my wife and I are watching together are in bold italics.
Ancient Magus Bride, Ep 3
This is what anime can do… Easily one of the best sequences/episodes I’ve ever seen.
Any other comment would be superfluous.
Anime Gataris, Ep 3
The club members raise their spirits by making a pilgrimage to Akihabara – and manage to save the club. Along the way, more hilarious meta-commentary on anime and otaku.
Blend-S, Ep 3
More character driven shenanigans… A funny show and worth watching, but hard to comment in any depth about.
Girls Last Tour, Ep 3
It was interesting to see that Chito and Yuuri aren’t the last survivors of whatever happened… But their reactions to meeting another person seemed oddly subdued somehow.
Idolmaster: SideM, Ep 3
This week was all about the upcoming debut for Dramatic Stars… Pretty much the standard fare for such an episode, only executed to IM@S’s usual high standards of characterizations and character interactions. We finally get Tsubasa’s backstory and why he became an idol… which mostly left me unclear between the connection between being a pilot and being an idol. But his earnestness and seriousness sold it anyhow. We still haven’t had Kaoru’s story yet, and I can’t even begin to imagine why somebody would leave off being a surgeon for being an idol.
Inuyashiki, Ep 2
That was… frankly, f*cking frightening. Like pretty much everyone else, I expected the kid to be a bad guy. What I didn’t expect was an absolute psychopath. (Or maybe sociopath, a little research on the two failed to make clear any useful differences.) They make it pretty plain this wasn’t a consequence of Shishigami’s death and rebirth – he’s been like that for a long time.
The ending fascinated me… First, in that Ichiro hasn’t yet really grasped what he is and what he can do. Unlike Shishigami’s enthusiastic adoption of his inhumanity, Ichiro seems to be grasping his innate humanity. (Which sells very effectively because of the setup in the first ep.) Secondly, because it’s an interesting creative decision to have an irresistible force meet an immovable object so early in the season. Of course, we have the third episode next – the traditional timing for the first big twist.
- E Minor at Moe Sucks posted an interesting take on why the episode was so chilling.
Just Because, Ep 3
Another slow burner… Where very little happens, but there’s a great deal going on. (It’s kinda hard to explain, isn’t it? Yes, yes, it is.)
I’ve got some reflections on Ena, but those are going into my next Photography in Anime post.
Kino’s Journey, Ep 3
Found out something I hadn’t known… the stories for this season were chosen by a fan poll. That doesn’t leave me with good thoughts for the rest of the season, as “fan favorites” aren’t always the best stories. This also limits the ability of the production staff to weave any kind of a coherent arc.
That being said, I definitely enjoyed this week’s ep… Travellers not only are changed by their travels, but change what they travel through. An interesting thought indeed.
Konohana Kitan, Ep 3
Frankly, I’m not sure what they’re going for here anymore. The last two eps have been a bit more serious than I’d expect for a purely CGDCT show, but they haven’t really been connected into any kind of coherent plot either. This week’s ep just reinforces the feeling I mentioned last week, like we’ve just skipped a bunch of setup episodes.
But it’s still cute.
Land of the Lustrous, Ep 3
Oh, man… was this ep good. Dia has been struggling to find her place because she hates being protected because of her fragility… And that leads her to empathizes with and seek to rescue/help Phos who is outcast because she so fragile and useless. She works so hard at this even as the rest of the gems are dismissive of the idea. There’s a bunch of *ssholes amongst the gems, but Dia at least has empathy for others. (Unlike Cinnabar, who is sunk so deep into her own well of self pity and self hate that she is blinded.)
And though there’s still some serious problems with CGI, the sequence of Dia running back to the temple(?) was simply awesome.
And of course the third ep twist… Phos has somehow been changed by her time as part of snail, now she understands the snail’s speech!
Love Live Sunshine, Ep 3
Is it just me, or did it feel like they stuffed two or three episodes worth of content in this episode? Looking back on the season so far, it almost looks like they’re rushing to leave room for something…
But kudos for this ep accomplishing something that mostly escaped them in the first series – both musical numbers felt like they took place in-world. Last season, almost all of them felt like music videos tacked onto the episode.
March Comes in like a Lion, Ep 2
No comment this week.
Recovery of an MMO Junkie, Ep 3
In the virtual world, our lovebirds grow closer… In the real world, they are still separate and agonizing about whether or not they even should grow closer.
Two Car, Ep 3
Yet another warm up race… Just how many do they need? And the camera spends very little time on the main pair, instead wandering over the other racers. In the course of the episode, we get Chiyuki and Misaki’s full backstory… and by the end of the ep, the standard falling out is resolved in a thoroughly standard way. Cue the ED and roll credits.
For a fairly predictable genre piece, Two Car stands out so far mostly for it’s clumsy execution.
A little bit of teasing fanservice setting up the standard summer staple?
No… It turns out that kneeler racers make “fireworks” by strapping bits of metal to the passenger’s body and dragging them along the road at speed. (And do these girls ever wear helmets?) I guess if you’re taking part in a sport with significant risk of death and injury, turning it up from 11 to 12 for a bit of fun doesn’t make that much difference. Plus, being teenages, they’re still at the “I’m immortal” phase of their lives.
And of course the whole sequence is accompanied by tons of yuri ship-teasing between the driver-passenger pairs. (“We’ll make beautiful sparks together” etc…)
Wake Up Girls: New Chapter, Ep 3
The Girls continue their efforts to increase their visibility by working as individuals and sub-units… Things don’t go well to start, but with their usual blend of creativity and ganbatte everything works out in the end. I particularly like Airi’s throwback to WUG’s early days on the “Animal Weather Report”. Noticeable by her absence in all this was Mayu… then, cliffhanger. Mayu has been chosen to appear in a drama, co starring opposite Shiho Iwasaki… The girl who replaced Mayu as I-1’s center. (And who herself has fallen from grace and been exiled to an I-1 subunit out in the sticks.)
So, it seems Mayu will get an episode dedicated just to her… Which I guess is par for the course, her struggles with her past and with the I-1 club are a key part of the narrative.
Shiho’s story is explained in the movies NAICT, which I really need to watch… I have copies, but the subs in the first movie are so awful I keep bouncing off of it.
Another thing in the episode is Tange-donno‘s mysterious connections… That’s a story I’d like to hear someday. How did someone as well connected (and seemingly well regarded) as her end up out in the boonies? Why does she dislike Tokyo?
Ayumi, Otome, and Atsugi’s conversation raised some questions though… They lamented that as latecomers to WUG fandom, they’ve never seen WUG live. If WUG is trying to raise visibility, and doing all this local work, why aren’t they doing local lives anymore? Odd.
Yuki Yuna is a Hero, Ep 3
I must admit to being thoroughly confused here… It’s not as if YuuYuuYuu didn’t have slice-of-life/downtime episodes, or that such things are unusual in magical girl series. It’s just that this one was so weird and contributed so little (nothing really) to character or plot development. An astonishing oversight considering that they must know how few episodes they have left in the Washio Sumi chapter.
(With this new format, full width for the writeups, I need to figure out something to signal the break between the last review and any chatty stuff after…)
Sorry, I tried to get as much of this done in advance as I could but it just didn’t work out. So some shows only got quick entries that deserved longer. Of course, some got quick entries because that’s all they deserved…
For those wondering, Miss Emma is recovering nicely… It’s still early (as I write this, not even 24 hours after she came home) but all the signs are positive.
Anyhow, how did your week in anime go? Drop me a line down in the comments!