Spring 2018 – Week 2

Well, here we are again – back for another season!  There’s a couple of premiers to cover, and it looks like I may be saying goodbye to a few in the next couple of weeks!

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Which shows make the grade and which might get the gong?  Hit the jump and find out!

The shows that I am watching are in bold, shows my wife and I are watching together are in bold italics.  Question marks denote shows not watched yet (during the premiere weeks), and strikethrough marks dropped shows.

Comic Girls Ep 2

The girls go to an art store, and hijinks and fun are to be had.  Then a fairly predictable first-day-at-a-new-school segment.  A fun show to be sure, there’s just not always going to be much to say about it.

Crossing Time Eps 1-2

The first ep, with a pair of girls at the crossing and the kohai confessing to her senpai on the sly…  was not bad at all.  The second ep, mostly concerning a little pervert dude lusting after a classmate, not good at all.

I guess in an anthology series you can’t win ’em all.

Cutie Honey Universe Ep 2

Mostly a long infodump…  Genet questions Honey about her past, thus allowing Honey to explain to us all the requisite backstory.  The fighting scenes were creative and dynamic and provided a much-needed break from the exposition.

Hinamatsuri Ep 2

I was much better prepared for Hinamatsuri‘s mix of seriousness and comedy this week, and as a result enjoyed the show much, much more.

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However, I have no freakin’ idea what’s going on or where the show is going.

Kakuriyo: Bed & Breakfast for Spirits / Kakuriyo no Yadomeshi Eps 2-3

Meh, I can’t say I’m at all fond of Kakuriyo.  The second ep was all talk, talk, talk…  And the third ep something of a pointless mess.  How did Grandpa Tsubaki go from a spendthrift libertine (ep 2) to someone the Young Master of the kimono house was afraid of his grand-daughter of marrying into the Tenjin-ya (ep 3)?  And then we’re suddenly back to all about food…  And piling on mysteries and a cliffhanger.

Unless some clarity emerges in ep 4, Kakuriyo may end up being dropped.

My Hero Academia 3 /  Boku no Hero Academia 3 Ep 2 (Ep 40)

I see two different sets of episode numbers for MHA, so I’ll be using both.  The first is the number of the ep within the current season, the second the number overall.

Just as with last season, we had a recap episode and then an introductory episode…  Most of this week was devoted to reacquainting us with Class A and their quirks.  Way too much time was spent on Mineta’s Quirk – Perversion.  If he gets no more screen time this season, I won’t be bothered in the least.

I was tempted to screenshot the bathing scene, but I’ll leave it at this:  MHA did you really have to go there?

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Yeah, we’ve seen all this before, but it was still cool to see Ochako and Tsuyu cooperate to take a monster down – without the help of the main guys.

We’re also introduced to Kouta – an orphaned child who doesn’t think much of heroes as a consequence of his parents, both heroes, being killed in action.  He can’t reconcile his personal feeling of abandonment with the public adulation his parent’s death receives.  I think this arc will be another “what does it mean to be a hero”.

My Sweet Tyrant Ep 2

The second ep was just as unlikeable and repetitive as the first.

Dropped.

3D Kanojo / Real Girl Eps 2-3

Frankly, Tsutsui is a bit of a jerk.  But to his credit he’s trying to work out his feelings.  I was kinda surprised at the way they turned things though…  In ep 2 he presented Ioroha with an otaku type figurine he made of her.  But in ep 3 he tried to work with what she liked and taught himself baking.  One the surface he’s afraid of being a normie, but without realizing it he’s starting to value that side.

For her part, despite her devotion to Tsutsui, Ioraha is something of a self-centered bitch…  But is much less self-aware about it.  To some extent she’s almost playing at being a girlfriend knowing that in a few months she’ll transfer away and it’ll be over.  I get the feeling that the rumors swirling about her at school are just the tip of the iceberg of a rocky past.  Though we don’t really see her POV, I think she’s been hurt in the past and is being hurt in the now.  Is that what lead her to offer herself sexually to prove herself to Tsutsui?

The most interesting thing about Kanojo, especially in Ep 3, is that just when you think it’s going to go all tropish – it becomes insightful and relatable.  Mark my words folks, Kanojo isn’t getting a lot of buzz, it should be.

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Rokuhoudou Yotsuiro Biyori Ep 1

A slow, slow ep dedicated mostly to setting up that characterization of all the staff at Rokuhoudou.  Loving the hell out of the aesthetic of the show, all done in muted colors and detailed animation.  The attention to detail in re-creating a Showa era teahouse was impressive.

Going forward, I’m hoping they concentrate more on the characters of the staff and the customer than on food porn.  Even though they introduced this week’s customer’s main dilemma a bit late for my taste, overall it was well done.  The food porn bits…  Not so well done.  I’d rate them as pedestrian at best.  We’ve all seen this too many time, and Yotsuiro brings nothing new or interesting to the table in that respect.

Note:  This is a Tuesday “us” show, and thus will likely regularly be a week behind because of my usual Tuesday evening social night.  Unlike Yorimoi I don’t see Yotsuiro as being “big” enough to stay current.

Sword Art Online Alternative: Gun Gale Online Ep 2

Another rocky week…  Last week was all action, this week was all exposition.  Way, way too much exposition and clunky explanations.

And who buys this “random character generator” crap?  We’ve seen Death Gun’s striking avatar.  We’ve seen our MC’s with avatars that just happen to resemble them IRL in both Alfheim Online and Gun Gale Online.

And the less said about the “boot camp” segment, the better.

Just for reference I looked up the SAO timeline.

  • January 20-22, 2025 – SAO:ALO Fairy Dance
  • May 16th/17th, 2025 – SAO survivors reunion, New Aincrad opens.
  • July, 2025 – SAO:Extra Edition
  • August, 2025 – Karen/LLENN starts playing GGO, First Bullet of Bullets
  • November, 2025 – LLENN becomes a PK, Death Gun murders XeXeeD (kicking off the events of SAO:GGO).
  • December, 2025 – LLENN meets Pitohui
  • Dec 14, 2025 – 3rd Bullet of Bullets (the main action of SAO:GGO)
  • Dec 28, 2025 – SAO:ALO Calibur.
  • Jan 27th, 2026 – Asuna duels Yuki, kicking off the events of the SAO:ALO Mother’s Rosario.
  • Feb 21st, 2026 – First Squad Jam, LLENN takes part.
  • March 29th, 2026 Konno Yuki passes away.
  • Apr 4th, 2026 – Second Squad Jam (the main event of SAOA:GGO so far), Konno Yuki’s funeral, end of SAO:ALO Mother’s Rosario.
  • April 24th, 2026 – Opening scenes of SAO:Ordinal Scale

(Source.)

Yeah, probably nobody but me cares, but I thought it would be interesting to put SAOA:GGO in perspective with the main series.  April 4th is kind of spooky, even though it shouldn’t be.

Tada-kun wa Koi wo Shinai / Tada Never Falls in Love Ep 2

Tada-kun started as an “us” show, but when we sat down to watch this weeks ep, my wife decided she wasn’t interested…  So now it’s a “me” show.

 

This week Theresa-hime starts at school (OK, she’s more than just a tourist), and decides to join a club to get the whole Japanese High School experience.  After a whirlwind tour she joins the Photography Club, just by chance the same club that Tada belongs to.  The balance of the ep was taken up by various Photo Club hijinks.

Yes, I’m going to refer to her as Theresa-hime from here on out.  They’ve done a darn poor job of hiding the fact that she’s anything but a normal high school girl.

I think Tada-kun will get a lot better once it gets all the introduction and setup out of the way.

Uma Musume: Pretty Derby Eps 3-4

I am just not feeling it here…  They keep setting up rivals/frenemies, only to forget them five minutes later.  The racing scenes aren’t very exciting.  And they’ve dragged out the “pervert Trainer-san” joke just one too many time.  They set up an interesting story, but haven’t done much with it.

Musume gets one, maybe two more eps.  I can’t take two cour of this.

Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku Ep 1

That was a heck of a nice setup…  It’s no MMO Junkie, but it’ll do.  I am not however sold on Hirotaka and Narumi dating.  It just seemed to happen out of nowhere.  I’d also like to see Narumi act a little more like the adult she’s supposed to be, rather than a leveled up high school girl.  If that’s supposed to be her charm, it’s lost on me.

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Nice characterization here…  She’s supposed to be a fujoshi, but she does know and appreciate anime outside her notional wheelhouse.

Still, it’s relatable enough that I’m curious to see where it goes next.

=========

Now that we have HiDive, we’re working through their exclusives from past seasons….  Earlier in the week, we finished the excellent Hakumei and Mikochi from last season.  Charming as hell, and loved it from beginning to end.  Next up is either is Mitsuboshi Colors (a potential “us” show), or Action Heroine Cheer Fruits (a “me” show).

I’m working on it ever as I type, but in a few minutes the Schedule page will be up-to-date with shows and tags.

So, what did you think of this week’s shows?  Drop a comment and let’s chat!

9 thoughts on “Spring 2018 – Week 2”

  1. Huh. I thought that SAO:A’s story might’ve happened sometime well before the main series but I guess they decided to completely shoot past GGO’s timeline. Neat.
    (& I guess any possibility of cameos are ruled out then, haha)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Opinions vary, but a lot of folks would regard a lack of cameos to be a feature rather than a bug. :)

      I don’t think we’ll see any of the main characters (and Sinon would be the only real possibility), but I wouldn’t be surprised to see some of the side characters.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’ll probably the case, yeah. But like Aldael, I’d really like to see them at least refer to some of the events of the main series.

        Connections between unrelated stories make fictional worlds feel a little more cohesive and that really does it for me as a fan of stuff like this. ^_^

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Comic Girls: I liked ep2 a little less than ep2. It’s fun but nothing special, and yeah, there’s not much to say.

    Crossing Time: Yup, fun first episode, annoying second episode. The good news is that bad episodes don’t last long, so it’s likely the good I’ll remember.

    Cutie Honey Universe: Not sure yet, whether I’m going to stick with it. I haven’t seen ep2, yet. It’s possible that this’ll be the first show I’ll watch irregularly: during the week on a slow day, rather than on the weekend when it airs. I find this season rather underwhelming on the whole, and I might something to padd out slow days. We’ll see.

    MHA: I’m getting fed up with this show, but at the same I’m feeling somewhat loath to drop it. It’s frustrating. I find Kouta annoying, because I read him as evidence that the show just doesn’t understand my viewpoint. If someone doesn’t like heroes, it’s either villains or people with a tragic backstory. I think the disconnect runs deep, and the Kouta story line will rub salt in the wounds. I really should drop this show; maybe I will.

    3D Kanojo: I’m not warming up on the boy, and I’m starting to sour on the girl. I generally agree with what you say here: it’s fairly well written, but it’s about people I don’t connect with. Luckily, I don’t actually outright hate anyone, and I’m curious enough to enjoy the show when it’s not busy annoying me. I’ll slip right into Wotakoi here, because this is the double team that tackless my aromantic sould:

    Wotakoi: It’s a pretty good show characterwise, and it has the potential of becoming a good romance, but I’ll have to get past the we’re-otaku-friends-oh-wait-let’s-date line. I’m so heartily tired of this. I feel that both 3D Kanojo and Wotakoi have their characters rush into a romance for no other reason than that people feel “incomplete” without romance in their lives. All the characters here don’t have any reason to date each other, other than not having to date anyone else if they do. Well, being an aromantic person I’m not exactly an expert, but that’s the impression I get.

    I think I’m getting along better with Tada-kun because it’s content with being fun fluff and not trying to be relatable. As for ep2, here, they’ve toned down the best-friend character and made him less annoying, so I’m hoping they do the same thing to club-captain. Tada-kun is nothing special, but it knows exactly what it is and sticks to its guns. It’s the one romance this season that – so far – hasn’t annoyed me.

    I’m fine with Kakuriyo, but the oni inn keeper character is incredibly dull (gee, I wonder who the mysterious food-sharing Ayakashi could be – do you think we will meet him?). It’s not a particularly great show, but I feel mostly comfortable with it. I see little potential for improvement, but also little danger for deterioration. I expect that what you see is what you get – and it’s a decent way to spend half and hour for me.

    Rokuhoudou Yotsuiro Biyori is one of my favourite shows this season. It looks absolutely gorgeous. I like all the characters well enough, even though none stand out. I feel they get bodylanguage absolutely write: the event-planner woman working at her laptop really did look like someone trying to concentrate in a place full of people. Also, I like the cat playing with the eyecatch. Extemely relaxing show; exactly what I want from it. Very happy with it.

    Umamusume is pretty much exactly what I expected. It’s one of my top shows this season, though that’s more due to the weakness of the season rather than to the strength of the show. It’s servicable fun, with good visual gags.

    Hinamatsuri remains a strong contender, with Anzu getting introduced terminator style (popping up naked in lightning and steeling biker clothes). The comedy beats are great, and Hitomi is the perfect straight man to the nuts show (god, that phone call from mum!). I don’t much like the funny faces they sometimes pull, but I love just about anything else. I don’t really know where they’re going either, but I don’t much care; I just go with the flow.

    It really, really is a pity that Hisone to Masotan is in Netflix detention. Show of the season, easily. Not going to talk about it much, but just make sure you don’t forget about it when it finally becomes available. Buy the disks if you have to. (Can you tell that I’m excited?)

    So far I’d say my top 5 looks like this:

    Hisone to Masotan > Hinamatsuri > Rokuhoudou Yatsuiro Biyori >>>>> Tada kun >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Uma Musume/Gegege no Kitaro/Wotakoi… (???)

    Not that strong a season.

    Both Mitsuboshi Colours and Action Heroine Cheerfruits are great. MC is more consistent, AHC is mostly worse than MC, but reaches higher heights. Overall, I like MC better.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. re:Hisotan If a show interests me, I don’t forget! :) The second thing I did after subscribing to HiDive was to go and put their past exclusives into my queue. (The first was to watch Cutie Honey.)

      re:Comic Girls I expect it will get a lot better in the next episode or two, as it gets all the setup out of the way and gets into the story. It’s not a bad show, it’s just not as good as it could be.

      re:Wotakoi, I thought I mentioned that, but it looks like I didn’t. I’m bothered by the “rush into romance” too, though for different reasons… To me it just doesn’t make any sense given the setup to be suddenly dating.

      Like

  3. It would be great if SAOA put some effort into connecting itself to SAO. Of course, the less Kirito, the better but I’d definitely appreciate a little nod like Llenn passing Sinon in an elevator or something. It’s great that SAOA tries to distinguish itself from SAO as much as possible but it would be weird if all this Death Gun stuff ends up never being mentioned. I can see Llenn not paying attention to it but Pito looks like a person who knows the tendencies of the community, and people getting killed should a big deal.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It will be interesting to see if the Death Gun incident gets mentioned… Everyone saw XeXeeD “disappear”, but did the connection ever make the news? Or was the IRL side just “another hikikomori found dead”? I don’t remember if they ever made that clear in the GGO arc.

      I don’t expect to see any main characters, but like I said to Carriage I wouldn’t be surprised to see side characters.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. There were many things left unclear in GGO. probably SAOA won’t try to rectify that though.
        Anyway, the show has more pressing problems like finding the plot. I hope it recognizes that.

        Liked by 1 person

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