Summer 2020 – Week 3 notes & comments

Oregairu - Yui

Halfway to the midpoint of the season, and most are hitting their stride!  Hit the jump, and run this week down.
The shows that I am watching are in bold, shows my wife and I are watching together are in bold italicsstrikethrough marks dropped shows and (*) marks shows that are watched but not regularly reviewed.

A Certain Scientific Railgun T Episode 16

Scientific Railgun T - OP 2
Railgun is back…  And a new arc/cour means a new OP.  The music is uninspired, but I loved the “reflected in building” effect.  Seriously, I didn’t think fripSide could make a dull Railgun song, but they certainly did so this time.

The live version has a lot more punch, why mix it down for the show itself?

Other than that, they’re still moving pieces into place.  Looks like it could be interesting – especially if Railgun and Shokuho stay paired up…

Deca-Dence Episode 3

Is this actually the third episode?  Because of the massive twist in the opener to the second, it kinda doesn’t feel like it.  Either way, more infodump and a training montage.

The big takeaway from this episode – Natsume may be Kaburagi’s ticket to blowing this world apart…  But he’s been indulging in minor acts of subversion and independence for a long time.   His decision to train her wasn’t quite as spur-of-the-moment as it looked.

Fruits Basket 2nd Season Episode 17

There’s going to be a lot of hearts broken before this series is over…  Both in the cast, and out here in the cheap seats.

Lapis Re:LiGHTs TV Episode 4

Once again meandering away from any plot progression…  Lapis now does what I’ve been afraid of from the very start… introducing more waifu bait characters and pulling the focus away from the lackluster core group.  It’s a “mixed media franchise”, and I think we’re seeing the as yet unannounced gatcha game.

Things aren’t looking good as we round the corner into the Mid Season Gut Check.

Didn’t mention it last week, but once again the idol performance was done in 3D.  This is a trend in idol anime, and frankly I don’t care for it.  The difference in styles is jarring and I have yet to see it done well.  Even the Love Live franchise, who presumably has the budget to do better, screwed it up in Sunshine.

My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU Climax Episode 3
(Yahari Ore no Seishun Love Come wa Machigatteiru. Kan)

Oregairu - Yui

Poor Yui…  No matter where she looks, it looks like her hopes are going to be dashed.  But I don’t think the Hatchiman x Yukino ship is sailing anytime soon either. Though both want something real, open…  That covers a wide range of relationships.  (Despite romantic being in the title.)

So far this season strongly reminds me of Haganai: I Don’t Have Many Friends.  The misfits spent so much time practicing being friends with each other (in preparation for the day when they found real friends) they practically missed that they’d discovered real friendship.  That’s an awful run-on sentence, but I’ll let it stand.

Rent-A-Girlfriend Episode 3 (ANN)
(Kanojo, Okarishimasu)

Though there’s occasional glimmers of hope for him…  Kazuya is a garbage human being.  Mami?  She’s fighting hard to take the title of “Worst Piece of Garbage” for her very own.

Sword Art Online: Alicization – War of Underworld: Part II Episode 3

Massive fun seeing the Gang kicking the tar out of the Bad Guys…  But then…  But then…  All the bad news.  All happening at once/in the same episode.  Good news is I don’t think they can amp the pressure up any further.  And that is a good thing, because it’s currently Very Bad.

Uzaki-chan Wants to Hang Out! Episode 3
(Uzaki-chan wa Asobitai!)

Uzaki-chan certainly surprised me this week!  It was (by the show’s standards) a fairly subdued episode with a minimum of yelling and didn’t rely (much) on boob jokes or set pieces.  I like the hints that Hana harbors deeper feelings for Shinichi and would love it if the series moves a little more in that direction.  If they dialed back the father-and-daughter Greek Chorus, I wouldn’t mind it one bit.

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That’s it for me – turning the mike over to you.  Drop a comment and let’s chat!

8 thoughts on “Summer 2020 – Week 3 notes & comments”

  1. @Deca-Dence: I’m still not sure what to think of it, and this was a fairly generic episode. I do like the casual way they hint that the absolute surveillence isn’t as absolute as the ones in charge may like, with Kaburagi asking operations guy to track Pipe being such a quick throwaway scene, for example. I’m not much of a story guy when watching anime, but this is one show where the writing definitely matters to me. And I’m getting mixed signals.

    @Lapis: Yeah, well, I’m getting exactly what I thought I would be getting. They’re actually progressing the plot, with driving our group more and more towards music, and so on. It’s not a great show, but it’s perfectly watchable for me.

    3-D Idol perfomances… I don’t think of it as a trend; it’s the default. And I don’t think it’s a budget issue either. Not sure when it started, but they already did it with AKB00048. Maybe there’s just something about the uniformity that algorhythms that the guys in charge like? Basically, everything about it that I dislike, is actually supposed to be the selling point? It’s also possible that there’s the game connection: maybe they want the performances to look sort of the same across media for synergy? A sort of conditioning of a core audience for predictable sales? Yeah, it’s definitely not for me.

    @Oregairu: My favourite episode so far, probably because I’m starting to get back into the groove rather than it actually being a better episode.

    @Rent-A-Girlfriend: I actually find Mami a fun character. I love her openly nasty looks, and Yuki Aoi’s in top form here. She’s scum, but then she’s supposed to be. I fear I’m supposed to sympathise with the main character, though, and I find him just pathetic and annoying.

    @Uzaki-chan: Oh, I adore the greek chorus, but I agree that less would be more here. I find the show fun, but have little to say about that beyond that.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. @Lapis It’s not that it’s not going where I expected… It’s not going where I hoped, especially with all the world building in the first ep.

      @Rent-A-Girlfriend It’s actually kind of refreshing that they’re not pulling any stops with Mami. And agreed on the MC… There’s really nobody to be sympathetic for. But I think laughing at them is kinda the point of this type of comedy.

      @Deca-Dence I get what you’re saying about the writing… They’re kinda telling two intertwining stories, and foundations for both are kinda shakey. There’s still a ton of potential though, they’re just not doing very good at distilling and presenting it.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi hi hi there!

    Well, this has been an interesting week. We’ve now had positive Covid tests among library staff at two other branches (not mine) since we reopened to the public a couple of weeks ago, staff are stressed and worried and morale is getting pretty shaky, but upper management won’t reconsider rolling back our reopening right now. They called a systemwide online meeting this morning that I didn’t bother with because it smelled like a waste of time, and sure enough I’m told it was basically 45 minutes of them defending our reopening process and trying to tell us what a great job we were doing. My branch colleagues today were as collectively angry afterward as I can ever remember seeing them. But enough about real world stresses, on to anime! Or anime-related stuff, since I didn’t actually watch any new anime this week.

    Updating my Aokana VN progress, I finished Asuka’s route and took a few days off afterward, because it was so good that I needed to give it a little space before jumping into the next one. If you ever get around to playing someday you’re gonna love it; your girl was more than done justice and her and Masaya make a ridiculously adorable couple. I’ve already gone back and re-read a couple of my favorite scenes from that route. Anyway, I briefly got back on it last night to see what the next route is. I’m just accepting them in the order the game offers them to me, so it looks like it’s Mashiro’s turn now. Probably jump into that tomorrow.

    I finally got around to reading the 7th Amagi Brilliant Park LN, and now I wish I’d gotten to it sooner because I enjoyed it more than books 5 and 6. Only one more volume to go, and I’ll be completely caught up with the series as it stands now. Which is kinda sad because Shoji Gatoh hasn’t written a new volume for it since 2016, and the story’s clearly nowhere near being over yet.

    Those two things and the ongoing FGO event ate up most of my free time this week. I borrowed Okko’s Inn from my library a few days ago, but I haven’t had time to watch it yet.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ick! Stay safe! I’ve already lost one long time net friend to COVID, and I have no desire to increase that number.

      Our local library has been running curbside pick up-drop off. A bit of a PITA because you have to set an appointment for pick up, but worth it. (Note to self: Drop off your returns soon.)

      How far does Best Girl’s route go? To her victory over Saki? Since I stayed far away from the noise and anger over the changes in the anime, I don’t actually know much of how the plot/ending was changed. Nice to hear you’re enjoying it, there’s always that chance when you pick up the source that you won’t.

      What been killing me this week is a friend got me back into Kerbal Space Program after a 2-3 year break… And it’s been eating up way more time than it should. As far as new anime goes, Lita basically goaded me into watching Eden of the East and after the first ep I think my wife and I are going to watch the whole shebang.

      In return, she’s supposed to check out Yuuki Yuuna… Speaking of which, last weeks ep (4) hurt, but not as bad as I feared… But there’s still 5, and the funeral scenes are a real kick in the feels.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. We’ve had curbside services in place since June. Ours aren’t appointment-based, you just show up during curbside hours and text in to the number that you’re ready for a pickup. It was working really well, too. I don’t know why they felt the need to push so hard for a fast reopening.

    Yes, the final match of the anime was adapted almost point-for-point from Asuka’s route. There’s an epilogue afterward, but for all intents and purposes that’s basically the climax and the ending. What’s funny, though, is that when I stopped to think about your question, I realized that even though the anime basically gave us Asuka’s ending (sans romance), it used almost none of the rest of her route! The only other major event they included from her route was Irina and Saki’s surprise visit to Kunahama, and even that incident has a slightly different context in the VN’s story (the match and result with Asuka getting clobbered were the same, but her VN self wasn’t so shell-shocked afterward, just frustrated).

    So I had some time yesterday and decided to finally start watching Flip Flappers, in part because of Xeno’s episode reviews. Got as far as episode 4, took a break for dinner, and then I see that article on ANN mentioning that Crunchyroll’s removing a ton of Sentai titles today, including that one. Wonderful timing, guys! But now that I’ve tried it out, I’ll probably just go ahead and buy it at some point. I enjoyed those early episodes, and I can tell there’s so much going on with it with the visuals and everything else that it’s a series I’d want to rewatch anyway, just because I already feel like I’m missing so much. And I definitely don’t want to rush through it just to beat a deadline.

    Like

    1. Adaptions always have to make compromises… Though I must say not having Asuka end up so much in the dumps would have been preferable. That particular mini-arc (and the flashbacks) were not the show’s finest hours.

      Damm, that sucks about Flip Flapper – that’s a dang good show. It’s also on VRV and HiDive if you have access to those. You can also rent it on Amazon Prime.

      Losing Shirobacko really irked me because I was pondering a rewatch, but it looks like it’s on HiDive as well… Now if only their UI/UX didn’t suck so badly.

      Like

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