Winter 2021 – First Impressions – Part 2


Just a few quick impressions of the shows I’ve seen so far… And I swear it’s completely happenstance that Part 2 is basically sequels…

It’s not many shows, but they’re all good, so hit the jump and let’s chat!

The Promised Neverland 2nd Season
Alt title: Yakusoku no Neverland 2nd Season

Nothing unexpected here. The last season ended with a scene break, and this season starts five minutes later. The kids, led by Emma and Ray are now trying to find their way in the forest…. And there’s a number of basic survival challenges. Food, water, giant monsters, and of course the hunters from the demon civilization out to recapture them. (Not kill them, they’re valuable merchandise after all.)

The only question I was left with is who, or what, is William Minerva? They played an awfully big role in the kid’s escape, and Emma seems to be depending on them…

But then, the end of the episode. And a Really Big Question…


I… can’t even. There’s too many possibilities and I refuse to speculate. Next week can’t come soon enough.

The Quintessential Quintuplets ∬
Go-Toubun no Hanayome ∬ Quintessential Quintuplets Season 2


If this episode was quintessentially anything, it was a quintessential setup episode… It gave the audience a reminder of What Has Gone Before, and spent an awful lot of time on what happened in Kyoto. Previously, I kinda felt the show was fingering Nico as the mysterious girl. Now, I’m not quite so sure.

From the previews, I was a bit concerned about the changes to the character designs… and while they still bother me a bit, by the end of the show I wasn’t really noticing.

Anyhow, Quints is back, still in it’s usual mode, and Best Girl Yotsuba didn’t get near enough screen time in this episode.

Cells at Work!!
Hataraku Saibou!!


Cells took the easy way out and lead with it’s trump card… Otherwise, the episode was pretty much what we’ve come to expect. Well, mostly. It really felt like they were padding to fill out the episode.

Cells at Work! Code Black
Hataraku Saibou BLACK

I am… not too sure what to feel about this episode. On one hand, it was a classic first episode. Introducing the main character, the scenario, and the bare minimum of plot/action.

But brother, was it dark. And there’s the problem. It didn’t (quite) go so far as actually being preachy, but it also couldn’t go five minutes without telling us what a grimdark hell world this body was. The show is hard enough to get used to (compared to it’s sibling) without narratively shooting itself in the foot. Of all the shows in this post, it’s really the only one I’m tentative about keeping.

Before I forget, one nice touch… The Showa era feel to the training video that Red Bood Cell AA-2153 watched.

Laid-Back Camp 2nd Season
Yuru Camp 2nd Season

“A perfect episode”

My wife

I don’t know that I’d go so far as that, but it was dammed good. Everything I expected, practically everything I wanted. I’d have loved if it had picked up after the end scene of the first season… But in this series, Nadeshiko hasn’t bought that lantern yet. (Makes sense as this episode takes place within a few days of the last episode of the first season.) So either that’s off in the future, or it’s going to be retconned away. Neither particularly bothers me.


The flashback to Rin’s first time camping was charming… (And brought back some painful but humorous-in-retrospect memories!) And I loved the heck out of the end. That was “just perfect”.

But something interesting that caught my eye. Rin’s upcoming camping trip. 144 kilometers (90 miles), an awfully long way on a scooter. And…

(Click to see full size and see my annotations.)


She’s only going to be a short distance away (20km, 13mi) from Nadeshiko’s hometown… (As shown in the promo art.) Interesting. Though it’s probably silly to try and predict plot points in this particular show.

=========

Anyhow, that catches up through Thursday (PST, GMT+8)… There’s a couple of shows yet to come on Friday/Saturday, so no spoilers!

Looking ahead, maybe one more First Impression post or maybe I pick up with week two next week. It’s going to be a bitch to figure when to post… What shows am I going to be way late to party on(or worse have the post overlap with the next episode)? Which shows to be shortchanged? Looking at my viewing schedule there’s no easy options. And that’s not even thinking about how I’m going to cover everything. Something is going to have to give.

So, your thoughts on these shows? I know at least a couple of them of hotly anticipated. Drop a comment and let’s chat!

6 thoughts on “Winter 2021 – First Impressions – Part 2”

  1. Quints was terrific, pretty much a spot-on adaptation of the source chapters. I like the new look too, it actually feels closer to the manga. If they stick to chronology then next week’s episode should be fabulous. I’m a little worried after seeing next week’s episode title that they’re going to skip a few chapters, but I’ll refrain from judgment until we see ep 2. Ep 1 though, loved it.

    “Nico as the mysterious girl.” Nah, Nico-nii definitely isn’t Futaro’s type. I think he’d either be a Rin or Pana fan, I’m guessing.

    Will come back to comment on Neverland and LBC later, haven’t got to those just yet. Definitely want to get those in before the NFL playoffs start tomorrow.

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    1. “Nico as the mysterious girl.” Nah, Nico-nii definitely isn’t Futaro’s type. I think he’d either be a Rin or Pana fan, I’m guessing.

      Rin? Pana?

      Anyhow, yeah, I should have expected that the mangaka wouldn’t have offered definitive clues so early on – and neither would the anime.

      Will come back to comment on Neverland and LBC later, haven’t got to those just yet.

      Looking forward to those!

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  2. Neverland opens with showing that demons aren’t all on one side (and I wouldn’t be surprised if Minerva was a demon, too). So far so set-up. It’s pretty much what I expected. Yeah, I, too, won’t speculate whether they’re with the kids or not, and why. As you say, too many possibilities.

    Same goes for Quintuplets. Fun re-introduction, good opener; nothing much to say.

    I really liked the Yurucamp opener. The return of pince-cone chan, etc. Liked the Rin-flashback. I wonder how she put up the tent in her home; she presumably didn’t pierce the floor?

    Cells at Work & CW Black… Well, I liked but didn’t love the first season, and the first episode of the second season didn’t do much for me; it felt more like a retread (if I’d been more fond of the first season I might have been more into it for nostalgia; but I don’t have any nostalgia for the show). It also felt a little phoned in. Meanwhile I liked Black better then expected, with the reaction of individual cells having a variety of different coping meachanisms and politeness levels. But I also have my reservations about some aspects, and I’m not really sure whether I ever wanted the darker version, though at the same time I feel it’s more interesting than a simple retread. So I’m in a weird spot about the franchise right now, where I can’t make any predictions whether I stick with any of the shows. Currently, the regular CaW is more likely to get shafted, but that can change when they go back to focussing purely on the biology without having to reacquaint you with the concept. I don’t know.

    Also, not going to say anything about content despite it not showing up on your schedule, but Spider has some terrible camera movements for the motionsickness prone. I want to watch the show, but if I do, I’ll probably be staring at the top or edge of the screen a lot, or even close my eyes. Seriously, that’s my biggest gripe with CGI; that it encourages funky camery movement that makes me queasy. (Happens for non-CGI increasingly frequently, too. Not a trend I like.)

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    1. I really liked the Yurucamp opener. The return of pince-cone chan, etc. Liked the Rin-flashback. I wonder how she put up the tent in her home; she presumably didn’t pierce the floor?

      That looks like one of the types of tent that doesn’t entirely rely on the surface beneath it to provide structure… So no need to pierce. (It’s very popular in the SCA because it’s easier to set up.) But usually, while they stand, they’re baggy and wobbly until they are staked. The anime seems to have missed that part, but it’s an absolutely minor detail that wouldn’t actually impact the scene, so no biggie.

      Neverland opens with showing that demons aren’t all on one side (and I wouldn’t be surprised if Minerva was a demon, too).

      Aren’t all on one side, or a well prepared trap? No way of telling at this point. (Agreed on Minerva.)

      Spider is definitely on my list! So I appreciate the discretion.

      Cells at Work & CW Black… After the premieres I’m very tempted to move both to my “potential discretionary drop” list. Shows that there’s nothing actually wrong with, but which are lower in priority and may be dropped (or at least dropped from commenting) to free up time. Time is a precious commodity this season.

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