A new record! Fall 2021 – Weeks 3/4

Yuuki Yuuna - First Generation Heroes

Something of an unusual occurrence this season, and a second that almost happened…  Plus it’s week three, that infamous week, and time to take a look at which shows are keepers, which are losers, and which are on probation.

All that and more after the jump!

The shows that I’m 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.

Blue Period

Episodes 3-4

These two episodes form something of a pair…  Yaguchi has started at a prep school, and he’s gone from being something of a prodigy to being a little fish in a much bigger pond.  And that change has left him struggling.  He’s struggling at interpersonal relationships because now he’s encountering people much more driven, much more talented, and with much more experience.  And he’s really struggling as he learns just how little he knows about Capital A Art.

And having watched a friend go through much the same process (newbie through art school, they’re currently working on their Master’s) Blue Period has got it nailed.  Pay attention to what’s going on around Yaguchi because it’s very much reality.

And this is where the show is starting to leave me behind from an artistic point of view.  I’m a photographer, I find and capture art…  Whereas Yaguchi (and most other artists) create art from scratch.  Everyone is still ending up with art.  But they’re two very different mental processes.

Which is not to say the show isn’t compelling – it most certainly is!  Every episode ends with me sitting there a little open mouthed.

Status:  STRONG keeper.  Early front runner for AOTS.

Komi Can’t Communicate

Komi-san wa, Comyushou desu.
Episode 1

Was the source material a 4-koma?  Either way, this was way more frenetic than the material supported.  It almost hurt to watch because it would freeze-and-jump just as the action was settling in.  There was never any time to actually appreciate the situation.

Something of a shame too…  Before this (belated) premier – Fall 2021 was the first ever season w/0 any first episode drops.

Status: Dropped without a shred of regret.

(*)Let’s Make a Mug Too 2

Yakunara Mug Cup Mo: Niban Kama  (Let’s Make a Mug too: Second Kiln)
Episode 4

This week’s story was told from the POV of the clay.  Pretty funny actually.

Status: Keeper.

Lupin III: Part VI

Episode 3

That…  was aggressively OK at best.  I’m OK with the slapstick, that’s part of the show, right?  But the actual caper just wasn’t as good as it might have been.

Status: Keeper

My Senpai is Annoying

Senpai ga Uzai Kouhai no Hanashi
Episode 3

Bog standard two-steps-forward two-steps-back rom com stuff, only at Christmas time.  Honestly, I’m getting more invested in the quietly charming brewing relationship between Kazuma and Sakurai…  At least they’re more-or-less honest about it and making progress.

My Senpai is Annoying - Kazuma and Sakurai

Also, Sakurai is voiced by Saori Hayami who is more-or-less one of my favorite seiyu.

Episode 4

More of the same…  And we’ve all seen the one-gets-sick then-the-other routine a dozen times.  Sounds like I’m complaining, but it’s fine, this is not a high concept series.  Actually, I do have a complaint…  Can we retire the <censored> overdone trope of “guy who doesn’t have a smart phone”?  Its 2021, almost 2022 and that’s been done to death.

Status: Keeper, probably move to watched but not regularly commented.

SELECTION PROJECT

Episodes 4-5

Not much to say…  All the teams made it through the first round of Selection, which is pretty unsurprising.  Despite mentioning that it’s a Big Deal (first time ever and all that), they haven’t made much of it.  (Yet?)

Prediction:  They’ll all make it to the final and all be friends by then.  Somehow nobody will lose but even so MC-chan will win.

Status: Moderate keeper.  I’m not totally uninterested, it’s just not a show that ventures out of it’s lane.  About as a vanilla an idol anime as humanly possible.

Taisho Otome Fairy Tale

Taisho Otome Otogibanashi
Episode 3

Yuzuki charms Tamako (and solves her issues) with happiness, friendship, and food.  Not so different from her relationship with Tamahiko.  Is this the template for the rest of the series?  I wouldn’t be surprised if it is.

Episode 4

Fairly bog standard “manic pixie dream girl gets sick, morose male protagonist learns what a jerk he is”.  Not that anything will come of it, we’ve got 8 episodes to go yet and it’s an ongoing manga.  Not a lot of room for character growth.

Status:  Keeper.  Maybe move to watched but not commented?

The aquatope on white sand

Shiroi Suna no Aquatope
Episodes 16-17

These two episodes are all about Kukuru and just how hard she’s trying outside of work.  And especially in episode 16, about just how far she has to go as an adult in learning to empathize with others.

Aquatope on White Sand - Fuuka and Kukuru

And is it just me?  But there’s a lot we don’t know about Fuuka yet, and she’s never really had a focus episode that I can recall.  Despite featuring prominently in OP and plainly being intended to be a focus character…  she’s constantly played second fiddle.  And here in the 2nd cour, she’s just barely not a side character.

Overall, it’s not a bad series.  But I definitely feel that the second cour is definitely lesser.

Status:  Still a firm keeper.  Though it’s not as good as it could be, it’s still pretty damm good.

Yuki Yuna Is a Hero: Great Mankai Chapter

Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru: Dai Mankai no Shou

With episode 5 having aired, now I grasp what’s going on – they’re adapting the rest of the YuYuYu material.

Episode 4

Episode 4 brings us to the end of KuMeYu – the story of the Sentinels, hero candidates who failed to make the grade, but whom the Taisha exploited anyhow.  And sadly, it kind of ambles to the end without any sort of a climax, emotional or otherwise.  And that’s entirely the fault of the adaption for failing to make Mebuki more than a one-note one-dimensional character.

It sets up the action for the Hero Chapter but accomplishes little else.

Episode 5

From the mixed up timeline of the KuMeYu adaptation we jump – 300 years into the past.  To the coming of the Vertex (kinda handwaved in just a few scenes) and the birth of the Hero System (also kinda handwaved).

Yuuki Yuuna - First Generation Heroes

Three interesting parts though…  First, the Taisha are operating openly, while later they seem to be more of an Illuminati type organization governing from the shadows.  There has been a lot of inconsistency in the past in that respect.  In the Washio Sumi chapter they seemed to be open…  But just a couple of (in universe) years later in YuYuYu and the Hero Chapter they seem to be more shadowy.

One thing that hasn’t changed, is the Taisha are still exploiting young girls without being completely clear with all parties as to what is involved.  Two of these girls are dead by the end of the episode.

Second…  The First Generation heroes can all be more-or-less mapped onto the Sanshu Middle School Hero Club.  The appearances & personalities are mix-and-match, but they’re all there.  And there’s a very aggressive young Hero.  She wears Yuna’s face and bears Yuna’s name – but personality wise she’s Yuna mixed with Best Girl AKA Miyoshi Karin.  Please tell me they’re not gonna go the Fated Hero or Reborn Hero route.  That’s been done so many times before and rarely done well… And at this point I have little confidence in this adaptation.

Three…  The first generation seems to have access to a Mankai (Full Bloom) battle form _at will_.  Interesting.  Very Interesting.  And it sucks to be them, as using the Mankai form seems to result in significant physical injury.  From the very start, the Taisha are showing very little regard for the physical and emotional wellbeing of their charges.

Status:  Keeper.

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And having reached the end here…  Did you guess the new record?  For what I think is the first time ever no third episode drops!  Even if it’s not a record, it’s pretty darned unusual.  And no, though some shows are riding close to the edge, I didn’t fudge the numbers any.

=========

Seem to be only able to manage a post every two weeks…  so it goes.  As I’m trying to get restarted for really and truly, consistency is more important than quantity.  Neh?  But I do have some feature articles coming out, so there’s that too.  Please look forward to them!

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So, with Week Three now behind us, what are your thoughts?  What did you keep?  What did you drop?

Leave a comment and let’s chat about whatever is on your mind!

5 thoughts on “A new record! Fall 2021 – Weeks 3/4”

  1. I am really enjoying Blue Period but as it is on Netflix I’m not doing weekly coverage. I did a first impressions and now I’m just kind of watching episodes when I remember its on there and will review at the end of the season. Still, I really enjoyed episodes 3 and 4 and it really is one of the stronger anime this season.
    I’m also just having a lot of fun with a range of titles even the ones that aren’t so great. Tesla Note continues to surprise me by having a pretty decent plot despite the horrific visuals. Not sure I can recommend watching it when it looks like that but I’m not hating it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. @Blue Note: My main concern is can it keep it up? It keeps raising it’s own bar.

      @Tesla Note: Yeah, I’m seeing a lot of comparisons (of visuals) between Note and Ex-Arm. That’s not an honor to be sought after.

      Like

      1. Visually I agree that Tesla Note gets points for being one of the worst shows out there. Still I’m intrigued about whether the story will end up going somewhere decent so I’m persevering.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s a chaotic season for me. Mostly, because my watching schedule has always depended on my work schedule, and that’s been all out of whack for a while now. So now I’m watching episodes late and forget what I’m watching… It took your post for me to realise that I haven’t watched Selection project’s latest episode. Not sure what I’ll do: watch two eps next week, find time for it before then, drop? Who knows?

    I actually really, really liked Komi-san’s first episode. Later episodes dropped off a little for me, but I’m on board.

    Annoying sempai was one of the shows I was looking forward to, but I’m having trouble with it. See, I’m not fond of the I’m-not-a-child-she-said-childishly trope. And it’s too prominent. Kazuma/Sakurai is cute, though. Overall, I’m actually enjoying it, but the two main characters annoy me together (even thoug they’re fine characters individually), and just can’t see the romance (it feels forced).

    Other than that, I have little to say. Oh, I do really like Blue Period, but it’s not really anime of the season for me. That’d likely be Ranking of Kings. Excellent fairy tale vibes, but with stereotypical, “telling” character designs that get subverted by more nuanced characterisation. Great show.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ouch! I hope work settles down soon. Chaos & unpredictability are never fun.

      re: Annoying Senpai Agreed, the “mistaking her for a child” is getting kind of old. This week’s ep is Valentine’s Day, and there’s some nice Kazuma/Sakurai moments.

      re: Selection Project I suspect that if you drop it, you won’t be missing anything.

      Like

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