I think Spy x Family is going to end up my default header image this season… I just can’t resist. Just love the show to pieces! Hit the jump to read more, and what I think of the rest of the (in)famous Third Episodes!
The shows that I’m watching are in bold, shows my wife and I are watching together are in bold italics,
strikethrough marks dropped shows and (*) marks shows that are watched but not regularly reviewed.
(*) Aharen-san wa Hakarenai
Aharen-san Is Indecipherable – Episode 4
Deaimon: Recipe for Happiness
Seems that “show the characters growth through side characters” is going to be this series’ approach to things. That’s not a bad approach, and other than the overused “accidental encounter” it worked pretty well this episode. (Much better than the “hardworking misunderstood high schooler in Episode 2.)
That being said, aren’t the two main characters supposed to be growing together? In the “at the same time” sense, not in the “growing closer” sense – but I suppose “found family” is a kind of “growing closer”. They don’t actually interact all that much…
I guess they are growing closer but… Darnit, I just can’t put my finger on it.
Third episode thoughts: I’d like to see our two leads directly interacting more rather than through the intervention of secondary characters… But on the other hand, why mess with what works? I’m enjoying the show, and that’s what matters after all. Keeper, at least for the moment.
Heroines Run the Show: The Unpopular Girl and the Secret Task
Heroine Tarumono! Kiraware Heroine to Naisho no Oshigoto
In the end it’s didn’t take much for Aizo and Yujiro to start to have some sympathy for Hiyori… All they had to realize was how much alike the three of them are. All three are driven by their dreams – and putting their best effort into making them come true. I don’t think they accept her yet, but they’re starting to understand.
And Yujiro… when he takes his mask off, he’s one scary, angry dude. I don’t think it was an accident that our first meeting with him was when he was in trouble with the police.
Third episode thoughts: Though it’s a bit formulaic, and I don’t much like the boys, I’m enjoying the series. And arguably, not liking the boys is sort of the point – we’re seeing most of this world through Hiyori’s eyes. I’m liking this a lot more than I thought I would given my history with male idol shows. Keeper.
Love After World Domination
Koi wa Sekai Seifuku no Ato de
These two dorks… They can’t even figure out how to see each other outside of combat. It finally occurs to Fudo that they can actually call each other. (And meh, I dislike the “doesn’t know how to use smartphone trope”.)
Seeing the Reaper Princess at work was LOL. And we got a glimpse of the other Princesses… As the OP suggests, there is more to Gekko than Desumi and that dammed bear. (And “What is it with you and date locations!”, also LOL.)
And it appears Fudo may have been found out…. Could be interesting.
Third Episode Thoughts: I like it. It’s cute and entertaining, and it makes me laugh every episode. (In part because it’s so darned Over. The. Top.) Keeper.
SPY x FAMILY
What can I say about this episode… It was mainly a long, slowish, ridiculously well done introduction of Loid, Yor, and Anya to “family life”. Of course ridiculously well done is kind of Spy‘s default setting isn’t it? Less action oriented than previous episodes, but the character work carried it effortlessly.
That’s the real problem with reviewing this episode. There were just too many character bits to even begin to address! I’m not even going to try.
Also, who is the Shopkeeper that Yor got permission from? And why hide her brother’s picture from the audience?
Third episode thoughts: Ok, how is this even a question? AOTS candidate by a wide, wide margin. KEEPER.
The Executioner and Her Way of Life
Shokei Shoujo no Virgin Road
I’d have to say this was a mixed episode, some good, some not so much. That long flashback, filling in Menou’s background, was badly needed. Now it’s really clear just how broken she actually is… Is she really even human anymore?
I’m not sure we needed reminding how desperate Akari is for Menou’s company. Some of that is no doubt trying to cling to something familiar. But I also have this niggling feeling there’s something in her background we don’t know yet. In some ways, she seems desperately lonely.
And, with Momo setting off to investigate about the missing girls… That matter, the connection to the terrorists, the Princess, I’m not sure how they all connect to the main plot. (Which itself isn’t entirely clear.) But the writers are making darn sure we don’t forget about any of them.
Ya Boy Kongming!
Paripi Koumei – Episode 4
So, Kongming’s larger strategy is working out. Eiko has gotten the attention of a Big Wheel. An individual who truly can make or break her career with a single performance. But he’s also a bit of an ass, and attaches a huge string to the bargain.
And the result is Kongming headed off on some mysterious missions of his own. Missions with no clear connection to the goal of getting 10,000 likes. And I can’t blame Eiko for feeling left behind as he’s laser focused on whatever he’s actually doing.
But in the end, they make up – and Eiko reveals the true depths of her dreams. And boy, does she dream big… But I get it, go big or go home. Kongming, to his credit, simply accepts the mission.
In related news – it’s been announced that the original soundtrack will be released on Jun 29. I’ve been meaning to buy the TV sized (1:30 version) of the OP, but now I think I’ll hold off. <Crossing fingers> that it’s available in the US.
Didn’t think we’d get caught up after being busy all day Saturday, but we managed… Mostly because Sunday was a flop-on-the-couch-and-recuperate kind of day.
But dang did it feel good to get out and take part in a SCA event again and hang out with all my friends.
We still have the Couple of Cuckoos premiere to watch yet – so no spoilers please!
And that’s it for me this week. Drop a comment and let’s chat about this week’s episodes or whatever else you want to talk about.
3 thoughts on “Spring 2022 – Week 4”
@Deaimon: I feel they’re weaving a web rather than a string, though I’m saying that after the latest episode, rather than this one. I quite liked the episode. Also, Kanako might be favourite character yet, in the show. The “accidental encounter” didn’t bother me. It’s certainly a narrative contrivance, but it’s thematically set up well enough. For example, while Itsuka accidently gets far away, Kanako might deliberately choose an out-of-the-way place in order not to run into Nagomu. She has that caring side, so it’s also clear that she can’t pass up a girl who looks lost (and she’s miffed that Nagomu’s not quite as helpless as she’d need him to be to feel needed). Their interactions (Nagomu/Kanako) were really good; you see the closeness, but also the friction, without overplaying it. I liked this episode much better than episode 2. The show has this really casual way to make you understand how people feel in the moment (at least it’s like that for me – it’s all non-intrusive and intuitive).
@Spy X Family: Such a fun show. I’m really looking forward to the school interview. Yeah, they’re working towards a reveal for Yor’s brother (he’s likely in the “business” in some way).
@Heroines: Can’t say I like the boys much either, and, yeah, that’s sort of written into the story – my main problem is I find them dull. Our heroine here more than makes up for them, though (even if the voice acting can hit annoying notes at times). I’m having fun with the show.
@Executioner: Considering that first time we saw Akari was in the real world, and there was this person-shaped hole, I’m fairly sure we have a bond of fate of some form. I wouldn’t be surprised if Akari rewound time once before, so far that she ended up being unsummoned – if this ends up isekai-kei, it’s even possible that this is tied up with that one apocalyptic event. The show’s getting more interesting for me, but it’s not getting more… involving? I’m sort of intrigued, but that’s also nearly all. The story’s coming well together, though. Oddly enough, Menou’s backstory helped me contextualise Momo better; I sort of start to get her better, now that we know the general context. Even her context makes more sense. I predict it’s going to be a solid mid-tier show.
@Kongming: One of the problems I usually have with “dreaming big” is that “being heard by lots of people” doesn’t seem to have anything to do with music. I mean, do numbers really matter that much. I’ve never been able to understand the mindset of wanting to be star. My intuition is that it’d get in the way of production: more of everything – more expectations, more pressure, more commitments, more schedules, more exhaustion, more joblike, less inspiration, less fun… There must be a sweetspot between obscure and superstar, and shooting for the top always strikes me as losing sight of what matters. It’s a little more troubling in a show that explicitly highlights the management jobs. It feels like Kongming’s building her a golden cage, but I’m not sure the show sees it like that. More isn’t always better, and it isn’t automatically worse either – but music anime often are about numbers in one way or other, likes here, winning concours there… It can be grating (in shows like Your Lie in April it’s downright lethal for me), but here it it’s just a minor niggle. Still… it’s nice that they show her enthusiam for music, but there’s no sense of intricacies of writing music, or performance (stuff that makes shows like Nodame Cantabile or even White Album 2 pretty good). Surprisingly, Healer Girl is really good with music; they’ve taken the cliché line of “Music heals the soul,” and actually thought it through on both the musical and the medical side; it’s not particularly deep, but it’s good enough that it works for the show it wants to be. Don’t get me wrong, I like the Kongming show better – but when it comes to the music aspect of anime Healer Girl has it beat. I could never have guessed that after watching both episode ones.
No comment on Cuckoo’s then, except that I learned that the mangaka in question also wrote Yamada and the Seven Witches, which I enjoyed. I didn’t know that.
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Sure, but she traveled from Tokyo to an out-of-the-way place in Kyoto – the town where Nagomu lives… But after this weeks episode, that kinda feels like it was on purpose? That she feels like she has some unfinished business? (Makes note to self to remember that for next week’s post.)
Agreed WRT web vs. string though. There’s a lot going on here.
Oh yeah, they’ve been trolling us with hints about a fated pairing right from the start of the series. And the OP all but says it outright.
Overall, it’s been a mostly well done mix of backgrounding and story. I’m just ready for the real story to get rolling – we’re a 1/3 of the way through after all.
I understand your point… But I’d offer a counterpoint – it’s not about stardom, but about reaching as many people as possible. It’s easy to have a dream (reaching tons of people) without really considering the downsides (of being a star). And especially in this case, where Eiko is just a bit naive, that seems to fit.
I agree about being in the top seat through, it’s rough. I prefer to be “behind the throne” as it were.
@Kongming: It’s probably just that crowds scare me.
Also, Onipan seems to have appeared on HiDive, and the first three episodes were adorable. I wasn’t sure what to make of the oni-pantsu theme on the PV-sites, but it’s not fanservicy at all. They wear those tigre-stripe oniwear over their clothes for a magical girl transformation scene that leaves them without any extra powers… It’s cute.
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