Reviewed this week: Chi’s Sweet Home 29-32, Himitsu 4, Itazura na Kiss 8, Kaiba 5, Kurenai 8, Persona Trinity Soul 10, Real Drive 5, Shion no Ou 20, Toshokan Sensou 7
…and in manga: Minami-ke 23-8, Nodame Cantabile 114-9, Potemayo 1-8, Tennai 32-3, Tsubasa Chronicle 190
CURRENT SERIES RANKINGS
- Chi’s Sweet Home (1)- Chi scratches
- Kurenai (2) – 7-5-3
- Kaiba (3) – Patch and Quilt
- Nabari no Ou (4) – ninjas are cool again
- xxxHOLiC Kei (5) – Kohane-chan
- Wagaya no Oinari-sama (6) – fox trap
- Real Drive (7) – sunglasses
- Soul Eater (8) – Bones does shounen
- Persona Trinity Soul (9) – catch-up, start!
- Toshokan Sensou (11) – library wars
- Kyouran Kazoku Nikki (12) – disillusioned
- Himitsu (10) – you’ll get a room when grandpa dies
- Itazura na Kiss (13) – everything at or below this line is generic
- Amatsuki (14) – the new Shounen Onmyouji
- Allison and Lillia (15) – yawn
- Shion no Ou (1) – final match
- Tetsuko no Tabi (2)- is this ever going to be subbed?
- Love GetChu! (3)- light entertainment
- Himawari!! (4) – needs less plot
- Gunslinger Girl- Il teatrino (5)- licensed
- Shounen Onmyouji (6)- I’ll watch the last two episodes soon
Chi’s Sweet Home 29-32: When having to stay at home to watch Chi all the time becomes a little inconvenient, the Yamadas decide to try going out and leaving her to house-sit- albeit after a stressful few hours of running around trying to make sure the place is safe. Although I was a little surprised that Mother was okay with leaving Youhei at home on his own at one point, on the whole this was another entertaining slice of feline life, although I’m waiting for the black cat from the manga to make his appearance.
Himitsu 4: “Oh dear” is all I can say about this latest episode of Himitsu, as our heroes become even more bland and stupid than they were previously, just in time to solve a case about a man who gets rid of troublesome grandpas for families who don’t want them anymore. “Highlights” of the episode include Aoki’s father going into hospital “Hmm, my dad’s just collapsed, oh well, back to that report”, the main villain wearing a Robin Hood hat and singing “If you’re happy and you know it…[kill your grandpa]” and an exchange in which a mother tells her son he will get his own room when grandpa dies, so to pray for him to hurry up and pass on. In the meantime, the soundtrack has become particularly lazy, and indeed would sound more at home in a 16 bit game.
Itazura na Kiss 8: Kotoko and Irie’s university days have started, but in typical fashion Irie is being as much of a bastard as ever, brushing off Kotoko in favour of spending time with a ‘perfect’ witch queen from his own department. Much as I would like Kotoko to give up the fight to land this cold-hearted piece of human scum, she just won’t, leading to another episode of meaningless struggle for the heart of a man who quite frankly, just isn’t worth it.
Kaiba 5: There’s a quality of vivid nightmare in this instalment of Kaiba, in which our eponymous hero manages to lose the hippo body (I never liked that form anyway) and ends up meeting Patch, a mad inventor who designs new bodies. Patch’s mind is so crammed with memories that he just can’t form any new ones, causing him to get stuck in an endless cycle of creating useless bodies to mock the people who buy them to follow the latest fashion. There’s a lot of interesting stuff in this episode, including Patch’s dog, which he unwittingly made from the memories of the woman who loved him despite never being noticed. It’s disturbing and thought-provoking stuff at the same time.
Kurenai 8: The Kuhouins may have found out Murasaki’s location, but for now we still have time for some peaceful antics, as Shinkurou gets permission to take Murasaki to a minor shrine for her Shichi-Go-San (a celebration for children aged 3, 5 and 7). Whilst the bulk of the episode highlights how much I’ve come to like all the characters of the series, in the background giant wheels are beginning to turn, with Evil Young Man of the Kuhouin family deciding to take action and Ginko discovering that Murasaki isn’t even listed as a member of the Kuhouins. What does it all mean? How will it all turn out? Can Shinkurou really stand up to such a powerful adversary, even with Benika’s aid?
Persona Trinity Soul 10: I was slightly confused upon starting this episode to be greeted with a scene from the beginning of episode nine, but after a few indecisive minutes of not knowing what was going, I realised that this was meant to be what was happening to everything else whilst Shin was out for the day. Whilst Megumi tries to teach Takurou how to use his Persona, Yamazaki brings lunch over to the Kanzato house, only to end up staying to eat with them before taking in a movie. There’s a bit more to it than that, but the series is staying consistently average for now.
Real Drive 5: If last episode was all about orgasms, then this time around the focus switches to sunglasses, as Minamo tries to track down a rare brand known as Sous-Marin (or at least an equally rare and better quality knock-off), only to end up in the path of “Iron Schwartz” the combat android as he goes on a rampage. Aside from the inevitable pain of seeing two sets of sunglasses get ruined in the course of the episode, this is a reasonably good outing that entertains whilst adding nothing to the series- and I have to admit some of the background music and the fuss over glasses reminded me of Dennou Coil.
Shion no Ou 20: It’s time for the final match between the increasingly evil Hani Makoto and our heroine Shion, but even as everyone runs around behind the scenes trying to prove that the Meijin is the murderer, what will happen on the shogi board? I’m slightly amused as to how the Meijin is now being portrayed as a “gwakaka, I killed them for fun” villain, but of course I’m looking forward to Shion trouncing him in the game.
Toshokan Sensou 7: I found myself largely unable to pay attention to this episode of Toshokan Sensou, so uninspiring was it. Whilst Shibasaki discusses book-burning and a Library Committee cover up, Tezuka’s evil older brother decides to put some kind of villainous plan in motion, culminating in a cliff-hanger that sees Kasahara taken off for interrogation. Within the space of an episode, the library authorities have become some kind of faceless evil, but it all feels too extreme a shift for a series that had our heroine worrying about a visit from her parents just two episodes ago.
Minami-ke 23-8: It’s time to recall the simple fun of Minami-ke with this batch of chapters, which includes Christmas, New Year and Valentine’s Day, as seen in the first season of the anime. It’s always refreshing to have some Minami-ke to read, but it leaves me with the desire for more.
Nodame Cantabile 114-9: When Nodame needs to practise her Beethoven, Chiaki decides to focus on helping her- a major step forward in their relationship that even includes a kiss. Then it’s back to work for Chiaki when Nodame decides she must go the last stretch alone- but jealousy rears its ugly head when she realises that means he’ll be spending time with Rui. Everyone’s come so far since the beginning, but there’s still a lot of potential for the series to stretch ahead into the future.
*CATCH-UP* Potemayo 1-8: Since the Potemayo manga is practically identical to the anime, there isn’t much to say about these eight short chapters- the content is identical, but the 4Koma format and lack of colour and movement mean that for once I prefer the anime. Nonetheless, I need to get to the point where it picks up where the anime left off.
Tenshi Nanka Janai 32-3: It took a couple of weeks to psych myself up for it (I don’t know why, but I find early Yazawa a little headache inducing to read), but I’ve finally made it through two more chapters of Tennai, in which Akira discovers that Masashi is his half brother before finally returning home to Midori’s arms. It actually feels like the series could end here, but there’s more to come.
Tsubasa Chronicle 190: It’s time for a leisurely flashback in this episode, as we see how Syaoran Jr met Sakura-hime and realised that incest is okay if the girl is from another world. That’s all, really.