“By the power of Grayskull…I have the power!”
I know I have no time and it’s a bad idea to add extra duties, but I must write about anime once again. Thus, until I die of overwork, I shall endeavour to put out a Weekly Round-Up as I once did, though not for manga at the moment as I have far too much of that to read.
Note: normally these will come out on a Friday and thus not be quite so out of date. This weekend, however, I was away doing real life things (it happens!).
Ano Natsu de Matteru 5
Although I feared that this week’s Ano Natsu might be a bit tedious, I have to admit that instead it was rather good. Art imitates life for the group when Lemon starts writing their screenplay – one in which Ichika just happens to be an alien who’s arrived on Earth and ended up living with Kaito. Meanwhile, feelings continue to bubble under the surface as the Tanigawa threatens to become the breaking point in the love chain, but should she silently pine for our hero or reveal her feelings? With some bold steps being taken in this episode, I have high hopes that it can put a worthy level of poignancy into the unrequited love aspect of the show rather than descending into conventional harem.
After the mess that was Blood-C, how was I ever fooled into thinking that this season we might get a good horror anime? This week, Another foregoes the gruesomely comical deaths for some lengthy exposition and ridiculous explanation. Despite his main character status, Kouichi finds himself getting the silent treatment from his classmates, and apparently it’s down to more than them just being a bunch of jerks. According to Misaki (who is similarly ignored and not actually dead, just a somewhat ‘unique’ person who lives in a doll shop), giving a classmate the cold shoulder is a defence against the fact that whenever the cursed class 3 (also known as class C in a ridiculous attempt to thwart the curse) has a mysterious extra student, one person dies per month. You can see why they’d do it, given that in one exceptionally long year 16 people died. And if mathematics isn’t the writers’ strong point, well neither is logic. Or writing.
Aquarion EVOL 6
Ah Aquarion, back in the day I loved you for your gorgeous aesthetics and utter cheesiness, and unlike certain other sequels *cough* Last Exile *cough*, you haven’t changed a bit. This week, we learn that Shrade’s piano playing is awful that it can cause listeners to kill each other to escape it (sort of), and that while the pure Pleasure of the Aquarion Gattai would likely kill him, he cannot bear to go on living in a world where he isn’t allowed a tasty threesome. Oh, and Kagura has an odour fetish.
Hunter X Hunter 18
The good thing about HxH is that you know what you’re getting, and you know it will be good. This week sees the conclusion of the Hunter Exam’s Fourth Phase, plus a little rest and respite before the Final Phase begins. Although I remember the broad brush strokes of the plot, there’s still enough that I’ve forgotten over the years to keep it interesting.
Last Exile 15
Last week’s episode was called ‘Bad Move’, and indeed it was a bad move to make a second season of Last Exile. Which, in fact, shouldn’t even be called Last Exile anymore, as there are multiple Exiles these days. I bring up these minutiae because although things happened in the episode, who really cares what they were? I know I certainly didn’t; in fact, the few times I was paying some modicum of attention, I just wished that the tactless loudmouth that is Fam would shut the hell up for once.
Mirai Nikki 17
Mirai Nikki is so crazy that it’s hard to judge; often it’s completely ridiculous and over the top, yet at times it manages to be brilliant as well. This week’s episode errs on the side of good, as we get a full Flashback Mode for Ai and Marco that turns them into quite sympathetic characters, before returning to the present day for a final showdown with them in their role as Seventh. As if Yukiteru didn’t have enough to deal with between yandere Yuno and his cowardly, self-serving father.
Mouretsu Pirates 5
After a good opening episode, Mouretsu Pirates has been dragging its heels ever since, and to be quite frank, this electronic warfare stuff isn’t doing much for me. I’m not saying it isn’t exciting when you’re at the heart of it, but watching girls punch away at touchscreens isn’t, I feel, the best use of my time. Fortunately, things pick up towards the end with some actual moving of spaceships and crazy stuff like that, plus a hint that maybe, just maybe, the plot might be finally going somewhere.
Nisemonogatari requires a significant commitment to reading vast amounts of text, but fortunately it makes up for that with its exceptional visual style, which for this episode seems to be orange against a monochrome background. I had to admit that this arc doesn’t rate as highly as any of the ones from Bakemonogatari, and Arararararagi wiping his sister down is a bit on the creepy side, but I’m happy to stick with this.
Persona 4 the Animation 16
Ah Persona, there are so many things I love about you. The sound of Teddie walking, the way the music gets stuck in my head for days on end, the happiness of seeing a Persona anime done well for once. Of course, it’s also hard to write about without accidentally dropping spoilers, but I’ll try my best. This week (which will be last week by the time I post this), it’s genius detective Naoto’s turn to get thrown into the TV, leading our heroes to realise that the case is far from over. I know by necessity it has to be this way, but compared to the time and effort one puts into a dungeon in a game, it does feel a bit brief and disconnected to see it in compressed form in the anime. Of course, no one wants to sit and watch an anime about dungeon crawling (unless that anime is .hack//SIGN) but still one is reminded that the original is usually the best.
I can’t help myself – I really like Symphogear. This is what Mai-Otome could have been if it had actually been any good- decent, solid fun with nice battle outfits to boot! Unfortunately, this episode is exposition heavy and thus weaker than its predecessors, but things pick up when Hibiki and resident pervert female scientist Ryoko are tasked with transporting a powerful relic.