Shin Weekly Round Up: March 2nd

Karura is actually away this weekend, but through the magic of timed posts, she is talking to you from across time and space!

Reviewed this week: Ano Natsu 8, Another 8, Aquarion 9, Black Rock Shooter 4, Last Exile 17, Persona 4 20, Mouretsu 8, Natsume Yuujinchou Shi 9, Nisemonogatari 8, Persona 4 20, Symphogear 8

Ano Natsu de Matteru 8

Things are reaching critical mass in the love chain that is Ano Natsu, and, ever one to fan the flames, Lemon decides to have a little fun by pairing everyone up for a test of courage at the summer festival. Whilst Mio seems ready to step forward with more confidence (if not necessarily with panties), Tanigawa may be forced to accept that there is only one girl in Kaito’s eyes – and it’s not her. With emotions running high and some splendid background music, this episode truly showcases what this series is capable of, and probably is the most enjoyable instalment in several weeks.

Another 8

Another week, another episode of Another. If that sentence seemed a little tiresome and repetitive, that’s only because it reflects the episode itself. Somehow, ignoring Misaki and Kouichi is now considered all in good fun, and so everyone heads off the beach for some R&R. As with several other episodes this series, nothing much happens until the end, when we get yet another amusingly gory death. I hope someone makes an edited version of this series that’s just all the over-the-top death scenes.

Aquarion EVOL 9

This week it’s Mix’s turn to step up to the plate and face her fears of Gattai, as the commander decides that her hole filling ability would be the perfect complement to Andy’s hole digging ability (isn’t it usually the other way around?). Naturally, this leads to cheesiness and hole puns aplenty, but it’s Aquarion, so it’s all in good fun.

Black Rock Shooter 4

Remember how, just a scant couple of episodes ago, Kagari was a complete basket case who was inexplicably left to her own devices by all responsible adults? Well, she’s all healthy and normal now, and attending school with our other protagonists. Only, the thing is, now that Kagari is being all chummy with Kuroi, Kotori is feeling left out – to the point of delusional paranoia. Naturally, the creepy school counsellor only fuels this by telling Kotori no one needs her anymore, which is why once again no adults seem to care when she has a mental breakdown and stops attending school. All this is reflected in the dream world as characters variously wander round, whilst we viewers can only be thankful that this journey is half over.

Last Exile 17

So apparently, all it took to end this long and bitter war was for the underage empress to just tell everyone she didn’t want them to fight anymore. Simple as that. Only it took Fam to pull it off, because for some reason, despite holding Sara’s opinion in such high regard, no one else thought to ask her for it up until now. Anyway, that leaves me wondering, what are the last four episodes going to be about? Will we have a Grand Race arc or something? Who cares, anyway? At least the end is in sight.

Mirai Nikki 20

Things move at breakneck pace in this episode, as Yukiteru and Yuno step back from the spotlight for a little while to let us see into the struggle between Ninth, Eighth and Eleventh. Ninth’s first task is to figure out what exactly Eleventh’s ability is, with a little help from Yuki’s friends and Deus himself. There are revelations aplenty here, and it’s easy to get left behind, but I’m eager to see how it all plays out in the end.

Mouretsu Pirates 8

I won’t be taken in by next episode previews anymore – I know that each episode of Mouretsu is probably going to be boring no matter what they say. This week, we find out that the stowaway aboard the Bentenmaru is actually a princess, and that for various political reasons (and a desire for screentime), she wants Marika’s help. Cue her being enrolled into Marika’s school and immediately becoming the centre of attention. Things do actually start to happen towards the end, but not at any kind of urgent pace.

Natsume Yuujinchou Shi 9

Another two part story begins in this episode, as Natsume ends up impersonating a sealed god in the hopes of saving a mountain from a decade of drought. As it happens, Natori has been tasked with releasing the sealed god, but can the duo pull everything together in time without falling foul of a hostile youkai? There’s a lot going on in this episode, but Natsume never fails to disappoint, and this week is no different. I’m eagerly looking forward to the conclusion of this storyline.

Nisemonogatari 8

I think it’s pretty well established that I’m completely corrupt, so much so that when people start complaining about the decline in morality that games like Atelier Rorona bring, I have to admit I hadn’t even noticed (Astrid is hot, dammit! She can perv over me any day). But even so, I can’t help but be disturbed by the levels of siscon this show is reaching. This week, Karen tries to get on Araragi’s good side so that he’ll introduce her to Suruga, which somehow ends up with him challenging her to endure him brushing her teeth for five minutes. Aside from the fact that this is far creepier than when he was wiping the sweat off her feverish body, I feel it must have inspired a whole new spectrum of fetishes.

 

Persona 4 the Animation 20

It’s time for a relaxing break from the story with a visit to the Amagi Inn for our heroes, complete with the usual bathing mix-ups. It’s entertaining stuff even if not a lot happens other than a condensed version of Yukiko’s Social Link progression – unfortunately without her Persona transforming into Amaterasu. Although I suppose there’s no point in the anime having everyone’s Personas level up.

 

Symphogear 8

Thank God for the power of kindness and friendship! Just as I feared that Miku would have to turn evil and become the first phase of the final boss, not only do the ties of friendship constrain her to want to reconcile with Hibiki, but she even rescues an injured Chris. Chris has started to use her Symphogear powers, although unfortunately given that the Noise are after her, even her powers may not be enough. Luckily, she is randomly rescued by Commander whatshisname, who seems so powerful that one wonders why he bothers to send schoolgirls out to fight. Of course, I jest, we have to send out teenaged girls because they’re better looking.