If I were to describe this week in a single word, it would be bland. I think it’s just the very nature of life in this part of the world having to stay indoors most of the time because of the weather conditions. It’s not the oppressively hot conditions of Australia though. After the two weeks of trimming the waste from my winter watching schedule, I should have been able to have some proper enjoyment, right?
Currently Airing Top 5
This was an absolutely fantastically directed episode of Space Brothers. The drama on the moon picked up with Hibito now running on a reserve oxygen tank. In a sense knowing that he has little chance of surviving, he expends energy and precious oxygen trying to get his comrade Damien into a warmer place where he could be picked up by the rest of the Moon crew. The episode also did an excellent job in showing just how difficult the situation to rescue the two of them is. Conventionally, they would be expected to stay in the same place, because they wouldn’t have a need to move if they knew they’d be rescued. Hibito’s situation forced them to move, but the teams organizing the rescue wouldn’t know that. It may have been a good idea to set off the 2nd flare as Hibito ran some distance. I don’t know if this is the pinnacle of what this series can do, but damn I hope it lasts the rest of the way.
Maoyuu Maou Yuusha
The story this week revolved around potatoes and the state of the relationship between Demon King and Hero. They come across one of Hero’s former flames, Female Knight, who was worried about him. Demon King convinces Female Knight to spread her agricultural knowledge throughout the region by opening up convents. That activity doesn’t go unnoticed though as those in power who profit from war undoubtedly want to keep it that way. At the same time there are two separate issues that go unaddressed by the end. That is Demon King’s desire for physical intimacy with Hero, which is spurred on by Head Maid. At the same time, Hero wants to make sure that his former comrade, Female Mage, is safe. Demon King helps Hero by providing him with some armor and a list of contacts in the Demon world he can trust. I am definitely liking the job this series is doing with world constructing and with the characters as people even if the naming convention is rather silly.
Zetsuen no Tempest
Tempest returns to the story in full with Mahiro being talked into possibly killing Yoshino for manipulating Hakaze. Yoshino’s crime was simply making Hakaze fall in love with him for being the first reliable man in her life. At the same time, Hakaze and Yoshino search around Japan for the elusive mage of Exodus only to have him fall into their laps. Hanemura Megumu is that new character this week and he did come off as a bit of a loser character. He has the strange magical powers associated with Exodus, but he’s only using them to get his girlfriend back. That said, he doesn’t seem to be a terrible person which is a bit of a surprise and he got his powers one year earlier. Which was about the time Aika died. Hmmm.
I get the distinct feeling this could be one of those rare genre-defying series. At times it feels like a romantic comedy, but it’s not really one. There’s just too much human suffering to make the case for that. If anything, I would call this an exploration of the darkest parts of humanity. No one really comes out of this too well apart from Kotoura and Manabe. The childhood friend who was in love with Manabe is twisted and bitter. New friend Yuriko has a perverted edge, but she had to witness her mother hang herself after pressure from society eventually broke her. It still feels as though it has its heart in the right place even with all of the melodrama.
The Rest of the Week
Ore no Kanojo to Osananajimi ga Shuruba Sugiru
A rather strange episode this week as the focus is devoted almost entirely to Chiwa. At first it was a rather light-hearted episode as Chiwa and Eita were compelled into doing some delusional acting in front of the rest of their class. They were applauded for what they believed was a comedy sketch. However, it did do the job in making Chiwa popular enough to have her confession to another guy accepted. That is when the episode turned dark. Eiwa’s refusal to recognize Chiwa’s feelings for her hit a critical point on the day before her date. The argument led to a flashback where he vowed to heal her so she could do kendo again. She took it as something like a marriage proposal, he thought it was being nice to someone he took as his younger sister. Childhood friends almost never win in these shows.
This was easily the most entertaining episode since the first season of the show. I think it had a lot to do with this episode feeling like it came from that same season. There was a certain contrivance in trying to get as many characters into maid outfits as possible, even though they were all designed for grade schoolers. Also, they finally brought back the classic drama Sensei and Ninomiya-kun although I think I may have heard an actual line when that show was on during the episode. So hopefully this can be the start of a good run of form for this show. They may have to bring Hosaka back at some point though.
Yamakan’s latest comedy series didn’t drop off a cliff like many expected this week. There was a new character introduced in Ruki. I would say that the really funny character so far is Ross, the attendant who does more harm to Alba than anyone else. Healing other people and stabbing him with weapons he didn’t even prior to entering the cave. I’ll admit it wasn’t quite at the level of the first episode, but it got enough laughs from me.
The only thing that this episode had that was relevant to the plot was the breakdown in the relationship between the twin sisters. Otherwise, it was actually a really fun episode. Riki had to answer the question of who he liked before hedging and going with all of the Little Busters. Then, he ended up being kidnapped by the girls, being forced to cross-dress and playing games with them. On the plus side, it meant not getting caught by Kanata. On the down side, it meant that Riki would have those pictures distributed. I think Kanata is the next arc to be handled in the Jun Maeda Project. Then it will all get silly, even more than Psycho-Pass.
Kai spends his time unlocking the fifth Kimijima report while Frau has completely locked herself indoors following the release of the Gunvarrel episode. That report also hints at disaster, which indeed strikes as a solar flare hits the Kanto region and causes a robot rebellion in Tokyo. Frau’s twitter account is also hacked and places the blame on her for the incident. There was a great feeling of dread as soon as Doc started working on the monopole, and I think the episode did very well to continue that to the very end. I didn’t really have as much of a problem with the ending of the episode either. It truly felt like the real story began now.
Ishida to Asakura
The man loved by everyone, Asakura, who more than anything wants to be a teacher at a girls high school confirmed himself as a complete idiot. So stupid is he that he is in danger of having to stay back a year at school. This would ruin not only his own future, but the future everyone else imagines themselves spending with him. So he undergoes intensive studying training, only his mind continues to be only on breasts, so he does even worse. Maybe I was wrong after last week and this is a one joke series.
There’s just something about this show that I find compelling to watch, I just haven’t put my finger on it. The opening song is rubbish, and it’s pretty much a harem setup with out the implied feelings. Maybe the whole idea of a group of friends just doing stuff for fun is nostalgic in a way. I think that means I’m going to be finishing this series, even as the product placement reaches new levels.
Sakurasou no Pet na Kanojo
Sorata is pretty passive to begin with only taking out his frustrations on the girl who loves him most, and being completely ignorant of the other girl who loves him. Even worse is Jin, who has decided that he’s just unworthy as hell for the girl throwing herself all over him. Ryunnosuke may be the only male character with initiative in this show I’m afraid. As for the episode itself, it was one of those that brought the show back to where it was. Nanami was threatening to advance her relationship with Sorata, but no we are back to ambiguity. The whole school festival arc has been rendered irrelevant when it comes to that love triangle.
I find myself finding lots to say about this show every week and it is almost always negative. However, there was one scene which was the first real sign of positive light. The father-son conversation between Nobuchika and his estranged father was really good. Nobuchika’s disappointment in his father came as his father went from a detective to an Enforcer, which was due to becoming ever more jaded with the world. Nobuchika himself was also experiencing this for a good reason. That’s because the world construction in this series is absolutely broken. Rather than using Makishima to make a point about humanity, the series has decided to simply say their whole system is broken. Urobuchi basically gave away so many details into how this world was constructed that its terrible faults always come to mind first before even considering what happens in the story. That is the real failure here.
Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu: Finale
After 16 too many episodes made after a really good first season, this story comes to an absurd end. It’s really a complete troll ending as the potential NTR route never comes to fruition after the story becomes a battle anime in the end. To spare all of you the details, Yuuto and Haruka get married at the end. That’s literally the only reason to watch anything beyond the first season. You could go from the last episode of season 1 to the epilogue of this OVA and miss nothing. (57.2/100)
Unfortunately this isn’t a story about Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungen, rather it’s a story about human evolution as told through BL or something. These types of short series will never be known for narrative execution or proper character development, but Sex Pistols just eschewed that entirely for shock value.
Most of the story takes place between high school boys who struggle with their feelings of love for each other. Oh and they just happen to be descendents of animal spirits, but what does that really matter? The story generally progresses between flashbacks, heavily implied sex and scenes of characters imagining themselves underwater. That’s until all of the proper pairings are all set and then the thing takes a turn for the worse.
There’s just this strange moment in the 2nd episode where it starts to take the fanfiction classic mpreg trope seriously. That is to the point where they go ahead and explain that they use parasites to create wombs. That eventually leads to one of the characters having to sleep with another man because his family paid him off. That man, Joshua McBear, has a name all Americans should remember. It’s up there with Dan Eagleman in patriotism. (35/100)