It’s this time of a week again. With this week 7, I decided to cut 2 shows as they didn’t win me over in their last episodes. Irozuku basically wasted its 20-minutes, whereas Zombieland Saga and Karakuri Circus further slip into mediocrity. On the other spectrum, Golden Kamuy continues to surprise and Bloom into You becomes a serious contender of the season. Ups and downs like a wave, this batch of Fall Season’s anime never fails to be intriguing. Also, thumbs up for Franz Ferdinand’s reference in Double Decker, which I think is extremely well done. The groupings this week, appropriately, will be around Franz Ferdinand’s songs as well. Enjoy the piece!
Akanesasu Shoujo (ep07)
Another mini-arc reaches its end, its issues are still relevant. It’s a shame that this arc in particular has many good potential to explore, but the show rushes it with its lackluster action sequences and clunky exposition. Characters are inconsistent and all over the place (one moment the side-girls are sleep-deprived and totally crazy about their phones, the next thing you know they’re in full-bar power like nothing ever happens) and I don’t think it’s only me who regards the action battles of Akanesasu uninspiring. With the episode, I’m happy to end the show here. It has some intriguing ideas behind visiting alternative worlds and meet up your doppelganger, but it only settles for the mildest aspect of it.
Release the Spyce (ep07)
Spyce, on the other spectrum, is a pretty show to look at. Well, the production doesn’t necessary knock your sock off, but at least it does the job. The issue with Spyce is that, it feels so empty from the inside. The cast embraces some familiar traits, but the main offender is how safe (and ultimately, unremarkable) the show plays with the characters’ chemistry. There’s a certain amount of building up, but it ticks all the tired tropes with its yuri undertones in which it tries to frame as a master – pupil relationship, it amounts to nothing. I don’t really feel anything about these characters, let alone their missions and all the events happen on-screen. As such, I see no reason for me to keep following it
You’re so Lucky, Lucky yeah so Lucky
Thunderbolt Fantasy 2 (ep07)
The Princess of Cruelty finally got chosen by the evil sword. Speaking of the female assassin, she’s vulnerable in every possible way. Beaten down by her enemy Shang Bu Huan, backstabbed and got sword-stolen from the corrupted cop, and now the monk mind-fucking her ego, she does what a loyal dog would do: bring the antique sword back to her Master. For a ruthless villain who only has a single mission of killing our hero, strangely I really feel for her struggles there. And that’s important that we feel sympathy for her because it justifies her action much later, which moves the plot in an interesting way: she’s drawing the Seven Blasphemous Deaths and ho boy, what a sword!! It enslaves the wielder and draws everyone’s desire once they look at it, and gain ultimate power with the blood it slays. While now, it proves to be the ultimate hazzard for our heroes, I still kind of feel bad for Scorpion girl. She won’t get out of this alive. On the other side of the battle, that cheeky Gui Niao has his next target, the glassed cop. Curiously enough, that Dirty Cop has gained some valuable information about the Enigmatic Gale, which honestly make this game way more interesting now that they are on the same level. My biggest pleasure is to see Gui Niao fishes the information out of Shang Bu Huan, and honestly seeing their vibrant chemistry as they bounce back and forth it brings a warm feeling to me (and that fishing scene is pretty awesome too). This mind game between two unpredictable figures could prove to be as interesting as the devil Sword. Also special shout out for weapons that not only can talk, they make much more sense than the human counterparts.
Karakuri Circus (ep06)
Another “duh” episode for me, as I believe when Karakuri Circus slows down it just loses its appeal quickly. We do learn more about his conditions, and the way kids suffer from it (why only kids by the way?) is heartbreaking to say the least. But then, we also have a powered up Narumi who is now indestructible, and forgettable and we have some clumsy exposition that they somehow makes it less interesting than it actually was. On other notes, we have a guy who helped him who is more likely to be Shirogane’s brother, which can be effective if they can build up probably.
Tsurune: Kazemai Koukou Kyuudoubu (ep05)
This week, Tsurune focuses on the ‘servants’ spending time together and growing more fond of each other. While the usual complaint can still be applied (the whole story is predictable), it works by the sheer chemistry of its male cast. Minato and Kaito, in particular, push aside their differences and become much closer to each other. The production remains solid as well, and with all the preparation done next week, with the first tournament will proved to be interesting to see how these boys bounce off each other.
Seishun Buta Yarou Wa Bunny Girl-Senpai No Yume Wo Minai (ep07)
We are in the beginning of the new arc and to my surprise, this arc focuses on Futaba the lab girl instead of his first crush, which works out fine for me. Granted, I’m never really sold on its physics explanation, and I have a feeling the show focuses a tad bit too much on her bouncing boobs and Sakuta’s harem; but the phenomenal this week is pretty solid. My guess right now for her spilt is that she is torn between actively asks Sakuta’s friend out and keeps all the feeling for herself. So far, it has been a bumpy but interesting ride and I can say that I’m growing fonds with all the girls, provided they don’t amp up on the incest trope.
Mascara Bleeds the Blackened Tear
Irozuku Sekai No Ashita Kara (ep07)
And with this episode, my patience for Irozuku has started to run dry. It’s that, I learn very little about about them this week. The plot is on the standstill and it’s a whiplash that the cliffhanger for last week, namely Hitomi can see in colors, reverses back to the status quo. Which begs me a question on why they did that (gave her a brief moment of colorful sight) in the first place. Since the episode where Kohaku comes back home, all they have been doing are club activities that add next to nothing to the plot, in fact it feels as if our cast is in search for a plot. This week, Irozuku focuses on a side character, Kurumi and her little growing-up crisis. There’s some neat material here and there, as I can relate to her feeling inferior towards her older sister, and her issues of not having anything she could give her all to. But all this doesn’t necessary work out well in the end, given how little we know about her sister, or even herself, for that matter. Irozuku also develops the chemistry between her and Chigusa, her underclassman who is obviously has a thing for her, but the way Irozuku shows it leave a lot to be desired.
Yagate Kimi Ni Naru (ep07)
Yagate triumps again by exploring its side cast, this time from Sayaka’s point of view. What makes her feeling so relevant is that it ties up well with the overall theme of Yagate, about coming to term with their own feeling. Points for her that think and behave like a proper confused teenager, and extra points for portraying a positive queer couple that is open and proud of their relationship. While I feel her asking the question to the cafe owner a bit… nosy, the way the woman handles it and the way Sayaka opens up her true feeling are pretty intimate. If the show goes with this direction for the rest of its run, I can see it making it into my favorite anime of the season.
Zombieland Saga (ep07)
Well, that rock concert comes to an end and sadly I feel indifferent to the whole thing. Ai-chan and the manager have a heart-to-heart conversation of what it means to be an idol and I’m not sold on it at all. In addition, sadly the cast has become so plain that they don’t stand out from each other, especially Sakura. The actual performance has the same CG issues, and it feels lackluster in general. The only bit that works for me is the gag of Ai getting hit by a truck that triggers Sakura’s memory, but other than that I don’t have much to say about this show.
I’m Your Villain
Double Decker! Doug And Kirill (ep07)
Double Decker goes with the main plot this week, with Doug getting his hand over his death partner case. Overall, it’s serviceable enough. The case has some twists and turns but when you look back there isn’t a lot under the surface, which I admit the same can be said for most of Double Decker’s cases. We see how Doug’s sense of following the rules comes from and we see our titular characters come to a new understanding. Still, they aren’t particularly deep enough or the case is particularly exciting enough to leave a lasting impact.
The last two episodes GRIDMAN has cleared up many things and handily suggests the road it will ultimately take for its last half. First, it’s the reveal that the world our characters live in is belong to Akane’s, as she can destroys, and rebuilds again as she likes. Second, it’s a strong hint that she might not be the last boss of this war, that she’s being manipulated by Alexis, the alien. Like I has discussed over the past few weeks, I reckon the main emotional conflict is going to be between Akane and Rikka. While their past is still a mystery (which now I’m leaning to the theory that they used to get along but fallen out as they grow up), the two things (more appropriately, two people) that tie them together are Yuuta and Anti. We know for a fact that Rikka and Yuuta had a history before he got amnesia (that ball game rally – in fact, this week in audio drama we learn that it has something to do with a headband). This week, we’re leaning to the other side here with Yuuta and Akane. Take it as pure fanservice or not, the sequence where Akane doing in Yuuta’s bedroom is full of sexual tension. It’s Anti who goes through a lot of action this week. He comes to school and confronts Yuuta before stealing all the breads. Soon he’s inspired to create a kaiju to kill Gridman, and failed. I can’t help but feel sorry for him the awful way Akane treats him, which plays as a huge contrast to how Rikka treats him in previous episode. The parallels are there: Akane consistently gets close to Yuuta, but he’s more attracted to Rikka. Akane treats Anti like pure dirt, while Rikka respects him a whole lot.
Golden Kamuy (ep18)
My gosh, Golden Kamuy steps up its ladder in this second cour. We all know Golden Kamuy can be ruthless at times, we already knew it’s quite good at pooling pitch black humor from its crazy cast, last week we learned how it never forgets the central intimate chemistry between Asirpa and Sugimoto, but this episode is the first time Golden Kamuy goes for melodic approach and handily succeeds on that. On a narrative level, it’s just another flashback to flesh out Taginaki character, but it does ao with thematic relevance and emotional depth that makes this episode a rewarding experience. You just have to watch it to see for yourself, though. It’s the kind of backstory that comes very neatly in the end, while at the same times inform you about his position in the current timeline.
Banana Fish (ep19)
Well, Ash breaks down pretty badly this week, at the same time Eiji stands up for the first time and Blanca somehow becomes a bodyguard of Yut Lung. It’s another case where Banana Fish just burns through so many materials that the pacing is all over the place. Not only none of these events have a proper chance to sink in, the overall tone is off. There are some convenient “coincidences”, most notably regarding Sing and Blanca’s encounter that connect the several plot threads poorly and many characters suddenly gain knowledge (like Yut Lung and Sing over Shorter’s death) that normally would take several episodes to acquire. Thus, my two main issues with the show so far remain 1) the short run-time the show has so it has to omit many materials and 2) its larger than life Hollywood-style tendency.
The Dark of the Matinée
Goblin Slayer (ep07)
Golblin Slayer goes all out, action-wise. It’s one of the their lowest point yet where the team almost dies in a mission. It makes for some gripping moments for sure but ultimately there isn’t much going on beyond that. There’s one thing though, there’s someone behind the curtain pulling these goblins (and from the way it was hidden from the kingdom they might as well be someone from the Royal. The animation is alright, I’m not too impressed over the 180• switch or any action sequences. It’s still pretty good on showing our characters, especially our Priestess, on their breaking point though.
Kaze Ga Tsuyoku Fuiteiru (ep07)
It’s a reality check for all the track team member, now that they make their first official track meet. Interestingly, it’s not the amateur cast members but Kakeru who learned the lesson the big way. Hugely disappointed that he couldn’t finish first, he then is reminded on how selfish he is. Well, running is supposed to be an individual sport, but Fuiteiru makes darn strong case that supporting your teammates is another method of running as well. I also enjoy the animation this week. Having to animate 20 plus individuals at the start of running is no small feat, but they did that with grace. Only Kakeru and Haiji made it this time, predictably, so there’a still a lot of works for the rest of the team to catch up on.
RErideD: Tokigoe No Derrida (ep07)
RErideD is a big mess. This episode does so little to advance the plot except for the bit that Yuri was the cause of Mage’s disappearance, with frankly we could see it miles away. Derrida remains an annoying character to follow, but then again the rest of cast isn’t that good either. This week plays like a Hollywood spy/detective story and somehow it manages to be boring and inconsistent all over the board. Next week, with the appearance of Mage I hope the show finds its own footing. For now though, even its intriguing world is lost under meandering plot and uninteresting characters.