Musings and Reflections – Winter 2017 Week 3

     Well, I’m certainly not early this time, but I guess better late than never, as the saying goes.

ACCA: 13-ku Kansatsu-ka (Ep. 2) 

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     Things are getting more complicated ergo more interesting. Nino being a spy wasn’t expected. Yet, he still seems friendly with Jean and I doubt that Nino has spied on him during all the time of their friendship. Then either there was a specific event (which is interesting) that lead Nino to betray Jean, or Nino is playing double (which is more interesting) and that I find to be more likely. Just because Jean doesn’t look like such an oblivious guy as Nino tells the superiors. Actually, it’d be rather fun if Jean is actually planning a coup d’état. The incident with the lighter I find weird – how Nino (for I guess it was him) knew who grabbed it and where exactly that person was? I don’t remember the rookie policemen showing the lighter to everyone he met. The rookie might not be a bad person, just a pretty dumb one, and it’s possible that he’ll eventually team up with Jean. Well, probably more with Jean’s sister, but anyway. Mauve is also a player that isn’t transparent at all but somehow I’d rather see her in a positive light. And I’d definitely rather see her (and others as well) being a bit more detailed and on model more than just in close ups. That’s some quite unexpected quality hiccups from Madhouse. Showing a school trip when children get some history lessons is not the worst way to do exposition. Certainly not as bad as it was last time, but still, it feels not that organically embedded into the story.

Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Shukufuku wo! 2 (Ep. 2)

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     AAAAAAAAAHMegumin? Was pretty good. Some other early jokes about the toads as well, but especially the bath scene, prologue to it and all the implications later on were more of a miss for me. I just don’t find that stuff particularly funny. Didn’t find in the 1st season either. Nothing unexpected about that. The absence of Darkness was felt more than I would’ve imagined but as I never liked her M tendencies much (per se as well as because for the most part that was the only defining factor of her character) and Megumin’s efforts were enough to keep everything going on. The show proved that Darkness still isn’t a character without whose appearance KonoSuba would break. As for all the Yunyun stuff, it was breaking (of sorts) the continuity. Well, technically it’s ok that we now see Yunyun as for the first time and such introduction is all she needs, but she was already introduced in the OVA. Yes, there it was said that everyone has met her before, so the OVA still fits in the timeline, but it’s weird that part of the story was told in advance without reason at all (except all the OVA-ish material. You know what I’m talking about) and now Yunyun gets a second introduction. Probably the best part was the ED. Felt like it was mimicking the success of the first one, but by itself it was one of more memorable this season.

Kuzu no Honkai (Ep. 2)

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     I guess I’m at that stage of liking an anime that it can do almost anything and I’ll still be head over heels for it. I’m not even sure what exactly makes Kuzu no Honai to me as exciting as Rakugo, and at certain times even more. Everything just clicks and I hardly can think of anything that I’m not happy about it. Finally seeing Ecchan animated was big joy since she’s my favorite character, probably for being the most relatable (not that I share her sexual preferences towards the same sex) and having the least characteristics of scum from the whole cast. Haruka Tomatsu sounds just as I imagined Ecchan would, so that’s another big plus. Moka also made an appearance and, as in the manga, while her pure side is still overshadowed by her possessiveness of Mugi and kina tsundere-ish character, Hanabi being able to show who’s the boss felt very satisfying. Well, in general I’m not very into loli characters, especially as annoying as Moka was in the beginning. Thinking about the structure, I guess it worked better in manga when a character had his/hers POV chapter. Now it’s still good, but cramming multiple different POV segments together isn’t as smooth. Also, the scene that ended the episode might not have been the best one to do so. In the very manga it was a bit confusing when everything that we saw happened and only then all the stuff leading to it was explained. Well, it’s not bad, but I doubt it was best way to leave everything at such a cliffhanger.  By the way, Ecchan’s cat sounds hilariously annoyed for some reason.

Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu: Sukeroku Futatabi-hen (Ep. 3) 

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   Yotaro achieved something big this time. The fact that he actually went into prison for something he hadn’t done slightly undermined his turning from a (sort of a) gangster to a harmless rakugoka. But that doesn’t really matter since he was able to project his grudge for the imprisonment in a way that let him to ride the same wave and talk as bravely as he could about Konatsu to the Mr. Yakuza. He probably knows better than anyone what a wrong step and anger of a real gangster could do to him. As he said himself, to Yotaro this moment could prove to be crucial in finding his own way, understanding why he wants to do rakugo. It looks like at the moment he really likes what he’s doing – earnestly practicing, appreciating Yakumo’s skill, sheltering Konatsu from any connection with not the best public, learning to find wisdom and courage in rakugo itself. Konatsu saying to her kid that Yotaro is the dad was very beautiful – she finally looks to be appreciating Yotaro’s effort. The writer guy I still don’t completely trust. Sure, so far he’s been only helpful but digging into the past that may probably be left alone might not be the best idea. By the way, someone on reddit found out that Yakumo’s performance was made to emulate Sukeroku’s not just by it’s spirit.

3-gatsu no Lion (Ep. 14) 

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     Now I partially understand how Rei feels since I completely misjudged the show myself. And that’s really for the best. As dumb comedy which I still can’t stand remains pretty sparse, this season so far looks a bit better than the first one. Sure, Rei overreacts, but what can you expect from such a damaged human being? He’ll probably eventually decide to join the workshop and learn from this mistake, but the realization of the mistake itself was portrayed very well. I guess I’m happy after all that the show decided not to pursue the shounen-esque “revenge on Gotou” path, but on the other hand this all Gotou stuff remains unresolved. The guy probably got a good laugh out of Rei’s misery but some conflict in the future is still bound to happen, and the situation working as a build up to it might not be as convenient as this time. So yeah, that was quite an episode. But I still can’t believe how Rei managed to misjudge such a good player. He even was higher ranked than Rei, so do they give ranks for nothing? Yes, Rei was all emotional, but still.

Tales of Zestiria the X (2017) (Ep. 3) 

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     Is it me, or the backgrounds this time were particularly vibrant and well-made? Overall the show remains a harmless mix of many things. A fight that was quite beautiful, but without much emotional stakes? Check. Overstepping any possible conflict between Sorey and Shirayuki, even though the ending of the last time was quite handy for a clash between them? Check. Reassuring the loyalties and getting some philosophical input? Also check. The episode felt like a closing of a mini arc, with Sorey having to travel somewhere while at the same time dealing with everyone’s intentions to profit from him, Alisha (though I’m not even sure whose side on are those guys fighting her. Is an official coup d’état?) finally showed up and also got her plans straight. Well, some soothing atmosphere that stayed during the majority of the episode wasn’t a bad thing, as well as the action bits, and I guess I’ve eventually learned to appreciate what the show has to offer, without expecting any great storytelling deeds or just everything making complete sense.

Little Witch Academia (Ep. 3) 

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    LWA once again does what it does best – family friendly entertainment with no too high stakes or philosophies, but with enough pure fun and enjoyment. The main girls stay true to their characters: Akko, as Diana confirmed, has passion if nothing else, Lotte tries her best without standing out and Sucy proves to be even scary when there’s something she craves. As expected, the other 3 girls finally make their appearances and also don’t stray anywhere form how their characters were defined in the second LWA film. I find myself completely enjoying the sense of humor paired with a good balance of slice of life and very Trigger-like action that the show manages to offer. You can’t at least grin when it turns out how Akko at first was supposed to complete her part of the course without being able to fly. Her relationship building part with her broom also looked funny. Well, the episode crammed much into its time and achieved probably the closest level of enjoyment since the first film (even if there Akko’s first flight was even more impactful).

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  1. Atsuko Kagari – onamae wa? | kyra desu yo!

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