Musings and Reflections – Summer 2018 Week 12

One phrase impressions

Shingeki no Kyojin 3 – Attack on (an exceptionally beautiful) Titan.
Hanebado!
– Preparations before the big match.
Yama no Susume 3 – Finally some happiness.
Banana Fish – Halloween? Now?
Sirius the Jaeger – Orbs and boxes/arcs and vampires and stuff.

Shingeki no Kyojin 3 (Ep. 9 /46/)

Rod Reiss titan Attack on Titan

  • I wonder what makes one titan sentient and not another. Is it random? Normal titans seem unable to think and have only an autopilot regime, but there was an OVA episode where a seemingly normal titan even spoke coherent words. Special cases like Annie or that monkey-titan clearly were conscious. Mr. Reiss also doesn’t look like the most normal of titans. In fact, both he and Annie have been called Abnormals. Yet, Reiss’s motivations seem to be as simple as going where the most people are in order to eat them. So, where is the line between conscious titans and unconscious? What does being an Abnormal mean? Which titans can have clear goals and well-thought-out plans to achieve them? Well, what are titans to begin with?
  • Truly Historia’s transformation from a damsel in distress to a glorious heroine has been too quick. But even as it is, I don’t dislike it. Historia managed to sacrifice her wish to have a family and a loving dad for a greater good, and such strong personalities are definitely appealing – both for the masses of people in the world of Attack of Titan and the anime viewers as well. The current Historia is quite suitable to be the main lead of the show, especially since Eren is having problems with his self-depreciation cycle. Which in itself also isn’t a bad thing – too often anime protagonists are shielded by the plot armor and do nothing but heroic deeds. In such a context a lead who learns to be humble and see the world not through the lens of a protagonist is a very good thing indeed. When Eren was out of action, I (and probably many others) didn’t really miss him. Historia could really replace him but sadly that doesn’t seem to be possible.
  • What a wonderful sight! Though I doubt that those kids appreciated the fact that they saw an upgraded version of what young Eren saw. A half open titan is something I really didn’t expect. But that poses quite a few questions – how was he able to crawl with an open stomach? A single tree might have ripped his entrails completely if they miraculously managed to withstand friction with the ground. And it’s a bit funny – the information card between both halves of the show declared that Reiss titan crawls because he can’t walk due to his immense mass. But mere minutes later he is shown standing like it’s nothing. What? I shouldn’t probably bring in biology and physics there but seeing such a case of gigantism messes with my knowledge about how big life forms on Earth can be. Blue whales and largest dinosaurs were up to 40 m long, and blue whales have to live underwater in the first place because they couldn’t support their weight in the atmosphere otherwise. It’s told (not in the anime) that Reiss’s height is 120 m (40 m at withers while crawling) so count me not completely bought. But yeah, I can’t deny that such a monster does make a spectacle.
  • I think that Kenny producing another syringe doesn’t mean that he will attempt to use it. The preview indicates that the next episode will contain a lengthy flashback and that would make little sense if Kenny survived. Also, a syringe could probably be more useful in other hands. For example I would love to see Hange experiment with it.  Still, I feel that Kenny could still be used more, or at least that he hasn’t lived up to his bombastic introduction yet. Perhaps that’s due to the manga arc spanning way longer but with little objections I think that this accelerated pacing in the anime is quite fitting.
  • Historia’s spine should have been crushed completely. Oh well. Maybe all the airbags in the world should be exchanged for anime carts?

Also, I wrote this so I guess some advertising can’t hurt.

Hanebado! (Ep. 11)

Hanebado match Ayano Nagisa

  • I don’t know, if Uchika really left Ayano because she thought that the girl needed to find a way to appreciate the sport without her continuous struggle to be acknowledged, it’s a dumb move. As a legend has it, there’s a special move called talking that apparently can resolve many problems. Only very few problems take care of themselves if you leave them be and probably fewer kids become model citizens if their parent thought “screw it, they’ll figure everything out themselves, it’s not my job”. Whatever Uchika really thought at the time doesn’t change the fact that Ayano was left seriously traumatized so the mommy should probably come off her high horse and finally acknowledge that.
  • I really starting to think that Ayano’s villainy has been pushed too far. She definitely has a reason to be a jerk, but not such a huge jerk. Well, to some extent it’s great that a clear protagonist has been demoted to a despicable antagonist but everything should have limits. Especially if the story will try to redeem Ayano and move on – it would be extremely difficult to make her likable again from what she is now.
  • The show is saving its resources (if there are any left) for the last stretch so the start of the final match was a bit underwhelming. Of course I’m happy that Nagisa so far remains on top but the presentation left lots to be desired. Earlier I said I appreciated how well commenting was integrated into the matches – it worked because apart from the voice-overs there was action to be seen and to be praised. This time Hanebado descends into a very conventional style of interplay between minimal amount of action and a (not) healthy dose of Kaoruko’s commentary. For whom is she speaking by the way?
  • Where’s Connie? I’d guess that a girl so inclined to make Ayano her sister should at least come to her match. But we didn’t see her at all. Weird. Speaking about Connie, where is she living? I assumed that she had a very good relationship with Uchika, so it’s weird that they’re staying separately. Especially if their relationship is really mother-daughter-like. Well, that family is an incarnation of a concept of a problem so I guess it’s nothing unexpected after all.

Yama no Susume 3 (Ep. 12)

Yama no Susume 3 Aoi Hinata

  • A healthy dose of mountaineering is the finest remedy after all. It took some effort for Hinata to back down and admit that she both had been overexerting herself too much and not trying too much to be honest but in the end everything turned out well, just as expected. It has been a rather long arc but I think all the build up was natural and it also naturally reached a conclusion. These moments when the girls once again started having fun and everything became clear and shiny are what the show can be proud of.
  • I guess once again I should praise character animation. Hinata’s walking and focus on her legs made the whole situation feel not that ordinary and added up to the suspense before she decided to acknowledge her trauma.
  • And now I wonder what will happen next. One episode to go and everything is pretty much sorted out already. If I may wish, that would be more Kaede and more Honoka. But, well, it has been a satisfying season so I think anything of the same quality as usual will be more than fine.

Banana Fish (Ep. 12)

Banana Fish Eiji Ash confrontation

  • The show again acknowledged fundamental differences between Ash and Eiji. They try to get closer, they talk about personal stuff, they try to make the other experience foreign culture via food… Yet, it seems that no matter how much effort is put in, it’s just not meant to be. Just like Yin and Yang that are always together and even have little parts of each other inside, they never mingle completely. There’s no grey color, there’s only black and white. Ash tries to both keep Eiji and send him away, Eiji himself wants to grant every wish of Ash but at the same time pushes his own moral values on his friend. The guys are just too different at this point. They can be friends, they can have great time together but in the end it’s still just to separate people who have so little in common.
  • I somehow doubt that a respectable gang leader would allow a possible enemy to enter his hideout without checking whether he’s armed or not. The scene was flashy but rather unbelievable.
  • A funny detail – when Eiji approached Ash in the library, the environment became brighter. I’m a rhino if that wasn’t on purpose.
  • I’m still not sure that all this conspiracy theory including government really needs something like Banana Fish so badly. Enough money and one or two decent assassins could do the job just fine, and without using such an unpredictable stuff like this master drug.
  • That Halloween part came absolutely from nowhere. The timing could’ve been better synchronized with the real world.
  • Last time I remarked that there’re no girls in the show. Ash telling that “everyone wants to be a girlfriend of a boss” seems ok, but only theoretically because we’ve seen absolutely no evidence backing Ash’s story. He might be not interested in anyone anymore but there really should be at least some girls connected with the mafia, right?
  • So, the last episode of the season will probably feature the confrontation between Ash and Arthur. It has been brewing for some time. Let’s do it!

Sirius the Jaeger (Ep. 11)

Sirius the Jaeger vampire tongue

  • Episode after episode I become more and more convinced that even if several elements like a studio and a director are generally to my liking, it doesn’t matter that their efforts will always bring something I’ll enjoy. Yeah, the fights are pretty good, but that’s all. And even when I think about the fights – somebody should just take out a gun and be done with it. It’s not like everyone has to fight with swords and daggers.
  • Oh, so there’s a reveal. Well, Bishop felt a bit shady from the start. It’s not too common for an important and nice supporting character to appear when the show is getting to the finish line. Especially not for the show that is prone to be rather conventional. Yuliy’s reasoning “I saw your eyes and decided to overlook the fact that you’re a vampire” is simply playing with fire. Sure, people might read others’ emotions but when the stakes are high, it’s better to be wary. Apparently not for Yuliy.
  • As far as I see it, even Bishop didn’t benefit from the vampires catching up with the group while they were underground. So why then did he reveal his identity knowing full well that the vampires were nearby? He could’ve done that somewhere safe after the group left underground – they probably could’ve evaded the vampires and saved Bishop’s head. And, well, what did Bishop expect? There’s a super powerful vampire out there and he’s, with all due respect, just a pawn. He must have collected the orb and left as quickly as possible. Or tried to help Yuliy and the devise something together.
  • Even the confrontation between Yuliy and Mikhail didn’t feel exciting. The tender parts I liked more, but a little thing plus nothing is still not too much.

 

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4 Comments

  1. I agree with what you wrote about Historia’s character. I think she grew up a little bit too fast indeed, but that said I still like the way her character is now. Still…it once again would have been nice to see Mikasa up her game too, but again we get to see very little of her in this episode. This titan was just awesome, disgusting but so much fun. Yes probably best not to look to closely at the physics of it all, but still…when it produces this kind of entertainment you will hear no complaints from me. And yes I don’t think Kenny is going to the syringe either 😊

    Liked by 1 person

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  2. I cannot wait until he confronts Arthor the end of this episode left me screaming. I like how they just don’t seem like quiet the right fit but they need each other in these moments. Interesting how this relationship will change. Or if they change each other.

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