Musings and Reflections – Fall 2018 Week 7

One phrase impressions

RErideD: Tokigoe no Derrida – Oh dear…
Sword Art Online: Alicization
– Convenient time-skip is convenient…
Banana Fish – Nothing important…
Golden Kamuy 2 – Ohohohohohohooooi!

RErideD: Tokigoe no Derrida (Ep. 11)

RErideD: Tokigoe no Derrida Derrida Donna

  • Oh dear, characters stay  off-model probably more time than on.
  • “The target of the bombing includes all land within our borders.” Uhm… What else is there to bomb but land? You’re not saying they’re considering bombing an ocean, are you?
  • I’m watching it and remembering all these great shows (and some not so) that did everything far better than RErideD. Weird title and time travel – Steins;Gate. Walking in a dystopian ruins? Girls’ Last Tour. A talking vehicle? Kino no Tabi. A show with Yoshitoshi ABe? Basically everything else ABe has part in making of.
  • The soundtrack was pretty good during the action scenes but they seemed pointless at this point. The protagonists will never die so no matter how many robots or humans or who knows what will attack, the heroes will always win. Donna’s appearance was also inevitable. Damn, it’s just plain and boring.
  • So, the robot who took Angelica’s personality didn’t possess emotions? Well, last episode it seemed pretty emotional. The whole experiment was carried out to see if a machine could adopt Angelica’s personality, and that comes with emulating responses to various stimuli. And who can object that an elevated response isn’t an emotion? What is an emotion in the first place? Isn’t that a specific neurochemical activity? Can’t a robot do that? Or at least mimic that?
  • Anyway, a person being confused about her being a robot or a human could be a powerful theme. Once again, I appreciate the idea but not really the realization. Donna’s monologue about advances of science leading to evil has some truth, but her argument is easily disposed of by stating that not an invention itself, but its use is the key. You can use atomic power for either making electricity or bombing stuff. Does that automatically make atomic energy evil? Is creating electricity evil? The truth is that only by the abuse of power can inventions lead to bad places – it’s not machines themselves, it’s people controlling them that are responsible.
  • So, Derrida and Yuri left Mayuka alone and the kid by herself to run through all the enemy soldiers (and Donna) to her father who’s shooting some mad robots? Thinking realistically, what are the chances for her to survive such a trip? Thank goodness that’s it’s only an anime. What a good parenting!

Sword Art Online: Alicization (Ep. 7)

Sword Art Online: Alicization Kirito Liena

  • The so nice atmosphere made by efforts of Yuki Kajiura was destroyed instantly when the dialogue between Kirito and Eugeo went the route of “Oh, it’s been two years since the last episode, why don’t we recap everything?” In theory it might work but this trope is used so much and, how to say, needlessly and brutally, that my joy of watching anime is instantly turned off. Come on, is there another so inelegant way of info-dumping stuff? Can you be more forceful while trying to advance the story than doing that via abrupt flash-forwards? Stories are made enjoyable through effort put in making all the elements click together and have a natural flow. Effortlessly skipping to a convenient point One Eternity Later is not particularly excusable. Another point is that during these two years Kirito and Eugeo didn’t change one bit. They say “Oh, so much did happen”, but it doesn’t matter, does it? It’s like both of them were put to cryogenic sleep and woke up a day (or so) before the episode – they still have the same exact relationship, Kirito didn’t do anything to get home though he apparently still cares about that. Unless that’s not true and he doesn’t care about Asuna anymore and is content to spend the rest of his life trying to find a girl he also doesn’t really care about (again, in two years he didn’t get closer to knowing anything about Alice either). It’s just inconsistent. Kirito neither tried to get home, nor attempted to find Alice, and just lived a happy life with his artificial buddy. As if the real world doesn’t really matter anymore. Come on, dude enjoys some laid-back gardening in order to give some pixel flowers to his pixel senpai, while his real girlfriend probably cries herself to sleep, worried about his almost-fried brain. If that’s not ungrateful, I don’t know what is. I understand that there might be no way for Kirito to disconnect from within, but the dude isn’t even trying!
  • And this thinking about meta stuff prevented me from getting invested into the story itself – I just kept seeing only what’s wrong. Kirito got into trouble with the supposedly the best swordsmen around? So what? Kirito still is as OP as usual. He’ll have no trouble. Why should all these new swords, senpais, bullies and other swordsmen matter?
  • At least some action held up, and Megumi Han’s voice was as great as always.

Banana Fish (Ep. 19)

Banana Fish troubled Ash molested

  • Yeah, saying “baka” and running away automatically proves you’re right.
  • Somehow this time Yut Lung’s mind games seemed off, as if he wasn’t even trying that much. In the first place, Yut Lung’s behavior this time was more like something a spoiled brat could pull off, and certainly not a calculating mastermind who climbed to the top through corpses of his own brothers. It’s true that Yut Lung probably isn’t much older than Ash and Eiji, so some streaks of irrational behavior should be expected from him. Still, what this episode showed in my mind comes as a too large contrast to the usual Yut Lung we’re familiar with.
  • If they use New York, US, Japan and similar location names freely, what’s the point in censoring Afghanistan?
  • Yut Lung’s machinations don’t work every time, so as far as I understand it, the only serious enemy Ash has is Golzine. Not as in the Golzine cartel but Mr. Golzine as a person. And that person is the only reason why Ash has to deal with Golzine’s cartel. And then I don’t understand how Ash, who already has killed for lesser reasons, is able to restrain himself from strangling Golzine with his bare hands. And why, which is a more important question. Last time, when kidnapped, Ash struggled quite a lot to get out of the hospital, and eventually succeeded. Now he’ snot even attempting to try. Why is that? Is it because of Eiji? Well, send the kid back to Japan and be done with it. Period.
  • To think about it, this episode provided surprisingly low amount of new information. Ash is depressed and Blanca joined Yut Lung – that’s everything I deem important. Everything else was almost a recap – Ash’s gang and Eiji trying to look cool and come up with some plans, Golzine abusing Ash and stating (for the n-th time) that he’ll either subjugate Ash completely or will kill him. Well, I’ve seen that before. Next episode, please.

Golden Kamuy 2 (Ep. 7 /19/)

Golden Kamuy Season 2 Team stand photo

  • Oh no, a flashback containing the bear! Hm, it’s weird that we get another flashback about that mad hunter dude whom I had completely forgotten. These flashbacks don’t serve much in terms of advancing the story, and that kind of flashbacks are usually used for the first or the last episode of a season, and I’m leaning more towards the latter. Well, flashbacks always add the feeling of continuity, but I didn’t really want to remember CG bears. Anyway, the first part of the episode as a whole looked like it would’ve been a far better ending of the first season. I don’t know, maybe this part of the story was the last chapter of some volume of the manga? Anyway, it did feel odd to have Asirpa reconfirm her determination (among all these flashbacks) and for the whole group to walk in to the (almost) sunset. Such a vibe (in the middle of the season) seems to be as out of place as the unfinished-ness of the last season. Strange.
  • Any time Ainu culture gets the spotlight, I’m very happy. Conversely, I’m not in sync with the comedy. I never was interested in Tsurumi and that fast-speaking dude in the first place, so their relationship to me seems like a wasted opportunity to give more time to, for example, Asirpa. Oh well, I get on with the comedy of Golden Kamuy like oil and water, so it’s nothing unexpected.
  • Well, Ogata also turns out to have a tragic backstory. I kind of liked him previously so the backstory had a bigger effect on me than it should’ve. I’d say that in principle throwing a concentrated and relatively short flashback with all this death and suffering without any preparations before isn’t the best strategy. Best character development is gradual. Do I now see Ogata in a different light than before? Does his actions are better explained? Do I have a better grasp of his motivations and goals? To every question I must answer almost a completely straight “no”. This flashback could’ve actually been centered around any of the characters, say, Sugimoto or Shiraishi. And while by itself the story definitely was tragic, it wasn’t organically bound to Ogata’s character and thus seemed a bit artificial. Sure, I’ll respect Ogata a bit more from now on but that’s pretty much everything I got from the flashback. And that’s a pity.

 

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4 Comments

  1. I thought Yut Lang’s motivation was stronger at the start but they are losing a bit of that now it seems.

    Liked by 1 person

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  2. There’s a slew of good stuff that came out this season; hopefully you’ll get to watch them someday!

    Liked by 1 person

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    • Yeah, my picks turned out to be more or less disastrous. On the other hand, the best stuff still awaits me. I hope I’ll catch up with at least Irozuku and Bunny Girl Senpai eventually.

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