Musings and Reflections – Spring 2021 Week 3

Vivy: Fluorite Eye’s Song (Ep. 4) – Not great when your story requires Evil Twins.
Super Cub (Ep. 3) – A bit more of the same.
Mashiro no Oto (Ep. 3) – Dull, except shamisen stuff.
Fumetsu no Anata e (Ep. 2) – Never liked hyper-energetic kids.

Vivy: Fluorite Eye’s Song (Ep. 4)

  • So that’s what the real OP is like. It’s very energetic and uplifting, something that in my mind distinguishes itself from an average J-pop OPs. Other than that, it’s pretty normal.
  • Wait, what’s the point in making two identical AI sisters but giving them different voices? I can understand maybe hair colours – it’d be useful for distinguishing them. But voices? Why?
  • I have complaints. So, the AI sister failed the test. So what? I don’t understand the implications. In my mind, such a test simply shows how AIs behave, and one way is not necessarily better or worse than another – it’s just how things are. Because of that I don’t get why such an outcome (or any outcome for that matter) was thought of as a failing. And even if that weren’t the case, why would the sister had to be destroyed? She simply could’ve continued working just as another AI. Especially since we already saw Vivy attaching another AI’s arm to her own body, why a faulty AI (which, mind you, she wasn’t) couldn’t be simply recycled? And the scientists did an absolute mess of the destruction. Are AIs that cheap that you can simply dump them whole and don’t care anymore?
  • Somebody failed at understanding the laws of robotics. A world where an AI is designed without a hard-coded idea that it can’t hurt humans no matter what is a world that is immeasurably stupid. If humans in such a world eventually get massacred by AIs, that’s entirely their problem.
  • I don’t remember if I said it before, but as much as I like the beautiful close-ups (Wit’s specialty, how else?), it creates a contrast with other times when the characters are drawn normally, without any special effort. When you see something great, you want to see it constantly, and not just occasionally.
  • All those “I understand, Masta” and “Thank you, Masta” almost made me think I’m watching yet another weird iteration of Fate.
  • Again, AIs whose primary mission should be taking care of people are awfully good at fighting.
  • The lagging metallic voice of the injured sister AI was a very nice touch. The sound department works well.
  • Oh, Vivy’s getting rid of the Bear! Nice move, almost too late though. The less we see of the Bear, the better.

Super Cub (Ep. 3)

  • Well, the animation doesn’t seem to be improving in any way, and it’s highly unlikely it’ll ever will. The CG is still noticeable in not the best of ways. Oh well.
  • It feels like a prequel to Kino’s Journey. When will the bike start speaking?
  • It’s always good to have an energetic mentor-type friend who can help with extra stuff, such as getting various parts, shopping online, or giving advice. Seems like one does need not only a bike to be happy, but also some (or at least one) friend.
  • I wonder how much stability is lost when such a huge box is attached to the bike. Having a safe (and probably water-proof) space for your stuff is always good, but I wonder if it’s really that great.
  • The ending remarks that the girl had nothing but now she has her bike feel cold towards the new girl. Of course, their relationship definitely isn’t overwhelmingly strong, but mentioning her as a friend would’ve been nice. Or at least respectful.
  • The OST in general has a very strong footing in being exactly what a slice of life show needs. I can’t praise it enough. So, this time it’s not Debussy, it’s Chopin, if I’m not mistaken? Good either way.
  • Somehow I started feeling that the show has already said everything it could with the material given. The girl got her bike and one friend, and slowly became accustomed to it. While still most of times gloomy, she now smiles much more often, which is nice, but that’s about it – the show at this point definitely needs something new.

Mashiro no Oto (Ep. 3)

  • I should probably say a few words about the OP, but, well, it’s just there. Of course I wholeheartedly approve the use of shamisen in it (otherwise it would’ve probably been a blasphemy), but other than that, the song’s pleasant enough, the imagery is ok, but it’s just not particularly memorable.
  • Somehow the whole look of the show, and especially parts set in high-school make me feel like it’s not a freshly finished product, but something that might’ve been exciting in early 2000s, but now it’s just plain. (Apart from having some shamisen stuff, naturally.) Especially with the flat look the show has embraced I can’t take seriously this Shuri girl. To me she looks not like a serious character but just like she really is – an always fangirling a bit clumsy but always good-meaning shoujo manga protagonist from 2000s.
  • Well, I actually feel a bit cheated. The first ep. was about a grumpy dude in his 20s leaving countryside to live in Tokyo, and then somehow it all transitioned into that dude in 20s actually being way younger and for that reason turning everything into a cheap high school drama which I was purposefully trying to avoid when choosing this show. It’s true that the music remains, but that’s probably the sole reason that keeps me watching.
  • When the music starts, the show suddenly gets very serious. It’s quite logical – capitalizing on its strengths and uniqueness, and doing it pretty good. O the other hand, this unevenness in quality makes the scenes that don’t have to do anything with music look extremely dull.

Fumetsu no Anata e (Ep. 2)

  • Hm, I guess I just learned a new word from the episode title– rambunctious.
  • Well, I don‘t have my own kids, so I don‘t really enjoy their presence (or is it the other way around?) Anyway, such talkative specimens as March certainly don‘t qualify as my favourite anime characters.
  • The boy’s transformation scene looked as creepy as it should. But the creature itself is pretty interesting. Does it always try to reincarnate into a more complex form of existence? Did it like the boy‘s body so much that it remained there even after multiples deaths?
  • The second episode does feel like the continuation of the first, but it doesn‘t really have the same emotional punch. There‘re lots of new characters and because of that they have very little screen time. Sure, a story with a little girl getting sacrificed can be very touching, but at least this time it wasn‘t the case. Only March received more screen time than a mere supporting character, but again, so far to me she‘s more annoying than adorable or at least neutral. I guess the coming episodes could try to build the culture of the village and the supporting characters because the foundations are there (especially remembering the first episode), but everything else still feels unfinished.
  • Pretty weird, that my conclusions sound very similar to what I thought after the first episode – the show has every opportunity to be great, but I‘m still not sure these opportunities will be realized. The show just is, without a clear direction or objective.
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