And so season two comes to an end. This was about as much of an “ending” as I expected – we got a variety of resolutions, but even more gestures towards future material that may or may not ever exist. The raid boss fight was a lot of fun, Kanami and Shiroe have really great interactions, and it was nice (if a little anticlimactic) to see Crusty’s perfectly okay. Overall, season two felt significantly stronger than the first, and though we definitely cashed in a lot of the show’s existing conflict-chips, I’m sure this author could think of all sorts of ways to continue the story. Here’s to hoping we actually get that season three one day.
The reviews keep coming! This time it’s KimiUso’s turn, a show so damn pretty that I really wish it were just slightly better constructed. This was one of my shorter reviews, but I got through what I wanted to say – I’m sure plenty of other people can talk about which specific characters could have used more texture, or which episodes exactly could have been excised to fix the pacing overall. I was going for tone here, and I’m pretty happy with the result.
And Parasyte finally ends, with an episode that sure was incredibly boring to write about. I’m pretty happy to see it over, honestly – it’s been something of a trial in this second half, doing a full day of work only to know I’ll have to come home and say something about a show that could never quite be as good as I wanted it to. Ah well. I’ve watched plenty of ultimately disappointing anime, I’m sure I’ll watch plenty more.
Oh what’s this another stellar week in anime jeez tell me something I don’t know. All the best shows feel like they’re not even competing with each other anymore – they’re competing for placement on the end-of-year list. In contrast to last year, where I struggled to think of more than seven shows I’d be happy recommending, here we’ve almost got half a list already filled out. Shirobako is a legend, Death Parade is uneven but has staggering highs, Maria is consistently excellent and brimming with great characters, and Yuri Kuma Arashi is a little emotionally lacking but full of ideas and beauty. We also had a great finale for KimiUso and strong episodes for both Log Horizon and JoJo. What the hell is up with this season.
More streaming reviews! These reviews are actually a pretty great compromise between doing a Wrong Every Time piece and just, well, not writing about a show at all. Some shows don’t really reward the full theme-based pieces, but it’s still fun to talk about them. Although between Eccentric Family and all the Monogats, I do think I’m getting better at adapting what I liked about my old style into ANN pieces…
The bears have returned! Lulu seems to be out of the picture for the time being, while Ginko has come back to devour Kureha. And Kureha has finally appeared before the bear court, who we now know are clearly here just to fuck with things in ways they find amusing, and adjust the rules whenever they feel like it. Will Kureha have to wager something to save Ginko, as Lulu and Ginko did in the past? Is love impossible without giving up something equally valuable? ONLY THE BEARS KNOW.
A surprisingly excellent episode here at the tail end of Log Horizon II. The focus and production were just on a much higher level than usual, and Shiroe’s very understandable dilemma gave the whole thing a well-defined structure. Seeing the whole team work together was nice, seeing that team brought to life through some actual animation was even better, and in general the whole thing just worked, and moved the quest to go home in a fairly compelling direction.
Welp, at least we’ll always have the fights. This episode really brought Rolling Girls’ narrative failings to the fore, with the busyness of this arc’s storytelling offering pretty much no emotional hooks whatsoever. But yeah. The fights! Plenty of fun fights this week, plenty of beautiful backgrounds, not an ounce of narrative sense. Ah well.
It’s Monogatari time again! I don’t even know what words I have left to intro this piece – I’ve written the crap out of Monogatari, and will likely continue to write it up until the sun goes black in the sky. But Hitagi End is definitely a special one. Kaiki elevates the series, many characters reach dramatic personal revelations, and there’s virtually no Araragi at all. Everything you could want in a Monogatari arc.
The strongest Parasyte in a while this week, with both the action and themey-wemey sides of the show putting up strong performances. The Gotou fight was the most well-depicted one in a while (a long while, actually… hell, maybe ever? Parasyte hasn’t exactly had the most impressive fights), and the final Shinichi-Migi conversation was great on both a character and idea level. I really thought the show was just falling apart altogether a few episodes ago, but this post-police stakeout arc has been pretty solid. Nice to see!