The final week has arrived! And there’s… basically nothing to talk about. With JoJo already over and Blood Blockade Battlefront resting up before its oversized finale, the only non-ANN shows I actually had to watch this week were Unlimited Blade Works and Ore Monogatari!! And I didn’t even watch OreMono! Sorry OreMono, I just couldn’t find the time/interest for you – as I’ve said before, OreMono isn’t one of those shows that fills me with desire to catch up when I’m not watching it, and considering the sort of static rhythms it’s gotten into over time, it’s just hard to muster up the enthusiasm. So we’ve got a mini-sized Week in Review this week, but don’t worry – with the summer season about to begin, there’ll be pleeenty to talk about soon enough. The preview guide is waiting. I can hear its call. Soon, soon, all will burn.
Alright, let’s run down what we’ve got!
Sound! Euphonium 13: A fantastic finale to a stunning show. This has been KyoAni’s strongest show since Hyouka by miles, and overall is likely more consistent than even that one. It’s a welcome return to form for a very talented studio, and this episode was a pretty strong reflection of everything great about it. Lots of nice character moments that played off how much we’ve learned about the whole band, lots of thematic reflections bouncing across the cast, and some absolutely gorgeous bits of animation scattered across both the performance and the little character interactions. Euphonium ends strong, securing its place in both my end-of-year and all-time lists.
The Disappearance of Nagato Yuki-chan 13: And the disappearance arc ended with one more strong episode, this one focusing more on Nagato’s emotions than the creepy mechanics of her situation. I thought it went a bit over the top at a couple moments, but was overall a very effective resolution to the arc, buoyed by strong color work and general direction. Here’s hoping the show doesn’t immediately go back to derpy romcom lala land.
Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works 25: That was a nice epilogue! This episode was calm and endearing and full of the kind of nice character moments that occasionally made the first half work so well. There was a randomly fantastic fight scene (I don’t even know why they put that here – if they had a trick like that stored up, couldn’t they have used it somewhere the second season actually needed it?) and lots of silly Rin faces and a great cameo by Waver. The backgrounds were lovely, the music was peaceful, and the whole thing just felt light and friendly and enjoyable. The show’s felt intensely labored for a long time, so it was nice to see it seem comfortable with itself again before it headed off. This second half has been a disaster overall, but it’s always good to end on a high note.
Oregairu S2 13: Oregairu is over, but my heart will go on. I’m actually perfectly satisfied with this resolution; we got key steps forward from both Yui and Yukino, and the overall episode gave us a bunch more cute moments with the main three just enjoying time together. There’s certainly more the show could say (and considering its success, it seems likely we’ll see more), but there’s always more to say. Growing up is a process, and Oregairu has depicted that process with empathy and insight. This second season was an unexpected gift, and I feel almost weirdly proud of how far the show has come.
Ore Monogatari!! 12: Yes, I did indeed say I hadn’t watched OreMono. But I wrote that opening blurb at around 8 PM on Tuesday, and after that found myself with a little more free time, and so I snuck the dang thing in. And the episode was… well, definitely an OreMono episode. Lots of silly faces, lots of Yamato being adorable and Takeo being a dork, and a couple solid jokes. My favorite gag this time was far and away Suna just slowly closing the door on Yamato snuggling with Takeo, but I was also a fan of the more easy chemistry this episode compared to the very Anime Romance beach trip. The show’s still sitting in a pretty static and intimacy-averse slice of life neutral (comparing this show to some of the far-more-heated scenes from Euphonium kind of hammers in how chaste all of this is), but it’s certainly pleasant enough. I’m not sure if I’ll make it to the end, but I’m holding on for now!