Sound! Euphonium 2 – Episode 13

At last, it ends. Euphonium’s second season was far messier than the first, and was partially hamstrung by adopting a middle book that always felt fairly superfluous, but it sure did come together well. Asuka and Kumiko’s material has always been some of the best in the series, and watching their relationship grow over the course of this season was a wonderful experience. This was a graceful and poignant epilogue to a consistently rewarding series. Those friggin’ euphoniums did it again.

You can check out my excessively huge review over at ANN, or my notes below.

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Girlish Number – Episode 12

Girlish Number ended with as happy of an ending as you might have hoped for, and frankly a bit happier of an ending than I expected. Even Kuzu-P got to act like a big damn hero this time, though at least his smug posturing was quickly cut down by Chitose. Overall, this was mostly just a workmanly finale to a generally solid show. I’m sad this one sold like crap mostly because I’d like to see Wataru Watari continue to write anime-originals – but hopefully this doesn’t really impact his future plans. Anime could desperately use more prolific writers who construct people so well.

You can check out my full review over at ANN, or my notes below.

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Planetes – Episode 19

The Von Braun is preparing to set sail, and all likely crewmates must head to earth. In the wake of last episode’s mine defusal, the Debris Section has found itself with a new lease on life. Having leaked the footage from the event, the section is hailed as heroes, and become too politically popular to fire. That’s all that their footage accomplishes, of course – INTO is a multinational corporation, and so the revelation that they’re laying mines for their political enemies doesn’t really have any other effect. In an age where the United States already bombs civilians to take out kill-worthy targets, it’d be more fantastical for INTO to actually be harmed by this setback.

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March comes in like a lion – Episode 11

March took things a little easier this week, finally giving Rei some time to rest and hang out with the Kawamotos after two straight episodes of tough matches and sisterly abuse. Of course, this is still March comes in like a lion, so that rest and relaxation was prefaced by Rei falling into a fever so deep he could barely take care of himself. But most of this episode was charming slice of life material, and again demonstrated how well the show has established its general platform. I’m happy to share some warm holiday memories with this show’s wonderful crew.

You can check out my full review over at ANN, or my episode notes below.

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Nichijou – Episode 20

NICHIJOU HAS RETURNED. It feels like forever since I last watched Nichijou, but in truth, it’s only been a few days. I’m sure I’ve moaned about this before, but we’re getting to the point where just a little too much of my emotional well-being is dependent on a constant influx of new Nichijou. Without Yuuko, Nano, and the professor to keep me sane, this would have been a cold and treacherous season – after all, from the point where I’m writing this, I’m still waiting for the results of the worst election in US history. And that’s not even hyperbole! Not even close!

But politics suck and I hate them and I’ll reserve that talk for shows that warrant it. In the meantime, there are still good things in the world: seven of them, in fact. Seven episodes of Nichijou. LET’S GET RIGHT TO THE FIRST ONE.

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Eureka Seven – Episode 7

Alright, back to the Gekkostate for more Eureka Seven. I’m guessing we’re still in random adventure episodes at this point, given so little of the cast has gotten much focus time yet, but that’s fine by me. Eureka Seven has established a strong platform for episodic rambling, and given the show’s enduring reputation, I assume it will probably get better over time. So let’s see what’s happening with Holland and his merry men!

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Sound! Euphonium 2 – Episode 12

Sound! Euphonium’s nationals competition arrived, and it was… well, certainly not the episode anyone was expecting. But skipping the big concert altogether was only the first of this episode’s goofy tricks – we also got a series of fist bumps, an absurd confession scene, and some of the most dedicated Reina dunking the show has ever provided. This was a surprisingly light and fun episode, given the band ended up only taking home the bronze, but it also landed a strong sequence of key emotional moments near the end. We might not have gotten another gorgeous performance scene, but this episode still seemed just about right.

You can check out my full review over at ANN, or my notes below.

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Girlish Number – Episode 11

Girlish Number had a kinda superfluous episode this week, mostly dedicated to building up Chitose’s sense of dread before she finally cracked. There were nice character moments here and there, but I couldn’t help but think this runtime could have have been put to better use giving us a more clear idea of Gojo’s feelings, so his final turn would actually carry some weight. Still, the episode got where it needed to go eventually, wasted minutes aside.

You can check out my full review over at ANN, or my notes below.

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Nichijou – Episode 19

It’s time for more NICHIJOU!!! I was briefly worried earlier because I thought we might be approaching the end of the series, but then I realized it’s twenty-six episodes instead of twenty-two, and my emotional stability was regained. I may fall into a bleak and inescapable depression when I run out of Nichijou, but that’s still a whole half-dozen episodes from now! Either way, let’s enjoy this summer of anime comedy richness while we can, reveling in this show’s inexplicable existence. NICHIJOU GO.

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March comes in like a lion – Episode 10

This might not have been March’s overall best episode, but it certainly had one of the show’s best sequences. The finale here, where Rei finally let out all the resentment that had been building over Kyouko’s actions and the odd “selfishness” of his opponents, was an absolute stunner, and the rest of the episode was very solid as well. I guess you have to really enjoy “shows about people who are sad” to get that much out of March, but it sure is a great sad person show.

You can check out my full review over at ANN, or my notes below.

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