Somewhat busy with family time at the moment (I got nice things!), but not so busy I can’t run down a tumultuous week in anime! Shows ending, shows immolating, some satisfying finales and some dramatic lead-ins to second cours. Presents for everyone this holiday season.
Alright, KyoAni. Let’s do this. There’ve been stumbles in the past, crippling, foundation-withering stumbles, but these last two episodes have been pretty goddamn kickass. Last episode’s finale in particular was a real standout sequence – if you build on that, you can at least make a respectable landing. This show ultimately failed to be the show I was looking for, but… but goddamnit, it’s still a show! Let’s finish strong.
What can I even say about this week? Everything got ridiculous. Everything got climactic. Everything got cathartic. I’ve dropped everything I was iffy on, and all the shows I’ve enjoyed are pulling off thrilling finales. Let’s get slobbery.
And we’re back. Last episode was quite an upset – plot-wise and direction-wise, I thought it was actually pretty fantastic. Atmospheric, creative, full of nice little details… on its own, I felt it was a very strong episode. That said, I’m pretty much never a fan of this “care about characters in retrospect” style of reveal – of all the things to keep as a secret, I think “the reason you should be invested in what’s happening” is about the worst possible choice. Felt it was a bad choice in Fate/Zero (I found that show’s entire first half pretty much emotionally sterile, and scattering the events of the longer flashback sequence from season 2 throughout would have probably fixed that entirely), felt it was a bad choice here. The only way I feel it can work is if you’re already invested in the characters involved – and that not being the case here was pretty much the fatal flaw for what was in the abstract an extremely compelling episode.
But negativity aside, great direction and smart storytelling are nothing to sneeze at, and last episode had plenty of those. I’ve also heard this episode has animation out to here, so that should be fun. Let’s get to it!
Welp, the season’s winding down and, as always, with it comes both rising tension in our favorite shows and a bracing awareness of our inescapable mortality. Let’s run down the list!
Well I for one am ready for some crazy shit to go down. The last few minutes of last week’s episode seemed to imply Mirai has actually been a crazy assassin this entire time, what with her admission to Hiromi and taking off the glasses and all that. Would her being a secret assassin save this series? No, of course not, the show’s emotionally sterile and wildly inconsistent. Would it allow for some crazy plot shenanigans and epic showdowns between our protagonists? Hell yeah. Plus it might even make Mirai more interesting, and god knows the girl needs it. Back to our star-crossed lovers!
Nothing too out of the ordinary this week. The season has settled – the good shows are very consistent, the bad shows have been dropped, and those in the middle are 2-cours, hopefully building towards something noteworthy. Running it down…
It’s kind of pointless to talk about this week in anime without addressing the gorilla in the room, so let’s get that out of the way first.
Time to Get Calm, everybody (or, if you’re awful, Everybody Stay Calm). We’ve got one battle already underway and a whole lot of protagonists running from places towards various other places. Meanwhile: Akihito is asleep. I’ve heard this episode is kind of absurdly flush with key animators, meaning action scenes ahoy. I’m hoping this one maintains the visual flare of the earlier scenes while adding a little more sense of weight to the back-and-forth, but honestly I’ll settle for visual flare either way. Let’s get to it!
This was a surprisingly stellar week in anime, considering the best show of the season decided to have a live-action tea party. All three of my other favorites stepped up significantly, each showing off with their best episodes of the season to date. Let’s run those down!