Parasyte, Part One – Review

This week I went back and took a second look at Parasyte, which still holds up pretty well across its first half. In retrospect, it’s less my kind of show than I would have thought a year ago, but it’s still a fine horror-thriller with a lot of polish. The one glaring weakness is, of course, the music. Parasyte’s music sounds like the kind of noise a robot attempting to imitate the concept of human music would create – grating electronic brips and braps that shift jerkily in some uncanny approximation of tempo and melody. But hey, you can’t win ’em all.

You can check out my full review over at ANN!

Winter 2015 – Week 12 in Review

And so the season ends, with solid episodes and flops both largely where you’d expect them. Shirobako ends with a lovely tribute to its entire cast and spirit, Death Parade ends with a brilliantly personal episode that demonstrates the show at its best, and Yuri Kuma pulls out all the stops with one of its most personal and beautiful episodes yet. The rest of this week’s finales varied in quality, but the season remains one of the strongest in recent memory. We’re gonna have to remember this one through the potentially darker months ahead – we’re always lucky to get a season this good.

Incidentally, next week’s Week in Review will be replaced by my eventual, absolutely overwhelmed First Episode Retrospective of Absolutely Everything. I’m guessing I won’t be able to give status reports every few shows this time, since this is going to be the most overwhelming preview week I’ve ever taken part in, but I’ll make sure to let people know as soon as the flood begins. See you all on the other side!

Alright, enough news and reflections. LET’S RUN ‘EM DOWN!

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Parasyte – Episode 24

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.

My full ANN post is available here. Notes below!

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Winter 2015 – Week 11 in Review

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.

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Parasyte – Episode 23

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!

My full ANN post is available here, and notes as always are below.

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Winter 2015 – Week 10 in Review

A strong week in anime this time, with few surprises but plenty of impressive episodes. Some shows have been jostling in position recently, with KimiUso in particular making a major stab at a recovery, but things have mostly settled – Shirobako, Maria, Death Parade, and Yuri Kuma are consistently strong, JoJo and KimiUso are rallying, and the rest are, well, the rest. This has been a very strong season, and I’m ready to see it close out in kind. Let’s run ’em down!

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Parasyte – Episode 22

A strange and strangely enjoyable episode of Parasyte this week. We got the expected Gotou fight, and that was… pretty alright. But then the rest of this episode diverged into a side narrative with a little old lady in the woods, and that was actually quite a nice time! That material felt like it had more grace and energy than the show’s possessed for a while now, so even if it was a diversion, it was a welcome one.

My full ANN post is available here. Notes below!

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Winter 2015 – Week 9 in Review

I’ll just come out and say it – this week kinda sucked. Almost everything on the weaker half of my list either hit a season low point or continued a losing streak, and even Shirobako’s episode was only “great.” I felt kinda awkward just dropping sad remark after sad remark, but this was just not a respectable week for a lot of shows. Fortunately, the top tier remains strong, and that’s definitely the most important thing. Both Death Parade and Maria nailed absolutely critical episodes, Yuri Kuma didn’t make any real missteps, and Shirobako just settled back into “a very solid Shirobako episode.” The season isn’t ending gracefully for some, but things are still gonna be okay. Let’s run ’em down!

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Parasyte – Episode 21

Alright, back on steadier ground. This wasn’t a great episode, but there was good material here, and after last week’s episode I’m just happy to see the show isn’t falling apart altogether. The Hirakawa material reflected fairly well on the show’s progress so far, the big Gotou fight was actually pretty engaging outside of the stupid shounen dialogue, and I’m still enjoying seeing a far less mopey Shinichi. Looks like we’ll be getting out of this with dignity intact!

My full ANN post is available here. Took a bunch of notes this time, and they’re all below!

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Winter 2015 – Week 8 in Review

Highs and lows this week, with stellar performances from Shirobako, Death Parade, and even Rolling Girls, but some real stinkers from Parasyte, Yatterman Night, and others. Honestly not a strong week overall – several of the more reliable shows really dropped the ball, and there’s only so much Shirobako can do to save the entire week by itself. Come on, anime. I know you’ve come to lean on Shirobako, but you gotta at least put out an effort. Shirobako’s not gonna be here to save you forever.

Alright, that’s enough talking about Shirobako, let’s talk about Shirobako. RUNNING ‘EM DOWN!

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