Everything Else, Spring ’14, Week 3: Getting the small fries out of the way

JoJo's Bizarre Adventure - Stardust Crusaders - 0302

Say what? Regarding Mushishi, I’m still watching it. I’ll cover the third episode later this week along with the fourth one.

Atelier Escha & Logy – Alchemists of the Dusk Sky Ep. 2

Holy shit, this is the most softball anime to ever exist. Oh dear, a village is out of water! We need to concoct a Bottle of Purity, which is a medicine that can remove any contamination from a body of water! But oh no, we need a bitter leaf to brew this Bottle of Purity! Let’s go foraging for it in some nearby ruins! And in said ruins, we meet some friends!

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Yay! We then find the leaf!

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Yay! We can then restore the water for the villagers!

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Yay! End episode. C’mon, man, this is literally just some mundane starter quest from an RPG come to life. That being said, when you take away the character interaction from an RPG adaptation but add nothing else to it, all you’re often left with is a shitty story. There’s nothing here to make you think that this is worth watching over just playing the actual RPG itself. This is not how adaptations work. Adaptations should stand on their own, and this clearly does not.

Bokura wa Minna Kawaisou Ep. 3

Bokura wa Minna Kawaisou - 0301


Nothing has really changed since the last episode. Kazunari is still throwing himself at Ritsu’s feet to no avail. Mayumi is still portrayed stereotypically as a single adult woman pining for love from horrible men. I guess the one solace here is that she regains a bit of her dignity by the end of the episode, but meh… what can you say when someone keeps putting themselves in such negative situations? Shiro is, well, Shiro. So I guess we’ll talk about Sayaka instead. She seems needlessly cruel. If Mayumi gets played by two-timing (or even three-timing) men, Sayaka’s the type to toy with other people’s feelings, stringing them along for God only knows why. She enjoys crushing their hearts, I guess. All of the other characters are at least just pathetic, hence the pun in the anime’s title, but Sayaka seems unrepentantly horrible. I know it’s supposed to be funny in theory, but you still get the sense that the show is distrustful of adults in general. That somehow, the kids have got it right, and Ritsu can thus lecture Mayumi on how the adult woman should grow up and get her life together.

Fuuun Ishin Dai Shogun Ep. 2

“I found you, woman! Give me back my wallet!”

“What are you thinking, pointing a blade at a girl?”

“I won’t raise a hand against a woman!”

“Get lost. Next time, I’ll slap you senseless.”

Make up your mind, jackass. Oh well, Keiichiro’s words are so inspiring, it convinces the fox girl to stop selling her body to men. She then promptly lives up to her words by jumping into the air and shoving her crotch in our faces:

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A “fascinating” tidbit: “Susanoo only reveals its true power when a male virgin pilots up front, nestled in the crotch of a female virgin in back.” Ugh, I’m getting Daimidaler flashbacks.

JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure – Stardust Crusaders Ep. 3

JoJo's Bizarre Adventure - Stardust Crusaders - 0301

When Holly got a stand, I was like, “Oooh, is she going to fight alongside the burly men in her lives?” But no… no GAR for Holleh~

Kindaichi Case Files R Ep. 3

Each explanation in this episode just got crazier and crazier. The killer got Chan to force himself into the right seat because he just hates butterflies that much. That’s right, he made Shin switch seats with him, because he won’t even eat soup out of a bowl that has been decorated with a butterfly. Alright, that made me raise my eyebrows a bit, but it’s not entirely farfetched. Maybe Chan is just a lepidopterophobic.

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Hajime then explains to us how the killer managed to kill Shin in one building, then transport the corpse 100 meters through the air to another building:

Kindaichi Case Files R - 0301

Are you serious? But that’s not even the best part! I mean, how did the killer manage to sneak in a 100 meter long metal wire when security has been so strict as of late? Aha, the metal wires came in the form of a bunch of dress hangers! But y’see, these dress hangers are somehow made of a shape memory alloy! Where on earth would you find dress hangers made out of shape memory alloy is beyond me, but that’s the reality in this anime! When our hero throws the straightened wire into the bathtub, everyone stands around to watch in amazement as the wire turns right back into…

Kindaichi Case Files R - 0302

…dress hangers! They even make a shing sound to let you know the process is complete! Ah man, this is just too much. The story is trying too hard to keep the the audience on its toes, but the end result of this is just a tale that feels outright outlandish. But when Hajime goes to finger the culprit, he refers to the girl as Miyuki. Let’s face it, it’s Ran Yan. I like how this part of the mystery is so transparent, but everything else is just off-the-wall bonkers.

Mekakucity Actors Ep. 2

Mekakucity Actors - 0201

I guess this is an episode about the main character’s sister. She has some ability to focus other people’s attention onto her, which makes her an ideal idol. Unfortunately, she just wants to be normal. Then there’s something about her father disappearing at sea because he tried to save her, and how she gets bad grades or something. It’s just… who cares? Her episode just feels like a vehicle for her song. What’s the bigger picture? What is this anime even about? Some group of kids with special powers recruiting other kids with special powers to do what? Meh. Also, more ridiculous Shaft-isms all over the place.

Nobunaga the Fool Ep. 15

Nobunaga takes a trip to the Star of the West in order to save Jeanne. I gotta say… the Star of the West is a lot more interesting as a setting than the Star of the East. I mean, at least it’s a teensy bit exotic looking. But speaking of Jeanne, she undergoes both physical and mental torture at the hands of Cesare and Machiavelli respectively. These scenes are pretty whatever until the following happens:

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That’s just stupid. So anyway, the story drags out those kids Jeanne had saved a really long time ago. Naturally, they still think she’s the devil’s spawn and all that jazz. Still, when the entire village catches on fire, Jeanne does everything in her power to save the villagers’ lives, because, y’know, she’s just a boringly pure maiden with a heart of gold:

Nobunaga the Fool - 1502

Thanks to this little trick, the villagers instantly come around! They even go so far as to bar Cesare’s way, allowing Jeanne and Nobunaga to escape. Wow, that was quick! But then some shit happens and they die anyway. No, they don’t just die. They literally disintegrate before our very eyes, forcing Jeanne to break down and cry. Well, with Nobunaga acting all stoic and shit, someone has to step up to the plate and deliver the pathos, I guess. It’s just rather fucked up that Jeanne ends up being this show’s punching bag because we can’t have Nobunaga being all emotional and shit.

Nobunaga the Fool - 1503

Plus, it is really lazy writing to kill off the villagers right after Jeanne had just saved them. It renders her actions completely pointless. Oh, they’re saved–… whoops, they’re not. All in a matter of a few minutes.

Soredemo Sekai wa Utsukushii Ep. 3

I was told we’d have a cute show about a blossoming friendship between the two main characters. This ain’t cute at all:

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In fact, the kid has taken to sleeping naked in Nike’s bed every once in a while. After just a week. And it’s against her wishes too. That’s just straight up rapey, man. But as always, as long as our heroine is violent with our suddenly lecherous king, everything will be A-OK! emot-rolleye

No, really, it’s okay! He defends her later from the nasty words of some random ambassador, and this totally makes her blush. And also, he personally picks flowers for her room everyday so that she can relax at night! Finally, the kid totally works himself to the bone! So c’mon, we can overlook a few creepy actions right? Flowers totally make up for it, right? Apparently so, because although Nike initially refuses to summon the rain at her own coming-out party, she eventually relents because it would help her connect with the kid or something. Y’know, I don’t really care if the kid starts out as an asshole, but Nike eventually softens his heart. That’s just a standard way for a lot of romances to play themselves out. I just question the need for the kid to be so rapey. That’s all.

On another note, the animation is such a pity at times. Like this shot right here:

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Livius ends up looking like a troglodyte.

10 thoughts on “Everything Else, Spring ’14, Week 3: Getting the small fries out of the way

  1. Rachel

    As much as I’m enjoying The World is Still Beautiful, there are some shoujo tropes that I wish would just stop. The chief one is the, “I’m going to be forceful with you regardless of your consent, because dominance is HOT,” bit. At least the fact that he’s chibi-sized means he can’t pin Niko against any walls a la Thoth in Kamigami no Asobi, right?


    1. E Minor Post author

      It’s not like any of these characters would actually do that. It’s more that they give the impression that this sort of action would be condoned in the name of romance.

  2. Ultimatum

    I want to like Mekakucity Actors. The manga is pretty good and it has a lot of female characters with unconventional character designs for anime and great male and female characters in general.
    But SHAFT is seriously messing it up. I can understand a director or company being influenced by past works, but it feels like SHAFT has been “infected” with the Monogatari style. There, they had to overcompensate for long conversations with lots of unique set pieces and character movements, so it would be interesting to watch. Mekakucity doesn’t need that though–it comes from a visual and auditory medium, not something with long streams of puns, non-sequitors and conversations. They’re actually adding to Mekakucity what made Monogatari a challenge to adapt, and that’s ridiculous.
    They have a lot of plot to get through in 10 more episodes, and they haven’t even introduced much of the cast. They’re having conversations that last half the episode and contribute nothing to the story and barely anything to the characters. Momo’s backstory was interesting, but the conversation with the teacher was needlessly drawn out and mostly pointless. It took a page or two in the manga, if I’m remembering right. And here it was, what, eight minutes? In a twenty-minute episode? Why.
    And speaking of the teacher, was it really necessary to make him repeatedly get in Momo’s personal space? His entire scene made me simultaneously want to punch him in the face and get as far away from him as possible.
    “All style and veeeeerrry little substance” is a good way to describe the show at this point. I still have highish hopes, but SHAFT keeps SHAFTing it up.

    1. Aqua

      I actually feel 100% same…. I’ve been a fan of this series since it was actually confirmed to be a series when Konoha’s State of the World was released, and while I want to enjoy this as much as possible, oh god SHAFT, this isn’t the Monogatari series, stop trying to make it into that. I’m baffled as to how they’re going to get anywhere in the plot if they keep up with these like 10 minute long conversations which add nothing, no character development, no plot.

      I’m glad someone else found that scene really uncomfortable though, I’m not sure why they thought it would be a good idea to add a grown man physically leaning over a girl who’s like what, 15 or 16 ish like that. If they wanted to show Momo was feeling under pressure or something I’m sure there was a much less awkward way to show that.

    2. E Minor Post author

      Shaft is just a one trick pony. These days, I think fans should just cry if Shaft has been named to adapt anything.


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