Casual Friday: Darwin’s Game Ep. 4 and Kabukicho Sherlock Ep. 15

Yeah, I’m still watching that show about super nerds being in love. It’s exactly what I expected it to be: a few cheap laughs that would’ve been better paced in a short form anime. Full length episodes are just way too long for a series that doesn’t have a real narrative. Alright, let’s get to the rest of the post.

Darwin’s Game Ep. 4

— The first half of the episode alternates between The Florist talking to himself and Rein spewing forth odds and percentages in her dry, monotone voice. It is amazingly boring.

— How is a 13 year old girl gunning down grown men? Well, y’see, anime in general just loves the concept of Laplace’s demon. Just look at the “Depictions in popular culture” section on this Wikipedia page. Half of the list is either an anime or tangentially related to anime. Basically, Rein can predict with quite certainty what will happen next as long as she has enough relevant information of her surroundings and the situation at hand.

— As for Kaname, he’s the same as every other try-hard anime protagonist. His calling card is his never-give-up attitude — his inexhaustible determination. In the second half of the episode, he finally reaches The Florist, but he is thrown off by his foe’s ability to construct bulletproof armor out of plant matter. But when it looks as though all is lost, Kaname somehow finds himself in a conversation with… uh, a blacksmith that looks a whole lot like a grown-up version of himself? This blacksmith conveniently gives our hero the exact info that he needs to prevail over The Florist. What’s even better is that this entire conversation takes up practically no actual time at all in the real world.

— What’s the key to victory? BIGGER, STRONGER GUNS.

— In the end, nobody dies. I forgot that our hero is like some shitty Batman who will never hurt a soul. And that’s about it.

— This episode was like eating well done steak. It was so dry and tough that I now understand why some people eat their steaks with ketchup. But what is this anime’s ketchup? I wish I knew.

Kabukicho Sherlock Ep. 15

We get another throwaway episode. Lucy tells Mary that she has a partner that she might want to introduce to her lil’ sis one day. So when Mary spots someone who looks like their father in a catalog for an mid-level marketing scam — yeah, the plot’s kind of convoluted — she enlists John’s help in infiltrating the organization. Why? ‘Cause if Lucy is gonna get married, they both might want their estranged father to be present? I dunno, that seems a little too sentimental to me. The girls have had to survive on their own since they were kids. If I were them, I’d harbor no love for this deadbeat father (if he’s even still alive). Then again, people don’t generally think like me and that’s a good thing.

In the end, it turns out that the MLM scam was actually a front for some psycho’s sick desire to poison the entire city. His followers love him like a cult leader. These developments feel like they’re coming from out of left field because we only have a single episode to tell the story. Like I said, the plot is all over the place. In fact, I’d argue that it’s pretty irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. The whole thing just feels like an excuse to pair John and Mary up for an episode. If you’re not familiar with Sherlock Holmes — and I mean the actual Sherlock Holmes — Mary Morstan was John Watson’s first wife, so I guess the anime has to acknowledge that relationship if only for a little bit. I say “a little bit” ’cause I don’t expect these two to actually end up together by the end of the series.

In general, the show seems deeply cynical towards romantic relationships. What do I mean by this? Well, as it turns out, Lucy’s partner isn’t quite what Mary expected. Plus, this whole MLM mess only came about because Dilan thought he had a fiancee (she was really a con artist slash cultist). Christ, how many times are they gonna keep joking about how he slept with a biological male? Meanwhile, Fuyuto continues to reel from the aftermath of his shattered love life. Last but not least, we still don’t really understand the history between Sherlock and Irene, but I doubt we’ll ever get a happy ending there. So yeah, love doesn’t fare too well in this series. I thus don’t expect much from John and Mary. I’ll be happy to be wrong, but this episode is probably as good as it’s gonna get.

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