This weekend was just another weekend in terms of anime watching. Yakumo from Show Genroku isn’t currently my favorite character, but boy, did Yotaro’s performance bring back emotions from that wonderful last song from Sukeroku! Fuuka had a lukewarm episode this week, despite having a major development happen from thin air. March Comes in Like a Lion finally showed us the Shimada episode it was hyping over the last few weeks. Something substantial happened in Masamune this week after the major drag out it was going through.
Speaking of major drag out, I wonder what cards are left to play in Scum’s Wish with its characters- I get it, the loli is mad (what a twist!). Interviews with Monster Girls is losing its harem stain and gets pretty funny this week. As usual, I save Blue Exorcist for last: truth be told, I won’t argue if anyone told me this arc is being dragged out quite a bit, especially in the last couple of weeks.
Descending Stories: Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju (Episode 8)
What happens in this episode: This week the cast members assemble to persuade Yakumo to return performing rakugo again. Higuchi visits Yakumo to ask permission for the distribution of the footage of Yakumo’s performances. Konatsu and Yotaro are having their special moment and Yakumo in white enters the scene. Clearly, he was trying to kill himself and then he makes an exasperated remark about how he is destined to just rot away. Konatsu brings out the emotional side of her and Yotaro tells Yakumo to just let whatever that’s itching him out of his mind through rambling. Then, Yakumo just gets dragged down into the podium of the geisha inn where respectable people await him. Yotaro relives Sukeroku’s performance and we never get to see Yakumo perform this week because who decided to arrest the fluid development of a character arc? The police.
My thoughts: This episode was a bit rough to be honest. I didn’t like the whiny senile comments Yakumo made this week. I know, he made these statements before- but the fact that these statements are repeated makes the first half of the episode a bit irksome to watch (especially when Konatsu and Yotaro were having those precious intimate moments, and Yakumo basically spooked them). But Yotaro’s heartfelt performance in the second half made up for it. His performance reminded me of great and touching Sukeroku’s final performance was in the first season. Impeccable timing on the interruptions this episode, guys.
Fuuka (Episode 9)
What happens in this episode: Yuu and Koyuki are on a (dragged out) date and they chat about boring stuff. The second half of the episode narrates the band trying to make an original song and Fuuka feeling pangs when she sees Koyuki and Yuu together.
My thoughts: I am glad and relieved that the anime didn’t bother to go through the pre-date drama that we see often after two people get together in an anime. Hell, the anime didn’t show any substantial conversation between the two before Koyuki cracked that dragged out, awkwardly executed ‘joke’. It is pretty weird that the anime is skipping and dragging out its scenes. The animation is still as bad as ever. Development-wise, it’s okay. Still frames during instrument was my haven from the hellish CG this episode.
March Comes in Like a Lion (Episode 19)
What happens in this episode: The Shimada episode is finally here! We finally know why Shimada cares so much about playing in his home town and why he is so motivated to win against Souya. Rei learns that he and Souya think about Shogi moves the same abstract way and that’s part of why Shimada wanted to play with him. Yeah, so Rei gets his answer to his question poised last episode- I guess.
My thoughts: Shimada is such a beautiful being- his character may seem like it has been chiselled out this week, but I think his personality has been making marks on his character since his match with Rei. He is unassuming (but still has quite an ego), hard working and only get selfish with himself (I don’t know how else to phrase that). This is my favorite episode from the weekend and possibly the week. This episode goes to show, again, how strong, flexible and paradoxically dedicated this anime is with its character writing.
Masamune-kun’s Revenge (Episode 8)
What happens in this episode: The anime finally remembered that Neko swiped Masamune’s photo, and Masamune starts thinking deeply about it. He calls Neko and asks her whether he can visit her. Visiting-a-girl’s-house anime drama ensues. A few minutes later, Neko pushes Masamune down on her bed after putting her lips on his. Masamune rejects her and she runs away from her home. It turns out that Neko has an anime disease.
My thoughts: Even though, things were finally happening this episode- this still wasn’t a good episode. Neko, at one moment, was a really sweet girl and then by the end of the episode- she just burned my nerves. Her running away reminds me of Marika Tachibana from Nisekoi- and I am still pretty sour on that manga’s ending (yeah, I hoped for Onodera- I should have known better). The development is pretty fleshy (haha) but tasteless.
Scum’s Wish (Episode 7)
What happens in this episode: It turns out that Noriko is another synonym of egoistic love; and Mugi just wants more sex. Great! That’s what teenagers fantasize about. Hanabi wants to be Akane and, so far, she still didn’t get a carrot (take it as you want). Speaking of getting carrots, what happened to the (annoyingly well written) Sexiest Sensei of Winter 2017 this week? (Sakie maybe a succubus, but she doesn’t have that quirky scum-appeal).
My thoughts: Noriko’s character reveal was to be expected (given this anime is about trashy people). But I didn’t expect Mugi to get cold feet in the middle of his pantsu viewing. I am sorry, I just enjoy watching this cynical anime and be cynical about it. Yeah, the character writing is good, but there is no cohesion between the episodes and I am not a fan of this approach for a drama. I mean, this approach of narrative fits March Comes in Like a Lion more than Scum’s Wish. Noriko isn’t a great monologue narrator, though- she has the same things to say. But looking on the bright side, Mugi and Hanabi will confess to their teachers soon. And on that bombshell, that’s it for Scum’s Wish this week.
Interviews with Monster Girls (Episode 8)
What happens this episode: Yukki’s taste in comedy is quirkily cute though I cannot say the same for the jokes in the manga. But Takahashi’s joke about getting hair in Hikari’s mouth was pretty funny. Macchi is apparently a good student instead of a goofster and Hikari is crestfallen.
My thoughts: I am glad there wasn’t any substantial harem-y elements in play this episode and we got decent comedy from Hikari. This week was fun and wasn’t as sympathetic of the monster girls like previous episodes.
Blue Exorcist- Kyoto Saga (Episode 8)
What happens in this episode: Apparently, Tatsuma and Karura are still alive and he suddenly becomes the unsuspicious good father to Bon. The first half of the episode comprises of dragged out exposition of the Impure King and father-son mini drama. Yukio and the Karura eater get into a fight where the Karura eater gets him with the words in the image above.
My thoughts: Wow, even the climax buildup was slow in this episode. There wasn’t any character moments that justified the dragging out this episode (well, except Bon’s realization that Tatsuma was trying to protect him). To confirm how empty this episode was, my favorite moment was when Mephisto was enjoying his popcorn (that guy breaks the fourth wall in a weird way). So, not a good episode from this anime this week.
And with that, that’s all for the 8th week of Winter 2017. To read more episodic mini reviews from this week of anime- go to Anilog# 13
Thank you for reading.