Anilog #20: 11th Week of Winter 2017 (Part 2)

Late again… here are the one-sentence summaries of this batch of anime episodes:

Masamune’s Revenge went through some nicely narrated drama with no weight on characters (typical). Scum’s Wish had Akane host the game without Hanabi; and currently, she still has yet to lose either Mugi or Big Bro- even after revealing that she is a dirty promiscuous-person, giving Hanabi the Herculean task of snatching either of them away in two episodes. Fuuka is… I don’t know what it even is anymore- is it a story? is it a piece of musical promotion of the voice actors?

Interviews with Monster Girls gave us some Takahashi-time (no that doesn’t sound wrong) where thinks about whether he favors monster girls over regular humans (nope, it still doesn’t sound wrong). Seriously, though, this was a good episode where the anime showed that the demi-chans had Takahashi’s back. Blue Exorcist ended the arc, finally, with some rushed and lazily choreographed fight sequences.

March Comes in Like a Lion put out a neatly written season finale highlighting Rei’s change in his mindset. (Time to write up a review for this endearing anime; I can’t wait for season 2)

But Showa Genroku Rakugo had a beautiful and another warm episode following events in Yakumo’s afterlife: it was enthralling and poetic.

Masamune-kun’s Revenge (Episode 11)

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It is the day of the play and the series has reached its climax this episode by having a nicely paced drama. An awkward double cross game occurs with the Masamunes being abducted and hidden left and right. But Adagaki stands up for herself and claims that she will act her part without any Masamune: yeah you do you, girl.

Frankly, this was a relatively enjoyable episode to me. The whole wacky drama was simple and was neatly narrated. Still, I couldn’t care less about what happens in the finale- this is just another painfully mediocre anime which is better consumed as another average manga.

Scum’s Wish (Episode 10)

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After episodes of absence, Akane comes back in full bloom with an (erotic) ASMR session with Mugi. And Hanabi doesn’t make an appearance- this episode was all about Akane and Mugi. Also, Big Bro is more freaky than I thought he would be (even Akane pointed it out): no, the anime is doing a good job making him the saint among the devils.

Yeah, I get it, Akane isn’t pure evil- she is just another selfish child who wants every toy (men) in the world- but she is. I am glad that the anime pointed out that Akane is the instigator to the (probable) climax of this drama. As always, I am intrigued in what is to come.

Fuuka (Episode 11)

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‘Oh no! We just have a couple of episodes left to wrap up the show!’                                                                                              — Staff of Fuuka, 2017 (Yeah, I made it up,and I am repeating what I said last week)

Koyuki is thrown off the triangle in the span of seconds (from lying on top of Yuu and straight to just tears gushing out of her eyes, ‘I knew you didn’t love me, Yuu!’). It is pretty laughable that despite the evident rush this episode had, it still had time to weigh down the heavy fan service that disappeared after the first quarter of its run. I can only shake my head at this train wreck. Worst anime on my watch list.

Interviews with Monster Girls (Episode 11)

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I liked this episode because the anime has finally shifted its focus from the iyashikei stuff and addressed the relatively serious side of things… Takahashi’s side (the vice-principal accuses him of trying to hard to help the monster girls and in consequence ignore the humans). And the timing of this couldn’t be better: it is the last two episodes and this is a good episode that consolidated the relationship between him and the demi-chans and their feeling of gratitude towards him. It was touching and now the anime seems ready for a neat finale.

Blue Exorcist: Kyoto Saga (Episode 11)

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So the arc has rushed to an end: Kamiki finally got out of the white sporangia after 3 episodes and gets charmed by Shiemi (who wouldn’t?), Rin finally cut down a glaringly bad plot device and Yukio… well, Yukio knows what he’s been through. Suguro is just tired and Mephisto had his ‘monster’ boner on for the first half and then he disappeared with it at the end (I honestly did think the anime was going to drag out the ‘Rin:man or monster?’ dilemma for another episode). Yeah, just one more episode to go through.

March Comes in Like a Lion (Episode 22- Season Finale)

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So, the first season of this wonderfully written and directed coming-of-age anime has ended. Predictably, this episode was all about Rei Kiriyama and how he is trying to change, or rather, move towards where the light is. He is back in school and looks back on the times he was lonely in elementary school. He tries to think of ways to enter a social group in his school but he shies away- too awkward to handle. Takahashi, his former teacher, makes him establish a shogi club with the After-School Burners Club. Rei convinces himself that he hasn’t changed through the Lion Cup but his way of thinking has changed- he is now looking forward, he is looking forward to where the light is shining from and that he is not alone: he has shogi and the people who play shogi with him along him in his journey.

This was a really neatly narrated season finale showing Rei’s transformation in his mindset from being lonely, depressed, pessimistic to a lonely, trying, relatively-more-optimistic.

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Goodbye, Rei… for the time being. I look forward to see you again in Fall 2017.

Descending Stories: Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju (Episode 11)

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It is official. Yakumo is dead; and what a way to transition from there to here! Sukeroku isn’t the dooming shinigami I thought he would be; rather, he is the kind-hearted Shin-chan we all know. He guides Yakumo through Yoshiwara to meet up with Miyokichi- who has transformed into a patient and warm lady instead of the dangerously infatuated seductress from the first season (though she did express some of those qualities in light-hearted mannerisms in this episode). The three reunite and enter an inn where Sukeroku and Yakumo perform their (probably) last rakugo stories.

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This is an enchanting episode. It all seemed surreal at first, but it all was made meaningful through the dialogue. This episode had the most color and pleasant use of lighting from all the previous episode- it made after life look like such a warm place. What a poetic way to draw the curtains of someone’s life. Matsuda is truly an unsung star from this anime- he is just a bubble of sunshine underneath all the dramatic and narrative layers.

I look forward to the finale of this beautiful anime about a beautiful painting, painted by a jest with a big heart and a lover with a big heart and their descendants.

I would like to end this Anilog with the final scene from this episode.

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Thank you for reading

One thought on “Anilog #20: 11th Week of Winter 2017 (Part 2)

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