9 May 2011

Anime Weekly 9

A short post every Sunday, 9pm (I hope!) summarizing what I've watched in the past 7 days. Notable episodes this week have a (*) beside the episode number.

This week's Anime Weekly comes in late because of Mother's Day, Portal 2 and work.

Hanasaku Iroha 5
Though this arc was not bad, I'm starting to hate this format. On one hand this allows the creator to explore a variety of situations instead of concerning with strict continuity from episode to episode, but on the other hand I'm itching to see the characters develop and follow up on certain story threads (Ko-chan!). We learn a few things about Tohru and Minko, and Minko DID turn into a tsundere, but it was mostly just revelations about their character rather than actual development. After all, Minko has always been tsundere for Ohana right? Right??

Denpa Onna to Seishun no Otoko 4(*)
Too much sparkles! Denpa loses some of its charms this episode and tries a little too hard to make Erio look like some kind of angel, but she's extremely cute and pretty anyway so I'll just let that slide. The 2 classmates more or less confirms Makoto's harem status. Ryuushi is less irritating this episode and definitely more adorable (the way she denies that she's cute). Maekawa-san is weird as always, and teases Makoto like how an older sister might. On a more serious note, I like how each of the characters deal with Erio and Makoto's dangerous flight. People around him seem caring enough to question his motive for doing that, but at the same time very supportive and trustful of him as well. Hoping to see more of Erio and how the rest of the cast interact with her as she slowly re-integrates into society.

Steins;Gate 5(*)
I'm starting to get used to Okarin vs Mikase. Might even like it! Her tsundere attitude is getting more lovable! As always, the story remains tight, leaking bits of really interesting stuff each episode, including a tense moment between the part timer at the CRT TV shop and Mikase. I also love the techy little details, showing internal hard disks and Okarin buying logic chips and memory chips for the hacker guy to solder onto the IBM 5100. I don't have much to complain about this show right now, but perhaps it could go a little faster? Or maybe bring back some of that weirdness I loved in the first episode. Oh, and is Mayushii's "tu-tu-ru~!" a reference to the catchphrase Shoko-tan was trying to popularize (@3:25 onwards)?

Anohana 4(*)
A lot of crazy speculation after last week's episode, including one that, honestly, I thought was too crazy to be true. Turns out the guy who suggested that was right on the money. As awkward as that sounds (for those of you who know about it), the producers have done a remarkable job of tackling that issue. It's still awkward, but more awkward for the characters, standing there and seeing their friend in that state, than it is for us the viewers. Everyone has issues in this anime, and I can see the writer going deeper into each of their personalities and weaving a wonderful tale out of it. I wish more writers and directors can portray characters with such seriousness and realism (without too much melodrama) as what the ex-Toradora staff here have managed to do.

Ao no Exorcist 3
It's quite a pain to sit through such a cliche and poorly paced shounen series. A revelation that the weak and caring brother isn't weak and that he has hated his big brother all this while. They fight. And then they make up. While some shows might be able to pull this off well (Karekano has some quickly resolved conflicts that weren't too unnatural), Ao no Exorcist just doesn't. Yukio still feels like a cold, distant character, while Rin is just too hot-blooded. We don't get to see or understand the characters beyond their shallow stereotype, so it's hard to empathize with them or understand why they made up so fast. The dog/principal apparently didn't care much for them as well and let them fight it out. Oh well. At least we're getting Hanazawa Kana next episode!

Deadman Wonderland 3
Every week after watching Deadman Wonderland, the only thought that crosses my mind is that it dares to be violent and bloodly without going over the top (at least not to ridiculous levels). So far, that's the only thing it has going for it. Also, the rather realistic portrayal of a dystopian society is slowly going to turn into a fantasy/ science fiction hybrid. Could be good though if there are detailed explanations and epic fight scenes.

C 4
Going Public! While the fights themselves are not that visually impressive (good CG, but bad choreography), the concepts behind it are quite interesting. You can literally buy your way to victory if you have supporters to buy your stocks. We see our main character making his Initial Public Offering this episode, as well as destroying the life of someone he knows, signalling a change in how he views the system. I like how the world and the concepts behind it are being revealed, but the characters still seem flat. What about the girl he likes? What about his dad? This series has no soul.


There's no clear winner among the bottom 3 (Ao no Exorcist, Deadman Wonderland, C), as none of them have been good enough for me to give a (*) yet. I guess I'll continue to blog them for a while more.

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