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This Week in Anime - Is Granbelm Worth Watching?




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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
Posts: 2442
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 1:45 pm Reply with quote
Mangetsu decision is interesting, it's nice to have a character actively decide to participate in something rather being forced into it and whine endlessly about it. The problem is that this seriously clash with Shingetsu motivation.

For Mangetsu decision to carry weight, it has to be possible for her to quit the fight. But if it's possible for her to quit, then it means it's possible for Shingetsu to quit. This massively clash with her backstory, since if she think being in the battle royal is such a crappy thing, why doesn't she just quit? Maybe if she had a really important wish ("XX died and I need to bring them back to life" or something) but her wish is to cancel the battle royal... the battle royal where participation is optional, anyone can quit whenever they want and doesn't results in negative consequence for the loser/quitter...

To me that's kinda like someone who had a bad experience playing football, so they decide they'll become the best football player in the world so that they could use the money they'd win to outlaw football forever. That could work if someone (Mangetsu) pointed out how non nonsensical her plan was and she was presented as some insane person who lost all touch with reason (like Anna), but if anything she's presented as being a reasonable person...
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lossthief



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 586
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 1:54 pm Reply with quote
meiam wrote:
but her wish is to cancel the battle royal... the battle royal where participation is optional, anyone can quit whenever they want and doesn't results in negative consequence for the loser/quitter...


Her goal isn't to cancel the Granbelm, it's to remove magic from the world entirely, to prevent the constant infighting and scheming and bloodline obsession that mag families (especially hers) are tangled up in to use your analogy, it's less like Shingetsu isn't trying to outlaw football. She's trying to dissolve the NCAA and NFL.
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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:17 pm Reply with quote
lossthief wrote:
meiam wrote:
but her wish is to cancel the battle royal... the battle royal where participation is optional, anyone can quit whenever they want and doesn't results in negative consequence for the loser/quitter...


Her goal isn't to cancel the Granbelm, it's to remove magic from the world entirely, to prevent the constant infighting and scheming and bloodline obsession that mag families (especially hers) are tangled up in to use your analogy, it's less like Shingetsu isn't trying to outlaw football. She's trying to dissolve the NCAA and NFL.


If that's how she see it, boy is she going to have quite a shock when she take any history class and find out people shed blood and scheme over non magic related things! Although its kinda strange that japans kid don't learn any history until there older than the character age in the show. Rolling Eyes
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kotomikun



Joined: 06 May 2013
Posts: 684
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:56 pm Reply with quote
The only thing I don't like about this show is that it's forcing me to confront the possibility that a battle royale story can be good. Partly because, so far at least, getting robot-smashed off the island doesn't kill you, which makes it feel less schlocky. Preview for episode 6 straight-up tells us that spoiler["losing" Granbelm may not be such a bad thing, adding to the subversiveness.] Not the strongest first episode I've seen, but it improves significantly each week, which is always a good sign.

meiam wrote:
If that's how she see it, boy is she going to have quite a shock when she take any history class and find out people shed blood and scheme over non magic related things!

Using your analogy, people get concussions for reasons other than (American) football, but its popularity does lead to kids getting brain damage or even dying far more frequently than they would playing other sports, so that would be a valid reason to oppose the NFL. Also, episode 5 indicates that spoiler[(perhaps not surprisingly) there's some sort of Eva-esque apocalyptic and/or mind-warping hazard in Granbelm] which may be the real reason Shingetsu wants to end it for good.
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Doodleboy



Joined: 23 Dec 2013
Posts: 244
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 5:14 pm Reply with quote
Haven't seen the latest episode yet so it may turn into a nothing-fart. But I did like Nene's declaration in the last episode both as part of her character arc and a strategic decision.

Her Armanox is long-range because she operates by hiding herself, so she's hoping by changing herself and changing her tactics, she may get her armanox to change into a battle-form that has more then a 0.1% chance or whatever of winning according to the Granblem rules.

In terms of using magic mechanics to tie into her character arc it's a smart choice from the writers I think.
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TanyaTheEvil



Joined: 11 May 2018
Posts: 108
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 5:46 pm Reply with quote
I am absolutey loving the anime so far
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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
Posts: 2442
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 6:39 pm Reply with quote
kotomikun wrote:
Using your analogy, people get concussions for reasons other than (American) football, but its popularity does lead to kids getting brain damage or even dying far more frequently than they would playing other sports, so that would be a valid reason to oppose the NFL.


That would be perfectly reasonable if people were forced to play football for some reason, or if it was impossible to play football without getting concussion. But neither of these things are true (and the same can be said for the shows tournament).

Shingetsu is taking the decision for the future participant that they are better off not being in the tournament. This is a decision that they could have taken for themselves, but she's removing the option, she's not giving them new option, only forcing them to take a specific one. By her logic, if Mangetsu grabbed her magic stone and shattered it, she would be thankful to her for that.
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TexZero



Joined: 25 Oct 2017
Posts: 273
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 7:30 pm Reply with quote
Madoka Mecha has been enjoyable so far.
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VerQuality
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Joined: 01 Oct 2016
Posts: 62
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 8:49 pm Reply with quote
One of the things that really jumped out at me with this series is that the overall aesthetic presentation is really good. The backgrounds are gorgeous, the characters are expressive, and the sound direction is unusually strong (especially in the battle in the first episode, there were several sound effects I don't think I've ever heard in anime, and they all lend a sense of weight and impact to the SD mecha).
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Chrono1000



Joined: 05 Oct 2013
Posts: 1232
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:35 pm Reply with quote
I think Granbelm is a fascinating show since it is a late night magical girl show that is using the aesthetic, character drama, and world view of a magical girl show. Of course the production studio might have taken that too far since a lot of viewers likely dropped the show in the first episode because of the chibi mecha. The aesthetic of a magical girl show is good when you are selling cute plastic toys to children but the majority of adults are going to expect more realistic mecha designs from a late night anime. After several episodes I got used to the chibi mecha designs, the mecha fights are nicely animated, and I am curious to see if the story stays optimistic.
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kotomikun



Joined: 06 May 2013
Posts: 684
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:01 pm Reply with quote
meiam wrote:
That would be perfectly reasonable if people were forced to play football for some reason, or if it was impossible to play football without getting concussion. But neither of these things are true (and the same can be said for the shows tournament).


People aren't forced to play football, no, but its immense popularity means a lot of people are drawn to it for the potential prestige of becoming a top player. Not to mention the money. Which is pretty similar to this whole magic tournament thing--if there was a secret ritual where you duke it out with several other teenage magic-knights to become the ultimate grand witch, you'd have a hell of a time trying to convince everyone to sit it out, even if it was dangerous (and so far the dangers are only implied).

So, winning and ending it forever does seem like the only way to accomplish, well, that. We don't know yet whether that's the right thing to do, because Shingetsu is almost certainly not telling the whole truth about her motivations, and she's only the secondary protagonist anyway. Wouldn't be a good story if it told us everything right from the start.
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TarsTarkas



Joined: 20 Dec 2007
Posts: 4068
Location: Virginia, United States
PostPosted: Mon Aug 05, 2019 12:26 pm Reply with quote
Going to have to make time to watch this show, it sounds real good. Thanks for covering it.

As to sport related dangers, most jobs all have risks of some sort inherent in them.

Falling off ladders, electrocution, exposure to asbestos and fiberglass, exposure to dangerous insects and dried animal feces. Those are some of the immediate dangers that I can think of for my job. Some of my work entails working in sub-floors and above suspended ceilings, lots of interesting stuff there. Lead dust rising from underneath the raised floors and various particulates slowly drifting down from the suspended ceiling.

The dangers of boxing and other hard contact sports are well known now. It is a risk you willingly take for the chance of reaching those top tier positions for the prestige and wealth they might bring you. My job is not going to give me wealth or prestige, but when my hands are in a energized rectifier panel the chance of being electrocuted to death is there if I make one little 'human' mistake, fumble, or get distracted. So I don't feel 'extra' sorry for athletes, they are in the same boat as I am, and many others in different job fields. I wonder how many food service workers are injured a year in frying oil accidents.
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Kitsu Kyouno



Joined: 22 Dec 2018
Posts: 86
PostPosted: Tue Aug 06, 2019 12:15 pm Reply with quote
It was also nice that the whole episode was spent on the battle itself. but got a bit weird in the later going. The same things are crippling it as before; that Mangetsu is a bit of a goober, it loves to talk your ear off with mostly nonsense, and it's doing a poor job with the stakes of the battle royale, but it might have made some headway on at least the Mangetsu front by having her go berserk bonkers. Why precisely, not terribly clear as all the groundwork for her has, again, been that she's a big ol' goober. In your more typical magical girl battle royale where everyone's more intrinsically damaged, it works a lot better, and perhaps that was the first step in showing that Mangetsu somehow is. Or maybe she was feeding off of Nene's psychic waves of her mother being mindwiped and sent to live on the farm with another family. It's not hugely clear, which I'm mostly okay with since I also don't want them to sit down and spend half an episode explaining it to me either.

It was certainly worlds better than Fire Force's episode.
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