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EP. REVIEW: Akudama Drive


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NeverConvex
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Joined: 08 Jun 2013
Posts: 978
PostPosted: Sat Nov 21, 2020 2:35 pm Reply with quote
So -- uh, that latest episode was something else. I lost it when spoiler[the executioners' chief revealed that "what you believe is the moon was an illusion!"] What more Akudama-esque an escalation could there be than that hilarious bit of nonsense?

Admittedly, I also was only half-paying attention, and now have absolutely no idea spoiler[how we went from "immortality is one part water, 2501 parts tortured experimental child" to "And we're going to the moon!"]. Admittedly, I am not confident I would understand that turn if I had been paying full attention, though..

EDIT: Is it just me, or does the "spoiler" button not work correctly? It always generates the leading tag, but the trailing one doesn't appear until I actually complete my post, and invariably I've got to go back and manually remove it and close tags in the correct places.
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Yuvelir



Joined: 06 Jan 2015
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 21, 2020 7:18 pm Reply with quote
Damn, that cut with Hoodlum getting hyped about the spacesuit hit like a truck.

The alchemy experiment was interesting, and visually it made me think of Inside, wonder if that's what was going on in that game.
The broken moon I didn't see coming but it does fit the cyberpunk setting - and it escalates things a lot, not only because of how big the moon is but because it implies that the scope of the Kanto-Kansai war is far far larger than that. Medic being a turnlabcoat however isn't so surprising, and it was clear as water that she was going to spell trouble as soon as she got what she wanted - not like there were many options: Swindler was busy being invested in the children, Hoodlum doesn't have the power or authority, Deliveroo only cares about work and Cutthroat isn't going to hurt Swindler or the children after last time (looks like he took that well).

Hakobiya might seem stoic and not interested, but he really does love his cheesy one-liners.
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HAL14



Joined: 01 Apr 2018
Posts: 193
Location: Heart of africa
PostPosted: Sun Nov 22, 2020 7:16 pm Reply with quote
There are some slight differences in the second half of the opening song. The scene with each character profile is now a bit different. spoiler[This might hint how and in what order they die; Brawler, for example, is lying down face-up like his death on the bridge.]
What's really interesting is that spoiler[swindler] comes before spoiler[courier]
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Tanteikingdomkey



Joined: 03 Sep 2008
Posts: 2105
PostPosted: Sun Nov 22, 2020 7:24 pm Reply with quote
anyone else told the episode is not in your territory when you live in the USA on funimation
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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
Posts: 2859
PostPosted: Sun Nov 22, 2020 7:45 pm Reply with quote
I understand the tropes of character staying behind to assure their comrade can escape, but that only work when the character can actually delay the enemies. Here brother just get immediately captured and contribute nothing, why didn't he just get on the rocket? I get the show run on rule of cool, but getting immediately captured is definitely not cool.
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Agent355



Joined: 12 Dec 2008
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Location: Crackberry in hand, thumbs at the ready...
PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2020 9:00 pm Reply with quote
I saw this tweet before watching the latest episode, and during the episode I could not stop laughing!
Quote:

@fathomlessblue
So much bad academic discourse around what hyper violence in anime says about Japan's psychological frustrations towards its youth, but not a single paper about what the f### is its issue with the moon.


https://twitter.com/fathomlessblue/status/1329512501642465281?s=21
So, question, *why* did the evil powers-that-be have to kill the 5,000+ kids they created when they didn’t even experiment on them? I might get it if they were killed during the experimentation, but they were deemed unworthy of experimentation and they didn’t bother to kill them until after the experimentation was done. What’s up with that?
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NeverConvex
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2020 10:25 pm Reply with quote
Agent355 wrote:
So, question, *why* did the evil powers-that-be have to kill the 5,000+ kids they created when they didn’t even experiment on them? I might get it if they were killed during the experimentation, but they were deemed unworthy of experimentation and they didn’t bother to kill them until after the experimentation was done. What’s up with that?


I think what I came away with was something like: it took half of them to make the brother, and the other half to make the sister, and the brother somehow didn't notice (and the narrative didn't care to convey to us) the disappearance of subjects as they were murdered, one by one, while using their body parts to make him (in fact, the re-appearance of seemingly the same few friends of his each time suggests the opposite, unless we were meant to infer that they were just all so identical to one another that he could not tell who was who). Nor to communicate how exactly that was built into him, or what it had to do with him being the (N/2+1)-th subject.

Which is to say it was poorly explained, and I did a few somersaults trying to make sense of it before not trying so hard anymore.

It was still a lovely, hilarious episode, though, in the brain-is-definitely-off sense.

EDIT: Also, no idea why the subjects were all just suddenly dropped into a vat of death water after the brother was "complete". That doesn't really fit with him being the (N/2+1)-th subject at all, and I see no particular way to explain it, other than "it looked cool / dark and they liked it."
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Yuvelir



Joined: 06 Jan 2015
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2020 2:41 am Reply with quote
It wasn't a vat of death, it was an immortality broth. They used that to create the sister. They were quite explicit with the means and words.
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Yuvelir



Joined: 06 Jan 2015
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2020 8:30 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
Plus, Swindler marks the occasion with a Character Development Haircut, and that's my favorite trope ever, so I'll forgive a lot for it.

I on the other hand despise that trope as it usually destroys a character design with no real benefit or change whatsoever. And sure enough, Swindler's pop-neon deisgn is obliterated... but at least there's very strong pragmatism behind it.

Quote:
And these guys aren't Akudama. They're just run-of-the-mill lowlifes making a living off human trafficking, seemingly unabated by the authorities.

Are you sure there's such a strong distinction? Hoodlum was already on the Akudama List and sentenced to 4 measly years for minor ¿fraud? and extortion, the kind of crimes which would affect Kanto even less than human trafficking. These guys were just smart enough to hide outside the city.
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Covnam



Joined: 31 May 2005
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2020 11:32 pm Reply with quote
spoiler[Plus, Swindler marks the occasion with a Character Development Haircut, and that's my favorite trope ever, so I'll forgive a lot for it.]

Really? Personally I hate that old trope lol
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a_Bear_in_Bearcave



Joined: 14 Jan 2019
Posts: 91
PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2020 2:22 am Reply with quote
I'll join in with the Haircut of Character Development hate, though in this case it made sense and that hasty impromptu makeover ends up ugly (better ugly than dead) is also realistic. I'll also add flash fang hate while at popular pet peeves, at least in anime - it makes sense in manga, where it's white, but flesh colored fang is horrible.
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andramus



Joined: 19 Apr 2020
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2020 3:24 am Reply with quote
I've only recently become aware of the Haircut of Character Development trope and am only personally familiar with a handful of examples. So I was wondering is there distinction between a haircut for practical reasons vs symbolic ones?

Oddly whilst Swindler's haircut was very much for practical reasons it occurred whilst she was undergoing a character metamorphosis. So the haircut was tied to her development but was not as symbolic as the other examples I am familiar with. One such example of a symbolic haircut that I recently came across was Farnese from Berserk.
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Yuvelir



Joined: 06 Jan 2015
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2020 5:32 am Reply with quote
andramus wrote:
I've only recently become aware of the Haircut of Character Development trope and am only personally familiar with a handful of examples. So I was wondering is there distinction between a haircut for practical reasons vs symbolic ones?.

If you want more examples watch Monogatari, every other character gets one.
I don't think I've seen pragmatic cuts more than twice, usually it's just symbolic... and frequently it's symbolic of the writer's inability to reflect a character's development in their characterization and personality.
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Yuvelir



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PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2020 9:34 pm Reply with quote
I used to find Cutthroat kinda cute but alas, he was too far gone and he made his endgame clear since the start. What a performance though, I won't be forgetting this anytime soon.

Shishou must have also been an elite executioner, as he pretty much defeated the guy who single handedly (literally, as he had both a bad leg and arm) killed about every other executioner.
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meiam



Joined: 23 Jun 2013
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2020 11:49 pm Reply with quote
Swindler was fun as a fish out of water character, but now that they're trying to transition her to an action lead it's just awkward, she's just not developed enough to do anything interesting.

If they really wanted her to be more of a driving force in the story, I would have much preferred if instead they made a 5 year time skip portion. During that time Swindler became some sort of mob boss, using her money and Hacker drone to create some sort of akumadan union that she's going to use to rescue brother or something like that (BTW, where did Brother get the money anyway, is that something we're supposed to to think about?).

Cause Cutthroat fight and send off was just awkward and stretched too long since they couldn't really do anything, the shining reference was funny (although its really weird that this high tech building as wooden door for bathroom), but after that it was just spinning its wheel. Courier just disappear for the entire fight because they can't explain why Swindler would be able to take out Cutthroat but not Courier. The rule of cool was seriously flaying at that point.
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