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It's not often that you see such a candid exploration of abuse in anime: it's even less often that you see someone actually have to pay penance of sorts for being a problem.
While the whole setup was pretty bland to the point where I could call out almost every single story beat that was about to happen, I'd be remiss to not say it was the third segment that got the biggest laughs out of me.
The road to Onigashima has been long, and it's important to contextualize why the battle is important through events past and present.
So I'll start the review of this week's The Detective Is Already Dead with the positive: The actual mystery-solving does, in fact, make sense this time! Kinda! If you squint!
If there's any resolution to be had here, it needs to be through the characters speaking and taking action outside the strictures of an action cartoon.
Are heroes born? Or are they made? Or are they maybe forced into it by their psychotic teacher who thinks that giant monsters attacking a theme park is an “attraction?”
After two episodes of heavy focus on the extended cast of the series, this one comes back to centering on Miyuki, giving us a different look at the relationship between her and her brother.
If the ending of the first season got you fully on-board as it did for me, this should keep working for you. The only other point of contention I could possibly bring up is that the animation is still pretty dang flat.
We all knew it had to happen sometime – one of Catarina's suitors would just get tired of waiting for her to get a clue.
One of the most fascinating elements of The Case Study of Vanitas is the way that it takes tale types, folklore, and philosophy and twists them just a little bit to create its world and mythos.
And four weeks later, we at last get to see the 'first' episode of Peach Boy Riverside!
Episode 3, “Life Begins in the Ocean,” starts with penguins, which serves as a mildly comedic callback to Fuka's less than stellar meet 'n greet last episode. While this is just table setting to the episode's overarching plot, there's a very hurt old penguin in this episode named Choko who I want to feed all the fish to. Over the course of the episode, Fuka and Kukuru continue to grow into their ...
Incendiary in its impenetrability, and pugnacious in its pretentiousness, Sonny Boy stands as this season's weird anime experiment for weird anime watchers. In other words, I'm once again in my element.
Out of all of its main ingredients, I'd say Tsukimichi's secret sauce is its cast, especially the chemistry between our hero Makoto and his dragon partner/girlfriend/maid/bodyguard/bully/slob roommate, Shen.
It feels like SOTSU is more interested in getting back to the primary confrontation after these loops. The pacing here is going at a breakneck speed but it never had to set itself up in this format in the first place.
Lucoa gets in big sister mode to help integrate Ilulu into the group which also pushes the dragon to decide to solve her own social problems instead of having Kobayashi force an easy resolution.
There are plenty of urban legends, internet rumors, and ghost stories about Disney World, so it would make sense that Walter Park would have its seamier side – and that in the Netherworld, all of those stories would turn out to be true.
If you're not familiar with my feelings about the anime's first season, here's the short version: I adore BEASTARS, even when its story threatens to become too ambitious for its own good.
Even though Girlfriend, Girlfriend's selling point revolves around the idea of Naoya being intimate with two girls at the same time, the dynamic is presented much like a typical love triangle with just a slightly different coat of paint.
Beyond the PR talk, a lot of this incredibly lengthy conversation is about the other rulers sizing up Rimuru and each other. This is important because the fates of several nations are at stake.
In the interest of structural synergy, however, feel free to read the paragraphs of this review in whatever order you prefer!
It's a beautiful mishmash of about fourteen different texts, and more than just working, it makes this weird combination look good. Welcome, in short, to the anime adaptation of The Case Study of Vanitas.
It's going to be difficult to fully balance my temperament, because this marks the first time that my enjoyment of To Your Eternity has been so hampered by its production values.
Things kick off with that mysterious sixth man from Toman's founding, Kazutora, just walking into Takemichi's class and taking our hero on a field trip to Valhalla's hideout.
SOTSU hasn't done anything particularly unexpected yet in its first four episodes except raise a few red flags. I'm cautiously awaiting episode five.
For the mainstream audience, or anyone otherwise not interested in fanservice that involves creeping on kid characters, a show like Dragon Maid can be frustrating.
Having Jukki Hanada and Takahiko Kyōgoku back to helm this new entry is in many ways a long-awaited reunion. And so far the same magic that made School Idol Project the runaway success it became is here in spades.
The real charm in watching isekai stories is seeing which tropes a work leans into and what twists it adds to the formula. How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom splits the difference, and ends up decidedly average with signs of potential.
I'll readily admit, episode 1, “Nothing Was Working,” is table-setting: fifty minutes of table-setting that during my first watch of Remake Our Life, I didn't particularly enjoy consistently
Ai feels the most real, in a very intimately painful way. Her story and the abuse committed against her feels like the story of many of the girls and young women who are devoured by the idol industry, and while her story isn't connected to her work as an idol, it is deeply connected to why Ai became an idol so willingly.
I'm hopeful that aquatope can deliver on its pleasant combo of magical realism, aquariums, soft sapphics searching for themselves, and introspective, realistic character growth.
If there's one thing Seirei Gensouki has going for it, it's the way it's handling its subgenre of isekai. This series falls under the “reborn in another world” heading, but it takes a slightly different approach than the bulk of the stories we see.
There's something funny about Battle Game in 5 Seconds, and I'm not sure if it's intentional or not.
Set during episode one and two of The irregular at magic high school's first season, this episode does something I thought impossible: make Honoka likeable.
Eustass Kid, his crew, and the Straw Hats are subjected to Kin's technique as well, and now that everyone is clothed in the leather and furs of the Beast Pirates, they can head into Onigashima incognito.
One of the recurring problems MHA has had is that, while it has a huge cast of likable and endearing characters, it's often struggled to divvy up time for them all in a way that's satisfying to their fans.
The primary issue one could take with Detective is that the actual sleuthing is handily the least interesting part of the whole show.
We may not have a victor in the competition for the heart of Catarina Claes, but at least two of these three episodes belong to Nichol Ascart.
And then Takemichi goes back in time and gets a faceful of Mikey and Draken's dicks.
This episode is more concrete proof that, even in an episode that could have been little more than a transition between story arcs, TYE is one of the most expertly written and constructed anime out there.
The Misfit Class is headed to Walter Park, the premier amusement park, and needless to say, nothing is going quite as planned.
What's always made MHA compelling to me is its ability to weave sincere character drama into its more basic shonen staples.
What ultimately frustrated me as I closed my time with this cour: there's so much still unanswered, so much still unhinted at, and too many new plot threads in this finale.
What's more surprising than Kalego having a friend? Kalego having someone who out-and-out scares him.
For what I am assured is an anime-only ending, albeit with ties to the manga to allow for a second season, Shadows House finishes on a decent note.
To its credit, Wonder Egg Priority does do a hell of a lot with its finale's runtime. Unfortunately, most of it sucks.
In fact, this finale is buoyed by its confidence, as it eschews any temptation to throw last-minute curveballs at its characters. Instead, its conclusion feels like a natural resting point.
This is another one of those episodes of To Your Eternity that is 95% climax, a thrilling and heartbreaking conclusion to the lives that have been touched and the bonds that have been forged in the latest step of Fushi's journey.
I have to give Fairy Ranmaru credit. It certainly didn't take the coward's way out.
A new crewmember is always cause for excitement and celebration. We have not had an official new member of the crew since Brook joined, which was pre-timeskip for goodness sakes.
If lame attempts at resolving years' worth of childhood trauma over the course of a single conversation aren't your bag, though, then don't worry, the show has you covered with another 10 minutes' worth of repeating old beats over again.
Last week, Takemichi finally did it. His reward? An intensely, horrifically awkward reunion with the girl who dumped him in middle school!
Clara really does have the remarkable talent for making any scene she's participating in more fun, and this episode is no exception.
TWEWY the Animation has been one hell of a ride, going from one of the season's weakest premiers to a strong, emotional finale.
Despite Odokawa's increasingly hard-boiled adventures, this world and these characters always felt bigger than this story. They extend into the past, and now, into the future.
And that brings us to the end. It's not quite all's well that ends well, but everyone is moving forward.
Given the sheer popularity of the character, I will be very shocked if this is actually the last we see of Don't Toy with Me, Miss Nagatoro in anime form. But for the time being, this is the end of our odd little journey with Nagatoro and her sufferin' Senpai.
As it turns out, Shadows House was playing with our senses in a couple of ways.
The whole season has been chiefly concerned with how men can often feel forced to express their pride and masculinity in harmful and toxic ways, and how the powers-that-be will exploit that desperation for entertainment and profit.
So yeah, with Hawks' little message, MHA's stakes have gone from dead still to dead sprint in the blink of an eye. Suffice to say Deku and The Boys won't be getting your typical work study experience.
For better or worse, it's impossible to predict what the anime will do next. I think that's for the better, though. If they truly aren't finished with the franchise, then they should go ahead and get even more bonkers.
This sort of ending is the natural conclusion of many of my favorite super robot shows, where all physical limitations are cast aside in favor of burning passion and deity-punching goodness.
After the visual tour de force of last week's entry with Luffy, Law, and Kid attacking the Beast Pirates ship, I expected we'd have something of a “breather” episode this week.
And I imagine, at the end of this series, that some of you might be wondering, “Mercedez, did Super Cub stick the landing? Do you still stand by that claim?"
It still comes off like the bare minimum of a conceptual arc for a series that spent so much time jerking us around with a pointedly un-fun gimmick.
Buckle up, because this week's episode of Odd Taxi contains some of the tensest television I've watched all season.
Regardless of whether or not the series has “earned” them, I'm still delighted each time MARS RED uses arthouse indulgences to communicate.
This week's episode is the most devastating one yet, hitting us with a one-two-three punch of emotional catharsis for each of the three core Fruits Basket couples.
How much cheesiness is too much? That seems to be a balance that the final episode of The Saint's Magic Power is Omnipotent is trying to find, and it sort of wobbles back and forth on the issue.
Okay. Now that I've finished my post-To Your Eternity routine of frantically pacing my office and screaming, “My boy! My precious lizard-faced boy!” for ten minutes without interruption, I think I might be ready to tackle this review.
There is some short-lived tension over whether Draken will actually die, and it leads to probably my favorite scene when Mikey does the classic shonen leader speech – only to sneak off once Draken does pull through to quietly.
I maintain that Higehiro has done a pretty good job of telling an emotionally resonant story about believably damaged and likeable people, but in recent weeks the show just hasn't had the visual chops or the storytelling skill to handle high melodrama.
Episode 23 is mostly spent on Shun's side of the story, and the production is noticably struggling. This isn't the first time the animation has looked wonky, but it's much more jarring this episode.
With the series' final bout just ahead of us, and Joe's personal and relationship conflicts about as resolved as they're ever likely to be, there was really only one final thing left for Megalobox 2 to address: Mac.
When it opens with Sumire Uesaka voicing Nagatoro doing her best mocking impression of Nana Mizuki's pretentious President, that's enough for me to know I'm in for a good time.
Episode 11 slaps. It's the perfect second-to-last episode before next week's finale. This is what I dreamed of the show being: plotty, impactful, emotional, and engaging.
All in all, Combatants Will Be Dispatched! has had its ups and downs as a series. However, it has remained consistently entertaining throughout. Its irreverent shock humor has been a lot of fun and some of the jokes had me laughing uncontrollably.
We have arrived, then, at the final problem. Canonically, this is the story that originally introduced Moriarty, both as the Lord of Crime and in general, so it may not be overstating to say that this is the end goal of the entire series.
Two weeks ago, Episode 9 ended with our beloved cast of characters marching off into the unknown. Since then, it's been a series of constant surprises; I had absolutely no idea where they're going or what's going to happen.
All in all, this episode was shaping up to be a pretty solid ending to the series... well, until the moment it suddenly wasn't.
You've got to love that John's first instinct is always to punch something. His crate, the boulder, and now a brainwashed Shaun are all the recipients of John's Mighty Fist of Justice.
I get it now – I understand why manga readers have been so excited for Balam-sensei's arrival in the anime: he is absolutely adorable.
Twas the night before Christmas
And all through UA
Not a creature was stirring
Save for Mineta, in his cage
And all through UA
Not a creature was stirring
Save for Mineta, in his cage
Those Snow White Notes' finale is something that's crueler than just about any season-ending cliffhanger in recent memory, and I'm still not entirely sure how to feel about it.
Saga sinks! Kind of! After a shockingly seafaring introduction, the girls of Franchouchou find themselves and the rest of Saga mired in the wake of the freak overnight typhoon.
Going into SSSS.Dynazenon, my initial question was whether it would "live up" to SSSS.Gridman. But that's inapplicable to the series, because it's clear that it's not a sequel or a spiritual follow-up, but a companion to it.
The Bottom-tier Character Tomozaki anime is back with a half-length OVA episode. This one focuses on the soft-spoken and angelic Kikuchi, who despite her valuable supporting role spent most of the anime's runtime in the sidelines.
With that, we've reached the end of Joran: The Princess of Snow and Blood, and the end of Sawa's journey of…revenge? I guess we can call it that.
It's “long game” storytelling at its finest, and that is something that takes a great amount of skill and confidence to pull off.
I can absolutely empathize with Sayu not wanting to go back to the place where she lost her friend, and lost her own sense of self-worth on top of it all. In that way, it's really an unambiguously good thing that Yoshida is there with her.
Given that I'm clearly not in the audience that finds these odd sidebars all that funny, it really undercuts any strides I feel the series has made when it's taking up my time with violently repetitive poop jokes.
I'll be frank: I think this episode will probably divide fans. I won't say how exactly, but I can imagine that folks will leave this episode feeling some emotions.
Leopold may be several times larger than Albert, but if he knows what's good for him, he'll stop going after Sei.
Can you hear the sound of the engine? That's right, it's Odd Taxi, pulling up with another episode, dropping off big answers, and keeping some bigger questions still locked in its trunk.
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