This Week in Anime
Worst Pun Contest

by Nicholas Dupree and Michelle Liu,

Previous Weeks in Anime
Week 1 - Week 2 - Week 3

Nicholas Dupree got into anime in high school, and manga even earlier. From One Piece to The Promised Neverland, he's the man to talk to if it's Shonen and it Jumps. He counts Den-noh Coil and Serial Experiments Lain as his all-time favorites.

Michelle Liu got into anime in middle school through Bludgeoning Angel Dokuro-chan and somehow liked it enough to stick around. When she's not loudly proclaiming her love of Sayo Yamamoto, she talks about figure skating and strange children's shows.


Episode 31

Episode 19

Episode 5

Episode 5

BONUS DISCUSSION

Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul - The Royal Tutor - Grimoire of Zero

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the participants in this chatlog are not the views of Anime News Network.


Nick D
Micchy I have a very important question for you

Micchy
This better not be a bad meme, but hit me

Have you seen the Kase-san MV that came out this week?

I haven't yet! Been meaning to, since I love that manga lots.

YOU HAVE TO SEE IT ASAP

It's the cutest god damn thing ever.

Girls holding hands???


ME AF

So what's the dealio with this? TV anime or...?

The animation team basically made it as a video to accompany the song, with the hopes that they could also leverage it to get a full adaptation produced. So it's basically fishing for interest/trying to gauge if there's an audience for the series.

If it does end up happening I will p much flip my shit. As much as I like the trashy yuri, I also love cute girlfriends, gimme the adorable girls holding hands.

The video's great but also feels like the meanest tease too. GIVE US A FULL SHOW YOU MONSTERS.

Do you think it'll happen if I sell my soul a 33rd time?

It couldn't hurt.

Then I'd better get on that.

Speaking of cute girlfriends though, how about that Attack on Titan?

Oh right, Titan. Nothing big happened this week, really.

I mean, half of the OTP was unconscious through the whole thing so yeah, nothing happened. No colossal revelations or anything!

That's not the worst pun I've heard this week, but it's close.

TBH it almost feels like going against the spirit of the series to talk about this reveal in anything besides a casual aside. "Oh yeah, two members of the longtime cast just turned out to be the biggest villains in the series. NBD"

Of all the ways AoT could've gone about revealing that bit, that was perhaps the ballsiest. It's like that in the manga as well, just a bit of background text. You almost don't realize it when Reiner straight up says it.

I did the biggest doubletake when that line dropped in between "hey let's get something to eat" and "I need a shower".

Reiner's not in the greatest of places to spill the beans like that, huh

Reiner seems to be having a very, very deep breakdown after all this. Everybody in this show needs a really good nap.

Eren especially. Poor dude's had 4 of his friends turn out to be Titans in the span of like, half a day.

Eren is a good boy who deserves fewer emotional revelations than are forced on him.

Oh yeah, this is only hours after the Female Titan attack. I almost forgot that. Geez, rough day. Someone get Bertholdt a fresh pair of pants too, I think he might need 'em.

No wonder he just sort of tries to put it off. I'd be asking if we could get a raincheck on this revelation for like, next weekend myself.

That scene was so good though! There were a bunch of shots of Reiner's reflection in the puddle, like we weren't seeing the real him at any given time. Thought that was real neat.

The entire back half of the episode's fantastic. S2 has been phenomenal with building tension in ways S1 struggled with a lot.

Everything from the reveal to their respective transformations reeks of dread/paranoia on top of the shock/horror AoT's typically gone for in the past. Bertholdt's OH SHIT ARE WE REALLY DOING THIS face sells the scene for me, tbh.

"Reiner, what."

"Why."

"We talked about this."

Reveal aside, this raises a lot of questions as to just what Reiner and co have been doing undercover this whole time. Like, we know they tried to destroy Wall Rose in season 1, but why go into the Corps cadets just for that? And why are they trying to kidnap Eren specifically if there are other people capable of turning into Titans already? What even is their "hometown"?

All good questions! Some of which will be answered soon, iirc.

I've gathered the manga is not exactly generous with doling out answers, but I hope we do get at least a couple before the end of the season. It'd be some serious blue balls to just give us MORE questions after 4 years of waiting. I've already given up hope of ever reaching the basement.

Spoiler: they won't get there this season. Eventually, but not soon.

That basement better have something real cool to make this wait worth it.

And not just like, Eren's Dad's collection of model trains or some shit.

Sounds familiar...


inb4 it's his collection of AKB48's entire discography

Anyway, lotsa questions being raised! Meanwhile, I'm gonna be over here worrying over my son Reiner, he ain't doin so hot lately.

Well he's fighting Eren next week so I predict he'll have an easy time.

Eren's not that- okay yeah, he totally does get his ass handed to him on a regular basis

He's strong in spirit at least ="D

Speaking of good boys who deserve better, how 'bout that My Hero Academia?

Still standing by that "Endeavor's a hot dad" thing?

I stand by what I said. He may be a terrible person but he's still a fine piece of dad.

So this week we get insight into Todoroki's motivations finally, and yep, Endeavor sure is awful!

He's a literal walking dumpster fire.

Like, you don't get much more shitty than calling your son "that." Even Gendo called Shinji a child.

Dear parents: you're not supposed to project your ambitions on your kids, it just ain't right

Take notes Bakugo

Unfortunately that's all too common a form of child abuse irl

Yeah. Back when this was first revealed in the manga I knew a looooot of folks who it hit close to home for.

So, question: when Todoroki says he remembers his mom always crying, is the implication that she was abused? Your thoughts on that?

It's certainly possible - series doesn't really go into detail about the particulars of Todoroki's home life, buuuuut there's the argument that since she was forced into the marriage, his mom was being abused in some fashion from the word Go.

That'd be some real heavy shit, even though they don't show the details. Enough tact not to traumatize the kids too much, I guess. (me. I mean me.)

The extra sad part is that she in turn took it out on Todoroki. Twist: the Zuko scar is a product of daddy issues by proxy

Yeah, that's the real kicker. Todoroki didn't even get his scar from his dad - he got it from the parent who WASN'T trying to use him as a tool. Who do you even turn to after that?

I wanna give the kid a hug. He really deserves it after all that shit.

Maybe he and Deku can just have a hug battle in the tournament instead.

YES I WOULD MUCH APPRECIATE THAT

There was another scene that stuck out to me - the conversation between All Might and Endeavor

Ah right, when All Might goes to literally the worst person possible to ask for child-rearing advice.

It goes to show he cares, I think. That's where his priorities are, he wants to raise the young generation for them, not for himself. Endeavor, on the other hand... :'D

What I find interesting is that while Endeavor's clearly the source of Todoroki's issues, there's an intriguing parallel to draw between him and Bakugo.

How so?

Endeavor wants to be THE BEST and is willing to do anything, regardless of morality to do it. He wants the notoriety and status of being the top Hero but has totally abandoned any semblance of heroism. Bakugo's not THAT far gone yet - but the potential's there.

Yeah, I see what you mean there

Makes me wonder what's going on in his head when he overhears all of that.

Ah yeah, Bakugo, lurking in the shadow.


You've got Deku in the light, Todoroki sorta half in the shadow, and then Bakugo completely in shadow. I worry for Bakugo :'D

I'm sure he'll be fine, unless he loses to somebody you'd never expect him to.

Like say, Uraraka

But what are the odds of that happening.

Seven. The odds are seven.

But yeah, now we're officially into the Tournament part of the Tournament arc. After 6 episodes.

Took 'em long enough. I still got a kick out of the recreational activities detour this episode, though. I just about died when Mineta got stuck looking for back fat in the scavenger hunt.

What does that even MEAN.

I think it means we need to toss Mineta into a vat of pig offal

I second this motion

which I'm sure the girls would be happy to do

As sleazy as it was to bamboozle the girls into wearing skimpy outfits, can I just say I love the American cheerleader designs?


Blond hair, freckles, and most importantly those huge noses.
I laughed? I'm sorry, I'm a terrible person :'D

They just need cowboy hats

Burgers. They also need burgers to hit peak American

But yeah, I'm kinda sad they left that joke with the cheerleading outfits in. It's probably my least favorite gag from the whole manga

Yyyyyyyeeeeeah it's creepy as all hell. I'm perfectly happy to call Mineta and Blondie skeevy turds but not when the show indulges them like this.

Horikoshi's straight up said Mineta exists as an outlet for his occasionally pervy sense of humor, but here it just goes too far.

Which is a shame considering how most of the time MHA's really good about not being gross. Ochaco is plenty cute even without the titty shots! Please stop!

I mean if we're gonna objectify the female cast, it's not like there aren't plenty of grown ass ladies in spandex around. There's just something kinda icky-feeling about the kids being perved on.

Thirsting for the dominatrix with the whip: cool, you do you

Thirsting for the kids: Now Chotto Just A Fuckin Minute

Anyway yeah, that's an unfortunate blemish on an otherwise really fun episode. Next we get Deku vs. kid who clearly never sleeps.

I can't wait. Starting here the series hits a really good stride, and I'm already anticipating what the anime's gonna do with all the fights.

Knowing the talent behind it I'm really psyched to see how they're animated. They gon look good~

On the topic of waiting for next week: did Re:CREATORS even have an episode this week or what

I'm sorry, what, I can't hear you over the sound of my heart doki-doking for Selesia

Selesia was really willing to take one for the team huh

She's a real trooper, I'll say

Rui might look like a Hisashi Hirai character but he's more like a Macross protagonist at heart

"mostly shy kid who gets riled up under the right circumstances" is a good character archetype imo

I hesitate to call him a "good boy" but he does play well off the rest of the cast

good boy, lovable shitstain, what's the diff?

the trash child aside, I kinda feel like this episode needed to be about half as long as it was, TBH

It did feel a touch padded, I agree. Probably spent too much time in a conference room going over mostly stuff we already knew. We get the JSDF taking them into custody and yup, turns out MUP and co. are wrecking lotsa shit. That said, there was a lovely exchange between Meteora and bureaucrat Kikuchihara, where the lady's like "I feel bad for not taking you seriously enough" and Meteora's like "nah, we're talking now and that's what matters".

It is nice to have cooperative, competent authorities in a story like this for once. There are few things that drag a story down like having bumbling government suits getting in the way just to add conflict.

They're more than suits, they're lovers of stories just like the rest of us and I think that's great

I did like the quick mention that they've just gone ahead and confirmed all the creations are entitled to human and civil rights. None of this navel gazing "what IS a human?" stuff - they're here, they're sentient, they're people. I just do wish it could have played out differently than Meteora explaining everything to everyone for like the 4th episode in a row. I know that's literally what she was created to do but...

Yyyyyyyeah. I do appreciate her terrible sense of humor, at least.


Bad puns, a woman after my own heart

THAT was the worst pun I heard this week for the record

Honestly as much as this episode dragged I still enjoyed it plenty for the little character moments. Things like Marine asking the girls to stay over and the three of them cheering about beer, which is relatable af

Don't get me wrong, there is plenty of charm to be had. I just feel like we need a more driving, urgent conflict now that we've established the major cast members.

The end of the episode seems to be getting to that. So it turns out oops, Sota has seen MUP before - she's the main character in a story written by the girl who jumped in front of a train in episode 1.


Talk about Death of the Author!

Still not as bad as Meteora's joke but you're getting there.

But yeah, it's really interesting that Sota not only knew MUP's creator but seems to have been uh, "close" to her. Like you don't let just any girl take off your glasses and try them on.

Could it have been his callous "don't ask me" response that pushed her over the edge? Seems possible.

Hard to say. I'm glad Sota's finally got an established reason to be part of this whole thing though. Since episode 1 he's been kind of a hanger on, and giving him a personal stake in the matter's a good move.

He says in episode 1 that "she" is the main character, he just the narrator. But yeah, now he's got a reason to be there. I'm hoping we get more insight into his character and relationship with Shimazaki, who I'm assuming is the "Setsuna" person MUP mentioned a few episodes ago.

Yeah, I think that's gonna be really important to how I feel about the show - suicide plot points are pretty common but rarely pulled off with much grace. The series has shown a lot of tact and thoughtfulness so I'm at least semi-hopeful it'll handle it well.

We'll see, I guess. I suppose if it fails at that we still have psychotic schoolgirl to look forward to.

WHERE IS SHE

WHO IS SHE

LET ME LOVE HER, SHOW

Nick, you have the most predictable taste

I can't help it if I have a sixth sense for Best Girls

So, as the self-proclaimed Best Girl expert, how would you rate wolf :T

Oh right

Y'know if my patience for Re:CREATORS is running thin, my patience for Suka Suka is hooked up to a feeding tube in the ICU right now.

SukaSuka continues to be the most bizarrely directed thing I'm watching this season. And yes, I'm including Love Rice in that metric.

Usually with this type of show my favorite episodes are the silly side stories that flesh out tertiary one-off characters. But this is somehow the weakest episode yet.

Not into wolf girls, huh

I'm fine with wolf girls or whatever but did we need 20 minutes of Willem passive-aggressively solving Furry Racism for this town? At first I was actively mad when he started spouting the whole moral relativism stuff, but then that turned out to all be a front because he's Really A Good Guy.

Same!

so he singlehandedly beats up all the Nazi Animals and I guess that fixes the problem?

"not for politics or justice" my ass

I would rather be mad at the show because at least that's a message. This ends up just spinning wheels for an episode to reiterate that yes, Willem acts distant but is really a caring guy who's deeply concerned about others.

It's so frustrating! Doesn't help that none of the emotional beats landed for me this episode. The final scene between him and Chtholly was the driest "I love you" I've seen in a damn while.

"You're the one who taught me to fight this way" says Chtholly, who literally sparred with him like once

Yeah, I wanted to ask about that. I get the sense that the series had like, a timeskip or something between those scenes in episode 3 that was just never communicated properly. Because that's a lot of emotion to attach to Willem telling her to try fighting "differently" once.

I don't think there was a time skip? Chtholly said something about being sent to die in ten days or so, unless they fought multiple times between then and now. If I'm getting that wrong then the show sure as hell didn't make that clear.

I think that just speaks to how bad this show has been about establishing anything. It keeps playing at these moments of drama or pathos but never does the leg work to properly set it up.

Yeah, it's a running problem with this show that I'm getting more frustrated with every week.

Whatever twist it's building towards needs to get here sooner rather than later because hooboy is it not working at whatever it's pretending to be.

Looks like we're getting into some stuff regarding Willem's past, seeing as the MP drops a name from those days. Honestly, at this point I'm not sure if the show can retroactively make me care about his character.

I've kinda had enough of him for the time being - I'd prefer we spend some time with Ctholly and the rest of the cast to give them a chance to build more character. Let me see these girls' lives outside of the tragedy hanging over their head so I can actually relate to them.

Please give Ithea more than lolicon jokes, please please

okay maybe leave Ithea on the ship

I maintain that Tiat's movie obsession is the most charming aspect of the show. More of that kind of thing, please. The other girls deserve that kind of attention.

Ctholly's supposedly our deuteragonist after all, so it seems like a good idea to let her develop outside of Sad About Fantasy Stuff and Loves Willem.

and no, cryptic visions are not a good replacement for personality

For what it's worth, those visions were decently creepy. One of the few things that has actually gotten a visceral reaction out of me.

Having a real child recite them was a good choice.

But yeah, I guess my take on Suka Suka at this point is just

Bonus Discussion

SO GUESS WHAT I CAUGHT UP ON THIS WEEK

Something not trash, I hope

nah, I mainlined five eps of Rage of Bahamut and boy lemme tell ya

aw hell yeah

Horny Dragon Girl is my spirit animal

I'm legit flabbergasted by Virgin Soul

Yeah, Genesis was a fun romp but this has got, like, shades of gray

Like with AoT, I liked Bahamut Genesis well enough, but I was never like, in love with it. But Virgin Soul has been F A N T A S T I C every week. It's got all the fun and humor of the original series but way beefier bones for its story and conflict.

And it has hotter guys, which helps.

THEY'RE REALLY HOT OKAY. It really amuses me that Nina's basically a YA fantasy heroine but more fun. With the requisite love triangle and everything: hot but politically questionable king on one side, violent bad boy freedom fighter on the other

and Nina drooling in the middle


I thought the latest episode was going to kill her from too much thirst

I almost died from thirst, lbr. Genocide king's got moves!

She really is just an infectiously fun protagonist though. Usually when you get female leads who are openly thirsty like this they're self-hating fujoshi charicatures like Kiss Him, Not Me or something.

I appreciated that scene where she absentmindedly plucks feathers out of the duck god's butt like a loves-me-loves-me-not daisy.

And hey, the show managed to have a "mistaken for pervert" joke that was actually funny! I think that counts as a modern miracle.

Rage of Bahamut manages to take well-worn tropes and do a bang-up job with them. Also I'ma be real, Nina and Charioce are honestly kind of cute together. That dance scene was so lovingly animated, even better than the scene in Genesis when Amira and Favaro dance in a pub. It shows a side of Charioce we haven't seen before, the guy underneath who wants to go out and fall in love and have fun.

It's really too bad he's also a power-hungry slaver :'D

Pobody's nerfect, right? God makes a man that hot, he's gotta have a downside to balance it out.

Can't help but wonder how much of his genocide hobby was a product of circumstances though, tbh. Like, in the aftermath of massive dragon destruction, he had to be underhanded to get anywhere. Still doesn't excuse his awful politics.

It's deffo a neat setup - it'd be easy to just make him an evil tyrant, but we can see WHY he came to be that way even if it's inexcusable. I wonder what'll happen to Azazel's plan now that Nina's ~in love~

Guy's gonna have to do a lot more than a hug to flip her trigger

Hey, you never know what he has planned for their midnight tower tryst. Maybe he'll show up bearing a rose and nothing else iykwim

Meanwhile, Dumb Knight Kaisar is trying his best to keep both hot demon boy and hot slaver king from making even poorer decisions than he does.

Is it weird I kinda want to see Kaisar and Rita together?

I mean, Rita's already adopted Kaisar's zombified hand. Even calls him the father! I love how the hand has its own clothes and everything, this show is amazing.

I'm usually allergic to dudes dating anime girls who "just happen" to look like kids when they're eons old, but dammit they have chemistry

It also helps that Rita doesn't act like a kid; she's an old lady who is constantly extremely Done with life

She even drives him to action while he's being a drama queen over his position! The best partners are the ones who support you, but also kick you in the ass when you're being a doof.

Or rocket punch you with their detachable arm, in her case

God I love this show.

Never forget that bit in Genesis when she shoots her arm, which shoots her fist, which flicks the antidote to cure dragon-riding demon Joan of Arc

Speaking of Good Anime, you been keeping up with Royal Tutor?

Did you mean: "They're Good Boys, Heine?" Hell yeah I have!

They're Good Boys, Except Licht

Okay that's mean. Licht actually had a really good episode this week.

Licht is surprisingly not 100% terrible, as it turns out! He's just a shitty 14-year-old with very obvious taste in women.

Obvious certainly but uh, not exactly bad

coughs

[HOOTS AND HOLLERS] YEA MY BOI LICHT YOU GO GET EM

Royal Tutor does have a really strong sense for character though. Licht's a pretty dang believable teenager with regards to his dad.

"You don't understand me!" [runs out to most obvious haunt]

Viktor's such a good dad too, actually taking Licht's complaints to heart. Real MVP there.

It's actually really nice to see a more grounded parental relationship in anime. Most anime parents are either dead or total assholes.

Move aside, Endeavor; Anime Dad of the Week is Viktor von Glanzreich

Viktor's just a loving dad who doesn't always show it properly because of his circumstances.

It's endearing to see two flawed people doing their best to understand each other better even if they don't always get it right.

Even if Licht thinks his dad is also incredibly embarrassing

I mean, if my dad looked perpetually 18 and had people asking him to sire their grandbabies I'd be embarrassed too

They're a good family, dammit

The show's pretty unassuming but it's carved out a niche for itself in my heart. A very tiny niche.

...are you making a height joke?

In all seriousness though the relationship between Heine and Viktor has also piqued my interest. Heine says something interesting about Viktor not being the same person he was "back then", which makes me wonder if his claim to the throne was kinda sketch or something.

I could certainly go for some Courtly Intrigue to pair with the warm family fuzzies. Plus the line about Viktor being the "first person I could trust" makes me curious what Heine's past is like.

With a disgruntled noble maneuvering in the shadows, I imagine we'll be getting a lot more intrigue in the coming episodes. Somebody wants to dig up dirt on the good boys and that's just unacceptable.

They'll be humiliated if people see pics of their trip to Weiner Town

NICK.

This has been a really damn good season for fantasy anime

What else've you been watching?

Grimoire of Zero has been an interesting series to follow

Oh, the furry fantasy show that's not SukaSuka

At its bones it's a pretty standard Light Novel fantasy setup, but it reminds me a lot of Chaika in its execution.

Chaika? You've got my attention there

The main thrust is this big tiger dude Mercenary traveling with a pair of witches in the middle of a big war between Witches and the Church, and it's only just started really digging into that plot. But it's a surprisingly charming romp so far. The main pair have a solid chemistry and tease each other constantly, and they have some pretty fun banter.

it also goes into some uh, blue humor that I honestly really like

A couple episodes ago they enter a town, and Mercenary has to pretend the witches are his slaves to get them through security. But Zero, the lead witch, decides to take it in another direction.


Oh my god.

and his reaction is just priceless

Great, now you've got me thinking about tiger furry porn. Never get involved with the Frosted Flakes mascot, kids.

tbf the show is pretty light on the Furry stuff, even if Zero is very clearly into her 8-foot-tall walking pillow

her what

she sleeps on top of him like a pillow, it's great

Aw, you had me thinking she had a magical dakimakura or something, which would be a lot more relatable to me.

Wait a second.


It's like Royal Tutor in that it's not hugely unique or particularly well animated, but I'm a sucker for fantasy stories and the medieval witch aesthetic on the whole.

I might check it out then!

You could always drop Frame Arms Girl for it

hint
hint

Only if the show replaces the mercenary with a dakimakura of him for the Blu-ray releases. I'm sorry, I don't make the rules around here.


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