Welcome to Week 10! The end of the season is in sight, and I’m pretty happy about that. This season has pretty much been a total letdown and I’m more than ready to move on. I’m not going to do a season preview because I don’t like those, but if you’re interested in knowing what I’m looking forward to, I did an ask.fm answer on the subject not long ago.
Trending Up: Sailor Moon Crystal, Haikyuu!!
Trending Down: Argevollen, Aldnoah.Zero, Fairy Tail
Zankyou no Terror, Episode 8: It’s back, and so are the weekly blog posts!
Free! Eternal Summer, Episode 10: So that’s Sousuke’s story, in its entirety. To be honest, although I definitely sympathize with his plight, it didn’t ring quite as true for me as last week’s drama with Haru. I struggle to believe that Sousuke’s coaches (do they actually exist in this show, really?) would have let him train to the point that he would destroy his own body like that, but suspension of disbelief, you know? You kind of needed it all over this episode—with Sousuke actually swimming in the race, to him powering through to the end. All in all, though, the character moments were pretty solid, with Rin continuing to display an impressive range of emotions. He truly has grown into a fine young man, and I’m looking forward to seeing what role he plays in the final episodes.
Glasslip, Episode 10: I knew it would eventually get to the point that Glasslip would become so absurd it would be funny. We have crossed the line. Between Sachi’s double confession to both Hiro and Touko to Jonathan the chicken leading Touko to Kakeru in the school building to Yana and Yuki’s continually impregnable interactions to the tent chat between Kakeru’s parents and Touko, this week was just full of weird stuff being treated with absolute seriousness. And because of that, Glasslip sits in a really strange place right now—I don’t really care about any of the characters at this point (except Yana, a bit) and I don’t care about the plot at all. And still, I wouldn’t miss my weekly dose of Glasslip for anything. Well, not anything, but you get the idea.
Argevollen, Episode 10: No sugarcoating it; this was not Argevollen‘s best episode. However, there still were some interesting things to see with Samonji and his faithful lieutenant called to the central offices. Independent Unit 8 seems to run along just fine (aside from the dude who ate bad fish—that fish looked weird, so I’m not surprised) without their captain present, at least in maintenance tasks. But, despite the fact that they pulled out alright, they kind of fell into disarray in combat situations. It was sort of padding for Samonji, to show just how difficult his job is, to let an inexperienced member of the squad take over and let him fail. I also liked that we got a bit more color added to some of the side character—one’s a failed idol, one picks on old women. You know, the usual. If anything, it just reinforces the theme that these are people beyond their duties as soliders and I do appreciate that. Argevollen refuses to dehumanize the soldiers. I want to see what else they can do with that theme, but, if nothing else, “soldiers are human” is still a worthwhile message to be sending.
Aldnoah.Zero, Episode 10: Well, the first section of this episode, up the first time it cut to Slaine, was downright dreadful. Lots of yelling, monologuing, and hilariously absurd lines from all corners of the court. First, it was Inaho’s question to the princess whose breathing and heartbeat had stopped: “Are you alright?” Then, we got a whole lot of incomprehensibility from Rayet, whose thought process apparently is: “It’s your fault that my father tried to assassinate you and then got killed.” And then Inaho stops a suddenly suicidal Rayet, but hands the gun back to her: “You tried to kill our best chance to stop the war, but we aren’t enemies.” Thankfully, Slaine’s pieces of the episode (like normal) were far less horrible, and the show didn’t just screw him over this week. Saazbaum actually seems to be a pretty decent guy, other than the fact that he’s willing to sacrifice an entire planet of innocent people to overthrow the monarchy. Anyways, this show is pretty silly right now. I just hope Slaine and Hime-sama get to meet before the end of the season.
Sailor Moon Crystal, Episode 5: Hey, that was like…actually a pretty decent episode. Lots more moments to screencap than in past weeks, when I’ve been hard pressed to find anything interesting enough to record. Makoto is a great addition to this show because she brings a sort of energy and passion that seems built on more substantial stuff than Usagi’s hyperactive meanderings across the screen. This episode also had the most thematic heft to date going for it, with Nephrite’s line, “You humans are so obsessed with appearances, but ignorant of the true nature of things,” standing as a pretty sharply true rebuke of humanity—nice to get that sort of observation from a villain. There were also some nice challenges to the “romance necessary to identity mentality” and a promising affirmation of the hopeful power of love. And all of this (mostly) happened without feeling too cheesy. I was on the fence with Sailor Moon Crystal after the last episode, but this one convinced me to stay around a bit longer.
Fairy Tail, Episode 23: Fairy Tail, on the other hand, is doing its level best to make me want to purge the 2014 iteration of this once exciting show from both my memory and my watchlist. Time paradox=a forgotten concept (if they destroy the portal, how would they have the diary that told them to destroy the portal?). As far as climaxes go, the destruction of Eclipse was a basically random event, a side-effect of Natsu’s battle with Future Rouge. And we got some clumsy foreshadowing about somebody eventually going to kill Frosch (except that was in the old future, but nevermind that). And we spent a heckuva a lot of time just watching stuff dissolve into yellow sparkles. Oh, and then there was the random dream-thing sequence. Whatever. I don’t care anymore. Also, dragon slayers are apparently actually useless against dragons.
Haikyuu!!, Episode 23: Are you hyped for next episode? Karasuno’s at a deuce with Seijoh, everyone’s tired, but everyone is pumped up beyond belief. And that final set from Kageyama (he didn’t expect Hinata to be there, but the shrimp was) to the ultimate decoy was awesome. Haikyuu!! is so good at ending episodes on a high note and getting you pumped up about seeing next week’s episode. Obviously, that’s something of a function of the nature of the show, but I think I prefer it a lot to the ole cliffhanger gambit. I do love how jacked everyone on both sides of the court is about this game, and seeing Oikawa get foiled here and there is pretty satisfying, even if I don’t hate him (at all). The animation also took a bit of a step down this week, but I’m guessing that they’re doing a bit of budget saving for what’s sure to be an explosive finale next week. I can’t wait. Oh, and I almost forgot: the image of the hand reaching for the jersey? That was great.
Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun, Episode 10: Funny stuff this week. Lots of cute stuff this week; both high school boys and girls pining over their crushes. Seo x Waka is adorable. Kashima x Hori is adorable. Nozaki x Sakura is adorable. Mamikoshiba is adorable all on his own. I mean, I don’t know what else they could have put into the episode to make it more likable than it already was. We even got some great animation during Kashima and Hori’s swordfight. Everyone is the show is just straight up crazy, and I love it. They’re honestly some of the most internally diverse characters in an anime comedy that I’ve ever seen—everyone has different moods and no one is ever tied to a single character gag. Love this show to death. Kashima singing in black and white with dramatic music just killed me. And Seo’s just sitting there, like: “Yeah, okay, you suck.”
Hunter x Hunter, Episode 146: Please don’t end, please don’t go, please don’t stop. Togashi, please be healed. Please start writing again.
It’s freaking devastating that we are losing this show in less than two weeks. This episode, AGAIN, Togashi demonstrates just how empathetic a writer he is—it doesn’t matter who you are, Togashi says, whether you’re a hyper-evolved ant king bent on world domination or a creepy ghost-face alternate personality, you deserve to be loved. And the fact that this emotional arc of Killua and Nanika’s relationship was brought around with such sensitivity in such a short time just goes to show that almost nothing is beyond Togashi’s reach. The parallels between Mereum’s situation and Alluka/Nanika’s situation, I think, really are striking. Here you have a fantastically powerful character isolated by their abilities, and yet without love they are nothing. From a massive arc to a much shorter one, Togashi brings us a similar message. And it’s absolutely beautiful.
This Week’s Question: How will you survive life after Hunter x Hunter?