Fall 2016 Midseason Check-in

I don’t think it’s burnout, per se. But at the height of my seasonal anime-watching prowess I am not. The grand total number of shows this season I’m actively keeping up with? Six.

Flip Flappers

So, what am I still watching this season? Or, perhaps “still” isn’t quite the right word, as this season is filled with shows I’m not making a huge effort to watch each week but still am planning on watching during the season in chunks or marathons or however else it turns out. But freeing myself from a self-imposed requirement to always watch the latest episode of each show as soon as it turns up has allowed me to watch things at a more natural pace, when I feel like it—and I’m enjoying that very much.

Keeping Up With…

Regalia: The Three Sacred Stars: It’s only got 2 episodes left, but Regalia is still one of my favorite things I’m watching, even if the weird release schedule and certain other issues have dampened my enthusiasm for it just a bit. The combination of cool 2D robot fights, warm character relationships, some neat visual ideas, and the mythic feeling the show maintains is just a really great mix of stuff I like in my anime, and even if the plot isn’t always quite up to stuff, the show never fails to deliver on those (for me) key variables. And that’s what a good Pet Show does—it keeps giving me the things I crave most from it, and everything else is just icing on the cake if it works out alright and doesn’t hamper those all-important elements. So, of course, I’m sad the show’s ending, but I’m still grateful for the miracle of it even existing.

Yuri!!! on Ice: I gave Yuri!!! my top endorsement of the season after its first episode, but my esteem for it has somewhat faded over time. This is due to a couple of factors, primarily the show’s tragic production woes (which thankfully recovered mostly for the important episode 7) and what I see as some pretty thin writing. The crux of the issue for me is that Yuri!!! has too much going on  and not enough focus to go around for it all. The intensity of Yuri and Viktor’s relationship does not, to me, match what we’ve actually seen in terms of progression, and it’s throwing me out of the pivotal moments. On the other hand, though, there’s something intriguing about this sense that stuff has been going on between Yuri and Viktor that the audience isn’t seeing—for a large part of their interactions, we’re only seeing what other people see in public. Hmmm… hmm… now I have to pay attention to what the show does with this going forward…

Bungou Stray Dogs S2: What a fine shounen romp this show has turned into after the ending of the excellent Dazai backstory arc. Cliffhangers, battles, villains that are fun to watch, a three-sided conflict with lots of plotting and scheming, Atsushi’s insecurities being rehashed AGAIN (wait, that part’s actually bad), the trashy fun of seeing these characters with the names of famous authors getting turned into typical anime battler characters… Bungou really is nailing a lot of the right notes, being competent, and overall making itself a lot of fun to watch. We’ve lost the depth that the first four episodes of the season had, but that’s fine with the show being as fun as it is. Bring me more Kyouka and Dazai in action and I’ll be happy.

Show by Rock!! #: Very few depth thoughts from me on SB69—after all, it’s just not that kind of show. Like Bungou, the main appeal here is just that I have fun watching SB69 every week thanks to its wackiness, use of music, and campy story. Moa is still the best anime smile for miles and years (her focus episode was stunning), and the introduction of space and BUD VIRGIN LOGIC and Daggar’s comeback and those prissy richboy unicorns and everything else is just so very SB69 and so very fun to watch. And that’s all I have to say about that.

Lostorage incited WIXOSS: Honestly, I’m not even sure what it is that’s keeping me keeping up with Lostorage, but here we are at the midpoint of the season and I haven’t fallen behind. As far as I can tell, Lostorage is inferior to the original WIXOSS series in every conceivable way, but I keep on trucking in hopes of the signature WIXOSS moments, which do appear every now and then. The more sober nature of this iteration of the franchise keeps me sort of thinking that it’s going to try to go for a coherent thematic statement, but I’m trying to be smart about things and not get my hopes up too high in that direction.

Occultic;Nine: Even more than LostorageOccultic;Nine being here surprises me. There isn’t really much in the show that I really like since it lost the first episode’s insane, frenetic pacing, and there’s plenty I actively dislike, but… maybe it’s just a case of something being bad for me and me wanting to watch it even so. Who knows if I’ll actually finish it. Please bring back episode one’s nonsense, that was the best thing the show had going for it, because the characters and the story and everything else is just so egregious that I’m not sure if it even justifies it’s own existence. Yes, I know, a big endorsement.

Said Farewell to…

Girlish Number: (After 5 episodes) Well, my hopes that Girlish Number would have more to it than just snark feel like they’ve finally run out. After the show’s third episode, I was thinking it was starting to move in that direction,  but episodes 4 and 5 lapsed back into the same patterns that I found so tiring in the first three. The show’s neither visuals or characters (aside from Gojou!) interesting enough to me to make up for the fact that this just seems like one long tongue-in-cheek shade-throwing exercise at the anime industry. And while, yeah, the industry definitely deserves it, Girlish Number doesn’t really have enough edge to it to feel like it’s actually doing anything compelling. Sorry Watari…

Shuumatsu no Izetta: (After 4 episodes) Too much fanservice, not enough solid characterization, weightless action. That would be the quick summary of the issues that led me to drop Izetta, but I think overall there was a sense of unengagement with the show that even conceptual pluses like magic and Fine being cool and competent couldn’t overcome.

The Great Passage: (After 2 episodes) There’s a chance that I could go back to this one later once it gets put on Amazon, but process of downloading the torrents each week was more trouble than I wanted to bother with for a show that, while I thought was quite good, was also just a tad too quiet to stick in my mind over the course the intervening weeks between episodes. And, sadly, the truth is that simulcasts that I drop during the season usually wind up not being shows I come back to in the future—there’s just too much other stuff I want to see to stick with or return to things that didn’t stand out as truly remarkable for me early on.

the-great-passage-2-34

What About…?

Flip Flappers: Adored it up through episode 4, which was the last episode I watch. It’s on hold for now since I don’t care to watch it along with the rest of the community—and it’s popular enough in my social circles that I can’t ignore the chatter. So, the solution (as with Sound! Euphonium 2—incidentally the chatter I’m avoiding for Flip Flappers is basically the same as what caused me to hold on Eupho) is to wait out the storm and come back to the show later on in the season on my own terms. I’m happy with this.

March comes in like a lion: I have very good reasons to believe that I will like this show a great deal when the urge to continuing moving forward with it hits me. I’m just waiting on the whim to strike, and then we’ll be off to to the races.

Haikyuu!! S3: “Wait, but didn’t you swear off Haikyuu!! after Seijoh lost at the end of last season?” YES AND I STILL HAVENT FORGIVEN THE SHOW. But that being said I heard thing about Tsukki getting his moment to shine and that pulled me back in. Right now I’m waiting on the season to end so I can marathon the remainder all at once, but as of episode five I feel that S2’s faults are still somewhat present in S3, although not in such damning quantities. But my emotional investment remains shattered, so at this point I’m just in it for as much fun as I can glean out. And that’s fine.

Girlish Number


———Anything else I haven’t mentioned at this point I either dropped after episode one or didn’t actually try out, so that about covers things from me here!

What have you guys been keeping up with this season?

22 thoughts on “Fall 2016 Midseason Check-in

  1. Heh. The title says check-in, but the first picture says set-off.

    I was wondering about Flip Flappers until I got to the what-about section. What you say there makes sense. For me it’s the perfect show to watch on a weekly basis, and I’m not all that active in the anime community, so unless I check out the dedicated thread on animesuki (which I rarely do), I’m going into the show fairly innocently. So far, the show hasn’t let me down, and when there’s a chance to take the wrong way, they show’s been consistently taking the right way (for the way I watch the show, mind you). I’m confident you’ll enjoy it once you’ll get around to it.

    I wish I could disagree with you on Youri on Ice, but I feel pretty much the same way. It’s a promising show that doesn’t really make good on its promise. But when it does work it works beautifully. It doesn’t help my enjoyment that Yuri himself is such obvious ganbatte-material, and I find him rather dull. Nearly every other skater is more interesting. What they do get right, though, is how different Yuri’s charisma is on and off the ice. That part works like a charm. (Aside: The little guy who admires Yuri? I absolutely loved his performance – that cheeky little tap dance number.)

    I really wish I could like Regalia, because I like the what I hear about the production staff, and I love that they champion 2-D animation. But, alas, it just doesn’t click with me. I tried more than once.

    I sort of agree about Girlish Number, but considering that totally misread the first season of Oregairu, and that I do see elements that might go somewhere… I don’t know. It really might pick up, who knows? The plot development near the end of the last episode I’ve seen might point towards a turning-point, but again… I don’t know. I said it before, the main draw is Chitoge reaction faces.

    Fune wo Amu is my undisputed favourite this season. But then I’m perhaps the one guy who actually gets excited by the premise of dictionary making. On top of being a good anime with great attention to body language, it’s – for me – a geeky pleasure. (I realised at university that I really like linguistics, even though my main subject was sociology.)

    Izetta I dropped, too. For me, it wasn’t the fanservice; the dealbreaker was the way the show romanticised war. It’s like a photoreverse GATE to me. While GATE seemed like an unquestioning frog-eye view of a military setting, but with a generally good-natured basis to build on (if you’re not non-Japanese, or female), Izetta seems to spin a grand narrative of a romantic underdog struggle, without actually liking underdogs enough to get them right. People say the fanservice distracts from the show, but for me the lack of respect for real life humans (in favour of platitudinous stick-figures) underpins both the war-romantics, the hardware-porn, and the wetware porn. It just feels consistent to me; a show I consistently dislike.

    Interestingly, and very surprisingly, the Magical Girl Razing Project (not a typo; that’s how I think of the show) gets the opposite reaction from me. I can’t remember when I last enjoyed an everybody-dies type of show, but here I am. The show genuinely seems to like its characters, and seems sad to see them go. The cast is totally stereotypical, but they’re also so well individuated (with enough attention to detail) to make them easily distinguishible. The story has a sense of tragedy to it at times (even though it’s only a thin veneer), and it really relishes absurd imagery. Also, some of the cinematography is really, really good. Should win some sort of award for that (especially last episode). It’s still a Battle Royal type of show, first and foremost, and people who can’t stand that type of show won’t like this one either.

    San-gatsu no Lion is good. Not saying more until you watch it, which you should. Show by Rock is Show by Rock, except with less CGI (which I heartily approve).

    I really like Keijo!!!!!!!!, and last episode even had some great shots (I wonder who did the story board for this? Or should I be thanking the art director? Last episode just stood out, visually.) It’s settling into a groove and becoming a little less fresh as of late, but the way they play the shounen sports plot straight is just… I mean, our main girl has accidently upgraded the butt cannon into the vaccuum butt cannon, but this is a risky move (you can destroy your hip!). So she has to build up muscle. But as a result her butt has grown bigger, her movements have grown slower and easier to predict. So how do you train muscle control for muscles you rarely use, so that you can be less obvious? Pull out turnips from the ground without breaking them using nothing but a rope and your butt. Oh, this show. (My favourite part of the show is still ponytail communication as developed in episode two. )

    And finally I have to say that I’m really fond of Classicaloid, which has much the same appeal as Show by Rock!. Polls that matter: Which is the better pet? (a) Frederic Chopin in a box, (b) a Shoebill with a Scarf? I even learned about a new composer (I never heard of Tekla Badarzewska before.)

    I’m thoroughly enjoying myself this season.

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    • We’re setting off on the second half of the season, so it counts!

      I’m also pretty sure Flip Flappers will be something I enjoy a lot when I pick it back up! Just always better to be able to engage with things on my own terms, rather than on others.

      Yeah, Yuri himself is a bit of an issue I think. His character changing has gone in massive fits and starts, so while I do think he seems a consistent character throughout, I also feel like there’s a lack of cohesion to his personal narrative. A bummer, for sure.

      If I didn’t so abhor the character designs in Magical Girl Raising Project, I think I would have picked it back up by now for the fun factor. But, alas, I hate them so it’s a non-starter for me. D:

      More praise for Fune wo Amu… perhaps I should make efforts to avoid letting it disappear entirely from me…

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      • @Magical Girl Raising Project: I’m not sure you’d be having much fun with it. It’s too brutal, I think, for that. But I’m not sure I can judge your taste on that accurately. I do think you’d appreciate the cinematography, which is excellent. There is more character focus than I expected, but the deaths work much like in slasher horror and have a similar sense of catharsis, if you’re receptive to it. If you’re not, I suspect the added character emphasis in combination with the deaths might grate on you, because it’s neither here nor there (if I recall correctly you’re not much into horror for its own sake). I hear the Madoka comparisons a lot (which Derek mentions), but it’s really more a cross between Mai Hime and Danganronpa.

        Personally, I’m mostly fine with the character designs, but the “fish eyes” (too far sideways on the face) are creepy and not in a good way.

        @Fune wo Amu: I wonder. A lot of people, I find, are bored. I love its subtlety; it’s appeal is very similar to Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju, but – crucially for many – it lacks the theatralics. When it does go for pathos (“the great passage”) it’s hit and miss with me. The imagery is great, but the pathos itself sometimes feels more silly. I do find the talking dictionaries cute. There’s this nice thematic throughline of communication: the dictionary’s supposed to help you choose the right words, but the main character who’s sure to make a great dictionary is so far off daily life, that he doesn’t know how to use words effectively in that context. I love it dearly, because of how well it uses understatement. When it’s going for pathos, it’s more hit and miss.

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  2. Ah, Bungou’s gotten more interesting, hasn’t it? Seems like the consensus for the first season is a ‘mediocre shounen action’, at best. Only watched the first two episodes back then, but I can see myself getting back to it… still kind of like its gimmicks.

    This season has a lot of stylistically interesting shows, but I’m sticking with just the ones I genuinely want to watch every week (Passage, March, Haikyuu, Girlish Number, Natsume, Udon, and the Ms Bernard short). Also put Flip Flappers and Euph on hold, for slightly different reason to yours.Yuri… yeah, not really for me, I think I just look up the performance clips later.

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    • Whatever else you think about Bungou, it does truthfully look very pretty—so if you’re willing to wade through the lesser parts for that in wait of the better parts…

      For me, it’s less the presence of potential yuri itself and just the way certain groups scream their heads off about it. It drowns out all else about the shows for me, and Lina Lamont voice I just can’t stand it! So I’ll wait for now.

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  3. To be fair to BSD, I think the anime’s handling Atsushi’s trauma more effectively this season than last. I was actually feeling sorry for the poor kid , when before I’d just roll my eyes.

    (I do hope this season adapts the chapter focusing on his past. I’d like to hear you thoughts on it.)

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    • Agreed, although I’d say it’s better for much reduced presence more than any increase in effective portrayal. I’d rather see him suffer in the present, not in his past heh heh.

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  4. It’s an interesting season far… lot’s of good stuff, but also it’s share of duds. Off to the races!

    (As always, shows I’m watching are in italics, shows my lovely wife and I are both watching are in bold.)

    Watching:

    Brave Witches Has somehow managed to be even more insipid than it’s predecessor… and in a franchise built on casual fanservice seems to all but avoid the same. But it’s a mindless and harmless way to burn a half hour midweek.

    Flip Flappers Just goes from strength to strength, getting more amazing each episode. I still don’t know what’s going on half the time, but fortunately ANN has one of their better reviewers on the series and that helps a great deal. And your comments on FliFla and Euph show why I stay away from the “community” other than ex post facto. As I’ve said before, I don’t mind having my perceptions re-arranged but I do object to having my experience pre-determined.

    Iron Blooded Orphans 2 Took a very long time to get rolling, but finally it is. The focus is mostly off the main characters from the first cour and telling some of the ‘side stories’. And powerful stories they are… Still firmly on the same themes as the first season and executing them well.

    Izetta: The Last Witch Has actually gotten stronger the last couple of episodes now that all the pieces are on the board and the characters established. There’s a strong theme of the Gift of the Magi (O. Henry) running through Finé and Izetta’s relationship, and I like how they’re handling it. (There’s been a number of other instances of examining the price of sacrifice as well.) They keep trying to pop the villains into 3D (and the show would be better if they managed it) but so far all they’ve managed is 3D cardboard.

    Magical Girl Raising Project Just.. WOW. It’s not Madoka or YuYuYu (like some folks keep trying to make it), but an entirely different thing – and it’s GOOD. Some of the characters shade towards the tropish, but overall they’re pretty well done and their actions and roles in the conflict mostly flow well from their characterizations. I particularly like how the IRL personas are depicted as well, and how those are shown as flowing into and effecting their actions and attitudes towards the conflict and the other magical girls. Yes, it is (as Dawnstorm points out) overall a Battle Royale, but they’ve managed to bring a depth there rarely seen in such. (Mostly because there is going to be more than one winner – some want that for themselves, others want that for others. Selfishness and self sacrifice run intertwined.)

    Magic-Kyun! Renaissance Tropish garbage reverse harem without the redeeming ganbatte! and combat of Brave Witches. I still don’t know why I can’t tear myself away from this steaming pile… The MC isn’t even particularly cute.

    March Comes In Like A Lion I really don’t know what to say here. Each week it’s among the best ever of whatever theme they’re examining that week… But the overall structure is indistinct and weak. I think you’ll really like it when you do decide to dig in. It’s ready made for one of your week-by-week deep examinations in a way few shows are. (Even more so than FliFla.)

    Matoi the Sacred Slayer A weird mashup of Magical Index and Scientific Railgun. The first ep turned off a lot of people, but it is steadily getting better. On the other hand, I’m still stalled after ep3, but I can’t just drop it.

    Scorching Ping Pong Girls Fairly tropish and predictable sports/CGDCT, though slightly above average for the genre. It’s no Aokana, but it’s good enough to my CGDCT/pet show of the season.

    Sound! Euphonium 2 From one aspect, it’s a much lesser show than the first cour as it lacks the driving force of the relationship between Kumiko and Reina and the struggle to go to the Nationals. From another, it’s still one of the finest character driven character dramas out there. The writing, direction, animation, and acting remain top drawer. Being second only to your own prequel isn’t actually a bad place to be. And without giving away more than I have to – a recent episode, despite a fairly predictable ending, managed to be one the single best episodes of both series to date. And that’s a pretty high bar.

    Dropped:

    Cheating Craft (1ep) The opening episode was one long infodump monologue. Done and gone.

    Dream Festival (2eps) An idol show in the mold of AKB0048, yet despite competing against that low bar, still managed to fall short.

    Girlish Number (3 eps) Between the snark, Chitose being thoroughly unlikable, and Kuzu-P generally being a douche… we just couldn’t take it.

    Kaijuu Girls (3 eps) Kind of the reverse I can’t understand my Husband… It tried so hard, but all of the pieces are missing except for the trope-of-the-weak.

    Keijo!!!!!!!! (90 seconds) I don’t mind fanservice, but even I have my limits… and Keijo blew right past them right out of the gate. Folks keep saying how it’s really, actually, a good sports show, but I’m not buying it.

    Miss Bernard said (1 ep) I’ve been stalled at 1 ep for over a month now, so it’s formal – dropped.

    Nazotokine (4 eps) Looked interesting, turned repetitive, dropped.

    Time Bokan 24 (1ep) We are so not in this series rather sharply defined demographics. Dropped.

    ** w w w .Working!!** (3eps) Was originally a 4-koma webcomic – and it shows. Had they taken the lessons learned from Wagnaria and smoothed the flow of the show into a proper anime presentation… but they didn’t. So, choppy presentation, unlikeable characters, weirdness for weirdness sake… dropped.

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    • Don’t think I didn’t miss that subtle shot at AKB0048 😛

      I continue to look forward to Sangatsu based on people’s comments; the people who like it seem to /really/ like it, and that gives me a lot of hope for it.

      I often forget IBO exists, but I have a sneaking suspicion I’ll come back to it someday in the distant future. After all, the robots… the Mari Okada… and, again, people who like it say things about it that make me think I’d like it too.

      Matoi still exists, apparently! For some reason I’m rather glad for the show….

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      • I must apologize for the slam, I didn’t mean to be subtle. 🙂 🙂

        You’ve got some good series awaiting, I just hope they don’t fall off your radar or wait too long.

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  5. Well…so far I’ve watched nothing. Not because there’s nothing that interests me. If nothing else, Eupho 2, Stray Dogs 2, and Kaitou Joker 4, all sequels to shows I very much enjoyed, will certainly be appointment viewing in the future, hopefully the near-future. And other shows like Flip Flappers have absolutely caught my interest and hopefully I’ll find the time to watch those too. TBH my biggest motivator for watching things weekly for a long time was to keep up with the weekly posts and conversation here, and of course that’s no longer a thing, but the other factor is that lately most of my spare recreational time has been going into gaming again. I just got a PS4 Pro to replace my 15 year old PS2, so I actually have new console games to play for the first time in years. Between that, LLSIF, Littlewitch Romanesque (a pretty fun VN I picked up a while ago that I’m still playing through), Pokemon Go, and the recent release of Civ 6, that’s most of my free time right there.

    Not that I’ve been watching no anime at all – Now that I can finally watch Blu-Rays on the PS4 (and also got a new TV at the same time) I’m starting to go back and watch some of the anime I’ve picked up on Blu-Ray over the last several months in anticipation of getting this PS4. First ones I’ve started with were the Nanoha movie I imported a while ago and, after I finished Sunshine, I’ve gone back to watch Love Live S1 again. Specifically the dubbed version of it this time, which I actually think they did a good job with. I’ll still stick to the subs for myself in the future, but I’d have no problem showing the dub to my Mom or my friends. I’m also going to see the Girls und Panzer movie tomorrow, and really looking forward to that.

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    • I’d love to go see Girl und Panzer, but I don’t want to see it bad enough to put up with the trek to Seattle and the POS theatre it’s running in. Instead, we’re going to slightly less POS and more tolerable local theatre and watching Kiki’s Delivery Service, 35mm print in sub. They’re planning on working through the entirety of Miyazaki/Ghibli over the next year and some. Last month was Spirited Away, next month is Howl’s… (They lead off with Totoro, which we missed…)

      As to the weekly… yeah, I miss it badly. I think I’m going to go ahead with my plan to start a blog that will focus on regular/weekly discussions. (No offense Bless!) I figure I’ll launch it with the new season.

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      • Ooh, let me know when you do! I’ll be one of your first subscribers.

        35mm sub is great – wish I could see that, esp. since Kiki is one of my favorite Ghiblis. The theater in DC that has Garupan is about 30 mins. drive from me and it’s very good about showing anime (also saw Expelled from Paradise, Summer Wars, A Letter to Momo, and the Love Live movie there in the past couple of years), but it’s all digital – I don’t think they even have a traditional film projector.

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        • Wing, you’re penciled in as one of my mainstays! 🙂 I don’t know that my writing will be much of draw, my main hope is to provide at least a weekly threadstarter.

          I’m certainly not going to stop hanging around here though!

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      • None taken! Sorry I can’t serve as the meeting point any longer—I just don’t have the time and energy to create weekly posts to start discussion anymore. Best of luck with starting the new blog and let me know about it so I can pop in every once in a while. Hope I’ll still see you around here on occasion!

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    • I don’t know if you’ve tried the Sunshine dub, but it’s incredibly good; possibly the best anime dub I’ve ever heard (although I lack experience with the established dub classics like Bebop). And rewatching things is always good—I continue to grow in appreciation for the exercise of rewatching my past favorites.

      As I said to dererkl below, I am sorry that I haven’t been able to keep up the regular weekly posts. Just not enough time, not enough energy. Ah, for my university days…

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      • Can’t watch the Sunshine dub since AFAIK all but the first episode is behind Funi’s paywall, but I did listen to at least some of the first episode back when it first came out, and it sounded fine. Best dub I’ve ever listened to is still Stand Alone Complex, IMO.

        And no need to apologize. The years after uni are a big life shift and I went through it recently enough that I still remember what it was like – that’s not something I’d ever hold against anyone.

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  6. Hm…I see what you mean about Yuri!!!. Personally, though, I’m on the side that there’s nothing important going on between Yuri and Viktor that the audience isn’t seeing. That outside of what we’ve seen, they have a pretty typical coach-student relationship, focused on training and, well, bathing together (NB: which is NORMAL in Japan). It actually frightens me a little just how much so many viewers are reading into it–to me, their relationship is meaningful because of what we’re seeing develop on the screen, not because they’re already ‘there’, if you know what I mean. If I was reading more into it, then I would probably feel like you: that it’s simply not supported by what we’ve been shown.

    Overall, I was a little surprised to find that this season seems to be underwhelming you, since it’s literally killing me having to try to keep up with 6 series. (I usually only follow 3/4.) Though I guess your ambivalence about Yuri and Eupho in particular explain why I’m enjoying the season so much more. Besides Yuri, I’m watching Bungou, March Lion, The Great Passage, Eupho and http://WWW.WORKING. Admittedly, I’m only I’m only watching the last one because I want to finish that series (for good) this year… (^^;

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    • I’ve been thinking about this comment since you left it, and from your point of view I actually think this makes the show’s writing feel much more cohesive and less spotty (as I’ve mentioned above). With the kiss not being a relational consummation, the progression works better—although I’d still argue that the show as a whole feels rushed and like it skips over a lot of connective tissue.

      I would say that I don’t really find myself underwhelmed by the season, though! It’s just a change for me; when I first started out watching seasonal anime, I was keeping up with 20+ shows a week. Around 10 was where I settled once I got a job, and this 6 seems much more flexible for me so I can have more time to watch and do other things.

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      • although I’d still argue that the show as a whole feels rushed and like it skips over a lot of connective tissue.

        Hmmm…I can’t really argue against that. To a certain extent, I think they’re really catering for viewers who have more than a passing knowledge of figure skating. There are so many things I find myself able to put into context earlier than most other viewers simply because I know quite a lot about the current figure skating scene and the status of the GP series within that. E.g I knew a few weeks back that we’d start skipping from tournament to tournament, from which I figured that we’d be focusing on the issues that skaters (and their coaches) face at the competitions themselves (pressure, rivals, unexpected emergencies).

        This also means, I think, that I don’t really treat the characters as ‘normal people’ who happen to be elite figure skaters. I mean, they’re normal people in so far as they are people like anyone else, but as the sound director pointed out in this interview I translated for Nachi, they worry about and struggle with challenges that none of us really understand. And as celebrities, they also use social media in a way that I sense most viewers aren’t picking up on (like, it’s used for ‘fan service’). And well, you’ve seen what I wrote about media and the ‘romance lens’…though at the moment, I don’t think it’s something that I want to talk about in more detail in relation to YOI… (^^;

        Around 10 was where I settled once I got a job, and this 6 seems much more flexible for me so I can have more time to watch and do other things.

        As long as you don’t ever feel like you’re missing out on anything!

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  7. Perhaps a bit late, but I had to also recommend that you not forget about Fune wo Amu. It has imo a great adult romance without the usual bs of misunderstandings, etc. I love Flip- Flappers for its own surrealist approach, lack of coherent plot notwithstanding. Izetta has gone totally off the rails and I’ve given up on it. Sound! Euphonium 2 is not as strong to date as the original series, but I still find myself watching it as soon as it streams.

    Cheers, I enjoy your fairly unique perspective on the anime scene and have watched a few that I wouldn’t have otherwise based on your comments. 😁

    Like

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