It’s nice to have an onsen episode sometimes; I don’t think I could keep up the writing pace last week’s episode demanded for the rest of the show. That’s (of course) not to say that Hyouka entirely took the week off, only that the lower stakes of this week’s episode gave a little more breathing room to the cinematography and general character work—turns out Hyouka Lite isn’t so bad.
There are a lot of different ways to watch the same show. Myriad perspectives and ways of reading into a show’s text and subtext exist—and I don’t believe that all those different interpretations are exclusive to our particular headspaces. Why do I bring this up? Because my take on this episode differs somewhat radically from my thoughts on last episode. And that’s okay. I spent a lot of time thinking about what some of you guys said in the comments on my last post and I spent this episode trying to think about it in different, more positive terms. And, you know what? It made for a pretty great experience—much of it thanks to some of the cool things Ore Monogatari!! was doing this week.
And I’ve come to the final episode on the first disc of NISA’s original release of Toradora! As I mentioned yesterday, I didn’t really remember well what happened in this episode, so a lot of it felt new all over again to me, which is a treasured experience to be able to have again with a beloved show you’ve already seen. A lot of great visuals again in this episode: I might end up having to learn how to make gifs or webm’s before I finish the show so I can capture the neat like bits of animation that I keep seeing.
Yuki Kaji (eh…) and Saori Hayami (yay!) take the stage this week—as does stage fright for everyone involved in the Maihou Music Competition and one intensely green-eyed cat.
This is going to be one of the shorter highlights posts I’ve ever done because I wound up dropping one show this week, but compensated by writing episodic posts for three shows. So this is what it’s like when you get to the level of being an ANN reviewer…yikes.
Oh, and on Friday I finally discovered what WIXOSS is really all about.
We traded out sakuga for great character work and one heckuva a fascinating conflict this week, and I’m totally okay with that.
I tried to fit this all in a paragraph for my highlights of the week. I couldn’t do it. The pain of watching good cartoons is real, guys. I’ll try and keep it as short as I can.
I was worried coming into this episode, as the popular opinion on the streets (read: Anitwitter) seemed to be that this episode wasn’t very good.
I disagree. This wasn’t my favorite episode of Zankyou no Terror, but it was more that serviceable. (EDIT: Apparently the ruckus has to do with believability problems with FBI allowing a bombing to take place under their command. Y’all are too grounded in the real world.)
This episode we saw the return of (better) visual storytelling to Zankyou no Terror, as well as giving us a number of parallels and contrasts on which to ponder. There were also a TON of facial expressions this episode, most of them revealing small details in tiny moments that are easy to miss.
Sure, there are some problems with this show, starting with the characters. But, it’s time to stop pretending that the sense of foreboding each episode creates isn’t a noteworthy feat in itself. Some shows do things better than other shows, and selector infected WIXOSS does a great job of controlling atmosphere each week, and has been doing it since the very first episode. Creating an appropriate atmosphere for your show isn’t enough to make a show great on its own, but it’s foolish to disregard a show’s good traits because not all of its parts are of equal quality.