Made in Abyss Episode 7: Testing grounds

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The big reveal in this episode was pretty nice. I think it explains why everyone was so okay with letting Riko journey into the Abyss. They would have been aware that Ozen was Lyza’s mentor and that Riko is effectively dead already. I wasn’t sure what to make of Ozen before this episode, but I’m glad she’s here to prepare Riko and Reg for the Abyss.

I think this scene was my only real issue with the episode. This scene felt more like a forced cameo than an actual contribution. Habo’s ominous line about the vessel and Riko’s secret would have made more sense if it didn’t happen immediately before Ozen tells Riko everything.

I’m also curious about this idea that White Whistles are trump cards. Why exactly is it so dangerous to give away a White Whistle’s special abilities? Who are they being protected from? Jealous competitors?

I only have on question about the Curse-Repelling Vessel. Ozen states that Riko is half-correct about the curse-repelling part. Does that mean that the vessel actually blocks the other negative effects of the curse? Ozen’s description made it sound like it doesn’t do anything to defend against the curse other than reanimate the dead. I’m just curious.

Ozen’s secret was a bit of a disappointment for me. I don’t think it’s a problem because it makes sense with her personality, but I was expecting her condition to come from something more than self-experimentation. Maybe I was thinking about her the wrong way.

Also, it took me a second to realize that Reg “went limp” as Riko woke up because of the backlash from using his laser.

Meh…I guess this is only fair.

Sakurada Reset Episode 20: Closing the loop

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This episode really came full circle. Even after everything this series has given us, we getting right back to the MacGuffin, the very first case. I will say, though, that I found the beginning of the episode to be pretty jarring. I know that last week’s episode showed Urachi uncovering his mother, but I didn’t expect the episode to start with the abilities erased.

I think the strangest point for this episode has to be Sumire (which is probably becoming a recurring theme in this show). The episode makes it a point to emphasize that she has a very different attitude without her ability. However, her conversation with Kei is pretty much the same as an earlier conversation they had in that exact spot.

Also, the scene by the water makes it seem like she still has some awareness of what has happened. Maybe it was just a mundane Sumire grieving over being rejected by Kei, but I have a hard time not thinking there’s more than that.

Kei’s reunion with his family was something I definitely didn’t expect in this episode. It makes sense that he would want to see them again after finally being freed from the town, but I wasn’t even thinking of the possibility. I think it’s mostly because he’s never really expressed much regret. I think this episode really made it clear how much he’s been holding himself back throughout this entire series, especially when he makes his apology.

I also liked how the scene played out in general. There was no grand gesture explaining everything to us. Kei acts appropriately by acting like a stranger, allowing us as the audience to put the pieces together. I always appreciate stuff like that.

While I wasn’t a huge fan of that final flashback before Misora resets, I can understand why it’s there. We have seen Misora reset as a reaction to someone crying since the very beginning of the series, so it’s probably worth the reminder. I must say that I really appreciate that the series was willing to use something from so long ago to make Kei’s plan work.

So now that we’ve gotten a taste of how the world without abilities looks, I guess it’s time for Kei to fix everything by beating Urachi. Did the preview suggest that Kei might get Sumire’s foresight ability? I mean, he’s going after the MacGuffin, after all. That seems crazy.

Knight’s & Magic Episode 7: More combat

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This week’s episode was just a joy to watch. I still feel like I’m missing a lot of context in this series, but both of the fights in the episode were really cool. If I had to name a favorite in this episode, I would probably choose the Guair. I felt like I couldn’t see past the gimmicks in the other suits, and Dietrich’s fight was pure swordplay…much more appealing.

The result of the mock battle wasn’t super surprising either…they made it pretty clear last week that the lab was a good support system for Ernesti’s crazy inventions.

This scene is my main question for this episode. I’m not sure if this was explained earlier in the series, but I don’t remember much being said about mana regeneration in this world. Was this something new that Ernesti developed in this suit or has it just never been a significant factor? Also, Ernesti’s suit seems to be getting closer and closer to a Gundam…

I was initially skeptical about the battle between the former king and his grandson. It didn’t make sense to me that Ernesti would create the same Silhouette Knight for both of them. But after the fight, it was pretty clear that the two were very similar. I guess it works out.

And I guess this episode was introducing a new foe of some sort. Is this girl supposed to be related to the beasts? She seems important enough to be a character.

Also, it really sucks to be Addy…

Fate/Apocrypha Episode 7: The final battle approaches

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Overall, this episode didn’t really feel like much, but it built up a lot near the end. I’m pretty annoyed at the beginning of the episode for fizzling a very obviously overblown cliffhanger instantly. The end of the episode seems to be moving towards a large-scale battle, though, which is something I always like to see. I’m curious whether this battle is related to the battle from the beginning of the series, but Siegfried, Jack, and Mordred are missing.

I guess the episode was meant to show Sieg resolving himself and rejoining the fight, but his scenes felt more like distractions than anything else. I suppose it was better than the time wasted on Shakespeare’s speech…

I’m not sure what to make of this flashback(?) scene. Was that a burning Fuyuki? Some memory from Shirou?

You’re one to talk about “cowardice”, Assassin. Didn’t you open that battle with poison fog? I guess I can’t complain since the Assassin of Red just summoned a floating fortress.

I’ll be really surprised if we don’t lose some Servants in this upcoming battle. Hopefully, we’re in for some epic fighting next week. Though, I admit I wouldn’t be surprised if we get a decent number of flashbacks and memory sequences to flesh out some characters before they die.

Princess Principal Episode 6: More fathers

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It looks like this series will continue to jump through time for now as it introduces the main characters. Dorothy’s story has probably been the best of the backstories so far. Chise’s father was a bit of a side thought, and we only really saw the scars from Beatrice’s relationship with her father. Dorothy ended up having a genuine heartfelt episode with her father. It wasn’t that crazy of a story, but it sure was presented well.

It’s hard to even judge the father too since the episode seemed to suggest that he had a legitimate mental issue. But I guess the moral of the story is it sucks to be a spy…

Also, it looks like we’re up to case 18. Just how much is this show planning on jumping around? At this point, I’m not even sure how the gaps in time are going to hold their own.

Beatrice and Dorothy made for a good combination in this episode. We’ve seen them interact in previous episodes, but this episode really establishes as pretty similar characters. Whereas Beatrice latched on to Princess to deal with her past, Dorothy became a bit more cynical as a result. They’re a nice example of separate personalities forged from similar pasts.

The fight in this episode was also pretty surprising. We’ve seen Dorothy used largely as a glorified distraction, but she’s actually pretty strong on her own. It also makes her feel much more normal in comparison to the other spies. Ange uses crazy cyberpunk magic, Beatrice has a fancy voice-changer, and Chise is a literal ninja. It makes Dorothy feel like she just exists to ground the cast, which isn’t necessarily bad.

There was only really one part of this episode that I couldn’t follow. Why exactly was it okay for Dorothy’s identity to be revealed? I understand that she would have the most familiarity with the target, but it seems like it would be very easy for her to get exposed on a mission like this.

Kakegurui Episode 6: Getting more insane

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This episode was refreshing in its own way because of how Midari was introduced. I’m still not sure if the timing of her introduction in the earlier episode made sense, but it really adds to the game in this episode. Because of her parallels with Yumeko, she becomes pretty much the first character so far who would be incredibly unlikely to cheat. It makes this game harder to read because we’re no longer looking for the cheating method of the person who created the game (who would know the game the best).

As for how the game will be handled itself, the preview already gives away that Midari didn’t get her gun. To be fair, this is also an anime and Yumeko is the protagonist, but let’s not get carried away. Yumeko doesn’t seem to be the type of person to bluff, so I’m guessing she found some way to distinguish the guns. Her final comment was probably meant to indicate that she knew it was her gun. Maybe it means that she also rigged the gun to backfire or something too? Not sure.

Taking a step back, the beginning of the episode felt weird to me. I know it was pretty obvious that Mary would give Yumeko the winnings from last week, but it felt like such a casual thing in this episode. Did I misunderstand something in the previous episode? But that aside, the whole piece about Yumeko wanting to stay a house pet to take advantage of the official matches didn’t come as too much of a surprise. I think I said something along those lines earlier in this series.

This comment from Suzui also ties into another question I’ve been meaning to ask. Does Yumeko actually consider her loss in the roulette game to be a true loss to the student council president? I get that she’s pretty methodical, but should she really have expected the president to interfere? And if it really is a true loss in her eyes, I wish the show would give me a better sense of why the president is so capable that she’s able to outwit Yumeko. If all she needed was the element of surprise, that could have been literally anybody.

Just putting this here for no real reason.

Re:Creators Episode 17: Plans everywhere

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Whew…we finally got an episode. This week’s episode seems to answer the question I’ve been asking since the Chamber Festival plan was created. Why would Altair even play along with this plan? Based on the episode, I guess the answer is that she expected it to happen and already planned to defeat them anyway.

There are a lot of good moments in this episode, so I want to take a second to address the action first. For the most part, I thought the abilities displayed in the episode looked pretty cool, but I thought the fighting itself was lacking. Alicetaria pretty much played cat and mouse with Rui and Selesia was constantly slashing and shooting at a shield of swords. That being said, the scene where Alicetaria uses her lightning to stop Rui’s blasts was pretty awesome.

I really don’t have much to say about the Mirokuji fight. I still think it’s not an interesting fight to have in a show that pits different genres against each other. If you compare the face-off to the fight between Alicetaria and Rui, they’re just completely different in terms of atmosphere. Though, I will say that the “attacking through glass” thing was cool.

Alicetaria is probably my favorite surprise from this episode. We already saw part of her planning, but I wasn’t expecting her to fight alongside Altair while putting it into action. She looks like she’s building up to a big betrayal moment, which I look forward to seeing. But even aside from that, this episode had Alicetaria looking much more expressive and dynamic as a character, as opposed to her previous self.

And then, of course, I want to talk about the big Blitz Talker scene in this episode. While there’s some pretty standard stuff about brushing off the efforts of the successful in that scene, I liked that Suruga was straight about her motivations, without any of the fluffier speech that the other authors (and Sota) used. She knows what she wants to accomplish and she’s truly aware that she’s the god of Blitz’s world.

I’m also not too confused about the fact that Suruga revived Blitz’s daughter. I’ve interacted with enough people to know that fans have no problem with the idea of bringing a dead character back to life in anime, so it’s not like it would be hard to get fan acceptance.

Made in Abyss Episode 6: What’s in the box?

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This episode ended up being a pretty fun. There was a decent amount going on despite being a bit less-focused on showing the Abyss. The world was developed a bit more with a tour from Marulk.

Ozen was also a pretty interesting introduction…she’s definitely got the creepy feel to her, but there’s clearly more to her than that if Lyza trusted her to carry Riko out of the Abyss. If I had to voice a complaint, it would probably be regarding the repeated scenes in the beginning of the episode, but that’s not a new one for me.

Riko’s vomiting incident in this episode was pretty interesting because of how prevalent it was despite being in the background. Ozen starts out by explaining that it’s a side effect of the curse and then makes an off-hand comment about Riko’s smell.

Usually, this would be the point where the joke dies, but it gets brought back when Riko hears about the bath in her room. At no point does she ever say anything like “I have to get rid of this smell”. She just jumps at the opportunity to clean herself up right when it is presented.

Reg also continues to be a fun contradiction too. He’s unnaturally frightened by the idea of a ghost, but he’s also the very reason that Riko has survived as long as she has.

While it might seem a bit mean to Riko, I didn’t mind watching Ozen take her down a peg. Riko’s rushing down to the abyss because of a pretty tenuous reason, so it’s nice that an adult finally calls her out on it. Though, it also makes me wonder why the other adults are not only okay with it but also unable to recognize Lyza’s handwriting. I mean…weren’t there notes in the journals that were brought back?

We got a bit of a fun cliffhanger at the end of the episode. I’m not sure whether I’m more interested in the box or the monster that Riko saw, but maybe we’re about to learn some cool secrets of the Abyss next week.

Sakurada Reset Episode 19: Putting things together

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This week’s episode seemed to finally go into Sumire’s plan. A lot of the explanation went the way I expected, like the fact that the original Sumire died so that the fake Sumire could beat the lie detector and the fact that Sumire’s entire motivation was to allow Kei to be with Misora. And I liked the part about how the original Sumire pushed all of the hardship and suffering on the fake Sumire.

I guess the part that bugged me was how Sumire’s power factored into all of this. In order to die for this plan, she had to know enough about the future to put a lot of her plan into action. But if the Sumire we see now is a fake, the original Sumire couldn’t have seen her future, so how much information did she really have? The fake acknowledges that it was a gamble in this episode, but it seems more astronomical the more I think about it. How did she even know the story of Urachi’s past?

Speaking of which, I also didn’t quite understand the story about Urachi’s past. Urachi’s father states that he likes abilities because he likes the idea of giving the weak miracles to overcome their weakness. However, he still erased abilities in most of the world. I guess he’s saying it would be nice if everyone in the world could use abilities without killing each other, but it feels so empty. Was he working towards that? Was that what he wanted Urachi to do?

There’s also something vaguely suspicious about the fact that Misora has been reversed to her state two years ago. I mean, reverting any character progress in Misora is par for the course, but it seems suspicious that Misora and the fake Sumire are both at around the same age. It’s almost like Kei is meant to join them…

Filler Post: It happens sometimes…

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Sorry for the simple post today. If you’re following me on Twitter, you might know that I’m in Finland this week for work. It’s been a pretty busy week and I’ve done the best I can to stay on top of my blog posts. Unfortunately, I’ve had no time to myself today, so I’m gonna have to get creative. Given my recent post about blogging principles, I felt like it was worth explaining myself today.

My philosophy is to always get something out to show. It might be shallow, but I feel like I’m missing out otherwise on opportunities to try new things. As such, I tend to have plans in place when I know I’m going to have trouble getting a post ready. Today happens to be one of those few moments when I really have nothing (they’re not hard to spot if you look for filler posts in my past).

Anyway, I plan to get back on track tomorrow with Sakurada Reset. Hopefully it all works out.