Steins;Gate 0 Episode 11: We did it? Yay?

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It feels kinda weird when the episode starts with a lot of tension and ends without a cliffhanger. It’s like the opposite of what I expect from this show. And if I didn’t know any better, I might have thought that this episode was some kind of ending. The world is “saved” and the Americans have returned home. Still, it was a fun episode and I’m definitely curious to see where it’s going. I definitely didn’t expect Maho to leave so suddenly.

Given that Rintarou immediately tells Maho about his time travel adventures, I’m curious what he actually meant with this statement. Based on the conversation, I suppose that he just expected Maho to want to save Kurisu. But my initial impression when Rintarou said this was that he might be afraid that Maho would blame him for “killing” Kurisu.

I love this line. More time travel shows should respect this fact.

For some reason, I find this statement hard to believe. Anyway, I really didn’t expect the laptop to actually get destroyed. I guess we need some false hope?

Awkward.

I’ve been super suspicious of Yuki, but the show is making such a point to focus on her mysterious injuries. It’s really making me doubt myself. The mysterious woman is totally her, right? Who else could it be?

Even if we ignore the fact that this is an anime and we’re only halfway through it, I don’t see why Rintarou doesn’t also agree with Suzuha. In this very timeline, he went back to try and save Kurisu only to see her die. He should know full well that his well-intentioned actions may very well be causing the event he’s trying to prevent.

I guess this is supposed to be suspicious, but what am I supposed to be seeing here?

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[OWLS June Blog Tour] Rokka no Yuusha: The Strongest Man in the World

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Alright, the holder of the “Shortest OWLS Post of May” title is here again with another (hopefully brief) post for June. This month’s topic is Pride, which sounds like another suspicious topic. I’m not arrogant, and I’m definitely not defensive, okay?

In honor of “Pride Month,” we will be discussing the word, “Pride” and its meaning. We will be exploring pop culture characters’ most satisfying and joyful achievements or skills that they possessed and whether or not these qualities could be seen as a positive or negative aspect in their personal lives and/or society.

Once again, I had a hard time with this topic. After much careful deliberation that definitely didn’t happen two days before the post was due, I decided to a look at the character I think best embodies how I think of my own sense of pride, Adlet Mayer from Rokka no Yuusha. Since the series is somewhat of a mystery series, I’ll say up front that I will be keeping this post light on spoilers.

If you’re not familiar with the story of Rokka no Yuusha, it’s set in a fantasy world and revolves around a legend of six chosen warriors destined to defeat the Demon God. When the heroes are assembled, they find that seven heroes, or Braves, have been chosen, and they must work together to find the fake.

As for Adlet, he has the honor of being one of the chosen Braves as well as the “Strongest Man in the World”…or so he says. Understandably, this proclamation puts a fairly large target on Adlet’s back, especially when combined with Adlet’s tendency to pick fights with powerful opponents.

The reason I like Adlet as a character is that he talks big but actually has the will and determination to deliver on his words. In my mind, pride is self-acknowledgment of skills that you possess, and arrogance is self-acknowledgment of skills you don’t possess (in a simplistic sense). I also feel like I’ve felt that sense of being everyone’s target from my school days.

While Adlet doesn’t have any special powers like the rest of the Braves, he uses his wit (and a lot of deception) to overcome his enemies. I don’t exactly have many physical challenges in my life, but I would say that Adlet’s approach is fairly similar to mine in that regard.

Any challenge comes with a certain level of uncertainty, and I try to move forward into the unknown with a sense of trust in myself to figure it out as I go along. I’ve always been a very indecisive person, so one of the ways I push myself out of that sense of paralysis is simply to tell myself that I’m sure I can handle it.

And as Adlet demonstrates, I’m not saying that I fly blindly without forethought. He carries with him a myriad of hidden weapons, such as smoke bombs or poison darts, to get himself out of any situation. I want to make sure I’m as ready as I can be, but I don’t want to let the unknown deter me.

That’s all I’ve got this time. I hope I made some semblance of the point I was going for in this post. And if you haven’t watched Rokka no Yuusha, I encourage you to give it a try. It’s a pretty fun take on the mystery genre that I enjoyed despite how the show ended up doing (“Rokka no Sales” is still funny).

And as before, be sure to check out the surroundings:

Yesterday, Naja wrote about Piano no Mori, a show I’ve been enjoying this season.

I’m sharing today with Jack over at The Aniwriter, so there’s probably already a post there since my posts always come out later in the day.

And up next is DynamicDylan over on the Youtube side.

Golden Kamuy Episode 11: Class is in session

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This week’s episode was a lot of fun to watch. The episode kinda shows its hand in the opening scene, but there are enough explosions and wacky jokes to carry it along regardless. Despite being at odds in this episode, I could totally see Ushijima working together with the main characters in the future. Also, Asirpa with that gun is frightening.

I thought it was weird that Ushijima and Shiraishi were both aggressively hitting on the proprietress when it initially happened. But in hindsight, I guess it’s part of the joke since they were supposed to be the ones who recognized a fellow prisoner.

Dick lecture…definitely not what I expected to see. This show really doesn’t take itself seriously.

I’m trying to figure out what to make of this. The opening scene shows a distinctly male body in the shadows, I’m presuming that the series wasn’t trying to be coy with this revelation.

In this old-fashioned setting, I find it really funny that Sugimoto brutally kicks someone he presumably saw as a woman. The Asirpa love is strong, I suppose.

I can’t believe this works.

That’s got to be really brutal to see in slow motion.

Caligula Episode 11: Hey, some actual answers

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This week’s episode was better than I was expecting, mostly because the show is starting to make some sense. I think I’m probably too far gone with this series to call it a redemption, though. There are still plenty of things that I thought were questionable.

Honestly, the “true Ritsu” reveal wasn’t the most surprising thing, but I respect how it was portrayed. I was thinking that it was weird to see the real life Ritsu speaking from the perspective of the Mobius Ritsu. However, I think the idea is that we’re hearing the thoughts from the Mobius Ritsu while the camera is focused on the real life Ritsu. They’re both technically in the scene, after all. I can get behind that.

This news report really bothered me. The fact that Shadow Knife used the Virtuadoll app should have been made clear when he first contracted the Astral Syndrome. His death does nothing to link him more to the app because it’s not like he was using the app while he was unconscious. So, I don’t see how this development is further proof of the connection between the app and Astral Syndrome. If anything, it’s just an indication of how severe the stakes are.

Oops, it looks like I spoke too soon last week when I concluded that Thorn was controlling Marie. I honestly hadn’t considered that she was secretly Wicked. I must not have been paying enough attention. Either way, I guess it’s a boss fight?

I’m still going to take a partial win for guessing that Ritsu imprinted on his psychiatrist. Given what we’ve learned about the real Ritsu, I think it’s pretty safe to say that the therapy sessions are a more likely explanation for the psychology interest in Mobius.

Hooray? Kensuke was a good guy after all? He seemed too easy as the traitor anyway.

Character background stories!

Given the way Thorn talks about Ichika, I suppose she’s someone who liked Ichika from a distance and was sad about her suicide.

Darn, I guess Aria’s not evil…

Also, I’m still not convinced about Ritsu as a main character yet. The real life Ritsu states that he has changed, but he’s still charging ahead on his own.

Darling in the FranXX Episode 21: That poor snake klaxosaur

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To be frank, I didn’t really have fun watching this episode. I don’t really have anything new to say this time. I think I can summarize by saying that nothing in this episode was particularly shocking enough to excite me. And the cliffhanger at the end just felt like bait. If next week’s episode is a time skip, I might lose it.

Oh boy, a doomsday countdown. That will make things more dramatic.

As more of the history of this world is revealed, I keep feeling like these revelations could have been set up better. I don’t really get the sense that these explanations necessarily fit because they feel like they could have been made up on the spot.

Take the 9’s as an example. Sure, it’s reasonable that they’re clones of Zero Two, but what part of their personality suggests that? It’s really just the horns. I would have preferred seeing some aspect of their personality that illustrates how Zero Two might have been if she hadn’t met Hiro.

These two are screaming for a bad ending.

Once again, Ikuno’s hair change is a development that appears without much setup. I suppose there might be something about their life force being tied to the Franxx, but I can’t really remember any mention of it.

I’m not sure I fully understand this conversation between the klaxosaur princess and Hiro. Is she just saying that Hiro has no obligation to fight for humanity? I’m pretty sure the entire planet is about to explode, so I don’t see why it’s not “his fight”.

Sigh…I was really hoping that the “power of friendship” wouldn’t be making an appearance.

Well, there’s plenty of story left to cover, so it would be difficult to convince me that Zero Two is dead. I’m guessing it’s more like her consciousness fused with the Strelizia Apath or something.

Hinamatsuri Episode 11: Massacred

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Is it wrong of me to want to focus on the Anzu part of the episode again? She’s just such a good, wholesome character. The “misinterpreted” yakuza piece is starting to feel a little bit overplayed with Nitta. Though, I will say that the point where everyone turned on him, even Hina, was pretty hilarious.

I’m sure this counts as character background…somehow.

I’d make a joke about modern journalism, but that feels too easy.

I feel like this is the series from Nitta’s perspective summed up pretty well.

I somewhat resent this idea that you need to experience being homeless to knock the bratty nature out of a kid, but it doesn’t really make Anzu any less as a character. Plus, I don’t think the series is really pushing that idea.

If only it were so easy.

I can’t disagree with this statement.

Oops.

Tada-kun wa Koi wo Shinai Episode 11: The decision is made

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I think this week’s episode was pretty good, but I still can’t get over my initial trouble getting a feel for Mitsuyoshi as a character. I guess the episode centered around how he came to terms with his feelings for Teresa in order to motivate himself, but the very nature of his personality made it difficult to understand where he started in relation to where he ended up. Also, many of the events in the episode seemed pretty clear (especially the thing about the photo being submitted to the contest).

Well done, Kaoru support.

This line from Mitsuyoshi was actually pretty sad to hear.

Using the older couple to give the message about expressing your feelings was pretty nice. I find it a bit hard to believe that the old man hadn’t expressed his feelings before, but it still works. I would have expected something more along the lines of saying he hadn’t said it in a long time.

I liked the use of the old video to trigger Mitsuyoshi’s realization. It was a nice throwback to a really good episode.

The line about going to see the rainbow after clearing the rain in Mitsuyoshi’s heart felt like a good one. Anyway, I could see this story going either way when it comes to a happy or bittersweet ending, so I don’t really know what to expect. I’m actually kinda cheering for the happy ending.

What are you doing there, Kaoru? That’s a pretty committed stalker.

Steins;Gate 0 Episode 10: And the danger is back

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This week’s episode had a lot of good moments in it, but it largely felt like a lull with the lighthearted scenes. It ramped up really hard in the end when Maho tells Rintarou about the laptop. That tone shift was pretty massive and it really hit me hard when I was watching it. Overall, it was a pretty fun episode, and I suppose the race is on.

I see Amadeus is back at playing Cupid again.


This is probably the cutest impression of Sergeant Hartman I’ve ever seen. Well played. This scene was 100% on point.

I actually really like the way Maho relates herself to Salieri. It fits really well with her inferiority complex and justifies the Amadeus name more. I just didn’t like that the episode opened with her talking about Salieri only to have her explain it more to Rintarou later. It just seemed repetitive.

Oh hey, a random date with Maho.

There’s something really cool about the way Rintarou brings his perspective in here. Maho’s thought about saving Kurisu is a pretty common idea, but Rintarou has the unique position of knowing how it will fail.

Rintarou’s reaction here was great. You could really feel the desperation.

Spring 2018 Grab Bag Week 10: Grancrest Senki

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I thought we were in the clear when we finally got a resolution to the big war a couple of episodes back. Theo was successfully crowned Emperor of a united force, and yet we’ve been in the weirdest tangent for the past two episodes. It was almost like the series suddenly remembered that Aishela and Priscilla existed and decided to go straight into resolving their stories.

I had to check on this, but it turns out the crazy witch lady whose name I’ve already forgotten also used a broom. So, giving Siluca a broom to replace her wand isn’t totally ridiculous.

Classic example of papal hypocrisy. We can’t allow anyone to control all of the Crests, so give them all to me!

Honestly, Priscilla’s eyes looked so dead in these scenes, I wouldn’t have been surprised if she unleashed some crazy Chaos monster.

I really didn’t feel much for Priscilla’s death. Part of the reason is that I was expecting her to somehow come back to life (to fulfill the Jesus allegory). But more so, I didn’t think much of her as a character. She provided some pretty standard religious lines and resurrected Aishela twice. Am I just dead inside?

Golden Kamuy Episode 10: These bears are doing work

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This week’s episode was way funnier than it should have been. It really played the surprise factor well to make scene more comical than they should have been. The reveal in this episode also makes things interesting. It almost sounds like a shortcut for the main characters, but I imagine it won’t be so simple.

The bears in this series are really doing a lot of work.

I quite liked Tanigaki’s plan of using the bear’s prey to lure it into attacking his pursuers. It was pretty cool overall, and it just kinda worked. There was no real fluff in the plan or execution. He took advantage of his adversaries’ misinformation and won.

Yeesh, Mishima’s death was almost a jump scare. I know we need to get Tanigaki away from Tsurumi, but that’s a little harsh.

The impromptu nature of this scene makes it way funnier. I really liked it.

The way Sugimoto’s suspicions towards Kiroranke are built was pretty entertaining. They make Kiroranke an incredibly ambiguous character. Asirpa’s trust in him makes him seem like he’d be okay, but Sugimoto’s cautious nature pokes holes of doubt in those assumptions.

I feel like I might have suspected this at some point, but I don’t think I would have called it. With the benefit of hindsight, it should have been obvious, but I wasn’t really considering it. Anyway, it should be interesting. Based on what we’ve heard about Nopperabo so far, he doesn’t seem like the type to just give Asirpa the win so easily.

Murder hotel? I’m on board. Are we getting more characters who are competing for the gold?