Double Decker! Doug and Kirill Episode 12: Super soldiers

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Travis asks Max to stay

Wow, this series certainly got grim in its final act. It’s definitely a lot of new information to set up the last box, but I think it’s great that this series hinted at so many of its plot points in previous joke episodes. It definitely suits this show. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that there’s no point in guessing with this show. That being said, I still don’t buy the characters deaths. I’m looking forward to seeing how it all turns out.

Introduction of the genetically modified soldier

This episode dialed the sci-fi up to like 11 or something. I’m actually kind of fine with that. Still, it’s a lot to take in. It feels like there’s a vast history for Nikai that’s missing.

Kirill finds out that he's immune to Anthem

It’s not the grandest reveal, but I think finding out that Kirill is the only person immune to Anthem suits him. He’s always been a subtle guy, right?

Doctor sees everything from Zabel's camera

It’s hard to find the comedy moments in this episode, but I thought it was funny that everyone at SEVEN-O basically figures out the information Kirill is being told at exactly the same time.

The rocket doesn't work

Did I miss something with this rocket? It kind of popped up as a thing that the military was developing, and I’m overly suspicious that it’s setting up something for the final episode.

Bluff the military

The plan to free Kirill was cool, and it was great to see Doug come up with it after telling Kirill that he wouldn’t rescue him back when Kirill rescued Doug.

Doug reveals a special drug to defeat Cooper

I’m getting suspicious about this final scene. Sure, Valery’s appearance was a bit of a surprise, but I honestly think it would be more fun to see Doug’s plan come together. If Kirill and Doug manage to defeat Cooper without the Anthem or the drug made from Kirill’s antibodies, it would just seem like Valery only existed to keep Doug from using the Anthem.

Max worries about Doug using Anthem

Plus, I think the series is setting up some drama around Doug and Anthem. This random comment from Max suggests that Doug has attempted to use Anthem before with negative results, so it would make sense for him to use it to revive after being shot.

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Release the Spyce Episode 11: The apprentice retaliation

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Momo having some trouble focusing

It’s time for the final showdown, I suppose. This week’s episode certainly seemed to undo a lot of the drama from the previous episode, with Yuki’s survival being a fairly quick reveal. Project Gekkako’s looking more and more like the evil plan from Kingsman, since I’ve made that reference before. I guess we’ll see how everything turns out in the end.

Mei lingers over Fuu for some reason

Mei definitely made a strong case for herself as a double agent in this episode. The way she lingers over Fuu in this scene seems to indicate that she’s whispering something to her apprentice, and she clearly touches Goe’s restraint, which is later revealed to be loosened. It’s weird, though, since Fuu never gives away what Mei might have told her. The only explanation I can think of is that Mei revealed that she’s going to sacrifice herself in order to stop Tendou, and Fuu is trying to save her at the expense of the plan.

The master plan is to spray the brainwash gas

Given what we’ve already seen from Tendou’s experiment with the gas in a previous episode, I don’t see how this evil plan was supposed to be difficult to guess. Is this supposed to be surprising in any way?

Yuki makes it back

Yuki’s return isn’t particularly surprising, but it does make Mei’s betrayal more confusing. If we assume that Mei’s a double agent, then it would make sense for the mentor trio to know about it, which is why they were eliminated in the previous episode. Now that Yuki’s back, you’d think she’d tell everyone. I get the feeling that this is just so the audience doesn’t know what’s going on, and that would bug me if it’s really the case.

Tendou can't be stopped

At this point in the story, I would be much more impressed if Tendou turned out to be the true double agent. It doesn’t fit with the fact that Mei keeps trying to cozy up to her, but it would actually be cool if Tendou was revealed to be a Tsukikage agent who’s been in cover this entire time.

Theresia can't decide if she will be a traitor or not

I did like seeing Goe attempt to continue her mentor’s quest to befriend Theresia, but I still get the impression that Theresia is just a sideshow. Once again, Tendou’s attempt to kill Theresia after her fight is hard to believe, since we’ve already seen Yuki return from the dead. Maybe Hatsume shows up to stop her from bleeding out.

Mei is looking for information

Once again, Mei continues to come off as a double agent by probing for information from Tendou. It’s hard to believe she would go through this much effort if she truly betrayed her friends.

SSSS.Gridman Episode 11: Gridman awakens

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Akane stabs Yuuta

As we lead up to the final episode, I guess it’s time for some big reveals. That being said, I didn’t really care for the reveal in this episode. I’m much more interested in why Yuuta himself is important, so casually popping in the fact that the Yuuta we’ve known so far is actually Gridman seems like it doesn’t add much.

The phones are no longer working

I know it’s a relatively minor thing, but I do like the idea that the city is starting to fall apart now that Akane has destroyed the helper kaiju. We get to see a few flashes of this when Rikka visits the school as well.

Some familiar kaiju appear

With Akane out of commission, it was nice to see some of the past kaiju show up again to terrorize the city.

Anti confronts the group

I felt like this scene could have looked further into what Anti had become now that he wasn’t a kaiju. I mean, seeing him banter with the main cast isn’t bad, since it shows that certain parts of him haven’t changed. I guess I’m just missing the point.

Shou finds out that Yuuta is actually Gridman

Once again, this scene just seemed a bit strange to me. It makes sense for Shou to be upset after seeing Yuuta stabbed in front of him. Given that he’s just found out that Yuuta wasn’t even in control when it happened, he’s right to question Gridman. I just don’t see what we gain from it. Gridman just goes off and does his thing anyway.

Rikka's mom sees everything

I’m still curious to know why Yuuta’s so important to everything. It might be that he has a previous relationship with Akane that made him more difficult for her to suspect as Gridman. Given that the other Neon Genesis folks acknowledge Gridman as Yuuta, it seems like Gridman’s amnesia was intentional. The simple explanation is that Gridman needed to wipe his memory so he could convince Akane that he was actually Yuuta, but I’m hoping for a bit more than that.

Gridknight Calibur appears

The Gridknight and Gridman team battle was definitely cool, though.

Akane becomes the final kaiju

Wow, Alexis. Way to ruin the mood.

Irozuku Sekai no Ashita kara Episode 11: Time catches up

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What's an event?

Well, this episode introduces an interesting hurdle. Recent episodes have been hinting at the idea that Hitomi has a time limit to her stay in the past, but I wasn’t expecting an actual danger to her existence. Part of me wonders whether this intentionally adds too much drama to the series, but I think I can accept that it was becoming too difficult for Hitomi to go back without something extra to push her. I’m looking forward to seeing how bittersweet the ending is.

Hitomi feels the effects of the time gap

The whole idea of the time gap is actually quite intriguing. Based on the excerpt we get from Kohaku’s emails, it seems to be a manifestation of the self-correcting nature of time, but we don’t get too much more. It’s times like this one that I wish the series went a little bit deeper into how its magic works. I’m fine with the fact that the story focuses more on the romance part, but I just get that feeling.

Kohaku is worried about the sand

I’m actually curious what this scene is trying to get at. From a story perspective, I would have preferred if Kohaku had just acknowledged that she needed too much sand to gather alone before time ran out. However, this is a time travel anime, so I wouldn’t be surprised if this scene was meant to show that the timing of the typhoon is important for Hitomi’s return, given that a later scene shows that the typhoon brings a lot more sand to the beach.

Hitomi returns from the time gap asleep

Once again, I really do wonder why the time gap manifests itself in this way. I would have expected Hitomi to just return to the point where she disappeared without realizing what had happened, but she returns asleep.

Chigusa and Asagi react in different ways

I find myself relating more with Chigusa’s response to the fact that Hitomi is leaving. When hearing that Hitomi could be in danger, it would seem more important to focus on fixing the problem rather than dwelling on losing Hitomi. I guess Asagi was much closer to Hitomi, so it would be harder on her.

Hitomi finding it hard to part with Yuito

I did like this scene between Yuito and Hitomi in the end. I look forward to seeing what ends up happening with their relationship, since it definitely doesn’t look like it will end well.

Fall 2018 Grab Bag Week 11: Merc Storia, Akanesasu Shoujo

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Since I’ll be travelling today, I’m doing things a bit out of order.

Forna is very shocked

Merc Storia Episode 9

This show has had some surprisingly entertaining stories, even if I still think it’s a bit too childish. The story before this one, with the father who reconnects with his estranged daughter by interacting with his inner child was a nice, heartwarming story. I didn’t mind the story about the Divas either, but I personally would have preferred if the story went just a little bit further. Also, I’m glad the show managed to not be annoying when the characters randomly broke out into song.

Selena under pressure as a Diva

The part that I felt was missing was some kind of justification for Selena. The story doesn’t have the best message if she truly was as shallow as Voicia believed she was. The initial scene in this episode seemed to suggest that Selena felt pressured to take on that particular persona because of the expectations she faced as a Diva. Personally, I think that could have made more sense for the story.

Selena is afraid that Antel hates her

Other than that, I think the story worked as the typical mutual romance plagued with misunderstandings. Even if she didn’t end up doing much, I thought Forna was an incredibly entertaining character to watch, especially when she interacted with Selena.

The gang wonders if Asuka is okay

Akanesasu Shoujo Episode 10

It’s been a while since I talked about this show. Honestly, I haven’t really felt much for the show, so I’ve been slow to keep up with it. The individual stories for the side characters were okay for character growth, but I didn’t think the alternate realities were too intriguing. For example, the Wild West world could have looked into how we view justice, but most of that flew out the window the minute the judge was revealed to be a Clutter.

Chloe wonders if Asuka might be better off not moping

As the series builds towards its finale, the main story seems like it could be interesting. The loss of Seriousuka was kind of a bummer, but the whole thing with the King of Twilight might have something to it. Getting to see Seriousuka’s world was a nice way of seeing the stakes, and I’m curious about the fact that the twilight seems to freeze people in time. There might be some Kyuubey-esque grand plan behind it.

Takumi wishes to go back to his world

I think the funniest part of this episode is the fact that Takumi ends up having a more reasonable outlook than Asuka does.

The Emissary of Twilight reveals herself

Given that the Emissary of Twilight is revealed to be Asuka, I’m feeling good about my theory that the missing brother is the King. It bothers me that the Emissary is a child, though. It could indicate that the two siblings faced some trauma in their original world that led to them hatching a childish plot to change the world.

Seishun Buta Yarou wa Bunny Girl Senpai Episode 11: Kaede’s time to shine

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Reporters asking Mai about her boyfriend

Wow, this episode went straight from a heartwarming buildup for Kaede to a hardcore bombshell drop. I can’t even be upset about the sudden amnesia reveal because it actually makes a lot of sense in the context of the series. It’s not crazy for Kaede to want to shut everything out after her trauma, and that behavior can be amplified in this world by the Puberty Syndrome to block out all memories. I wonder if she’s been using the notebook she showed with her goals for the year as a way to remember important people.

Mai's boyfriend situation blows over

I’m a bit annoyed that the cliffhanger was used in the previous episode given how quickly it was defused in this episode. Of course, I liked seeing how Mai handled the situation, but it’s always frustrating on some level when a cliffhanger seems cheap.

Rio betrays Sakuta

Watching Mai and Sakuta talk over Sakuta’s interest in Shouko is nice and all, but seeing Rio get so fed up with Sakuta’s love problems that she texts Mai the details is just an amazing scene.

Kotomi is worried about Kaede

It’s not that much, but I did like Sakuta’s conversation with Kotomi about the classroom environment after Kaede left. I especially liked when she brought up the idea that the class felt triumphant when they drove out the girls who bullied Kaede as well. It speaks to a modern sense of justice that I always feel wary about.

Shouko checks in with Sakuta

This Shouko mystery is intriguing, so I’m kind of worried that it won’t get resolved before the end of the season. There’s supposed to be a movie following this series, right? It’s definitely suspicious that Shouko is conveniently sick when the older Shouko was supposed to have met up with Sakuta.

Marks appear on Kaede after answering the phone

Well, that can’t be good.

Kaede makes it outside

Kaede makes it outside sooner than I expected, but what can I say? This was a great scene.

Kaede has no memories

I honestly didn’t see that coming.

Golden Kamuy Episode 22: Prison break of epic proportions

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Salmon is very important

The chaos of this episode sums up this series pretty nicely. To be fair, it wasn’t hard to guess that the mission to meet Nopperabu would go awry, but there was no way I could have imagined how crazy it got. I’m looking forward to seeing how the dust will settle, since this episode certainly hinted at some possible tragedies in our future.

Hijikata helps with the chitatap

When all is said and done, this is still a solid cooking show. Watching Hijikata join in on the chitatap preparation was hilarious.

Inkarmat is unsure how to interpret her fortunes

I like this scene from Inkarmat a lot, explaining how she has come to doubt her fortunes and why that gives her hope. I truly hope that she’s right, even if the fact that this is anime makes me suspect a more grim ending where all of her fortunes end up coming true.

The plan starts getting complicated

The way this heist was set up was really cool. I’m totally okay with an early mishap foreshadowing how far the plan goes off the rails. I mean, I suspect that the “mistake” was ultimately intentional, but it was fun nonetheless.

Hijikata roams around in the background

I’m curious to see how Hijikata factors into everything, since he has remained mysterious this entire time.

Asirpa is taken to the real Nopperabu

I’d like to see Asirpa meet Nopperabu in the next episode. It feels like the series has been building up to this moment a lot, and it would be a good climax for the season. Plus, it would suit the tone of this series to have the initial plan fail spectacularly but still allow Asirpa to succeed in her own way.

The 7th shows up

Having the 7th show up was fairly far into left field, but it’s a nice addition to the chaos. Finally, everything seems to be coming together.

Double Decker! Doug and Kirill Episode 11: Betrayal everywhere

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Kirill lost in thought

Once again, I was waiting for the punch line to come in this episode and it never did. I still enjoy seeing the jokes peppered in, but this series got surprisingly serious in the end (even if it felt a bit rushed). Also, the show got a bit weird with the whole thing about the second sun. That being said, I’m pretty convinced that a punch line is coming, so I guess we’ll have to see.

Travis is nervous

I’m wasn’t able to get a good read on it, but Travis seemed strangely nervous in this episode. Sure, it’s not all that strange for him, but the episode seemed to suggest a deeper connection between him and Kirill.

Everyone wants to be in the military

Watching everyone talk about how great life is for the military while Kirill mulls over his decision to join was hilarious.

Kirill and Valery escape Nikai

I know there was a hint back in the episode with the drunk guy, but this Nikai thing seemed to come out of nowhere. Is it just another aspect of the futuristic setting? Kirill doesn’t seem to be particularly special, even if Cooper keeps saying it.

Reminder about who these guys are

It’s so nice that this series just understands how much I remember about the side characters.

Doug is surprised at Kirill's patience

This is a bit of a throwaway line, but I really liked it because Doug is absolutely right. Kirill is definitely the type of person to impulsively rush in without waiting for backup.

Yuri sacrifices herself

A major character death doesn’t fit the tone of this series, but Yuri’s “final” moments were still pretty sad. It was a nice sacrifice from her despite being a robot.

The ethics of robot data are rough

This is the most random conversation, but it’s kind of interesting. I’m surprised that a world like this one would go so far as to consider the ethical implications of copying a robot’s data. I like what Max says about the backup being a fundamentally different person from Yuri, even if they had it.

Zabel is betrayed

The betrayal from B in the end was cool to see. To be fair, he seems like a more appropriate main antagonist than Zabel did. The reveal that B was Cooper was also set up well. In an earlier scene in the episode, B mentions that Kirill is “special”, mirroring Cooper’s own comment. I’m a little confused about Kirill’s actions at the end of the episode, though. What does he actually think the military can do differently than SEVEN-O to save Yuri?

Release the Spyce Episode 10: The big reveal

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Pretty suspicious scene

This episode definitely escalated quickly, but I honestly don’t believe it for a second. For what it’s worth, I thought that the handling of the traitor wasn’t bad. The series chose someone who was plausible as a traitor, but generally unassuming, which makes the betrayal scene work. I just personally have trouble believing it, so I’m seriously guessing that the series is building up towards a double agent scenario where everything is actually part of Tsukikage’s grand plan.

Byakko joins the fight

I know that Byakko has gone through her redemption and everything, but I had trouble with this scene. The girls were just talking about how they needed to keep the operation a secret between the seven of them to avoid a potential leak. Even if they trust Byakko now, she used to work for the enemy, so it seems incredibly dumb to tell her about the operation.

Momo asks what Yuki's plans are

Ahh, the classic. Talking about plans for the future right before the big fight.

Momo ferrets out the massive lies

I know it makes sense from a continuity perspective, but it’s super awkward to watch this woman pretending to be innocent when we’ve seen her multiple times as the ultimate big bad. But at least they’re finally using Momo’s lie detector powers again, right?

Mei betrays the group

I have to admit that Mei’s carefree attitude does fit well for a traitor. That being said, I still get the sense that having her as a true traitor doesn’t work well with the rest of the story. The way she blows Hatsume up seems way too overt to me, and it provides a mechanism to allow Hatsume to escape undetected. It’s also suspicious that she takes Fuu for herself and drinks the gel so readily despite the fact that they already isolated it from Theresia.

Momo watches helplessly as Yuki is struck down

Having Yuki’s defeat mirror her mentor’s defeat is annoying as repetition. But as I said from the start, I don’t really believe it. Most of this speculation is coming from the fact that I don’t want to see her die in the same way as her mentor, but I’m also suspicious of the way the camera pans above her at the end of the episode.

SSSS.Gridman Episode 10: A new knight is born

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How babies are made

As we get closer to the conclusion, this series has been getting a lot more interesting. I have my reservations about Anti’s arc as a whole, but the arrival of Gridknight in this episode was great. The fight scenes themselves were also nice, an added perk of the extended battle. The cliffhanger at the end was quite the surprise, but it could lead to some intriguing reveals if handled correctly.

The heroes start doubting their memories

This conversation about the reliability of the main characters’ memories is nice and all, but it felt a bit shallow. I like how the conversation flows from the previous episode, since the episode ended with Rikka saying she wants to tell the group something. We pick up right from that point, but I would have liked some more speculation.

Gridman remembers arriving in this world

This comment from Gridman makes me wonder if Yuuta’s going to end up being another secret part of Gridman. It would certainly give him a way out of the stab wound from the end of the episode.

Rampaging kaiju

It’s later revealed that this kaiju is a representation of Akane’s heart, so I like the fact that it sounds like it’s wailing throughout the fight.

Talking about the true nature of kaiju

Well, I certainly appreciate the expansion on the comment about Anti from the previous episode. He’s come a long way, and it’s quite a nice development that he’s a kaiju with a heart. I just have a hard time linking his past experiences, especially the ones with Rikka and Akane, shaped him.

The kaiju goes insane

I’m sure there’s something to the way this kaiju changes. It starts out weak and crying out, but this stronger form that breaks out is probably a hint at the ending of the episode.

Gridnight appears

This transformation was pretty cool. I’m still not clear on whether it’s supposed to be Anti’s true form or just another copy. The commentary from the Neon Genesis Squad seemed to indicate that Gridknight wasn’t a copy of Gridman, so it seems to be former as far as I can tell.

Akane figures everything out

Part of me wants to think there’s more to this scene. My initial impression was that Akane discovers that Yuuta himself isn’t Gridman, so she no longer needs him, but that doesn’t feel good enough as an explanation.