Akanesasu Shoujo Review: A world of possibilities

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The girls talk about a ritual to enter a new world

Hey, who knew that radios were supposed to be cool? I suppose if I could use a radio to travel across dimensions, I’d be a lot more into it as well. That’s what we have for ourselves with this series. The main character, Asuka Tsuchimiya, is the leader of the Crystal Radio Club along with four of her classmates. Though they typically just goof around, the girls learn about a ritual, the Ritual at 4:44, that they can perform with a radio. It starts out as harmless fun, but the main characters soon find out that the ritual actually works when it sends them to a parallel world.

Time to roll the dice

In the other world, the girls are surprised to find Asuka, or at least another version of her from a different world. From there, the stage is set. Each arc sees the girls entering a new world, a different possible future for Earth based on the actions of humanity. In these worlds, each girl is confronted with her own weaknesses, Persona-style, and overcomes them to become an Equalizer to fight against the mythical King of Twilight.

Yuu wonders if they've all gone crazy

As an extra note, the ending for this series gets really weird. Despite being an original series, it’s ultimately inconclusive, and the series leaves off without getting into the nature of the King of Twilight, who acts as the main antagonist. Maybe it’s wrong for me to expect that sort of thing, since the series is supposed to be paired with a mobile game, but I would have at least liked to have some explanation for the multiverse scenario.

Marriage is mandatory in this world

Much of the series relies on the appeal of the alternate timelines that the girls visit. That aspect was pretty big for me, since it was the main thing I was curious about while I was watching. Personally, I had a bit of a problem with those worlds, as they didn’t seem particularly creative to me. I mean, the generic “Western” setting alone felt the laziest to me. I did like how the worlds brought out different aspects of the girls. For example, the pretty girl with the shy personality dreams of being a hero, which seemed interesting.

Seriousuka fights

From the animation side, I didn’t have a particularly strong opinion. For the most part, it looked fine. For the record, though, the battles are pretty heavily CGI, if that bothers you.

In summary, I think my overall impression of this series was that it “wasn’t for me”, despite having a lot of potential with the things I tend to like. It wasn’t all that bad, but I did get the feeling that I was kind of forcing myself to watch it as time went on. I did like Seriousuka, though.

Overall Score: 6/10

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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.

Fall 2018 Grab Bag Week 3: Akanesasu Shoujo, Ken en Ken

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I couldn’t decide which of these shows to talk about today, so I’m doing both of them. They each had their own issues, so it was hard for me to decide which one I liked more than the other.

Akanesasu Shoujo Episode 3

After the strange departure that was episode 2, this week’s episode concludes that story by going back to the battles of the first episode. I think that this kind of show could be pretty interesting, but I really hope this series does something better with the parallel worlds that get visited. The way the story resolved in this episode felt mostly underwhelming to me, and I intend to explain why I say that. Also, I wonder if the excessive jargon in this series will get old.

The comedy in this episode was actually good, in my opinion. Watching the non-Nana girls get forced to sleep outside because they didn’t get to merge with their parallel selves was funny. I also had no problem with the joke that Nana refused to go through with marriage because of what the marriage would do to her name.

We also finally get an explanation from Seriousuka about what she’s doing, which was fairly interesting. I’m going to be really shocked if the King of Twilight doesn’t eventually turn out to be the collective Asukas’ missing brother. It’s way too suspicious that he disappears in multiple worlds. Please don’t make him a captive…I’d be annoyed to see that.

Hmm, Nana breaks away from her arranged marriage to enter the embrace of her friend, Asuka. Sounds like…

The fact that the groom was the Clutter was depressingly obvious. It also raised a lot of questions for me. Do the Clutters always infest the world gradually by assuming an identity? If so, what exactly was the endgame for this Clutter? Was he going to gain some kind of political influence by marrying Nana?

Uhh, this is neat and all, but how is this going to work out if they all have to use Seriousuka’s Walkman? Are they each going to buy their own cassette player?

Ken en Ken Episode 3

This series still has the weirdest pacing. The first episode seemed like it was trying to rush through multiple stories at once, but the second episode screeches to a halt to show an extended flashback. I honestly wonder if the second episode would have worked better as an opener. Anyway, I guess things are back on track with this third episode, but I’m still not too confident I get where things are going.

I don’t really get why Zhao gets lauded as a genius later in the episode after he repurposes a construct that his predecessor was working on.

I really don’t understand this scene. Is it trying to say that this food wasn’t in the backpack? If so, where did it come from? There’s no way Yin would react this way if she recognized it as part of the stuff stored in the scroll. Can Yun just make infinite food or something?

Me: Magic hands? Where did those come from?

The show: Don’t worry about it. It’s just more Mujia stuff.

Ning’s crisis of conscience is actually quite interesting. I like the idea that Yin contributes to it with her over-protective and self-sacrificial natures. Still, I find it really weird that it’s literally given away in the OP that Ning will betray Yin and get lost in her bloodlust. I know OPs have a reputation of spoiling the show, but this one is way too obvious.

Akanesasu Shoujo First Impressions (1-2): Cute girls in alternate worlds

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This series has a surprisingly intriguing premise. The main characters travel through parallel worlds using a radio, meeting alternate versions of themselves or experiencing other possible lives. The first episode did a pretty good job of setting up the premise, but it definitely felt like I was watching a completely different show in the second episode. Honestly, I kind of liked the action in the first episode, so I’m not sure how to feel about this. The alternate worlds thing is really interesting, but the choice of world kind of isn’t. The episode also spends more time focusing on how the character Nana reacts to the new world instead of exploring how the world as a whole has shifted because of the change in history (which is what I would prefer to see).

This whole fortuneteller thing is a bit lame, but I guess it introduces a main antagonist for the series. Based on appearances, she looks similar to Yuu, so I’m assuming she’s her doppleganger. Hopefully, she’s here for more than acting as an agent of chaos.

I like the portrayal of the ritual in the second episode, since it makes it look like most of the girls stay in the same world. It gives the sense that Nana has somehow gotten stuck in a different world, which gives her conversation with the alternate versions of her friends a lot more weight. And in the end, the episode switches it up by revealing that everyone’s in the alternate world.

This is kind of a weird world. I get that it’s supposed to be a world that’s close to the girls’ home world, but it still feels too underwhelming in comparison to the first episode. Seriousuka seems to be from a world that has forced her to become a warrior, which is very different from the more social/cultural differences in this episode’s world.

I was probably way too interested in seeing all of the parallel timeline explanations in this episode. I just have so many questions. What happens to this world’s Nana while MC Nana is here? Does she just black out for that entire time? Also, I’m curious why no one disappeared in the first episode. Is the golden world some kind of interdimensional limbo that doesn’t follow the rule of merging whoever “goes first”?

I do like the fact that Nana’s character background plays into the unique mechanic of this alternate world. Her family troubles make her the worst fit in a world where marriage is mandatory, and the concepts play well together. That part all makes sense. It’s her change of heart in the end that really doesn’t make sense. Deciding to stay with the famous guy indicates a shallow nature that directly conflicts with this argument.

There’s no way this guy is going to be normal…

I wonder if I’m overthinking the conversation between the Asukas about Kyohei. The MC Asuka specifies that Kyohei disappears when she was six, but Seriousuka’s response seems a lot more vague. “It happened in my world too” could mean that some other unspecified thing happened to her Kyohei. Maybe it’s nothing…