Fall 2017 Grab Bag: Sangatsu no Lion, Mahou Tsukai no Yome, and Animegataris

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I kinda want to put together a weekly runthrough of the other shows I’m watching. I probably won’t have too much to say about each of them, so I’m thinking it would be better if I just did a single post.

3-gatsu no Lion S2 Episode 1

It feels good to have this show back (especially given that I’ve read the manga for this season mwahahaha). This season pretty much starts where the previous season left off, with Rei teaching shogi to the members of the new Shogi/Science Club. It’s nice to see Rei finally making some school friends closer to his age.

When it shifts back into the pro shogi scene, it’s an interesting look into how the high-tiered players tempers themselves during the game to gain any possible edge. Overall, the episode looked really good, and I have to admit that the opening animation was pretty nice visually.

Mahou Tsukai no Yome Episode 2

Well, this series is still nice and warm. This week’s episode kinda goes more into the magic of this world. I had forgotten this part. Personally, I’ve always found the idea of splitting magic and sorcery to be unnecessarily confusing, but I don’t remember it being a big deal in this show. I think it’s just that the terms are used too interchangeably in media.

As a final point, I really liked the episode, but I found the last scene to be a bit forced as a cliffhanger. The preceding scene would have been fine as a stopping point, but it seemed more like Elias intentionally started the next task just to force some tension in the ending. But what can you do?

Animegataris

Honestly, I’ve been having way more fun watching this series than I was expecting. The basic premise of an anime club is pretty standard, but the references scattered within the show are insane. I’ve been having a good time figuring each one out. Past that, the characters so far seem to cover a decent spread of anime fandom. I think the conversations so far might be interesting to many bloggers I know because they’re the kinds of topics I see discussed in posts a lot.

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Anime Review: 3-gatsu no Lion

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I want to try to be better about reviewing the series I don’t cover in a season (since I watch so many), and this series happens to be the first one to finish that I haven’t really written about previously. Glad there’s a second season announced for this series. I’m definitely looking forward to it!

The story follows Rei Kiriyama, a shogi player who qualified as a professional in middle school, which is a rare accomplishment that earns him the attention of the shogi world. Unable to deal with the pressure, Rei isolates himself from the people around him, leaving his foster family to live on his own supported by his shogi career. The story pretty much starts with a lot of introduction for Rei and some of the major characters, such that the shogi aspect of the show is sometimes not even in an episode.

But it does eventually reach a point where Rei’s interactions with the professional shogi scene are brought into focus. And I’m not sure how many share this opinion, but I personally think the shogi parts of the show are the best parts. Even though the series doesn’t have the same tone, it brings me back to when I was watching Hikaru no Go. I also didn’t personally find the technical aspect of the shogi conversations to be overbearing.

The characters in this show are probably my favorite part. I found Rei to be very relatable, and I sympathized specifically with his inability to define his own passions in life. I know at around that age, I was having similar troubles figuring out what I really wanted to do and feeling the pressures of other people pushing me in certain directions that I didn’t necessarily know if I liked. And I would hazard a guess that most people have felt a similar feeling of being lost in the world, unsure of where to head. But aside from Rei, I thought pretty much every character was memorable. They each have their own motivations, strengths, and weaknesses, and I never got the sense that any particular character was useless. I think the only exception for me was the cats…really couldn’t stand those two.

Music is always a big selling point for me and this series really delivers on it. The first pair of themes are both done by Bump of Chicken, a band I’ve really liked since playing Tales of the Abyss. I’m less of a fan of the second opening song, but I really like the second ending song as well. But even if you ignore the themes, the soundtrack for this series is also incredible. It’s hard to describes, but the songs gave me a sense of longing as I listen that really fit the show.

Overall Score: 9/10