Tamayura: Hitotose – Episode 2

Fu has now lived in Takehara for a month and is hanging out with her childhood friends Kaoru, Norie, and Maon. We also meet a couple other characters, including their odd teacher, a nice man in a nearby photo shop, and Fu’s grandmother, who owns a cafe in town. Kaoru then says she’s going to be alone the next night because everyone is busy, so Fu suggests a sleepover to keep her company. We finally meet Kaoru’s older sister Sayomi, who snuck out of what she was doing to spend the night with them as well.

Back together again

Back together again

Another good episode, I thought. Again, pretty slow paced, so if you don’t like episodes that kinda laze along, you may not like this series, but I think it’s a good pace for this show. We finally get to see what Fu’s childhood friends are like. Kaoru is kind of the leader and most mature. Norie is extremely excitable and hyper. Meanwhile Maon is silent, but will speak up when she wants to. She also often responds by whistling.

So this episode was mostly about the four friends catching up and introducing some of the other side characters in the show. We got a hint of this in the first episode, but we hear more about “tamayura,” which are flicks of light that show up on a picture, and how Fu enjoys taking pictures with them on it. Once again, I’m looking forward to seeing more from this show.

Working'!! – Episode 2

Aoi is frustrated at Souta for not telling her that she’s cute, even though she’s not much bigger than Poplar. As a result, she decides to focus her attention on Hiroomi instead, deciding to stalk him (with Poplar’s help) to find out what he’s so secretive about. Hiroomi, however, uses this as a chance to freak Aoi and Poplar out every chance he gets. Meanwhile, Poplar tries to talk up Mahiru to Souta. Jun harasses Poplar again to take out his frustrations about Yachiyo and Poplar wants to take revenge.

We aren't stalking you. For realz we aren't!

We aren't stalking you. For realz we aren't!

This was a rather disjointed episode that had a ton of stuff going on. I realize that’s not uncommon for 4-koma based series but it seemed to be that way more so than usual this time. The main threads were Poplar trying to help Souta and Mahiru together and Aoi seeking attention from various people.

I’m not sure if all the Aoi stuff is really going anywhere other than her being cute or annoying, depending on her point of view. The Mahiru/Souta thing is where it’s at, but, of course, Souta is still focused on Poplar because she’s so cute, and because Mahiru still can’t get over her punching guys.  Overall this was an OK episode I guess, but it didn’t seem to progress the plot very much.

Last Exile: Fam, the Silver Wing – Episode 1

This Last Exile sequel, or spin off, or whatever it is, is, after Shana, the 2nd series I’m most looking forward to watching. The original Last Exile was probably one of the first five anime series I ever watched, and probably one of the first five I ever bought (back in the days when anime series came on 7 discs!). Needless to say it’s one of my favorite series, so I have very high expectations for this show as well.

Fam, and her co-pilot Giselle lead an Sky Pirate attack on a ship, capturing it. Back at the base, they run into Dio (!!), who is as lazy as usual. Meanwhile, two rival nations, Turan and Ades have agreed to sign a peace treaty. However, the treaty is a ruse by Ades in order to attack the Turan fleet, which has stood down in preparation for the treaty. Fam and the pirates then decide to save the princesses of Turan…in exchange for their flagship.

Hey look! It's Dio! What..what?

Hey look! It's Dio! What..what?

I was under the impression that the amount of time that had passed between the two series was more, but I guess not with Dio not only alive (apparently surviving the events from the end of the first series) but pretty much the same age. Meanwhile, it looks like this series is taking place on earth, though with a similar feeling with the two nations going to war against each other. The Sky Pirates are essentially acting the part of the Sylvania. So far there isn’t an overwhelming controlling organization like the Guild yet, at least that’s been revealed.

I’m interested in knowing the relationship between Earth and Prester. Presumably the people who lived on Prester and Earth were separated for quite a long time, which makes it interesting that they should have similar technology, unless everyone who is on Earth now came from Prester (though it seems like these nations have existed for quite a while). I guess that was just something nagging at me.  Also, since we’ve seen Dio, does that mean we’ll see (or at least hear about) any of the other original characters at some point?

Shakugan no Shana III – Episode 1

It’s finally here…the series I have been waiting four years for (yes, it’s been that long). The final season of Shakugan no Shana. The first season was one of the early anime series I watched, and of course I blogged the second season and the OVA. Now it’s time for Shakugan no Shana III (or Final). I hope this ends up being worth the four years I’ve been waiting to see it…

Shana is fighting a horde of Rinne when the Crimson Denizen appears and…is Yuji. We then flash back to the end of the 2nd season when it appeared Yuji and chosen Shana. Instead, he vanished as if he ran out of power of existence, though Yoshida still remembers him. However, Shana and the other flame hazes don’t believe he’s gone and think his disappearance is part of a major plot by the Bal Masqué. Meanwhile, Yuji, apparently trapped in the Midnight Lost Child, tells Silver that he wants to “change it” and takes his place as the leader of the Bal Masqué.

But Yugi...what about our threesome!?

But Yugi...what about our threesome!?

So…something happened to Yuji, probably caused by the Bal Masqué, that caused him to become somehow trapped inside the Midnight Lost Child. There he is having a conversation with Silver about the cycle of Flame Hazes and Crimson Denizens, and then at the end says that he wants to “change it.” Presumably this means he wants to change the cycle of never-ending battle between the two sides, though I’m not really sure how Yuji would think this would be accomplished by becoming head of the Bal Masqué.

Otherwise, this episode was kind of a catchup. We are reminded that Satou wants to work for Outlaw now, and that Tanaka and Ogata are an item. It also appears like we’re about to be introduced to yet another Flame Haze: Sophie Sawallisch. One other item of note is that Shana is learning to use her Flame Haze powers much more effectively, which I’m sure will come in handy later.

A fairly interesting, and plot twisting, first episode of the third season here. Interested where this series will go now that it looks like Shana will have to fight Yuji instead of be his guide.

Tamayura: Hitotose – Episode 1

Tamayura: Hitotose is the only show from the fall season that isn’t a sequel or spinoff of a show that I hadn’t already seen. I questioned whether I should do a fourth show, but I thought at least one show that was different might be good, and this one looked the most interesting, so here we go.

Fu is a girl who likes photography. However, her father, who taught it to her, tragically died  a few years prior and she stopped taking photos. Now, in her final years of middle school, she spends most of her time with her best friend Chihiro, who is overly sensitive to anything that might remind Fu of her lost father. When she gets home, she finds that her little brother Kou was bug out their father’s old photobook and decides to take up photography again. She then decides she wants to return to her childhood home at Takehara to go to high school.

Fu takes up her old hobby

Fu takes up her old hobby

If the first episode is any indication, this looks like a serious I’ll really enjoy. I was kinda sad that Fu and Chihiro’s friendship only really lasted the first episode (at least on screen) because I thought they were excellent together, and how Chihiro was always worried about Fu was kinda touching. But now Fu enters a new chapters of her life as she returns to her childhood home, where her childhood friends, whom she hasn’t seen in years, still live.

This is a pretty easy going show so far, though certainly not lacking in emotional impact. I guess my only worry is that it’ll run out of steam before the end, but we’ll see I guess.

Working'!! – Episode 1

This is Working’!! (gotta love how the Japanese decide to differentiate their different anime seasons sometime), the 2nd season of this show. I found the first season to be overall OK, though it sometimes dragged. There seemed to be a lot of Souta and Mahiru action, some of it repetition, and not nearly enough Poplar action. Hopefully some of that change in this season.

Souta’s “small thing” fetish wrecks complete havoc as he first upsets Poplar by calling her cute and tiny, then makes things worse when he compares her to bug (and tells Mahiru that she’s “less than a bug”), which ends up making her sulk for the rest of the episode. Hiroomi and Jun then try to trick Poplar by telling her that she can get taller by eating dry lizards, something which Jun finally tells her is a lie before actually goes and tries it.

Mahiru gets the worst of Souta and his tiny fetish

Mahiru gets the worst of Souta and his tiny fetish

This episodes starts by essentially letting us know again that, out of everyone’s fetishes and oddities, it may very well be Souta who is the most extreme in his. He clearly looses himself when it comes to small things, such as saying that Poplar is the same thing as a bug, which he means to mean that the bug is just as important as her, but obviously sounds like the opposite.

Meanwhile, Mahiru seems to be doing at least marginally better in not punching. She resisted punching Hiroomi at one point, and it’s hard to blame her for clobbering Souta for what he said to her.

Catching up on Fall Season

Now that I’ve fully caught up on shows from the Summer season, I want to catch up on shows from the Fall season. There are three shows on my definite watch list here: Shakugan no Shana III (which is till ongoing), Last Exile: The Silver Wing (also still ongoing), and Working’!!. I think i’m also throwing in the series Tamayura: Hitotose just for the hell of it as well.

I’ll try to increase my pace from one episode to two a day so that I can hopefully get through these series before the end of February instead of the middle of March, which is what I’d be looking at otherwise. That also will hopefully give me time to try to squeeze in a couple winter shows before the Spring shows start in April, assuming I’m still going at it by then.

Mayo Chiki! – Episode 13 [END]

Nakuru drops by to visit Kinjiro’s house needing advice. However, what she needs advice on apparently entails asking Kinjiro out on a date, which surprisingly he consents to (even if half-hearted). During the date, she explains a situation where she tells him that a boy confessed to her, and she was wondering why, and wondered if her larger bust might be the reason. She admits she has a complex over her large breasts and won’t be able to concentrate on her BL novels until she knows that boys won’t keep asking her out over them. So she smashes her boobs against Kinjiro to “prove” that he won’t go bonkers over them. However, this also makes Nakuru find Kinjiro “cooler”…

This wasn't really important to the story, but I was still LOLing

This wasn't really important to the story, but I was still LOLing

I’m trying to figure out why the writers made this, of all things, the final episode to the story, unless they pretty much already have a second season planned and wanted to use this as a sort of bridge to it. Either that or they had some money left but ran out of material after episode 12 and were like “what the hell, let’s make another episode.” It’s not this episode was bad in of itself, I just found it curious that they made this the last one.

Overall, this was a so-so series. There were some good parts to it, but there were an awful lot of parts that just kind of grated. It got tiring watching Kanade torturing Kinjiro in an attempt to “cure” him at times. The best part of the series always involved the interaction between Kinjiro and Subaru and between Kinjiro and Usami. Most everything else was just kind of boring and/or annoying I thought.

If there is a second season, I’d have to think about whether to watch it. It may depend on what else is airing at the time. This wasn’t so bad that I’d say I don’t want to watch any more ever, but it’s not good enough that I would definitely watch a second season either.

No. 6 – Episode 11 [END]

The Holy Day celebrations start in No. 6, but the parasite bees start attacking everyone in sight. Meanwhile, Safu explains to Nezumi and Shion that No. 6 used her as a medium to access Elyurias. However, this was a trap by Elyurias, who has Nezumi destroy the main computer. However, Safu decides to stay behind. Nezumi and Shion try to escape, but Nezumi gets shot. Shion tries to drag him out, but gets shot in the chest and is killed, with Nezumi somehow getting them back to where Inukashi and Rikiga are waiting for them. However, devastated by Shion’s death, Nezumi refuses to leave, so Inukashi and Rikiga leave without him.

Meanwhile, all the bees that appeared from No. 6 citizens form into giant tornadoes when Elyurias, now fully freed, flies over and start destroying No. 6’s walls. Safu-Elyurias then returns to the facility, transforms into her true form (a giant glittering bee) and resurrects Shion.

Elyurias' true form: a giant bee. ZOMG RUN!

Elyurias' true form: a giant bee. ZOMG RUN!

I guess that was an OK ending. Safu “lived” but only in the sense that she’s now Elyurias and is essentially immortal. Meanwhile, we never really learned what Elyurias was other than some sort of powerful being. Clearly the rulers of No. 6 were in way over their heads in trying to harness Elyurias’ power.

We also never got a complete description of what the bees were or what their purpose was, but as far as I could tell they were the doing of Elyurias. No. 6 was obviously aware of them, and perhaps even controlling them to some extent in their experiments to unleash Elyurias, but clearly the bees were used as a trap by Elyurias to punish No. 6 and pretty much wipe it out (though clearly, many people in the city still survived). Why the bees decided to attack some people and not others…I don’t really know.

In a sense, at the end, both Nezumi and Shion got their wishes. Elyurias brought the walls down, much like what Shion wanted, but No. 6 took a beating like what Nezumi wanted, and most likely most of the people in charge of it were wiped out by the bees, and even if they weren’t, they’re not going to be able to pull off the “we’re a great utopia!” thing anymore.

In the end, I suppose this was a decent ending to the series. I think it could have been better – I would have loved if Safu had survived as herself – but it certainly could have been worse too. I think the series as a whole was overall pretty good. I never necessarily like major plot points not entirely explained, like the bees, but I guess I can live with it. The series is probably good enough that I would recommend it to someone who is looking for something to watch, but I don’t know if I’d tell them to put down everything they’re currently watching to go watch this.

Mayo Chiki! – Episode 12

Kinjiro, knocked out by Subaru’s kiss at the end of the last episode, is found by Usami, who agrees to take him to the graveyard where Subaru’s mother is buried, and sure enough Kinjiro finds her there. Subaru doesn’t want to go back home yet so the pair stay the night at the inn. The next day of school Kanade tells Kinjiro that Subaru has transferred to another school. However, Subaru’s alter-ego, Punyuru, has decided to join the school. Kinjiro then enlists the help of the two rival Subaru fan clubs at the school to start rallying support to reinstate Subaru as a butler, which apparently works.

Only Kinjiro would have a problem with this

Only Kinjiro would have a problem with this

Well, this was a pretty decent episode. As I kind of expected, we wrapped up the “Subaru becoming a butler again” thing in one episode and not two, and Subaru wasn’t even outed, though I have to agree with Usami wondering how people aren’t getting that Subaru and Punyuru are the same person. One can only stretch that so far, I think, unless they’re just feigning it somehow.

I guess this leaves open how this series will end. I think this episode would have been a good conclusion, but apparently the writers have something else in mind. Oh, and Kinjiro is your typical male lead who just doesn’t get it.