Hello, and welcome to this week's edition of Annotated Anime, where the only question you have to ask is "Does It Start"? And our answer is, as every week, "Yes. Yes, it does."
With the summer season finally winding down we find ourselves just a tad bit light on the immediate recap offerings, with coverage of The Ambition of Nobuna Oda, Gundam AGE, A Little Sister Walks Among Us, Space Bros., Accel World, Muv-Luv Alternative, Dog Days Prime, Tari Tari, and Eureka Seven AO.
Don't fret, though, dear readers, we haven't dropped or forgotten your favorite shows! In fact, we're preparing our Final Impressions of them as this post goes live! Look for them soon, including ones for Moyashimon Returns, Hyouka, Yuru Yuri, and Humanity Has Declined!
Muv-Luv Alternative - Total Eclipse Episode 12
Yui and generic Corporal are now face to face with an incoming Tank-class BETA. RUH OH. Good thing generic Corporal as the common sense to hop in a fork lift and pin the BETA. This gives Yui time to pull out a sniper rifle and cap the alien. They cover the windows, move boxes in front of every conceivable area and only leave a tiny space for their hopeful escape. They're also prepared to use their weapon on any Ruskie that stops them from destroying the experimental weapon.
Unfortunately, Yui seems pretty hell-bent on sacrificing herself to let the BETA destroy the rifle. Generic Corporal wants to sacrifice himself in Yui's stead, but the dummy gets himself killed by some ambushing Soldier BETA. Yui mercy kills the poor guy and blows up some near by boxes. Luckily, generic Corporal got a hatch open on the weapon, but a giant BETA destroys the building an knocks Yui out of it. When it looks like she's going to die, she's saved by yet another incoming TSF, this time piloted by Yuuya. He berates some sense into her while Stella provides back up. However, they're going to have to hurry things up, as all the nearby BETA are converging on the hangar.
Mobile Suit Gundam AGE Episode 48
Zeheart prepares the Vagan super laser to fire again, despite the amount of Vagan troops in his way. He evens orders Fram to drag the Gundam into the line of the beam to fry it and the Diva. It's a pretty serious change in Zeheart, who has lost any redeeming features he had after inheriting the mantel from Ezelcant. For any body else besides Kio, that would be enough to try and destroy the Vagan utterly and completely. Unfortunately, this is Kio we're talking about, so you can forget about that.
Knowing that the Diva is the point of death for the beam, Flit orders the crew to evacuate and he turns the ancient battleship into a decoy. Asemu's pirates save the Diva crew while all the Asunos protect their escape. During the fight, Jonathan and Obright die, but not before they take out generic Vagan and Fram. Quite impressive from a pair of normal humans fighting some high-level X-Rounders.
The Asunos Three escape from the beam while Zenald and a ton of other Vagans get caught in the blast. Zeheart's reaction when he sees the surviving Gundams is classic and well-deserving of the jackass. Zeheart jumps into the Legilis in a huff and goes Gundam hunting. It doesn't go well. Asemu dismantles the Legilis and stops just short of killing Zeheart. Instead, he hops out of the Dark Hound and the two have a speech with the cock-pits exposed. This should be almost immediately fatal for Zeheart as he has a suit rupture, but hey, this is LOLAGE. Anyway, the Legilis lets go and goes boom while Asemu calls out his name…so it's just like the second part all over again. Oh, and there's only one more episode of this garbage is left. THANK THE ANIME GODS.
Eureka Seven: AO Episode 19 & 20
I'm burned out. This show does a number on me, and I'm tired of it. So instead, I'll be saving my largely constructed paragraphs for next week, because I have quite a bit to write about for the shows upcoming finale. Instead, here are some concise bulletpoints from the past two weeks:
-Elena is from MangaWorld, confirmed. Probably the stupidest (read: pointless) reveal from this show. Though it's not even really important because it comes right before her explaining she's not from "this" world, I must say that this dumb revelation brought out the most emotion I ever had for this spin-off (mostly rage).
-If there ever was a redeeming point in this entire show... then it had to be the moment in episode 19 where Fleur shot Truth straight the fuck up. I would be willing to forgive this whole show for another badass moment like that. Too bad it wasn't really her father...
-Elena is and always will be a stupid character to me. As if changing her into some sort of badass traitor with an agenda will make me forget her dumb anime references.
-That IFO Zero and Truth being formed together is a slap in the face for me thinking that no more stupid surprises were coming from this show. At least we know who our final boss is going to be. As if things weren't bad enough...
-...but thankfully, the President made arrangements for Team Pied Piper before dying, and at least things (not for long maybe) will start to look up.
There's a lot of things AO has done wrong, though here's to hoping the next few episodes will take a step back from what makes this show boring to what made the original Eureka Seven great.
Tari Tari Episode 12
The Choir Club is still pushing hard for a White Festival. Even with most of the other clubs against her (why?), Konatsu still gets her point across to the other club presidents, and she especially sticks it to that piece of shit girl from the High Vocal club nobody likes Jesus Christ I hate her what a fucking piss party dumpster baby I mean come on.....
Everyone in the club is trying to make the best out of the situation, and even with their own set of problems, like Wien and his props, or Taichi being blackmailed into taking creepy pictures, or even Wakana having a one-on-one with the vice principal at her mothers' grave... they all start to relate back to music as their way of dealing with them. It's the closest to a story about loving music as you're going to get without turning into a musical.
Speaking of musical, things begin to go well for preparations, with the clubs that backed Konatsu up deciding on helping the gang "reach their dream", I suppose. The higher ups don't like it very much, with the Dean from Animal House threatening to suspend any student who disrupts construction on the school. This doesn't stop the gang as they make the final push in setting up their grand play, though we won't know who shows up or what happens until next week. Ghaa, and right when things were getting good, too...
NakaImo Episode 10
As promised, Shougo takes all the girls to the formal event, in this week's NakaImo. How exactly that was done is actually an important plot point, and not a fuzzy detail the anime decides to leave out. Thankfully that has been a consistent theme in the show--there's always some solid detail that is left in for each arc that shows you what is going on behind the scene.
The foreshadowing is pretty strong at this point, at least between the relationship of Seri and Yuzurina. Painting Seri as some kind of family traitor and corporate espionage person is pretty extreme, so it's prudent for Mr. X and the viewers to take it slowly and not jump to conclusion. Of course, it's most likely that Yuzurina had Seri fake the DNA test results in order to gain Shogo's trust, but it will remain a mystery as to why Seri and Yuzurina are doing it.
Meanwhile, this week's Nakaimo is an enjoyable adventure in formal wear and proper methods regarding how to escort ladies. Shougo's mom came across really outstanding in that regard, in that I too would've failed Shougo at escorting, if this was a quiz of some sort. It makes you also wonder why Miyabi had that emotional moment with Shougo. Hopefully we'll get a nice wrap next week!
[Have a ball on Crunchyroll!]
The Ambition of Oda Nobuna Episode 11
True to the strange twist of fate that we see at the start of the episode, Mitsuhide falls off a cliff while charging to save Monkey, and something like the Monkey's arm falls off after the smoking explosion from Hattori Hanzo's bomb. The cliffhanger from last week is easily resolved, and in retrospect, via a very commonly-found cliche, when Monkey's smartphone blocks a bullet.
So, yes, Nobuna makes it back to Kyoto safely, albeit now missing half of her generals and retainers. To recover her from coma, Danjo applied some kind of medicine which made her cope with Monkey's (and Juubei's) death (via a very nice western wedding scene). But now in full revenge mode, it's not clear if Nobuna will fight on for her ideals or just to avenge her friends' deaths while sacrificing her other achievements.
For a change, this week features a lot of Nagahide. Nene also sticks around to tend to the sick Hanbei, but also to serve as an emotional foil to Nobuna's reaction. There's no body anywhere to be seen, so we know the two "dead" characters may reappear at any time. It should make an exciting ending.
[Find Japan's prettiest smiles on Crunchyroll!]
Dog Days' Episode 11
It looks like my allegiance was rewarded after all, since Pastillage manage to reign victorious in the first round of the war games with the help of Hero Mask aka Adel. Unfortunately, Dog Days Prime did not show us the amazing battle where Adel turned the tables with her legendary heroic powers. Instead, we move on to the game's beach round that's filled with swimsuits and accidental slip ups.
To add to the typical episode plots, this week's episode of Dog Days Prime focuses on the body swapping theme, which is one of the various themes that I have seen a million times in TV shows. Despite the show resorting to body swapping, episode 11 still focused on the characters bonding during Cinque's laid-back vacation in Flonyard.
For an episode that is suppose to be the semi-final episode of the series, there doesn't seem to be any sort of conflict that will give Prime a climatic finale, since the show focused mostly on Cinque, Nanami, and Becky's adventures with the people of Flonyard. The closest thing we might get is an over-the-top closing segment for the war games, or having Cinque pick the lucky girl that he wants to date. Based on my impression so far, I await Dog Days Prime's finale with the expectation that I am going to have a grand spanking good time.
[You can switch bodies with Dog Days Prime over at Crunchyroll]
Space Bros. Episode 24
After living in boxes and a heated rock-paper-scissors tournament, I believe this is the first real time we get to see Nanba actually moving closer to where his brother is. Of course, I don't just mean the space centre, but his actual progression towards his goal of walking on the moon (or Mars, if he's still thinking about that). Who would have thought that mowing the lawn would make the afro-topped man so happy!
We also get to see the introduction of a new character, and one that we'll be hearing about for the next few episodes no doubt. It seems Hibito has fallen out of favour with one of the people that will judge Nanba in the next round of space exams (I'm sure they have a better name than that, but space exams sound cool), so naturally Nanba is pretty worried about that. Something tells me that his ability to produce plenty of soap bubbles will help him slip through the process.
[Space pugs can be found on Crunchyroll!]
Accel World episode 23
The fight against Nomi begins in earnest as Chiyu finally sees the light, though her motivations for joining Nomi in the first place are left unquestioned. Haru and Taku are light touches. Of course, the effeminate d-bag has a trick up his sleeve, and the trick is the entirely CG-rendered "Black Vice", a member of the ominously-named Acceleration Research Group. Surely they're not a sinister organization devoted to exploiting Acceleration for personal gain? Why would Nomi be friends with that sort of folk? It's not as if his use of Acceleration were selfish or anything! Am I being to sarcastic?!
Anyway, Black Vice and some convenient hostage-taking/hostage-torturing end with Haru getting sandwiched in a morale-draining cube prison thing Taku getting the shaft and just before the killing blow lands...intervention! In the best way possible! Snow Black on a flaming horse! Best show ever.
Did I ever mention that Haru has a totally awesome girlfriend? It's the best part of this whole Mary Sue (or was it Marty Stu?) anime thing. The wish being fulfilled here is rather more wholesome than the usual "Milquetoast lead gets a harem/magic girlfriend". Snow Black is a strong, respectable character all on her own, and not at all dependent on the fattie she fell for.
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