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February 2017 anime roundup

IMG_0508When your anime watching is restricted to what you can view when you are on public transport, some anime fall by the wayside. Acca? Stylish political intrigue with adults that I once caught the ticket inspector pausing by me to check out. Little Witch Academia? Wholesome family cartoon that is maybe a little weird for a grown man to watch but whatever. Scum’s Wish? Let’s try catch up on that another time, shall we?


IMG_0512Something that has cropped into my head while watching Acca is whether all the nonstop cake talk is fanservice. None of it has anything to do with the story. We will get dragged away from intrigue to a bloke looking at cakes. There are entire characters who appear to exist purely to either eat cake or express delight at the prospect of eating cake. It kind of reminds me of listening to boring young adults talk about alcohol in the sense that it appears the nights where they get to drink alcohol and get drunk are the only parts of their life worth living and every other conversation is either when they were last drunk and when they plan to get drunk next.

Anyway, asides from that, I continue to enjoy Acca a reasonable amount. It’s so low key it’s hard to ever get too invested but the little conspiracy and intrigue it has constantly rumbling away in the background remains interesting and I generally find the characters interesting people when they’re not talking about cakes (which is alarmingly infrequently I must admit). I like the different cultures in each region they visit, which lets each episode stand apart from each other because I feel like otherwise the show would blend together too much. As I said, it’s hard to get excited but I do enjoy keeping up with the show.

Little Witch Academia

IMG_0510I’m slightly less enamoured with Little Witch Academia than I was when it first started, mostly because it’s become more clear now that this is a children’s show. The construction of each episode follows such a strict formula where the important detail is a touch overly telegraphed and the basic message too simple. This isn’t to say it’s doing the formula poorly, just so much as I find it hard to remain as engaged anymore. Lord knows I’ve tried to watch kids shows again and tried to rediscover my childish joy but I must confess at the grand old age of 26 they’re just not doing it for me like they used to.

That all said, I still tune into Little Witch Academia every week and still quite enjoy watching it. It’s very well made and remains a lot of fun. I’ve said before that I can totally see why it has been picked up by Netflix as I could totally see how this could catch on with a much wider audience, especially once it’s dubbed. It’s harmless and fun and it’s not like there are very many anime I can watch on public transport without feeling like I’m doing something dirty (this is basically the entire reason why I haven’t watched more of Scum’s Wish).

March Comes in Like a Lion

IMG_0511Sometimes March can be hard to watch because I want to reach in and help the characters. It’s tough watching nice people whose brains or circumstances act against them. Not in the Key way where they act like actual children and the desire is to protect, but adults who I want to succeed in life and want to reach through and help them. The brain is a funny old thing that sometimes refuses to listen to reality.

So yeah, I still really like the show, although I wonder where it will go from here. There are still some question marks hanging over the series, such as what is his step-brother doing now, alongside unresolved issues such as how will he graduate and when will his step sister stop chasing that horrible man. I haven’t got bored yet because it remains engaging even with its slow pace, but with the end of at least this season I hope we reach some kind of breakthrough.

Tanya the Evil

IMG_0507So I’m a couple of episodes behind so I will keep this short, but my main observation lately is that the show loses its sheen when Tanya embraces her bloodlust. She’s supposed to be a sociopath so her scoffing at the deaths of her unprepared enemies still works, as you need that side of her for it to be more entertaining when the world works against her. Tanya thinking she’s succeeded then having it thrown in her wonderfully angry contorted face is the bread and butter of what makes the show entertaining on the surface level. When Tanya becomes bloodthirsty though is when I feel like I’m watching some neo-nazis fantasy and that’s the thing this anime really needs to stray away from.

Rakugo Season 2

IMG_0509The impact the scene when they watched the old video tape of Sukeroku taught me two things. Firstly was that this show still has the capacity to move me and really get to me. Secondly though, the fact that they achieved this by showing a grainy clip from last season shows that it looks like this season just isn’t grabbing me as much as the last. Not a shameful display by any means as the first season was my anime of the year that year, but I suppose the shine has just worn off a little.

It’s still fascinating though. The desire for that eternally miserable old man to drag an art form with him to the grave as a pseudo revenge for bringing him misery his entire life. The line that struck me was when the idea that he might die and never have to do rakugo again brought him happiness and peace. It shows how much he has projected his misery onto the art form and refuses to acknowledge his inherent misery and that the only joy he got was from rakugo. He’s similar to the kid from March in that way, except here he’s too old by this stage to recognise the problem is inherent to him.

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  1. Ramiel
    Posted March 2, 2017 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

    For me, Rakugo season 2 has actually elevated the entire series. I also enjoyed the 1st season quite a lot, though the ending didn’t sit quite well with me. The events of season 2 have completely changed that, and its been monumental in developing Kiku’s character. As long as it keeps it up, the series in its entirety may go down as one of my top 5 of all time.

    In other news, how come you are limited to watching anime on the bus? Life got you too busy to watch it anywhere else?

    What I’m saying is you need to watch Kuzu….

    • Mentar
      Posted March 2, 2017 at 11:14 pm | Permalink

      Seconded. It’s fine to drop Kuzu after 1-2 eps if you can’t enjoy the content, but it would be a crime to not at least try it.

  2. Ken
    Posted March 3, 2017 at 12:10 am | Permalink

    Get some Virtual Reality glasses. Then no one will see what you are watching.

  3. Yalu
    Posted March 4, 2017 at 3:10 am | Permalink

    I have to admit, Little Witch Academia is fun but not as enjoyable because it is a kid’s show. I wish Akko will have more character development. But the references are amazing, Night Fall is still a better love story than Twilight.

  4. Posted March 11, 2017 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

    yeah, digging acca

    Tanya kinda blows but it’s the closest thing to a military show this season…

  5. ANON
    Posted March 28, 2017 at 6:34 pm | Permalink

    I know you’re busy with RL stuff and what not, but where’s the spring season preview? I won’t be able to know what sort of anime will air next season without it!

    Oh, and it turns out the cake talk was central to the plot of ACCA.

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