31 CommentsFuture Diary / By Scamp /

Future Diary episode 2

The problem with this season is the two series I had pencilled in for blogging were Last Exile and Guilty Crown. Now both of their first episodes impressed, but they were also shallow, which might make it difficult to come up with something new to say with every episode. So I’ve had to pick a backup series.

I didn’t really want to pick up Future Diary. I never like picking up series that already have massive fanbases of the source material or franchise in question. Problem is that, asides from Guilty Crown and Last Exile, the series that have impressed me the most this season are Persona 4, Fate/Zero and Future Diary. So I was going to have to suck it up and bear the constant remarks from manga fans who say stuff like “well in the manga what actually happened was this thing and I’m an insufferable twat who sees himself as the righteous bearer of The Truth from The Original Source”. No promises I’ll continue blogging Future Diary. I tend to like to stick to covering only 2 anime a season, so maybe Last Exile and Guilty Crown will blow me away with their astounding depth in their second episodes.

I know I should probably be blathering about what an utter nutcase Yuno is, but the star of the show in my eyes is our wimpy male lead. I loved this expression after Yuno fobbed him off to go to PE. It’s that look of utter dread at his own actions. He had seen what an utter nutjob Yuno was, yet he was the one to try open negotiations after their battle with Third. He knows the only way he can come out of this alive is to leave his future in the hands of Yuno. There’s something gloriously ironic in that, in order to become the Master of Everything, he first has to give up his own fate. It’s back to the total lack of control he has over his own life that I talked about in the first episode. This episode was an endless string of Yuukki with a look of helpless dread on his face and I loved it.

Another thing I like about Future Diary is the campy self-awareness it has. It plays the Battle Royal game and the themes at the heart of the story straight, but there’s just enough of a wink in its step to show that it knows how ridiculous it is. It manages to pull this off without being jarring about it (hello Kamisama Dolls, Angel Beats and every other anime directed by Seiji Kishi). That’s why the ‘wink in its step’ metaphor works. It still strides confidently towards its explosive, bloody finale, but it can look at the crowd midway through a booming speech and deliver a knowing wink. It can do both kinds of winks too, whether it be the dark humour of “lets just re-iterate how shitty Yuukki’s life really is” to the much more straight forward humour of the post-credit Murmur segments. That said, the first episodes Murmur segment was definitely better than this episodes. Yeah, I’ll talk about that a bit later.

While I like that Future Diary is a touch camp, this episode did get a bit silly at times. One-eyed motorbike nothwithstanding, there was also the need of a high suspension of disbelief when Ninth started detonating the entire school. How did she set them up? When did she find time to plant mines in the school yard? You’d think someone would notice, especially when they came into school in the morning. Her whole plan would have been ruined by a wayward dog. She hardly set the mines up while they were in class, seeing as the entire school overlooked that field. Also, with all those explosions going off a few metres away from the main characters, surely their hearing would have been shot by the time they reached the field, rendering Yuno’s shouted commands hopeless.

How did ninth and fourth find the main character so quickly anyway? Oh wait, we were explained that in the ending segment with Murmur. Her explanation aside, that has to be one of the laziest methods of exposition around. I guess Future Diary decided that, in order to speed up the action, they shoved all the uninteresting exposition to after the ending credits. I guess that works, but it is a very lazy method. Murmur’s explanation is a bit puzzling anyway. Did Norio Wakamoto just decide that the Master of Time and Space had to come from Japan? Maybe the Master of Time and Space Keyboard of his is in katakana. Also, isn’t it convinient that they were all within about 50km from each other. Maybe applying logic to Future Diary isn’t the best idea.

inb4 they explained it better in the manga

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  1. Marow
    Posted October 18, 2011 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

    Maybe you should just blog Bakuman again. It would be amazing.

    • Scamp
      Posted October 20, 2011 at 7:06 pm | Permalink


  2. Posted October 18, 2011 at 9:19 pm | Permalink

    They explained it better in the manga!!! :O

    P.S. No, I haven’t read the manga. :|

  3. A Day Without Me
    Posted October 18, 2011 at 9:26 pm | Permalink

    The manga explained it sooooooo much better! It didn’t explain it at all!

    But, legit, yeah, don’t try to apply logic to Future Diary; the wheels fall off pretty damn fast that way.

    • ペーパー先生
      Posted October 18, 2011 at 11:44 pm | Permalink


  4. Posted October 18, 2011 at 9:43 pm | Permalink

    Is it just me, or did the artwork actually improve in the 2nd episode here? I noticed much less derp face. Or at least, everything was moving much quicker for me to notice.

  5. Posted October 18, 2011 at 9:59 pm | Permalink

    The way I see the ‘they’re all in the same country’ thing is to compare Deus to Ryuk; he seems to largely just be interested in observing this game going on. It wouldn’t be quite so interesting for him if the diary owners were all in different countries, and half of just didn’t bother with trying to find each other due to the difficulty of it.

    That being said, I have no explanation as to why it has to be Japan in particular. Maybe it’s just like Death Note again, and it simply ended up that way by coincidence?

    • mcm38
      Posted October 19, 2011 at 10:15 am | Permalink

      It’s in Japan, cause every anime is directed at Japanese audience. It’s first of all to make it easy for the reader to understand every cultural and social occurences. And also it is easier for the mangaka (/scriptwriters) to draw in a world he’s living in than to draw an unfamiliar setting.

    • Scamp
      Posted October 20, 2011 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

      I liked what Death Note did in regards to that. Light specifically asked Ryuk why he was chosen and Ryuk just laughs at him. “You just happened to pick it up, you’re not special” or something along those lines

      • Mr. Anon
        Posted October 25, 2011 at 2:03 am | Permalink

        Ryuk was lying when he said that, obviously.

  6. Kioku
    Posted October 18, 2011 at 10:09 pm | Permalink

    I read and enjoyed the manga. I look forward to how the animated version of this story will evolve. And I do hope you will continue blogging it, as I liked your outlook on some of the shows I’ve watched in the past.

  7. Anna Ki
    Posted October 18, 2011 at 11:18 pm | Permalink

    Yeahhhh. That’s why I decided after finishing Mirai Nikki that it had been an utter waste of my time. Everything about it is utterly nonsensical. Logic? Who cares about logic when you have deliciously yandere Yuno?

    In any case, the anime should be entertaining, at least.

    • Kiseki
      Posted October 19, 2011 at 4:56 am | Permalink

      Same. I read it thinking it would be great but I ended up disliking it for that and many other reasons. Usually at most I’m just indifferent toward something.

      Would’ve helped if I liked Yuno though.

  8. Posted October 18, 2011 at 11:34 pm | Permalink

    I came for a preview of episode 3. I stayed for the sidebar picture. Good choice, Master Scamp, good choice indeed.

    • Anna Ki
      Posted October 18, 2011 at 11:57 pm | Permalink

      Which sidebar picture?

      • Posted October 19, 2011 at 3:58 am | Permalink

        uhh, the one on top of the search thingy.

      • mcm38
        Posted October 19, 2011 at 10:18 am | Permalink

        Iz on the right top of the page.

  9. AdventCirno
    Posted October 19, 2011 at 2:11 am | Permalink

    Nope. The manga is just as ridiculous.

    • mcm38
      Posted October 19, 2011 at 10:23 am | Permalink

      It’s ridiculous, but fun to read/watch. Tough I dropped the manga halfway trough for now.

  10. redball
    Posted October 19, 2011 at 4:25 am | Permalink

    I can suspend disbelief but I find it harder when the characters act infuriatingly stupid. If you have time to devise a plan, why wouldn’t you think to try heading back in the direction where bombs have already gone off? If you know you’re the bomb wielding killer’s target, why would you decide to head to the building with all your friends in it? Why do the characters keep telling each other, including their enemies, what type of diary they have? Still going to watch but there’s some of the same warning signs as Deadman Wonderland. At least Yuno lives up to the hype.

    • mcm38
      Posted October 19, 2011 at 10:22 am | Permalink

      Why? Because otherwise the characters wouldn’t be in a life/death situation. And if they didn’t tell what kind of diary they were using, the mangaka wouldn’t have been able to write a proper plot in which they defeat the enemy diaryholder without knowing what kind of diary it is.

      • redball
        Posted October 19, 2011 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

        She’s got bombs all over the school, surely they could keep the life and death situation going without having the characters do something stupid. As for the type of diary, they beat the first one without knowing what he had. I’m sure it makes it easier for the writer to tell the story if they go around bragging about their phone’s abilities in front of their enemies, but it also makes the characters seem pretty dumb. It irks me because, stupidity of characters and small plotholes aside, the series is excellent so far.

      • Blue
        Posted October 19, 2011 at 3:04 pm | Permalink

        If I am the terrorist I would feel dumb if my target adhere to your plan and hid around bombs that have either been diffused or exploded. I would feel even dumber if the explosive was a dud thus lead to my victims escape. Thus I would prepare multiple bomb around the same vicinity wouldn’t I? Isn’t it too credulous to assume that the area where the bomb have exploded is the safety zone?

    • Scamp
      Posted October 20, 2011 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

      I can understand why characters wouldn’t think straight when they’re in a situation such as having their school blown up. There’s far stupidier things in this series than that

  11. luffyluffy
    Posted October 19, 2011 at 6:46 pm | Permalink

    The only thing I disliked is whatever encoding gotspeed used fucked up badly and I couldn’t watch the opening OR the ending :(

    • HomuHomu
      Posted October 20, 2011 at 1:22 am | Permalink

      I’m gonna watch this anime for Yuno.

      • HomuHomu
        Posted October 20, 2011 at 1:22 am | Permalink

        lol whoops replied to the wrong thing

      • luffyluffy
        Posted October 20, 2011 at 3:28 am | Permalink

        Why not go back to the past and prevent yourself from ever posting in the first place?

  12. Embok
    Posted October 23, 2011 at 12:23 am | Permalink

    Honestly I was happy with the post-ED explanation simply because I wasn’t expecting an explanation at all.

    I’m wondering just how big the school is, since it seemed like they never ran out of students and classrooms to blow up.

    • Anna Ki
      Posted October 26, 2011 at 4:02 am | Permalink

      You know just how much the manga’s logic sucks when the adaptation is forced to shoehorn in explanations in fourth-wall breaking segments at the end.

      Ah well, no one’s watching this for the amazing worldbuilding anyway.

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