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What Current Anime Are You Watching Version v4.0


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So I'm a Spider, So What? is finally starting to do something resembling advancing the plot, which is nice.

This week's episode finally had the main character actually have a conversation with the mysterious Administrator D, introduced the Demon Lord during preparations for a war, and killed the hero offscreen.  Another few episodes and we might actually get to the main plot.

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24 minutes ago, Seto Kaiba said:

introduced the Demon Lord during preparations for a war, and killed the hero offscreen. 

Welp that's another scene off the OP bingo card.

If the hero shows up after this that will confirm the time displacement between the two plot lines.

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2 hours ago, Seto Kaiba said:

So I'm a Spider, So What? is finally starting to do something resembling advancing the plot, which is nice.

This week's episode finally had the main character actually have a conversation with the mysterious Administrator D, introduced the Demon Lord during preparations for a war, and killed the hero offscreen.  Another few episodes and we might actually get to the main plot.

Yuuki Aoi is really selling this show for me.

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Re:Zero just will NOT take off that cactus condom...

I'm about seven episodes in, and Subaru has died an unreasonable number of times.  This boy's spirit animal must be a lemming.  

He's been disemboweled what, three or four times now?  He's been stabbed to death in an alley.  He's died in his sleep (cause unknown).  Most recently, he started to spontaneously vomit (poisoned?) and then got hit so hard by something that it not only apparently disemboweled him it took off one of his arms and seems to have split his skull too.

As it is, this show is giving me a really weird vibe.  It's like Death Note, except instead of examining a murder mystery from the perspective of the (supernaturally empowered) murderer pretending to be a detective, Subaru is basically a supernaturally-empowered murder victim trying to solve his own murder before it happens and being sent back to the start when he inevitably fails until he acquires enough out-of-context knowledge to succeed.  It reminds me a lot of Kotaro Uchikoshi's writing for the Zero Escape series of escape room games1, both in terms of how death is the catalyst for time looping and how the solution always seems to be impossible without dying several times first to acquire out-of-context knowledge.

Admittedly, Re:Zero hasn't become quite as dark as the Zero Escape trilogy yet... though I can't shake the feeling we're headed in that direction given that Puck has indicated that he'll destroy the world if Emilia dies.

Thus far, my favorite character is definitely Roswaal.  He's obviously evil, but it only seems to express itself as a desire to troll Subaru.

 

1. Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine DoorsI Want to be a Good Person/Good People Die (localized as Virtue's Last Reward) and Zero Time Dilemma.

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Watching s'more Re:Zero before bed... and holy hell this show doesn't have ANY intention of letting Subaru catch a break does it?

I'd kind of hoped the show might get past its obsession with making Subaru suffer horribly after the first story arc where he was repeatedly disemboweled, had his head caved in, got his throat slashed, lost a few extremities, committed suicide by jumping off a cliff, was cursed to death, and got nearly torn apart by wild dogs. 

I'm all of about one episode into the show's second story arc, and he's already managed to be challenged to a duel after insulting the assembled knights in the royal castle... and even though they're using wooden swords, the fight is so horrifically one-sided and brutal that even the knights who'd gathered to watch him get his ass beat are visibly upset.  Even Yamcha gets more dignity than this.  He basically has a psychotic episode at the end of it all.  If I didn't know there was a lot more to this show I'd almost expect him to snap and become a serial killer or something... the faces he made during his rant are not faces a mentally well person makes.  

 

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14 hours ago, Sanity is Optional said:

I mean, there's a reason why he is sometimes referred to as Suffaru. Or why there's a "being Subaru is suffering" meme.

... yep, I can see it.

The worst part is that he does it to himself at least half of the time.  It's one thing when events beyond his control conspire to ruin his life, but he's so good at putting his foot in his mouth that he must brush his teeth with athlete's foot cream.  It makes him kind of hard to sympathize with when he's the architect of his own misery as often as not.

I can tell I'm actually getting into this story a bit, though, because I genuinely wanted to punch Subaru when Rem poured her heart out to him and his immediate response was saying he loves Emilia... a girl who just sort of grudgingly tolerates his existence without any apparent interest in him.

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10 minutes ago, Seto Kaiba said:

... yep, I can see it.

The worst part is that he does it to himself at least half of the time.  It's one thing when events beyond his control conspire to ruin his life, but he's so good at putting his foot in his mouth that he must brush his teeth with athlete's foot cream.  It makes him kind of hard to sympathize with when he's the architect of his own misery as often as not.

I can tell I'm actually getting into this story a bit, though, because I genuinely wanted to punch Subaru when Rem poured her heart out to him and his immediate response was saying he loves Emilia... a girl who just sort of grudgingly tolerates his existence without any apparent interest in him.

Sounds about the right reaction.  From what I've heard S2 is his redemption arc of sorts, which with the grave his dug himself that has to be one hell of a climb and explains why people are loving it now.

Edited by Focslain
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27 minutes ago, Focslain said:

Sounds about the right reaction.  From what I've heard S2 is his redemption arc of sorts, which with the grave his dug himself that has to be one hell of a climb and explains why people are loving it now.

Season 2 definitely puts Subaru in a better light.  Even the end of Season 1 he starts to change.

 

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Finished season one of Re:Zero earlier.  It was nice to see a little character development for Subaru, but it felt like it ended too easily?  After several episodes of building Betelgeuse up to be a nigh-unstoppable force of nature whose ability to pull a Grand Theft Me on his followers and even Subaru made him near-unkillable, he goes down like a punk repeatedly and ultimately cashes out when Subaru casually lights him on fire.

Season two's opener... ech.  Talk about starting as we meant to go on.  Most of the troops who were victorious in the fight with the white whale and so on are wiped out, Rem's in your standard soap opera coma, and Crusch has lost her memories (and temporarily an arm), and Subaru's already committed suicide once.... and there's still like 10 minutes to go in the season's first episode. :vava:

Spoiler

Given that Subaru's ability Return by Death lets him travel back in time to an arbitrary save point and alter history, I have to wonder one thing given how often Subaru dies...

Is Re:Zero's concept of time a single linear timeline that can be altered, or is Re:Zero's author going for the kind of Sheldrake-inspired "mental time travel" that was a fixture in Kotaro Uchikoshi's various works where the consciousness/soul is sent back in time and creates a new branching parallel timeline that doesn't ret-gone the timeline they were previously in?

Basically... are the people Subaru is saving when he uses Return by Death to try again with out-of-context knowledge the same people who he previously failed to save, or are they a different version of that person in an alternate timeline?

Or, in Re:Zero's psychological horror-friendly context, has our well-meaning protagonist Subaru inadvertently killed everyone in the entire world several times over and left no small number of Emilias, Rems, and Rams mourning the various deaths and suicides needed to access Return by Death?

I have a very bad feeling that the answer is "Yes"... and if Subaru ever learns that, his sanity probably won't survive it.

 

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I have been enjoying ReZero,  it along with Erased are probably the 2 most recent anime series that have not really been forgettable in the past few years.

There are others, but none that I can think of recently that I would say I got pulled into.

 

This brings me to Horimiya Ep 9..  this series is continuing to be a good watch.

Next up is to catch up on Higurashi.

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Almost caught up on Re:Zero... this has been some seriously dark sh*t.

"Misery porn" doesn't go quite far enough to describe it.  Everyone in this fantasy world seems to be at most one mild inconvenience from becoming a serial killer, and a fair number of them seem to have decided "Why wait?".

Worse still, it seems my earlier musing was dead on... Subaru's Return by Death seems to work identically to the Uchikoshi's SHIFTers in the Zero Escape trilogy, creating a new alternate timeline every time his consciousness is sent back in time.  He's not changing the past to eliminate a bad future, all of the loops occur in parallel to everyone except him and maybe his witch benefactor.

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Caught up on current stuff again...

So I'm a Spider, So What? has finally dropped the first overt clue that the spider's story and human story are occurring at least 15 years apart.  Not much for actual plot development in this latest episode, just some worldbuilding WRT the demon war and our first real look at the spider from someone else's perspective (in which it's a horrifying monster that mows an entire adventurer party down without breaking a sweat.  

The Hidden Dungeon Only I Can Enter did some backsliding towards pure fanservice territory, with a hot springs episode that managed to be fanservice-y while only featuring the hot springs for about 30 seconds.

Jujutsu Kaisen launched a new story arc, which is delving into Fushiguro's past and the cursed objects that were stolen in the raid on Jujutsu Tech in the last story arc.  It's mainly setup right now, but it's still pretty engaging.

All caught up on Re:Zero: Life in a Different World from Zero.  I have to admit, I did not expect to like the series as much as I am.  I'm not sold on any of the ships that seemed like the main attraction from the outside looking in (e.g. Isekai Quartet) but there's some truly interesting worldbuilding going on here around the witches.  Especially the attraction an object like a book that foretells like the Gospels the Witch Cult use or the Book of Wisdom that Roswaal had... and the idea that the books are telling a biased and highly selective version of events in order to steer their users towards some unknowable end goal.  The witches themselves are particularly interesting since they seem to be generally non-malicious but have a bad case of Blue-and-Orange morality and abilities that border on the Lovecraftian in places, not to mention Puck's own... abilities.  Roswaal himself appears to be an abomination of forbidden magic since he's 400+ years old and apparently quite devoted to the Witch of Greed.

Kaguya-sama: Love is War season two was pretty excellent as well.  The animation seems more fluid than the previous season's, though I wish they'd gone a little farther with the story than they did.  They did adequate justice to the student council elections and Ino's... experiences... with seeing Kaguya and Miyuki's antics out of context, though they chose to end on the bit where Kaguya's ancient cell phone breaks which was kind of a downer ending.

Lastly, I started This Hero is too Careful for Me, which I guess is localized as Cautious Hero: the Hero is Overpowered but Overly Cautious.  It's been a while since I saw a series where the main character(s) drew me into the story so quickly or became likeable so fast.  Freyja Wion in Macross Delta was probably the last one to do that.  Between Ristarte's reaction to being told her next world-saving gig tops the threat assessment chart is some unprofessional but definitely relatable outrage, followed by her realizing she's been narrating and dismissing it as a product of stress.  (They got an audible chuckle out of me after only a minute or s when she starts taking jabs at the Isekai genre in general when she says she pulls her heroes out of Japan because there's less expository work involved... and several of the character sheets she throws away are protagonists from other isekai stories including Satoru Suzuki from the Overlord series).  Combine that with Seiya's utter disinterest in, and disgust with, having been isekai'd (and his summoning being a very blatant homage to Terminator) and instinctive distrust of everything Ristarte says, they make for a deeply entertaining duo.  I'm all in.  With a start like this, this has to be good.

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Enjoying the hell out of Cautious Hero... Seiya's unique approach to fantasy world bullsh*t really is a breath of fresh air, especially in the reactions it forces everyone else to display.

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58 minutes ago, Seto Kaiba said:

Enjoying the hell out of Cautious Hero... Seiya's unique approach to fantasy world bullsh*t really is a breath of fresh air, especially in the reactions it forces everyone else to display.

I loved that show when it aired.   I love Ristarte,  I admit I love anything Toyosaki Aki does,

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Finished Cautious Hero a bit ago.

Ristarte is definitely the Goddess of Thirst, not the Goddess of Healing.  I think she hit peak crazy around the time she was buying Seiya a banana hammock with a hole in the front on the grounds that she'd be able to see his equipment that way.

All in all, an enjoyable series.  I had a lot of fun with it.

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Can anybody tell me whether Gatchaman Crowds is worth my patience?

I tried watching before but dumped it after 10 minutes (plus a further 5 - 10 skipped minutes). It wasn't like the beloved classic, and just looked shitty to me.

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1 hour ago, Podtastic said:

Can anybody tell me whether Gatchaman Crowds is worth my patience?

I tried watching before but dumped it after 10 minutes (plus a further 5 - 10 skipped minutes). It wasn't like the beloved classic, and just looked shitty to me.

Mm. Gatchaman Crowds is a slow starter and Hajime's aloof (often contrarian) personality felt grating and off key. That said, the audience gets a nice pay off in the show's final acts. I thought it was a decent enough reboot overall, albeit not a true classic. Easily overshadowed by other anime that also debuted in 2013 (Kill la Kill and Attack on Titan to name two). If you are expecting something like classic Gatchaman, and don't want to bother with a modern interpretation of those themes, then it will probably be a disappointment.

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Since it's a meeting-heavy day, I've got another new anime running in the background while I listen to other people argue.

BORUFI: I Don't Want to Get Hurt, so I'll Max Out My Defense is... odd, to say the least.  I'm not really sure what this series is trying to be at present (2ep in) but it definitely feels like the story's going to revolve around the massive sense of anticlimax that comes from Kaede having accidentally created a game-breaking build in her VRMMO.  I am enjoying the in-jokes and homages, like that the second group of player-killers who attack her in the game's first event are obviously the Black Tri-Stars from Mobile Suit Gundam and attempt to Jet Stream Attack her (before getting no-sold anyway).  She's so bored with what a non-event combat is that she's resorted to drawing the Nazca lines in the dirt.

Edited by Seto Kaiba
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I recently got Netflix, so I've been checking out their anime. I finished the first seasons of Pacific Rim: Black and Ultraman. PRB was alright, nothing really noteworthy, enjoyable in its simplicity. I vaguely remember seeing the original Ultraman as a youngster, so seeing the original Giant of Light version stirred a memory or two. The new Ultraman, or men, as it were, has more in common with Iron Man than Ultraman. No giants- all the aliens are at human or slightly larger than human scale. Too, like Star Trek, the vast majority of aliens look like humans with weird heads. If you're looking for a giant Ultraman tackling kaiju and choju, look elsewhere.  Ultraman is mediocre fare.

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4 hours ago, Seto Kaiba said:

Since it's a meeting-heavy day, I've got another new anime running in the background while I listen to other people argue.

BORUFI: I Don't Want to Get Hurt, so I'll Max Out My Defense is... odd, to say the least.  I'm not really sure what this series is trying to be at present (2ep in) but it definitely feels like the story's going to revolve around the massive sense of anticlimax that comes from Kaede having accidentally created a game-breaking build in her VRMMO.  I am enjoying the in-jokes and homages, like that the second group of player-killers who attack her in the game's first event are obviously the Black Tri-Stars from Mobile Suit Gundam and attempt to Jet Stream Attack her (before getting no-sold anyway).  She's so bored with what a non-event combat is that she's resorted to drawing the Nazca lines in the dirt.

Borufi was hilarious, I loved that show.  The show gets much better later.

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13 hours ago, Podtastic said:

Can anybody tell me whether Gatchaman Crowds is worth my patience?

I tried watching before but dumped it after 10 minutes (plus a further 5 - 10 skipped minutes). It wasn't like the beloved classic, and just looked shitty to me.

I enjoyed it for what it was, but it really shouldn't have had the Gatchaman name attached as it is wholly unrelated. It is also largely character-driven, with very little in the way of cool fight scenes(I think there was one?).

It will never become anything like Gatchaman, no matter how long you stick with it. Tatsunoko was "celebrating" their fiftieth year in business at the time, and I think they slapped the name on something already deep into production so they could claim to have made "a new Gatchaman" for the studio's anniversary.

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2 hours ago, JB0 said:

It will never become anything like Gatchaman, no matter how long you stick with it. Tatsunoko was "celebrating" their fiftieth year in business at the time, and I think they slapped the name on something already deep into production so they could claim to have made "a new Gatchaman" for the studio's anniversary.

Tatsunoko Production doing a poor job with its anniversary titles seems to be a bit of a running theme.  The 55th anniversary commemorative title, The Price of Smiles, was a complete and utter trainwreck... a mecha anime that couldn't seem to think of anything to do with mecha and had a plot so incoherent and half-arsed it made Southern Cross look like a timeless masterpiece.

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16 hours ago, technoblue said:

If you are expecting something like classic Gatchaman, and don't want to bother with a modern interpretation of those themes, then it will probably be a disappointment.

5 hours ago, JB0 said:

 It is also largely character-driven, with very little in the way of cool fight scenes(I think there was one?).

It will never become anything like Gatchaman, no matter how long you stick with it. Tatsunoko was "celebrating" their fiftieth year in business at the time, and I think they slapped the name on something already deep into production so they could claim to have made "a new Gatchaman" for the studio's anniversary.

Thanks. I'll skip it completely.

 

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Since the VPN went down for a good while today, I got some more quality watching in.

Re:Zero's second season is shaping up nicely to the point where I can almost kid myself that Subaru's going to accomplish something now that his plan to one-up Roswaal has gone so far nearly without a hitch.  I'll be rather sad when it lapses back into the usual misery business.

So I'm a Spider, So What? is also finally doing something like make progress on the story, now that the hero's dead and the spider is actually starting to learn about the setting instead of just mindlessly leveling.

Starting I Couldn't Become a Hero, So I Reluctantly Decided to Get a Job from my backlog... gonna see where that goes.

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16 minutes ago, Seto Kaiba said:

Since the VPN went down for a good while today, I got some more quality watching in.

Re:Zero's second season is shaping up nicely to the point where I can almost kid myself that Subaru's going to accomplish something now that his plan to one-up Roswaal has gone so far nearly without a hitch.  I'll be rather sad when it lapses back into the usual misery business.

So I'm a Spider, So What? is also finally doing something like make progress on the story, now that the hero's dead and the spider is actually starting to learn about the setting instead of just mindlessly leveling.

Starting I Couldn't Become a Hero, So I Reluctantly Decided to Get a Job from my backlog... gonna see where that goes.

I really enjoyed I Couldn't Become a Hero, So I Reluctantly Decided to Get a Job.  It was rather silly.

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