It’s time for another round of Anime Shorts as we take a look at the final episodes of Aiura and Sparrow’s Hotel as well as the 12th episode of Muromi-san. This week there’s no time for weird out of context references, because we also have a couple of Final Impressions to get to as well.
Recap: The girls spend a lazy, lovely Summer vacation together.
Jel’s Thoughts: I actually had a passing thought last week that the final episode of Aiura wouldn’t have any dialogue and just show off the staff’s technical skills. And look, that’s what happened! OK there were a few spoken lines, but it was really about lovingly animating and directing each little vignette as the girls enjoyed their Summer. It made the ending really beautiful without getting too serious or dramatic, particularly the parting shot of Yukon as she looks off into the stars.
Jel: I described Aiura as “Anime Haiku” when the show first started, and that description pretty much held up throughout. Very little actually happens in each brief episode, but we learn so much about the characters from the smallest, most subtle interactions and movements. The animation and pretty water colored backgrounds were all top notch as well, making the entire affair feel like a glorious tech demo on how Slice of Life shows should be made.
While the time constraints may make it impossible to get totally invested in the characters and the message of the show, Aiura is really all about details and personally I eat that kind of thing up. As the final shot of the final episode played out, I felt myself both satisfied in watching something simple but very well crafted, as well as a bit of sadness that it had to end. Would Aiura be as good as full length show? Would it be as good if it continued for another season? I can’t say for sure, but I can say they accomplished their mission with this season and it’s definitely worth the small investment of time to watch.
Lifesong Aiura has been a surprisingly fun dose of cute each week. Like Jel I wonder if this anime could have been more but I am happy with what it was. I feel a bit of sadness now that is it ending and puts this up there with some of the best slice of life I’ve watched. If they do make more you can count on me to tune in.
Recap: The staff writes out their wishes for Tanabata, leading Yuu and Satou to understand each other a little better.
Jel’s Thoughts: I feel like the final episode of Sparrow’s Hotel was trying to be a little deeper than it really should have. Particularly Yuu’s unread Tanabata wish was a more dramatic gesture than this show should try to make. Overall though this was really a victory lap to let us know that life goes on the Sparrow’s Hotel just as it always has. The manager will fight with her creepy brother, Yuu will continue to be fascinated with Satou, Billy will occasionally show up to fight, and Misono will watch it all happen. I have no idea what that means, but man did they hammer that point down!
Jel: Like most shorts, I had no intention of watching any more of Sparrow’s Hotel than I had to. There was just some kind of weird, magnetic, low budget charm to the first episode that I couldn’t resist though, and I loved the idea of a mysterious girl with super ninja powers working a pretty mundane job. That was really Sparrow’s Hotel at its best: Satou using her powers to do things like squeeze juice, move mattresses with one hand, or karate chop an unruly guest into peaceful slumber for the night were all quite silly and amusing, and that’s really all I wanted out of this show. I even found the gloriously bad art (complete with bizarre art style change mid season) to be endearing for some reason, like this was some kind of lost animated treasure from the 90’s that the anime starved younger version of myself would have devoured wholeheartedly.
Unfortunately, Sparrow’s Hotel strayed too far what worked too often to be really considered a success. The episodes were just too short to waste on the side characters, who were generally pretty lackluster. Aside from Misono playing a good straight man, this needed to be three minutes every week of Satou using her powers for something incredibly ridiculous or incredibly mundane. There were just too many weeks that didn’t happen, and while I don’t regret watching Sparrow’s Hotel and reviewing it every week, I can’t really say I’d recommend anyone else do the same.
Lifesong I am glad this one is over. It wasn’t really worth the 3 minutes a week to keep up. Billy is pretty much the only thing of value that happens and he has maybe one minute of screen time total.
Recap: Muromi and the other mermaids contemplate different kinds of love and the current state of humans. Fuji-san refuses to give up on Muromi restoring her her tail back to its former glory.
Jel’s Thoughts: There sure were a lot of orgasms this week, huh? Pretty much half this episode was recycled animation of Fuji-san’s intentionally gross boobs, and yet somehow, someway, Muromi-san managed to make something of it. I really didn’t think we needed to revisit Fuji-san’s crush/obsession with Muromi and her tail and I still think we could have lived without it, but between that and their initial discussion about Kappa dude and moe snake girl the whole thing was so weirdly, hilariously perverse I couldn’t help but at least find it amusing. I mean come on, there was a literal dolphin orgy, how can you not laugh at that. Next week is the final episode, which is why I suspect we saw so much animation reused, and while I’ll be sad to see Muromi-san go I can’t way to see what madness they have in store for the finale.
Lifesong’s Thoughts: Dolphin orgy? Check that one off the list. I now have one more show that warrants the use “fishgasm” as a term. I am not sure how I feel about that. This episode managed to be funny, weird and awkwardly sexual all at the same time. Somehow Muromi managed to mix in a lesson about love and being true to yourself while also causing a masochistic mermaid to go into a state of near orgasm at the prospect of having her tail torn. We have one episode left and I will be very sad when the final episode ends