In this week’s installment…
Dance With Devils teaches us that Chinese gangster souls taste better than roast duck, Miss Monochrome learns that strange men that pop out of giant tuna make great friends, and Osomatsu reminds you that everyone hates you because you hate yourself. Good times!
The Roundup is a weekly guide to all the “other” shows we’re watching this season. Check out our full coverage of:
Noragami Aragoto | One Punch Man | Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron Blooded Orphans | Comet Lucifer | The Perfect Insider
Jel: This may have been the best episode of Osomatsu yet, even better than the apparently now controversial first episode. We’ve seen the split episode format and the dark humor before, but we’ve never seen any attempts to show the brothers care for each other. The second half once again got too real, playing on the insecurities of becoming an adult but this time having the brothers actually be supportive was a brand new touch of sweetness we haven’t experienced before… to a point. The real best thing about this week’s episode is the final joke, cashing in an entire episode’s worth of build up for one single punchline. I don’t want to give it away, instead go watch it yourself and appreciate Osomatsu as the secret best show of this season.
Artemis: This week we were presented once again with an episode split into two distinct sketches, which I think I prefer to the shorter, one or two-minute gags, at least as far as this show goes. However, while the episodes feel much more coherent this way, it also means one half is almost certainly going to be noticeably stronger than the other, which is again what we got here. The first half was fine, and felt quintessentially Japanese in terms of its sense of humour (and if you’ve ever watched any Japanese variety shows, you’ll know exactly what I mean), but hilariously awful puns aside, it didn’t seem particularly clever or funny to me. Conversely, the second half went in a completely different direction by going for touching rather than funny – and weirdly enough, it worked pretty well! The whole scenario was not only believable but also surprisingly moving, and gave me a newfound respect for the series.
Dance with Devils
Jel: First off, just look at that episode title, LOOK AT IT! They used B-Boy as a verb and they are 110% serious about this. Once again I’ll let Artemis breakdown how nonsensical this episode was, I’m just going to bask in how much glorious “so bad it’s good” content we got this week. Between Mage (yes his name is Mage) aggressively rap-singing his intro tune and making borderline racist one-liners about Chinese gangster souls tasting better than roast duck, I was having a blast. I’m also finding it hilarious that despite all the kidnapping and what not they are trying to paint the Student Council as not THAT bad. First up you got Nii-san to compare with, who would probably be within his rights to cast Hama on everyone if not for his creepy obsession with his sister. Then you have Rem’s “I’m just following orders” excuse which is honestly pretty lame. And hey, at least Mage is honest about his desire to rule the world and keep Ritsuka as a possession, so he’s totally an OK guy, right? Let me stop there, shut my brain back off, and keep enjoying this every week.
Artemis: I’m going to write my thoughts on this week’s episode in bullet points – not because I’m lazy (well, okay, maybe a little), but mostly because this episode felt equally as incoherent.
- Do any of the student council members go to class, ever, or do they just hang out in the school library for kicks?
- I get that each episode is meant to include some kind of dance reference, but given that Mage looks about as much of a b-boy as Justin Bieber, I’m not sure it really worked out this time.
- Yes, Mage refers to himself in all seriousness as ‘ore-sama’, putting him in the same company of such fine examples of masculinity as Prussia from Axis Powers Hetalia, Black Star from Soul Eater, and Dragon Ball Z’s Vegeta.
- How did Ritsuka even get into that costume? Or rather, why did she, if she was so opposed to having dinner at a swanky Chinese restaurant with Mage in the first place? Also, I have no idea how she got back into her school uniform after sneaking out, unless she just kept it conveniently in the bathroom or something on the off-chance that she’d need to make a run for it.
- Where even are they? I’m pretty sure I remember seeing Tokyo Tower nearby, but there’s no Chinatown in Tokyo. No doubt there are plenty of Chinese restaurants to be found, but the odds of also running straight into a gang of… well, gangsters right outside, speaking (cringe-worthy) Mandarin and dealing drugs in broad daylight seem fairly slim.
- These guys have a pretty random and vaguely-defined set of powers. Urie can create illusions and hypnotise
peoplewomen. Mage can apparently throw electric bolts around and teleport himself and others just about anywhere (but probably only by walking through the underworld or wherever first). Rem can, uh, scowl at people. We don’t know what Shiki’s speciality is yet, but going by his personality, my guess would be torturing small animals.
Miss Monochrome – The Animation Season 3
Jel: I’m sure I was missing all kinds of Japanese cultural references in this episode but wow I love when this show gets weird. I guess that makes two (possibly three if you count Girlfriend BETA) tragic and weirdly romantic friendships for Monochrome this season? My only question is whether Magurou was a reference to something or were they really just making a pun on the Japanese word for “tuna”. Between that and Monochrome’s idol team that I completely forgot existed fawning over DJ Colorful, it made for an appropriately bizarre spin on the hot springs episode that only this show could deliver.
Jel: As I’ve said before, Oikura’s backstory would probably be a lot more compelling if we hadn’t tread similar ground twice before. At the very least you could argue she’s coping with it better than Hitagi or Hanekawa. As crazy as she is coming off, it’s not like she turned into a cat monster that murders people in the middle of the night. That said, I’m sure there’s still some supernatural shenanigans going on with the disappearance with her mother, whether they are caused by Oikura’s anxiety or not. The clear connection that Ararararagi makes between the “locked room” her mother stayed in with the one he was trapped in during episode 1 implicates Ougi in this mess, but it is unclear exactly how. I’m still hoping that part becomes interesting, as Oikura’s story itself isn’t doing it for me. But hey, there’s always next week with Monogatari!