The Roundup: Spring 2017 Volume 2

In this week’s installment…

The slow but potentially good Atom: The Beginning joins the Roundup along with season 2 of The Eccentric Family, which has already proven its quality. Most everything else passes the three episode test save for Re:Creators, which Iro and I are still watching for some reason.

 

Sakura Quest
Episode 3: “The Cry of the Mandrake”

Wednesdays 12:00 pm EST on Crunchyroll

Jel: ​​I ended my thoughts last week saying I hope they don’t drag out Yoshino’s decision to stay and sure enough they took care of that very quickly, so episode 3 was moving in a good direction right from the start. In fact, Yoshino goes to the next level and really takes charge of the situation. With Kodata surprisingly willing to give up control of the situation, we were given the perfect opportunity to assemble the main team. It’s almost like they’re an Avengers style super hero group except their super powers are normal day job skills and instead of fighting super villains they are battling small town decline? Maybe that’s going a little far, but the girls all feel very strong and capable and I love it. Combine that with the charming injection of absurdity that P.A. Works has mastered with these types of shows and it makes Sakura Quest really enjoyable to watch.

 

Tsukigakirei
Episode 3: “Howling at the Moon”

Thursdays 12:30 pm EST on Crunchyroll

Marlin: Hah, I was so sure we were headed for an I like… fireworks moment, but boy did this show break expectations. I love how these clearly shy kids come out of their shells when doing their adorable flirting through text. It shows so much about their characters that they both simply lacked confidence between each other. Their interactions with their friends show they can be confident, but it’s always scary when you have a first crush. I feel it was a perfect transition in this episode with Kotaro getting the messages he needs to grab the bull by the horns. I don’t like superstition, but anything to get him to realize he has to seize his own happiness works out for me. We also see that this clearly isn’t some one-sided crush. While Akane may find Hira attractive, she’s been touched by Kotaro’s thoughtfulness. I suppose we’ll have to see if she’s ready to reciprocate those feelings so quickly, but man for Kotaro’s sake I sure hope so.

Tsukigakirei – my heart cannot take this

 

Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul
Episode 3: “Close Encounter”

Fridays 10:35 am EST on Amazon Anime Strike

Iro: I’m glad it seems like this show’s plot is starting to kick in, since I was starting to get a little bored. Only a little, though; Bahamut is still overflowing with charm. The arm-wrestling contest is a great gag in general, and it works surprisingly well to set up that King Charioce is no normal man, able to nearly match Nina in physical strength. It adds a bit more mystery to the question of why he’s so adamant about suppressing gods and demons alike, anyway. The Big Thing this week though is Nina namedropping FAVAROOOOO as her unscrupulous “teacher”, since he’s the only one of the main cast who’s been conspicuously absent so far. I still don’t expect him to show up for a while, but it’s nice to see the nod.

 

Re:Creators Millennium Princess x Kowloon Overlord
Episode 3: “Don’t Worry About What Others Said. Just Be Yourself.”

Saturdays 7:30 am EST on Amazon Anime Strike

Iro: I’m considering doing whole posts for this show, just so I can complain about it in a more comprehensive manner. Honestly, there are few worse ways to start an episode than by letting all the air out of last week’s cliffhanger (it brings back memories of Tokyo Ravens, of all things; not the most flattering comparison), and spending the front half of the episode on a meandering conversation makes Re:Creators feel like the worst kind of light novel adaptation instead of an anime-original property. It keeps bringing up potentially engaging concepts within the premise – like whether the author/artist creating new material will directly affect their now-living creations, or Selesia being spoiled on her own anime – but proceeds to do nothing with them before moving on. As the credits roll each week, I’m left with that sinking feeling that anything actually interesting about Re:Creators is a fabrication of my own mind, unintentional in the show itself.

Atom: The Beginning – This new Pokemon spinoff looks cool

 

Atom: The Beginning
Episode 2: “Bewusstsein”

Saturdays 12:00 pm EST on Amazon Anime Strike

Jel: Atom continues to move at a very slow pace. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. The bits with our two geniuses being misunderstood definitely drag. We get it, everyone thinks these guys are crazy and no one wants to give them money. I think the issue is we as the audience know that they’ve created something amazing, so having everyone catch up (including themselves) feels frustrating. Where it does work is when A106 is on screen. Something about a very calculated, deliberate, metal clashing on metal robot fight made this episode’s conflict carry more weight than if they were just flying around on screen. Also, Ran is a pretty tough girl. Ironically her and the robot are the most interesting, “human” characters at this point. So while Atom has yet to really hit its groove I still think there’s potential here, hopefully it will sort itself out soon.

 

The Eccentric Family 2
Episode 3: “The Scent of Europe”

Sundays 10:30 am EST on Crunchyroll

Marlin: I knew they couldn’t keep Benten out of this story for long. Things have gotten very complicated very quick, and the relative normalcy of the supernatural shenanigans we saw last season has been blown out of the water by the appearance of Tenmaya, literally a man broken out from hell. There are many concepts in this episode that I’m afraid I feel I’ve lost the context for as a foreigner, most especially the idea of “Yasaburo’s moon” that was able to be plucked out from the sky. Also, much more than last season we’re getting into the very formal nature of these creatures. It makes sense, as the supernatural is in a sense a connection with the “old ways” of Japan, and it is also fascinating to watch the delicate displays of niceties, even as the Nikaido dumps Benten off his couch, he does it with all the finesse and good manners one would expect of a Victorian Era drama. Since this drama is about Tanuki, Yasaburo cannot rely on the crude and jocular nature of his own kind, and plays along as the servant of these much more powerful creatures. With Benten back on the scene, and with her so quickly butting heads with the Nidaime, I can’t imagine this false sense of civility will last forever.

 lwa

Little Witch Academia TV
Episode 16: “The Trial of Pohjola”

Licensed by Netflix (Release pending, please watch it there when it comes out)

Gee: It’s cool to finally get an episode that focuses a bit more on LWA’s abundantly charming supporting cast. It’s a shame Lotte kind of gets sidelined in her own episode in favor of Akko’s character development that may or may not stick depending on how Trigger feels at any given moment. If nothing else, it’s neat to see an anime portray Finnish culture. While I’m sure it’s relying on a lot of cultural stereotypes, it’s always cool to see anime go out of its Japanese comfort zone. I hope we can get more episodes like this that give us some more insight into the lives of the other characters. On the animation side of things, honestly nothing too impressive here, but as always, LWA brings some good visual gags thanks to Trigger’s impeccable comedic timing.

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2 thoughts on “The Roundup: Spring 2017 Volume 2

  1. Suprisingly really good stuff this season! Atom certainly has potential and the robot battles coming up should be something to enjoy.

    I need not add more to Bahamut besides Favarooo! Of course he is Nina’s mentor.

    I’ve started to watch Eccentric Family, though with a tremendous amount of caution. I found the first season to be an absolute delight and really don’t want a s02 to ruin that. That being said I thought ep01 was ok “recap”, so to speak.

    WIth such a good season at hand not sure I could fit in Tsukigakirei, though your praise is forcing my hand .

    • My only warning on Tsukigakirei is that it is a bit slow, but it is really getting the awkward teenage flirting thing right in the most realistic way I’ve seen in a while. It probably makes me feel nostalgic more than anything.

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