The Roundup: Summer 2017 Volume 7

In this week’s installment…

Summer is nearly over and so is the anime season, but our Roundup shows are showing no signs of slowing down. It seems to be business as usual this week including Bahamut which has completely embraced the soap opera-y mess its become. I guess the “Cinderella Step” ending song was supposed to be literal?

Check out our full size coverage: Fate/Apocrypha | Made In Abyss | Princess Principal

 

GAMERS!
Episode 8: “Keita Amano and Karen’s Best Entertainment”

Thursdays 11:30 am EST on Crunchyroll

Jel: Much like last week, the first part of this episode really pushed my patience to the edge with the misunderstandings only to flip things around for the best possible outcome. Karen and Keita’s date is adorable, and there is something to be said for it being an actual date and not just calling it that. The wild card is Chiaki, who is the only one I can’t make out at this point. Marlin and I were theorizing that her sister was never actually there and she was stalking Keita, but why? Does she like him? Does she like Tasuku? I just don’t know.

 

Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul
Episode 19: “Shall We Dance?”

Fridays 10:35 am EST on Amazon Anime Strike

Jel: First up, can we agree to never count on Nina as the centerpiece of your plan? Second, if there was any remaining shred of doubt that Bahamut has turned into a soap opera-y mess then Favaro’s stare down with Charioce seals the deal. It doesn’t help they went all in on the Cinderella thing too, right down to Nina leaving her shoes. I guess we were supposed to take the ending song literally? About the only redeeming moment is watching Nina instantly bounce back from getting dumped instead of crying herself into a blubbering mess and having Favaro carry her out. That’s the absolute bare minimum of what I would expect though, so that’s not giving much credit. I hate saying this but ugh, I can’t wait until this is all over.

Rage of Bahamut – or Welcome to the Ballroom?

 

Welcome to the Ballroom
Episode 8: “Reality”

Saturdays or whenever they decide to air it on Amazon Anime Strike

Gee: We are quickly approaching ground zero for what is probably my singular favorite moment in a sports manga/anime in years, but that’s next week. As for this week, a lot more focus goes on the human element of competitive dance. Tatara’s lack of physical conditioning and muscle memory is a good reminder of how far he has to go, and it’s the kind of thing that helps ground Ballroom. His relationship with Mako continues to be the most adorable thing ever as both continuously apologize back to each other for their own self-perceived shortcomings. In a ways though, it also reflects the sadder truth of how both have been conditioned to act by various causes in their life, Tatara by his bullying and Mako by her difficult relationship with Gaju.

In fact, the highlight of this episode is both of them coming to the realization that constant appeasement isn’t the foundation of a healthy relationship. Both parties must not only extend their concern for each other, but also have the selfishness to make demands of their partner. It’s a healthy lesson for the duo to learn, especially in something as personal as dance. The advice of, “becoming the frame” is an important teaching that I really like about Ballroom and it’s treatment of dancing partners and how they intertwine with interpersonal relationships. The conclusion of what Tatara takes away from it is something I cannot wait to see next week.

Welcome to the Ballroom – They’re so precious together, it’s unbearable.

 

Restaurant to Another World
Episode 9: “Fried Seafood / Melon Soda Float”

Mondays 2:05 pm EST on Crunchyroll

Jel: The first half definitely dove too far into the whole modern convenience power fantasy that Iro so nicely explained a few weeks ago. Watching a master craftsmen stare in awe at a beer mug was a bit much. I really liked the second half though as anything that puts a spin on the usual episode formula is a welcome change. I like when the show finds common ground between the two worlds a lot more than when it says our world is better. As it turns out, magic wielding dessert princes also get shy around pretty girls just like a lot of dudes here. Shout out to his sister for egging him on like a real sister would and not being jealous, which sadly seems like the more common outcome in anime these days. Overall, not a bad episode.

 

Sakura Quest
Episode 22: “The New Moon Luminarie”

Wednesdays 12:00 pm EST on Crunchyroll

Jel: ​​I came across an article this past week that almost word for word matched real life to what has been happening in Sakura Quest, so this week’s episode hit me a little harder than usual. What I’m finding most interesting is that the show is not really saying there’s a solution to their small town’s problem, a point that was most explicitly stated this week. Staying or leaving is not about right or wrong, it’s about pursuing what makes you happy. It is a little sad that the shopping district will slowly fade away or that the outer villages will disappear, but that just may be the natural progression of things. As Sakura Quest nears its conclusion, I do wonder if they are going to stick to this open ended answer to the big question they’ve been asking. I think they will, and I also think that’s the right choice.

Kakegurui – Never trust a girl with literal stars in her eyes

 

Kakegurui
Episode 8: “Love Dancing Woman”

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

Jel: Taking a jab at the idol industry is a favorite anime topic in recent years and this episode doesn’t have anything new to add to the conversation. We all instantly knew Yumemi would secretly loathe her job and her fans. That said, putting on a layer of Kakegurui’s entertaining brand of stupidity still makes things fun. I mean, Yumemi literally has stars in her eyes and her Hollywood dream is the laziest character motivation I’ve seen in years. It sounds so dumb when you say it, but then it’s so satisfying to see Yumeko blackmail her into a game. I guess my only complaint is we don’t even get to see what the game is this episode, but I suppose that just gives us something to look forward to next week.

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