Winter 2015 First Impressions part 2

Now for the shows aren’t terrible (and Aldnoah.Zero).

Tantei Kageki Milky Holmes TD

Well it took a long ass time for this to finally get subbed, but nevertheless, Milky Holmes is finally back for the 1st time since 2012 and when I say Milky Holmes I mean the stupid and Tolysless Milky Holmes. Not those abominations from Futari wa and Alternative that could actually get the job done without resorting to ridiculous methods. Unfortunately, one factor that’s been plaguing the franchise since the second season seems to have carried over here, that being an actual somewhat serious plot, except it’s about idols this time. For that reason, the episode was fairly dull whenever the Milkies weren’t onscreen. It also seems like there’s going to be a lack of 20 and the rest of the Gentlemanly Thieves, that sucks. But hey, one of the main characters from that shitty 3rd season was arrested, having been the only person crazy enough to sit through that shit in it’s entirety this made for good payoff. Hopefully she never comes back and they find an excuse to write off the other one. It’s the only way to repent for making Futari wa Milky Holmes canon.

Tokyo Ghoul √A

Tokyo Ghoul wastes no time picking back up from where the first series stopped, but I can’t say I’m terribly impressed with it’s return. Thing were going pretty well for the episode until around the halfway point where the climax to the Aogiri Tree arc just…stops. Folks who’ve read the manga to this point like I have will no doubt be disappointed by the fact that Kaneki’s encounter with Ayato was cut short of that one scene we were all looking forward to seeing. Beyond that the episode afterwards consisted of mainly characters standing/walking around being all mysterious or licking their wounds and bunch of static images with snow falling. What fun. The OST wasn’t half bad, but seriously that opening is balls, really? Having Kaneki awkwardly stare me down for a minute and a half is the best you can come up with? But hey, no censorship this week!

Death Parade

Recently had the pleasure of watching both this and Death Billiards in the same day. Simply put, what’s on display here is essentially Kaiji meets Mushishi  meets Bartender set in purgatory, and so far it’s about as cool as that sounded in my head. The only snag I could really think of while watching this that could effect the quality of the series as a whole is repetition. I mean really, are we going to get a new wayward soul with a sad story that needs to be debriefed after each game every week? Then the preview played and indicated that next weeks episode will be spent on fleshing out what I assume will be the recurring cast and effectively killed those worries. Pretty swell stuff if you like the idea of seeing folks being pushed to their psychological breaking point as they come to terms with all their past fuck-ups with splendid production values to make things all the more immersive. You could complain that the 1st episode in particular is a bit overdramatic, and I’d actually agree with you there. I found Death Billiards to be better then this first episode since it managed to tell the backstory of it’s central character with less dramatic exposition and it had a cool pool cue brawl with an old man. Still, if this manages to find a decent balance between fleshing out a colorful cast and finding new ways to drive wayward souls to their breaking point, then this is will be one hell of a winner. Also I don’t care if this OP doesn’t fit the mood, it’s fun, it’s classy, it’s great.
Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure Stardust Crusaders Egypt Arc
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They didn’t use Egypt: The Chains are On by Dio as the ending theme to a series about searching for Dio in Egypt, 0/10. Well, OK, the new outro isn’t really bad, just kinda low key and seems to portray the Stardust Crusade as a leisurely journey. I’ve got no problems with this, and by the end of the series it’ll have served it’s purpose as a purveyor of “the feels” but for now I’m sorely disappointed. As for the episode, it’s typical Jojo shit with stuff like a dude getting his head ripped off and stuffed into a water canteen and farting Boston Terriers for your amusement. Props to Iggy for being a dog that’s smart enough to avoid dying immediately in a Hirohiko Araki story. Oh and the new OP is pretty disappointing. Nothing will match Bloody Stream I guess.
Assassination Classroom
Sorta like Death Parade in that whilst the premise presented here in the 1st episode was enough to make interesting and entertaining first impression, but has me doubtful of whether or not the series can be sustained with that alone. Thing is, this is supposed to be 22 episodes whereas Death Parade’s only got 13. Given how this is based off of a now wildly popular Jump manga, I’m going to put my trust in the tastes of these strangers a bit longer and hope that there’s enough to this story to keep it from growing stale fast. If this ends up being GTO with an unkillable yellow kraken and armed children, then I’m all in but the pessimist in me says no.
Durarara X2

Durarara!! is back after it’s unexpectedly long four year hiatus. That said this episode wasn’t exactly up to all that much, we got introduced to a couple of whatstheirfaces that did pretty much nothing. Asides from that, this was basically an episode devoted to reacquainting the viewers with the cast/setting. Might’ve been fine for you guys who actually needed this, but it didn’t do all that much for me having just watched it a couple of weeks back. The most important things about this are basically little hints as to what’s to come here, the most notable being how Izaya seems to be making an effort to avoid Celty. Maybe he’ll kick off whatever plans he has for her head this season? The opening theme is entitled “headhunt after all. Also, was it always common knowledge that Celty’s bike was a actually a headless horse? I don’t remember that being explained in the 1st season. I always just assumed that the bike came from the black smog from her neck stump like her scythe and clothes. Anyway it’s more Durarara. The first season was a comfy show that’s never in much of a hurry to get to it’s plot and it’s likely that the sequels will follow suit. I’ll grant it a bit of a honeymoon period for now but the cogs need to get working faster here.

Aldnoah.ZeroCharactersareDead Season 2
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So yeah, the season premiere of Aldnoah.Zero did the obvious and completely wimped out of the last season finale, which pretty exposes that final scene as a desperate attempt from an incompetent and generic war drama to keep itself from being remembered only for it’s “Slaine is suffering” and “Slaine did nothing wrong” memes. If that’s not bad enough, we’re back to square one with this piece of shit. I think the biggest question I have coming off this season premiere is how in the fuck did did the Terrans last  a full 19 months without Inaho? Given that the Japanese military has proven themselves to be unable to so much as wipe their butts without him, wouldn’t it make more sense to get completely bodied by the advanced technology of the martians in under a week? Another thing about this time skip that bugs me is how little the show used it as an opportunity to change. Really, you could swap that “19 months later” time card with one that says “literally just a week later” and there would be little difference. Of course, Inaho recovering from a shot to the brain that quickly would be stupid, but him surviving a bullet through the eyeball at all is already ridiculous. Beyond that, everyone has the same personality as before, the military hasn’t developed a strategy beyond “stand, shoot, die”, Slaine’s decision to keep Sauzbaum alive is still a complete crime of against logic, more intrusive Sawano insert songs, and Inaho still super autist with all the personality of picket fence and is apparently the only one who knows how to fight Martians. That’s not to say that there aren’t a couple of new details, like Inaho gaining the Princesses power to activate the ship. It seems that all you need to gain Martian powers is a combination of Asseylum spit and a cliche tear drop for dramatic effect. OK show, why not?

WIND IN SPACE
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