Quick Thoughts on: That Time I got Reincarnated as a Slime 1st Cour: Basic at it’s Best

I know this is a bit late, but I wanted to wait until the current arc was all but wrapped up before I did this.

There is much to be said about the all-encompassing popularity of the Isekai genre right now. Personally, I find it to be a venue to tell some really cool and unique stories but seems more concerned with creating middle of the road power fantasies that aren’t concerned with much else.

That has led to some truly good and even great shows. How not to Summon a Demon Lord was my ecchi anime of 2018. Overlord puts a unique spin on a standard formula with a unique hero, hell the more time goes on, the more I have come to really enjoy and respect In Another World with my Smartphone for simply being honest with itself (though it doesn’t make me forgive the forgettable female leads). But what about the big Isekai of the year? With the series about halfway over, let’s get into my thoughts of That Time I got Reincarnated as a Slime after the poster.

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Slime Time

If I could sum up Isekai Slime, it’s that it is Demon Lord’s less pervy brother. Both shows are examples of what happens when you polish the basic Isekai formula to an absolute mirror shine. Fourteen episodes in and it is clear that Slime is not going to be a deep or meaningful show in terms of its themes. What it has though is an absolute true upfront honesty of what it is, and the quality it shows towards that pays off in spades. This isn’t like Master of Ragnarok or Death March where the showrunners hope just being an Isekai will mean easy money. Slime has so far been a show where everyone has shown up to play and that alone is able to pave over some of the possible negative feelings some people might have overwatched yet another Isekai.

Despite being basic though, Slime has done some interesting things, most notably in the Shizu arc. While not a gory or mature show by any means, there have been some moments where I was legit surprised at how the show portrayed some the beats in the story. Shizu’s entire life from the start to the conclusion is filled with a bittersweet tragedy that is too often missing from shows like this. The ending moments of the arc, where our hero Rimiru bids farewell to Shizu and we get to see her come to a metaphorical peace is honestly probably one of the saddest/heartwarming moments of last year (I knew I fucking forget SOMETHING on my list).

Aside from that, everything else is standard Isekai fare with that spit and polish that made Demon Lord such a runaway hit last year. The character designs are unique enough to stand out, the other arcs have been good enough, and the decision to have a slower pace (being a two cour series of 12 episodes each) has allowed the plot to take its time where it might have rushed. I’ve enjoyed Isekai Slime a lot so far, and I’m really interested to see where it goes. Give a look if you haven’t already, or if you aren’t sick to death of the genre. This one is looking to be a real keeper.

I stole this image from Sean from Moe’s Sucks. But can you blame me? That lucky bastard.
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Quick Thoughts on: Lord El-Melloi II Case Files Preview Episode: Oh Shit, Waver’s Hot Now.

The Fate Franchise continues to grow and it looks like 2019 will be a good year overall. With the second part of the Heaven’s Feel trilogy coming out this month, Fate Grand Order somehow still making billions with anime adaptations on their way, and more and more merch. Fate Stay Night looks like it is entering 2019 strong and healthy and will continue to be.

One treat we got a few days ago was the preview episode for one of the more popular Fate spinoffs. My thoughts on Lord El-Melloi II Case Files is after the video.

After watching the preview episode, I am pretty excited about this. The Fate Spinoffs have always maintained a rather loose connection to the main Fate universe, and Case Files is no exception. While its connection is stronger than most, the show stars Waver Velvet, the only master who walked away from Fate/Zero in a better place, or you know…alive. The show is more about the now adult Waver solving cases involving the magic and politics of the Clocktower, complete with his own Saber looking partner. There doesn’t look to be any major references to the Holy Grail War or the events of either Fate/Zero or Fate Stay Night.

Honestly? I’m ok with that. Any chance to expand the world of Fate (yes I know there is the greater Nasuverse, but one thing at a time here) is welcome in my eyes. The world of mages and the Clocktower was always in the background of Fate Stay Night, so seeing how the rest of the world operates is going to be really fun to see. I don’t expect much on that front, but I love a good mystery as much as the next guy.

Besides, anime Severus Snape looks like he’s gonna wreck some shit. We’ll find out in Summer 2019, but the first episode makes things feel really promising.

Quick Thoughts on Senran Kagura Shinovi Master Tokyo Youma-Hen: Numerous Nude Ninjas.

I love Fanservice. I absolutely adore it.

The boobs, the butts, the midriffs, the thighs, the jiggles, the bullshit tropes, the comedy. Fanservice and Anime go together like PB and J, they are joined at the hip. Frankly, I do not believe the anime industry would be what it is today (good and bad), or successful as it has been if it didn’t have fanservice as one of the cornerstones.

Now that is not to say that Fanservice can’t be disruptive, or intrude on a story where it doesn’t belong. Anime is, can be and will always be successful it if doesn’t engage in fanservice. One of Fairy Tail’s problems is that it shoves in fanservice where it isn’t needed. Sometimes though, some extra fanservice can do a series some good, especially when the overall plot of the anime is rather dull. With that being said, let take a dive into Senran Kagura Shinovi Master Tokyo Youma-Hen.

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Great Poster, Long Ass Title

I have not watched or knew any part of the Senran Kagura franchise before this, and since this is a sequel to the first series, I came into this without much knowledge. However, from what I have seen and looked into, Senran Kagura is a rather clear-cut series.

It is at its best when the fanservice is cranked up to eleven when the girls’ clothes are about as durable as tissue paper. The idea of all these female ninjas fighting demons, being able to do amazing feats, but unable to keep their clothes on is the type of absurdity that makes the ecchi genre work. However it is at it’s worst when the series has next to no fanservice and is forced to depend on the overall plot and characters, which is..less than satisfactory. That is not to say that it is a bad story, just that it is a basic story. Everything I saw in Senran Kagura I’ve seen a dozen times in a dozen other anime and manga. There just wasn’t anything that stood out that surprised me, and when that’s all Kagura has, and several episodes are notably light on the TnA, then the show is just really forgettable.

Overall Senran Kagura was a solid addition to this year’s menu of Ecchi animes. While nowhere near as well done as Demon Lord or High School DxD, it had some great moments when it fully embraced the absurdity of being a show about smoking hot ninja babes. I just wish it had a bit more to say when it decides to not be about busty beautiful babes bouncing bashfully.

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Where was this on the 12 days of Ecchimas huh?

 

Quick Thoughts on: Date A Live III Trailer 1: Standard Dating Animation

Well, it’s better than that god awful poster made it out to be.

I could end it there, but I won’t. So my thoughts on the first trailer of Date A Live season 3 are right after the video.

I’m going to do my best to keep my animation expectations of this show low because the studio that did the last two seasons has gone under, and this was picked up and saved by Studio J.C Staff. In that case, I’m glad we are getting this when its future was very well up in the air. So yeah..I’ll forgive a lower grade of animation for another chance to step into the world.

Overall though, the trailer looks great, showing more of the harem aspects of the show, probably all from the first “reintroduction episode” I don’t know much about the plot, though it is going to be adapting two different arcs, with the second probably focusing on Origami, which I’m really interested to see.

So bring it on Date A Live III, let’s kiss some girls and save the world…again..

Quick Thoughts on: Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai: Melancholic Magnificence

There is going to be a lot said on this anime series in the next few weeks. Youtubers, Bloggers, and Reddit will have much to say on the quality, characters and story of this show. I myself have much I want to say on what I believe the long-term legacy of a show like this will, or won’t have on the anime fandom. Right now however are my quick thoughts on what is the hit anime of the season, and my tie for Anime of the year: Rascal Does not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai.

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A reminder to never judge a show by its poster.

So the big question. Did Bunny Girl Senpai manage to stick the landing?

Yes and no.

The final episode was good, great in many cases. Mostly because the characters we’ve followed all season are well developed and extremely endearing. The resolution of Kaede’s story is bittersweet and most of all realistic, holding true to the overall main thesis of Bunny Girl Senpai. It’s anime that has discussed realistic problems that real, realistic teenagers go through. While it was done with elements of science and science fiction, with some landing better than others. Senpai’s ability to be an anime about High School, but not an anime about an ANIME high school was its greatest strength. That carried through all the way from start to finish.

However, I can’t deny, minutes after watching it, that the final episode felt like they jammed two different story arcs together. Kaede’ story is wrapped up in the first half, and then the last is dedicated to Mai and Sakuta working out a minor relationship issue. All of it is good, touching and works well, as expected from this show. Yet it feels very much like they weren’t able to cobble together enough money (or plot) for an additional episode and just dumped it all into one. If they had been able to space out these two stories, then this would have ended perfectly. There is also the issue of Shoko and the foreshadowing of her role in the story, though thankfully there is a film coming that will carry things on.¬† ¬†Overall it’s a bit of a bummer considering how well this final arc was shaping up to be.

Rascal Does not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai is a truly wonderful and beautiful piece of work. I’ll be getting into whether or not it will have a long lasting legacy in a week or two (once my thoughts are finally solidified), but it shares the top spot for my anime of the year easily. Many fellow anime fans have fallen in and out of love with this show over the 13 weeks, but it has been a wonderfully calm, almost melancholic 13 weeks. This is a very,¬†VERY well done piece of anime, and if you haven’t checked it out yet, changed that at once.

 

Quick Thoughts on Uzamaid!: A Successful Tightrope Act

With the new year almost here, the anime of the season is starting to wrap up, which means it’s time for my Quick Thoughts on many of the series we are watching. The first on the list is the comedy series Uzamaid!

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Truly this year’s Circus Act.

I’ve said this in my previous looks into the series over the last season, but Uzamaid! had to walk an extremely difficult tightrope in trying to balance the unsettling premise, with the comedy and cuteness of the story. There was no way some people weren’t going to take a look at the poster, or the first episode and instantly drop it. I’m going to get into a bit more on this in my proper shallow dive in a week or two, but that position is more than understandable.

I’m happy to say though, that after it’s twelve episode run, Uzamaid! was successful in its tightrope act. It is both extremely fucking funny, and thankfully self-aware in the “creepiness’ of its premise. Kamoi Tsubume is one of the most comedic and original female leads this year and brings so much hysterical laughter to this series. The extreme lengths she’ll go to spend time with Misha just keep getting stranger and stranger, and the reactions and music the animators and show-runners use never get old.

Yet, Uzamaid! doesn’t rest completely on comedy, and instead opts to also be a touching and heartwarming story about grief, parental loss and the fear of moving on from it. Misha’s situation is something I expect a sizable amount of viewers may have gone through, and its portrayal in this anime is done extremely well. I was surprised just how much the final two episodes tugged at my heartstrings as Misha was forced to confront the fact that her mother really is gone, and that deep down she has always been ok with that.

Overall Uzamaid! was an extremely solid show, with only a little of the “mid-season dip” that other shows suffer. If the premise turned you off (and it’s ok if it did) maybe try to give it another shot and see if you can change your mind. There is more to this story than is suggested, and hell it might just give you a really good laugh.

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I have nothing to add.

 

Quick Thoughts on Heaven’s Feel: Lost Butterfly Trailer 3

Oh man, Oh man, Oh man.

This November, I did a month-long look into every facet of the Fate Franchise, and that included my thoughts on the first of the Heaven’s Feel movie trilogy: Presage Flower.

I recently watched the movie again (dubbed this time) and while I enjoyed it far more on my second viewing, my thoughts on the film remain the same: Presage Flower is 90% set up for the following two films. So it was my hope that the second entry: Lost Butterfly jumps right to the meat of things. The second trailer allured my fears somewhat, but now looking at our third trailer, I feel much more at ease. My thoughts after the video.

Oh man…

This movie is shaping up to be everything I was hoping for. With the pieces in place, Lost Butterfly looks like it’s going to crank things up to eleven and then some. I know what takes place in the Heaven’s Feel route; the darkest and most in-depth of the three, and I cannot wait for it come to life. With rumors that the director pushed heavily to include the erotic scenes (that have been cut from the novel’s re-release and pretty much scrubbed from the Fate canon), I am confident that this is going to be true to form adaptation, as best it can be, of the route.

I don’t do hype, but I am excited as hell for this movie. I cannot wait to see the story of Sakura Matou start to reach its zenith, cause hoooo man…shit is gonna get real. Regardless, Fate Stay Night, Studio Ufotable, and Aimer are a match made in heaven.