Gakusen Toshi Asterisk – 10

Asterisk - More robot manzai

I’d give even money that Robot Manzai would be as good a show as this

winter15-highw Team Kid and Loli have their fight, and the Designated Losers fulfill their role this week on Gakusen Toshi Asterisk.

About as Good as They Can Make It

Asterisk - I didn't think this would be more embarrassing

“And I thought I couldn’t be more embarrassed than when he saw my in my bra…”

Like it or not, I’m going to continue to complain about the way that Asterisk is presenting this tournament. It’s not that it’s being done badly, necessarily, but that it’s being done this way at all. This episode managed to wedge not two, but three tournament fights into a single episode, which doesn’t leave a lot of time for other stuff. They get a few things in on the margins, but first and foremost, it’s the tournament. And I think that’s disappointing, because as paint by numbers as the characters can be, they’re still not bad characters, and I think that a little more development would make for a pretty darn good story, rather than putting it on hold like they seem to be doing.

Asterisk - Never mind you have a light sword

“Cause my GIANT GUN is just as maneuverable as your sword!”

All that said, one fight was pretty good. another was acceptable, but the third was a fairly large pile of poo. The acceptable one was the first one, with Saya and Kirin taking on random cannon fodder from Jie Long, who are predictably Asian-looking, with the curvy blade and blousy pants. Basically, these two were hardly any resistance at all, with Saya even using a horrendously unwieldy-looking gun as a melee weapon before blowing the guy up. Not a contest at all, although you figured it wouldn’t be. It was made worse by the terrible commentary from “Nana-yan”, whose constantly extra-high-pitched voice just grated on my ears throughout as she spewed idiotic commentary, insulting Saya along the way. Not a good use for Yuuko Gotou, who usually has those high voices under better control.

Asterisk - Gimme a little sugar, Kirin

“Come on, Kirin, gimme some sugar…”

Asterisk - Ayato gets an Ayaful

Ayato gets an eyeful…

The Good and the Bad

Asterisk - The idols best moment

Their best moment, before they got beat down

The better fight was Ayato and Julis’s second round fight, which was Julis’ turn. She didn’t have the one-shot, two-kills move of Ayato, but she controlled the fight from start to finish against some random girls from Queeenvale who are more interested in being an idol unit named Non-Sugar. They make some half-hearted attacks, but are no match for Julis, who finishes them off one after the other. In between the two fights, there’s some character interaction, mostly notable for the loli fanservice and the fact that Ayato manages to not get smacked when he walks in on Saya and Kirin naked, after Saya was trying to grab a couple handfuls of Kirin. Not that it was his fault that Saya let him in, because she just doesn’t care. Or maybe it’s her way of appealing to Ayato, I dunno. Also, Julis tries to have a nice lunch with Ayato with handmade sandwiches, and it doesn’t go badly, but she just loses her nerve and chickens out after she manages to convey to Ayato that she’d like her head patted, too. It’s cute, but not really enough for me, and as usual has Julis sabotaging herself.

Asterisk - Vamping is a free action

Just that hint of lace in the shot, of course

But they saved the worst for last, with the show’s Designated Loser, Loser MacFail and his partner in tanking, Randy Hooke, taking on Irene and Priscilla Urzaiz. Outside of the arena, Priscilla rides Irene, trying to keep her out of fights, but in the arena it’s a different story, with Priscilla’s job basically do to nothing but refill Irene, after her Lux, the Gravi-Sheath, drains her blood. This means she’s some kind of pseudo-vampire, which really seemed like they just wanted to shoehorn a vampire character in there, since the path of replacing nutrients, or even fluid, through the stomach, isn’t particularly fast. The entire point of this “fight” was exposition, and it’s almost insulting that the show made a fight out of this. Randy’s contribution was to literally take a fall, pinned by the Gravi-sheath’s effect. That was after he and Lester ran around like they thought they were some kind of ninja, only to do exactly nothing. Then Lester just stands around while Irene shows off her vamping and then pins him to the ground, before forcing him to give up. Completely eye-rolly from start to finish.

Asterisk - Stand there and wait for it, Lester

“Hey, it’s ok, I’ll just stand here and wait until you’re done…”


Some good, some really bad, and a little bit of “cram in some character stuff between the fights.” One point that seemed like it was trying to set something up for the future was AR-D asking why RM-C can easily beat him, even though they’re similarly specced. Ernesta’s aside to us that RM-C is AR-D’s “limiter” makes me think that a future plot ‘twist’ is that RM-C will be disabled, and AR-D will go out of control. Of course, this will leave Ayato having to save everyone, because he’s the big hero. Maybe they’ll give Julis the same out and make the robots resistant to her fire again, but the end result will be Julis will be useless, because she’s a girl and has to be saved by the hero boy. Think this will happen? Or will it be something else? I dunno, but if it does happen like this, that’s a pretty sad predictably quotient.



Proving that you don't have to be young to love anime, I enjoy all genres and styles of shows. If it's not hurting anyone else, you should never be ashamed of what you like!
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8 Responses to “Gakusen Toshi Asterisk – 10”

  1. HannoX says:

    There hasn’t been enough Claudia lately. She’s the one character in this show who could actually be interesting if they developed her more and if we knew more of her motivations and why she says she’s not a very nice person. We’ve gotten some idea of that last, but not enough.

    Bring back the best girl, Asterisk.

    • Highway says:

      This show is very parsimonious with “other” things that aren’t about the exact thing they’re talking about right now. One place this shows up (and bugs me) is the fact that they won’t ever put anyone else in the Seidoukan viewing box. There’s no other students or tournament combatants that are interested in watching Ayato and Julis fight? Or in watching AR-D and RM-C fight? It’s *only* the named characters in the show who show up, and only those who are going to speak.

      But Claudia’s not in the tournament, so she’s not important right now.

      • HannoX says:

        But there’s apparently a lot going on behind the scenes of the tournament. How else would have a couple of robots been allowed to appear in it? Behind the scenes maneuvering is where Claudia should shine and that would probably be more interesting than the three matches we saw here.

        However, the trouble lies in the pacing of this show. Too much time was wasted earlier on things that could have been dealt with quicker or eliminated altogether. So now we get rushed fights in the tournament and the intrigue going on behind the tournament is ignored.

        • Highway says:

          I think there’s very little intrigue there. They did the part with letting the robots in when the heads of the schools had that meeting about 4 episodes ago, before Ernesta and Camilla met the protagonists.

  2. skylion says:

    Yeah, headbangingly horrible presentation. Vampiring is a Free Action has been in the “stupid and thoughtless” lexicon of narrative tropery for as long as these silly bloodsuckers have been in song and verse, but this episode took the bloody cake and ran laps. Jeez….

    But, thankfully two minutes of loliservice washes the bad clean away. I’d trade a gaggle of useless vamps for more loli…

    • BlackBriar says:

      Counter argument.

      • skylion says:

        Counter Counter Argument….

      • Highway says:

        So the counter-argument is “I like vampires, so it was cool”. Noted. He gives Lester far too much credit. Lester is a loser, who is just as strong as the writing wants him to be, because his entire point in the series is to be the guy who loses. He’s supposed to be a Page One, but so far he’s been trounced every time he’s tried to fight. He didn’t make a good showing here. He had a terrible strategy that made absolutely no impact on Irene. He didn’t even attack her. Not a single time. Not even when she took her time sucking blood out of her sister, who was entirely fair game in the fight, but nah, we’ll just wait and let her power up. Basically, he was humiliated and lost badly.

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