Her name is “Watery”…no foolin’….
|Well this episode wastes no time in wasting our time, as it pretty much falls in where the last one left off, giving us repeated motion as well as emotion, some bad guy and secondary character introductions/reintroductions that prove useless, and a battle between two allies that aren’t that had about as much point as a ball of yarn….|
Things Happen, the Clock Ticks…
Yeah, I’ve complained that this show has followed an outline, but so far, for the most part it’s followed a fairly decent one. This time around, it seems like afterthought came into the picture, as if they had about 12 minutes to kill and they added this stuff into the mix to pad out the time. There wasn’t a single scene in the first half that added anything of note that I found myself caring about all that much. Kiseki is pretty much a plot device and little else, but I’ll burn that one when the time comes.
Depth of field? Who do you think we are? Ghibli?
Ok, Takaru, we get you’re a good guy, and good guys don’t kill their sister’s even if asked, don’t need to rub that detail in twice. Next comes the confrontation with Kirigaya and Yoshimizu/Noel; which seems so tacked on that the animation team didn’t get the memo for the full rigging, nor did direction care to do anything with the “fight” that could be called necessary. Then along comes Kurugane, who really needs something to do, as his VA sounds like he’s falling asleep. We can round this out with two Valhalla operatives doing…things. I kinda like Watery just by the look of her, but her first bit of action on the show is basically a nothing exercise worthy of ellipses and little else.
…It’s OK, I’m sure she’ll be useful next episode…
Subtext: We Have Problems with Female Characters….
…the family just keeps inheriting shit…our hands are tied…
Ah, well, when you can’t get a good dowry, might as well demonize the whole gender, right? I mean, it was right there in the dialog wasn’t it? She just keeps growing back…women, can’t live with ’em, can’t kill ’em! Other than that we have the reveal that the Kusunagi clan is as interesting and as rigid as a paint-by-number set. Old school wanna-be samurai, with some demons’ mixed up in there. It’s a tragic heroes wet dream sort of background.
But then, the insult against the female part of the human race just doesn’t end there, as we get to our long suffering supporting cast of ladies. This is where they get to “share their half of the burden” that’s been hanging like a lampshade over them since the whole show began. I mean, why else have Kusuangi hauled off to jail for no discernible reason other than to have the others break him out and help him with his sister problems? Which have began and nearly ended so tropey they hardly bear any more thought than that….
But the rest of the supporting cast has bugs as well. Neither Kurogane nor Kirigaya have enough development to call them engaging. Kurogane fits into that aloof, “here til I’m out of the scene” characterization, and Kirigaya is the resident kill-kill-die-die don’t need a reason rage monster that seems to come with these sorts of programs like a pine-scented tree shaped air-freshener comes dangling from the rear-view mirror in a used car; and the fact that Yoshimizu is a Relic Eater is just a sort of “yeah, this is how characters are developed all the time” moment that you have to slap yourself in the head with and get over.
So, who do you want to win? Do you even care?
I feel that this show would have been an interesting slice of life style character study. I mean, there is probably a huge background story lurking out there somewhere in the….background…but they’ve got enough pieces in the foreground to keep anyone satisfied for a cour of anime. It has a decent amount of characters with their own motivations, and the place seems busy enough to keep them in stitches for quite some time. The magic seems dense enough that they could deal with it in a personal manner – which it seems is what they where aiming for with Mari, early on. But instead we got some of the worst of character building and set building foisted into one place.
…I mean, is there a reason for a “dark side” copycat?
…and what has this shithead done other than say, “I’m a fabulous bad guy!” a few times?
I don’t have a ton of faith that they can right the ship any time soon, so at this point, I’m just looking at the shape the caboose will be in come the end of the wreck….If I can mix my metaphors….