Gakusen Toshi Asterisk – 11

Asterisk - An offer I wouldn't refuse

This is an offer you shouldn’t refuse, Ayato

winter15-highw Let’s talk about Gakusen Toshi Asterisk first this week, for an episode that shows that when you take a step back from the fighting, you can fit in a lot of good story elements.

Who is Irene Fighting For?

Asterisk - Cliche Train

Cliche Train’s Comin!

When Ayato goes looking for Saya, he instead finds Priscilla, who isn’t content to just have to run away from some nanpa guys, she actually has thug who are intent on harming her. But Ayato, because he’s the hero, saves her by jumping up onto the rooftop. I guess that Priscilla’s not a good enough Genestella to be able to do that. Of course Irene shows up ready to kill Ayato, because even though the show’s good with the cliches, it still uses them. It even tends to play them like a trading card game, with the “Imouto defuses Onee-chan” trumping the “Wrong Impression by the late-arriver.” But that starts an interesting little story, after Ayato’s taken off the hook by the minimal appearance of Team Kid ‘n’ Loli proving his sincere intentions.

Asterisk - Fruitless Confrontation

Pretty empty threats from Irene

But we learn a lot more about Irene as the show focuses on her for the majority of the episode, with a lot of direct and indirect information given. Perhaps the most interesting bit, long term, is that Irene is beholden to Dirk Eberwine, the guy in charge of things at Le Wolfe (it’s hard to tell what Dirk is, he doesn’t seem like a student, but could be), since he saved Irene and Priscilla a few years ago. He even got her into a contract to pay back a large amount of money without using prize money from the Festas, a move that’s designed to keep her in his thrall for as long as possible. So she gambles to get money (usually not a winning strategy), and uses the Gravi-Sheath, which seems to have a bit of a dark edge to it. And we’ve even seen her losing herself to the glowing eyes which would seem to be the effect of the Gravi-Sheath on her psyche.

Asterisk - New friends

“What, you’re feeding him?”

Claudia Gets Some… Attention

Asterisk - It's snuggly time

It’s snuggly time!

Well, at least it’s some attention, for a couple short periods. The show even opened with her and Ayato having a few moments alone, ostensibly for her to congratulate Ayato and Julis getting out of the qualifying rounds of the Phoenix Festa. And just as she’s getting a little snuggly, he gets the call from Kirin to let him know that Saya had wandered off. And of course the herbivore Ayato takes the chance to extract himself from Claudia’s attentions. I think she’s right to be hurt, since the instant someone calls he’s ignoring her, and her “Hmf!”of indignation is well-deserved, even as she lets him off the hook with a smile.

Asterisk - snap out of it

Finally waking up

But her bigger scene is later in the episode, as Ayato makes yet another late night visit via her balcony. But for this one he’s greeted by quite a different experience than Claudia warm from the shower. Half awake, she attacks him with her Ogre Lux, Pan-Dora, only stopping when he finally touches her. We then finally get some information about Claudia’s relationship to her Lux, which is one as demanding as any. Wanting to experience the moment of death of its wielder, Pan-Dora puts the holder through death after death as they sleep, a harrowing experience that has kept no other person from using it for more than three days. Yet Claudia has been able to withstand it, and even claims that she’s gotten used to it after more than 1200 “deaths.” She even admits that it has perhaps the worst personality among the Ogre Luxes, when Ayato asks about the Gravi-Sheath. I like her personification of the Luxes, and it really seems that she is holding something back about the Gravi-Sheath. And to wrap up our time with Claudia (probably for the rest of the cour), we get one final rejection of her, as she invites Ayato one more time to spend the night with her, which he one more time chickens out of.


I’ve said before that I’d love to see Claudia be a bit more obviously honest and forthright about her feelings toward Ayato, and while this might have been the most sincere she’s been in propositioning him, it was still a bit coquettish. She did extract a promise from him to be her teammate for a later Festa, but even in that, he invites Julis along. The show seems to have kind of a weird relationship between Ayato and Julis. There’s definitely a bit of a like there on Julis part, although I’d have a hard time saying she’s in love with him at this point. It’s more like she’d enjoy being on some dates with him and seeing where it goes. But in contrast, Claudia seems to have some sort of background with Ayato that we don’t know about, and is definitely interested in him liking her more than he does. I’d like to find out what that is, but I’d also like her to have a better chance.


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!
Blinklist BlogMarks Delicious Digg Diigo FaceBook Google MySpace Netvibes Newsvine Reddit StumbleUpon Twitter

7 Responses to “Gakusen Toshi Asterisk – 11”

  1. zztop says:

    Who is Irene Fighting For?

    This should be revealed in next week’s final episode. However the Phoenix Festa lasts for 2 more volumes, which should be covered in Season 2, Spring 2016.

    Claudia has been able to withstand (the Pan-Dora’s torture).

    Claudia didn’t mention one important fact to Ayato about her nightmares. This is only covered in Vol 9.
    Show ▼

  2. sonicsenryaku says:

    “The show seems to have kind of a weird relationship between Ayato and Julis”. Is that a nice way of saying that mc boy and mc girl dont have any real chemistry; that the show is forcibly putting the two together because the tropes dictate it so; that MC boy’s declaration that his duty is to protect MC girl came out of nowhere and it’s just following a checklist of cliches; that the more interesting characters in shows like this get sidelined…yea i agree too

    • Highway says:

      I don’t know if I’d say they don’t have any chemistry. It’s more that the show is going down this weird kind-of-semi-exclusive route, where Julis and Ayato are partners in fighting, and maybe Julis would like to bring love into it, but she’s too embarrassed about it. And Ayato’s too clueless to pick up on signals, which only further embarrasses Julis. I don’t know if there’s any credible love interest with Kirin or Saya. And Claudia seems to think that Ayato’s mostly hands-off because of Julis, although I would say that if she said “I want to be your girlfriend, not your fighting partner” the idea that Julis is Ayato’s girlfriend would be the farthest thing from his mind.

      Mainly it’s this last thing that I kind of wish the show would do: Have Claudia come out and say “I would like to date you and be your girlfriend.” Set up an outright conflict and make something happen.

      • sonicsenryaku says:

        yea that’s the thing; claudia kind of just backs off because she feels that julis is more important to ayato, which would be all fine and dandy from a viewers perspective if the narrative actually made it feel natural that these two have a strong, meaningful bond. But i just dont see it because it’s not that well delivered. And like you said, kirin and saya arent really viable love interest so that just leaves the most interesting character in the series relatively speaking, claudia, who doesnt get much screen time. I find that she is pretty honest with her feelings even tho she doesnt outright say “hey, I like you man”.

        • Highway says:

          I agree that she’s honest with her feelings, I just continue to think that her biggest issue is probably that she feels she’s unworthy. So even though she lets Ayato know she’s interested, it’s always couched in “my terrible personality” and aggressive, almost slutty, tactics, which I feel like she *knows* will scare him off and sabotage her advances.

          • sonicsenryaku says:

            good point; I also assume that pandora being compatible with her reinforces her notion that she has a terrible personality. She has such a heavy burden yet she smiles through it all, trying her best to be nonchalant her circumstances

  3. HannoX says:

    Great to see Claudia return and learn more about her. Damn, she must have one tough personality! Imagine having dreamed your death over 1200 times and knowing you’ll dream it again the next time you fall asleep and still remain sane. Plus, she must still get in a good night’s sleep most of the time since she’s not thin and haggard with massive bags under her eyes. Yep, one tough personality!

    That must be one MAJOR reason why she still uses Pan-Dora. I imagine we won’t learn what it is until near the end of the next cour, but I’m really interested in learning what it is.

Leave a Reply