Epsiode Focus: Scum’s Wish episode 8, Sweet Refrain

And to think I was disappointed with Mugi last week.

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This weeks episode of Scum’s Wish saw the culmination of the plan for our two protagonists to confess to Akane and Narumi. And in a totally unsurprising turn of events, things did not turn out how Hana and Mugi expected them to. What’s worse is that Mugi – who takes the role of colossal anime idiot #1 – was completely aware of the situation, but went ahead with it anyway.

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Episode Focus: Scum’s Wish episode 7, Lots of Love

Ah, shit. Now every member of the cast is officially in the gutter.

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I feel like I say this every time I write an episode focus on Scum’s Wish, but this show is grim. Before this episode, the only example of happiness so far has come via Akane’s twisted satisfaction with ruining Hanabi’s dream of a perfect first love with Narumi. Episode 7 gave us a second, equally distasteful, moment as Moka apathetically dreams her way into a perfect date with Mugi.

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Episode Focus: Scum’s Wish episode 5, Destruction Baby

About three weeks ago I wrote a first impressions for the Winter 2017 season and to be honest, I wasn’t that impressed. With one exception – Scum’s Wish (or Kuzu no Honkai).

Five episodes later I can’t say anything else from this season has grabbed me at all but Scum’s Wish is proving that I was right to be excited about it. From the outset, you could see that it was a show that was going to be dark, depressing and devoid of any hope or redemption for it’s main characters. Not only has this tone been maintained, but episode 5 has definitely been the darkest so far.

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This episode is one full of desperation. Hanabi is desperate for anyone to the point where it has become hard to tell if she still has genuine feelings for Narumi at all. After sleeping with a past lover, Mugi begins to question the extent for his feelings for Hanabi which, of course, are thoroughly rejected in the way that we have come to expect from our lead female and narrator.

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Episode Focus: Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress Episode 1 ‘Frightened Corpse’

It’s not really the done thing to write reviews of shows after only one episode has aired but with Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress I couldn’t help myself. Taking up the Spring 2016 noitaminA slot and having the privilege (?) of being the first anime to stream through Amazon Prime, Kabaneri is a steam punk style anime that sees humanity stuck behind walls hiding from some terrible man eating monsters.

I know what you’re thinking – that sounds just like something else I know… Well hold that thought, I’ll get to it a little later!

Main character #1 Ikoma seems like a decent enough guy. Almost inspires you to rebel against the system yourself, until you see the blood that is.
Main character #1 Ikoma seems like a decent enough guy. Almost inspires you to rebel against the system yourself, until you see the blood that is.

The main character of episode is rebellious ‘steam smith’, Ikoma who as well as servicing the locomotives that allow humans to travel between stations (essentially human settlements) is trying to create a weapon to kill the Kabane.

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Charlotte Episode 11: Charlotte

In the past few weeks Charlotte has become this season’s anime to watch. What started off as a nostalgic Angel Beats! throwback has grown into a twist filled, action packed, feels heavy train ride into the trials and tribulations of Yuu Otasaka and those around him.

After last week’s episode it was hard to tell where the show was going with it’s final three episodes. The show had seemingly resolved what could have easily been a problem for the whole show. But this is Jun Maeda. So things won’t stop happening until the end of the thirteenth episode.

Very few things in anime are completely pointless.
Very few things in anime are completely pointless.

The episode opens by skipping the opening and reintroducing Yuu (again) and Mayumi to their older brother Shunsuke. For the first time in the show Yuu actually makes the decision to reflect on the scenario he has found himself in as well as what he has just been through. Compared to episode 7, Yuu shows some independence and maturity, while inwardly thinking of Nao, showing again the effect she has had on him as a person.

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Seraph of the End, episode 11: Reunion of Childhood Friends

At the end of the last episode the inevitable happened, Yu and Mika met each other again. Perhaps unconventionally so in as much as Yu stabs a cursed gear through Mika’s chest. That left us all waiting eagerly to the resolution in this weeks episode.

Touching, shame they realised after Yu stabbed Mika.
Touching, shame they realised after Yu stabbed Mika.

What becomes clear from this episode are two things: firstly, Mika sees his relationship with Yu as somewhere on a fine line between brothers and lovers and, potentially more importantly, Yu has something else to worry about that may be even worse than his own demon, Ashuramru.

This is another high intensity episode as the vampires led by Ferid and Crawley continue the fight against the human army.

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Sword Art Online II, Episode 9: Death Gun

Things are really starting to hit crisis point in Sword Art Online II in episode 9. Death Gun has made an appearance in BoB, killing one player before disappearing.

One of the noticeable things about this episode is that, for a supposedly high action episode, there is a lot of talking and not all that much action. The episode quickly become about finding and stopping Death Gun before he kills anyone else. However, getting from the bridge to the city in which Death Gun is located takes the whole episode- what’s the problem with that you ask? Well in amongst this travelling is some talking amongst Kirito’s SAO friends about how bad Death Gun probably is, Sinon having a bit of break down about the possibility of dying and Kirito himself becoming so ridiculously OP in what comes across as showing off in front of Sinon.

Temporary truce between Kirito and Sinon. Because no one saw that coming.
Temporary truce between Kirito and Sinon. Because no one saw that coming.

That isn’t to say this isn’t an enjoyable Sword Art Online episode. The artwork and animation is as crisp as usual, and that over powered sword fighting I mentioned from Kirito, it is pretty cool. Sinon’s ongoing fear of the incident in her childhood is managed reasonably well and works really well with the cliffhanger at the end of the episode.

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Seraph of the End, Episode 3: The Demon in Your Heart

After watching the first two episodes of Seraph of the End last week I was very much looking forward to the the next episode in what is looking like a very promising show. After being accepted into the Moon Demon Company at the end of last week’s episode, today’s (or yesterday’s depending on where you are) episode saw Yu doing his utmost to get a weapon.

I’d hazard a guess that Seraph of the End isn’t going to go down as a writers masterpiece, and I say that here because of the opening of episode 3. After receiving a love letter from a fellow class mate, Yu is lectured on the benefits of developing relationships and ‘illicit sexual relations’ by Shinoa, before he demands a fight to take her Cursed Gear (the weapon used to kill vampires).

I like Shinoa already, keep putting the over confident hero in his place!
I like Shinoa already, keep putting the over confident hero in his place!

The 2 or 3 minutes these events take range from awkward to vaguely amusing and does show off Yu’s desire for revenge, however, it all seems like it’s been stuck together in a funny way. For the most part I’ve got good things to say about the episode, but the start didn’t quite work for me.

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Absolute Duo Episode 11: Killing Game

I wanted to write a review of the latest episode of Absolute Duo, as I’ve been trying to catch up to Funimation’s Broadcast Dub (which as a concept, is a fantastic idea by the way). Putting myself in that position however has left me disappointed, as this isn’t an episode that nails the combination of decent plot and ecchi charm as earlier episodes of the show did. But here I am, so what can I do.

As the penultimate episode of the show we are getting down to the crux point of plot this time around. Miyabi has reappeared having accepted a demonising type power from the Rebels. Unfortunately for our group the trade off is that she wants to kill them all- including Tooru, who she claims to love. After losing the extra guards for the conference, our heroes are forced to fend her off before being sent away by Tomoe, who insists she can get through to her because of their duo connection. Ringing out the clichés for all they’re worth at this stage it seems.

She's not looking particularly friendly right now.
She’s not looking particularly friendly right now.

Tooru and Julie go on to fight K. Fitting with the main motivation of the show up to this point the battle sees Tooru ending up in distress because Julie is hurt in the fight. Using the serum he received in the previous episode, he levels up his blaze to level 4 becoming a seemingly indestructible human shield before defeating K with his mighty fist. What was that I was saying about clichés?

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Plastic Memories Episode 8

Along with Is it wrong to try to pick up girls in a dungeon? I’ve been watching Plastic Memories as the first two shows I’ve ever simulcast. This week it was episode 8 of the latter, and dear god, the feels train is only getting faster and faster.

After last weeks episode we saw Tsukasa and Isla go on a date at the amusement park. Along with the revelation that Isla’s retrieval date is in a months time, episode 8 is Tsukasa trying to find some hope that after that, Isla’s memories might be restored.

Once their lifespan expires, all Giftia's need to retrieved and their memories wiped.
Once their lifespan expires, all Giftias need to retrieved and their memories wiped.

After going on an assignment where an older lady asks Tsukasa for her Giftia’s body to be renewed with a new OS, Tsukasa starts asking the team if it’s possible for a Gifita’s memories to be restored. The resounding answer? No. Michiru is most absolute as she alludes to feeling the same in regards to her own father before he was retrieved. Another opportunity for Tsukasa to find out some information arises when one of Eru’s old friends (also a Giftia), arrives from Section 3 for a job, but with a new OS, meaning she doesn’t recognise Eru.

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