I shipped it.
Spoiler alert: if this were a game of battleship… I would’ve just lost one of my ships.
Karneval, episodes 5 – 6
Well, what can I say, folks? I have no more an idea of where this story is going or what its even about, honestly, than I did before, and we’ve just about hit the halfway point. Either a second season is in the offing, or the producers were seriously hoping one would, as I can’t see any chance of this turning into something substantive at this point. The manga to date has twelve collected volumes, so perhaps this should come as no surprise. But it isn’t an excuse, either.
Gareki’s backstory is cliché and uninteresting. Tsubaki’s fate left me utterly cold, as did Yotoka’s. It was surprising to me when Tsubame did manage to wring some feeling from me – in a show that’s notable for how little it affects me, Tsubame’s sudden show of will and determination at the close of episode six was surprisingly well-done. Having watched her spend most of the two episodes crying or cowering, it was thrilling to get to see her show spine there, even if she did so while also accepting her eventual demise.
Oh, and the crab guy? That was actually pretty creepy, what with the claws coming out of his face. Yuck.
And, yes I did ship the twins – and the scenes Tsubame envisioned at the end of the episode certainly gave me more support for that!
Valvrave the Liberator, episode 5
I swear this show is causing a mass braincell die-off in my head. Every time I think it couldn’t get any dumber… it does! Its probably the most reliable show of the season like that!
So, let me get this straight – the power has gone out for the space station, and now its snowing and is cold… because the climate control unit is trying to correct itself. Because, um, the power grid overloaded… and there’s no power…. wait… what? And when they do go to reset the power, they treat it like its a big, difficult thing that they need some super-nerd to be able to handle, because everyone else is just totally outclassed! But all it is is hitting a big, red button. WOW, GOOD THING WE HAD A NERD.
There was also the sexism of this episode. Valvrave thus far has hardly been a bastion of progressivism, but I was a bit galled at how blatant it was in this episode – and, no, I’m not talking about the wet shirts, the teacher’s epic cleavage, or the stupidity involving the ojou-sama’s skirt. No, I’m talking about how the girls were running by in wedding dresses as their way of cutting loose in their new independence while the guys are drawing massive ecchi pictures and watching porn in movie theaters. Well, of course, bro! That’s just the way it is, y’know, bro? Bitches just wanna get married, dudes just wanna see tits! DUH!
But that really wasn’t the biggest bone I had to pick in terms of sexism in this episode. Oh, no, that was peanuts, really. My FAVORITE bit was how the boys are out to fix the power grid while the girls are left huddled in the classroom. The boys are doing important, serious stuff, and the girls are having a petty argument, immaturely picking at each other, the show cutting back and forth between ojou-sama being all angry that she’s been spoken to “disrespectfully” while the bully guy is bleeding and bleeding but refusing to let that stop him from helping the nerd guy hit the damn power button so they don’t all die. Its totally ridiculous.
The episode then caps itself off by ruining Rukino, the best character in the show, by having it turn out that, dun dun dun!, she has the hawts for Haruto. Sigh. Of course.
Oh, and ERRRUUU ERRRRUUUU-EFFFFUUUUU, remember him? Yeah, guess who’s been freely lurking around the space station for about a week and has been apparently forgotten completely by the entire cast? Ding ding ding!
Hataraku Maou-sama!, episode 2
Finally managed to get back to this one. Its an ok episode, but I think the first one was a lot funnier – the humor here isn’t handled as deftly, and there’s a dangerous sign of things actually becoming somewhat serious, which is downright alarming. Episode three looks pretty damning, too, which doesn’t help, given that it’ll apparently be about a date involving the demon lord and his big-boobed, moeeee co-worker. Ugh. Hopefully they don’t stoop to the usual stand-bys of “humor” in that one. I’m actually not interested in enduring it at all, but I ship the demon lord and his supporter hardcore, so, well, guess who is in it for at least a while longer?