Week in Review, 7/27 – 8/3

eccentric family ep 3

 

Guess it’s a good thing the Friday Fellows aren’t into frog legs.

Not as much this week as I would’ve liked to have seen, but unfortunately my wireless adapter croaked midweek, so no Symphogear for me.

Ranking of currently watching summer shows (no Symphogear since I’m behind):

  1. Free!
  2. Eccentric Family
  3. Day Break Illusion
  4. Watamote

Obviously if I were up-to-date on Sapphogear, it’d be number one, two, and three.

Watamote, episode 3

I’ll admit that I found the first half of the episode of this episode pretty dull – sure, there’s the same biting edge there, but watching Tomoko angsting out under the cover in the rain got old after watching her do so for five minutes. Second half of the episode was a lot funnier.

Eccentric Family, episodes 3-4

I have a hard time explaining why I like Eccentric Family as much as I do. Its a solid, unshowy affair that has, week in and week out, rather quietly fleshed out its characters and their relationships with one another. When you get down to it, it really is a slice-of-life show with some fantastical elements about a family that is past its “glory” days. I think my favorite character is the brother who is stuck as a frog.

Poyopoyo, episodes 1-2

Well, a bit late to the part on this one, although apparently right in time for Crunchyroll to be hawking the merchandise. Its cute, its lighter than air, and it fills nicely the need for an anime about cats (previously Chi’s Sweet Home and Nyanpire fit that bill). I can’t see myself writing about it in future weeks at all, although I will still be watching it, though, since there’s nothing to say about it, honestly. Good for fans of spherical cats (although I’ll confess to liking Momonekosama from Tamayura better).

Day Break Illusion, episode 4

Y’know, this hasn’t been a subtle show to begin with, but this episode took the cake a bit when it that. I continue to find myself oddly engaged by the material, but this marked the first time I laughed throughout much of the episode. The rapid-fire pacing seen in episode one also made an unwelcome return, and Seira progressed from merely boring to outright obnoxious with her petulant, single-note insistence that the folks who get possessed by Daemonia are weak, awful people who deserve their deaths. Too bad she won’t be going anywhere fast.

Best part of the episode was easily when the bell fell on the guy during the funeral after it was hit by lightning. That was pretty perfect.

Ayakashi Ayashi Inferno OVA

Six years after this one hit, and I’ve finally managed to watch it; I saw the first two episodes back when they were originally released, but Bandai picked up the show, halting the fansubs. When Bandai was still kicking around, I got the third boxset for the series, as it included the five OVA episodes, but its been languishing on my shelf for a while. What brought me to finally pop the disc into my computer the other night is anyone’s guess, but I’m glad I finally did.

I suspect that these episodes contain material that was originally meant to be part of the TV series, and that the storyline was modified to fit into five OVA episodes since the TV series was canceled halfway through. Like the TV series, this OVA has some weird pacing issues in spots, although it isn’t nearly as egregious as the bad pacing the TV series suffered from. It also, unfortunately, ends up undermining some of the development that the characters experienced in the main series, and, really, ends up detracting from what the ending did. At the same time, the mood is somewhat melancholic, matching the TV series, as we get a reminder that the characters don’t really have a place in society, and that their position has worsened because of events during the climax of the series.

On the other hand, the ending here throws a complete curveball at the audience in a sequence that is in utter “WTF?” land. I’ll note that this is especially so since while the series had required a lot of attention be paid to keep track of the politics at work, it had never been the type for headscratchers.

But, well, even though this was a pretty average OVA, I was happy to spend time with characters I liked a lot once again.

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