Week in Review, 2/9 – 2/15

macross 7 dynamite ep 1 b

Another week in the weeb life.

I’m behind on most stuff, including Wizard Barristers, even though I quite like that show. This is what happens when you watch Macross 7, bros. Which I finished, by the way.

Buddy Complex, ep. 5-6

This show is stupid. Its also still rather bland, especially for a show that includes in its terminology stuff like “Nice Coupling”. Put another way, I’m tempted to say that this is just evidence that Sunrise could never make something like Aquarion EVOL, although I then wonder if stuff like Mai-Otome would seem to argue against such an assertion. But, hey, Mai-Otome sure was a long time ago, huh?

I can only guess that anti-fraternization policies don’t exist in the world of Budcon based on these two episodes. Lower enlisted openly go ga-ga over officers and enthusiastically cling to them in public places. I know its a bit foolish to grouse over the lack of an anti-fraternization policy in a fictitious military (especially since not all actual militaries have them, anyway), but whenever this stuff pops up it grates a bit because inevitably it involves having female soldiers act like moronic groupies. Being a woman in the military presents enough challenges without shit like this reinforcing this notion that women are flighty twits, even when they’re soldiers.

Anyway, episode six is basically a combo of pilot NTR’ing and Sexual Harassment in the Military 101. Fromm should’ve had his clock cleaned for making the comments he did to the XO. Uguu uguu, Dio so jealous desuuu, another guy has come along to Nice Coupling with Aoba! That really was the entire episode. All it really lacked was some key blushing moments from Dio when he was going all dere~dere~ toward Aoba.

Glass Mask (2005), ep. 1-5

Having finished off Macross 7, it was time to pick up another older show. I’ve had a few people recommend Glass Mask to me a bit recently, so I figured I’d give it a go – I reallllly liked Yumeiro Patissiere, and this does cover similar ground, as there’s a girl who doesn’t show much talent for anything who then discovers a talent she has and must overcome the low expectations of those around her to flourish. The difference, of course, is that Glass Mask’s manga hails originally from the late 70’s/early 80’s, so you’ve got that high melodrama in the mix that YumePati lacked; Ichigo’s classmates can be a bit nasty, but they’ve got nothing on the folks surrounding Maya. Its the supporting cast that is making it really hard for me to enjoy this thus far, as they go beyond simply being typically unpleasant toward a vulnerable girl into over-the-top shittiness. Maya’s mother throws a kettle of boiling water at former actress/acting teacher Chigusa, then tells Maya she’s the one being selfish and that she’s officially disowned. A co-worker can’t just foist an impossible task on Maya, she has to then chuck the promised prize into the air so it gets blown into the sea, leading to Maya swimming after it on New Year’s Eve. If it was just one character being ridiculous, or even a couple, I could probably roll with it, but 85% of the cast? Then its just irritating.

I’m sticking with it at least until episode ten, though, because those who’ve watched the entire thing reallllllly like it. I just hope some of the melodrama relents a touch.

Macross 7 Dynamite OAV

WOW. This was totally fucking awful! This should’ve been great, its all about Basara playing his guitar at freaking space whales, but for every delightfully goofy scene there are about ten scenes of crap. A lot of what happens, too, is utterly pointless – there’s this entire bit about Mylene getting roofied and nearly being raped by some Evil Psycho Lesbian we’ve never met before, and it quite honestly comes out of nowhere. One moment she’s having an early dinner with this woman, the next it turns out there’s a bed basically in the dining room. WTF? Basara ends up semi-comatose so some loli can drag him around the woods, then strip him and herself and hop into a hot spring with him. Gamlin, predictably, goes to look for him despite the fact that he could’ve just not and the end result would’ve been identical. And then there are a bunch of space whale poachers because, well, why not? And I’m not even touching on the fact that Ray undergoes an asshole make-over here, as he scolds Mylene that if Guvava hadn’t been able to fetch himself and Veffidas, she probably would’ve been raped! But, hey, at least she learned a lesson… which, uh, I guess is that if both your male love interests disappear into space, then you’ll probably be sexually assaulted by lesbians. Really, Ray???

I can’t even recommend this to completists. Even comatose Basara couldn’t save this, and I’m into injury moe! I loved Macross 7, but this is a total piece of shit. Also, the music SUCKS.

HAL

I’m still considering doing a full review for this, so won’t go too much into it. I quite liked it; made me cry a little bit, even! Its also fairly short for a movie (an hour with the ending credits included), so if you’re on the fence about whether to watch it or not, you may as well. My only real beef with it is that Kurumi’s cheeks being perpetually red is pretty annoying, especially when paired with her puffy, Barbie-like lips. Oh, and someone dying when a plane explodes seems a bit over-the-top when a car accident would’ve achieved the same result and is something that actually happens to people multiple times per hour instead of, at most, a few times per year.

The Garden of Words

I actually followed up watching HAL with getting to The Garden of Words. They go well together, as both are fairly bittersweet, although Garden leaves more room for future romantic brightness than does HAL. After finishing, I thought, “Hmm, hope Vertical picks up the manga – 5 cm per second has done really well for them, so there’s got to be a chance they’ll grab Garden.” And guess what? They announced their acquisition of it yesterday! It’ll hit shelves in the autumn. I kind of more or less loathed the 5 cm per second manga (except for the first arc), so here’s hoping Garden’s manga adaptation is a few cuts above that.

Again, I’d like to write a full review of Garden, so haven’t been getting too much into it. I like Shinkai’s efforts generally, but I think Garden is better than any of his other stuff, honestly. But, hey, I might just be a sap for this sort of bittersweet thing.

Gundam Wing, ep. 1 – 5

Writing that idiotically long post about Gundam made me interested in re-watching a lot of the Gundam I have liked, to include Gundam Wing, so here we are! I was a small bit concerned going in that this would prove to be one of those shows that shouldn’t be revisited, but I’ve been enjoying it so far. Certainly it gets a bit chuunibyou’d out at points (mostly whenever Heero is involved), but it isn’t anywhere nearly as bad as the folks who loathe the thing claim it to be. The Gundams are stupidly overpowered though; pretty sure this is the most overpowered they ever get in the franchise.

I came up with a rough ranking of how chuu’d out the Gundam pilots are themselves, and it goes:

  1. Heero    =    Wufei
  2. Trowa
  3. Duo
  4. Quatre

Heero and Wufei are absurd. I get that Heero was raised from practically birth as a soldier, but he makes folks like Sagura from Full Metal Panic look down-to-earth by comparison. Wufei is just as bad, and his whole misogyny shtick is repellent in the extreme (he’s also a hypocrite, of course, which doesn’t help). I remember hating him the first time I watched the show but had managed to forget quite how bad he is. Duo might himself have the whole “shinigami” thing, but he’s much more down to earth than the folks who rank above him in the chuu’d out rankings; that he expresses disgust and disbelief when Heero resets his own broken leg more or less says it all. As for Quatre, well, I suspect he’s probably one of the characters in the show that audience members were least likely to wish they were, quite frankly.

My only regret in re-watching this is that I don’t have someone to re-watch it with since I could really go for some shrieking about shipping. 2×4! And I like Relena, and I like shipping her with Heero, something which easily could’ve gotten me killed to admit at cons as late as 2006 or so. I guess this is where I ask you to picture sunglasses floating down onto my face as the words “DEAL WITH IT” appear beneath my chin.

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5 Responses to Week in Review, 2/9 – 2/15

  1. Caraniel says:

    Aah you’re making me wanna rewatch Wing again! I don’t much like Relena, but she and Heero go together well. I shipped 2×5 – Wufei is repellent, but paired up with Duo he becomes bearable (my liking of this pairing is probably mostly fanfictions fault) 😄

    • A Day Without Me says:

      Ughhhhh, the only reason anyone ships 2×5 to begin with is that time Duo asked Wufei to keep him company while he died (and then he didn’t anyway, so, yeah).

      I think Relena and Heero work bizarrely well together – the romance is set up in a way that just makes a lot of sense for a pair of fifteen year olds, even if as an adult it looks utterly ridiculous.

      • Caraniel says:

        Duo’s upbeat personality balances out Wufei’s bitchy attitude – I quite like the contrast.

        I agree that as they are as a couple of 15 year old weirdos Heero & Relena work remarkably well as a pairing – not one of my favourites, but I’m certainly not against it.

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