Frequent readers of The Null Set might have noticed a recent lull in posts. There’s two primary reasons why and I thought I’d mention them before continuing. The first is that I recently started reading the books that the tv series The Dresden Files (an urban fantasy series) is based on and I had a very hard time putting them down. The author of these, Jim Butcher, knows how to create great characters, do character development, and write a well plotted novel. In the last 10 days I read volumes 3-10 of the series which works out to something like ~2700 pages of reading. This by itself wouldn’t have slowed my posting down but I’m also suffering from some sort of head cold these last few weeks and the medicine leaves me groggy and tired so I’ve been having trouble with doing things more complicated then reading books and watching anime.
You should see The Null Set resume normal operations starting with this post because I started feeling better a couple of days ago and I have no more Dresden books to read. 🙂
This is actually about a 2.5 weekly anime review covering March 16 to April 2. I’ve tentatively altered the week covered from a Mon-Sun week to a Fri-Thur week. Too much anime gets released over the weekends and ending the week on Sunday or Monday forces me to watch these episodes too quickly – leaving me with nothing to watch during the week. It makes more sense to end the week at the natural breaks so that’s what I’ll do.
Maria+Holic, episode 11 – 10.5/12Strong A
Maria+Holic, episode 12 – 11.5/12A+(end)
Asu no Yoichi, episode 11 – 11.5/12Near Perfect
Asu no Yoichi, episode 12 – 11/12A+(end)
Michiko to Hatchin, episode 21 – 10/12A
Michiko to Hatchin, episode 22 – 11/12A+(end)
Clannad S.2, episode 23 – 10/12A
Clannad S.2, episode 24 – 8/12B+(end)
Rideback, episode 10 – 10.5/12Strong A
Rideback, episode 11 – 11/12A+
Rideback, episode 12 – 11/12A+(end)
Toradora!, episode 24 – 10.5/12Strong A
Toradora!, episode 25 – 10/12A(end)
Minami-Ke: Okaeri, episode 11 – 11/12A+
Minami-Ke: Okaeri, episode 12 – 10.5/12Strong A
Minami-Ke: Okaeri, episode 13 – 7/12B(end)
Munto TV, episode 8 – 7/12B
Munto TV, episode 9 – 6/12B-(end)
To Aru Majutsu no Index, episode 24 – 5/12C+(end)
Shikabane Hime: Kuro, episode 9 – 11.5/12Near Perfect
Shikabane Hime: Kuro, episode 10 – 12/12Perfect
Shikabane Hime: Kuro, episode 11 – 11/12A+
Kemono no Soja Erin, episode 6 – 11.5/12Near Perfect
Birdy the Mighty Decode 2, episode 8 – 10.5/12Strong A
Birdy the Mighty Decode 2, episode 9 – 10/12A
Zoku Natsume Yuujinchou, episode 11 – 10/12A
Zoku Natsume Yuujinchou, episode 12 – 10/12A
Sora o Kakeru Shoujo, episode 9 – 9/12A-
Sora o Kakeru Shoujo, episode 10 – 10/12A
Soul Eater, episode 49 – 9/12 A-
Soul Eater, episode 50 – 10/12 A
Chrome Shelled Regios, episode 10 – 7/12B
Chrome Shelled Regios, episode 11 – 6/12B-
Chrome Shelled Regios, episode 12 – 7/12B
Hetalia Axis Powers, episode 8 – 5/12C+
Hetalia Axis Powers, episode 9 – 7/12B
Hetalia Axis Powers, episode 10 – 8/12B+
Show I most want to see the next episode of
Shikabane Hime: Kuro
Thoughts and Highlights
These three episodes of Shikabane Hime: Kuro have gone a long way in making me forgive the early missteps of the series. The Shichisei (the group that killed Makina) have put their plan in motion to destroy the Kougon along with the Corpse Princesses and it’s a truly clever plan that even if the Corpse Princesses are successful in saving the city, they will still lose. Intelligent and crafty bad guys really improve a series – kinda like how Batman is a better series because he has tons of great bad guys and Superman has only a single bad guy worth mentioning. There’s also been several very big revelations made during these episodes. Some of the things we learn are the true past of Oori, what the creepy cat is, and what really happens when a Corpse Princess has killed 108 corpses. Without knowing how this show ends, a few of these revelations make the world interesting enough to warrant a third season.
I haven’t spent much time talking about Kemono no Soja Erin yet. The first five episodes left me on the fence if this show will be worth watching or not. At times it really comes off as being targeted to younger viewers but it also displays a sophistication in it’s story that seems aimed at older audiences. After watching episode 6, I think I’m definitely going to keep watching this show. From the information that was available before this started airing, I knew what happened in episode 6 was going to happen but that didn’t lessen the impact of the episode. Watching the stoic acceptance by Erin’s mom of the coming events and Erin’s naivety to the meaning behind her mom destroying the whistle she uses to train the fighting lizards and splurging on a very expensive dinner, it was so incredibly sad. I kinda feel bad now that I’d been wanting the show to advance the plot.
Now some short thoughts:
- With one episode to go before Soul Eater finishes, I can say that this last story arc has been a decent way to end the show but I can’t help but feel it’s been a little too absurd to take seriously.
- The last two episodes of Hetalia Axis Powers have shown marked improvement. I wonder how people in other countries feel about how their countries are represented in this show. I think the United States in here does a pretty job of reflecting at least part of the country’s persona.
- This far into Chrome Shelled Regios and it’s apparent that the show will never a great show but it does continue to be a decent show that has enough good things going for it (Felli and the Engrish scenes) that I’ll continue watching.
By making my series reviews as spoiler-free as possible, I often have thoughts about the ending that I don’t include but here’s a great place to include some, so:
- I breathed a huge sigh of relief when To Aru Majutsu no Index finished. It failed to live up to what it promised at the beginning and I’m glad to be done with it. It was never bad so I kept watching and hoping for it to get it’s act together but in hindsight it felt like a waste of time.
- I can’t really summon anger about Munto TV since I haven’t spent money on the franchise yet but it has been really disappointing. This 9 episode series felt like a thumbnail sketch of a 26 episode series or an even longer series if more time was spent on the war. I wonder if KyoAni will pull a Gainax and re-redo the series in the future.
- The ending to Asu no Yoichi was predictable but it still felt satisfying. The family subtext that appeared during the final arc probably made a deeper impact then it would have during other seasons because of Clannad.
- I was disappointed with the ending to Minami-Ke: Okaeri since it felt very similar to how Asread ended the second season and it didn’t work as good a second time. Also disappointing was the lack of a Hosaka daydream and subsequent creepy laugh scene. I’d be up for a fourth season provided Doumu (the season 1 animators) got to do it.
- I liked the recap episode of Clannad ~After Story~ if only because I got to hear Ushio’s voice again and because they reinforced my thought that Tomoya does remember the sad first ending.
- I really liked the ending to Michiko to Hatchin; by using a time leap, the show was able to be realistic yet end on a happy note at the same time. For some reason, I never really got into the show but now that I know how it ends, I bet I would enjoy this show much more if I rewatch it.
- The last few episodes of Maria+Holic were genuinely great episodes. If the series had been that good for it’s entire run then it probably would have ranked near the top for the season. These two episodes contained everything the show did right and the addition of the priest character felt like the final piece necessary for the comedy to really click.