Another excellent and very funny episode of KtB this week, and something of a return to the slightly bent quality the series has displayed at times. It seems that this show is getting quite a bit raunchier of late, what with Chizuru’s happy dream last week and a whole bunch of focus on sex this week. There was even some open discussion of the subject, with Yuuki pointing out a magazine article which stated that up to one-half of teenagers have their first sexual experience before high school (a fact, you’ll note, that Chizuru took as quite a hopeful sign despite being a third-year himself).
I worry about all our guys, TBH, as only Chizuru seems to have anything remotely resembling a normal sex drive (unless you count crushes on cafeteria ladies in their early 20s). I couldn’t help but muse as the karaoke was playing out, and Fuyuki was touching Mamiya’s breast in one room as Yuuki was fondling Shun’s earlobe in the other that Fuyiki really wasn’t the one we should be worried about. The karaoke scene was generally one of the best in the series – Kaname’s dirge about being an honor student, and Yuuki and Chizuru as the most mismatched duet ever. And then you have Yuta patting Shun’s leg as they sang… Certainly, this show is the only one of its kind.
Seriously, though – just what is Shun’s deal? He’s almost too much to believe – whatever his personal preferences are (at this point all signs point to “none of the above”) is it really possible for anyone to be that much of a pure-pure boy? Not only is our national treasure completely inexperienced and seemingly disinterested, but he’s almost alarmingly naïve. I mean it’s sweet and all, but really – is that healthy? I think the wrong brother is worried about the wrong brother in that household.
Mobile Suit Gundam AGE – 32
If you want a thoughtful, incisive look at the evils of using children at soldiers, you’re going to have to watch Eureka Seven AO – guys in hooded cloaks paying off spies with sacks o’ gold to care for a sick relative gives you a pretty accurate picture of the subtlety level with Gundam AGE. Still, at the very least the Shanalua character may have forced Kio to realize that was is not the heroic and fun game his Grandfather tried to make him believe. It wasn’t handled with particular distinction but at least the truth is out there now, and Kio is going to be forced to make some choices. She may have been a spy, but Shanalua was the only one who seemed to be willing to call out Kio’s situation for the grotesquerie that it is.
This, of course, sums up part of the problem with AGE – it’s pretty much a story of adults acting stupid and cruel and kids paying the price for it. That may be just the point but it’s somewhat repetitive to say the least, and the fact that no one seems to ever learn (while that may also be just the point) can get pretty frustrating. What the humans and Vagan need is someone to come along like Moe Howard and bang their heads together a few times, though I doubt even that would shake much sense into them. I like Kio – he seems like a good kid and he’s clearly the victim here, but the story is going to hinge on whether he rises to the occasion and puts an end to these frustrating cycles. Maybe he’ll have a little help from his father in doing so before too long – the sooner those pirate mechs get here the better it’ll be for the story. As is, there’s only so much interest I can muster up in yet another invasion plan I know Zaeheart is going to screw up because, well – he always screws them up.
Haiyore! Nyaruko-san – 07
“The rats in the walls… The window…”
This was about as close as we’re likely to get to a “serious” episode of Haiyore!, I suppose. It was certainly romantic – and of course I’m talking about Shanta-kun and the stingray. Even though this was more low-key than any episode so far I did laugh more than I did for the first few, starting with Mahiro forking Nyaruko roundly to save his cherry. That didn’t stop her from declaring their night a success at breakfast, however, and eventually winning Mom’s blessing.
I was frankly surprised that Mahiro didn’t react with more suspicion to Cthulhu’s takoyaki stand in the first place. I mean, really – “octopus” being prepared by a Great Old One? Very, very bad idea – but it can’t be any worse than haggis, I guess. Most of the episode was turned over to by far the most serious interaction yet between Mahiro and Nyaruko. She made quite the pest of herself, even by her standards – first with all the marriage talk and then sticking to him like glue – and he had a very natural breakdown and told her (she did, ask, after all) that he didn’t like her. Alas, this drove Nyaruko’s sanity points dangerously close to zero and Yoriko shamed him into apologizing, which led to their first “date”. The turning white trick worked for a while, but Mahiro drew the line at going into the sex museum.
If this is really going to turn into an actual romantic comedy, I’ll be interested in seeing if it can maintain the charm its had through most of the first seven episodes. Nyaruko is basically annoying as hell when she’s in stalker mode, Mahiro is a tsundere, and then we have the yuri and shotacon angles vying from attention from the outside. Can Haiyore! work with the main pair as an actual couple? I suspect things aren’t going to be quite as down-to-Earth most of the time as they were this week, which is probably for the best – it was a nice change of pace, but the show is better when it completely lacks sincerity.