Weely Digest: 6/10/12 – Mobile Suit Gundam AGE, Kimi to Boku 2, Haiyore! Nyaruko-san

[sage]_Mobile_Suit_Gundam_AGE_-_35_[720p][10bit][7EB21D3E].mkv_snapshot_15.01_[2012.06.10_17.29.46] [HorribleSubs] Kimi to Boku 2 - 11 [720p].mkv_snapshot_20.37_[2012.06.11_14.44.50] [HorribleSubs] Haiyore! Nyaruko-san - 10 [720p].mkv_snapshot_11.25_[2012.06.11_16.46.44]

The idea that Ishihara might not be human actually explains a lot.

Mobile Suit Gundam AGE – 35

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Things are definitely getting interesting on AGE, as the pieces for what look like the last extended arc are falling into place.  I’m once again struck by how emotionally tone-deaf Flit is.  telling Kio that his father is alive – and then telling him never to mention his name again?  Seriously, Gramps?  I certainly don’t blame the old man for feeling betrayed, but that’s just not something you say to a child.  Fortunately, it looks as if Kio is beginning to feel the stirrings of rebellion against his Grandfather – it even looked as if he was going to tell his mother Asemu was alive, before his Aunt intervened. 

With Asemu’s message revealing the existence of the “Cursed Treasure” EXA-DB (really – you’re going to play that in front of the entire crew?) the McGuffin we’ve been chasing for 35 eps has finally appeared.  It explains a lot – where the Vagan got their tech, (probably) how the AGE system works, and why the Asuno family is so vital to all sides.  And all sides are now on the hunt for it, and with its trove of weapons data sure victory in their conflict.  Especially interesting is the fact that the Vagan have changed their strategy to capturing the Gundam (now new and improved with VIPER mode) – and it looks as if they may succeed, judging by the preview.  That would certainly be a fascinating plot twist, and a great chance to see how Kio reacts when exposed to viewpoints that aren’t Flit’s.

Kimi to Boku 2 – 11

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Kimi to Boku has a funny habit of developing the side characters more than most of the main cast.  It sometimes works pretty well, and this was one of this episodes where it did – with the focus being on Mary-saki and Matsushita, Yuuki’s shota kouhai from the manga club.  I was about to write something about how funny it was that a girl whose charms are so…elusive, like Mary, draws so many suitors, because it seemed like Matsushita was developing a crush on her.  But then events reminded me of just how much Matsushita crushes on Yuuki.  If there was any doubt after last season’s episode, it’s pretty clear now – imagining Yuuki on the volleyball court and blushing is about as big a tell as you could want.

I’m fine that Matsushita likes Yuuki romantically, because the way it’s portrayed here isn’t mocking or mean-spirited.  I confess I’m a little irritated though that Masaki continues to pursue her pointless crush on Shun, whose disinterest is matched only by his cluelessness.  Still, the main point of the episode isn’t the romantic subplot but the issue of her having no friends, which her participation in the sports festival committee seems to be helping with.  She did seem less socially inept then usual, gushing over Shun as Matushita swooned over Yuuki, and she seemed to actually draw the respect of her sempai on the committee.

The festival itself was fun too, my favorite part being Yuuki’s usual slacker disinterest suddenly flowering into frenzied competitiveness when Yuta spikes and gives his brother a cocky smile.  Of course, as usual, it seems as if Yuta knew exactly what he was doing, and motivating his brother was the plan all along.  He also didn’t seem to mind Kaname slapping him on the ass afterwards.  Speaking of Kaname, looks as if his fans will finally get to see him get some development next week, as the ep apparently focuses on his infatuation with the neighbor girl.

Haiyore! Nyaruko-san – 10

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Wow – they did it, they really went there. 

I admit I’d be strongly biased in favor of Haiyore! this week for going after Ishihara and Bill 156 head-on (something I’m surprised more anime haven’t done) even if it hadn’t been funny.  Fortunately I didn’t need to worry about it, because this was the most fully recognized parody of the series, and the episode that came closest to achieving the potential in the premise.  It was frequently hilarious even when it wasn’t political.

In the first place, this is the first time I can remember that a body switching episode is explained perfectly by a premise – with the Yith involved, this is all canon stuff.  Beyond that, it was ingeniously woven into the comedy, with the Yith “extremist” Isurugi – in Yoichi’s body – planning to do a mass mind-switch so the Yith will have access to “creators who excite video sharing sites and popular artists within illustration communities”.  Once I was off the floor I was hit with the great “Space CQC Jammer-Canceler-Breaker-Eraser-Confiner-Obstructer-Buster-Closer” exchange, which fell comfortably within the “so stupid it’s funny” umbrella.

All that was the miso soup though, because the full bento box was when the “Space Child Guardian” arrived on the scene.  I’m sure I don’t have to recap the whole Bill 156 debacle – there’s plenty of Google fodder if you don’t know the details – but I don’t think it’s been directly mocked in a mainstream anime like this.  We have the extremist wanting access to Youtubers and hentai fanart, used as a tool by the aforementioned Guardian, who wants to destroy Earth as punishment for corrupting the youth of the galaxy with anime and manga.  Totemo oishii desu!  This is parody that cuts the target to ribbons and actually makes sense with the plot of the series – all I can do is offer my heartfelt congratulations. That’s how anime comedy should be done.

For dessert, we get plenty of character-driven comedy too, like Nyaruko’s troll job to steal Mahiro’s (still in her body, of course) French-kiss virginity – which turns poor Hastur and Kuuko to stone.  And Mahiro’s “The punchline was terrible again”, leading into the preview voice-over talking about “three little sisters moving in” as Yoichi (voiced by Papa Kiki’s Hatano Wataru) telling Kurei “I wish you’d listen to me!”.  The line between stupid and smart is sometimes very thin,  and Haiyore! hasn’t always quite found that sweet spot , but the last couple of episodes have been right there – and for me, this one was the best so far.

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9 comments

  1. A

    I can understand you thinking that Mary is annoying, but was it just me or was she much more tolerable than usual this episode? I actually found her very cute and charming, two words I wouldn't normally use for her.

  2. Her annoying side was definitely toned down, yes. I wouldn't go so far as cute or charming, but definitely an improvement. I think the implication being that being socially connected mellowed her out.

  3. A

    As soon as Shun to Mary he doesn't fit the ideal Volleyball player image I was right their with the guy's think "yes you do Shun." I feel so mean but get such a kick out of the guy's pin him as a girl, but at the same time it's never mean spirited from the group.

    My favorite part was the cat and the girl "your in my spot human…"

    I think Yuuki became disinterested because her got so good in sports when he was younger their is no challenge fore him. Yuta wake up call was a good way to spurn him on.

  4. I

    When Bill 156 was passed last year it was called the death of anime and manga but nothing much has happened yet has it. At the very least nothing in the short term has. Animes like High school DXD still air despite them being what the Gov wanted shut down.

    In fact if you look at this wonderful 2012 we've had so far as well as a good finish to 2011 could have been as a result of the bill. Still a great joke to pull though.

    Enough of that because Haiyore was ridiculously funny this episode. The second best so far after that into the game episode.

    KtB's episode this week will have garnered the biggest fujoshi (of which I am not) squeals of the second season thanks in no small part to Matsushita. Who decided that alongside Soul Eater and FMA this would go along nicely? Good lord. Chizuru centric episodes are the best, although the Kananme ones are good too.

  5. B

    Yeah I was going to say. Considering that bill was supposed to go into effect almost a year ago I sure don't see much evidence of it's existence. The genres that stood to be affected by it most still appear to be going strong, so I'm not sure if they passed it and then didn't bother enforcing it or what. That said, the fact that it exists at all is obviously terrible if you believe in freedom of speech as much as I do. 20 years ago it was rock music that was "corrupting" the youth (hi, Tipper Gore!), today I guess it's video games and anime, 20 years from now it'll be something completely different and everyone will look back on the video game and anime bills and laugh. Same shit, different day, and history just keeps right on repeating.

  6. The issue is, and always was, that the bill is worded so vaguely that it's unenforceable. I never believed the Sankaku nonsense about it being "the death of the industry" but I did worry that it might discourage publishers and studios from releasing certain works – and there have been a few cases where it has. But as time proved that the law has no teeth, that may fade as a risk.

    The two most prominent cases I know of where the "morals committee" actually investigated specific properties were Yosuga no Sora and ToLOVEru Darkness, and in both cases they basically did nothing.

  7. I

    Gotta love Sankaku's side bars though.

    If they didn't do anything to Yosuga no Sora (which was hentai) then I guess I can relaxing knowing that bill 156 was just a scam to get concerned parents to vote for Ishihara and his party.

    What will corrupt kids these days is gonna be crap like Jersey Shore and Keeping up with the Kardashians.

  8. b

    Fucking EXA-DB. What a bad name for that hidden/cursed treasure. Though I should have known the bad sense of naming in AGE ever since we were introduced to X-Rounders in Gen-1.
    And I would have liked it if the EXA-DB's contents of blueprints be kept a secret a bit longer like in Unicorn's Laplace's Box. The point of blueprints and data seems a bit lame to me. Oh well, let's see how Kio being captured plays out.

    Speaking of AGE, that was definitely the AGE device Yoichi was holding when he activated that…thing. Plus the phrase the narrator keeps saying at the end of each episode. Add a colony drop and lolz.
    And now I support Kurei in her love for (presumably) Mahiro. That part in the dating sim episode where they were in the gym storage was kind of a sign. Though it will never happen coz Nyaruko got ahead with that hot French kiss, I always love supporting underdogs just because 😛

  9. m

    Finally a kaname oriented episode! Woo ~ Another heart-break for him I betcha.

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