Koi to Uso – 07
I’m fairly close to running out of patience with Koi to Uso. It seems pretty clear the series isn’t really interested in approaching its more compelling elements seriously – they’re more a condiment, with the actual dish being the cliches and fanservice. What that leaves behind at this point is mild curiosity (mostly about just why this messed-up government has decided to fuck with Yukari so badly that the have a division dedicated to it). But mild curiosity only gets you so far.
I’ll give the show another episode or two to loop back to what made it relatively engaging in the first place, but unless that starts to happen next week I don’t expect I’ll be covering it. Who knows, maybe I’ll be surprised.
Youkai Apartment no Yuuga na Nichijou – 07
By contrast, Youkai Apartment no Yuuga na Nichijou continues apace, always endearing and entertaining without ever hitting it out of the park. This series is surprisingly subtle for a LN adaptation, preferring to go for the steak rather than the sizzle. It’s full of interesting twists and turns that you don’t necessarily see coming.
Knowing that this is a two-cour series makes the deliberate way in which it introduced Hase easier to understand, since it’s very clear from the OP and ED that he’s an extremely important character (if not a co-lead). He and Yuushi are really more like brothers than friends, to the point where one could almost argue he’s the only family Yuushi has left – except for the fact this his uncle’s family clearly has feelings for him. But like many brothers, the two could hardly be more different. And the more we see of Hase in action, the more formidable he seems – to the point where he’s actually a bit frightening. If he ever thought Yuushi were truly in trouble, I get the impression he’d go as far as he felt he needed to in order to protect him.
As for the “Petit Hierozoicon“, Hase’s quick recovery time from the shock of its existence is all the more evidence he’s not someone to take lightly. It doesn’t have much that would prove useful in a fight – in fact without Hase it seems Yuushi wouldn’t have found anything in it to save himself from the biker banchou. Even Cerberus is a mere pup, and Death looks like a Jawa rather than a reaper. But that’s actually a blessing in disguise, because as Akine later tells Yuushi, the spirits in magical books suck the life force from their master in order to manifest – if these were the full versions of elemental spirits, Yuushi would pass out cold just from summoning one.
The training sequence is one of those interesting and unexpected detours Youkai Apato engages in. It’s a surprisingly realistic and systematic depiction of meditation training – right down to homemade waterfall Misogi and the effects of alpha waves. I’ve seen this phenomenon happen – experienced “time loss” during the act of meditation – and it’s pretty freaky. But if it means not dying early from being a magic user, it’s well worth it. What seems clear now is that Yuushi is indeed a boy with strong spiritual power – and that Hase is going to be fully brought into the world Yuushi now resides in. The potential for interesting developments is strong with this series, and I’m looking forward to seeing how it explores that potential.