Amazing Stranger Review Episodes 3 + 4

When sexy anime figures go to war?

Episode 3

Okay, I’d be lying if I said this was a good episode. By itself it doesn’t do much with just two skits. The first being Bouida’s sister interviewing Nona and the second involving Bouida going out to Christmas dinner with an old friend and getting into a fight about anime. Both sections work well enough, although Bouida’s sister seems way too fixated on her brother’s love life.

What this episode really cements though is that there is a potential for the premise to be more than a one trick pony though whether they do anything with this or not still remains to be seen.

Where Amazing Stranger is slightly elevated beyond just being background noise is in the genuinely warm relationship being formed between Bouida and Nona. While it isn’t as heart wrenching as some anime couple’s out there, there’s still a fierce loyalty and sweetness to their affection and that’s probably the show’s greatest strength right now. Where it fails is that it can’t decide if it wants to use sex to sell or stay on the safer side of the line and the end result is something that probably doesn’t meet the needs of either the fan-service fans or those who prefer more wholesome viewing.

That and the comedy is far more miss than hit.

Still, the dinner scene and the arguments between two old friends and anime fans, one who denies everything and looks for faults and the other being a hopeless dreamer, is kind of fun to listen to and while I’m sure most anime fans don’t get worked up enough to flip a table in a restaurant, I’m sure most of us have had sillier arguments with our friends over anime at some point.

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	A.I.CHANNEL 1/7 SCALE PRE-PAINTED FIGURE: KIZUNA AI A.I.CHANNEL 2019

Episode 4

That was actually a pretty good twist at the end of this episode of Amazing Stranger. I’m not going to get into what happens but I kind of hope next episode continues from this point and doesn’t just scrap the plot line and go on to the next set up because that was kind of fun.

Anyway, this week Nona and Bouida are being sickeningly sweet together so naturally another figure shows up and attacks. Watching Nona explain reality to the new figure and the new character’s interpretation of what it meant was fairly good and the fight sequence that followed between the two figures was actually pretty entertaining.

However, the punch line of the sequence was Bouida solving the problem by opening the character’s in-game stat screen and unequipping all their best gear and then playing dress-up with them. Honestly, this is another of those moments that while it is kind of amusing is also kind of creepy. What makes it kind of work is that at least all the other characters point out that Bouida is the worst for his actions even if they were effective and neutralising the threat.

For those who have felt the keen absence of solid fan-service both the dress up sequence and the subsequent bath sequence kind of fill that gap, though quality fan-service it really isn’t, not that I particularly like any fan-service but fairly lazy and uninspired fan-service is definitely worse than just the usual fan-service.

But as I said at the beginning, the episode ending was pretty solid and I definitely appreciated it. I’ll appreciate it more if episode 5 moves on from that point.

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Karandi James
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Amazing Stranger Review Episodes 1 + 2

Definitely not Toy Story.

Amazing Stranger Episode 1

Episode 1

It’s a short comedy anime about a guy who buys a figure from his favourite anime who comes to life. So yeah, not exactly calling me to watch it. Then given how many minutes of the twelve minute episode here are devoted to him feeling up his ‘doll’ which leads to her top being removed and her going into self-defence mode and blasting holes in his couch, there isn’t a lot of promise here.

The one thing it does have going for it is by the end of the episode he’s decided to play along with her belief that she’s a visitor to the planet and he’s manipulated the situation through his understanding of the anime so that she thinks he’ll be useful. The premise of her ‘exploring’ earth with him is kind of intriguing, made more so by the hint that she’s actually probably telling the truth about being a visitor to the world. There’s definitely some potential in that premise.

Still, whether this one makes it through the whole season or not will really depend on how many times they want to play with the ‘doll’ and whether or not they actually want to focus on what could be the more interesting story. Even just exploring a growing a relationship between the figure and the human character could be quite interesting so let’s hope that they do something with this premise other than milk it for cheap laughs.

Visually, this one is a little rough around the edges but all and all there’s no problems. It works well enough and you don’t expect much from a short anime anyway. The sound is also just kind of fine without doing much.

I don’t have much in the way of expectations with this one but it is worth a second episode at least.

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HYPERDIMENSION NEPTUNIA THE ANIMATION 1/7 SCALE PRE-PAINTED FIGURE: NEPTUNE NESOBERI VER.

Episode 2

Well, this is definitely going to be my trash show of the season. That said, for an anime about a guy who has a figure come to life they’ve been remarkably tame on the pervy content even when said figure take a bath. I’m not actually complaining given I probably wouldn’t stick around for that type of content but the problem is that Amazing Stranger seems to be a set up for that kind of content and doesn’t really have a whole lot else going on. So without it, there’s just not much happening here.

Even for a twelve minute episode, this felt pretty empty.

We get a very short sequence at the start of the figure and the main character going various places and taking photos before they return to his apartment. Then, it turns out there was another character in the packet that has also come to life who calls the nerd out on his lies. Meanwhile, Nona, the figure, overhears them and realises she’s actually an anime character.

The short existential crisis could have been interesting but instead it mostly gets swept under the rug and we move into a fairly unamusing sequence of Nona lying about and watching TV.

This one feels like it isn’t going to do very much at all with its premise and even less with its characters. I’m sticking with it for now but my low expectations are now down to pretty much no expectations of this being anything other than filler.

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Karandi James
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