Arifureta Season 2 Episode 5 – Caution Is Not In Their Dictionary

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 5 Review

Arifureta leaves Myu behind as the gang board the submarine and go labyrinth hunting. Only it isn’t much of a hunt because after drifting kind of aimlessly, giving time to show each girl of the harem in the shower and Hajime contemplating the setting sun, the moon hits the magical necklace and gives them a direct beam of light to their location. Convenient.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 5

Arifureta takes us on an underwater adventure – kind of.

It is kind of weird they made such a big deal about this being an underwater labyrinth and Hajime premade a submarine and the like. Largely because as soon as they arrive underwater the submarine becomes useless as they end up in first a cave and then some kind of island location. Also, can we take a moment to critique the underwater sequence Arifureta does give us.


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I mentioned back in season one that one of the issues with the action in the dungeons was how dark the episodes were. To the point that it was difficult to even see what was happening because there was insufficient contrast. Well, underwater sequences are much the same and the submarine really just gets them down through the water, throws a few torpedo’s at a completely unidentified monster, and then is packed away.

Arifureta, this is not how you make best use of your props.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 5

Though while we are on the submarine sequence, I found Hajime’s actions just kind of eye-roll worthy. He senses or sees a monster behind the submarine (or at least its aura) and without even identifying what it is simply launches a barrage at it, gloats about how the explosions are more powerful and continues on. Great, now even the anime itself is just skipping over conflict to the point where we don’t even know what they are fighting.

Likewise Tio notices something on the cave roof when they arrive and rather than take a closer look or anything else she just hits it with a barrage of magic power. Guessing they weren’t trying to get the element of surprise here. Not to mention, her attack essentially dropped part of the roof on top of Shea.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 5

Arifureta then treats the audience to a slime fight though again its taking place in an underwater cavern so basically just accept you are going to see dark purple smears on the screen and the girls lifting their arms up while lights come out and meanwhile Hajime will go from shooting a gun to getting out the flame thrower. Its a pretty unspectacular visual mess of a sequence.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 5

But before you think I’m just kind of dumping on Arifureta because I can, I actually did like the sequence that followed all the murky action where Hajime point blank talked to Kaori about his relationship with Yue and called her out on her jealousy. It was a far more direct approach to tidying up miscommunications and misunderstandings than most anime ever get to and hopefully it tidies up the ongoing squabbling in the harem because that was getting old.

It would be even better if Kaori could just be happy for Hajime and leave it at that.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 5

Finally, as has become standard for Arifureta Season 2, the story jumps over to the castle where we see Aiko getting abducted. Someone ought to tell her kidnapper that being told ‘don’t worry I won’t kill you’ isn’t as comforting as she might think.

All things considered, I’d still say season 2 of Arifureta is going much better than most of season one, however there are still enough issues, particularly with the visuals and lack of things to care about as most of the battles still feel weightless. That said, season 2 is far more watchable than season one and honestly its doing better at holding my interest this season than the second season of Realist Hero or the first season of Tensai Ouji.

Images from: Arifureta 2nd Season. Dir. A Iwanaga. asread & studio MOTHER. 2022.


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Karandi James


Sabikui Bisco Episode 5 – Hard To Know If The Rust Is Destroying The World Or Whether People Are

Sabikui Bisco Episode 5 Review
https://www.crowsworldofanime.com/

Sabikui Bisco split its focus this week with Akiboshi and Milo allowing themselves to be taken prisoner by a town full of children while Pawoo discovers a place where it really is raining men before she accepts the ‘hospitality’ of strangers. As usual for Sabikui Bisco we have giant spiders, flying blowfish, a weird skin disease called shell-skin, as well as desolate rusted landscapes. It continues to be an intriguing adventure.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 5 Review

At some point in anime they will have to explain to me why characters like Akiboshi can happily jump off a tower onto the back of a crab and be perfectly unscathed, meanwhile the character in the background of the picture above is about to splat somewhat awfully upon the ground. Does gravity work differently for protagonists? Even Pawoo, while she doesn’t jump down long distances this week, does somehow get to the top of a building in an instant and practically flies sideways into the head of a giant spider this week.

Sabikui Bisco reminding us that gravity is subjective.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 5

Focusing on Pawoo first, this week she is riding her motorbike down a road when she busts a tire on a caltrop. This is when she discovers the building that is raining men and goes to the rescue of a sweet old couple. Sabikui Bisco seems determined to undermine our trust in other humans as last episode Milo tried to help a girl and she ended up trying to steal their crab. This week Pawoo saves the old couple and then they feed her poisoned tea and try to… well, it isn’t really clear exactly what their game is but it isn’t good.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 5

Interestingly, the old couple tell Pawoo a story of a mushroom keeper who came to town and offered medicine to people and how it led to many deaths and the rest of the people abandoning the town. I’m wondering if they were playing with poisoned tea even then and just blamed the mushroom keeper or if the mushroom keeper really was up to no good. It is hard to tell given it was already established in Sabikui Bisco that a lot of the stories about mushroom keepers are clearly just exaggerated or propaganda by those in power.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 5

Of course, this story also reinforced Pawoo’s already strong distrust of Akiboshi who has left town with her brother. I somehow don’t think she’s ready to be friends with him if she actually catches up.

However, the old couple also weren’t actually much of a match for Pawoo and ultimately she’s ready to head off again.

For Akiboshi and Milo, they are separated and end up helping the kids who took them captive in different ways. Milo naturally falls into doctor mode when he notices the skin disease on the girl feeding him. He’s also pretty horrified that they were lied to about their disease and that all the adults were taken away to work leaving the kids alone in the first place.

Akiboshi is treated more as a prisoner though isn’t really all that well confined as he happily leaves when he’s ready to. But in the meantime he converses with the kids and even manages to get a map of the subway stations.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 5

Thoroughly proving that unlike everyone else in the story Akiboshi is actually a good guy despite his rough nature, Sabikui Bisco then has the blowfish swarm, not expected for months, attack the kids just while they happen to be there and Akiboshi comes to the rescue. Plot convenience aside, it does make for a nice action sequence to end the episode.

It really is hard to know whether the world is falling apart because of the rust or because of the choices of people. While the rusting disease seems awful, it does seem that far more people are dying or living awful lives because of the actions of others. Meanwhile, Sabikui Bisco did establish a time limit for Akiboshi and Milo to find the rust eater to save Akiboshi’s friend and Milo’s sister and yet they don’t seem to be in much of a rush.

Anyway, the series continues to be fun. There’s a good mix of post-apocalyptic doom mixed in with fun action and just weirdness and Akiboshi and Milo are fun characters to spend time with. Looking forward to the next episode.

Images from: Sabikui Bisco. Dir. A Ikariya. OZ. 2022


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Karandi James


The Strongest Sage With The Weakest Crest Episode 5 – Removal of a Fool and Dragon Slaying

The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest Episode 5 Review

One of my issues with The Strongest Sage With The Weakest Crest so far has been that its advanced through huge chunks of potential story and character development without actually developing any of it. It has been moving forward through events so fast it is hard to care about any of them. So why then do we have an episode that seems like a re-run of resolved issues and then filler as the characters end up ‘training’ together?

The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest Episode 5

The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest seems to have settled on being just kind of ‘meh’.

Though, credit where it is due, the principal of first academy was your standard idiotic villain getting in the way for the sake of it and they at least dealt with this issue this episode rather than letting it drag on. He refused to help second academy even though it was ordered by the king and by not helping them he was leaving the city vulnerable to demon attack. There was no logic behind it and given his cackling laugh we weren’t really supposed to believe he had a valid point (or even consider him an actual character given how absurd he was).

The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest Episode 5

He could have hung around in The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest like a bad smell for most of the rest of the season just continuing to one-up his own idiocy yet they cut it off here. Why they let it happen this episode I’m still a little on the fence about but at least it is now resolved. After he refuses to accept the results of the tournament (because that matters when you learn you have demons hiding in your own school), he demands a rematch (again, because that matters when demons are coming to destroy your city).



Preparations for the impending demon invasion more or less go on hold for two days and then first academy students face off against second academy. Only the first academy brought half their student body by the looks and they are still using incantations and not wordless casting as was ordered by the king. In true The Strongest Sage fashion, the five students from second academy wipe them out in short order.

The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest

That still isn’t actually enough for the Principal of first academy to accept the loss or understand that everything he’s been doing is just wasting time. Even when asked why he hadn’t switched to teaching wordless casting, as ordered by the king, he defends his actions and declares they must protect their method (even though it has been proven ineffectual and was probably strongly influenced by infiltrating demons).

Enter the King who correctly points out he ordered the switch and fortunately the idiot is dragged away to interfere no more. We don’t actually see any of the students from the first academy after this but are told by the main characters that they have now just gotten on with the job. Those two days lost surely won’t make any difference.

The strongest sage with the weakest crest episode 5

Which is kind of why it is hard to buy into anything happening in The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest. Despite the potential demonic invasion no one in this story seems to be all that concerned or taking the threat all that seriously. Matty I could understand but the other characters are just so chill about something that previously would have spelled death for literally everyone in the city. And might still do so.

Equally I have to wonder about Iris’ feelings about fighting another dragon to steal its magistone for the barrier. I mean, sure she likes Matty and has joined up with Alma and Lurie to fight with him after flying them about in the previous episodes, but she is a dragon. Is there no concern with slaughtering one of her own kind for resources? Clearly not.

The Strongest Sage With The Weakest Crest Episode 5

That the final act of this episode of The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest then just has the main four training and trying out weapons speaks volumes for what this story values. It isn’t looking deeper at any of the aforementioned plot points. It is just going to roll through events at the same speed and somehow hope the cute cast land and maybe some of the comedic moments amuse.

And weirdly the end result is watchable but The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest is very much an anime that will pretty much be instantly forgotten after its airing season because there’s just nothing particularly good or bad about it and nothing that is going to stick.

Images from: The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest. Dir. N Akitaya. J.C.Staff. 2022


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Arifureta Season 2 Episode 4 – Floating Down The Lava Because Somehow That’s a Thing

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 4 Review

Arifureta briefly gave us a glimpse of a somewhat grittier scene last week in episode 3 with a fight that felt like the characters had to really invest. However almost immediately this episode backs away from that by showing us the characters already free and clear before flashing back to walk us through a pretty clumsy escape plot that involves Hajime having already built a submarine (because they were going to investigate an underwater labyrinth) and said submarine somehow being fit to ride through lava.

Let’s not even talk about the fact that not only did getting swept away by lava deeper underground end up with them not being trapped in an underground chamber but somehow harmlessly flushed them out into the ocean, it actually did so right near Myu’s home and despite having no clear means to communicate, Tio, Kaoru and Myu more or less instantly found them and reunited.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 4

Arifureta clearly likes its no stakes approach to conflict.

I will acknowledge that they do spend some time later in the episode bringing the whole conspiracy with the church and the King and his advisor’s potentially being mind-controlled or whatever more clearly into focus. As much as Aiko and Shizuku seem very peripheral to the plot, season 2 of Arifureta does seem to want to build up this portion of the story and there’s certainly room for it to end up being an interesting plot line. They just need to make us care about any of the classmates as characters.



Meanwhile, with the core group that we’ve spent time with and kind of come to appreciate, Yue, Hajime and Shia fall back into their old dynamics from before Tio and others joined the crew. As much as Tio had a pretty glorious moment in the last episode, this episode of Arifureta just reminded me of how much better this cast is when there are less of them around. Because as the others caught up with Hajime again I felt each character’s presence get more diluted until we really just had Myu and Hajime with the bevy of other characters trailing along and filling up the background.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 4

Even Yue couldn’t really break through this week. While she certainly had her moment, with Shia more or less out for the count after their escape and Hajime lying on the deck of his convenient submarine, Yue certainly takes advantage of the moment to reclaim her position as the main girl in the story but all too soon she’s also just part of the bright haired girl group that seem to follow Hajime.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 4

As always, its a case of wanting more from Arifureta than it seems willing to bring to the party and the end result is always feeling like we’re getting a walk through of a story rather than being immersed in the story.

Myu being reunited with her mother should have felt somewhat emotional but instead it was just another thing that happened and even the conversation between mother and Hajime, who Myu has taken to calling ‘papa’ couldn’t really carry any weight because the whole thing was frame by the locals peeking in through the windows and providing unwanted commentary before running off to plot something (probably something relatively meaningless so I’m not overly concerned).

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 4

That said, having watched season one and now being a third of the way through season two, it is clear season two is a little more settled than season one felt. There’s nothing actively bad about this season so far and it is definitely more a case of just feeling a little underwhelming. Though if this season of Arifureta gave us more episodes like episode 3 that might start to change.

Images from: Arifureta 2nd Season. Dir. A Iwanaga. asread & studio MOTHER. 2022.


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Karandi James


Sabikui Bisco Episode 4 – A Crab Rider Is Born

Sabikui Bisco Episode 4 Review
https://www.crowsworldofanime.com/

Sabikui Bisco doesn’t really advance the plot much in its fourth episode. Instead we watch Milo and Bisco attempt to progress from point A to B and along the way we get more of a feel for the dynamic between the duo as well as some comedy in the form of Milo attempting to learn how to ride the giant crab.

As much as Bisco seems like he has an interesting history, his portrayal in this episode is far more standard shouty reactionary character who gives poor instructions and is quick to laughter or anger. Playing opposite him is Milo, the more logical minded doctor who wouldn’t mind getting an instruction manual if it helped him get on the crab so they could get on their way but Bisco’s more visceral instructions aren’t exactly what he has in mind.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 4

Sabikui Bisco kind of settled into an odd couple pattern for the episode.

They’ve kind of got the contrast between our red-headed hot-head of a mushroom keeper and the more timid and yet very determined doctor. More importantly, they aren’t just making Milo the wimp and dead weight. He surprises Bisco more than once in this episode and probably surprised everyone when he treated the pink-haired girl they came across along the way.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 4

Speaking of which, Sabikui Bisco has Bisco and Milo cross paths with the pink haired girl who was working for the governor of the city in the previous episodes. Turns out she was fed a worm larvae and without certain drugs it has now hatched. As much as her character is not particularly interesting or impressive in any way, watching her die like that would have been pretty awful and Milo’s quick actions most definitely saved her life, even if she doesn’t appear overly greatful.

More than that, we see earlier in the episode that when it comes to treatment, Milo loses all of his uncertainty and timidity that he seems to have in other situations. Even the crab becomes more manageable for him when he positions it in a patient/doctor relationship and he takes charge of the situation. And watching a giant crab being told to sit was pretty amusing.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 4

What I do find odd is even after Sabikui Bisco spent a whole episode largely focused on the two characters interacting, I still don’t feel like we’re really got much sense of who Bisco is under that gruff exterior. Both Bisco and Milo are aligned in their goal to save people they care about from rusting and yet otherwise there’s little that is clear about Bisco and his overall sense of the world.

For instance, I didn’t expect that when we caught up with the post credit scene from last week and the temple turned out to be a giant animal, that Bisco would immediately advocate for taking it down. I kind of expected him to be more for conserving life and finding a way to divert it or settle it down. Though I guess getting your skull punctured by a crab claw and then giant mushrooms bursting out of your head would settle you a bit.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 4

What was pretty clear by the end of this episode of Sabikui Bisco is that this anime is fun to watch. Whether the plot is progressing or not its just fun. Milo and Bisco work well together, I like the interesting landscapes and oddities the characters come across, and there’s just a sense that this story is taking itself just seriously enough but not too seriously. Hopefully it can continue to find this nice balance of fun and more serious end of the world content as the story continues.

Images from: Sabikui Bisco. Dir. A Ikariya. OZ. 2022


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The Strongest Sage With The Weakest Crest Episode 4 – Demons, Dragons and Explosions

The Strongest Sage Episode 4 Review

The Strongest Sage With The Weakest Crest continues its trend of moving us through events but not really inspiring any kind of emotional connections to them. Where another story may have chosen to focus on Lurie and Alma’s accomplishments as they work together to bring down a demon this week, here it is just another footnote in an episode where they defeat a demon, Matty defeats a demon, announces that a magic crystal thing is summoning a horde of monsters to attack the city, return to the city and then have Iris transform into a cute anime girl before taking the entrance exam to join them at school.

The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest Episode 4

Yeah, hard to emotionally invest in anything when it still feels like we’re approaching this story as a speed run.

The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest does like to blow things up though.

Also, we’re still suffering from the same problem that has plagued previous episodes of Matty being more or less an unstoppable force and his attitude being utterly indifferent most of the time to his own actions. Actually, this week he went a little beyond casual to actually cruel as he didn’t just defeat the demons. He was most definitely toying with them and I think most viewers would agree that it was a nasty way to win a fight.

The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest Episode 4

This probably wouldn’t be such a problem for The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest if it had slowed down its pacing long enough to establish that the demons are in fact nefarious and evil and the end well and truly justify the means. But while Matty seems convinced all demons must die and we’ve been told they’ve interfered with human magic development, none of these demons have so far done anything actually demonic on screen in four episodes. And Matty’s knowledge is antiquated.



In honesty, if you take away the word demon, so far Matty has revealed the true face of someone hiding in a human kingdom (okay not great) and then he slaughtered them without determining their intention. When others came to find out what was going on, he slaughtered them. Then, he tracked back a spy (again, spying bad), coerced a dragon to give him a ride, and mercilessly killed two more again without any kind of discussion or opportunity to work things out.

Now I don’t actually doubt the evil of the demons in The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest. It doesn’t exactly strike me as a deep enough story to really have the demons as anything other than evil. And the limited cackling dialogue the demons we’ve seen have delivered so far doesn’t exactly inspire confidence that they’ll be nuanced villains.

The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest Episode 4

But I can’t really see Matty as overly heroic. He really is self-centred and driven in the pursuit of power and whatever suits his purpose. The greater good of the kingdom doesn’t appear to be his goal. Even his decision to delay telling the school about the incoming horde of monsters doesn’t exactly speak well of his character.

Anyway, rather than dwell on Matty’s motives or the fact that so far he’s perhaps the most unlikeable protagonist I’ve seen in awhile (though not as obnoxious as some), and let’s instead look at how The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest brings Iris into the fold.

The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest Episode 4

Yep, after transforming into a human her antics during the exam are clearly just there for laughs and it isn’t that funny. Why Matty didn’t do a practice run or prepare her is anyone’s guess. Why The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest felt it needed a character for more slapstick humour is also anyone’s guess. All and all, I’d have to agree with the Principal’s assessment that she’s just bizarre.

The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest Episode 4

All of this leaves The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest as a very middling viewing experience. There’s still room for growth and opportunities for the story to pull together but only if it actually slows down, gives these characters and the world building a chance, and maybe if Matty actually suffered some kind of set-back forcing him to be a little less cocky. I don’t like the chances.

Images from: The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest. Dir. N Akitaya. J.C.Staff. 2022


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Arifureta Season 2 Episode 3 – Finally A Challenge Appears

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 3 Review

One of my ongoing issues with the anime adaptation of Arifureta has been the general feeling that even the characters are bored or just playing around as they move through the various challenges they seemingly face. I get the whole point is that Hajime is an overpowered main character after his ordeal falling to the bottom of the Labyrinth alone but it doesn’t make for a compelling story when a ridiculously powerful enemy appears and Hajime literally snuffs it out without breaking a sweat.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 3

After the events of the last episode, Hajime isn’t in a great state. In fact, I don’t think we’ve seen him this injured since the very start of the story and Yue is understandably a little freaked out. Even Tio and Shia are struggling to keep calm under the circumstances. And then it appears that the demon has caught up with them and decided to eliminate them. Also he declares he’s god’s apostle and blah, blah, blah. Yeah, his motives seem fairly trite to be honest and just the usual kind of thing of I got great power from someone and now I’ll do whatever just because they say so.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 3

Arifureta could put a little more effort into the antagonist here.

However, just finally having a fairly powerful enemy isn’t enough to elevate Arifureta from the pile of indifference I usually have when watching it. What works here is that the fight itself, while following most of the standard clichés for such a match up when it isn’t a final battle, works well. The pacing was spot on. The characters actually seemed to be taking the situation very seriously. There were actual potential stakes. And let’s be honest, the setting of fighting inside a volcano is just kind of cool once you get a decent enough fight scene to enjoy it.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 3

Weirdly though, Tio, a character I have little time for and am mostly glad she has mostly remained in the background of the group, was the standout this week, and not just because she went full dragon.



Arifureta really gave her moments to shine throughout this episode as she was the one who kept her head when Hajime was first injured. Shielding Yue from the follow up attack and also preventing Shia from putting herself in harm’s way. She also recalled that Hajime, despite his overwhelming strength, was human. A very brief flash-back sequence reminded us of her own circumstances and why she hides what she is most of the time. And then she stepped up, went full dragon and played a pivotal roll in allowing Hajime to kind of get the upper-hand in the fight if only briefly.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 3

It was a solid effort from this supporting cast member and I think her final flight out of the volcano on Hajime’s orders, as true to form she laughs in the face of pain, is a scene that should be remembered as a triumph for a character that at times manages to really just derail whole scenes. This was Tio at her best and I really hope we see more of this Tio because I really liked it.

The other solid choice here is the villain isn’t killed. Arifureta most definitely is heading for a rematch which means for once we have something to look forward to in this story rather than just Hajime knocking something down and moving on seemingly without ever considering what is coming in the future.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 3

The final few minutes of the episode of Arifureta skip us back to the castle with the Princess, the King and all the other class-mates. There’s a problem with the King being in a trance, Shizuku is feeling weak after her easy defeat in the dungeon, and the guy who tried to kill Hajime is annoyed because Hajime isn’t dead and Kaori has now gone with him. Going to be honest, I don’t care. None of these characters have had enough presence in the anime to be anything other than a distraction and sure these subplots will be important later but Arifureta hasn’t given them enough weight to really matter at this stage.

Here’s hoping more of the episodes feel like this where core characters get moments worth celebrating and conflicts feel like they were worth having.

Images from: Arifureta 2nd Season. Dir. A Iwanaga. asread & studio MOTHER. 2022.


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Sabikui Bisco Episode 3 – A New Partnership Is Born

Sabikui Bisco Episode 3 Review
https://www.crowsworldofanime.com/

When the end credits of episode3 for Sabikui Bisco started I was kind of convinced this story had settled into some more predictable territory. Sure we still had a giant crab that can apparently burrow through sand at extreme speeds and mushrooms sprouting to gigantic proportions on impact but these gimmicks had already been revealed in the previous episodes and so were now just being utilised by the story as needed.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 3

Yet, despite most of episode 3 being more or less what should be expected given the set up, the after credits sequence felt the need to throw in one more moment of bizarre (and how weird is it that explosive mushroom growth has become normal in three episodes) when an entire hillside literally pulls itself up from the sand and starts to walk away. I’m guessing the writers of Sabikui Bisco didn’t want the audience to ever think they’d seen the weirdest thing yet.

Episode 3 of Sabikui Bisco puts us into more familiar territory as the time jumps stop and the narrative plays out in a far more ordinary manner despite the extraordinary setting.

This episode sees the continuation of the fight between Pawoo and Bisco. Pawoo, of course, is convinced that since the doctor’s office has been attacked the Milo has come into harm’s way. A point of view not really helped by Bisco’s ambiguous explanation of how the doctor was helping his friend. As much as Bisco wants to complain that people don’t listen to mushroom keepers, I kind of think there’s a communication issue going on from his end as well.

Then again, maybe he’s just so used to people not listening he gave up trying.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 3

While that fight plays out complete with thrown motorbikes exploding in mid-air and a giant bowling pin (because why not), Sabikui Bisco does show us Milo working on Jabi and getting some much needed exposition. Because if we relied on Bisco to tell us what his goal was I think we’d still be confused. Jabi is far more linear in his explanation of the use of mushrooms to eat the rust which is why mushroom keepers plant them in places where there is rust. That others have the mistaken impression the mushrooms are causing the rust seems like it would be easy to disprove but I guess people believe what they want to believe.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 3

Fortunately the fight between Bisco and Pawoo wraps up with Bisco gaining the upper hand and knocking her out. I suspect that she’s not going to let it go, particularly given Milo decides to go with Bisco, and that she’ll end up pursuing them, but I kind of hope she gets the truth sooner rather than later. As it is Sabikui Bisco leaves her unconscious as Milo departs the city with Bisco.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 3

One thing I am continuing to really enjoy about this series, other than just wondering where some of the ideas came from, is the soundtrack. It kind of reminds me of older adventure anime. Actually, the anime it reminds me most of in terms of the background music is Tsubasa Chronicles. It isn’t quite as dramatic and operatic but there’s definitely some similarities.

I was a little surprised that this episode of Sabikui Bisco did so little with Kurokawa’s character. He did appear very briefly, but despite seemingly being set up as a major player in earlier episodes, his goons barely even entered the scene this week and we gain nothing new about his character or why he was interested in Milo back in episode 1.

Sabikui Bisco Episode 3

I’m actually really excited for the next episode now that this opening sequence has played out. With Milo and Bisco pairing up and leaving the city we’ve got a good chance to expand on the world building and for these characters to really play off one another. Hopefully it ends up being an enjoyable ride.

Images from: Sabikui Bisco. Dir. A Ikariya. OZ. 2022


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The Strongest Sage With The Weakest Crest Episode 3 – Defeat More Demons, Go Pick Up A Dragon

The Strongest Sage With The Weakest Crest Episode 3 Review

I mentioned in my episode 2 review that one of the biggest narrative issues that The Strongest Sage With The Weakest Crest seemed to face was an absolute lack of tension. Episode three continues that trend with Mathias more or less indifferent during battle and always supremely confident of the outcome of any given action.

At this point I’m not entirely sure if this series will even given me enough to write about each week as everything is perfectly functional and yet somewhat unremarkable. The viewing experience ends up being one that is pleasant enough but almost instantly forgotten because nothing here was given any particular weight. Even the reveal of how human society initially got set-back through a series of explosions was just a kind of by-the-way comment to which Mathias more or less went ‘huh’ and then continued to go about his business.

The Strongest Sage With The Weakest Crest Episode 3

The Strongest Sage With The Weakest Crest has more or less nailed going through the motions.

So the third episode of The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest has Mathias and his girls trying to sell some of their loot from the dungeon. Naturally the receptionist makes a snarky comment about the ‘crest of failure’ and asks if Mathias is the porter to which he agrees and proceeds to dump a serpent carcass into the guild room.



You would have thought after all the kerfuffle at the match between schools at least some rumours would have spread and perhaps people wouldn’t be so quick to call something a failure crest. But then again if they did that Mathias would literally have zero set-backs because literally everything goes his way. The snarky comments are about the only kind of adversity he seems to be dealing with, other than the principal wanting him to teach more to others which seems kind of reasonable under the circumstances.

The Strongest Sage With the Weakest Crest Episode 3

On their way back to the school, Mathias suddenly notes two demonic presences heading their way and quickly deploys Alma and Lurie to distract the weaker one while he dispatches the other. There’s never any doubt here in The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest that Matty is going to do exactly that. Nor is there any thought that perhaps the girls won’t succeed at distracting a demon without getting hurt. There’s zero emotional investment as you watch them go through the motions eventually leading to two downed demons.

Perhaps I’d care a bit more if the reason humans and demons were fighting was clearer? Or maybe if there was even an inkling that somehow the plan was going to go wrong? Or even if the demon attacks were potentially hazardous to those in the town below at least ensuring those fighting them had to be cautious of that?

The Strongest Sage With the Weakest Crest Episode 3

But there’s really nothing and The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest doesn’t even give these demons basic personality other than indignant that a human is standing up to them and then panicky as they are swiftly defeated. It’s the usual ‘how dare you’ as Mathias literally runs circles around the stronger of the two, even though the demon should probably note he was the one who came to attack and not the other way around.

Of course, the next episode may very swiftly change that. Conveniently a demon was spying on the throne room when Mathias was getting rewarded yet again and from that Mathias has identified the precise location of the demons. Its a bit far so before heading off he has to organise a mode of transport, and the anime needs to introduce the dragon who will clearly become the cute red-haired girl in the OP.

The Strongest Sage With The Weakest Crest Episode 3

There’s nothing terrible about this episode of The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest however it just doesn’t really manage to be particularly interesting. Weirdly though I’m not inclined to drop this series because it is perfectly watchable, but at the same time it really isn’t something that is going to really stick.

Images from: The Strongest Sage with the Weakest Crest. Dir. N Akitaya. J.C.Staff. 2022


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Karandi James


Arifureta Season 2 Episode 2 – Playing With Lava Isn’t The Brightest Idea

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 2 Review

Arifureta is one of the very few anime where I had read the source prior to the anime coming out (there’s been a few more recently but usually I read the source after the anime is done and usually only if I want to know if there’s more to the story). With the other issues season one faced, knowing the story had been told better in a different format certainly didn’t help my enjoyment of it. But season 2 isn’t burdened by that issue as the plot has now moved beyond the novels that I’ve read.

Which explains why I was nearly jumping for joy midway through this episode when Kaori decided to stay in the village to continue healing the sick civilians rather than accompanying Hajime to the mountain. Anymore Yue and Kaori bickering after the first episode of season 2 of Arifureta might very well have killed any lingering curiosity I had for finding out where this story goes.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 2

Arifureta Season 2 Continues Its Theme Of Indifferent Monster Slaying

Anyway, this episode begins with Hajime and his harem arriving in the town that had the issue with the poisoned water. In the space of a few little spells they create a major water reservoir so the town people can drink while they determine what the problem with the oasis is before going in search of the magic mineral that will help cure everyone rather than just stabilise them. Yue does most of the leg-work with the spells and for a brief instant looks weakened but then makes out with Hajime and instantly bounces back.



One of the things that continues to make it difficult to really buy into Arifureta is the indifference the characters themselves have to their circumstances. Sometimes they at least recklessly enjoy the danger but normally, as it is when they confront the blob monster thing in the oasis, they are so coldly disinterested in really just makes it hard as a viewer to care about what they are doing.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 2

However, with the water reserves sorted and the creature in the oasis defeated, its time to go to the mountain and enter yet another labyrinth. I’m not sure if this one was meant to be as elaborate or interesting as the previous ones but after a brief walk, a rest stop in which all the girls open their shirts to cool off revealing sweat trickling into their bosoms, the group board a boat and ride the lava to the finish line.

Way to take the excitement out of a quest.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 2

Meanwhile how long is Hajime going to react with blushes and yelps when the girls that are constantly around him do something vaguely provocative? He’s so chill about death and monsters after his ordeal in the first labyrinth it makes you wonder why his constant exposure to Yue, Shia and Tio hasn’t desensitised him at least a little bit. Then again, I guess he wouldn’t be an anime protagonist if he didn’t.

Arifureta Season 2 Episode 2

The final parts of this episode of Arifureta focus on some lava snakes attacking the group prior to reaching what they think will be the end of the labyrinth. As usual they take care of it all pretty easily though as least just as they think they are victorious something a little surprising happens leaving us with at least a decent enough cliff-hanger to carry us into episode 3.

Part of me just wishes that the creative team behind Arifureta had spent as long on their monster designs an animations as they had on cute anime girls and heaving bosoms. While the lava snakes are a step up in quality from some of the visual monstrosities of season one, they aren’t particularly interesting and their movements are almost identical to the sand snakes encountered in episode 1.

Images from: Arifureta 2nd Season. Dir. A Iwanaga. asread & studio MOTHER. 2022.


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Karandi James