Scott and Karandi Discuss Attack on Titan Part 2

Welcome to part two of the collaboration between Scott and myself as we discuss Attack on Titan and its latest developments as well as ask those pressing questions that have been on our minds. I had a lot of fun with this particular collaboration and it was a long time coming because Scott and I have had a number of scheduling conflicts. Hopefully this isn’t the last time we work together because this was a really fun conversation. That said, let’s get into the second part and if you missed part one, be sure to hop on over to Scott’s blog and check it out.

Watch out, there are spoilers below if you are not up to episode 5 of Attack on Titan Season Three Part Two.


Mind blown.

So, I wanted to ask you what your thoughts were on the Beast Titan. Mostly because I’m utterly confused by that character.

That’s a good question. I guess he’s related to Eren somehow? Maybe? Not knowing about him is kind of frustrating. I’m even confused on whether or not he knows about baseball because he’s been using pitching throws to chuck a bunch of rocks.

Yeah, the baseball references were a bit… let’s just call them odd. They absolutely didn’t fit with the rest of the world given we’ve been given no indication baseball, or team sports of any kind, are a thing. But I’m even confused as to his motive. He showed up all big and bad and then just disappeared for huge chunks of time only to conveniently show up at times when it is really inconvenient for the scouts. I just feel like if his objective was simply to destroy the humans he probably could have accomplished it a fair while ago without all the games.

A Titan sports anime would be kind of entertaining though. But in general, I definitely agree. There is something more to his interactions then just eliminating humanity. I don’t mind be left in the dark when it comes to some things and all his actions are guided in some way, but I wish Attack on Titan at least gave him more than flashbacks that only last a minute or two that let us in on him. The only thing that comes to my mind is that Attack on Titan is leaving us in the dark for a reason. I hope it’s a good reason.

Me too. Attack on Titan has this tendency to drag things out a very long time before getting to a reveal though so I’m not expecting answers any time soon. But there is one question I need answered by the end of this season. And that is of course, what is in Eren’s basement?!

OMG, yes. The question that has been there ever since the second half of season one. Eren’s dad was hopefully up to something interesting and extravagant for making us wait so long. Probably not though. I have a feeling that it’s going to be a combination of a mad scientist lab and carry some important historical documents about this world. What do you think, Karandi?

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 8
Wouldn’t we all like to know why.

I think that would be nice. I keep having this horrible feeling that after dragging it out this long they’ll get there and find the house completely collapsed in on the basement or it all burnt up in the most recent explosion/fire in the town. That would be so cruel to the viewer and so typical of Attack on Titan.  The other option is that it is something completely game changing only I have no idea what that would be. Maybe a new syringe that gives Eren’s titan the ability to disintegrate other titans with a look? I’m mostly joking about that.

It’s still possible though. Definitely would be the longest and most aggravating shonen power up I’ve ever seen to achieve if that was the case. Whatever it is, I definitely feel like it would hopefully change everything that we know so far even more. Didn’t even think about it all being ruined until you brought that up for some reason or another, even though that is an obvious thing that could happen.

I know this is the wrong side of the wall but the damage on the other side was worse. These houses do not look like they are going to be standing much longer.

Maybe I just have too negative an outlook on life at this point. Then again, I have sat through three seasons of Attack on Titan and I can’t think of one time when everything actually went their way without some casualty.

Completely fair. Definitely not the kind of show you watch casually or when you need something uplifting. Still, I find it so captivating for some reason. Dang, it’s been such a long road.

Agreed. Season one grabbed me with its first episode and while I found a lot of the second half of season one and a lot of season two meandering, there’s something compelling about the story here and the world they are in. Then season three started building on all of that and now I’m completely hooked again with this second part. What’s really true is that none of the last couple of episodes could have happened without all of that previous stuff as even though it wasn’t as fantastic to watch there’s really nothing at this point that we could discard and have the impact we’ve been getting. This one is definitely one where we have to take a long view of it and episodic reviewing doesn’t really fit with the story and yet we’re all trying to do it anyway.

I’ve been generally more positive with Attack on Titan’s second season then some people, because it had enough good character moments to make it at least passable as a watch, but I agree. Throughout most of season three so far, it’s been mostly hit after hit with. While still having issues like the Beast Titan being there for some reason, everything else has very worth it. I really like how the ending of this part of season three has been focusing on the Scouts training because it really fits with everything that has happened this season and is a big reminder of what the humble beginnings were like.

Anything else you want to discuss before we wrap this up?

Not much comes to mind for me, how about you?

Super important question: who do you think would win a fight between Mikasa and Levi?

Somewhat biased opinion, but I am leaning towards Mikasa a little bit because she’s  younger and probably has more energy to spare when it comes to combat. A little bit of that younger and plucky vs experienced and veteran sort of thing.

You don’t think Levi’s experience would give him an edge?

Oh dang, you got me. Still, I know that combat is somewhat about the same with swinging from at each other and attacking with swords, but maybe Mikasa could come up with some attack that Levi wouldn’t expect. Of course, then again this me thinking on the fly here about this. Gah.

Attack on Titan Episode 7 - Mikasa

Not that it matters. Unless Levi kidnaps Eren in which case I’d put money on Mikasa winning the fight. Don’t stand between her and Eren under any circumstances.

Agreed, Not even Levi could withstand that rage.

Attack on Titan Season 3 Episode 3

But I think we’re done. I’m so glad we finally managed to organise this and I had a lot of fun even if we’re still both stuck waiting for the next few episodes to find out what actually happens. Want to bet all our guesses turn out wrong?

You know what, I would take that bet. This show can throw some curveballs at us (hopefully not from a beast titan), so I expect that is what is going to happen. I’m glad we finally got around to doing this.

Guess now we’ll wait and see what Attack on Titan throws at us next.


But hey, Attack on Titan has just been great to watch this season and if you want to join in speculating about what will happen throw Scott or myself a comment or a question. I’m just going to ask you keep them spoiler free for those of us who haven’t read the source.

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Karandi James
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Friendly Talks With Arthifis – Meiji Tokyo Renka Episodes 5 – 9

Meiji Tokyo Renka post title

We’re back and this time Arthifis and I are discussing the mid-season of Meiji Tokyo Renka and we have been having a great time with this one. If you hop on over to the Anime Shelter you will find our thoughts on The Rising of the Shield Hero. Anyway, I’ll be in red and Arthifis will be in blue. Hopefully you enjoy our chat and if you’ve been following the show let us know what you think of it in the comments below.

Meiji Tokyo Renka Episode 5

Welcome Arthifis, it is good to see you again. Glad we’re back discussing this anime. It has been a little bit surprising. Have you enjoyed it so far?

Hey there Karandi! Likewise! 🙂 Yeah, I’ve been really enjoying it, probably Meiji Tokyo Renka will be the most underrated Anime of the season if this continues like this. What about you?

I’ve really been enjoying it, though probably because I went in with fairly low expectations given the genre. That said, I think the most underrated anime this season is probably My Roommate is a Cat. That has been consistently adorable. However, this one is certainly being overlooked by the larger community with very few reviews of it to be found each week. Which is a shame, because it is just kind of fun.

Meiji Tokyo Renka Episode 8

Oh yeah! Completely forgot about My Roommate is a cat for a second. To be honest, the winter season this year is full of surprises! Hopefully, posts like these will bring awareness to how good Meiji Tokyo Renka is 😀

Well, last time we both seemed to be enjoying Mei as a character and I must say she’s continued to really grow on me over the mid-season. Though I have a few questions about her singing about electricity. How have you found her?

Are you kidding? XD The electricity is just the best… Im not sure how is that not a meme yet hahaha

Meiji Tokyo Renka Episode 6

Yeah, I can definitely see that being a meme or worse, an endless repeated loop on a YouTube video. I’m just going to close my eyes and pretend I didn’t see it.

hahaha yeah, the singing was not really that great, and the music was terrible. But, I think that was the idea. Bu well, I’m still enjoying Mei as a character and I think she is strong enough to lead Meiji Tokyo Renka.

She is interesting, funny and kind, so she has been a very good character to follow. However, I do have some small problem with her which is how oblivious can she get. I mean, I know she is a teenager from the future, but how does she not know what is a Geisha or a Geisha house? That just seems quite a reach to me… But, more than that, she is more than ok. How about you?

Meiji Tokyo Renka

I think I like her because she seems a bit more active in directing events than other similar protagonists who feel like they get dragged along. Sure she got sent to the past without really being involved but since then she’s made plenty of decisions and seems to have a clear idea of what she wants to do. I really like seeing the guys getting dragged in her wake sometimes and find her just a lot of fun.

You are right about her being just a little on the dense side though. She’ll know about some author or novel but then not know something blindingly obvious. It is a little hit and miss sometimes. Also she’s incredibly oblivious about how Ougai feels about her which seems insane given how open he’s been about declaring her his finace.

Meiji Tokyo Renka

Yeah, you are right about making her own decisions! In fact, one thing I wanted to comment is how she is always defying the guys around her and will do what she thinks best. She will turn down any guy (who is not Ougai) and even when it comes to Ougai, she will do what she things instead of just following his lead. It makes me remember Ouran High School main character a little bit.

Regarding she being oblivious towards Ougai, well she ends up to understand when he is completely faceforward with her in the geisha house. But, it is true that when it comes to any other guy, she is completely naive and does not get that everyone is getting in love with her. Though I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised how Mei started liking Ougai and will not budge from that feeling, which just makes it feel like more of a romance than a reverse harem.

Meiji Tokyo Renka Episode 8

I have to agree. It is nice to see her clearly make a choice with her feelings and so early in the series. You would think given he likes her and she’s infatuated with him they could just get together, but clearly we’re going to have to deal with his issues in the next couple of episodes before that can happen. Still, it kind of puts all the other guys on the shelf which is probably a good thing given I think I remember like two of their names without looking them up at this point.

Don’t get me wrong, they are all fun enough characters. I just can’t really remember them after their time on screen. I think Shunsou (probably spelt that totally wrong) is about the only one who has left much of an impression and that’s only because they use the excuse of looking for his cat to get into almost every other situation.

Meiji Tokyo Renka

I get you! Is not that the characters are not interesting or funny, it’s just that they only appear here and there, making it difficult to remember the name! >.< But, they all did make an impression on me, good or bad 😛

When it comes to Shunsou, well he is always there, he may even appear more times than Ougai at this point, so it makes sense that we remember is name hahaha

On that note, who is your least favourite character so far?

That’s a difficult question 😛 I’ll put Ougai aside just because, well it would be unfair to the others haha. (let me just search the name really quick) Well my favourite is a tie between Kyouka Izumi and Orojirou Kawakami (geisha version) XP What about you?

My favourite is probably Kyouka (if we put Ougai to the side). But I think my least favourite has to go to Fujita. He seemed like he would be a really interesting character, though a little bit intense. And then episode 8 happened and we got a tiny bit of his story and he was just kind of nothing. I kind of feel like his character didn’t go anywhere.

Yeah, Fujita is also my least favourite… Though the guy who is always speaking English can also be pretty annoying…

But well, what about the story? One of the things you commented in the last time was that you were afraid that the story would just throw Mei’s capabilities through the window at some point and just go for a generic reverse harem… What do you think now?

I am actually pretty impressed how they’ve managed to keep Mei’s abilities as part of the story and used it quite a number of times as the central focus (even more so than the guys). I also really like that they haven’t forgotten about the time travel aspect and I definitely want to ask your opinion about episode 9 in a moment, but one thing at a time.

The episode with the spirit in the lake was fantastic and I really loved how Mei ended up intervening in that story and saving the day, even if she then needed saving from drowning (Ougai comes in handy occasionally). But pretty much all the stories with the spirits or ghosts in them have been entertaining. I wonder if she’ll ever find the cat though.

Yeah, I also feel they did a good job. It’s true that we have an “arc” where she spends 3 days inside that geisha house being hit every second to learn etiquette, but those episodes were so funny that I don’t mind at all xD

When it comes to the episode of the lake, I’m with you! To be honest, when it comes to ghosts she moves and reacts a little bit like Natsume 🙂 Even against everyone’s advice she will always try to defend the spirit in some sort of way.

I also have to say that it was a pretty interesting ride. Since Kyouka also has the power to see ghosts, a character from his writing was able to come out of the story and become a spirit… It’s actually a pretty interesting idea, but I would hate to be in Kyouka’s shoes… I mean, everytime you want to write you need to make sure you don’t create something too violent xD

But, what did you want to ask from episode 9?

Charlie? What do you make of him? I mean he sends Mei back to the past and then tells her he can send her back at the next full moon. And now she says she doesn’t want to go and he’s like ‘no problem’. Do you think he’s up to something or do you think he genuinely just wants her to stay where she’s happy?

I also felt that scene a little off. In fact I just thought to myself, really? That easy huh?

Well, to be honest, I believe she will have to go back in the full moon. If you remember Charlie was not really happy when he heard the news. He seemed just concerned and wished that she had said something sooner, so I’m pretty sure she won’t be able to stay in the Meiji Era that easy.

Meiji Tokyo Renka Episode 9

I don’t think that Charlie is plotting anything though, Meiji Tokyo Renka just does not seem an Anime to go to that route. If it went, it would be a very unexpected turn to me xD What about you, what do you make of this Charlie?

Honestly, I think he’s up to something. I don’t think it was an accident he sent her back in the first place, as much as he ‘acted’ surprised. I think he genuinely wanted her to do something in the Meiji era and I’m not so sure if he wants her to stay. Then again, maybe I’m just starved of a decent anime villain at the moment and looking for villainous characters where none exist. I mean, other than Fujita, there’s no antagonist in this story at all and it is more just Mei dealing with various situations.

Not that lacking a villain is a bad thing. The story is really fun without it. But I just keep thinking Charlie must be up to something. So I was kind of hoping that maybe he’d reveal his true colours in the final few episodes. Though, we do have Ougai’s story to deal with so maybe there’s no time left for a surprise bad guy.

Is there anything else you want to discuss from these episodes?

Yeah, I think this last few episodes will be about Ougai and that female ghost… But, I get what you are saying! But, after watching The Rising of The Shield Hero, it’s more than ok to not have annoying characters who want makes me want to push the screen xD

But, anyways, I do believe you may be right. It seems not, but the electricity song you were talking earlier made the course of the past to change. Everyone only got on-board after her song, so maybe if she was not there we would have a future Japan lighless? We will never know! (Though I do have to say that was one of the most random Anime episodes I’ve seen in awhile)

So, yeah, my last question would be, what do you think about Mei having such impact in huge events of the past? I know that the show is not that deep, but she is changing the course of the Japanese history at this point!

I kind of felt it was reasonably expected given she seemed to recognise all the guys she was meeting (I assume they are reasonably famous in Japan and I haven’t looked them up yet but I’m sure when I do they’ll be very important). So I kind of figured her presence was there to either witness changes to history or be the cause of it.

Then again, I’m not expecting the anime to really get into the ramifications of that change. As you said, it just isn’t that deep.

Though, I agree, that was a really random episode. What was with the camel?

I laughed so hard in that part hahaha But then, one moment to another everything is completely fine because of Charlie’s magic lolol What the hell, it was really strange!

Well, considering this was kind of a random pick for covering this season, I’ve really had a lot of fun with it and I’m looking forward to seeing how it ends. Are we ready to head over to the shelter to tackle the other title on our review list?

That makes 2 of us! I’m also really interested in watching what is going to happen next, at this point I’m not sure if it’s gonna be a “and they lived happily ever after” kind of thing, so I’m intigued! 🙂

Yeah, let’s go eheh! Time to tackle The Rising of The Shield Hero!

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DANCE IN THE LIGHT (MEIJI TOKYO RENKA – YUMIHARI NO SERENADE THEME SONG)
DANCE IN THE LIGHT (MEIJI TOKYO RENKA - YUMIHARI NO SERENADE THEME SONG)

Is There A Best Time To Post An Anime Review?

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As someone who writes fourteen episode reviews a week most weeks and also throws in whole series reviews and book reviews, the question of how and when to schedule is one I come to over and over again.

When I first started blogging I would literally just watch an episode write something, do a bit of an edit and post. But then a whole bunch of shows would come out on the same day and I ended up starting to schedule posts for following days or else I’d have some days with heaps of posts and then nothing for the next. Eventually that evolved into the process I have now where at the start of each season I work out a rough schedule of each day so I know which posts are going to go out and when. My schedule notebook has every post I’ve scheduled and then published written in it since the 7th of July 2016 and it has served me well with only a few hiccups in the schedule when I’ve miscalculated a time zone or the like.

The Morose Mononokean Episode 4 Kinoko
Careful scheduling ensures time saved – so more time to play (or work, but let’s not talk about that).

But that doesn’t stop me wondering if there is a best time to post an anime review. Whether we are talking episode review or a full season review you are left with a fairly big decision. Do you get your post out as soon as it is finished airing to be the start of the conversation? Do you wait a little bit to work through your thoughts and to give yourself and other viewers some time before posting? Or do you distance yourself entirely and let all the fuss die down so that your post isn’t coming out at the same time as about a dozen others on the same anime?

I don’t actually know which approach is best. I know I take the second one. With everything except Sword Art Online Alicization this season I’ve given myself at least a day if not more between when it airs and when I’ve scheduled my post of the episode review. For full series I schedule one a week so it takes me nearly two and a bit months to get through the previous season’s shows and then I review some older anime until the most recent season ends and I start the cycle over again. Is this the best option? Again, I don’t really know.

Sword Art online Alicization Episode 4
I remember how fun this seemed back then – it was only three months ago.

It works for me because I don’t like feeling rushed. The only reason I review SAO on the same day as I watch it is because I was excited for its return and didn’t want to wait longer to discuss it when it first started airing. A lot of the excitement has kind of fizzled for me since, but given it comes out Sunday morning I usually have plenty of time to watch it, write a draft post and come back to it later in the evening and edit before publishing. So I’m not really inclined to move it at this point. For my other posts I can watch the shows the day they come out, if I have the time, but if I don’t, I’m not worried. I’ve got space in the schedule. And my posts go out on time fairly reliably.

As a reader, I know that there are posts I actively avoid. Given time zone differences, a lot of anime comes out late at night or early morning so it isn’t until I wake up that I can possibly watch it, but I usually do a read through posts and comments first. Anything reviewing an episode I’m about to watch of a show I’m really invested in (such as The Promised Neverland), I don’t open. I’m not paranoid about spoilers but I’d rather not read someone’s full take on the show before I watch it. If I remember I try to go back after to find those posts I skipped in the reader but sometimes I just don’t get back to them.

The Promised Neverland Episode 1 Conny
Avoid looking at it – you don’t want to know.

Being first out for a review is good in that people who are wondering about it or waiting for news will appreciate the timeliness of the post. However, a lot of viewers don’t want to read a post until after they’ve seen it themselves so sometimes being first means your post gets lost.

In terms of posting later, timeliness is something that needs to be considered. Episode reviews lose relevance quickly unless you are talking about something super popular that people will pick up outside of seasonal viewing. That said, you’ve got people who subscribe and watch things the week of release, people who get access the week after release, people who wait for the dubbed version which is sometimes a couple of weeks behind, and people who wait until the whole show is finished before starting it. So you’ve got a few windows to hit in terms of relevance for an episode review.

Tokyo 3Meiji Renka Episode
If readers want what you are writing you hopefully won’t have to force feed them.

As I said before, I don’t actually know the answer to the question of whether there is a best time to post an anime review. All I know is that each blogger is going to find what works for them in terms of being able to watch, write, edit, and post, and readers are going to find what works for them in terms of content they want to read.

However, for other reviewers, I’d love to know how you decide when to post your reviews and what you consider when making those decisions. So please, share your thoughts in the comments below.

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Karandi James
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Friendly Talks with Arthifis: Dakaichi Late Season Thoughts

Dakaichi Episode 7 On Set

Hey everyone and welcome to Arthifis’ and my late season thoughts on Dakaichi. I can’t believe we’re already three quarters through the season and soon we’ll be doing our final thoughts on the season. That’s kind of exciting and I will admit I have absolutely loved this collaboration with Arthifis this season (and if you haven’t checked it out already, be sure to check out Arthifis’ Ultimate Guide to the season).

Admittedly, both of us suffered from time zone issues this time around with Arthifis needing some coffee to help him wake up and me needing some pepsi to keep me awake as our marathon effort at discussing both Goblin Slayer and Dakaichi stretched on. The problem was, we both had so much to say about both shows and I think we probably could have kept going except that I needed some sleep and I’m sure Arthifis needed to do something else with his Saturday besides chat with me.

Anyway, if you haven’t already been and read it, please check out Arthifis’ site where our thoughts on Goblin Slayer will be posted and with that let’s get into Dakaichi. Today we’re covering up to episode 8.


Dakaichi Episode 5 Takato and Junta

Welcome Arthifis. I’m really glad we’re back again and discussing Dakaichi. I’m going to be honest, the last few episodes have made it clear that my memory of this one is patchy at best because other than Junta’s episode, a lot of the events in the last few episodes have come as a surprise to me and I realised that yeah, I don’t remember much of anything else from the source. So, we’re almost on a level playing field when it comes to this one at the moment.

On that note, how have the last few episodes been for you?

ahah I know the feeling of not remembering anything at all from something I read/watched.

Well… There is way too much happening on these episodes and a lot of things that I want to touch and ask your opinion xD So,maybe I’m gonna start with the conclusion of (browsing the name of the guy)…Is it Kiyotaka? I’m having a blank lol No, it’s not! It’s Ayagi.

Ok, let me just rephrase that, then… So, maybe I’m gonna start with the conclusion of Ayagi’s situation, what do you think?

Dakaichi Episode 6 Ayagi and Junta

I actually kind of liked how that concluded in the end mostly because Ayagi’s existence makes Junta look less creepy by default and also because the attention very much turned to Takato and the fact that he actually does kind of like Junta. It’s been hard to tell whether Takato is into the relationship or not previously, but after his encounter with Ayagi it really does make it clear that Junta isn’t forcing anything (or at least not too much) and Takato has made a clear choice.

That said, Ayagi is a really horrible person,but a necessary character. Or at least that’s how I saw it. (Is Kiyotaka the younger guy?) How did you find the conclusion to the Ayagi/Takato situation?

Nope, the younger character is Narumiya… I actually can’t find who Kiyotaka is LOL There is no pictures in MAL besides Junta and Takato and on Anime-Planet he doesn’t even appear on the character list LOLOL So, let’s just let him be for now ahah

Well, I understand what you are saying, but I don’t agree, to be honest. I found most part unnecessary. In fact, if we look up close, Ayagi was ready to force himself and rape Takato if Junta had not phoned. For me, it’s just not ok. Yes, Ayagi sleeps with everyone who he feels that he has to so he can climb in the ladder, that’s not ethic, but completely fine by me. However, from there, to actually rape someone who is passed out because how drunk they are it’s just… Not ok in my book. I mean, I don’t mind seeing media where that situation is used in a way of bringing awareness where the victim passes through hell and etc. I think the bad stuff also has to appear on the big (and small) screen. However, in this case, the situation is brushed off very easily.

I do think you are right when it comes to Junta though. When I was watching the episode I felt that Junta was stalking a little too much (the scene where Junta seems to be following Takato and knows where he is and what he is doing). However, after watching I put myself in his shoes and… If my boyfriend was close to being rape like Takato I would probably be even madder than Junta and would actually destroy the guy’s pretty face right away. Moreover, if I was in some kind of a world where that situation couldn’t be discussed or brought to the authorities and my boyfriend had to forcefully work that guy nevertheless, I would go and keep a close eye to what was happening.

However, at the end, I didn’t like how things were brushed off. Right away we can see that Ayagi is not such a bad guy after all. Meaning, he would not go to bed with someone if they are in a relationship. Besides, he actually goes in a quest in trying to make amends for what he has done to other girls. A little bit because of Junta’s blackmail, but also because of liking Takato and wanting to conquer his love. So, it just doesn’t make much sense…

What about Junta’s episode? Did you like it?

Dakaichi Episode 6 Takato

Before that, I think the depiction of rape and consent is a huge issue in any kind of Yaoi/BL story. The way it is portrayed,the consequences of it, the impact it has on people’s lives, it is very seldom explored in any meaningful way and is regularly used as a gateway into a same sex relationship which is just appalling. However, what that does mean, is that going into this story, I kind of expected it to be a lot worse. I was fully prepared for Junta to force Takato in episode 1 and for them to then try and build a relationship out of it (much like they did in Junjou Romantica – and that is still kind of creepy that they end up in the relationship they do).

So, by the time we get to this scene with Ayagi almost but not raping Takato, it isn’t so much that I think they did a good job of how they present the issue, because to be perfectly frank, they didn’t. Mostly because of all the reasons you’ve already identified. But, in my head I’m rationalising with the ‘it could have been worse’ argument. Which isn’t a great justification and for people who identify with this kind of event, won’t help that once again the issue of rape is being trivialised by this particular kind of story. Still, it is why it didn’t bother me so much while watching. I was genuinely expecting this series to be worse than it is in terms of how that issue was presented.

Does that make sense?

Dakaichi Episode 6 Junta and Takato

Yes, it does. And I remember when we first did this, you talked about that scene. The truth is, since they didn’t go that route in episode 1, I was expecting that they would not do it this time around.I was trying to find a scene where Takato could be at fault by leading Ayagi. However, that would not make sense to his character. So.. I think they could goat the route of Ayagi just trying to kiss him or something like that. It would piss off Junta nevertheless and it would be easier to digest.

However, I have to say that this scene, yet again, showed how Takato’s character is a little all over the place. I mean,one day he is this strong male character who doesn’t let anyone to play games with him, in the next he just seems someone who needs a strong man to defend him from everything… Oh, well… I understand, it’s the uke and seme formula that everyone wants to watch.

However, I do have to say, that they could just make Takato behave in a different way while near Junta (it would make a lot of sense) and still give the uke and seme formula without making me feel that Takato’s character is always changing with really no reason at all.

Sorry, just started another topic before even talking about Junta’s episode 😛 It’s just, this Anime is kind of a hate-love for me… I just love the relationship and both characters, but then I hate the flaws that the Anime has in my opinion xD

So do you want to finish discussing Takato and then tackle Junta’s episode? Because I could talk all day about Takato.

Ahaha! Yeah sure! 😀 I mean, I think I gave my opinion for these episodes, so go ahead eheh

Alright, I’m with you in that Takato’s character changes a lot but for me I find every change fairly relevant to what is happening at the time. When he’s in front of others or at work he has his professional face and personality. When he’s initially dealing with people he’s fairly stand-offish and tactical. Junta’s just forced his way through Takato’s barriers so he almost has no reason to put up a front anymore because Junta’s already seen him at his worst so he can just kind of let himself go.

However, after the incident with Ayagi, we see an actual vulnerable Takato. I loved the sequence after he woke up and he ended up wrapping himself in the curtain. As much as the anime isn’t dealing with the issues anywhere near as seriously as it needs to, it did give us a really good moment right there with Takato feeling lost, bewildered, doubting himself and then that moment of panic about how Junta was going to take it. Also, after being attacked, or allowing himself to be taken to bed by someone, it kind of made sense that Takato continued to feel a little out of sorts and vulnerable during the remainder of the episode before he got his feet back under him again.

I really enjoy these small changes in his character. Admittedly, they aren’t as nuanced as they should be to really pull it off and so he does come across as someone who kind of changes too much, but thinking about each scene I can kind of see where he’s coming from. That and because it was established that so much of his exterior is facade in the first place, it makes sense that he readily changes to suit the occasion. Then again,I really like Takato as a character so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt.

Onto Junta now? Or did you have something to add?

Dakaichi Episode 6 Junta
I can kind of see where Junta is coming from here.

Yeah, let me just comment in what you said xD(We should just do a post about Takato and call it a day ahah)

I’m with you, I really am. I compeltely understand having two different personalities when it comes to work. Especially when you work at the show biz. I also completely understand how Takato is way more vulnerable when he’s with Junta. In fact, Takato never had that kind of support, so it’s just natural that he wants to be himself and let his barriers go when he’s with Junta.

However, in this case, we see a weak Takato in front of Ayagi… I mean, this could be because Takato is slowly becoming more himself even when at work… However, it just felt a little too convenient so we could have that scene.

Nevertheless, I think Takato’s experience after that night is very well executed. In this case, I don’t’t think Takato would ever think that he was about to be raped. In his mind, he just asked himself if he had drunk too much, had sex with the guy and completely forget about it (without anyone forcing anyone). Only the viewers know what Ayagi was trying to do. And Junta, who gets it right away.

So, yeah, I think Takato is a great character which is becoming more and more complex 🙂

Well, let’s start on Junta’s episode? XD

Dakaichi Episode 7 - Junta

Junta it is. And I will admit episode 7 did a lot to make me start actually caring about Junta as more than just the other guy in the relationship. I do remember part of his story from reading it, but it was really nice to see his character and motives getting fleshed out. I actually really found it cute how he slowly started noticing Takato and what he was doing on the set until Takato kind of dominated all of his attention. And then he overhears Takato having a bit of a tantrum and you see the light bulb go off in his head and you know he’s hooked. It was adorable and for once I didn’t find Junta just the extra in the relationship but actually a character worth noting for who he was.

You?

Dakaichi Episode 7 Takato and Junta

See? I told you Junta was awesome! 😀

Now, for real… I’m completely with you! I wasn’t expecting for this episode. I didn’t really thought they would give an episode where we can hear Junta’s brain side. I loved to see how he fell in love by Takato and how things developed for him. In fact, it makes way more sense that first episode now xD

However, of course, I have to say that trying to steal a kiss while Takato is in bed ill, was a little too much ahah Again,Takato had the luck of someone entering the scene at the right time so he didn’t get advantage off.

Buuuuuut, I understand Junta’s feelings. When I was a teenager, in parties and things like that I would sleep in the same bed as my best friend who I was terribly in love… I’m not gonna say that I was never tempted to do something like that (of course I never did, because there are boundaries and things like that). But, I understand the feeling of loving someone so much and not being both ways. It messes with your head >.<

Now… I want to address last episode… Episode8… What did you think about this… Well filler episode? XD

Dakaichi Episode 8 Ayagi and Junta

Can we just call it trash and move on? Or do we actually need to discuss it? Because honestly, if we just cut out about a minute of Ayagi attempting to be a better person and the last five minutes where the two are photographed by the reporter (and maybe a small little slice where that other guy seems to notice their relationship)  then the rest of this can just kind of get tossed in the bin.

I don’t really mind filler but beach filler is lazy at best. Breaking the episode into seemingly mindless vignettes of the characters doing whatever was actually pretty tedious and every time they cut between sequences it just made me check the time to see if the episode was nearly done.

How about you?

Dakaichi Episode 8 Junta

AHAHAHAH! I did the exact same thing when the cut between sequences happened. Damn! Those were a LOT, and I mean a LOT of cuts!!!! I think if you take it all of them the episode would be 5 minutes less.

I don’t really know what happened, but I felt the same way as you… Everything felt lazy as hell. Not only the scenes, but even the animation, the backgrounds… Everything seemed rushed. Character design was always changing and there were scenes where Takato didn’t even seemed himself LOL Also, character design just felt soooo off-place versus the background… Damn, it was a mess!

Oh, and also! I mean, we are in a filler episode and we didn’t got much fanservice. Which… Well, I don’t mind, but really makes you ask what the point of the episode all along…

However… there were so many scenes I laughed…I hate myself… And I loved Takato’s character on this one! XD I loved how he was all bumped on playing volleyball because Ayagi told him that he probably was bad at it xD

I don’t know… It’s true, the episode is trash…But I ended up hating and loving it at the same time! I think if they had put a little more time in creating this one that I would had just had fun from the beginning to the end ahahah So, let’s call it a guilty pleasure of mine xD

Dakaichi Episode 8 Takato and Junta

I actually think you raised a good point about the lack of fan-service. Now it is odd for me to say that they should have more fan-service or more sexually explicit content in anything, but honestly, that probably would have improved this episode. And wow… I’m never ever writing that sentence again.

Anyway, the theory I came up with in my head was that they are aiming to end the series at a particular point and they needed to stretch the run time and so we have off-model volleyball playing with a lot of stills and panning.

I should probably admit that despite this being my low point for this series, it is still getting ranked in my weekly rankings that I’m keeping at about the mid-range level so I can’t have hated it that much.

Alright, anything more to discuss or are we wrapping things up?

Ahahah xD See… I don’t know, there was just something in that episode that shines and makes the episode fun 😛

But, yes, agree with your theory. I also think that they are more into creating the perfect finale, which means, they decided to take less time on working in episode 8 and just get more time to work in the final 4.

And… Well, never say never XD We never know whatt he future may bring.

Nevertheless, I don’t really have much to add.Just wanna say that I’m pretty excited with what it’s coming there! Having the couple being exposed in the media is going to be an interesting ride to watch.If they do this correctly, the relationship will come out way stronger and we will get that cheesy ending moment where they will both say to each other:

“Even if lose my career, what I want is to be with…” – proceed to kiss in a bed

And that’s it from my end 🙂 Can’t wait to watch the rest of it and comment with you our final thoughts ^^

I’m also really looking forward to the end of this one. Not because I don’t like it, but because I really want that moment where they either end up together or choose their career (and I honestly can’t remember how it goes so I’ll be really surprised either way). But I have loved this journey they are on with their relationship. For all the problems this series has, it is still fantastic to see these two getting together and seeing how that is changing them as we go.

Thanks so much for joining me for this one and I really am excited for our next post where we do our final impressions.

Thank you for having me 🙂 And I’m pretty excited too eheh


Okay, that was a really long chat but we both had a great time and hopefully you enjoyed joining us for it. Of course both Arthifis and I would love to know your thoughts on Dakaichi so leave us a comment below and remember to check out our thoughts on Goblin Slayer over on Arthis’ Place. If you missed our previous talks the links are below.

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Friday’s Feature – Anime For Advertising

We all know anime that was produced entirely to get people to buy something. Whether it be cards, the manga, particular products, an idea, or games, these kind of productions have been around for a long time. Let’s be honest, a lot of this is actually the reason anime gets funded. Like with any kind of commercial art, someone is trying to make a profit from it and the show itself may not be enough to cut it.

Usually, I don’t really care whether an anime is trying to advertise something provided it follows a few simple rules.

  1. Tell a complete story. Even if you want me to buy the manga to see other parts of the story and further developments, your anime series should come to some sort of resolution. This is just storytelling basics. Don’t start something unless you intend to end it.
  2. Your advertising should not intrude on the story. This one is an issue for all those card battle anime. Some of them manage to integrate the card systems into their narrative without too much contrivance but others it just feels awkward.
  3. Be up front about your purpose. People more or less accept advertising and product placement. Most fans also accept that something has to fund the entertainment industry. Nobody really cares except for a few idealists who think art should exist in some commercialess (okay, positive that isn’t actually a word) vacuum. What viewers tend to dislike is being sold something (hey, great anime here!) and then finding out that rule 1 and 2 are completely broken and all we have is a vehicle for selling something.
  4. Be good. You bothered to fund an anime to advertise. At least do a solid job and entertain us. This one really should be self-explanatory and yet seems to be the one that gets dropped most often.

The reason I’m thinking of this at the moment is because of Tales of Zestiria/Tales of Berseria. While I am enjoying the anime, the last two episodes have really been pure advertising. I didn’t hate it (in fact I quite enjoyed both episodes) but I haven’t been given a complete story here. What I’ve been given is something that actually was really good and enjoyable to watch, didn’t feel like advertising (for most of the episodes) and I was pretty clear on what I was getting in the first place. But I haven’t been given a complete story.

As someone who hasn’t played Tales of Zestiria and is fairly unlikely to go looking for a spin off/prequel game, this is a bit disappointing. I also know that makes me not the intended audience so I should probably just not whine and enjoy what is available.

I don’t see making an anime for advertising as a cash grab necessarily. A lot of the time these anime do provide fans with a lot of entertainment. These anime can also draw in new fans (not in a sleezy cash driven way but just by exposing a new audience to the characters and merchandise they may not have seen otherwise). Basically, for me it comes down to transparency of purpose and whether or not what is made is worth watching on its own merit. And that is a really important point. Telling me that the visual novel, the manga, the game or whatever else is awesome does not make the anime any better than what it can deliver as a stand alone piece of entertainment.

Where-ever you sit, I’m curious as to what you think about using anime for advertising.

Or failing that, what are some of the anime you’ve watched that have existed to advertise that you’ve enjoyed/found really irritating?

 

Wolf Girl and Black Prince – Discussion

This one isn’t a review as I haven’t watched this series recently. What brought it up was that this title was recently added on AnimeLab.

It’s about a girl named Erika who, like the boy who cried wolf, talks to her new classmates about her wonderful boyfriend even though she doesn’t have one. When cornered, she shows them a picture on her phone of a guy she randomly photographed in town however it turns out he’s actually going to the same school. Instead of fessing up at this point, Erika has to convince Kyoya to play along but it turns out he’s just a little bit of a sadist.

I’m really interested in how people have responded to the relationship in this anime. While I get that stories aren’t real like and not every relationship represented is going to be sunshine and roses, I can’t help but feel that this anime really hits the wrong notes from the start.

What really annoys about this anime, is that Erika can stop the emotional abuse she is going through at any time. All she has to do is tell the truth. And what is the worst thing that will happen from telling the truth? Her lame non-friends will probably laugh at her and then move on and she can try to make real friends. Watching Erika jumping through Kyoya’s hoops is irritating and her absolute lack of backbone as a human being is slightly depressing. The anime then tries to cast Kyoya in a sympathetic light and while (if you ignore everything that has happened before) it might even be successful, it doesn’t justify what he puts Erika through earlier in the anime.

So, if you’ve seen it, let me know what you thought below.

Friday’s Feature – The Nice Protagonist

This week I’d like to examine the nice protagonist (note – this is slightly different from the self-insert protagonist so common in the vast majority of harem comedies). No, the nice protagonist has the defining trait of being nice, but still has additional personality traits (underneath being nice all the time).

Just like overpowered or complete jerk protagonists, nice protagonists cop their fair share of criticism. They’re boring, they’re unrealistic, they’re just allowing themselves to be walked all over, and –  probably the most fatal trait for a protagonist –  they’re completely forgettable.

For instance: Bell from Is It Wrong To Try and Pick Up Girl’s in a Dungeon? is a nice protagonist (see my review). He’s also adventurous, impatient, ambitious, a little bit lecherous, and a lot insecure. So being nice isn’t his only personality trait. But when you talk to people about this show they discuss Hestia, the fight scenes, the weapons, occasionally Loki, but they don’t mention Bell. Or if they do, they call him the Main Character because half the time they don’t remember his name.

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And it seems a bit harsh to not even remember Bell’s name. He has some incredible character development both in literal skills and in his focus and goals. He also gives us one of the most dramatic fight sequences I think I’ve ever watched and one where I genuinely cared if this nice character was actually going to make it through the fight.

DanMachi.gif

The common saying of nice guys finish last seems to apply here. Get anyone to list their favourite protagonists and the vast majority of them will not be nice guys. So why is it we don’t like nice protagonists?

And I already know people will argue, but we don’t dislike them. And that’s true to. That’s why they exist at all. Because they don’t cause people to dislike them. But, in the absence of a truly great story or supporting cast the nice protagonist will just slip off your radar without a second thought.

Which all of course raises the question of what is it about human nature that ‘nice’ is seen as such a dull descriptor of a person? I was watching a rom-com recently (not anime amazingly) where the girl had the choice of two guys and she was describing them to a friend. Mid-way through one description the friend made snorted and then said that she’d literally just fallen asleep. Why? Because the guy was nice. Apparently that’s a death sentence in a rom-com because at the end of the film the girl ended up with the other guy.

So, my question is: Who is your favourite ‘Nice’ protagonist?

Let’s give all the nice guys (and girls) a shout out.